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Preface 

 
 

The associations working with Palestinians are divided into 4 categories, as follows:

  

1.      Lebanese institutions, licensed through the Lebanese Ministry of Interior and Municipalities according to a notification announcement, as per the Ottoman Law of Associations of 1909, and based upon law-decree no. 10830 issued in October 1962.

 

2.      Foreign institutions having Lebanese branches, licensed according to a presidential decree, as per the Foreign Association Law (decision no. 369) issued on December 21, 1939.

 

3.      Religious institutions affiliated to the Islamic Waqf and that do not require a license from the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities, but rather operate according to a “religious proof” that they obtain from one of the religious courts directly affiliated to the Presidency of the Council of Ministers. For instance, the NGO Ataa’ (Giving), headquartered in Rashidieh camp in Tyre, was established in 1994, and obtained a religious proof from the court of Tyre under no. 30/3.

 

4.      Unlicensed Palestinian institutions, agencies and associations that operate according to their internal regulations and special programs.

 

                                                                          Law in force

 

The right to establish or join associations constitutes one of the pillars of the democratic system. The key international instruments that Lebanon has ratified with regard to the right to establish associations are set as follows:

 

-          Article 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;

-          Article 22 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

-          Article 8 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;

 -          Article 5 (d) of the Philadelphia Declaration.

On the local level, the Lebanese Constitution provided for the freedom of association and the right to assembly, whereby article 13 of the Lebanese Constitution literally stipulated the following:The freedom to express one's opinion orally and in writing, the freedom of the press, the freedom of assembly, and the freedom of association shall be guaranteed within the limits established by law.”

 

Whereas the (Lebanese) associations can be established by a simple agreement among its founders and their signing on its Statutes and Bylaws, without the need to obtain any prior authorization from the authorities, the establishment of foreign associations - including Palestinian associations – and the establishment of related branches as well as the amendment of statutes and bylaws are subject to decision no. 369 issued on December 21, 1939, i.e. to the prior authorization regulation, and is therefore not complying with the general principle that only requires the association to submit a notification announcement to the competent authorities

.

 

                                                       Current Situation and Numbers

 

 

The agencies and associations working for Palestine refugees in Lebanon amount to 213 associations until 2012, with different sizes and abilities.

 

Numbers of associations and their basic fields of work until 2012

Number

Type of Association

108

General Associations

16

Unions and Syndicates

42

Sports Associations

27

Kindergartens and Educational Centres

18

Popular and Civil Committees

2

Miscellaneous

213

Total

Types, activities and services, and main objectives of the Palestinian associations in Lebanon

Main Objectives

Activities and Services

Type of Association

-Developing their educational, cultural and creativity capacities.

 

-Promoting equality in terms of opportunities, rights and responsibilities.

 

-Developing the sense of volunteering spirit and the national and team spirt amongst them.

 

-Learning to accept others and improve the relations with the entourage.

-Communicating with the youth in order to keep them away from social problems.

 

-Fostering their cultural, educational, sports-related, and scouts activities.

Youth

- Linking the independent organizations to the youth.

 

- Linking student offices or movements within the factions to the youth.

 

- Enhancing the cooperation and collective work among active clubs.

Sports

Clubs

- Raising awareness in the local communities regarding the rights, protection and support of the child.

 

- National upbringing and fighting for the right of return and self-determination.

- Preparing the children to enroll in schools.

 

- Social, health and scientific education.

 

- Prevention of disgraceful behaviors.

 

Children

- Raising awareness in the Palestinian community with regard to women rights, in order to reach gender equality in terms of rights and obligations, as well as increase the contribution of women to the development process.

-Empowering women and improving their organizational, social and political capacities.

 

- Developing the technical and vocational capacities of women, in order to improve their economic situations.

Women

-Providing health care and social services to Palestinian refugees.

 

- Covering the services not provided by UNRWA in this regard.

 

 

-Providing financial assistance after hospitalization in order to help the patients.

 

-Establishing medical centers in different specialties in order to offer medical services and medications.

Health services

-Raising awareness in the Palestinian community about the rights of persons with disabilities.

 

- Promoting the chances of their participation and integration in the community.

-Improving their performance.

 

- Providing specialized services in terms of education and rehabilitation.

Persons with disabilities

-Raising awareness within the community regarding the importance of taking care of the elderly.

 

-Offering productive projects for the elderly.

 

-Providing social services aiming at supporting the elderly.

Elderly

- Contributing to the provision of a decent life to the families of martyrs and injured persons.

-Assisting the families to improve their socio- economic situation.

Families of martyrs and wounded persons

-Motivating the Palestinian community to use creative ideas.

- Raising awareness in the community about the importance of culture in public life.

-Adopting modern means and techniques aiming at upgrading the cultural and artistic work.

Culture

-Raising awareness about the importance of defending the Palestinian identity and cause.

 

-Reviving the Palestinian cause among the youth through awareness and cultural campaigns.

 

- Preserving the customs, traditions and culture prevailing in the Palestinian community.

-Documenting and preserving the Palestinian memory for the coming generations.

 

-Bringing out and preserving the Palestinian heritage in order to serve the Palestinian cause.

Palestinian rights

-Educating about and defending human rights, especially children and women rights, at the social, economic and cultural levels.

 

- Informing the Palestinians of their rights and the ways to protect these rights in

a peaceful manner.

-Securing the rights of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, especially their rights to work, and organizing the refugees according to their professions, as well as coordinating with the Lebanese syndicates in this regar

Human Rights  

The Problem

 
 

In spite of the law’s acknowledgement of the right to establish associations, the practical problems of confronting the Palestinian civil activity remain an issue. In this context, the LPDC, with the support of the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities, is striving to settle the situation of the Lebanese associations involved in the Palestinian affairs, which operate in unregulated or illegal ways on one side, and to facilitate granting licenses to Palestinian associations through the issuance of decrees by the Lebanese Council of Ministers, as stipulated by decision no. 369 issued on 21/12/1939, and circular no. 13/2014 issued on August 26, 2014.

 

 

LPDC Priority

 

LPDC has long considered the right to establish associations as a sacred right provided for in the Lebanese Constitution. For this purpose, the LPDC has launched a legal study in 2012, based on a field questionnaire, titled: “Facilitating the registration of Palestinian Associations in Lebanon: A right for Palestinians and an obligation of the host country”. 

              
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