Dear All

Thursday 2nd November 2017 is the 100th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration
On that day, a fateful declaration was signed by then British Foreign Secretary, Arthur James (later Lord) Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour.

In the name of Justice and Peace
join our VIGIL
Apologise to the
Palestinian People for the Balfour Declaration

Saturday, 4 November 2017, 10am-4pm
Station Square, ObanPlease come and join us for an hour or longer
to apologise to Palestine for 100 years of abuse.

Bring a candle in a jar, wear a keffiah, or
drape the Palestinian flag over your shoulders.
If  you can, create a poster like the one above. 


On 2nd November, 1917, Arthur Balfour put his signature to a letter addressed to Lord Walter Rothschild. Rothschild was a leader of the British Jewish community. The letter was intended for transmission to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland. The Foreign Minister affirmed the British government’s support for the establishment of a ‘national home for the Jewish people’ in Palestine at a time when Palestine was part of the Ottoman Empire. 

Back then, the policy was understandable. This may explain why ‘Prime Minister Theresa May wants British people to feel “pride” in the Balfour Declaration’ (The Independent, 2 March 2017).

However, facts on the ground had been suppressed and Britain’s policy strengthened Zionism. To this day, Britain continues to provide support to the state of Israel and its inhuman, illegal policies which have brought unspeakable misery to Palestinians living in the occupied West Bank and in Gaza.

As a consequence of the Balfour Declaration, Palestinians were robbed of their ancestral land. Tens of thousands perished in the desert. Tens of thousands more were forced into exile.

Most of the around five million Palestinian refugees live in abject conditions in so-called refugee camps around the Middle East, including Gaza. For sixty years and longer, the state of Israel has been depriving Palestinians of their dignity.

In fact, Israel must now be considered an Apartheid state in which Palestinian Israelis – children, women, men – are systematically treated far worse than its Jewish population. The Zionist project is harming everyone involved – yet it continues to enjoy the support of the British government (and others).

For an animated introduction to the above, see Israeli Palestinian conflict explained: an animated introduction (published in Nov.2012) Produced by JVP – Jewish Voice for Peace in the U.S.
Let no-one say we did not know!

In the name of Justice and Peace
join our VIGIL
 Station Square, Oban
Saturday, 4 November 2017, 10am-4pm

Apologise to the
Palestinian People
and to let them know that thousands of people in the British Isles
and elsewhere are standing with them.

We look forward to seeing you there. Please get in touch for any further information you may require:

ObanConcern4Palestine[@]gmail.com • 07747 300 062

Please note that by taking part in the vigil, you will be
giving your implicit permission to being photographed
and to your image being disseminated on our
social networking pages (wordpress blog, facebook).

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Ayman Jarjour in Edinburgh, 29 Sep 2017: Classical Guitar and Choral Music fundraiser

Dear All

Friday, 29 September 2017, 7:30-9:30pm
join in an
Evening of Classical Guitar & Choral Music
Ayman Jarjour
The Choir of St. Andrew’s and St. George’s West
in aid of Palcrafts, a registered Scottish charity,
and its trading arm, Hadeel.

Friday, 29 September 2017, 7:30-9:30pm
St. Andrew’s & St. George-s West Church
13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA

Tickets: £20, £15 (over 60s/disabled), £10 (under 16s);
Admission includes a light buffet, wine and soft drinks.

Book here or get your tickets at Hadeel, 123 George St., EH2 4JN (Mon-Sat, 10am-5pm); from the Undercroft Café, St. Andrew’s and St. George’s West, EH2 2PA; or at the door.

Classical guitarist Ayman Jarjour hails from Syria. He now lives in Scotland and often gives charity concerts.

The primary aim of Scottish Charity no SC033983 Palcrafts is to reduce poverty ‘by providing a sustainable source of income for artisans and farmers and is mainly done through the trading arm Hadeel. Secondly it aims to raise awareness in the UK of Palestinian issues. Thirdly it gives grants to producer groups. This has included recent grants to update computer equipment and machinery to improve productivity and improve Health & Safety. It also gives advice and assistance on further product development.’

With thanks to Scottish Friends of Palestine for forwarding the information to Oban Concern for Palestine.


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Miko Peled in Glasgow, 27 Sept 2017

Dear All

The Scottish Palestinian Forum invites you to a
seminar with MIKO PELED

The renowned Israel-born Peace activist and author will be speaking in Glasgow, at 7:30 pm on Wed. 27 September 2017

Blythswood Hall,
Renfield St.Stephen’s Centre,
260 Bath Street
Glasgow G2 4JP

(We understand that a similar event will also be held in Edinburgh on Thursday, 28 September 2017)

The son of a decorated Israeli army general, and himself a one-time proud ISAF member, Miko Peled will share his account of growing up in the heart of Zionist Israel’s military elite.

This thought-provoking seminar will take participants on a journey of tumultuous events that sparked Miko Peled’s transformation into an advocate for Peace and Equal Rights for all Palestinians and Israelis.

Miko Peled’s book, The General’s Son, will be on sale.


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ZYARA – a chance to see Palestine as it really is (Nov-Dec 2017)

Dear All

This is a message received on 8 Sept 2017, 10am, from Scottish Friends of Palestine:

Grab this chance to see Palestine as it really is – join the next ZYARA your ‘personal journey of discovery’ (Zyara website)

Zyara have a few places left on their visit to Palestine, 19 November to 3 December 2017

‘ZYARA are a small group of ordinary people who believe in seeing [Palestine] as it is.’ (Zyara website)

They organise a Zyara (visit) to Palestine once or twice a year, taking a maximum of 30 people along to volunteer in small projects and tour the country, meet grass roots organisations and people of all walks of life. Visitors enjoy the food, the landscape, and the company of ordinary people living under occupation.

Zyara have a few places left on their visit to Palestine, from 19 November to 3 December 2017.

You will travel to Jerusalem, Nazareth, Bethlehem, Nablus, Hebron, Haifa and other towns and cities. You will meet inspiring people, and tour old cities, visiting schools and universities. You will dine in authentic restaurants and bars. You will volunteer with local communities.

The activity-packed journey, from 19 November to 3 December 2017, will leave you with unforgettable memories.

Zyara have a few places left on their visit to Palestine, 19 November to 3 December 2017 and hope you can join them in this journey.

http://zyara.yolasite.com  or e-mail  zyarapalestine[@]gmail.com
– for more information
– to let Zyara know that you would like to join the visit
– if you know a friend who might be interested

The Zyara yolasite has LINKS to
FAQs, frequently asked questions
– a photo gallery of photos of zyaras taken by Zyara participants (2009 to June 2011).

Participants’ more recent contributions can be found on the
Zyara instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/zyarapalestine/

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1001 Olive Trees – San Ghanny choir in Oban: 15 Sep 2017

Dear All
Oban Concern for Palestine present:


1001 OLIVE TREES – Songs and Stories from Occupied Palestine

Friday, 15th September 2017, 6:30 for 7pm

Tickets at the door: £7 / Concessions: £5
Refreshments for a donation

See here or below for more details:

Oban welcomes the choir San Ghanny (Arabic: ‘we shall sing’) after their recent sold-out performance at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh.

The choir has visited Palestine under Israel’s occupation. The singers focus on Palestinian people’s inspirational somoud (‘steadfastness’) – their daily dignity and resistance to injustice under occupation. Obanites will also be able to learn an Arabic song and dance!

Any nett revenue from this event will be donated to San Ghanny in support of projects in Palestine.  More information from San Ghanny choir:

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36 days: Palestinian civil society leaders in Israeli detention without charge or trial

In today via amnesty international:

In violation of international humanitarian law, two Palestinian civil society leaders have been held in administrative detention in an Israeli prison without charge or trial for 36 days.

Khalida Jarrar is a Member of the Palestinian parliament. Khitam Saafin is a women’s union leader. Their administrative detention orders can be renewed indefinitely and with no prior notice. Their detention violates international humanitarian law.

Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin are being represented by lawyers from Addameer, a Palestinian non-governmental Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association. According to the lawyers, the Israeli military commander issued a three-month administrative detention order against Khitam Saafin on 9 July 2017, which a military judge confirmed on 12 July. Elected parliamentarian Khalida Jarrar was given a six-month administrative detention order on 12 July, which was confirmed by a military judge on 18 July. Although six months is the maximum period of detention for each order, they can be renewed indefinitely. Both women deny accusations of being members of an illegal organisation.

In the early hours of 2 July 2017, the two women were arrested by Israeli soldiers during separate raids on their homes. Eyewitnesses reported that between 40 and 50 armed Israeli soldiers conducted a raid at 3:30am that day to arrest Khitam Saafin in her home in Beitunia, a neighbourhood of Ramallah in the West Bank, which is Israeli-occupied territory. At around 4am that same day, Khalida Jarrar was arrested in her home in Ramallaha during a similar Israeli military raid; her phone, tablet and the hard drive of her home computer were confiscated.

Both women were first held in Ofer military compound near Ramallah. In the afternoon of 2 July, they were transferred to HaSharon prison inside Israel. According to international humanitarian law, detainees from occupied territories may not be held the occupying power’s territory. The women’s transfer to a prison inside Israel therefore violates international humanitarian law.
As in all cases of administrative detention by the state of Israel, the ‘evidence’ against Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin is secret. In violation of a central principle of fair trial standards, the ‘evidence’ may not be reviewed either by the detainees or by their lawyers.

The policies outlined above violate basic human rights and international humanitarian law. Israel has nevertheless pursued such policies for many decades. If they are harmful to Palestinian men, women and children, they also harm the Israeli soldiers, many of whom are young, impressionable men and women, under orders to carry out dawn raids and to take often brutal action against innocent civilians going about their daily lives. Most importantly, and contrary to official claims and propaganda, such policies have failed abysmally to make Israel safe and bring peace to the region.

We urge the Israeli government and Israeli armed forces,
– to release Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin immediately;
– to release all other prisoners held by Israel in administrative detention.

Alternatively, recognisable criminal charges must be brought immediately against any such detainees, and they must be brought to trial in conformity with international trial standards.

We also urge Israel to take immediate steps to end the practice of administrative detention.

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22 June 2017: PSC victory against UK Government: Our right to BDS protected

Dear All

Great news from our friends at PSC – Palestine Solidarity Campaign. We hasten to share this with you:
“We have some wonderful news. As you know, last week we took the British government to the Royal Courts of Justice to fight for our right to boycott.

“Today the judge delivered his verdict: WE WON!!

“The government was trying to stop local council pension schemes divesting from companies complicit in Israel’s human rights violations. Theresa May’sdisgraceful attempt to silence Palestinian voices and restrict our right to peaceful protest has failed.

“It’s a moment to treasure and a key victory for local democracy, the rule of law and for Palestine.

“We know the public is on our side, as our recent YouGov polling showed 43% of the British public thought BDS was reasonable.

“We now know that the law is on our side too. We couldn’t be happier that our right to boycott has been upheld by the court in the month that the illegal military occupation turns fifty years old.

“To fight this case, we needed your help and financial support. You came to our aid magnificently, and we were blown away by your generosity. Thank you for making this possible.

“We couldn’t have done it without all of you. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!

“Our task now is to take forward our campaigning with renewed vigour. We will as a priority be sending this judgment to all local councils and LGPS fund managers to let them know that the Government regulations have been ruled illegal, and that they once again need to ensure they are not investing funds in companies complicit in Israel’s violations of human rights and international law.

“Today we have drawn a line in the sand against the attempts to suppress the right to boycott and to stand up for Palestine.  Tomorrow lets  pick up our campaigning with a renewed vigour and spring in our step.  Free Free Palestine!!

“Ben Jamal, Director”
[PSC – Palestine Solidarity Campaign]

Screen Shot 2017-06-22 at 14.23.48
Please click here to donate to this PSC campaign.

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