The Center for Constitutional Rights Marks Nakba Day and the Ongoing Nakba in Solidarity with Palestinians

May 15, 2024, New York – In solidarity with Palestinians on Nakba Day, the Center for Constitutional Rights issued the following statement:

Today marks Nakba Day, when, 76 years ago, Israel’s ethnic cleansing of Palestinians resulted in dozens of massacres, over 15,000 Palestinians killed, and the forcible displacement of more than 750,000 Palestinians from their homes. As a result of Israel’s settler-colonial takeover of historic Palestine, 531 Palestinian villages were destroyed and 85 percent of Palestinians became refugees or internally-displaced people, whose descendants — despite having their families’ deeds, documents, and even house keys — are still barred from returning to their homes and land. Many refugees ended up in Gaza, where today over 80 percent of the population are descended from those displaced. This is not only historical: with the current assault on Rafah and forced expulsions to Egypt, much of the population of Gaza, already displaced multiple times by Israel’s ongoing assaults, is experiencing a repeat of the horrors of 1948.

This is why Palestinians speak of the ongoing Nakba (“catastrophe”). It is evidenced by assaults and killings by settlers and the Israeli military in the West Bank, land theft, destruction of crops and property, detention without charge of adults and children, bulldozing of family homes, an apartheid system of domination, and the unfolding genocide in Gaza. Despite dire conditions, Palestinians’ commitment to justice and faith in a future of freedom and right of return — supported by a  global movement that is growing despite widespread repression — has shown the world that their struggle is one of sustained vision and justice long delayed.

As part of our longstanding commitment to justice, freedom, equity, and human rights, we have stood with Palestinian human rights defenders who have fought against the silencing of their voices, the theft of their land, and the erasure of their identities. On Nakba Day,  we're highlighting some of our work seeking to stop the genocide in Gaza, currently the most visible and urgent articulation of the Nakba’s legacy. Our case against Biden, Blinken, and Austin for failure to prevent and complicity in genocide will be argued in the Court of Appeals in San Francisco on June 10, 2024. Providing the bombs and the diplomatic cover, the role of the United States in the ongoing Nakba cannot be understated.

For more information on the scope of our related work, visit the Palestine solidarity issue page on our website.

The Center for Constitutional Rights works with communities under threat to fight for justice and liberation through litigation, advocacy, and strategic communications. Since 1966, the Center for Constitutional Rights has taken on oppressive systems of power, including structural racism, gender oppression, economic inequity, and governmental overreach. Learn more at


Last modified 

May 15, 2024