November 2014 | Morgan Poll shows Australians support recognition of Palestine
A Morgan opinion poll showed that the majority of Australians support immediate recognition of Palestine.
In comparison to Opinion Polls of previous years, people reported having increased knowledge about the situation, and an increasing sympathy for Palestinians. Nearly a third of people polled indicated they believe that the Government favors Israel rather than holding a balanced position. Read more.
September 2014 | Ensuring politicians condemned Israel’s land grab
On 31 August 2014, Israel announced the confiscation of a thousand acres of Palestinian land for the expansion of its West Bank settlements.
The international response was swift and strong, yet there was no response from the Australian Government and a very weak response from the Opposition. Only the Australian Greens had called on Israel to reverse the decision.
APAN launched a campaign where Australians wrote to their local members, and within a week there was a condemnation issued by both the Government and Opposition.
August 2014 | APAN dinner for the International Year of Solidarity
Shadow Minister for Finance, Mr Tony Burke MP, spoke at the APAN dinner – using his speech to encourage Australia to ‘walk the talk’ in support of Palestine:
“… if you are serious about a two state solution, the settlement activity must cease. If you are serious about justice, then we need to acknowledge the truth, that all Israeli settlements on Palestinian land are illegal. If we’re serious about speaking the truth then we must unequivocally be able to say that East Jerusalem in occupied”
June 2014 | Of course East Jerusalem is Occupied
On 5 June 2014, the Australian Government announced that it would no longer use the internationally-recognised title of “Occupied East Jerusalem”.
APAN launched a letter-writing campaign on this issue. Following this pressure, the Federal Government indicated that it supported UN resolutions that indicated that East Jerusalem was indeed occupied, though it wouldn’t use the language itself.
April 2014 | APAN helps the ALP stay strong on settlements
The Leader of the Opposition, Mr Bill Shorten MP, made a speech at a Zionist Federation of Australia event which appeared to indicate only some settlements are illegal. APAN launched a campaign where hundreds of people wrote to labor leaders seeking clarification. APAN also wrote publicly, seeking clarification, and APAN’s concerns were raised in The Guardian.
In the following days, Ms Tanya Plibersek MP, Shadow Foreign Minister, clarified the ALP position indicating that “Labor’s position remains the same” and “clear Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advice to Labor in government was that the settlements are not in line with international law.”
March 2014 | Parliamentary event for UN year
APAN was honoured to co-host an event at Parliament House for the launch of the UN International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The event was attended by 24 parliamentarians from across the political spectrum, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of the UN, business and community leaders, academics and community representatives. The event was co-hosted by Parliamentary Friends of Palestine and the Parliamentary UN friendship group. APAN President, Bishop George Browning, asked politicians to “catch up” with the Australian people who have had enough of Palestinians not only being the victims of Israeli policy, but from the international community who won’t stand up against the injustices they are suffering.
February 2014 | APAN supports documentary Stone Cold Justice
Four Corners and The Australian collaborated on producing this documentary, aired on ABC on 10 February 2014. The documentary revealed horrendous treatment of Palestinian children by the Israeli military. APAN released a statement congratulating the producers. APAN also wrote to Cabinet members calling on them to publicly express their opposition to the Israeli practices revealed by the ABC documentary.
The documentary subsequently won the Walkley Award for investigative journalism, and for many people was a significant in understanding Palestinian life under military occupation.
January 2014 | APAN responds to Foreign Minister’s disturbing comments on Israeli settlements
Australia’s Foreign Minister caused outrage by refusing to concede that the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories were illegal under international law. APAN’s President, Bishop George Browning, had an opinion piece published in both The Age and Canberra Times in response. APAN also wrote to the Foreign Minister expressing deep concern about her comments