Israel

Today is Prisoners for Peace Day, when War Resisters' International and our members remember those imprisoned for their work for peace, and write to them in jail. Please join us!

Conscientious objectors Noa Gur Golan and Hadas Tal from Israel were imprisoned again for their refusal to be conscripted. Noa Gur Golan , 19, has already served 87 days in military prison, and was recently sentenced to another 30 days. Hadas Tal, 18, who's spent 50 days behind bars, was sentenced to 10 more days for her refusal to serve in the IDF.

The ongoing struggle for ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) Jews in Israel to maintain their status as draft-exempt continues. In the latest development in a story that has had many twists and turns, a 12th September decision by the Israeli Supreme Court ruled the status quo - an arrangement  allowing for mass exemptions for ultra-Orthodox Jews - was unconstitutional, and discriminatory. It gave the government a year to resolve the matter.

My name is Jamal Juma', I am the coordinator of the Palestinian grassroots movement against the wall and settlements, which is ghettoising and limiting the population in very limited areas surrounded by walls nine metres high, with all the surveillance and cameras and watch-towers and machine guns that have been fixed there, and military guards that are patrolling the area.

Antimilitarists have been making their presence felt at Pride marches around the world! In London, the NO PRIDE IN WAR group ended up leading the march, accompanied by the Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants bloc. In Tel Aviv in June, the Pinkwash Israel group blocked the Parade with signs reading ‘There’s no pride in occupation’, and for a few minutes the march came to a halt.

As the ISDEF (International Defense & HLS) arms fair got under way in Tel Aviv earlier this month, a shadow conference – INsecurity: 50 years of Exporting Occupation – was also taking place challenging the narrative of the military industries. Coalition of Women for Peace invited speakers from around the world to participate in a series of panel discussions with Palestinian and Israeli campaigners, drawing parallels between the experiences of those living in militarised communities such as the favelas of Brazil and the realities of the lives of Palestinians living under occupation.

In May and June 2017, activists in Canada, Israel and France have taken nonviolent direct action against arms fairs. In Ottawa, Canada, 40 activists blockaded the entrance to the CANSEC fair for over an hour. CANSEC is an annual two day event hosting 800 companies from across the arms industries, and attended by 12,000 people. As well as exhibits of weapons and other equipment, attendees were given the opportunity to hear presentations from government ministers and attend evening receptions sponsored by Lockheed Martin.

Our campaign of the month is "Deadly Exchange", a project of Jewish Voices for Peace . Deadly Exchange seeks to end exchange programs between police forces in the USA and Israel.

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