12 May 2021
Responding to recent events in Israel-Palestine, New Israel Fund Australia released the following statement:
We are deeply saddened by the violence that has engulfed Israel and Gaza over the last few weeks, and the death and destruction that has escalated particularly in the last few days.
Sadly, this awful situation hasn’t come out of the blue.
For too long, authorities have treated Palestinians in East Jerusalem – whether in the form of evictions from their homes or restrictions on their movement during Ramadan celebrations – as a threat to be dealt with, rather than as part of the fabric of the city.
Our thoughts are with all the residents of Jerusalem during this difficult time, especially with those Palestinians facing eviction in Sheikh Jarrah. Despite attempts to frame this struggle as a real estate dispute, the reality is that it’s a story of injustice and discrimination.
That inequality has once again brought about a re-kindling of the wider conflict which has already taken the lives of innocent people, including children, inside Gaza and in Israel.
At this moment, we recognise that inequality and violence only perpetuate conflict. The cycle of violence is all too familiar. There is no justification for Hamas rockets fired indiscriminately toward civilians. And the Israeli government will not achieve a peaceful future by escalating a military operation in Gaza.
A peaceful future cannot be built on violence. Only a long-term agreement will end the rockets and the discrimination.
Our profound hope in the short-term is for a resumption of calm, followed by a wider reckoning of how to deliver peace, justice and equality for all.