*Please take a moment to write to your representatives and ask them to do more to protect Palestinian refugees living in Iraq who have become the latest target of Shiite death squads threatening to kill them, many have already been kidnapped and killed. Most recently Shiites have dropped leaflets in Palestinian neighborhoods with the following warning, “We warn you that we will eliminate you all if you don’t leave the area for good within 10 days.” Palestinians trying to escape are trapped at the Iraqi/Jordanian border after the Jordanian government closed the border to prevent them entry. Those Palestinians are now stuck in an extremely dangerous part of Iraq referred to as “no man’s land,” and they do not have water, food or shelter. A Palestinian diplomat in Baghdad who did not want to be named told the press that it is now routine to find several Palestinians a week in the morgue.
*While Palestinian refugees in Iraq were not allowed to own land or become Iraqi citizens in the past, most benefited from subsidized housing and free education. Remind your representatives that as an occupying power the United States has a responsibility under the Geneva Conventions to protect Palestinian civilians from human rights abuses. Tell your representatives that they must stop ignoring the plight of refugees in Iraq and occupied Palestine. There are an estimated 34,000 Palestinians in Iraq, of whom 23,000 have been registered by UNHCR in Baghdad. Emmanuel Gignac of UNHCR’s Iraq Support Unit in Geneva says that, “They (Palestinians) are feeling increasingly trapped, and for security reasons many have stopped going to work and have taken their children out of school. We know very well that life for other Iraqis is very difficult as well at the moment. The Palestinians feel, however, especially vulnerable and targeted as they were perceived to have been treated favorably by the previous regime.”
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WHITE HOUSE COMMENTS LINE: 202-456-1111
WHITE HOUSE SWITCHBOARD: 202-456-1414
WHITE HOUSE FAX: 202-456-2461
Citizens for Fair Legislation