Gaza: Check all that apply: Human Rights Day edition

Marking the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, let us see which of these articles apply to Gaza

(Photo: Twitter/X)

Since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948, the same year that Palestinians were expelled from their homes, the UN declares that this document is a milestone for human rights, however, who gets benefits from these human rights?

And in an even more ironic twist, this year, the theme is freedom, equality, and justice for all.

So let us look at if this applies to Gaza, check all the boxes below if they do, and tally up your score at the end.

Article 1:
All human beings are free and equal in dignity and rights.
For some, nearly half, 47 percent of Gaza’s population are under 18, and in an Instagram post by Plestia, “I am 22 years old today, that means I am four aggressions and a war old.” Gaza, which has been deemed as an open-air prison, asks the question, who is free, and who is equal?

اضافة اعلان


A post shared by Plestia Alaqad | بلستيا العقاد (@byplestia)

Article 9
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention, or exile
At the end of September 2023, according to B’Tselem, Israel Prison Services (IPS) was holding 4,764 Palestinians in detention or prison on what it defined as ‘security’ grounds, including 176 from the Gaza Strip. Many of its prisoners have been detained without a reason, or a cause, and are subjected to torture, beatings, and psychological manipulation by Israeli guards.

Article 13


  1. Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state
  2. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country

Over 1.8 million Gazans have been internally displaced in Gaza. And no, Palestinians can’t just leave Gaza. While Israeli Occupation Forces have created ‘safe zones’ for Gazans to flee to, those so-called ‘safe zones’ have also been targeted, in conclusion, there is nowhere safe for them to go.

Article 26

  1. Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all based on merit.
  2. Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance, and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.
  3. Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

217 schools in Gaza have been destroyed, risking the lives of tens of thousands of children to have an education or even a future.

How many of these have you checked off? If you, like myself, checked off zero, then you are correct. How do we celebrate 75 years of human rights when tens of thousands of innocent Palestinian civilians are being killed in name and disorder under Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s draconian government?

Since October 7, the United Nations has been merely a name rather than a driving force for making actual change. While UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres referred to Article 99 in its rare usage during a recent Security Council meeting, it was a stark reminder that U.S. interests or its veto power can override the articles intended to protect Palestinian civilians.

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