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A Palestinian Christian Response to Cancelling the Town Hall BDS Meeting, Calgary‏

26 October 2016 4797 Views

Open letter to the Unitarian Church of Calgary

Dear Reverend Debra Faulk,
Dear Board of Trustees of the Unitarian Church of Calgary,

Your cancellation of the Town Hall meeting for Oct. 27, 2016, that had been booked by Calgary Friends of the Green Party of Canada BDS Policy, was both distressing and disappointing and ultimately, an act of complicity in my peoples’ dispossession.
I am a Palestinian Christian from Bethlehem who cannot go back to his hometown because of the Apartheid and discriminatory policies of the state of Israel. Palestinian Christians constitute one third of the Palestinian people and most of them are living outside of their historic homeland Palestine; we are not allowed by Israel to go back home, similar to our Muslim brothers and sisters.
Let me remind you that Palestinian Christians are the first believers and are the Guardians of the Holy Places, and any “Christian” act that contributes to hindering solidarity with the Palestinian people in general is an act of betrayal to all of us.
Israel since its inception in 1948 has been empowered by many Western countries and churches, and because of this support, it gets away with grave violations of humanitarian law, UN resolutions and the Fourth Geneva Conventions.
We, the Palestinian people, can no longer endure this unconditional support that you are giving to our oppressor, to the point of even muffling our narrative.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu stated “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” You are not only neutral, you have chosen to concretely support our oppressor.
Sorry, but we are outraged, hurt and insulted. We will remember the names of all those institutions and individuals that have been complicit in supporting our oppressor, and that is why we are cc’ing Kairos Palestine and making this public. We will also remember all those who bravely confronted such intimidation, blackmail and power and who stood for peace, justice, equality and freedom.
Finally I would like to quote the late great anti-apartheid leader Nelson R. Mandela:
“The temptation … is to speak in muffled tones about an issue such as the right of the people of Palestine … yet we would be less than human if we did so.”

Hanna Kawas
Chairperson
Canada Palestine Association

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