A space set up by the World Council of Churches (WCC) Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) at the WCC’s 10th Assembly in Busan, Republic of Korea, has been sharing the realities of people living in the Palestinian occupied territory, through images, presentation and conversations stressing the need for just-peace in the region.
In a conversation at the EAPPI space, Adli Daana, Learning for Development officer at UNICEF – a supporting organisation of the EAAPI, spoke about the significance of the WCC assembly theme for the Israel Palestine conflict. The theme is “God of life, lead us to justice and peace”.
Daana, a Palestinian himself based in the occupied Palestinian territory, said the need for peace in the region is pertinent to the work of all humanitarian organisations, including UNICEF.
He added that UNICEF’s work is purely humanitarian, focusing more on expanding schools, helping to create safe environments for the Palestinian children. Yet, he said, by collaborating with the EAPPI, “We hope to build initiatives that promote reconciliation and peace-building.”
Daana appreciates the work of the EAPPI, which he said plays an important role in monitoring human rights violations in the territory, as well as in assisting children in situations where they are faced with threats such as arrests at the hands of Israeli soldiers.
On 4 November 2013, Norwegian Church Aid and the Church of Norway organised a Madang workshop attended by over 100 participants in the assembly. The workshop showed how the EAPPI has been a useful instrument for “churches seeking just peace” in the Palestine-Israel conflict, through protection and advocacy.
Some of the former volunteers of the EAPPI, each of whom spent three months in the West Bank and engaged in advocacy for the protection of human rights in the occupied territory, shared their experiences at the EAPPI space.
The space also hosted a series of well-attended side events called “Tea Time for a Just Peace in Palestine and Israel”, where issues pertaining to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict were discussed.