Day 7: Hebron: from thriving centre to ghost town

We made it through the checkpoint to the Jewish enclave in the old city of Hebron, which now contains some of the West Bank's most hardline settlers. The area is usually off-limits to non-Israelis, but we managed to wander through the ghost town that was once home to thousands of Palestinians. Now it is home … Continue reading Day 7: Hebron: from thriving centre to ghost town

Day 6: Bedouin struggle to maintain their way of life

By Mary Brodin This is Yisra with her son - one of her 10 children. They are Bedouins who live in the beautiful sheep-herding countryside near Mar Saba Monastery (between Bethlehem and the Dead Sea). Yisra, and 10 other Bedouin families who live close by, have lived in this area for centuries. They would like … Continue reading Day 6: Bedouin struggle to maintain their way of life

Day 6: Tear gassing the Theatre – actors and audience under fire

By Ruby Hirsch Yesterday we entered the Aida Refugee Camp, outside of Bethlehem, through a black gate holding  a huge key, symbolising the right of return for the residents of the camp. Many refugees within the West Bank, who were forcibly displaced during 1948 or 1967, still hold the keys to their former homes in … Continue reading Day 6: Tear gassing the Theatre – actors and audience under fire

The struggle to preserve life, heritage and Battir Village

Hassan’s story – Sybil, Tim and Ciar visited Battir, near Bethlehem, during some free time. Battir is a village between Jerusalem and Bethlehem. It's close to Deir Yassin, scene of the most notorious massacre of Palestinians by the Zionist terrorist groups in 1948. The village and its valley are beautiful – Roman aqueducts, elaborate terracing … Continue reading The struggle to preserve life, heritage and Battir Village

House demolitions: ethnic cleansing in East Jerusalem

The Freedom Ride took a day off today, so Mary Brodin took a trip to East Jerusalem and the site of two house demolitions. Here's her report: Two houses were built on this site in Ash-Shayyah on the slopes of the Mount of Olives in East Jerusalem. One was demolished ten years ago, the other … Continue reading House demolitions: ethnic cleansing in East Jerusalem

Day 4: The Freedom Ride joins Friday Struggle in Nabi Saleh

On Friday the Freedom Ride spent the day at Nabi Saleh where villagers hold a weekly protest against the theft of their land. Sybil sent this report: "Today we joined the weekly demonstration against the theft of Palestinian land and the settlement that overlooks Nabi Saleh. We marched down the hill and were met by … Continue reading Day 4: The Freedom Ride joins Friday Struggle in Nabi Saleh

Day 3: Freedom Ride – Playback theatre

For more information on the Freedom Ride you can also follow the official blog, which features more detail of what they're getting up to along with some beautiful pictures by Bryan MacCormack. After the day's activities the Freedom Riders and local Palestinians in Fayasel were treated to some playback theatre where actors reenacted personal stories. … Continue reading Day 3: Freedom Ride – Playback theatre

Militarised Zones as cover for land theft

Mary Brodin, one our Tower Hamlets campaigners on the Freedom Ride, sent this report: Large tracts of the Jordan Valley have been falsely declared military zones. Warning signs are erected forbidding entrance to this land. The original farmers are evicted and any that stray on to the area are shot at. The stolen land far … Continue reading Militarised Zones as cover for land theft

Day 3 of the Freedom Ride: painting the community

Day 3 and it was time to get creative. First up was brightening up the community centre the Jordan Valley Solidarity (JVS) Campaign had built. The idea was to not only make the building look a little brighter, but to get the kids involved with the creativity too. Tim Sanders, our very own cartoonist, began … Continue reading Day 3 of the Freedom Ride: painting the community

Day 2 of the Freedom Ride: Jordan Valley

Day Two of the Freedom Ride included a visit to Fasayel, a remote village in the Jordan valley, of which 95% is under occupation. It used to be a popular tourist destination and described as the bread basket of Palestine due to all-year farming its climate supports. Now it is littered with checkpoints making travel … Continue reading Day 2 of the Freedom Ride: Jordan Valley