I am a twenty something from London currently working as a human rights monitor in Israel and Occupied Palestine with EAPPI – the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (www.eappi.org).
EAPPI aims for an end to the occupation and the realisation of a just peace based on respect for international law and the implementation of UN resolutions. The programme was set up in 2002 following a call from heads of Churches in Jerusalem and civil society leaders for international observers to come and bear witness to life under occupation, and work together for a just peace. As an Ecumenical Accompanier, I provide protection by presence to communities vulnerable to violence in the occupied West Bank (as my colleagues do in East Jerusalem); monitor and report on human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law; and support Palestinians and Israelis non violently resisting the illegal occupation. In September – December 2012 I was based in Bethlehem, and I am currently based in Jericho covering the Jordan Valley.
You will find on this site my observations as an eye witness in the West Bank, the experiences of the people I meet and live alongside, who are not given a voice in the Western media, and from time to time my reflections.
One of the EAPPI guiding principles is ‘principled impartiality’, the EAPPI Code of Conduct states: ‘We do not take sides in this conflict and we do not discriminate against anyone but we are not neutral in terms of principles of human rights and international humanitarian law. We stand faithfully with the poor, the oppressed and the marginalised. We want to serve all parties in this conflict in a fair and unbiased manner in word and action.‘
The programme’s approach is based on our belief that the occupation is harmful not only to Palestinians but also to Israelis and from our concern about the suffering experienced by both peoples, Palestinians and Israelis. We acknowledge the humanity of everyone involved in this conflict, be they victims or perpetrators of violence and human rights abuses, but the programme demonstrates our solidarity with people on both sides of this conflict who strive non-violently to end the occupation and achieve a just peace.
Disclaimer: I am participating in a programme with Quaker Peace and Social Witness (QPSW) as an Ecumenical Accompanier serving on the World Council of Churches Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI). The views contained in this blog are personal to me and do not necessarily reflect those of QPSW or the WCC. If you would like to publish the information contained here (including posting on a website) or distribute it further, please first contact firstname.lastname@example.org or the EAPPI Communications Officer, email@example.com for permission.