Aus Post drops ‘Occupied’ from Palestinian Territories
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Mail service responds to concerns

Aus Post drops ‘Occupied’ from Palestinian Territories

"Australia Post should not embrace politically loaded and emotionally charged terms which do not reflect reality and that have often served to delegitimise and brand Israel as an 'occupier'."

AUSTRALIA Post has changed a description of one of its mailing destinations from “Palestinian Territory, Occupied” to “Palestinian Territories” after an approach by The AJN and others, relaying Jewish community concerns about the earlier name.

The postal service used the wording on a Destination Guide page of its website, listing destinations it sends mail to and the delivery times that customers can expect.

The Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC) had been alerted to the troubling description by a community member. It said the Palestinian destination was the only one described as “occupied” in a long list of destinations, when in fact other destinations on the list were indeed occupied.

In the absence of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, which have been dormant since 2014, Israel continues to have a military presence in parts of the West Bank. Israel unilaterally ended its occupation of Gaza in 2005.

The Australia Post online listing, before it was amended.

Contacted by The AJN last Monday, Australia Post had by Tuesday amended the description of “Palestinian Territory, Occupied” to “Palestinian Territories”.

An Australia Post spokesperson stated, “We’re grateful to have been alerted to this error, which has been promptly corrected.”

ADC chair Dvir Abramovich said, “While we welcome this change, what is deeply concerning is how the integration of this biased term into the system escaped notice and why it was framed in this manner in the first place.

“Australia Post should not embrace politically loaded and emotionally charged terms which do not reflect reality and that have often served to delegitimise and brand Israel as an ‘occupier’.”

Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC) senior policy analyst Jamie Hyams had earlier stated, “Australia Post should not be referring to ‘Palestinian Territory, Occupied’ on its website.

“The accepted usage internationally for referring to post to the Palestinian Authority-controlled areas in the West Bank, as well as Gaza, is to refer to ‘The Palestinian National Authority’ or just the ‘Palestinian Authority’. AIJAC hopes this is just an oversight or administrative error.”

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