APAN is a national coalition harnessing the passion of Australians for Palestinian human rights, justice, and equality
Media Release: MP wrong to adopt IHRA Definition of Antisemitism
Media reports indicate the Prime Minister has announced Australia will adopt the IHRA definition of Antisemitism. APAN has rejected the move as unnecessary and dangerous.
“The Racial Discrimination Act is the best tool we have to fight all racism, including the scourge of antisemitism. said Bishop Browning, APAN President.
“The IHRA Definition actually muddies the water between legitimate criticism of Israel and Antisemitism. It has been used to shut down legitimate advocacy for Palestine in other places in the world, and we must not allow this to happen in Australia” he continued.
Vale Hal, Janet & Marty
In the last month three steadfast Australian allies of the Palestinian cause, all in their 90’s, have passed on. Below is some of their stories that we hope will inspire us all to live our lives full of passionate commitment to justice. Rest in power Hal, Janet and Marty.
Professor Wootten organised visits between Australian and Palestinian law schools, as well as founded a PhD program for Palestinian law graduates in Australia. Professor Wootten was also a strong supporter of the Palestinian Film Festival in Australia, and has donated his Middle East collection of books to APAN.
Janet was an artist living in Rome when her Palestinian fiancee Wael Zuaiter was assassinated by a Mossad hit squad in 1972. Janet edited a book, “For a Palestinian: dedicated to the voice of Wael Zuaiter”.
Marty lived a life around the world. Her life began in the USA where in 1947 she recalls being an “idealistic 19-year old student” celebrating the life of the newly formed kibbutz in Israel. She writes “Little did I know that 63 years later I would go to the West Bank and join a Palestine solidarity group as a volunteer..”
Don’t trade away Palestinian rights!
The Australian Trade Minister wants to sign a free-trade agreement with Israel this year!
It would be completely wrong for Australia to reward Israel with this advantaged trade status given their disregard for Palestinian human rights that has led to them being investigated by the International Criminal Court!
It is clear that a free-trade agreement that rewards Israel would be bad for Palestinians, it would also be bad for Australia’s reputation as a country that respects international law.
Release Mohammed El Halabi!
Five years ago Israel arrested humanitarian hero Mohammed El Halabi, accusing him of diverting $50 million in aid money to Hamas. Despite over 150 court hearings and relentless interrogations, the Israeli prosecution has failed to provide any evidence for the charges. Mohammed must be unconditionally and immediately released.
Parliamentarians Speaking up for Palestine
Tony Burke MP
Labor Shadow Minister
Ken O’Dowd MP
National Member for Flynn
Adam Bandt MP
Leader of Australian Greens
Veteran journalist John Lyons, in an Op Ed in the Sydney Morning Herald writes:
I knew that if I reported the truth about the treatment of Palestinian children in the West Bank, I would be the target of a backlash which would be tough, nasty and prolonged. I knew that the report would not encourage a debate about the central theme of the story — whether it was fair that in the West Bank there is one law for Jewish children and one for Palestinian children — but rather a round of attacks on me.
Irish author Sally Rooney has turned down an offer from an Israeli publisher on political grounds. In her statement, Rooney explained that her decision to not sell translation rights to an Israeli publishing house came in support for the grassroots call from Palestinians to end international support for Israel’s oppression of Palestinians and pressure Israel to comply with international law. The statement referenced reports by Human Rights Watch and Israeli organisation B’Tselem affirming what Palestinians have long been saying about Israel’s system of racial domination and segregation, that it meets the definition of apartheid under international law.
For the second day in a row, Israeli forces have cracked down on Palestinians in Jerusalem who gathered to celebrate the birth of the Prophet Mohammad. The Israeli police raided the Damascus Gate where activities for families and children were held, injuring at least 49 Palestinians and arresting ten. Widely circulated images and videos documented Israeli forces assaulting young people, beating passersby with batons, chasing after children, raiding the main street, and indiscriminately firing tear gas and sound bombs at families. They also attacked medical staff and arrested two local journalists covering the events.