Human rights defender
Yamen is a human rights defender from Gaza. He is the head supervisor of a team of fieldworkers tasked with monitoring and documenting violations of International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law in the region. The organisation also provides legal assistance and advice to victims and potential victims; including by litigation in the occupied territory, Israel and abroad. In addition, it maintains close relations with human rights networks, coalitions and working groups at the local and international levels, collaborating with UN agencies and mechanisms, NGOs and human rights NGOs.
Current climate in Gaza
The situation in the Gaza strip has been volatile since 2007, and Israel’s restrictions on the freedom of movement and outgoing goods have severely impinged on the rights of the civilian population. Gaza’s isolation has destroyed its economy and rendered its population impoverished, unemployed and without access to basic health care and electricity. Since the Palestinian’s ‘Great March of Return’ on March 30, Israeli forces have killed more than 100 protesters in Gaza and wounded thousands with live ammunition.
Threats and harassment
Yamen’s workplace has been subjected to continuous harassment, intimidation and threats following its cooperation with an international Court in the aftermath of the 2014 Israel military operation “Operation Protective Edge” which left over two thousand Palestinians dead. Defamation followed in the form of suspicious emails, Facebook posts, phone calls to staff and donors relaying false allegations about the integrity of the organisation. Yamen is facing pressure and is working day and night.