Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Canadian Parliamentarians in Palestine

Between August 8th and 13th three Canadian Members of Parliament (MPs) visited Palestine to see for themselves how the Palestinian people live under occupation and blockade.

Libby Davies (NDP), Borys Wrzesnewskyj (Lib) and Richard Nadeau (Bloc), covered their trip costs out of their own pockets (not paid by the Canadian government or parliament). I accompanied them as a guide, translator and, sometimes, facilitator. Accompanying them were also Kim Elliot, Jase Tanner and Sarah Marois (Gaza part of the trip only).

The trip started in Amman, Jordan on August 8th where we met with the speaker of the Jordanian parliament and the Secretary General of the Jordanian ministry of foreign affairs before heading to the West Bank.

In the West bank we visited the Palestinian house evacuations in Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem, the Jewish settlements in Hebron, Bil'in village, an ICHAD (Israeli Committee Against House Demolition) Palestinian home rebuilding project near Jerusalem, as well as meeting the PA minister of foreign affairs, the Palestinian Negotiations team, Dr, Mostafa Barghouti, Danny Seidermann, Jeff Halper and UNRWA officials.

On August 12th we entered Gaza from Rafah, Egypt where we visited the
areas most devastated by the Israeli invasion of Dec./Jan., met with members of the Gaza industry board, Dr. Iyad Sarraj, the Gaza fishermen syndicate, doctors from al-Awda hospital, UNRWA officials and visited the tunnel area near the Egyptian border.

More photos can be found at the following links:
MPs' experience:
Images from the West Bank:
Images from Gaza:

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