Commemmorating the 64th Anniversary of the Nakba
News from the YWCA-YMCA Joint Advocacy Initiative
During this week in May, the Palestinian People are marking the 64th anniversary of Al-Nakba that resulted in the uprooting and the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people in addition to the destruction and obliteration of almost 530 Palestinian villages in historic Palestine. 750,000 Palestinians became refugees and were stripped of their lands and properties.
Today the Palestinian refugees, who amount to 7 million and live under very bad conditions, are still waiting to exercise their unalienable right of return and reparation in accordance with the UN resolution 194 and other relevant UN resolutions.
We consider the world community accountable to this right and situation. We ask our friends in the world movements of the YMCA and YWCA, Churches and Church-related organizations as well as the Human Rights organizations and the peace and justice loving people worldwide, to share with us the determination to work for justice for the Palestinians by lobbying to enforce the international law on the Israeli- Palestinian conflict.
Nowadays conditions with the absence of any political progress and while around 2100 Palestinian political prisoners are on hunger strike for the last 28 days, some of which have lasted 77 days, all the peace loving forces are asked to be united to place Israel as the party responsible for the Nakba and the prisoners situation under all means of legal, ethical and economic measures to comply with the international Law and declarations.
You are all asked to act within your context with your governments calling for implementation the unalienable right of return of the Palestinian refugees, to show respect and accountability to the international law.
Your actions of solidarity are needed.
Certainly the Nakba is a time of remembrance for the historic tragedy of expulsion of Palestinians from their homeland, it is a time when each family remembers the trauma and aftermath of the 1948 war, and the loss of their family members and friends, the demolishing of the 531 Arab Villages, and the creation of a problem, which stands unresolved today: the “Problem of Palestinian Refugees. It is equally a time of reflection on what might be done to stop the bleeding and to acknowledge and celebrate those who are brave enough to say “this far, and no further”.”
This goes within the YWCA of Palestine’s vision, re-emphasized by the World YWCA’s adopted resolution that aims to enhance the dignity and security of women, promote their rights, promote peace with justice, as well as promise sustainable future for communities, especially women and their children.
The Nakba should become important for all of you with good will, Internationals, Palestinians inside and outside of Palestine, in Israel, and all over the world. The YWCA has suggested several actions, including the following, to demonstrate your solidarity:
- Working for peace with justice by lobbying to enforce the international law on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
- Organizing talks and visits to witness the reality of life under occupation and promote the material already-distributed by the YWCA and YMCAs (such as the Witness Visit to Palestine of 2009)
- Promoting the Olive Tree Campaign of JAI (Joint Advocacy Initiative) of the YWCA of Palestine and East Jerusalem YMCA
- Supporting YWCA Programs in Refugee Camp Programs, which service refugee women, mothers and children, through Global Ministries.