Coalition for Justice & Peace in Palestine

Sydney, Australia

Palestinian Refugees

In May 1948, following the partition of Palestine, over 750,000 Palestinians – three-quarters of the population – were driven by force from their homes and land by the creation of the State of Israel in a country called Palestine. The Palestinians call this Al-Nakba (“the catastrophe”). 

There is today a worldwide Palestinian population of 10.5 million, of which an estimated 7.1 million (approximately 67 percent) are refugees – this constitutes the world’s largest refugee population.  Many of these refugees continue to live in refugee camps in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and the Occupied Palestinian Territories (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza Strip), for over three generations since 1948. More than 5 million Palestinian refugees live outside Israel or the OPT.

The right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes is guaranteed in United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 (1948), which…

Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation shoudl be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for the loss of or dmage to property which, under principles of international law or inequity, should be made good by the governments or authorities responsible.
[United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194, III, Para. 11, 11 Dec. 1948]

The Palestinian refugees have yet to see the implemenation of UN Resolution 194.

Furthermore, the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes has been deemed “inalienable” by United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3236 (1974) – this means that the Palestinian right of return is a non-negotiable Right of all Palestinians.

1. Reaffirms the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people in Palestine, including:
(a) The right to self-determination without external interference;
(b) The right to national independence and sovereignty;
2. Reaffirms also the inalienable right of the Palestinians to return to their homes and property from which they have been displaced and uprooted, and calls for their return…
[United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3236 (XXIX), 22 November 1974]

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RESOURCES

United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees

United Nations Informations System on The Question of Palestine

Badil Resource Centre for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights

Global Palestine Right of Return Coalition [website in Arabic]

Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition

Palestinian Refugee Research Net (PRRN)

Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine Inc.

PO Box 144
Glebe NSW 2037
Australia
cjpp@coalitionfor
palestine.org

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