The 8th annual Israeli Apartheid week is approaching, and it’s approaching fast. Israeli Apartheid Week is a week where Palestinian solidarity groups from around the globe mobilize events to spread awareness of the atrocities happening to the Palestinians because of Israel’s illegal occupation and apartheid system. It also is a week where these solidarity organizations can answer the call of the Palestinian civil society and launch or continue their Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign.
Israeli Apartheid Week starts on February 26th and runs until March 3rd. Solidarity groups are currently putting much effort into planning out their schedule for this week of panels, direct action, tabling, and educational events. Planning Israeli Apartheid Week is no piece of cake, and to see the dedication and passion of these individuals, who put effort into making Israeli Apartheid week one to remember, is awe inspiring.
At the University of New Mexico, where I attend, this will be Students for Justice in Palestine’s first time participating in Israeli Apartheid Week. We have been inspired by past efforts of other Palestinian solidarity organizations who have participated in Israeli Apartheid Week in past years. Though, Palestinian solidarity organizations get much resentment towards them from pro-Israel Zionist organizations, they continue their solidarity efforts year round with no hesitation, and with no fear. I commend the daily efforts put forth by these groups and individuals, but the reason why Israeli Apartheid Week remarkable to me is because it brings international unity in the Palestine Solidarity movement. It’s a time where distance might separate us, but we all come together with the same mission, to end Israeli apartheid and end the Illegal occupation. We relay the voice of those in Occupied Palestine who are affected by this inhumane occupation and apartheid, to our neighbors, our community members, and our fellow students.
Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions plays a key part of Israeli Apartheid Week. The Palestinian civil society has called that we support BDS, and it’s something I recommend all organizations participate in. It’s a non-violent way to support freedom, justice, equality, and human rights. The University of New Mexico Students for Justice in Palestine, along with other social justice organizations on campus are hoping to launch our first ever divestment campaign on campus during Israeli Apartheid week. It’s a great way not only to stand in solidarity with Palestinians, but also a way to take direct action in targeting the systematic oppression, apartheid, and illegal occupation.
Apartheid week is more than just a week of solidarity; it’s a week of community. It’s a week where we stand alongside our brothers and sisters around the world, chanting words of freedom, equality, and justice.
For more information on how you can get involved in Israeli Apartheid week please visit apartheidweek.org and e-mail your regional contact.