Those who are critical of Israeli government policies and actions towards the Palestinians are increasingly accused of being antisemitic – a powerful allegation that oftentimes is used in an attempt to shut down legitimate political discourse. APAN condemn antisemitism alongside all other forms of discrimination.
In this context, APAN and the Australian Jewish Democratic Society have produced a Joint Statement on Antisemitism that will be launched on the 22 June.
“It is rightly a crime to minimise or deny the holocaust, but equally it is becoming a crime in Israel to support the facts of history, that the Palestinian people have suffered the Nakba, and that the Nakba continues to be perpetrated. To lay bare these truths is to be inflicted with the antisemitic slur.”
The 15 May is commemorated annually as al-Nakba – the catastrophe. Palestinians and their supporters mark the beginning of their dispossession that begun in 1948 and continues to this day. Palestinian community and solidarity groups around Australia hosted a number of events surrounding the May 15 date, see below for videos of events.
Israeli plans for Annexation with Dr Ashrawi
Dr Hanan Ashrawi -spokesperson and member of the PLO Executive Committee -provides comments about Annexation with Australian Palestinians Hiba Farra and Dr Nahed Fraitekh. This event was an initiative of the Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine.
Palestine Talks – The Inevitability of Israel-Palestine Union
The talk by Prof Bassam Dally addresses themes of separation and union and how it applies to Israel-Palestine. It will look at the history, geography and politics including factors that are hindering progress. This event is an initiative of the Australian Friends of Palestine Association (AFOPA).
COVID-19 under annexation threats
Mazin Qumsiyeh is from the University of Bethlehem and the Palestine Museum of Natural History. Mazin’s address is on the theme Covid-19 in a Palestine under the threat of annexation. This talk is an initiative of BDS Australia and Sydney Staff for BDS
Australia Palestine Advocacy Network welcomes the Herald Sun’s apology to Former Federal Labor MP, The Hon. Melissa Parke.
In the lead up to last year’s Federal election, the Murdoch owned tabloid was engaged in a baseless smear campaign against Ms Parke, accusing her of antisemitism without any evidence to support the claim.
“When the pro-Israel lobby spends much of its time in a relentless vendetta against critics of Israeli state policy, they debase the true meaning of the term ‘antisemitism’ and they let real antisemites – mainly far right white nationalists – off the hook.”
Ms Parke is also currently suing Liberal MP David Sharma for defamation, as well as Colin Rubinstein, executive director of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs, for similar accusations of antisemitism.
We commend Ms Parke on her bravery and resolve in challenging these accusations, despite the tremendous toll it has taken, and the personal and professional cost Ms Parke has shouldered.
At APAN, we will continue to stand alongside steadfast advocates like Ms Parke, in our shared commitment to realising a safer world that respects us all.
Bishop George BrowningPresident, Australia Palestine Advocacy Network