Category Archives: Campaign News

The Great Return March

Since Land Day in March 2018, Palestinians have gone to the separation fence to demand an end to Israel’s draconian blockade of Gaza and for the right of return to the homes & land their families were expelled from 70 years ago.

Israel has responded to unarmed protestors with live fire.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs over 200 demonstrators have been killed and over 8,000 wounded by live fire.

In March 2019 a UN Human Rights Council Commission of Enquiry found,

“the use of lethal force …. was rarely necessary or proportionate. The ISF [Israeli military] violated international human rights law.”

https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/HRCouncil/CoIOPT/A_HRC_40_74.pdf

Many protestors shot by Israeli forces undergo amputations.

Gaza’s healthcare is in crisis after Israel’s 11 year blockade & questions have been raised over the type of ammunition used.

“What is unusual is the lesions and … that the wounds are very wide and the bones can be in many fragments.”

Maria-Elisabeth Ingres, Medecins Sans Frontieres.

What can you do?

  1. Write to your MP: (writetothem.com) Demand an end to arms sales to the Israeli Government until it complies with international law.
  1. Boycott Israeli goods: Support the Palestinian civil society call for Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions (BDS) against Israel. https://bdsmovement.net/

Boycott is a traditional, peaceful form of protest. Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jnr & Nelson Mandela all used boycotts.

Witch Hunt – film about threat to democracy

Witch Hunt is a film about the attempt to smash the most hopeful movement of our lifetime.

In 2015, while the far right was gaining ground around the world, socialist MP Jeremy Corbyn was elected as leader of the UK Labour Party in a landslide victory. Accusations of antisemitism within the party immediately began to circulate. Well-known anti-racists and left-wing Jews, such as Jackie Walker, were amongst the chief targets.

WitchHunt sets out to investigate the stories and the people behind the headlines, examining the nature of the accusations. Is this a witch hunt, as some claim? If so, who is behind it, and what is the political purpose of such a campaign? Has the media failed in its duty to fairness and accuracy in reporting on such serious allegations?  Through a series of interviews, analysis and witness testimony, WitchHunt explores the connections between the attacks on Labour, the ongoing tragedy of Palestine and the wider struggle against race-based oppression. It argues that if it is to mean anything at all, the fight against racism must  be a shared one that includes all peoples.

To see film online click https://witchhuntfilm.org.

Contact the team at witchhuntfilm1@gmail.com to arrange screenings and discussions.

 

March events

There are a number of events organised in March. These are not listed chronologically, rather grouped according to organisation, mainly in Edinburgh or Glasgow.
Throughout the month Edinburgh Action 4 Palestine will be holding  regular Saturday stalls from 11:00-13:00 at the corner of Castle Street and Princes Street,
And on the 24 March  will be holding the monthly Reflections of Justice & Peace, by the Awda Key, Palmerston Place, EH12 5AW , 6:15-6:30 
On Sunday 10 March at 6:30 EA4P are delighted to host Sundus Azza, a Palestinian activist from Hebron, at The Melting Pot. (4th floor, 5 Rose St, Edinburgh EH2 2PR) – there is lift access to the meeting room. https://www.facebook.com/events/2268346603438694/?ti=icl
You can also hear Sundus in Glasgow on Monday 11 March, 6.30-8.30. University of Glasgow, University Avenue, G12 8QQ. Hosted by Glasgow University Palestine Society.  https://www.facebook.com/events/801106766905747/?ti=icl
On Saturday 16 March at 7:00 EA4P are holding a Film Night, From Balfour to Banksy: Divisions and Visions in Palestine Quaker Meeting House, 7 Victoria Terrace. Edinburgh. EH1 2JL. https://edinburghaction4palestine.org/2019/02/11/from-balfour-to-banksy-divisions-and-visions-in-palestine/
The event is free, but tickets can be obtained from https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/from-balfour-to-banksy-divisions-and-visions-in-palestine-tickets-55981753933?aff=efbneb&fbclid=IwAR0uELIDRD0RQDqeS1INw3aD7t0Llci3XphGsyl7uGv0sRiNW0k6ulZSv8w
As part of the Palestine Alliance, EA4P are supporting the Scottish demonstration to mark Land Day: Equality, Freedom and Justice for Palestinians, Saturday 30 March, Assemble Foot of the Mound, Princes Street, Edinburgh at 2pm. https://m.facebook.com/events/608760759594953/

 

Also on Land Day, Hadeel (the Palestinian Fair Trade shop in Edinburgh) are holding an evening event: Land, Loss & Longing – A Celebration of Palestinian Culture. Saturday, 30 March from 7-10 pm , at Broughton St Mary’s Church, 12 Bellevue Crescent, EH3 6NE.
Tickets & further information from  https://www.hadeel.org/news/land-loss-and-longing-a-celebration-of-palestinian-culture/?fbclid=IwAR2K3_uddoczkg_eaYuyq06Bzri2UA5FT2ktITRhJlG2HvOeg-FlsL3Ep9c

 

On Wednesday 6 March from 6-8pm Hadeel & Zaytoun are co-hosting two Palestinian speakers in the Hadeel shop, 124 George Street, EH2 4JN. The speakers will talk about Fair Trade in Palestine and the challenges local farmers must overcome for their craft.  https://www.hadeel.org/news/fair-trade-evening/?fbclid=IwAR3JkSSHeHVmhyWU2V71sKnYkestLrlS5Gox-oKzY9FoTN9s1mE-JnqFxoo
There are a number of events organised by Zaytoun to mark Fair Trade Fortnight. Check that out on Facebook (you don’t have to be on Facebook to access this)  https://www.facebook.com/ZaytounUK/
The Balfour Project http://www.balfourproject.org/  are holding two events in Scotland in March. The events are free but tickets are available through eventbrite.
Glasgow on Thursday 14 March, 7.30-9.30.  Britain Palestine Israel:The News from Gaza, Dispelling Myths and Telling the Truth.  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/britain-palestine-israelthe-news-from-gaza-dispelling-myths-and-telling-the-truth-tickets-55401341905
Edinburgh on Sunday 17 March, 1-6.30  Tragedy in Gaza, Britain’s legacy, Scotland’s role.  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/tragedy-in-gaza-britains-legacy-scotlands-role-tickets-55146565863

Reflections at the Awda Key

The key is a symbol of the Right of Return (Awda in Arabic) for Palestinian refugees – a right enshrined in International Law.

Edinburgh Action for Palestine hold a short period of Reflection at the Awda Key, Palmerston Place (beside St Mary’s Cathedral), Edinburgh, at 6:15 on the 24th of each month.

We are there in sunshine and rain!

Visitors to Edinburgh – Palestinian, Israeli and others – also visit the key, see our gallery below.

Remembrance & Resistance: How we can Build a Just Future

Edinburgh Action for Palestine were delighted to welcome Nadia Hijab, a well known political analyst, author and journalist to Edinburgh on Sunday 28 October. Hijab is co-founder and board president of Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network (https://al-shabaka.org/en/)

In her talk titled Remembrance and Resistance: How We Can Build a Just Future, Hijab acknowledged that in the midst of the various actions by the Trump administration like the move of the embassy to Jerusalem, the closure of the PLO office in Washington, the ‘deal of the century’, it is easy to feel despondent. She acknowledged the worrying alliances between Israel and anti-semitic politicians in Europe like Hungary (1) and Poland (2)  and the willingness of the Gulf States to ally with Israel, but she reminded the audience that there is also much to be positive about.

The international solidarity movement is strong, and getting stronger. After Oslo it became weak, but once it became apparent that Oslo was a dead end, particularly after 2000, the movement began to grow in strength again.

Hijab spoke of the many alliances forged particularly in the US with the Black Lives Matter movement and with the Native American movement and said that it was important to forge these links in Scotland as well. The Palestinian solidarity movement is part of a global solidarity movement for human rights.

Hijab spoke of Israel’s attempts to control the discourse in the US and Europe but she does not believe that is working well. In the US many, particularly young, Jews are questioning the increasingly right wing policies of the Israeli government. Attacks on, and attempts to outlaw, the BDS movement are being challenged by those campaigning for free speech.

Within Europe, she continued, the European Union has resisted pressure from the US and Israel to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, instead working to secure EU-Iranian trade in the face of US sanctions.

Hijab also reminded her audience about Khan al Ahmar – it is a very small Bedouin village, the halt to the demolition and transfer of the population is only temporary, but it is important to recognise that the EU can exert some pressure on Israel.

Looking to the future, Hijab told her audience that the sources of power that Palestinians have are too weak to be able to negotiate a just settlement. She said that the question should not be one-state or two-state, but the issue is one of human rights based on international law.

Solidarity groups should be promoting the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions, (BDS) movement and their call for freedom, justice and equality, upholding the simple principle that Palestinians are entitled to the same rights as the rest of humanity. We should demand our politicians uphold the law.

 

1  lhttp://1 https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/netanyahu-orb-n-israel-welcome-hungary-prime-minister-antisemitism-

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/poland-antisemitism-israel-netanyahu-holocaust-law-europe-populism-a8504281.html

https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-israel-is-yielding-to-poland-s-holocaust-narrative-1.6219825

Palestinian Child Prisoners

Israeli soldiers arrest a Palestinian boy as he was taking photographs during a weekly demonstration.

TAKE ACTION:

Sign the Child Prisoners Petition here

Write to your MP here

Write to Boris Johnson here

Israel is the only country in the world that systematically prosecutes children in military courts – between 500 and 700 each year. The Israel Prison Service revealed that an average of 204 Palestinian children have been held in custody every month since 2012.

Ill-treatment in the Israeli military detention system remains “widespread, systematic, and institutionalised throughout the process”. These were the conclusions of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) report ‘Children in Israeli Military Detention Observations and Recommendations‘.

Palestinian children as young as 12 are routinely:

  • Taken from their homes at gunpoint in night-time raids by soldiers.
  • Blindfolded, bound and shackled.
  • Interrogated without a lawyer or relative being present and with no audio-visual recording.
  • Put into solitary confinement.
  • Forced to sign confessions (often in Hebrew – a language they do not understand).

 

For more information:

PSC Factsheet on Child Prisoners

Defence for Children International Palestins (DCI-P) website

Free Ahed Tamimi Briefing, Poster & Graphics