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Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15

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Today: Oct 23, 2017

Annual Narrative Report (2009)

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Letter from Chairman of the Board of Directors:

On behalf of all members of the JCESR's Board of Directors, I am very pleased to present JCESR's annual report for 2009. The goal of our report is not to celebrate the continuous delivery of high quality programs but also to list the accomplishments of our organization. Our success in the center efforts in challenging the Israeli legal system to help the Palestinian population exercise steadfastness in their city despite of all of Israeli measures and policies to depopulate the city of its Arab citizens is heartening.

This report also serves as an acknowledgment of thanks to our dedicated staff that has worked with vigor to accomplish JCESR's annual plan. A word of thanks also goes to our stakeholders and supporters who have made this year a success and the future bright.

Forward from the General Director of JCSER

Following its 13 years of experience in the field of human rights, we believe there is a great need for continuing with our mission, particular following what we observe of current escalation in Israeli measures and policies which target the Palestinian population in East Jerusalem. In 2009, the most escalation was in the field of house demolition when Israeli authorities demolished 85 Palestinian homes leaving some 510 displaced individuals. There is also an escalation in the policy of internal deportation where the citizens are banned from entering the old city and al-Aqsa Mosque. The escalation included the revocation of Palestinian ID. In 2008 alone, Israeli Ministry of Interior revoked the residency status of 4,577 Palestinian, including 99 minors, which was approximately half the number of residency revocation between 1967 and 2007. In this context, Yakir Segev who is in charge of East Jerusalem Portfolio in Nir Barkat municipality, announced on January 7, 2010 that the segregation wall was built for demographic reasons "to remove 50,000 Arabs from Jerusalem." Moreover, we estimate that there are around 20,000 pending demolition orders which mean that there are around 120,000 individual Palestinians await displacement.

Nevertheless, following the closure of Palestinian institutions in 2001, despite Shimon Peres' letter to his then-counterpart, Norwegian Foreign Minister Johan Holst on October 11, 2002, in which he promised not to "hamper their activity" and to encourage their important mission, there is a mounting need for the services provided by the civil society organizations to respond to Israeli policies in the city.

JCSER believes that its duty is to respond to Israeli policies and practices that discriminate against Palestinians and to provide legal aid to victims of Israeli human rights violations in the city. There are several Palestinian and Israeli human rights organizations working in this field. However, JCSER is the leading specialized organization in Jerusalem and focusing on social and economic rights. This focus is important as the status of Jerusalem, and therefore the situation of Palestinians living in the city, is unique. However, because of its unique position and situation, Jerusalem needs special attention and a special approach. Therefore, JCESR and despite all the hardships and risks will continue to achieve its mission of achieving a democratic Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital based on the international accepted and supported two state solution through political means. To that end, JCESR will continue to challenge the Israeli legal system, provide legal assistance to the Palestinian population, raise awareness to Israeli violations and abuses and influence the decision makers to adopt the appropriate and needed position to secure human rights of Palestinians in their city.

JCESR's Mission, Vision, and Objectives:

Mission:

An independent, democratic and sovereign Palestinian state, in which all of its citizens enjoy their basic rights, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

Vision:

To protect and promote the social and economic rights of Palestinians in Jerusalem, in addition of the systematical challenge to the discriminatory Israeli legislation, regulations and practices, which violate basic Palestinian rights in Jerusalem. JCSER strives to achieve the maximum protection of individual and collective Palestinian rights in Jerusalem realizable under the circumstances of military occupation.

Objectives:

- To defend the existing individual and collective social and economic rights of Palestinians in Jerusalem against further erosion as a result of changes in Israeli policy and legislation, and ensure that these rights are not violated through arbitrary action by the Israeli authorities;

- To challenge and reduce institutional discrimination against the Palestinian community in Jerusalem and to expand the rights available to the Palestinian community in Jerusalem within Israels legislative environment;

- To collect and provide data about social and economic rights violations, discriminatory legislation, regulations and practices, and their consequences for the Palestinian community;

- To promote awareness among decision-makers and the general public, locally as well as internationally, about Israeli violations of Palestinian rights in East Jerusalem, and more broadly the fundamental incompatibility between Palestinian rights and Israeli military occupation;

- To empower the Palestinian community in Jerusalem to effectively challenge Israeli violations of their social and economic rights and to resist Israeli attempts to evict them or pressure them to leave their city.

- To monitor and document human rights violations against the Palestinian population in East Jerusalem.

- To provide legal assistance and representation, publishes scientific studies and research on social and economic issues, and raises public awareness. JCESR acts on the following issues:

  • Residency rights:

- ID Card confiscation;

- Family unification;

- Child registration.

  • Social security rights, including social insurance:

- Access to health services;

- Provision of allowances and social benefits.

  • Municipal services & municipality (Arnona) tax system:

- Arnona tax;

- Provision of equal services.

  • Building restrictions and illegal building

- Consequences of illegal building, including house demolitions, fines and imprisonment

  • Cases related to other Israeli violations

JCSERs Main Activities

- Legal representation and consultancy

- Data base

- Research

- Awareness Raising,

- Networking

- Policy formulation

- Media and information

JCSER's Board of Trustees

Hanna Amireh, Chairman of the Board, journalist

Dr. Raed Juneidi, Deputy Chairman, Head of Union of Jerusalem Physicians

Aref Naser Eddin, Treasurer, activist in social and economic movements;

Zahra Al-Khalidi, Journalist.

Naim Ashhab, writer/journalist

Mahmoud Shuqeir, writer.

Azzam Abu Soud, Head of the Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture.

Background information about JCSER

The Jerusalem Center for Social & Economic Rights (JCSER) is a Palestinian non-governmental human rights organization based in Jerusalem. It was established in 1997 by lawyers and members of the Palestinian community of Jerusalem to provide legal assistance and representation to Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem subjected to discriminatory policies by the Israeli authorities.

JCSER fits in the context of Palestinian political strategies today. It makes use of the Israeli system to help Palestinian Jerusalemites survive in the city. It seeks ways to take the initiative to proactively fight discrimination and improve conditions of daily life in the short term without conferring political legitimacy on Israels illegal annexation of East Jerusalem.

The Center was developed from a local committee established in 1992 to support Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem unable to pay the Israeli Municipal Business and Property (Arnona) Tax. This committee, made up of local residents, started negotiations with the municipality and organized demonstrations and strikes. In 1994, the group took legal action against the Jerusalem Municipality concerning its discriminatory application of the Arnona Tax and requested that the Arnona classification be changed. This was the first time that Palestinian Jerusalemites negotiated with Israeli institutions and used Israeli law to deal with this type of systematic discrimination and injustice. The establishment of JCSER was the result of this grassroots effort.

JCSER is presently the leading institution specifically devoted to providing representation and other legal services on social and economic rights to the Palestinian community in Jerusalem. The overall goal of the Center is to achieve full equality of rights and opportunities for the Palestinians of East Jerusalem. Under the current circumstances of military occupation, it strives to achieve the maximum protection of individual and collective Palestinian rights by systematically challenging the validity of discriminatory Israeli legislation, regulations, and practices.

JCESR Main Programs:

1. Legal Program

2. Data Base

3. Research

4. Awareness Raising

5. Networking

6. Policy formulation

7. Media and information

JCSER Legal Program:

The center's legal program aims at providing legal consultancies and representations to Palestinian population of Jerusalem who are facing Israeli forced displacement measures and policies. In 2008, there were 268,400 Palestinians, according to the Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies while the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics estimated the number to be 368,394 Palestinians. Since the illegal occupation and annexation of the city in 1967, Israels objectives in Jerusalem have been to establish irreversible and exclusive control over the city. A framework has been created to integrate East Jerusalem into Israel and to separate it from the rest of the Occupied Territories. Policies have been implemented by the Israeli national and municipal authorities to ensure Israels domination, and to prevent possible re-partition of the city by creating territorial contiguity and ensuring a Jewish demographic majority. In 1973, the Israeli ministerial committee, Gafni Commission, laid down the policy to keep the demographic balance in Jerusalem at a ratio of 70% Jews to 30% Arabs. However, according to estimates by the Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies, the Jewish population of Jerusalem is expected to drop from its current level of 66% to 50% by the year 2035. On January 7, 2010, Yakir Segev who is in charge of East Jerusalem Portfolio in Israel's Jerusalem Municipality which is headed by the right wing Nir Barkat announced that the segregation wall was built for demographic reasons "to remove 50,000 Arabs from Jerusalem." It is worth mentioning that 66.8% of Palestinian families and 74% of children in East Jerusalem (94,000) live under the poverty line, according to JIIS.

Israel is also racing with time, as through its policies it attempts to create new facts on the ground before entering any kind of political settlement related to Jerusalem. In practice, this has led to a range of measures designed to undermine and reduce the Palestinian presence in Jerusalem. They range from formal expulsion to more subtle measures designed to encourage Palestinian emigration. Various policies and practices discriminate against the Palestinian population, are interrelated and strengthen each other.

On its part, JCSER undertakes the task of challenging and change these policies through legal representation and consultancy.

1-1 Legal representation

Legal representation designed to defend the Palestinian right to remain in Jerusalem has from the outset formed the essential core of JCSERs work and will continue to do so. In contrast to other occupation regimes, the Israeli authorities expend considerable effort to lend their violations of the rights of the indigenous Palestinian population an air of legality, in significant part to counter impressions that they achieve their goals by means of an arbitrary exercise of power. This context enhances the effectiveness of a strategy based on legal challenges, both because of the myriad of legal and administrative regulations whose validity and implementation can be contested, and because this strategy challenges the image of a lawful occupant which Israel consistently seeks to project to the international community, Israeli society, and even the Palestinians.

The initial and continuing emphasis on legal aid is a natural outgrowth of JCSERs mission and mandate. It permits the organization to provide individual Palestinians and the community as a whole with direct assistance on critical issues. This strategy has enabled the organization to establish a recognizable presence within the community, and to obtain vital data in the process.

It is worth mentioning that JCESR is the only unique center in occupied Jerusalem which provides legal representation to vulnerable Palestinian of the city, despite the costly needed budget. Costs of law suits in Israeli legal system vary depending on the nature of the case. There are some cases where the courts do not condition paying any fees while there are other cases were the fees for the courts are at lease NIS 400. However, attorney fees differ from one office to another and it could range between $1000 and $10,000 in some cases. In 2009 alone, Jerusalem municipality collected around NIS 17,710,000 in construction fines only, knowing that thousands of Palestinians failed to pay their debts to the municipality because of their economic hardships.

In 2009, JCESR provided legal representation for 67 cases as illustrated in the table below:-

Construction fines

National insurance benefits

Arnona Tax

Family re-unification

Registration of children

Miscellaneous

31

9

13

10

1

3

Total

67

1-2 Legal Consultancy

Through this activity, JCESR provided qualitative legal services by professional lawyers to Palestinian population of occupied Jerusalem who are impoverished and cannot afford legal fees, knowing that in 2007, 66.8% of Palestinian families and 74% of Palestinian children have lived under the poverty line. As part of this activity, JCESR provided legal, technical consultations and guidance on various daily life issues, including land ownership and confiscation, settlements, building and structural organization procedures, houses demolition, family reunification, child registration, ID cards revocation, taxes, mobility restrictions and other issues related to Palestinians' rights in Jerusalem.

In 2009, JCESR provided legal consultancies to 1050 Palestinians of Jerusalem. They were distributed as follows:-

Month

Construction fines

National insurance benefits

Arnona Tax

Family re-unification

Registration of children

Miscellaneous

Jan. & Feb. & March.

67

24

57

34

5

5

April

24

9

17

16

4

7

May

22

10

25

16

5

7

June @ July

62

19

48

19

20

16

Aug.

30

13

36

21

-

3

Sept.

25

11

23

19

-

5

Oct.

41

10

42

12

-

6

Nov.

34

10

27

10

-

5

Dec.

`54

14

45

12

-

4

Total

359

120

320

159

34

58

1-3 Description of achievements:

In general, the program was able to protect the rights of some 1117 Palestinian impoverished families which suffered of various Israeli violations in the holy city. In other words, approximately 6700 Palestinian individuals enjoy legal protection from the center program and were assisted from a legal perspective to stay in their city without being obliged to leave it because of the heavy burden of life under the Israeli occupation which exploit every means to force and pressure the Palestinian population to leave their city in order to meet its plan of Juadizing the city by decreasing the number of Arab Palestinian population.

Nevertheless, in regards to recent escalation in Israeli measures and practices against the Palestinians in Jerusalem, there is an urgent need to maintain this program knowing that are over 20,000 outstanding demolition orders pending against Palestinians buildings in East Jerusalem, according to the Municipality statistics. In case of implementing those orders, approximately 120,000 Palestinians will be threatened with displacement.

On the other hand, in 2008 Israeli Ministry of Interior revoked the residency status of 4,577 Palestinians of Jerusalem, including 99 minors, that is approximately half the number of residency revocation between 1967 and 2007. Also, there are around 10,000 children living in East Jerusalem without being registered in their parents' ID cards. The proportion of such children who cannot register at public schools or receive medical care due to their non registration is estimated at %23.6.

1-4 Special cases
1-4-1 Anisa Mansour case:

The ID card of Mansour was revoked on July 31, 2008 on allegation that she is a holder of an American passport. Mansour, 52, obtained her passport in 1991 when she was in the US. However, while she was crossing one of the checkpoints, she was ordered to renew her ID card because of its old picture. Consequently, on July 31, 2008 she went to office of the Israeli Ministry of Interior to renew her ID card, but was informed there by a senior female employee that her ID was canceled, which meant that she was no more enjoying the residency rights in Jerusalem and was ordered to leave the country within 30 days.

When she reported to our center, the Legal Unit appealed against the ministry decision. On December 19, 2008 JCESR lawyer Muhammad Qaddah accompanied Mansour to office of the ministry. There, the lawyer presented all the documents that prove that the center of her life was in Jerusalem. He tried to convince the office that holding an American passport does not necessarily lead to loosing the residency rights in Jerusalem. Yet, the ministry insisted on its decision and informed the layer in written that it would not cancel its decision. The following correspondences with the ministry were in futile. As a result, the lawyer decided to approach the Central Court and he succeeded in obtaining a decision ordering the ministry not to deport Mansour from the country. During the court proceeding which was convened on April 19, 2009, the prosecutor decided to cancel the ministry decision and returning the ID to Mansour. Therefore, our intervention prevented Mansour from being deported to the US.

1-4-2 Aysheh Shqeir case:

On October 10, 2001 Shqeir, 73, received a demolition order for her house on allegation that it was built without a construction permit. She was also given a period of one year to obtain a permit or to demolish it by her own. However, when our Legal Unit interfered, it succeeded in convincing the court that the old Palestinian woman did not receive a demolition order but an order to pay a fine of NIS 30,000. Following the court session on March 30, 2009 the judge of regional affairs issued his decision of clearing the woman of all offenses. He also decided that the woman should work on obtaining a construction license for her house which locates in Jabal al-Mukaber until November 1, 2009. Therefore the center interference helped in avoiding the demolition of the house and the consequent displacement of the woman with her entire family.

1-4-3 Yousef Abbasi case:

Abbasi received a demolition order on March 10, 2009 for his house which situated in Silwan neighborhood of Jerusalem. He was also ordered to pay a fine of NIS 67,300. When he reported to our center, our Legal Unit explained to the court the economic hardships of the Palestinian man and finally the court decided to reduce the fine to NIS 35,000 to be paid in 70 installments in addition of financial commitment of NIS 20,000 on condition of avoid committing more breaches to Israeli construction laws. The court also delayed the demolition until July 10, 2009 which could be extended in order to obtain a license. So far the house remains intact.

1-4-4 Abdel Rahman Abbad

When Mr. Abbad discovered that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem froze his bank account because of his debts for the Arnona (property taxes) Department, he headed to our office seeking legal assistance. Following JCSER intervention, it was discovered that his account was froze following a law suit filed by the Israeli Immigration Department on allegation that he was in debt for the municipality amounted to NIS 7000. However, JCSER's attorney Samer Suleiman disagreed with the municipality about amount of debts and proved that part of it was accumulated on an old building were Abbad used to live in the past.

Following the center's request, the municipality dispatched its employees to Abbad's home and realized the reality of the situation. In light of the correspondences with the municipality's attorney a compromise was achieved to cancel the client illegal debt and he was ordered to pay only the amount of NIS 5000 in taxes. Consequently, the court was notified about the compromise and later it ordered cancelling his account freeze. Therefore, JCSER intervention helped in avoiding him paying for the law suit and court fees.

1-4-4 Anad Obeidat

Obeidat was issued an ultimatum to demolish his house until February 1, 2009. When he approached the center, our lawyer requested the municipality to extend the period of time, yet the center demand was rejected. Consequently, the lawyer appealed against the municipality decision to the Israeli court which finally accepted the request and extending the period of time until Marc 17, 2010 during which Obeidat will have to obtain a construction permit.

2. Data Base

Since its establishment in 1997, JCESR has compiled a reliable data base about Palestinian human rights violations. However, due to the conflicting information about Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights, the center decided to upgrade and develop its current data base to serve as a reference for all concerned with human rights violations in occupied Jerusalem. In this context, the center plan to build a modern and computerized system for documenting the violations. This plan gained more momentum of support with the conclusion of the policy meeting which the center organized on May 2009 to discuss ways of response to Israeli violations and measures in the occupied city. Several Palestinian politicians, academics and experts participated in the discussion such as: Jerusalem Governor Adnan al-Husseini; Head of Jerusalem Unit in the Palestinian Presidency Office, lawyer Ahmad al-Ruweidi; Head of al-Quds University Dr. Seri Nusseibeh; PLO Executive Committee member Hannah Amireh; politicians Hatem Abdul Qader and Abdel Latif Geith; Journalists and human rights researchers Muhammad Abed Rabbo and Mousa Qous; academics Ibrahim Sha'ban, Jamil Hammami and Mahmoud Safadi in addition to the civic work activist Aref Nasser Eldin. Among the main conclusions of the policy meeting was establishing an efficient and reliable data base for Israeli violation of Palestinian human rights in order to provide united and efficient information to serve as reference for Palestinian decision makers, negotiators, researchers, etc.

The intended data base will provide accurate information about various issues of violations such as: Palestinian residency rights (ID cards revocation, family unification and child registration); social security rights including insurance (access to health services, provision of allowances and social benefits); municipal services and tax system namely Arnona property tax-, provision of equal services; building restrictions and "illegal" building (house demolitions, fines and imprisonment).

Therefore, such a data base will help in tracking trends of violations and issuing special analysis. Consequently, the center can prepare a yearly or even monthly index of human rights violations.

Nevertheless, JCESR will keep its trend of issuing monthly reports that document Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights in the occupied city particularly in the field of ID revocation, house demolitions and other violations. Moreover, the center published several special reports that tackle certain topics of concern for the Palestinian population which needs special focus. The Center will continue to prepare and publish such reports.

3. Research

In addition to the monthly reports of Israeli violations in occupied Jerusalem, the center issued eight special reports to tackle and shed lights on various issues of concern. The reports were as follows:

1. House Demolitions in Occupied Jerusalem.

The report provided statistics and information about Israeli policy and its impact and burden on the Palestinian population.

2. US Organization Financing Settlement Activities in Occupied Jerusalem.

It included a list of some American organizations, which are exempted from taxes and figures who are involved in Israeli settlement expansion in occupied Jerusalem.

3. Child Registration in Occupied Jerusalem.

It provided some statistics about the issue of Palestinian children who are denied registry in they parents ID cards which means denying their residency rights in their city.

4. Demographic Facts in Occupied Jerusalem.

It provided demographic statistics and trends of population growth in occupied Jerusalem. It also addressed Israeli policies and measures to reduce the number of Palestinian population in the city which is seen by the Israeli as a demographic threat to their existence.

5. Education in Occupied Jerusalem.

The report addressed the deteriorated reality of education in the occupied city in addition to the shortage in classrooms to absorb the number of students.

6. The Network of Tunnels in Occupied Jerusalem.

It shed lights on the network of tunnels that the Israelis are digging under Silwan village and the Old City and their negative impacts on the Palestinian population.

7. House Own Demolition

The report addressed the new phenomena of Palestinians who began to demolish their houses on they own to avoid paying high fines and costs of demolition for the municipality.

9. Racial Abuse to Palestinians in Jerusalem

The report shed lights on the deliberate attacks by Israeli settlers and police force which were based on racist grounds against the Palestinian population of the city.

4. Awareness Raising

In 2009, staff of the center continued with their efforts to create awareness among Palestinians of occupied Jerusalem. Within the context of their efforts, they participated in the activities which were organized in the protesting tent in Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah against settlement activities. The two areas observe the main focus of Israeli settlement activities that threat with the displacement of Palestinians there. In Silwan neighborhood, Israeli authorities plan to demolish in al-Bustan area 88 Palestinian homes to establish the so called David Garden following the displacement of some 1500 Palestinians. However, in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, Israeli occupation authorities plan to take over 28 Palestinian homes on claims that they were owned by Jews during the late Turkish era. Palestinian families have been living in the area since they were forced to emigrate from their original homes in West Jerusalem in 1948. They settled there in 1956 following an agreement between the Jordanian government and UNRWA. Israeli authorities plan to replace Palestinian homes with building 500 settlement housing units to house some 2500 settlers in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.

Although the lawyer of the Palestinian families provided an official Turkish document to the court denying that the documents presented in settler possession had been issued by any legal body in Turkey, yet, the court ordered the evacuation of four Palestinian families to displace 80 Palestinians of their members.

The center also participated in almost all of the workshops and conferences which were organized by various local organizations namely the Coalition for Jerusalem, which the center is part of. Most of the Coalition activities focuses on Israeli violation and practices in the occupied city. JCESR staff also participated in joint activities with other organizations of the civil society such as the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Democracy and International Dialogue, Miftah; Palestinian Youth Association for Leadership And Rights Activation, PYALARA; Human Rights and Democratic Participation Center, SHAMS in addition of participating with an activity in Silwan organized jointly by Welfare Association; Palestinian Counseling Center and Save the Children-UK.

4-1 Conferences:

The center also participated in organizing local conferences and participated in others regional about human rights.

4-1-1 Local conferences:

1- Conference about Israeli excavation and tunnels in Silwan and Jerusalem's Old City. It was organized on April 28, in Ambassador Hotel with participation of Al Aqsa Institution for Waqf and Culture.

1- Conference entitled Reality of Education in Jerusalem. It was organized by the center on September 6 at the Mount Scopus Hotel. It addressed the deteriorated situation of education sector in the city.

4-1-2 Regional conferences:

JCESR participated in a conference convened in Aleppo in Syria between July 6 and 8 as part of the festivities marking Jerusalem as the capital of Arab culture for 2009. The conference entitled Jerusalem Days was held under sponsorship of the Syrian Ministry of Culture. JCESR delegate presented a paper about social, economic, cultural and education situation in Jerusalem. The paper was very informative since it provided updated information about the general situation in the city. The conference concluded with expressing readiness to provide all kind of political and media support to Palestinians in Jerusalem.

4-2 Press releases:

As part of its efforts to create awareness, the center issued 59 press releases which addressed various urgent issues of concerns for the Palestinian population in Jerusalem. In its releases, the center attempted to provide guidance over dealing with the various Israeli policies. It also presented the international law perspective towards the Israeli positions and decisions against the Palestinian population in Jerusalem. They also urged for local, regional and international response. The statements were wildly published particularly in local press, namely al-Quds newspaper the leading circulating paper in addition to various web sites.

5. Networking

Based on the belief that only consolidating collective acts are the best effective response to Israeli measures and practices in Jerusalem, JCESR help in establishing several coalitions and is already part of others such as:

- The Civic Coalition for Defending Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem (CCDPRJ);

- The Jerusalem Coalition against House Demolition;

- The coalition for the Defense of Jerusalem;

- The Coalition to Stop ID Card Confiscation from Palestinian Jerusalemites;

- The Coalition for Education;

- The Land Defense Committees.

In the coming year, JCESR plans to extend its base of local, regional and international coalitions by signing memorandums of understanding with at least four additional coalitions.

6. Policy formulation

In order to increase the center influence on the Palestinian decision making process in regards to issues related to Jerusalem, the center organized a policy meeting entitled Israeli Measures in Jerusalem. The meeting was convened on May 5, 2009 and was attended by politicians, academics, researchers and journalists. Among the participants were: Jerusalem Governor Adnan al-Husseini; Head of Jerusalem Unit in the Palestinian Presidency Office, lawyer Ahmad al-Ruweidi; Head of al-Quds University Dr. Seri Nusseibeh; PLO Executive Committee member Hannah Amireh; politicians Hatem Abdul Qader and Abdel Latif Geith; Journalists and human rights researchers Muhammad Abed Rabbo and Mousa Qous; academics Ibrahim Sha'ban, Jamil Hammami and Mahmoud Safadi in addition to the civic action activist Are Nasser Eldin. The meeting analyzed the general situation in Jerusalem and made several recommendations for protecting the city and responding to Israeli measures and practices. The policy paper was distributed to various PA agencies and ministries and suggested to them the needed position that should be taken.

The main conclusions of the meeting:-

- Working out a strategy for Palestinian action in Jerusalem for the coming three to five years, in cooperation with Palestinian institutions in Jerusalem such as al-Quds University and others. However, this action shouldn't replace long term strategies regarding the status of the city.

- Conditioning the resumption of negotiations with a change in Israeli policies in the Holy City particularly in regards to settlements activities. Palestinian action in the city should not be restricted to the negotiating table but should propose other options that could prove fruitful in halting Israeli policies in Jerusalem.

- Activating the role of PLO in the city knowing that signed agreements do not prohibit this.

- Establishing a united fund for supporting various sector needs in the city. For its part, the Palestinian Authority should allocate special budgets to the city. Moreover, it should adopt the appropriate measures to regain Arab financial support for the city since it should not be restricted to Europeans.

- Forming a legal architecture commission for defending Palestinian cases in Jerusalem and seeking help from Arab and international experts in international law. In addition, there should be a follow up committee to set zoning plans for Palestinian construction in Jerusalem and to establish a Palestinian database pertaining to all issues of interest for the Palestinian population.

- Establishing a frame of reference under PLO sponsorship to unite plans and actions for the various references in the city.

8. Media and information

As part of the center efforts to increase its influence on the decision makers and create awareness on the local, Arab and international levels, director of the Center held dozens of media interviews with local, Arab and foreign media. The interviews were distributed as follows:

Interviews by JCESR's director

TV

195

Jordanian, Saudi, al-Jazeera, Bahrain, Russia, Future, Nile, Palestine, Arabia, al-Hura, LBC, al-Quds, KSA, Pal media, Manar, Lebanon, Egyptian, Syrian, MBC, Kuwaiti, Omani, CNN.

Radio

108

Voice of Arabs, al-Sharq, Ajyal, al-Quds, al-Iman, Dutch Radio, Voice of Israel, Fursan al-Iradah, al-Salam, Chinese Radio, Amwaj, ARD, Angam, Cairo, Rai, Zein, Canadian Radio.

News papers and magazines

34

Al-Safeer, Palestine, al-Shorouk, Egyptian today, Liberation, al-Sharq, al-Hayyat al-Jadidah, Emirates, Yediot Ahronot, Morocco, Dan Chi China, Tobina Hirone.

Internet media sites

17

Islam Online, Maan, al-Jazeera net, Palestine net.

Media agencies

4

AFP, Middle East Agency, Abna Qudsana, Jerusalem Media Center.

Human rights organizations

7

Arab center for Studies and Researches, Al-Amal Center, Rabbis for Human Rights, Faisal al-Husseini Association, al-Jazeera Center, Misereor.

Researchers

4

Local and foreign researchers

Consular and International delegations

8

Delegations from the German, British and Turkish consulates, the Quartet office, UN, Irish parliament & foreign ministry and Norwegian women delegation.

9- Looking forward

According to the set plan for 2010, JCSER hopes to increase its legal assistance to the impoverished Palestinian population in the occupied city of Jerusalem by increasing the number of legal representation in courts with at least 50 cases and the legal consultancies by 200.

Moreover, in addition to the regular monthly reports, the center will issue and publish at least four special reports, develop and upgrade its database and continue to issue its press release in response to Israeli flagrant violations of Palestinian human rights.

In consent with the center policy to coordinate its efforts with other human rights organizations, the center plans to sign additional agreements with counterpart organizations as part of its networking plan.

It also plans to boost its influence on the decision making process through organizing several policy meetings and we will continue to participate in events and activities that help in raising awareness regarding the situation of human rights situation in the Palestinian occupied city.