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Denounce Arab Lawyers Union honoring suicide bomber

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In October 2012, the Palestine Committee of the Arab Lawyers Union (ALU) awarded its "highest honor . . . in esteem for any lawyer in the Arab Homeland" to female Palestinian suicide bomber and law student Hanadi Jaradat. In 2003, Jaradat left the legal profession by blowing herself up at the Maxim restaurant in Haifa, Israel, killing 21 and injuring more than 50. Among the deceased were three children and an infant.

Palestine Committee member Ayman Abu Eisheh saidthat the Arab lawyers were "proud of what Jaradat did 'in defense of Palestine and the Arab conflict.'"

The ALU's homepage states that its membership includes bar associations in 15 countries and 27 affiliated organizations. It is in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), consultative status with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and is affiliated with the International Labour Organization (ILO) as well as other regional, national, and international bodies.

The sheer hypocrisy of a lawyers' association blatantly celebrating any clear violation of the law, let alone a deadly terror attack, is staggering. In bestowing this award, the ALU -- composed of more than 200,000 lawyers and purportedly committed to "promot[ing] and protect[ing] human rights" -- is attempting to obscure (or perhaps justify) the illegality of the attack, classifying a criminal act as lawyer-endorsed measure taken "in defense of Palestine." In essence, the ALU is rejecting the (basic) responsibility it shares with the global legal community to uphold the rule of law.

We, The Lawfare Project and other members of the legal community, urge ECOSOC, UNESCO, ILO, and other organizations affiliated with the ALU to sever official ties with the latter, as well as to publicly denounce the ALU's decision to praise a suicide attack.


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