Palestine Conference 2024: We Accuse!

From April 12th to 14th, the Palestine Conference will take place in Berlin. Under the motto "We accuse", activists, along with voices from the Palestinian and Jewish movements, as well as the international community, aim to bring charges against Israeli apartheid, genocide, and German complicity. In January of this year, the International Court of Justice (ICJ, in response to a complaint filed by South Africa, found that there was a plausible case of the most serious crime of genocide committed by Israel against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Karin de Rigo (MERA25/DIEM25), one of the congress's speakers, commented:

"The Genocide Convention requires states to ensure they do not become complicit. However, Germany continues to provide diplomatic, military, and financial support to Israel. Yet, the German government's response to the ICJ's ruling has been to blindly adhere to the policy of raison d'etat, rather than following international law. With its support of genocide, Germany is increasingly isolating itself on the international stage."De Rigo draws attention to the international debate and highlights the peculiarity of the German discourse, which systematically suppresses voices of Palestinians and those in solidarity with Palestine.

In the face of an unprecedented smear campaign, politically driven and supported by the media, the congress is confronted with an extraordinary challenge. "Our guests, including prominent figures such as Yanis Varoufakis and Richard Boyd Barrett, are being defamed and attacked," emphasizes Wieland Hoban, chairman of the Jewish Voice for Just Peace in the Middle East.

Today, Ghassan Abu Sitteh, a Palestinian doctor specializing in plastic and reconstructive surgery, and the Rector of the University of Glasgow were also denied entry into Germany at Berlin Airport. During the horrors of the Israeli bombardment of Gaza, Abu Sitteh spent 43 days in Gaza with Doctors Without Borders, working at the Al-Shifa Hospital. He wanted to share his experiences at the congress. It is scandalous that such an important voice against genocide in Gaza is denied the opportunity to enter Germany and speak at this crucial congress.

Particularly alarming is the massive presence of 2,500 police officers for an event with less than 1,000 participants. Since the early hours of the morning, the authorities have actively hindered the setup, preparations, and even the opening of the congress. The recent incidents add to a troubling series. "Following the closure of the Jewish Voice's account by the Sparkasse, this is another case of unlawful repression," Hoban added.

The Palestine Conference provides a platform for the exchange of ideas, perspectives, and concrete actions. In addition to keynote speakers, panels, and workshops, it also serves as a space for networking and strengthening the movement. Together, we will adopt a joint resolution to address political repression and end the oppression of the Palestinian people.

Furthermore, the congress calls for an international day of action: on April 14th, demonstrations will take place worldwide at German embassies, consulates, official German institutions, as well as at the International Criminal Court and UN sites in New York and Geneva. We accuse! Convict and punish members of the German Federal Security Council and their accomplices for supporting genocide.

Palästina Kongress

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Why are we accusing Germany of being complicit in genocide?

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled in January of this year that the case brought against Israel by South Africa, supported by 50 states, plausibly argues that the most serious crime of genocide is being committed by Israel against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Today, preliminary hearings begin before the ICJ in a case seeking to end Germany's military support for Israel and charging Germany with complicity in an ongoing genocide. The Genocide Convention requires states to ensure they do not become complicit. Under international law, any transfer of weapons or ammunition to Israel used in Gaza is considered a violation of international law. However, Germany continues to provide diplomatic, military, and financial support to Israel. Therefore, during the Palestine Congress (April 12-14 in Berlin), we, together with voices from the Palestinian movement and the international community, will condemn against Israeli apartheid, genocide, and German complicity.

The Palestinians are experiencing genocide. Israel is destroying Gaza and its population. Approximately 70 percent of those killed are women and children. As of March 29, 2024, 32,623 Palestinians have been killed since the start of the Israeli military assault on Gaza in October 2023. 1.9 million people have been displaced, suffering from a man-made famine, lacking access to clean water and medicine. Infrastructure, hospitals, universities, schools, administrative buildings, and residential blocks have been bombed.

We call on the international community and the German government to act in accordance with the decisions of the International Court of Justice. We demand the immediate cessation of all military, diplomatic, and economic support for Israel by the German state. We urge the German government to impose a comprehensive military embargo on Israel and actively work towards an immediate ceasefire and the withdrawal of the Israeli army. Stop the genocide!

While Israel has a significant arms industry, it also relies on international imports of weapons and weapons systems to carry out its operations. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Germany was the second-largest supplier of "major conventional weapons" to Israel in 2023, accounting for 47% of Israel's total imports, second only to the USA with 53%. In 2023 alone, the governing coalition approved arms deliveries worth 326.5 million euros to Israel - ten times as much as the previous year.

However, we declare that Israel's actions in Gaza are reprehensible and cannot be justified. Looking at opinion polls, the majority of people in Germany want Israel to stop killing and starving Palestinians in Gaza. There is no legitimate reason for arms deliveries to Israel. German arms exports should be stopped immediately!

Yet, the German government is doing the opposite: it keeps the doors wide open to the arms industry in the genocide against the Palestinians. As shown in Forensic's research, between 2003 and 2023, the German government approved a total of 4,427 individual export licences for various military equipment, more than half of which were weapons of war. In the same period, only 54 export licences were rejected, resulting in an approval rate of 99.75 percent. Companies such as GmbH, Rheinmetall AG, RENK Group AG, MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH, Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Krauss-Maffei Wegmann GmbH & Co. KG, Hensoldt AG, Heckler & Koch GmbH, Grob Aircraft SE, German Naval Yards Holdings GmbH, EuroSpike GmbH, Dynamit Nobel Defence GmbH, Diehl Defence GmbH & Co. KG, Daimler Truck Holding AG, Atlas Elektronik GmbH, and AIM Infrared Modules GmbH, including ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems, benefit from this support of the German arms industry, which profits from an ongoing genocide. The government must immediately halt this support!

We support the Berlin lawyers (supported by the Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy, the European Legal Support Centre, and Law for Palestine) who, on behalf of Palestinians, seek an emergency injunction from the Berlin Administrative Court to stop arms exports to Israel. The judgement of the International Court of Justice and the global movement in solidarity with Palestine are having slow but visible effects on international arms deliveries to Israel. In recent months, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, and Canada, among others, have taken steps to halt military exports to Israel, either for specific items or all weapons. The UN Human Rights Council has also called for a halt to arms sales to Israel in light of the situation in the Gaza Strip. However, the USA and Germany, Israel's major arms suppliers, have rejected the resolution.

The German government's current response is to adhere blindly to the policy of “raison d'état”, increasingly isolating Germany internationally. While Germany continues to provide full support to Israel, despite the International Court of Justice declaring the situation in the Gaza Strip a plausible case of genocide, the government seeks to suppress the protest movement against it with massive pressure. We will not allow the voices for a just peace in the Middle East to be silenced. We will continue to protest and advocate for an end to the genocide and for Germany to end all complicity in the decades-long oppression of the Palestinian people by Israel!

Palästina Kongress

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German Bank confiscates funds from Jewish organization

In an act of arbitrariness, Berliner Sparkasse Bank arranged for the account of Jüdische Stimme to be blocked on March 26, 2024. Among other things, the bank demanded lists with the names and addresses of the members of one of Germany's largest Jewish associations. If this was not complied with, the account would be closed.

We strongly condemn the blocking of the account and the illegal demands made by Berliner Sparkasse against Jüdische Stimme.

The Jüdische Stimme (Jewish Voice) stated:

"As a corporation under public law, the Sparkasse is bound by public law and may not arbitrarily block accounts without justifying it [...]" and further that the bank's demands sound like demands "from the Stat Criminal Police (LKA) or the police, who have been politically persecuting us as a Jewish organization for quite some time."

This measure not only represents a further attack on Jewish organizations in Germany. It is also linked to the threats made by German politicians against the Palestine Conference (12-14 April in Berlin). The Jewish Voice had made its bank account available for donations and ticket sales.

High-ranking Berlin politicians and members of the government have threatened to ban the conference. Leading German media slandered the connference as anti-Semitic without reporting that Jews and an Jewish organization were significantly involved in the organization and implementation of the congress.

Interior Senator Iris Spranger (SPD) announced that the authorities were keeping an eye on the planned "Palestine Kongress", while CDU parliamentary group leader Dirk Stettner demanded that even if it was legally impossible to ban the conference, everything possible should be done to prevent it.

The unfounded account suspension marks a new level of escalation after the unfounded house searches of the past few days in the repression against the conference in particular and the attacks on democratic rights in general.

The German state is using arbitrary means that operate in a legal vacuum. This is a further development of the authoritarian traits of German politics that must be decisively pushed back.

The fact that this arbitrariness has now reached the climax of blocking Jewish accounts with the help of German banks also exposes the racism and increased violence of the German state against Palestinians and racially discriminated groups in recent months. These, according to the official line of German government politicians, are carried out to supposedly "protect Jewish life". By criminalizing the Jewish voice, they increasingly expose themselves as a pretext to justify the increasingly racist German domestic policy and an aggressive, belligerent German foreign policy.

The Palestine Congress will take place despite this criminalization! We stand by the side of our Jewish friends. We demand the immediate withdrawal of the measures against them. Together, from April 12-14, we will denounce the German government for its complicity in the genocide in Gaza, as well as for its racism and restriction of democratic rights at home.

Solidarity Against Repression and Possible Ban of the Palestine Conference 2024 in Berlin


From April 12th to 14th, the Palestine Conference is scheduled to take place in Berlin. Its aim is to raise public awareness about the ongoing violations of international law by the Israeli military in Gaza and German complicity, as well as to provide a platform for networking within the movement ( However, much is at stake: the congress is facing massive pressure, which could lead to a ban, repression, withdrawal of venues, and entry bans for international guests.

The intentions of German politics to ban or hinder the conference represent a clear political threat to freedom of expression and align with the increasing repression against the Palestine solidarity movement.

Senator for the Interior, Iris Spranger (SPD), stated that the authorities are monitoring the planned "Palestine Conference," while CDU faction leader Dirk Stettner demands that everything must be done to prevent the alleged "anti-Semitic event." It is scandalous that an event involving Palestinian and international guests, as well as the Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East and other renowned, international Jewish speakers, is being defamed in this way.

In recent months and years, we have observed how Palestine demonstrations - whether organized by Palestinians, anti-Zionist Jews, or supportive individuals - are systematically banned, how police violence against demonstrators at Palestine demonstrations is increasing massively, and how the withdrawal of venues and media smear campaigns show no end.

While the German government shamelessly supports genocide before the eyes of the world, democratic rights are undermined here in Germany to silence protests for a ceasefire. Freedom of assembly, freedom of organization, freedom of the press, and academic freedom have been massively restricted. In this context, we also see the attempt to ban the Palestine Congress. It is an attack on democratic rights and an attempt at international understanding!

And Germany is not the only state attempting to criminalize Palestine solidarity, as the phenomenon has gained momentum in countries like Britain or France: active Palestine solidarity has become the target of repressive legislation in different ways. The concept of freedom of speech is being questioned in Europe, paradoxically in the name of a country that increasingly upholds international law and human rights rhetorically with astonishing arrogance.

Therefore, we demand that the state of Berlin cease its efforts to ban this congress and stop the repressions against the Palestine conference . Freedom of speech and assembly must be defended.

It is up to us in the Palestine solidarity movement to vehemently oppose any form of repression and censorship

Palästina Kongress

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