April 5, 2007
Read by our friend Jean-Guy Greilsamer of our affiliated group, Union Juive
Française pour la Paix (France).
On behalf of the European Jews for a Just Peace it is my pleasure to convey a
message to the Second Annual Bil’in International Conference.
Last year, on the occasion of the International Conference convened in Bil’in on the
first anniversary of nonviolent resistance, 25 February 2006, the meeting of the
Executive Committee of EJJP was held in this village. The members had the honour
to meet the extraordinarily brave people of the village of Bil’in, who have been
holding regular, nonviolent demonstrations, under tremendous odds, against the
theft of their land by Israel. This inspiring struggle has been made with great
courage, resourcefulness and persistence.
There have been countless arrests, detainments and brutality against the people of
Bil’in, as everywhere else in the Occupied Territories. Nevertheless, your nonviolent
struggle has continued and has become a symbol of bravery for those of us who live
abroad and who are part of the worldwide movement to put an end to the Israeli
occupation of Palestinian land.
We wish to express our great admiration for those Israelis and Palestinians, who are
working together in Bil’in in the common struggle to fight against the occupation.
You, the activists and inhabitants of the village, have always welcomed Jews and
Israelis who have come here to join you. This is living proof that coexistence
between Israelis and Palestinians is indeed possible.
International peace activists have come to Bil’in regularly. Many have been chased,
beaten and wounded, but have not relinquished their ideals and have demonstrated
their solidarity with the Palestinian people in their fight for freedom from the Israeli
Following our participation at last year’s Conference the members of the European
Jews for a Just Peace have shown films about Bil’in in various countries of Europe
and spoken about the courageous, nonviolent actions of your and other villages in
the Occupied Territories against land confiscation.
We have not forgotten the promise made by the Executive Committee last year.
Every first Friday in the month, an International Bil’in Day has been held in the
centre of Berlin. These successful vigils have taken place on a regular basis to
inform people about your outstanding village and the resistance against the Israeli
occupation in the Palestinian Territories. These vigils have been held by the Middle
East Group together with our affiliated group, the Jewish Voice for a Just Peace.
Both groups feel a deep connection with you.
EJJP wishes to assure you of its admiration and continued support. Together with
the growing movement of those opposing the Israeli occupation we will bring the
illegal and unjust occupation of Palestinian land to an end.
We regret very much not being able to attend the International Conference this year
but send you our warmest good wishes and hopes for a productive and fruitful
Executive Committee, EJJP
Amsterdam, 5 April 2007