Twinned Groups - Who's twinned with whom
Creating a Twinning Group - Practical advice
· How to
Action Palestine - our partner for University twinnings
The First Six Days: Oral history of the Six Day War in 1967. Memories from Abu Dis and Camden - the Beginning of the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Twinning with Palestine
The Britain - Palestine Twinning Network - "promoting twinning and friendship links"
Twinning Info. / Visit reports - Camden to Abu Dis
Interesting summary of all the work CADFA has done in recent years. www.camdenabudis.net/visitreports.html
June 2009 Children's music visit - yhr09.blogspot.com
Abu Dis is a village now grown into a small town just east of East Jerusalem, next to the Mount of Olives. Lots of the village lands have been taken to build illegal Israeli settlements - now massive townships, like Maale Adumim, which is continuing to take more land and to expand. Because of its proximity to Jerusalem, Abu Dis people depend/ depended on it for work, for the hospital, for schools, for all sorts of leisure facilities. But since 2002 the links have been disrupted by the Occupation Wall which runs through Abu Dis and divides the town centre from Jerusalem.
Camden links to Abu Dis have been developing since early 2004, and there have been group visits in each direction. Links include education links, health links, women's links, and in each case Camden people work in Camden to extend the understanding of the human rights situation in Abu Dis and in Palestine - and with people in Abu Dis to develop useful projects.
If you live, work or study in Camden, please get involved - there is lots of useful work to do.
For a hard copy report on the April 2005 visit please send £2.50 (includes postage) to;
PO Box 34265
London. NW5 2WD.
TEACHING ENGLISH TO CHILDREN IN ABU DIS
Camden Abu Dis Friendship Association have been raising money to bring a group of children to Camden in June, and meanwhile people in Abu Dis have formed a club for children interested in coming which is helping them to develop their English and prepare for their journey here. In fact so many children have been interested in coming that there are currently 3 groups, each meeting 3 times a week. (So although only 8 children will come to London, many more are taking part in the project)
We have been able to find volunteers to help with the English classes and also teach English to others who are interested. Most of these classes are in the Abu Dis Friendship House (a project supported by CADFA) but volunteers have also helped in a local school and in the university.
BUT … our current volunteer has only a week to go and then the children and others will be without an English teacher.
We are looking urgently for someone who would be able to help for a month, before the children come.
COULD IT BE YOU?
For more information please contact us.
Note that there will be a need for volunteers after that too, so please
get in touch if interested in volunteering at a later date.
Camden Abu Dis Friendship Association
camdenabudis at btinternet.com
PO Box 34265 London NW5 2WD
Charity number 1112717
June 2006 - Abu Dis School children visit Camden - from the BBC website
Our women give birth at the Israeli checkpoints and at the wall and the world governments support the Israeli government.
The present situation in the town of Abu Dis and the surrounding towns since the complete closure of the roads and the openings to Jerusalem has become dangerous and tragic. Since they have opened a gate called the Olive Tree Gate they have only allowed people to pass who hold special passes and people over the age of thirty-five.
This has caused the the number of the unemployed to increase, as many people from the area work in Jerusalem, whether in hospitals, institutions or schools.
Worse than all these are the deaths and the births at the checkpoints. A death and four births have happened at the checkpoints around Abu Dis and the surrounding towns.
One of these cases was the wife of Loa'y Qureia who is 20 years of age, and who was expecting her first baby. She was not allowed by soldiers to go through the Bawabe (which is the name given to the last-remaining way through the Wall, guarded by soldiers for 24 hours)
One of the soldiers said to her, "You are not the first or the last of the many who have given birth at checkpoints." The lady and her mother-in-law started begging with him and crying, but he did not change his mind. A short time after that, the labour pains began; she fell on the ground and started to go into labour. When the people around saw this scene that even an animal could not bear, they got very angry and took action and took her to the hospital in defiance of the soldiers. Thank God the baby was born safely.
Until when... we remain oppressed... and the world is watching us and punishing us.
Dr. Abdullah Abu Hillal
Abu Dis, Jerusalem
PRESS RELEASE - 31st January 2007
Camden organisation contributes to House of Commons report on the situation in Palestine.
Camden Abu Dis Friendship Association would like to draw your attention to our contribution to the committee on the situation in Palestine - The House of Commons International Development Committee Report Development Assistance and the Occupied Palestinian Territories was published today. It is sombre reading, because the situation in Palestine is very bad .
In Abu Dis, the little town that now has friendship links with Camden groups, major issues for people's lives are the Separation Wall, "closures" and checkpoints, arrests and invasions by the occupying army. During the last year, the boycotting of the Palestinian Authority by the West has also had a severe effect on people's health and the livelihood of people there.
CADFA is a human rights organisation local to Camden which organises links between Camden and Abu Dis people. Our contribution to this report links the efforts of the people of Camden directly to the situation in the Middle East. As well as visits in both directions and the exchange of information, CADFA has run a number of projects in Abu Dis. During the last year, we have been able to collect information each month on violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law in the area of Abu Dis. These reports (available on the website) were among the evidence we sent in to the House of Commons Committee.
The International Development Committee report is notable because it calls for a reassessment of the government's approach to the situation in Palestine. It stresses the extremely difficult situation that the Palestinian people are living under, and shows that the situation is deteriorating. The Committee points out that it is the actions of the Government of Israel that are making life so difficult for people in Palestine, and suggests that our own government reconsider its acceptance of what Israel does. For example, the Committee questions the policy of isolating a directly elected Palestinian government, questions the special trading position accorded to Israel while fairness is not given to the Palestinians, and points out that ultimately the problem for the Palestinian people is the Israeli Occupation.
During 2007, CADFA will be organising speaking tours by visitors from Abu Dis to Camden, visits from Camden to Abu Dis, a Palestinian storyteller to visit Camden schools, and publishing a small book of writings by Abu Dis children, and another on the memories of people in Abu Dis of the June war in 1967. On Saturday 3rd February, a concert at Rosslyn Hill Chapel will raise money for health projects in Abu Dis.
Pictures of kites flown in June from Parliament Hill in Camden by the Camden Abu Dis Friendship group. Kites were also flown in Abu Dis.
The Israeli violations on the people in Abu Dis continued during April 2007. There were invasions of houses and arrests during the night. Three students and a teacher from Abu Dis Boys’ School were arrested from their houses; three children from the same school were taken to give evidence of the attack by the Israeli army on the Boys’ School that had taken place on 14th April. The economic siege on the Palestinian people continued for the fourteenth month. In this report we will give details about the Israeli violations in April, as follows.
Building the Wall & confiscating land
The economic situation in Abu Dis
Israeli violations at the checkpoints round Abu Dis
The Israelis have now sealed off Jerusalem very thoroughly and there are only two ways that people can go there by car, if they are allowed. The Palestinians are now using the word “ma’bar” (translated into “terminal”) to describe the huge checkpoints that are like international frontiers that are the ways through the Wall. For the people of Abu Dis, these two terminals are Azzayam, open to people with Jerusalem IDs, and Jabal al Zaytoun, open only to West Bankers – and only if they have permits to go to Jerusalem. (Note that most people in Abu Dis have West Bank IDs but a minority have Jerusalem IDs)
· On Sunday 29th April, Israeli soldiers at Bawabe checkpoint and Al Zaytouneh terminal refused to allow Rasha Abu Rish to pass through the checkpoints and reach the hospital.
· On Sunday 29th April, the Israeli soldiers both at the Al Bawabeh checkpoint and at the Al Zeituneh terminal prevented Rasha Abu Al Rish from going to the Al Makassed Hospital although she was in labour. Her husband took his wife to the checkpoint at around 11 pm just before midnight, but the soldiers refused to let him go through. They went to the Al Zeituneh terminal, but the soldiers refused to allow them to pass through there either. Time was getting on, so Aamer (the father) range one of his friends from Jerusalem who came by a long route and took Rasha on her own to the hospital via the Azzayem checkpoint and in a way that is not legal. It is worth mentioning that a lady from Abu Dis had her baby at the checkpoint the previous month after the soldiers refused to let her go through the checkpoint to the hospital to have her baby.
Arresting and invading houses
During this month the Israeli authorities continued the policy of arresting people. Three youths and a teacher were arrested in April following the invasion of their houses by Israeli soldiers.
During the years of the Occupation, hundreds of people from Abu Dis have been arrested, usually for peaceful resistance against the Occupation, such as demonstrations. Among these there have been many children. At the end of April 2007, there are 65 prisoners from Abu Dis in Israeli jails. Among them there are 29 children from Abu Dis schools, including a girl.
Abu Dis Boys’ School
We are calling on the international community and all the people who are standing by the Palestinians to make some pressure on Israel as an occupying force to stop the violations against the international humanitarian law and all the human rights agreements. In particular
(1) to note the Hague decisions paragraph 133, 152 and 153 and the decision of the International Court of Justice, 9th July 2004 about stopping the work on the illegal Separation Wall in the occupied lands including East Jerusalem and the suburbs of East Jerusalem and to destroy all the bits that are already built.
According to The Hague agreement signed in 1907 paragraph 152, occupation forces must not confiscate lands or properties from the people under occupation. Since Israel signed an international agreement about the civilian and political rights which came out from the United Nations in 1966, and the international community started to work on it in 1976, so Israeli according to this agreement has to work with it also and to consider East Jerusalem and its suburbs as part of this agreement. This agreement says that all the countries who signed must respect the rights of all the individuals who live inside their countries, and an occupying country is responsible for them without any distinction because of the colour, sex, religion, language or political opinion.
(2) also to note the issues about the treatment of prisoners. In particular, the UN Convention against Torture, signed in 1984. defines torture as "Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him … information or a confession …. punishing him … intimidating or coercing him ..." This is currently being violated and is affecting many people in Abu Dis and Palestine, and we are calling for your help and support.
Saturday 26th April 2008, at SOAS Vernon Square Centre
Second floor lecture theatre and classrooms; food in common room downstairs
Information and sales stalls, CADFA exhibition.
10 – 10.45 am Video link to Dar Assadaqa, Abu Dis
speaking to people from health, women, youth committees, Abu Dis students from Al-Quds University and the current CADFA volunteer
10.45 – 11.45 The issues
Speakers and following discussion:
• Prof Hassassian, Palestinian Ambassador to open the conference. The Palestinian issue in 2008
• Stephanie Grant, Human rights lawyer “60 years of human rights?” – 1948 was the year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
• Amjad Taha, Nabka 60 - refugees+ 1948: the year of the Nakba
• Abu Dis speaker – with pictures – Abu Dis in 2008
• Baroness Jenny Tonge – Encouragement to our twinning movement
Questions and discussion from the floor (brief)
12.00-1.00- CADFA up to now
• N D - CADFA headlines to date
• Abu Dis speaker – CADFA in Abu Dis
• Small groups – collecting ideas for what a group like CADFA could aim to do
1pm-1.45pm LUNCH (provided)
1.45- 3.00 CADFA possibilities (speakers very brief)
Diarmaid Ward– youth
Una Doyle– education
Val Lunn– women
Nash Ali– community
Shuma Begum – faith groups
Luca Salice – political parties
Nancy Elan– music
David (tbc) – health
Pete Green – academic
Sabah Shah– students
Kevin Courtney – unions
Tom Eisner - visits
Carmel Elwell- Publications
Andrea d’Cruz- Prisoner campaign
Kate Harrison– Urgent action campaigns
Abu Dis speaker – from an Abu Dis point of view
Questions and discussion from the floor (brief)
3-3.15 tea break
3.15- 4 Next steps: Workshops (people choose one)
1. Fundraising (led by Carmel )
2. Working with organisations in Camden (led by N D)
3. Website (led by Frances )
4. Publicity (led by Luca)
5. The press (led by Wanda Wyporska)
4.00 - 4.15m Palestinian sweets and juice (for energy!)
4.15 Plenary – CADFA’s next year.
Main points from the workshops, main points from the morning
POSSIBLE brief film from Abu Dis - to be confirmed!
- - - - -
- - - - -
Help us develop the Twinning with Palestine network
Join the Twinning with Palestine Groups facebook page for the latest news and events. www.facebook.com
- - - - -
Please support our work - click here
- - - - -
Would you like to visit Palestine? We regularly organise tours to Palestine. Book for the October 2010 tour now!
- - - - -
- - - - -
Greeting Cards (Eid / Xmas)
- - - - -