Israelis appeal against training of India police accused of abuse
A petition filed in Israel’s top court seeks to prevent the training of Indian officers accused of Kashmir abuses.
Dozens of Israeli activists have petitioned the Supreme Court seeking to bar the country’s security forces from training Indian police officers involved in “severe violations” of human rights and international law in Indian-administered Kashmir.
“With this petition, we are trying our best to show solidarity with the people of Kashmir,” Israeli human rights activist Sigal Kook Avivi, who was among 40 people behind the petition.
The document was signed in January after the Israeli Police, Ministry of Internal Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs refused to pre-screen members of India’s police force from the Muslim-majority Himalayan region, according to Israeli human rights lawyer Eitay Mack, who filed the petition. As Israel returned to a second nationwide coronavirus lockdown last week, court proceedings are likely to be further delayed.
“The fact that India is ‘the largest democracy in the world’, and is an important political and economic partner of the state of Israel and Western countries, cannot legally and morally justify providing assistance to specific Indian officers who are involved in grave crimes under international law in Kashmir, by way of training by police in Israel,” the petition stated.
Avivi, who has worked among African asylum seekers in Israel, said “as citizens of the world, we want to say we know what is happening to you, we are not ignorant … we see it, we hear it, we know it”.
In May, the Israeli government asked the Supreme Court to dismiss the petition, as any attempt to investigate or screen Indian police officers would be considered an intervention into India’s internal affairs – which could damage relations between the two nations.
Neither Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor India’s Ministry of Home Affairs were available for comment at the time of publication.
India and Israel signed a comprehensive agreement in 2014 to cooperate on issues related to “public and homeland security”, including fighting organised crime, money laundering, human trafficking and counterterrorism operations.
International rights groups have accused Israeli security forces of using excessive force against Palestinians and restricting their movements in territories Israel occupies illegally.
The use of live ammunition, shooting civilians at checkpoints, torture of detainees, arrest of children and extrajudicial killings are well-documented since Israel occupied large parts of Palestine in 1967.
Avivi said, in light of Israel’s ill-treatment of Palestinians and migrants in the occupied territories, it was vital to understand that the country’s forces training military and police abroad “ends up further hurting people around the world”.
More than half a million Indian forces are deployed in Kashmir – home to some 12 million people – to quell a decades-old armed rebellion against Indian rule.
Indian security forces have been accused of rights abuses including intimidation, torture, extrajudicial killings and arbitrary arrests, with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights last year calling for a formal inquiry into the allegations.
Just last week, the Indian army admitted wrongdoing by its soldiers in the killing of three civilians in July.
“The Indian police force (and army) has been deployed to ensure that there is no resistance to Indian rule in occupied Kashmir,” Hafsa Kanjwal, history professor at Lafayette College, told Al Jazeera.
However, New Delhi has defended its forces, saying they are fighting rebels who either want independence or a merger with Pakistan.
Pakistan and India both claim Kashmir in full since the partition of the region in 1947 but control only parts of it.
According to Kanjwal, the Indian police force in Kashmir is an “extremely nefarious institution” which is engaged in war crimes and “has complete impunity to do what it wants to the Kashmiri population”.
“They are not there for law and order, but rather to suppress a population that has long been demanding freedom,” Kanjwal added.
In August last year, India scrapped Article 370 of its constitution – which granted a measure of autonomy to the Muslim-majority region – and jailed thousands of people, including top political figures and journalists, to prevent protests against the move. The region was also placed under the longest internet shutdown experienced in a democracy, with the communications lockdown only partially lifted.
Earlier this week, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said that “incidents of military and police violence against [Kashmiri] civilians continue”.
A United Nations report published in May also detailed severe cases of physical abuse, including the use of pellet guns on protesters, in Kashmir between January and July 2019.
The use of pellet guns – highlighted by the Israeli petition – has come under intense criticism in recent years, with the New York-based Human Rights Watch saying it causes“indiscriminate and excessive injury” and violates international standards.
In 2018, rights organisation Amnesty International called for a ban on pellet guns and sought an investigation into cases of killings or serious injuries caused by them.
‘Most dangerous policy’
Since India and Israel established diplomatic ties in 1992, the two nations have deepened social, economic and military ties.
Between 1992 and 2018, trade between the two countries increased from a mere $200m to $5.84bn, with most of the trade in the defence sector.
India is the largest buyer of Israeli arms, receiving nearly 50 percent of all Israeli arms exports between 2013-2017.
Weapons sold to India include aircraft, anti-missile defence systems, air to air missiles, drones, assault weapons and others. Some, such as the Tavor and Galil assault rifles, are used by Indian security forces in Kashmir, and Heron drones in Ladakh, near the Chinese border.
Israeli technology has also been used outside of Kashmir on Indian citizens including human rights activists and prominent political figures. In 2019, Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp accused Israeli company the NSO Group of using spyware on politicians, activists and academics, including opposition leader and Congress party member Priyanka Gandhi.
Ofer Cassif, member of Israeli Knesset and representative of the Joint List party – a grouping of Arab parties – told Al Jazeera that Israel’s policy of large-scale arms exports are “nothing new” – pointing to the country’s previous collaborations with the former apartheid regime in South Africa and Chile under military ruler Augusto Pinochet.
“This is the most dangerous trade policy Israel has been pursuing,” Cassif said, adding that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government are in “close relations with the most vicious leaders … such as [Rodrigo] Duterte in Philippines, [Jair] Bolsonaro in Brazil … and Modi in India”.
“This is unacceptable, morally and politically. In that sense I believe it is important to support such petitions.”
Israel’s police exchange programme with police departments from the United States has also come under increasing scrutiny, with calls to shut down the programme. The issue was again in the spotlight in the wake of George Floyd’s death in May, a Black man killed by a white policeman in Minneapolis.
A 2018 report by Researching the American-Israeli Alliance and the Jewish Voices for Peace group said “mass surveillance, justifying racial profiling and suppressing public protests” in the US were a result of Israel’s training of US police officers.
Amnesty International in 2016 said training programmes with Israel were putting US police employees “in the hands of military, security and police systems that have racked up documented human rights violations for years”.
‘We can’t sit quietly’
Activist Avivi and Knesset member Cassif both have little optimism, if at all, that the case can be won in the Israeli Supreme Court, citing previous examples when the court dismissed similar petitions.
In July, the court dismissed a petition demanding that foreign diplomats who were war criminals should be refused visits to Israel’s Holocaust Memorial. The court said it could not interfere in the diplomatic issues and choices of the Israeli government.
A petition filed in 2017 by lawyer Mack seeking to investigate Israeli arms sales to South Sudanese militias during the civil war was dismissed by the court, which deemed the sales legal.
Cassif said if the court were to rule in their favour, “to a certain extent, it would be unprecedented”. Despite what the final ruling may be, Avivi said she and the petitioners wanted their opposition to be on paper.
“We understand that it [the petition] won’t be successful, but we can’t just sit quietly,”
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AKANCopied from the book, Reality as Myth by Onyeji Nnaji. The influence of the
Akan on their content nations lies on their population and commonwealth of
their brother nations. The Akan are one of the largest ethnic groups in West
Africa. Their population is scattered across West Africa and beyond. Among this
huge population of the Akan, the Ghanaians are more popular, perhaps because of
the political influence of the Ashanti Empire in the area. Not much is heard or
known about other Akan settlements like the Akwamu, the Akyem , the Akuapem,
the Denkyira, the Abron, the Aowin, the Ahanta, the Anyi, the Baoule, the
Chokosi, the Fante, the Kwahu, the Sefwi, the Ahafo, the Assin, the Evalue, the
Wassa the Adjukru, the Akye, the Alladian, the Attie,the M'Bato, the Abidji,
the Avikam,the Avatime the Ebrie, the Ehotile, the Nzema, the Abbe, the Aboure,
the Coromantins, the Ndyuka people and other peoples of Côte d'Ivoire. Every Akan nation adopts the image…
from the Book; "Reality as Myth"
by Onyeji Nnaji
of the discovering of the Radar Rivers and their channels is that it disproves
the western hegemonic claim of the Euphrates valley being the position of the
birth of the great river, all the points that opposed their claims
notwithstanding. Even God himself was very perfect in His creation by placing
them in their positions, hierarchically, according to their birth. The first
river that flowed located the Havilah land where there are good quality gold,
bdellium and fine onyx stones. Pison was the oldest of the rivers and it flowed
through the land of the southern Africa. The second river flowed northward to
Ethiopia. It was when Africa had been overtaken by virtue of her proximity to
the Great Water that other parts of the world began to encounter the remaining
river; remarkable with Hiddekel.
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The major problem towards deciphering the original plac…
Copied from the book, Reality as Myths by Onyeji NnajiThe world of the Bantu travellers shows the walls of the
migration that recorded the highest population among the African settlement.
Originating from the largest population among the four races that settled in
the east before time, all Bantu travellers were pygmies; for that was the
nature of the Umudiala, the
generation that gave birth to them. Bantu migration was rated the third
earliest migration of the Negro race from the east. In this regard, all their
movement had involved great population of people compared to the number of
people involved in the two earlier populations that gave birth to Ethiopia,
Nubia and Egypt: the Walker Traveller, and the
Race of Anu. Bantu population as we have identified in the third chapter
above outweighs the rest of the population of the ancient fathers that founded
many of the nations of antiquity mentioned earlier. Discussing them in beat
will pose a little challenge since their migration condi…
My neighbour had vowed never to let any girl
survive as a salesgirl in my shop. This thing has happened for over three
times. Each time we brought a new salesgirl, the girl would stay for two or
three months; and suddenly she would end her contract with us. In all these, my
husband did not know. So, being that the girls usually stole money and other
items, the reason for their departure became genuine, thus: they ran away to
avoid being punished for their actions. But behind this, the underling truth is
that the girls had been embarrassed by my neighbour who would warn them to leave
her loosed husband. Recently, the woman threatened to f…
The name Nkalaha is a
coinage which stands for a people occupying a geographical land and regional
setting in the eastern part of Nigeria. It is a coinage which attempts to
explain the direction of movement and adventure of the men who founded the
community in the 15th century AD. According to oral sources and some
documentation about this community, some of these men were believed to have
traveled from Ida, old Benue state of Nigeria to inhabit the land. These men
had traveled on different days to locate the place. Onojah who originally
founded the land was said to have been in a deep search for a place of safety
as he was besieged by a fate that appeared to make him somewhat incompatible
with his own people. Nkalaha
is one of the communities that make up Ishielu Local Government Area of Ebonyi
State. Nkalaha occupied the northern part of Ishielu Local Government Area. She
is located through the zip 135.031.000. The community sits on 923.768km2. She shares boundaries with neighbourin…
The Mystery of
Number, “Five” in the Igbo Cosmology.From: Aspects
of the Ancient African Metaphysics;Chapter: Seven;Topic: Igbo
Geometries and the Metaphysics of Numbers.Author: Onyeji
Nnaji. In the Igbo
cosmology, the word Isee is a definite symbolic word as revealed through
the Igbo language and culture. A human being has five fingers, five toes. The
hands and feet are fundamentals to the survival in life as they are necessary
in ensuring that man moves to places where he gets food and grapples on the
food to sustain his life. To this view, the rhetoric that binds vocatives in
the form of incantation (anchoring on the heart-lock: four) and the
concomitant reprisal in the manner of affirmation that holds the human life
bind to his original spiritual person, therefore defining existence and
essences are unified by the corresponding echo: Isee!!!!! Therefore
it stands that anytime a prayer is said in the Igbo land, the attendants who would
want the fulfillment of the prayer unanimously …
INTRODUCTION One thing that made Udi remarkable is the indubitable
legacy adopted in commemoration of the legendry fighter, Uto at Nsude. It was one
of the greatest contributions of the descendants of Agbaja to the survival of
Nsukka civilization of memory. Uto held from Oshie. Uto dies of small pox after
a mercenary battle he was hired to fight in the ancient Benin. His body was buried
in the evil forest as the tradition demanded. Although he lived no longer, the
stepped pyramids above were adopted to commemorate the lasting peace he brought
to the entire Oshie and Udi nation of people. Another remarkable thing about Udi is the
fertility of the land. This has contributed widely in sustaining the
inhabitants and provided a name for the inhabitants in the manner of Abakaliki,
Umudike, Ogbaru, Igboariam, Ohaji, Uzouwani, etc., especially in Amofia-Agu,
Affa. Udi is a land of great rivers and springs: Adaada, Ajali, Oji, Aria,
Nvenu, Ngene Evu, Iyi Ububo, etc. as was the situation every…
There are four generations…, and the fourth generation, which is the most exalted, is kingless and perfect. These people will enter the holy place of their Father and they will reside in rest … They are kings. They are the immortal within the mortal (The Nag Hammadi, 219)
Also read Nsukka Civilization: The Peopling of Ancient Nsukka One of the African homes that colonialism has completely deformed beyond certain level of recognition is Nsukka. Colonialism apart, the most affecting factor to the survival of the meaning which the rich cultural enclave, Nsukka, carries will best be blamed on postcolonial political structure. The biggest harm all these have against Nsukka as a people is that they rubbed her of the meaning of her name; their place of origin; how their fathers managed to come into their present abodes and who their ancestors were. A profound understanding of the excerpt above will open the door towards deciphering the meaning and origin of the people called Nsukka. Geographica…
by Onyeji Nnaji Eha-Amufu
road newly constructed by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu state in 2019 Apart from the strategic location of the
Federal College of Education, one central reason remarkable about Eha-Amufu is
her central position and her boundary situation. Eha-Amufu stands at the centre
of many communities; as a result she has served as the gateway to different
communities. She is bounded to Nkalaha, Agala, Ikem, Umuero and other
communities, including Obeagu (pronounced Ubegu). Aside from that, Eha-Amufu embodies
the route that traces the way to the northern part of Nigeria for travellers
travelling from Ebonyi axis. Eha-Amufu also forms the remarkable boundary
community between Enugu State and Ebonyi State. This situation makes Eha-Amufu
very strategic in the discussion of the road and rivers across Ebonyi and
In the era when transportation on rail was
the order of the day, the most popular then ‘Express Train and later Diesel
Train’ and also the ‘local goods train’…