potential partners

Have you thought of Twinning with Palestine?

Twinning is an active method to generate interest and promote issues.

Twinning engages with the effects of the Israeli occupation.


campaigning through twinning with Palestine

Through organised visits twinning generates opportunities to talk about the situation:

Building links between; local schools, churches and mosques, medical centres, community centres; and local and national politicians.

Encouraging local activism, public meetings empowering connections with people such as the Palestinian Ambassador, members of parliament and local councils, academics and activists.

Groups campaign for peace, justice and end to the occupation of Palestine

what is the value of twinning?

The objectives of twinning links with towns in the West Bank and Gaza, which are occupied/controlled by Israel, extend well beyond simple friendship, although that is very important. These links;

Many informal twinning links, as well as a few formal town-town ones, have been set up between British towns and Palestinian villages in recent years. The Britain Palestine Twinning Network (BPTN) which fosters cooperation and information exchange between these groups, has 25 member twinning towns but there are probably more. Links between UK universities and Palestinian towns/villages have also been set up. These twinning/friendship links are highly valued by Palestinian partners and we hope that churches, schools, scout and guide groups, and others will also forge links in the future. We are actively looking for more British twinning partners—see below.

Formal international twinning between town councils was popular in the decades after the second World War as a way of developing friendship between countries, sharing each others’ culture, and exchanging experiences. They are able to co-exist with other twinning links. Many of these formal contacts are dormant but friendships made through them still exist.

so how do you set up a twinning/friendship link?

UK twinning groups vary from small friendship links to large and active twinning and campaigning organisations. But in general what’s needed is a group of 4-5 people in your locality who are willing to put time and energy into setting up a British twinning group and running meetings, organising visits, raising funds, etc. It may be hard work at times but the friendships made both here in the UK and in Palestine make it very worthwhile. More importantly your Palestinian group will really appreciate what you’re doing because they will feel they are supported and that someone cares.

what role does the Britain Palestine Twinning Network play in all this?

We facilitate new links: we have, at the moment, several Palestinian towns/villages, a refugee camp and a secondary girls’ school who have all been visited and have asked us for a British twin town. The occupation limits foreign contacts and it’s very easy for Palestinians to become isolated and feel they are forgotten. Their main motivation in seeking a twin town is therefore the opportunity to visit the UK to tell their own story, to welcome British visitors to their village or school, and to feel that they are supported in their struggle. We would be happy to put you in touch with them.

Advice and support: we are very happy to help set up and advise on how best to run a twinning group. Between us we have wide experience of most of the issues. You just need to ask.

Through biannual conference/AGM where members and others who are interested can meet for mutual support, to hear about the latest successes – and challenges – and to plan joint-projects.