Tag Archives: Palestine

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

Jazz and Stories from Palestine

When? Sunday, 30th July 2017, 12 noon – 3pm

Where? Walpole Hall, 27 Chester St, Edinburgh EH3 7EN

Free entry at the door, but donations welcome

Background: 

Musicians from Mohamed Najem & Friends and Nai Barghouti: Moments take a break from their UK tour to take part in a relaxed atmosphere to play and tell us of their life as Palestinians and musicians. Musicians from Scotland will also be adding to the creative mix.

Free entry, donations welcome

Mohamed Najem & Friends and Nai Barghouti: Moments are touring the UK in July (see here for details) ). In a unique double bill, they bring the freshest Palestinian sounds to the UK. Nai Barghouti returns to the UK joined by some of the best young musicians in Palestine. Paris jazz band Mohamed & Friends complete their first UK tour, fronted by Palestinian clarinet and nay player Mohamed Najem. In an age of barriers, these musicians preach unity and inspiration at its finest.

 

Music for Palestine with Freddie King and Lachlan MacColl


When? Sunday, 23rd July 2017, 6.30 – 8.30 pm

Where? Augustine United Church, 41-43 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EL

Tickets:  Tickets for £5.- available at the door. Proceeds from this concert will be going to the village of Bil’in.

 Background:
 

Freddie was moved to give this concert after hearing Palestinian Iyad Burnat at a meeting in May this year organized by Edinburgh Action for Palestine. 

Iyad comes from Bil’in, a village in the West Bank in Palestine. He gave an account of the non-violent resistance by Bil’in to the illegal confiscation of the village’s farmland, the wall that separates the villagers from their olive trees, and the Israeli occupation. 

Freddie was shocked that there were many casualties among the villagers in the village’s weekly demonstrations including a young boy being shot and a young man killed. He would like to contribute his music to raise awareness and funds for the village. He and his friend Lachlan will perform a concert in honour of the villagers who have been killed and injured and also their families. 

 

Public Meeting with Iyad Burnat: Practising Nonviolence in a Violent World

Iyad BurnatEdinburgh Action for Palestine is delighted to welcome Palestinian activist Iyad Burnat to Edinburgh.

When: Thursday, 4th May, 7.45 pm

Where: Quaker Meeting House, 7 Victoria Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2JL

Background:

Iyad Burnat is a native of Bil’in in the occupied West Bank, and a founder of the Bil’in Popular Committee. This citizen’s group was formed in 2004 to deal with the regular raids by the Israeli forces and sought to slow down the theft of Bil’in’s olive trees and the confiscation of farmland. The village’s fight for survival was documented by Iyad’s brother, Emad Burnat, in the Oscar nominated documentary “5 Broken Cameras”.

Iyad Burnat has been a leading proponent of a non-violent peace protest against the Separation Wall.  Under his skilful eye he has captured the images of occupation and documented the ensuing violence meted out to the protesters, young and old. Iyad was the recipient of the James Lawson Award for Achievement in the Practice of Nonviolent Conflict 2015. 

This will be his fourth tour of the UK having travelled worldwide previously.  His beautifully written book with stunning photographs “Bil’in and the Nonviolent Resistance” will be available to purchase; it tells the story of the struggle. We are delighted to have him joining us and telling us his story.

Please sign petition calling for a public inquiry into the actions of the Israeli Embassy

Palestine Solidarity Campaign has launched a petition calling for a public inquiry to determine the extent of improper interference in UK democratic politics by the Israeli Embassy and to demand from the Israeli government that it is brought to an end.

The petition was initiated after revelation that an Israeli embassy official plotted to ‘take down’ Alan Duncan, a critic of Israeli policy and the UK’s Deputy Foreign Minister.  The embassy official’s words raise significant concerns about improper interference in UK domestic politics, echoed by Labour, the SNP and several Conservative MPs.

There have been calls from all major parties and party members for further investigation of the concerns raised by this footage.

Please click here to sign the petition.

Café Palestine: Commemoration of massacre at Al Dawayima

On Sunday, 30th October, Edinburgh Action for Palestine held a commemoration of the massacre of over 100 inhabitants of the Palestinian village of al-Dawayima on 29th October 1948.  It was held meet by a memorial plaque for al-Dawayima which was laid by the the Lord Provost in 1998 on Melville Drive.

Earlier this year,  a letter by one of the Israeli soldiers who had taken part in that massacre was published in full.  It stated: “There was no battle and no resistance (and no Egyptians). The first conquerors killed from eighty to a hundred Arabs [including] women and children. The children were killed by smashing of their skulls with sticks. Is it possible to shout about Deir Yassin and be silent about something much worse?”   See here for a Mondoweiss article with more details.