Two young Israeli human rights activists working in Jerusalem warn that unless significant international intervention is undertaken to pressure Israel to change current policies, there will be little hope for a just resolution, and it will spell the end of the democratic Jewish state.
A Jewish group and Palestinian advocacy group are currently in Parliament House hosting Israeli speakers concerned about the cost of the occupation of Palestine to both Israeli’s and Palestinians
The two Israeli speakers are a Sahar Vardi, a 22 year old Israeli woman jailed for refusing to serve in the Israeli military; and Micha Kurz, an ex IDF combat soldier turned human rights advocate.
The two Israeli guests are joining the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN) and the Australian Jewish Democratic Society (AJDS) in meetings with Parliamentarians.
APAN President, Rev Jim Barr said the joint delegation is an indication of the broad range of Australians, including many Jewish people, who do not want to be silent while Israel continues to create and expand settlements on Palestinian land.
“If Israel doesn’t dismantle the Israeli settlements, ultimately the settlements will dismantle Israel, said the Rev Jim Barr. “If Australia is truly a friend of Israel, we must speak out against human rights violations that are undermining Israel’s future”.
Micha Kurz, one of the Israeli visitors said “I was brought up to never stay silent to Human Rights violations. East Jerusalem Palestinian Muslims and Christians are ethnically displaced from a city that should be shared by all faiths.”
“While waving the flag of ‘the only democracy in the Middle East’ Israeli policies are displacing Palestinians from Jerusalem and the West Bank, leaving the future generations of Jews and Palestinians living in limbo without hope of a just resolution.” Micha continued. EVENT Parliamentary Friends of Palestine Forum
TODAY, Tuesday 21 August 2012, IR 2, Parliament House Canberra
Micha and Sahar will share their stories and talk about their grassroots peace work in Jerusalem.
Media welcome from 5-5.40pm