Have you found any dates marked as "made in Israel'?  And news from Palestine and beyond
Palestine Israel Ecumenical Network - Update

How are your dates?

Thank you to the few people who have emailed us back reporting in about the sources of their dates.  We haven't been able to locate many stockists with settlement dates as yet.  If you haven't already, can you check your local wholefoods stores and specialty grocers, and let us know if you find any marked as Made in Israel?

Action Alerts

Join Act for Peace's letter writing campaign to the Foreign Minister to end the blockade of Gaza.

Join the EAPPI campaign to help save Susiya - and write a letter to Julie Bishop, or your local MP. Read sample letter.

The  III Freedom Flotilla is en-route to Gaza.  Follow them on Facebook and Twitter and spread the word of their courageous work. #welcomeflotilla3‬

Do you want a speaker/preacher?

PIEN has details of people all around Australia who have had powerful first hand experiences in the West Bank and Gaza.  We particularly recommend speakers who have served with the World Council of Churches'- EAPPI - the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel. Email Jessica at contact@pien.org.au to talk about possibilities.

News from and about Palestine

The Vatican Canonises two Palestinian nuns
Pope Francis declared Marie Alphonsine Ghattas and Mariam Baouardy the first two Palestinian saints of modern times.
Some 2,000 Palestinians gathered in the Vatican's St. Peter's Square to sing and pray and celebrate their saints. There, they heard the Pope pay tribute to the way in which the two new saints experienced the love of God.

Israel’s Charade of Democracy- A B'Tselem perspective
JERUSALEM — Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories is nearing the half-century mark, and Israel’s new right-wing government offers little hope of ending it. Nevertheless, the new government promises something else of value: clarity. And with that clarity, the opportunity to challenge the prolonged lie of the occupation’s “temporary” status. For if the occupation has become permanent in all but its name, what about the voting rights of Palestinians?

Thousands march for Jerusalem Day
Tens of thousands of Israeli settlers, right-wing activists and high-school students marched through Jerusalem's Old City for Jerusalem Day in May…The march passed through the Muslim quarter of the old city, and Israeli police officers forced Palestinian shop owners to close up, while Palestinian residents could not walk freely in the streets for hours. As the march entered the Old City, many Israeli youth taking part shouted "Death to all Arabs!", "Demolish the mosque, build the temple!" and ״Take revenge on the Palestinians!"

Extremist Jews ban Christian prayer in Jerusalem
Israeli Jews banned Christian prayer at the holy site of Jesus’ Last Supper, calling it “pagan ceremony.” Witnesses said that clashes erupted between the Israeli Jews and Christians -Palestinian and Israelis - when the Christians wanted to perform their prayer. The extremists claimed that Christian worshipers were desecrating their holy site and violating the Jews’ right to pray there. Vatican representatives denied the claims and referred to the incident as “grave.”

Threat of demolition looms for village of Susiya
300 or so villagers of Susiya face imminent displacement after Israel's High Court of Justice in May rejected a petition filed by residents to halt demolition orders for the village. The court ruling is the latest setback in a decades-long battle to fight forced displacement by the Israeli state. The unusual ruling by the court means that the largely herding and shepherding community could be displaced at any time when Israeli Civil Administration forces move in and demolish the residential and agricultural structures.”  See photos in Maan News;

A prelude to a new road: settlers dig out land south of Nablus
Bulldozers belonging to settlers razed land in village of Qariout south of Nablus city in preparation for the laying of a road which will connect the two settlements Shilo and Eilih, imposing on the village’s land. Security sources pointed out that these plans will lead to the seizure of more Palestinian land, saying only 366 acres now remain from the 22 thousand acres originally belonging to the village. The sources added that the village’s families had previously obtained a ruling from the Israeli Alia court which effectively barred settlers from approaching the area, which includes a number of ancient archeological sites. However, the settlers today commenced the bulldozing of the area, saying that it would be a strategic tourist area and religious site. 
Christian schools in Israel say budget cuts hurt community
It was an unlikely display of protesters: nuns cloaked in white, a black-clad priest clutching a golden scepter and dozens of Arab schoolchildren picketed outside Israel's Education Ministry. Their message, raised high on large banners: "Take your hands off our schools." School administrators are accusing Israel of slashing their funding as a pressure tactic to get them join the Israeli public school system. They are also complaining of discrimination, since as Israel moves to cut money to Christian schools it continues to fully fund large private school networks that cater to ultra-Orthodox Jews.

Pax Christi deplores refusal of entry of Secretary General to Palestine/Israel
In a press release, Pax Christi International has expressed deep that “José Henríquez, our Secretary General, is not with us in Bethlehem for our World Assembly and 70th Anniversary Celebrations…Refused entry into Palestine/Israel by the Israeli authorities, José’s absence is a great sadness to us. We fully support our Secretary General. Knowing him to be a man of integrity, we can think of no reason why he should be refused entry.”

Pax Christi International in favour of recognition of the state of Palestine and a ban on settlements
The World Assembly of Pax Christi urges all UN-member states to recognize the state of Palestine and to ban Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine. The 160 participants in the Assembly of the international Catholic peace movement in Bethlehem/West Bank from 13th to 17th of May are deeply concerned about Israeli policies that deny the rights of the Palestinian people and preclude the possibility of a two state solution.
Abbas calls on Palestinian Christians to 'stay with us'
President Mahmoud Abbas praised Palestinian Christians for the "distinctive dimension" their community and history gives to the Palestinian struggle. Recognizing them “for their steadfastness and effective contribution to building the Palestinian nation, and we call upon them to stay with us and not to be easily swept by the tide of migration".

Gaza economy 'on verge of collapse', with world's highest unemployment
Gaza's economy is on the "verge of collapse" and its unemployment rate is now the highest in the world, thanks to blockades, war and poor governance, according to a new report by the World Bank.

Palestinians to submit data on settlement expansion to ICC this month
Cartographer says maps and aerial photos of Israeli activity in West Bank and East Jerusalem will be sent to The Hague to bolster legal case.

The Vatican and the Palestinians
The practical effect of the Vatican’s decision to sign a treaty recognizing the state of Palestine is debatable, but it is a symbolic victory for Palestinians who are struggling to keep alive their dream of a Palestinian state, which has been thwarted by the Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

Obama: Netanyahu's anti-Arab remarks likely to have foreign policy consequences
"What I also think is that there has been a very concerted effort on the part of some political forces to equate being pro-Israel, and hence being supportive of the Jewish people, with a rubber stamp on a particular set of policies coming out of the Israeli government," Obama said. 

Hamas executed 23 Palestinians under cover of Gaza conflict, says Amnesty
Amnesty’s Middle East and North Africa director, Philip Luther, said: “It is absolutely appalling that, while Israeli forces were inflicting massive death and destruction upon the people in Gaza, Hamas forces took the opportunity to ruthlessly settle scores, carrying out a series of unlawful killings and other grave abuses".

International Workers' Day: The most invisible workers in Israel
B'Tselem - The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories
This is a direct outcome of the policy of Israeli authorities who prevent the development of an independent Palestinian economy that would provide employment to the West Bank. 

Trips to Palestine

APAN Study Tour
August 2015 & January 2016.
Lebanon, West Bank, Jordan and Gaza: "intense, extraordinary and a life-changing experience".  Last week to book for August/Sept tour.

Joint Advocacy Initiative - Journey for Justice
25 July- 2 August 2015
Join 17-25yr olds from around the world.

Alternative Tourism Group - Olive Picking Program
10-19 October 2015
Olive Picking Program, 10-19 October 2015, in Palestine. Registration available online

Young Adults tour to Palestine & Israel - with Bek Christensen and Rev Jenni Hughe
9-27 April, 2016

Know Thy Heritage
July/August 2015
Subsidised trip for Palestinian diaspora youth

Christ at the Checkpoint Conference
Bethlehem Bible College
March 7-10, 2016


Australian Christians who seek lasting peace for the people of Palestine and Israel. 

We aim to equip and 
inform Australian churches, inspired by Christ’s vision for universal reconciliation.


Executive Officer
Jessica Morrison 
0431 519 577