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October 13th, 2016

IRAQI KURDISTAN: September 2016 newsletter--the people resist the government’s corruption

 

 

September 2016
 
 
 

Iraqi Kurdistan

 
Demonstrations in Iraqi Kurdistan
I demand that my life and my family's lives be saved 
CPT Iraqi Kurdistan Team
Hemn Bnaslawayi at CPT house. Photo by: Julie Brown.
It was around 6:30 when Asaish security forces suddenly arrived at Hemin’s home in Erbil.  They were in official cars with logos. As the security forces began to pull Hemn from the premises his fifteen year old son began to shout and ask why they were taking his father.  It was then that an officer punched Hemin’s son in the face and arrested him.  The officers also became physical with his pregnant wife. The officers put a bag over Hemin’s head and forced him into their car while they beat his son and put him into a different car.

Read the full report here

October 12th

Prayers for Peacemakers, October 12, 2016

Prayers for Peacemakers, October 12, 2016

Give thanks for seven new CPTers who recently completed training in the Czech Republic and the fresh energy they will bring to teams working in the field. Pray for their strength and wisdom as they join our Indigenous, Palestinian, Kurdish, and Colombian partners and partners working with refugees and migrants to transform violence through the nonviolent power of God’s truth.

 

*Epixel for Peacemakers  October 16, 2016 
The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore. Psalm 121:5-8
 
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary  readings

October 11th

COLOMBIA: Colombians reject peace deal. Why and what next?

 

A woman looks for her identification number on a chart at a local voting station in Barrancabermeja. (CPT/Caldwell Manners)

Nine days have passed since the 2 October referendum when 6,431,376 Colombians voted to reject the peace agreement between the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP). The slim win of the “No” vote, by a margin of 54,000, leaves the country in a highly polarized state.

On September 26 with the whole world watching, President Juan Manuel Santos quoted the national anthem, “The horrible night has ceased,” after signing the 297-page peace agreement with the FARC. The signing set at the historic city of Cartagena with heads of state and dignitaries from fifteen countries present was a symbolic and powerful move to sway a divided country to vote in favor of the agreement. In 2013, Santos proposed a referendum in hopes to seal the agreement with a public show of confidence. He promised a simple “Sí” or  “No” question—“Do you support the final agreement to end the conflict and the construction of a stable and long-lasting peace?” The country would take on the responsibility to ratify the agreement. It didn’t work.

October 10th

CPT INTERNATIONAL: CPT Seeks Psychosocial Care Coordinator

 

Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is accepting expressions of interest for the full-time position of: Psychosocial Care Coordinator.  

 Team: Independent Consultant accountable to CPT’s Administrative Team

Reports to Program Director

Terms: Independent Consultant, full-time, 40 hours/week, three-year appointment

Compensation: to be negotiated

Location: flexible; international travel required

Start Date: 1 December 2016

Application Deadline: 30 October 2016 

Please send resumé and statement of motivation to program@cpt.org. Full job description available upon request. 

October 7th

MEDITERRANEAN: My first working day in Pipka—the love letter

 

English lessons were slow getting started. Peggy walked around the camp by the cabins and tents to let interested refugees know the session would soon begin. Lunch finished late, but soon two young women showed up, Farsi-speakers, maybe sisters. 

Peggy had been teaching for a few days now. I was there to observe her technique. Soon a man joined us, possibly around thirty years old, Pakistani. He had a shy manner, and was hesitant to approach, but he emitted a kind of indefinable radiance. He asked me if I could help him with “deep” words. At first, I thought he wanted to talk philosophy, but, no, he wanted words that had to do with feelings, specifically words to do with love. 

“Love,” though was to simple a word for what he had in mind. And he wanted, as it turned out, full sentences:

“You are profoundly beautiful.”

“My heart is full of affection for you.”

“I adore you.” 

It became quickly clear to me that he wanted to compose a love letter. He had met a Pakistani-American woman here on Lesvos and been on a couple of dates.  Now he wanted to express how he felt about her: 

October 6th

Indigenous Peoples Solidarity: CPT-IPS team visits No Dakota Access Pipeline camps


"The Creator is our weapon," a speaker said at a community meeting in the Sacred Stone Spirit camp, "and we need no other." 

Responding to an inquiry about presence at the No Dakota Access Pipeline camps near Cannonball, ND, the CPT-Indigenous Peoples Solidarity team recently organized a short trip to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation to explore what support they could offer water defenders. The camps have become a gathering place for many peoples opposing the threat the Bakken oil pipeline poses to the Missouri River and other shared waterways.   

Our small delegation camped at the Sacred Stone Spirit Camp, the first of three camps to be established at Standing Rock. Ladonna Brave Bull Allard, a Lakota tribal historian on whose land the camp is located, described the objectives of the camp as protecting the water, preventing the Dakota Access Pipeline, building a community of people who care for and respect one another and the land, and bringing about a shift in world thought with regard to humans' relationship with the earth. During our time there, we heard repeatedly that "this is a camp founded on prayer."  

October 5th

Prayers for Peacemakers 5 October 2016 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers 5 October 2016   Colombia 

Pray for those in living in Colombia's conflict zones: campesinos, indigenous peoples, displaced people and Afro-Colombians, most of whom voted overwhelmingly in favor for the peace referendum, which was defeated on Sunday.  Pray for Christian Peacemaker Teams-Colombia and their partners on the ground: human rights workers, peace activists, women’s rights activists, labor rights activists, etc.  They are heartbroken and their future is uncertain.

*Epixel for Peacemakers  October 2, 2016 
Christian Peacemaker Teams - Colombia
For you, O God, have tested us; you have tried us as silver is tried.
you brought us into the net; you laid burdens on our backs; Psalms 66:10-11
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary  readings

October 4th

AL-KHALIL (HEBRON): A week in photos 27 September-3 October 2016

 

Obstacle to Childhood 

Pictured here: With the Israeli military occupying the streets, children in Hebron constantly face restrictions to play and to simply be kids. 
(September 27, 2016)

October 3rd

IRAQI KURDISTAN: I am teaching Math; the government is teaching corruption. I am consolidating society; the government is dividing it

 

Since the ISIS war started, or since the Kurdish leaders in Northern Iraq decided to engage in the war, the name of the Peshmerga (Kurdish fighters) has become well known around the world. Kurdish people are brave; Kurdish people are heroes. 

Before ISIS entered Iraq, the Kurdish government was in a conflict with the Iraqi Central Government. The main issue was about oil as well as the Peshmerga's salary. The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) wanted to sell oil and have an independent economy. Because of this Kurdish desire for autonomy, the Iraqi Central Government no longer wanted to send salaries to the Peshmerga and the Kurdish leaders did not want to put the Peshmerga under Iraqi control. 

September 30th

MEDITERRANEAN: No easy answers

 

It’s 6 a.m. in Iraklio. The hotel clerk has called a cab, and we are waiting with our luggage in the lobby. We’ve been three weeks here in Crete visiting family and now are joining CPT-Europe’s Mediterranean Project on the island of Lesvos. We don’t quite know what our role will be there or what tasks we will be called on to perform as volunteers.

The clerk wants to talk about the refugees. “Of course, we must help them,” he says. “It’s not their fault; it’s not the fault of the Greek people. But it’s killing us,” he says. He means economically. “Here in Crete, on this strip alone” – he points outside toward Leoforios Kalokairiou “– two hundred businesses have failed. Store after store, closed.” He had been working at a resort in Malia, usually the busiest place in Crete during the summer season, but the number of days he could get work was getting fewer and fewer. He had to come here to Iraklio where the tourism by native Greeks is more reliable.