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Global week of action against Israel’s wall in the West Bank

by Nora Barrows-Friedman

9 November 2011 | The Electronic Intifada

Since the beginning stages of Israel’s implementation and continued construction of its illegal wall in the occupied West Bank nearly ten years ago — and compounded with the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) ruling in 2004 that the wall is in violation of several international laws — activists on the ground in Palestine and in numerous countries around the world have engaged in sustained and creative protest.

The Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign/Stop the Wall (STW) has organized a global week of action against Israel’s wall and its policies of apartheid and settler-colonialism in Palestine, which begins today and runs through 16 November.

Activist groups, boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) committees, student coalitions and grassroots organizations from 18 countries on five continents have signed on to officially participate in the global week of action.

In Palestine, STW has organized three separate demonstrations in addition to the regular, weekly Friday actions against the wall in different villages.

From their website:

13 November: Demonstration in the southern West Bank village of Tarqumiya — The demonstration takes place to commemorate the massacre of the people of al Sammou, south of Hebron. Exactly 45 years ago, on November 13 1966 Israeli forces raided this village, destroyed 125 houses, the village clinic and school as well as 15 houses in a neighboring village. 18 people were killed and 54 wounded.

15 November: Demonstration in Qalandiya — Qalandiya has become the flashpoint of confrontation, a symbol of the Palestinian determination not to accept the isolation of Jerusalem and the ongoing ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian capital.

20 November: Demonstration in northern West Bank city of Tulkarem — Tulkarem, its refugee camps and surrounding villages are heavily impacted by the Wall and its checkpoints. People from the northern parts of the northern part of the West Bank will gather to demonstrate their determination to continue resistance against the Apartheid Wall and the Israeli project of enclosing them in enclaves and Bantustans.

Global solidarity events

A sampling of international events — culled from the official list on the STW website — include:

- Belgium, 10 November: In Brussels, Intal [a Belgian global solidarity group] will organize a conference and debate in support of the Palestinian call for a comprehensive and mandatory military embargo on Israel by highlighting the fact that Belgium sells weapons to Israel. This conference will have as a goal to inform our members and their friends about the weapons business between Belgium and Israel

- Netherlands: Activities are planned in Utrecht and Amsterdam … Signatures will be collected for a so-called citizens initiative asking for a debate in parliament on the ICJ ruling. From the needed 40,000 signatures the last 3,000 will be collected that week plus the following weeks of the year

- Spain/Basque country, 10 November: A conference in Bilbao about Israel’s wall

- England, 12 November: Wall around the Monument in Newcastle City Centre. A human wall where each person represents a fact about the apartheid wall. Distribution of fact sheets on the wall, Israeli apartheid, human rights abuses, and BDS nearby. BDS pledge cards will be distributed to the public.

- Argentina, 16 November: The FEARAB youth group in Buenos Aires have launched a call for the academic and cultural boycott of Israel in Argentina, and the signatures of the persons who support the initiative will be announced publicly as the week of global action closes

- Canada, 10 November: An evening with writer and photo journalist Jon Elmer, coordinated by Students Against Israeli Apartheid in Toronto

- United States: Huge awareness-raising campaign tool kits for various action ideas by US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation

- South Korea, 12 November: A performance to educate the public on the wall and its effects on Palestinians

Radio Intifada

Several organizations throughout Latin America, including Argentina and Mexico, are participating in the week of action. Radio Intifada, a Spanish-language radio project of STW, has also produced three 30-minute segments that are available for free download and syndication on local independent radio stations interested in broadcasting news and analysis on Israeli policies and the grassroots actions to challenge them.