Archive

July 3rd, 2016

AL-KHALIL (HEBRON): A week in photos, 25 June-2 July 2016

 

Age limitations

Pictured here: On the last Friday of  Ramadan, Israeli Border Police prevented Palestinian worshipers between 15-25 years old from reaching the Ibrahimi Mosque.  This young boy, and later on the young woman in the picture were not allowed to pass. 

 (01/07/2016)
 

June 30th

Prayers for Peacemakers June 30, 2016

Prayers for Peacemakers June 30, 2016

This morning 17-year-old Muhammad Nasser Tarayra murdered 13-year-old Hallel Yafa Ariel in the Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba.  Tarayra was then shot and killed.  His family’s home in the Hebron-area village of Bani Naim will be demolished. Ever since Israeli soldiers killed Tarayra’s cousin, he had expressed a wish for death on his Facebook page.  Please pray for all the families mourning the loss of loved ones.  Please pray for all the families facing “price tag” attacks by settlers, which could include Campaign for Secure Dwellings families in the Beqa’a Valley, near Bani Naim, as well as people in the Old City of Hebron. 

*Epixel for Peacemakers  July 3, 2016  

To you, O LORD, I cried, and to the LORD I made supplication: "What profit is there in my death, if I go down to the Pit? 
Will the dust praise you? Will it tell of your faithfulness?" 
Psalm 39:8-9

 
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text  from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary readings.

June 29th

COLOMBIA: The Popular Strike--A fight that never ends

 

Almost every year since August 2013 farmers in Colombia have taken to the main highways to demand guarantees from the government necessary to cultivate their land and thus maintain a livelihood to support their families; the campesinos, Indigenous people, and Afro-Colombians are not only demanding respect for their territories but also calling for a revision of national policies that currently threaten the development of the rural sector.
These mobilizations are supported by several sectors including students, healthcare professionals, teachers, religious groups and unions, which in turn represent an array of issues affecting the vast majority of the population.

June 28th

CPT INTERNATIONAL REFLECTION: Pretty

 â€śSo pretty, what a waste,” he said with a smile on his face.  

An older gentleman approached me at a gathering recently and started a conversation with those words. I think he thought he was giving me a compliment.

Seriously?

I mean, SERIOUSLY?

While I have control over the way I care for myself, I do not have control over the face I was born with, or my hair, or the bones and cartilage that give shape to my skin. These parts of my being are nothing to take pride in because I did nothing to “earn” them.  

The man who made the comment knows me.

He knows I've been a teacher of Spanish and theology. 

He knows I’ve traveled the world and taught English in India and Palestine.

He knows I’ve been a human rights defender in Palestine.

June 27th

COLOMBIA: Peace, reconciliation and coexistence—closer all the time

[Note: The following piece by CPT Colombia team partner and frequent delegation resource Francisco Jose Campo was written before the signing of the Havana Peace Accords last week.  It has been adapted for CPTnet and to reflect that reality.]

The national yearning for peace, reconciliation and coexistence between compatriots seems continuously more real than utopian. Undeniably, it’s darkest before the dawn. But the dawn of peace that is revealing itself to us is preceded by a dreadful darkness in this long night of a conflict that is not only military (as the military face of the conflict is becoming less vicious), but one that is ideological and political. Those on the far right are playing with the possibility of torpedoing the tangible advances of the negotiations, and the imminent signing of a political accord. Anti-restitution activity is the particular proof in this case. 

June 23rd

COLOMBIA URGENT ACTION: Stop the criminalization of Colombian human rights defenders!

 

 

Dopa petition

 CPT Colombia asks the Colombian authorities to put a stop to the growing trend of judicial persecution and detention of campesino human rights defenders who are fighting for their rights to land and territory.

Alvaro Garcia, campesino leader from the communities of El Guayabo and Bella Union and member of the Victims Association of Magdalena Medio (ASORVIMM), remains incarcerated for almost two months now under false criminal charges.  He is one of two CPT partners who have suffered political persecution and imprisonment in the last nine months.  

Three other leaders from El Guayabo and Bella Union currently have arrest warrants similar to that of Alvaro’s, which severely encumbers the community’s legal struggle and distracts the authorities’ attention from the larger land issue at play.

Join us in asking that the authorities drop charges for all four leaders, release Alvaro and respect the campesinos’ right to remain on the land as the country moves forward towards a post-conflict reality.  

 

SIGN HERE

June 22nd

Prayers for Peacemakers, June 22, 2016 Europe

Prayers for Peacemakers, June 22, 2016  Europe

Give thanks for members of the new CPT-Mediterranean Team, which has just finished its first week together on Lesvos, Greece.  Pray for ongoing encouragement in their work, as Western governments try to avoid taking responsibility for refugees fleeing unbearable conditions in their homelands.

*Epixel for Peacemakers  June 25, 2016  
 
For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Galatians 5:14
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text  from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary readings.

June 20th

CPT MEDITERRANEAN BLOG: Deep and violent connections


It’s a profound day today.

The celebration of Juneteenth (when Africans enslaved in the United States learned of their freedom, declared by the Emancipation Proclamation almost two years earlier). 

The one-year anniversary of the massacre of the church at Mother Emanuel AME folks in Charleston, SC.

The one-week anniversary of the Pulse Orlando club shooting. 

It’s also Father’s Day, so blessings to the Dads out there…especially those redefining traditional masculinity and providing open-minded and gentle ways of nurturing children (or ideas!) into wholeness. 

Tomorrow continues the meaningful days (of course every day we’re alive it’s meaningful!) It’s solstice, and the middle of Ramadan. It only comes around in the summer every 33 years.  Given global weirding, this is a hot one! 

It’s also World Refugee Day. Being here, working with refugees…this day now means more to me than ever before.  I knew theoretically the difficulty of being a refugee: the bureaucracy of paperwork and sometimes arbitrariness of official decisions, long lines, inadequate resources, the fast friendships, the cramped camps, the waiting, oh the waiting. 

Our Christian Peacemaker Team is accompanying refugees in Mytilene, Lesbos, Greece. As Executive Director I have a chance to do a two-week team visit. I sat across the table from a man from Afghanistan yesterday. Neither he nor I are from Greece or speak Greek. I don’t speak Dari yet, and he just began the English classes offered to refugees. We don’t know each other’s names and yet we are deeply and violently connected. My village paid for his village to be bombed (through the US-led war in Afghanistan).

We kind of smile at each other to acknowledge a greeting, but neither of us are happy about the situation so we exchange a glance of agreement that there is no use pretending we are. I can hope that through our work he and I can feel that there is another way to connect as well, through nonviolent interaction. But if it ends there it is not enough, in a way. I want to exchange the real smile that comes after a day of joint action to bring change to global functioning. Tomorrow is World Refugee Day and we will do a public witness action that reminds the public that refugees are not invisible, and mourns the loss of over 1,600 people that have died in crossing by boat from Turkey to Greece. We will thank the Lesbians for being so welcoming to those who made it, and together with them brainstorm ways to insure safe passage for all and challenge EU and US and local policies that lead to so many people being frighteningly expelled from their homes. 

June 16th

IRAQI KURDISTAN: May 2016 Newsletter--Neighbors from different worlds

Newsletter

May 2016
 
 

 

Iraqi Kurdistan

 
We are neighbors from different worlds
-CPT May Delegation-
 
We are pleased to welcome nine delegates from the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship and Mennonite Church from the U.S.A.

It has always been a pleasure for CPTers to unite people and celebrate the diversities. We started our May delegation by visiting a local Muslim leader and activist Mullah Nader and talked about bringing peace and supporting diverse minorities in Kurdistan society.

CPT has met Mullah Nader in several peaceful civil society demonstrations. He told the group that his role is supporting people with the Holy Quran's teaching about justice and respect. Because he speaks about the injustice, the suffering of the people under corrupt powers, and protests together with other mullahs against wars and violence, he began receiving threats.

June 15th

Prayers for Peacemakers, June 15, 2016

Prayers for Peacemakers, June 15, 2016

Pray for the people of Barrancabermeja, Colombia.  The mayor plans to sell their public water company to a private corporation, which has human rights organizations quite worried.  Pray for the unionized workers at the water company who may lose their jobs if that happens.  

 

*Epixel for Peacemakers June 19, 2016  

 Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people; from those who are deceitful and unjust deliver me! Psalm 43:1

 
 *epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text  from the upcoming  Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary readings.