JUSTICE - No. 71

54 No. 71 JUSTICE students awaiting the beginning of the delayed academic year, conducted legal research and drafted both questions and answers about salient legal issues. The questions and answers were aimed at informing the public as well as persons participating in international efforts to raise awareness of the hostages’ plight. Among the topics discussed were the international legal status of the hostages, specific provisions that address the treatment of injured hostages or those with medical needs, the rights of specific groups of hostages such as the elderly and those with disabilities, provisions that address potential gender-based violence against women, the consequences for individuals or groups who violate international law in hostage situations, and the role of the ICRC with respect to hostages.16 Conclusion The IHRC’s appeal to UN treaty bodies and pursuit of special procedures to make demands on Hamas and Palestine may appear surprising, given Hamas’s terrorist character and the Government of Israel’s objection to international recognition of Palestinian statehood. However, one of the basic tenets of the CLEC, and within it of the IHRC, is that human rights are universal and may not be nullified under any circumstances. The IHRC pursues this mission irrespective of international political 16. See Hostages and Missing Families Forum, available at https://stories.bringthemhomenow.net/q-a considerations. It neither represents the Government of Israel nor is bound by the latter’s policy. Its sole mission is to protect and promote respect for human rights through any lawful legal avenue available that may advance this goal. Adv. Michal Goren, B.A. in Comparative Literature and Philosophy from The Hebrew University, LL.B., Hebrew University of Jerusalem, LL.M. (Magna Cum Laude) from the Emil Zola Chair for Human Rights at the College of Management Academic Studies. Michal is the Clinical Director of the IHRC and Co-Director of the Clinic for the Representation of Marginalized Population Groups. Dr. Adv. Shiran Reichenberg, LL.B., LL.M., Ph.D., Hebrew University of Jerusalem; LL.M., ULC, is the Executive Director of the CLEC, and the Clinical Director of the Rights of Youth at Risk Clinic. Professor Yaël Ronen, Ph.D., University of Cambridge, is a faculty member at the Academic Center for Science and Law, and research fellow at the Minerva Center for Human Rights at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She is the academic director of the IHRC.