Palestine Social Structure Part II

Official name: Palestinian territories

Area: 6,025 km² (5,660 km² WB, 365 km² Gaza)

Residents: 4.98 million (2.99 million WB, 1.99 million Gaza)

Growth of population: 2.5% per year (2019)

Seat of government: Ramallah

Official language: Arabic

Regional languages: –

At just 15.4% compared to 66.6% for men in the 3rd quarter of 2020, the employment rate for women is among the lowest in the world.

One fifth of all women in Palestine marry before the age of 18, with various negative physical and psychological effects for the girls. In 2016, the proportion of early marriages was 42.1% in Gaza administrative district and 36.8% in Hebron administrative district. In 2019, the Palestinian Authority passed a law that raised the minimum age for marriage to 18 for women and men. Previously it was 15 for women in the West Bank and 16 for men, and 17 for women and 18 for men in Gaza.

Due to the very difficult economic and political situation, the violence against women, which is also found in social media on the Internet, has increased, as has the number of “honor killings”. The Palestinian NGO Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling (WCLAC) documented 24 killings in 2019, 6 in the Gaza Strip and 18 in the West Bank, as did Amnesty International.

To combat violence against women, a National Committee was created in 2008 in which various governmental and non-governmental organizations and institutions work together under the direction of the Palestinian Ministry for Women’s Affairs. This committee worked with UN Women Palestine to develop a national strategy to combat violence against women. A veöffentlichte in March 2019 study came to the conclusion that women and girls with disabilities are most affected by violence compared to their male peers with disabilities and to girls and women without disabilities. The violence can also create a new disability or worsen an existing one.

According to THEMOTORCYCLERS, there is a legal disadvantage for women in the applicable religious personal status rights, which are not in accordance with, among other things, Article 9 of the amended Palestinian Basic Law, which establishes gender equality.

The percentage of people with disabilities in Palestine is 2.1% of the population, or 92,710 people, based on data from the 2017 census, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS). 48% of these people live in the West Bank, 52% in the Gaza Strip. 50.8% of these people have limited mobility. The second largest group are people with visual impairment. They make up 31.2% of all people with disabilities in Palestine. In 2020, according to the PCBS, 12.3% of all people between the ages of 2 and 17 in Palestine had a disability (13.4% in the West Bank, 10.8% in the Gaza Strip). 10% of all minors between 5 and 17 years of age with a disability do not go to school and 69% of all boys at this age.

The Palestinian Basic Law of 2003 explicitly mentions people with disabilities in Article 9 of the right to equality and explicitly includes people with disabilities in Article 22 of the right to education. In addition, in 1999 the Palestinian Legislative Council passed Law No. 4 regarding the rights of persons with disabilities. In 2012, a national strategic framework for improving the situation of disabled people in Palestine was adopted. In 2014, the Palestinian Authority acceded to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and created a National Committee on People with Disabilities. However, people with disabilities in Palestine are still marginalized and faced with barriers to participation in social and economic life.

According to a study from the year 2011. 37.6% (35.5% in the West Bank and 42.2% in Gaza Strip) of all people with disabilities who never visited 15 years or older, a school. 33.8% (37.0% in the West Bank and 27.1% in the Gaza Strip) dropped out of school. 53.1% (51.5% in the West Bank and 56.3% in the Gaza Strip) are illiterate. 87.3% (85.6% in the West Bank and 90.9% in the Gaza Strip) do not work.

Gender diversity / LGBTQI * / homosexuality

Palestinian society is conservative and traditional in many ways and is fundamentally opposed to homosexuality. The negative reactions range from social exclusion to physical violence. In addition, homosexuality is a socially taboo subject. Palestinian political organizations avoid the issue of LGBTQI * rights. Nevertheless, there are organizations that try to improve the situation for LGBTQI * in Palestine, among other things through legal advice and psychological support and a few people who openly acknowledge their homosexuality.

In the West Bank, same-sex sex was decriminalized in 1951 and is still so today. In the Gaza Strip, Ordinance 74 of the Penal Code from the 1936 British mandate is still in force. Section 152 (2) of the Act provides for a prison sentence of up to 10 years for sexual acts between men. Women are not affected. But the social taboo is more important than the legal prohibition.

There are no laws protecting LGBTQI * against discrimination or harassment. Same-sex marriages and registered partnerships are not legally recognized and such relationships are not openly lived.

Palestine Women