OneVoice's Palestinian activists urge Israeli response to Arab Peace Initiative
NEW YORK, April 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- From a village near Jenin that borders on the 1967 line, OneVoice Palestine youth activists and locals released into Israel hundreds of helium balloons carrying the text of the Arab Peace Initiative on Saturday, drawing attention toward this historic opportunity.
Hundreds of locals, wearing flag caps of countries supporting the regional peace plan, participated in the activity, which was co-sponsored by Jenin's governor and the municipality, to mark the document's tenth anniversary. They called on all Israelis to pressure their politicians into accepting the initiative as a framework for serious regional negotiations to achieve the two-state solution and end the Arab-Israeli conflict. Jenin Deputy Governor Ahmad al-Qassam, Minister of Prisoner Affairs Ashraf al-Ajrami, Fatah spokesman Mahmoud Labadi, and other municipal officials also attended the headline-grabbing event.
"We're urging the Israeli public to demand from their government a real response to the Arab Peace Initiative," said Samer Makhlouf, executive director of OneVoice Palestine. "The document has never been withdrawn or rejected by any Arab state, but despite its apparent resilience, we cannot expect it stay on the table forever."
Exactly 10 years ago, the 22 Arab League member states came together in Beirut to propose a peace plan to end the Arab-Israeli conflict. The Arab Peace Initiative offered a comprehensive resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the normalization of relations between Israel and its Arab neighbors. It represented an abrupt about-face, from the League's refusal to engage with Israel to the potential for a new era of regional stability and cooperation. While not an end-point for negotiations, the document sets a positive new starting point.
Unfortunately, Israel never accepted the Arab Peace Initiative as a basis for peace discussions. Among Ariel Sharon's 14 reservations to the 2003 Road Map, reservation #10 explicitly rejected the Arab Peace Initiative. Since then, it has lain dormant.
"Accepting the Arab Peace Initiative as a framework for serious regional negotiations is a far better approach than outright rejection wrapped in unsupportable assertions that Israel has done everything it can for peace over the past 64 years and the Palestinians have only been obstructionist," said OneVoice CEO Howard Sumka.
The event is part of OneVoice Palestine's campaign, launched in February, demanding the Israeli government to halt its settlement policy and return to negotiations on the basis of the Arab Peace Initiative. From tree plantings in Hebron and Bethlehem and distribution of flyers and bumper stickers across the West Bank, to an online campaign with banners on top local news sites – OneVoice Palestine is creating momentum for the peace plan.
Separately, OneVoice Israel is complementing the effort though parallel action, igniting conversations about the Arab Peace Initiative across their eight university chapters, from Haifa to Sderot. Next month, they will mobilize people in the heart of Tel Aviv, bringing prominent public figures to make soap-box speeches while a giant ice cube containing the Arab Peace Initiative text slowly melts away. Working with the growing Two-State Solution Caucus, they will then deliver their message loudly in the Knesset.
OneVoice is an international grassroots movement that aims to amplify the voice of Israeli and Palestinian moderates, empowering them to demand a two-state solution. The movement educates and trains Israeli and Palestinian youth in leadership skills, non-violent activism, and democratic principles.
SOURCE The OneVoice Movement
More by this Source
Members of Knesset & OneVoice Movement Inaugurate Two-State Solution Caucus in Israeli Knesset
17 May, 2013, 18:57 BST
Secretary Kerry invited to two-state solution Knesset Caucus by MK Bar
06 Jun, 2013, 21:25 BST
Journalists and Bloggers
Visit PR Newswire for Journalists for releases, photos and customised feeds just for Media.
View and download archived video content distributed by MultiVu on The Digital Center.
Until you hear the full story, why would you invest?
Making sound investment decisions can be difficult. You can study the figures and read the analyst recommendations, but how do you really know the story behind company strategy? How can you get answers to your questions?
The Private Investor Network helps you to reach an informed decision on the stocks you pick. Interactive presentations from UK listed companies give you the kind of access previously enjoyed only by the big fund managers. And with keynote speeches from industry experts, downloadable content and an investor lounge where you can swap tips with your peers, you can invest with confidence.
For more information, and to register for FREE, visit us at www.privateinvestornetwork.co.uk
Get content for your website
Enhance your website's or blog's content with PR Newswire's customised real-time news feeds.
Contact PR Newswire
Send us an email at MarketingUK@prnewswire.co.uk or call us at +44 (0)20 7454 5382
Become a PR Newswire client
Request more information about PR Newswire products & services or call us at +44 (0)20 7454 5382