Defend Jerusalem, Rally for Return and Liberation: Take Action for the Week of Palestinian Struggle 15-22 May

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network urges organizations, activists, social movements and friends of Palestine everywhere to take action to defend Jerusalem, rally for Palestinians’ right to return, and act for justice and liberation for all of Palestine. We join in the call for the Week of Action for Palestinian Struggle, 15-22 May 2021: take action, march, rally, protest, organize and struggle for Palestine! 

As we approach the 73rd anniversary of the Nakba, the Zionist colonization of Palestine and the forced expulsion of Palestinians, the Nakba is continuing. This is apparent everywhere in Palestine, but perhaps is most clear in the heart of Jerusalem, Palestine’s capital: in Sheikh Jarrah, where Palestinian families are being threatened with imminent expulsion from their homes by the Israeli regime and its colonial settlers. 

As we mark 73 years of Nakba, we also celebrate 73 years of resistance. Palestinians in Jerusalem are holding steadfast to their land, homes and lives despite all attempts at Zionist “ethnic cleansing.” And they are making clear, as the Palestinian liberation movement has throughout its history, that resistance is fruitful. 

Many events have already been announced as Palestinians and friends of Palestine mark these dates: Join us on 15 May in Berlin, on 15 May in New York and 16 May in New Jersey15 May in Athens, with more events being organized in Madrid, San Francisco and many more to come! 

Defend Jerusalem

Palestinian youth in Jerusalem won the “battle of the checkpoints,” forcing the dismantling of Israeli occupation checkpoints imposed on the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem as Palestinians celebrate Ramadan. They faced racist, Zionist mobs proudly displaying their attempts to remove Palestinians from Palestine, rampaging through Jerusalem and chanting “death to Arabs,” hand in hand with the attacks of the Israeli “official” occupation forces on youth raising the Palestinian flag. The resistance of these Palestinian youth must inspire us and ignite our organizing to #SaveSheikhJarrah and liberate Palestine!  

Palestinians in Jerusalem are under attack on multiple levels, defending their land, city and identity from erasure and colonialism for 73 years. They face the stripping of their identity and residence — even from their place of birth — severe repression, land confiscations, home demolitions and ongoing Zionist attempts to erase the Palestinian and Arab presence and nature of the city. In Sheikh Jarrah, Palestinian families — refugees of the Nakba in 1948 — are once again being threatened with imminent expulsion from their homes and lands, as they refuse to concede their lives to racist Zionist colonialism. 

Palestinians in Jerusalem — and throughout occupied Palestine and in exile — continue to resist and to prove that the Palestinian struggle continues and that organizing and resistance is the road to liberation. 

On the Week of Palestinian Struggle, join us to defend Jerusalem, #SaveSheikhJarrah and continue on their path of resistance, steadfastness and solidarity. 

Freedom for the Prisoners

There are nearly 4,500 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails: women and men, children and elders, teachers and students, workers and farmers, community organizers and freedom fighters. They are imprisoned because they reflect the resistance and true leadership of the Palestinian people, continuing through 73 years of ongoing Nakba and over 100 years of colonialism. 

Every day, Palestinian prisoners put their bodies and lives on the line, standing on the front lines of confrontation with the jailers. They face severe torture under interrogation, ongoing medical neglect and abuse, and indefinite arbitrary imprisonment without charge or trial under administrative detention. 

Standing with Palestinian prisoners is standing with the Palestinian resistance. It also means standing for the liberation of prisoners for Palestine jailed in Arab reactionary regime prisons, from Egypt to Saudi Arabia, and in imperialist jails, like the Holy Land Five, Issam Hijjawi Bassalat, and the Arab struggler and revolutionary Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, jailed for nearly 37 years in France.

On the Week of Palestinian Struggle, join us to demand freedom for all Palestinian prisoners and all revolutionary prisoners struggling for justice and liberation.

Resistance Toward Victory

The Zionist project — backed to the hilt by British colonialism, U.S. imperialism and their partners in Europe, Canada and elsewhere — has attempted to subjugate Palestine and the Arab region for over 73 years. Despite its force of arms and military strength, the Palestinian people have continued to resist, revolt, rise up in intifada after intifada, and build a revolutionary movement for the liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea. The Zionist project is fundamentally racist, colonialist and must be defeated.

Palestinians have the right to resist occupation and oppression by any means necessary. This includes popular organizing, grassroots resistance, mass action and armed struggle. The so-called “peace process” of Oslo and Madrid has been an attempt to defeat the Palestinian people — an effort that has been resisted and blocked through unending struggle. Despite a brutal siege on Gaza, harsh repression, imprisonment and killing, Palestinians continue to defend their land, people and liberated future with resistance. 

Palestinian resistance and revolution remains an inspiration for the people of the world seeking justice and liberation everywhere. On the Week of Palestinian Struggle, we uphold and affirm the Palestinian resistance toward victory for Palestine. 

Return and Liberation

At the heart of the Palestinian struggle is the right of Palestinian refugees — the majority of the Palestinian population — to return to their homes, lands and properties. Despite 73 years of Nakba, Palestinians in the refugee camps and everywhere in exile and in diaspora have held fast to their keys, their identities, and the promise of victory and return. 

Even as Palestinian refugees are denied their right to return home, they continue to face repression, discrimination and surveillance in exile and diaspora — facing unjust laws and criminalization, denial of refugee rights and racist attacks in countries throughout Europe. On the Week of Palestinian struggle, we fight for the right to remain and the right to return! 

Every victory that is achieved for people’s struggles around the world is a victory for Palestine, and every attack on those movements – such as the attempts to foment a coup in Venezuela or blockade Cuba – is also an attack on the Palestinian people. This struggle for return and liberation has meant that Palestinians have been on the front lines fighting imperialism for over 72 years, fighting alongside comrades in Ireland, the Philippines, Turkey, South Africa, the indigenous Americas and elsewhere. This week of Palestinian struggle is also a week of struggle against imperialism and its attack on the people of the region and the world.

The right to return for Palestinian refugees and the defeat of imperialism are keys to the liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea. Everywhere in Palestine — in occupied Palestine ’48, in Jerusalem, in the West Bank, in the Gaza Strip — and in exile and diaspora, from the refugee camps to the cities of the world — Palestinians struggle for victory and liberation.

Join us 15-22 May 2021 in the Week of Palestinian Struggle — defend Jerusalem, take action for return and liberation!

TAKE ACTION: 

Please join us in taking action of the Week of Palestinian Struggle! Here are a few action items you can take. Please share your actions with us at samidoun@samidoun.net.

1. Demonstrations, rallies and street actions – defend Jerusalem, march for return, rally for liberation!

Have a protest or action to mark the 73rd anniversary of the Nakba, support Palestinian resistance, defend Jerusalem or uphold the right to return. Organize a mass rally if you can do so in your area, but if conditions prevent it, there are still important ways to get out on the streets – check out the Stand Palestine for Jerusalem being organized on 30 April by Collectif Palestine Vaincra in Toulouse, France; the Iftar and Speak-Out for Jerusalem organized on 30 April in New York by Within Our Lifetime, or the outdoor informational gatherings in Frankfurt, Germany, organized by Samidoun Deutschland for the Week of Action for Palestinian Prisoners. 

You can also check out the civil disobedience actions organized against Elbit, the arms manufacturer, by Palestine Action in the UK for direct actions targeting the apartheid war machine.

2. Boycott Israel! — including the boycott of Israeli Dates! 

Join the campaign to cut off Israel’s international support and markets by building the boycott of Israel and the international isolation of Zionism. This Ramadan, as Israel is attempting to force Palestinians from Jerusalem, demolish homes, and imprisons thousands more, it markets dates from stolen Palestinian land around the world. Build a boycott campaign — work to get your union, church or university to stop buying HP products or employing G4S security contractors; both companies profit from the imprisonment of Palestinians. 

Labor unionists here can take a stand: boycott the Histadrut! The Zionist labor federation is part and parcel of the attack on Palestinians for 73 years. Join with Palestinian trade unionists to boycott the Histadrut and exclude this racist organization from international labor bodies.

Boycott Israeli dates — spread the word in your community, go to stores to educate consumers and sticker the products of Zionism and colonialism. Contact us via email at samidoun@samidoun.net or via WhatsApp at +32466904397 to let us know about your boycott actions. 

3. Creative Actions

Creative actions are a wonderful way to highlight the Palestinian struggle – even when you are engaging in physical distancing and health precautions. The banner hung by Samidoun España in Madrid at the University metro station highlighted the struggle of Palestinian students, while the campaign to symbolically rename streets after Georges Abdallah internationally commemorated his birthday and amplified the demand for his liberation.

These actions only require one, two or a few people. You can even simply poster and sticker around your neighbourhood. Contact us via email at samidoun@samidoun.net or via WhatsApp at +32466904397 to let us know about your boycott actions.

4. Online/Virtual Events and Webinars

We still have plenty to share with each other via online events and webinars, which can enable us to connect easily and freely across borders and barriers. Host a webinar or event — or a cultural gathering with poetry and music — highlighting the Palestinian right to return and the ongoing liberation struggle.

Please note: Samidoun has speakers that can participate in your webinars in Arabic, English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish and other languages. Contact us via email at samidoun@samidoun.net or via WhatsApp at +32466904397 to inquire about a Samidoun speaker! 

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