Archive - Mar 2011

March 13th

AT-TUWANI: Traumatizing the children of the South Hebron Hills

As I sat with the kids on 7 February 2011, they were becoming increasingly impatient. They had finished their two-week winter recess that provided a reprieve from the daily uncertainty of whether their journey home would be uneventful or dangerous. As the kids became increasingly eager to take the long way home, instead of waiting for the military escort, I became frustrated with their impatienceā€”even though I knew my frustration was misplaced.

IRAQ: The Great Wall peace community

A long white ribbon has been stretched from lamppost to lamppost blocking off streets leading to the city centre here in Suleimaniya.   All along the ribbon stand people in white sashes facing into the square where thousands have gathered to speak publicly to their Kurdish Regional Government.   The ribbon and the people along it make up what one might call ā€œthe great white wall of peace,ā€ white being the colour that symbolizes peace in this culture.  The wall has created a space of calm between the protestors and the military further back on the streets.



COLOMBIA: ā€œThey want to seize our territory by any means.ā€

14 March 2011
COLOMBIA: ā€œThey want to seize our territory by any means.ā€

Christian Peacemaker Teams has been accompanying the communities of the Agriculture and Mining Federation (Fedeagromisbol) from the Department of Southern Bolivar  since 2005. Their leader Teofilo Acuna, who was arrested in 2007, was recently acquitted of all responsibility for the crime of rebellionā€”news that strengthens the work and the commitment they have shown in recent years.

Below is a summary of the report on the human rights situation in Southern Bolivar released by Fedeagromisbol. Click here  for the full report (in Spanish).

IRAQ: Suleimaniyah demonstrators continue to resist, despite lack of media coverage

Military forces firing indiscriminately into crowds of unarmed demonstrators, arrests, torture and disappearances of  protest organizers, empty promises made by government leaders have  not deterred many Kurdish people from continuing their demonstrations.  They are demanding an end to what they call a corrupt government run primarily by tribal parties.

PALESTINE: Palestinian women call for justice on International Womenā€™s Day

 All across the occupied Palestinian territories, women took to the streets on Tuesday, 8 March 2011 in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of International Womenā€™s Day.

March 11th

ABORIGINAL JUSTICE: CPTers JuliĆ”n GutiĆ©rrez CastaƱo and Peter Haresnape join Six Nations in response to ā€œLies and Violenceā€ rally

 On 27 February 2011, Christian Peacemaker Teams, a member of the Six Nations Solidarity Network participated in the Caledonia rally supporting the people of Six Nations against Gary McHaleā€™s so-called ā€œTruth and Reconciliationā€ Rally.ā€¦

The recent rally appropriated the name ā€œTruth and Reconciliationā€ which in Canada commonly refers to the process of healing from the government and church-run residential schools designed to destroy Indigenous identity and families.  For McHale, the white community's suffering is apparently comparable.  The rally was to feature the placement of a monument on the reclamation site that would feature apologies from the OPP, province, and the Six Nations.

Gary McHale also issued a call for Christian Leaders to be active in their commitment to justice and to support his rally.  In response to McHaleā€™s letter, JuliĆ”n GutiĆ©rrez CastaƱo and Peter Haresnape had the following to say at the counter rally supporting the Six Nations.

(For more information, see

March 10th

IRAQ LETTER: The White Group agenda


Dear all,

We are learning about the fluid nature of the White Group.  They have a network of members, who have been able to think quickly, act decisively, assess the situation, and adjust accordingly.

Following the 26 February 2011 incident, the White Group drafted the following statement:

March 9th

CPT INTERNATIONAL: Create Space for Peace released on the eve of the first anniversary of the passing of CPT's Founding Director

Create Space for Peace is fresh from the printing press and available directly from CPT.
Create Space for Peace: 40 Years of Peacemaking draws directly from Gene Stoltzfusā€™ experiences around the world and contains pictures and stories of direct peace actions, along with critical assessments of current political and military trends.  It also documents the challenges and ecstasies on the inner journey of a passionate and joyful peacemaker.  This collection of Gene's writings and poignant reflections by others whom his life impacted will inspire those who wish to travel further on the road to global peace.
Order your copy of Create Space directly from CPT (email to )  CPT suggests a donation of $15 before March 11, 2011, or $20 after that date.  There are a variety of book launch events, check the createspace web site for details!



Prayers for Peacemakers, Mar. 09, 2011



Pray for people dealing with mental health issues, who have been attacked by police employing an inappropriate ā€œuse-of-force framework,ā€ instead of the mental health professionā€™s crisis intervention and de-escalation guidelines.


Doug Pritchard

Christian Peacemaker Teams

Toronto, Canada

March 7th

COLOMBIA: ACVC is legally recognized as Small Farmers Reserve Zone

Nearly 250 farmers along with delegates from human rights and accompaniment NGOs working in the Magdalena Medio, donor agencies, and the director of INCODER, among others, met in Puerto Maltilde on 16 February 2011 to witness the act of institutional recognition