Launching the Irish Anti-Apartheid Coalition, celebrating Palestine, and much more!
Phew, what a week we just had!
Tuesday 29th November was International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, and this past week saw the Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign organise events the length and breadth of the country, from Waterford to Sligo, Limerick to Belfast, Newbridge to Navan, and Dublin to Derry.
In Dublin, on November 30th, to mark 21 years of the IPSC, there was a standing-room only Palestinian Cultural Evening featuring world renowned oud player Saied Silbak, alongside readings from Sen. Frances Black, broadcaster Mike Murphy and actress Neili Conroy, and contributions from the current and former Chairs of the organisation. Incidentally, you can catch another amazing Saied Silbak’s performance at Amnesty’s ‘Songs Against Apartheid’ event in Dublin on December 10th.
Wednesday 30th also saw the launch of the new Irish Anti-Apartheid Campaign, made up of 18 Irish civil society organisations and Independent Senator Frances Black. The coalition –which, alongside ourselves in IPSC, includes Trócaire, Amnesty International, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and Irish Council for Civil Liberties– will work together to engage the Irish public and political representatives on the issue of Israeli Apartheid, and to build political support for effective action by Ireland and the international community to end the crime of apartheid against Palestinians. You can read our launch statement here in the Irish Times (or here in the Irish Examiner).
Also on the 30th, the Irish Times published an opinion piece from my dear friend and former IPSC Chairperson, Fatin Al Tamimi, reflecting on the current landscape of despair and hope facing Palestinians. You can read it here if you are an Irish Times subscriber, or read it here if you are not.
This week too saw the raffle draw for the winner of the Palestinian surfboard; a huge congratulations to Oisín O’Sullivan from Sligo who won the custom longboard, and our ten runners up who won ‘Free Palestine’ keepcups. Our winner and runners up have been informed and the prizes are winging their way to them now. Of course, massive thanks are due to everyone who bought tickets and Tom at TH Surfboards – together you helped us raise over €6,500, which will plug a big gap in our finances. Thank you all so much!!
To ring in the New Year, the IPSC will be organising our customary New Years’ Eve vigils around the country. Here is info about the Dublin one, and keep an eye on the events section of our website for more as they are announced.
PLEASE TAKE THREE QUICK ACTIONS
Finally, before you go, we’d like to ask you to do three very simple but important things:
One: Take two minutes to email the Irish government and demand they take action to stop Israel from deporting Palestinian human rights defender Salah Hammouri. Click here to send!
Two: If you haven’t already signed the EU Citizens’ Initiative to ban trade with illegal settlements, please take a couple of minutes to do so now. Almost a quarter of a million people have signed so far, which is truly incredible! But now we’ve got just two months to get that figure up to a million... it’s a mammoth task, but I know that together we can do it! Speak up for Palestine, make your voice count – please sign the ECI here!
Three: After you have signed – or if even you have already signed – then we ask you to please, please, please, SHARE the ECI on social media and with friends and family in messaging apps – here is more information on how to do that, including copy and paste messages. One-to-one and group-chat sharing is by far the best way to get people to sign up – please help us spread the word!
Thank you for reading this, and for all your support for the Palestinian people. We in the IPSC hope you have a lovely holiday season and come back fully recharged for the challenges of 2023.
Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign