The Council of the Royal Institute of British Architects has voted to call on the International Union Of Architects to exclude the Israeli Association of United Architects over its refusal to oppose Israel’s construction of illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian territory.(BDS) After a tough and passionate Council debate on 19 March 2014, the pillar of the UK’s architects’ professional association, the RIBA , passed the motion supporting action that should be taken by the International Union Of Architects’ to suspend the Israeli Association of United Architects (IAUA) from the world body of architects, the UIA. The Motion was passed by 23 votes to 16 with 10 abstentions. The vote follows a similar motion earlier in the week by the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS).
The campaign initiated and worked for over seven years by Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine (APJP) was brought to fruition by great teamwork and by the courageous action of the RIBA’s past President Angela Brady and active Council members George Oldham and Owen O’Carroll who tabled the motion signed by many RIBA members and registered architects including leading lights in the profession that included Charles Jencks, Ted Cullinan , Will Alsop, Peter Ahrends and Neave Brown.
The building of illegal settlements against Article 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention which prohibits the transfer of a civilian population into territory occupied by force is considered a serious breach and thus as war crimes in which Israeli architects are closely involved. This settlement expansion has resulted in the forced removal or thousands of Palestinians and expropriation of their homes and land, and the erasure of their culture and history that has been going on since 1967 with impunity despite repeated world wide condemnation.
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