Posts Tagged Ramallah

DERRY- September 13th “To Move a Wall and Free a Village” Iyad Burnat Speaking on Bil’in’s Struggle

Posted by on Friday, 28 August, 2015
Iyad Burnat arrested 28/8/15 at Weekly Protest in Bil'in

Iyad Burnat arrested 28/8/15 at Weekly Protest in Bil’in

Photos by Hamdi AbuRahma-Palestine

Organised by Irish Friends of Palestine “To Move a Wall and Free a Village”Iyad Burnat’s Firsthand Report of Bil’in’s Non-Violent Struggle to Exist and Resist Israeli Apartheid Occupation

EVERYONE WELCOME to an evening with our main speaker from Palestine, Iyad Burnat, leader of the “Bil’in Popular Committee against the Wall” which has held weekly non-violent demonstrations since 2005. Burnat is also the head of “Friends of Freedom and Justice in Bil’in” an organisation that hopes to build links with people around the world. Iyad is the brother of Emad Burnat who co-produced the film “5 Broken Cameras.” Iyad played the central character in the documentary. The film was nominated for an Academy Award in Hollywood and also won the Sundance Film Festival Award in 2012. Iyad himself has won several awards for his non-violent resistance, the most recent being the James Lawson Award for Achievement in the Practice of Nonviolent Conflict June of 2015.

Iyad says “The belief in one’s rights is more important than anything else. If I am confident about my rights, nothing will make me despair…When you resist an Israeli soldier by peaceful means, their weapons become irrelevant.”

Bil’in is a Palestinian village that is literally struggling to exist.

The village is surrounded by illegal settlements built on land that belongs to Bil’in and it’s people. The Matityahu settlement, the Kiryat Sefer settlement, and the most recent Matityahu East settlement. Then in 2004 construction of the Apartheid wall began on the Western side of Bil’in. This caused 2300 dunums of Bil’in’s land to be stolen to construct the wall in order to “protect the illegal settlers.” The Apartheid Wall cuts off and suffocates the village of Bil’in.

This is the story of a village that refuses to quietly disappear, this is the story of people who peacefully resist the illegal occupation alongside Israeli Peace activists and International Palestinian Solidarity Activists from around the world. Bil’in residents peacefully demonstrate every Friday in front of the “work-site of shame” AKA the Apartheid Wall. The Israeli army responds to these peaceful protests with physical and psychological violence. Iyad’s oldest son Majd, was shot and seriously injured by Israeli Occupation Forces in 2014, he is still suffering from that injury and will need rehabilitation for some time. In 2009 Iyad himself was seriously injured on the march along with several others and in 2011 he was shot and injured by rubber-coated steel bullets.

The Friday protests by the people of Bil’in, and widespread international support, have managed to achieve the recognition of the Israel High Court, which recently ruled that the route of the Apartheid Wall in the village is illegal and must be changed.

Nevertheless, every day Israel destroys a bit more of Bil’in. But the people of Bil’in will not surrender the struggle for their land, their homes, and their very lives. Come and learn what we can all do to help. Iyad will tell the first hand account of Bil’in’s continuing struggle, the land lost, the lives lost and injured, and the weekly Friday protests to move a wall, and save a village.

Supporting Speakers:

REPORT: Martina Anderson MEP who is the current Chair of the the European Union’s Delegation for relations with the Palestinian Legislative Council. She will give an update on what’s taking place within the EU on Palestine and the preferential trade agreement with Israel. What work the GUE/NGL are doing to help recognise a Palestinian state.

REPORT: Liam Gallagher Chair of (DTUC) Derry Trade Union Council will speak on behalf of DTUC and (TUFP) Trade Union Friends of Palestine about the work they and their members are doing in support of Palestine and the BDS movement.

EVENT PROGRAM

7:00PM – 8:00PM Speakers

8:00PM – Audience Question and Answer Session

The evening ends with a Screening of “5 Broken Cameras”

BANNER EVENT 600

“Palestinians For Dignity” Call for Protest Against EU

Posted by on Thursday, 2 August, 2012

Palestinians for Dignity Protest photo: mondoweiss.net

Palestinian youths said Monday they would organize protests against European Union “complicity” in Israel’s occupation unless Brussels suspended plans to upgrade relations with Israel.
The group, Palestinians for Dignity, called on the EU to freeze a new upgrade of relations with Israel, suspend an existing association agreement until Israel complies with international law, and investigate European companies benefiting from Israel’s occupation and settlement policies.

“Barring meaningful action on the above, the Palestinian youth movement will organize to protest the latest manifestation of EU complicity and to challenge its presence and operations in Palestine,” the group said.

As Palestinian youth, we are tired of the EU’s hypocrisy and its contemptuous policies that use aid and development programs to mask political cowardice and complicity in Israel’s crimes; it has to be made clear that all the financial support going to the PA is futile when the EU offers unconditional political, trade, academic and other forms of support for Israel. The EU’s policies have only served to prolong Israel’s occupation and our oppression. The time has come for EU Member States, and the EU as a whole, to decide—to either demonstrate their support for human rights or continue their support of Israel’s violent occupation and apartheid regime and risk losing not only the Palestinian people but Arab peoples and people of conscience all over the world.

This latest move by the EU is nothing less than outrageous, particularly given the EU’s continuous verbal criticism of Israel’s belligerent settlement plans. This duplicitous behavior epitomizes the reasons why the Palestinian people have no faith in the EU. While some in the Palestinian leadership might have common personal interests with the EU and Israel, the Palestinian people will not accept only hollow words of condemnation.

We should not need to remind the EU that Israel continuously flouts the will of the international community, remains in breach of UN Security Council resolutions, continues to violate its international law (including IHL) obligations, and daily abuses the human rights of the Palestinian people. Whether in its settlement policies, construction of the Apartheid Wall, its ethnic cleansing and “Judaization” of Jerusalem and the Naqab (Negev), its criminal blockade of Gaza, its denial of the UN-sanctioned rights of the Palestinian refugees, its violation of the rights of Palestinian prisoners (including children), its demolition of Palestinian homes, and its countless other illegal policies, Israel is undoubtedly guilty of gross human rights abuses, deserving of condemnation and sanctions, not rewards and benefits.

In its most recent plan Israel has decided to destroy eight Palestinian villages in southern Hebron, displacing more than 1000 Palestinians, in order to have more military training grounds for its soldiers. Rather than taking measures to ensure respect for international law as called for by Common Article 1 of the Geneva Conventions, it seems that EU Member States have decided to reward Israel for its continued abuse of the Palestinian people. Moreover, EU Member States have chosen to completely ignore Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which is designed to deter human rights abuses by clearly stating that EU-Israel ‘’relations shall be based on respect for human rights and democratic principles which must guide internal and international policy”. These actions can only send one clear message to the Palestinian people – that our rights and lives are trivial, deserving only the occasional lip service but never

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