Tense days

Some moving insights about life in Palestine these days… Thank you, Jan, for posting them on your blog. Inspired by non-violence and peace…

A Mosaic For Peace

I have returned to Palestine and am once again working in Hebron with the Hebron International Resources Network (HIRN).

Things are tense these days in all of Palestine.  The 48 year Israeli occupation (illegal according to International Humanitarian Law) of Palestine, with even greater repression of human rights over the last several months, has led some young Palestinians to respond violently.  Frustrated and desperate, and prohibited from carrying guns, they have resorted to the use of knives as a tool to stab Israeli soldiers and citizens.  Israel has responded with what they call “increased security measures,” meaning a further clamp down on Palestinian human rights, a dramatic increase in checkpoints, and what appears to be a “shoot to kill” policy, all of which have served to heighten tensions further.  As well, there have been witnessed reports of unarmed Palestinians shot by Israeli soldiers, with a knife later being placed beside…

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Daring to journey together – in the land bridge of Palestine and Israel

Amid the escalating violence, Open House in Ramle (a peace education centre in Ramle, Israel) offers this video from May 2015. The video offers the voices of Israeli and Palestinian youth and their instructors, from their shared time together, known as Masa Masar 2015 – The Journey.

Click here for the video.

Click here for information about Open House.

United Church stands fast on support for Palestinian human rights

With thanks to Peter Larson for his posting.

Canada Talks Israel/Palestine

ucc gc42unsettling goods

Several hundred delegates of the United Church of Canada, representing congregations from Newfoundland to British Columbia, gathered in Corner Brook, Newfoundland last week at the church’s 42nd General Council, have voted to take steps to strengthen the Church’s support for Palestinian human rights. see more

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Settler violence and impunity in the West Bank

This posting originally appeared on the blog that is maintained by the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (www.eappi.org), a programme run by the World Council of Churches.

by the Yanoun team.

On the 31st of July, 18-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsheh was burned to death in a fatal arson attack on his family home in the Northern West Bank village of Duma. Israelis from a nearby settlement are believed to be behind the attack which saw two Palestinian homes torched by petrol bombs.  Ali’s parents and 4-year-old brother survived the attack but were taken to the hospital in a critical condition. Sadly on the 8th of August Saad, Ali’s father, died from third degree burns just one week after his son. Two members of the family are still in a critical condition. The family living in the second house were not at home when the attack happened.

31.07.15 Nablus, Duma. Leaflet dedicated to Ali distributed during funeral ceremony, Photo EAPPI / J. Burkhalter 31.07.15 Nablus, Duma. Leaflet dedicated to Ali distributed during funeral ceremony, Photo EAPPI / J. Burkhalter

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NDP cautiously differentiates itself from Tories and Grits on Palestinian human rights

Now that we know officially that a Canadian federal election will happen, Peter Larson’s posting is timely; I invite you to read his blog via the links provided. Also, news from Susiya is encouraging, too, as Jewish Voice for Peace today forwarded the following from Rabbis for Human Rights and Free Jerusalem:
“Thanks to the determined struggle led by the residents of Susiya, and the public pressure in which we all took part, we have come to believe that in the coming two weeks, there will not be demolitions in the village. At the same time, we will wait to hear about developments, and when the timing for a decision regarding the village’s future grows nearer, we will renew the public struggle.” (Click here.)

Canada Talks Israel/Palestine

dewar to nicholson on Susyia

As a federal election looms, Thomas Mulcair and Paul Dewar have taken positions on human rights for Palestinians in the last few weeks that differentiate them from both the Harper Conservatives and the Trudeau Liberals. Their statements are cautious, but positive. They will no doubt attract fierce criticism from the Israel lobby. More.

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Flora MacDonald: Canadian stateswoman and friend of the peoples of the Middle East

A welcome reminder of how Canadians have chosen to participate in the world in the past…and encouragement to move beyond fear to re-engage in peaceful ways with the world, now…

Canada Talks Israel/Palestine


Flora MacDonald, who passed away this week, has been appropriately remembered as a female political pioneer in Canada. Less well known, however, is that she also had a ‘real love and fascination for the Middle East and all of its people’, in the words of Michel de Salaberry, a former Canadian Ambassador and someone who worked closely with her over many years. I asked Mr. de Salaberry to write a few words about Ms. MacDonald’s involvement in the Middle East, including Palestine. See his text below.

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In Susiya: ” ‘There is Another Way’ in Hebrew, Arabic and English.”

So read the placard at a demonstration yesterday in Susiya.

On Wed., 22 July 2015, the possibility was great that many of the structures of the Palestinian community of Susiya would be demolished. On the next day, I exchanged emails with Dianne, one of the Canadian Ecumenical Accompaniers (www.eappi.org) who is currently there; she wrote that a temporary reprieve seemed to arise… until Tues., 28 July 2015. Living with this uncertainty characterizes life across occupied Palestine.

In the meantime, many Israelis joined Palestinians and some internationals yesterday to stand with the Palestinians of Susiya. I invite you to read a recent blog posting by the Israeli, Adam Keller, titled, “A traffic jam in the middle of the desert”. The reference to “another way” comes from Keller’s posting. Click here.