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The United Methodist General Conference 2024:
Legislation on Israel/Palestine
See SUMMARIES of the legislation on the right side of this page.▶︎
🔸 New or Recently Updated
Addressing Israeli Detention of Children
Every year, hundreds of Palestinian children are detained by Israeli military forces, taken out of occupied territory into Israel, interrogated without any adult to help them, and physically abused. This treatment of Palestinian children has been documented over decades by world-respected organizations.
The United States is the only member of the United Nations that has not ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child. In recent years, legislation has been introduced in the U.S. Congress to prevent US military aid from financing Israeli military abuse of Palestinian children.
This resolution calls on the General Board of Church and Society (GBCS), in consultation with Global Ministries (GBGM) and United Methodist Women (UMW), to formulate recommendations for how United Methodists can take action on this issue, and in particular, how to advocate with lawmakers and leaders worldwide and especially in the United States.See the full resolution
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child mean little in many countries
where children are imprisoned and abused.
In this resolution, the UMC formally endorses the application of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as it relates to incarcerated children. The church charges GBCS, in consultation with GBGM and UMW, to formulate recommendations for United Methodists to engage in education and action on this issue. See the full resolution
Protecting the Right to Peacefully Address Injustice
Boycotts have been useful tools for social change, used by the UMC and other religious communities. Boycott campaigns are an expression of our political beliefs and are a protected form of speech in the US and many other nations. Today, that right to free speech is under attack. Laws are being adopted that would impose penalties on individuals and businesses for engaging in boycott, divestment and sanctions campaigns that pertain to Israel or Israeli policies.
The United Methodist Church has called for a global ban on products from Israeli settlements in occupied territory. Wespath, the church’s Board of Pensions, has put five Israeli banks on a ‘No Buy’ list.
In this resolution, the UMC “opposes any interference by any local, regional, or national government in our right to address injustice through nonviolent economic means.” The church also urges all members and church bodies to contact local and national government leaders to advocate against this suppression of our rights. See the full resolution
Opposition to Israeli Settlements in Palestinian Land
This seminal resolution of the UMC is due to expire this year unless renewed by the General Conference. It describes the conditions of the Israeli occupation and states the UMC position:
“The United Methodist Church opposes continued military occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem, and also the Syrian Golan Heights, the confis-cation of Palestinian land and water resources, the destruction of Palestinian homes, the continued blockade of Gaza where over half the residents are children, the military detention of Palestinian children — often without trial — the continued building of illegal Jewish settlements, and any vision of a “Greater Israel” that includes the occupied territories and the whole of Jerusalem and its surroundings.”
The actions this resolution calls for include: a global ban on importing products from Israeli settlements, an end to all arms sales to the region and all arms purchases from there, a redistribution of the large military aid given to Israel and Egypt to fund humanitarian work such as UNRWA’s, and all companies to stop any business activities that support ongoing military occupation.
United Nations Resolutions on the Israel-Palestine Conflict
This Resolution is another that would expire this year. It draws upon the core principles of international law and U.N. resolutions as the basis for equality and just peace for all in Israel/Palestine.
In this resolution, the church calls upon “the United States and all members of the UN Security Council, to accept the authority of Security Council resolutions, to refrain from vetoing resolutions, and abide by Security Council Resolutions 242, 338, and 2334, as well as all other relevant UN resolutions and International Court of Justice rulings that provide a framework for bringing this conflict to a just and permanent end.”
Exclude Government Debt of Countries Involved in Prolonged Military Occupations
This resolution focuses on three prolonged military occupations that are in violation of international law: Turkey's occupation of Northern Cyprus, Morocco's occupation of Western Sahara, and Israel's occupation of Palestinian territory.
All of these occupations deny the occupied population their right to self-determination. and United Nations bodies have called for them to end. The resolution calls for United Methodist board, agencies and investment managers to exclude investment in the government bonds of these three occupying powers.
Petition #20267supports the above resolution. Calls for amending the UMC Book of Discipline, Paragraph 717:"Sustainable and Socially Responsible Investment." Paragraph 717 lays out some of the UMC's major investment policies. Petition #20267 would add the following text to that paragraph: "United Methodist institutions should similarly not hold sovereign or government debt in states conducting prolonged military occupations as they violate international law and human rights standards."
SUMMARIES OF LEGISLATION
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