SCM Britain celebrates the news of a ceasefire between Israel and Palestine, but we recognise that this is the first step and not the last. We stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine and call upon SCM members and the wider Church to continue to learn about what’s happening, raise awareness in our communities, amplify Palestinian voices, and take action.
At least 230 people, including 65 children, have been killed by Israeli airstrikes in the Gaza Strip since the latest violence began. Although many media outlets point to violence from both sides, it must be acknowledged that Palestine is the much weaker occupied group who have had refugee camps, hospitals, media outlets, and other civilian buildings targeted by high-tech Israeli attacks. Israel’s military is given billions of dollars in military aid each year and their actions are met with impunity from Western governments, while Palestinians are disproportionately criticised and further oppressed. SCM Britain condemns all violence.
The World Student Christian Federation, the international group of Student Christian Movements to which we belong, passed a policy paper in 2015 to support and advocate for the Palestinian communities based on international law, a Human Rights perspective and the theology of liberation perspective on the preferential option for the poor and those who are oppressed. As part of this, we believe that Christians cannot remain silent in the face of the human rights violations, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and apartheid that is currently taking place in Palestine. Below are some resources for learning and action.
Israel-Palestine: Avoiding Antisemitic and Islamophobic Hate Speech from Solutions Not Sides
You can also join this Palestinian Liberation Theology Reading Group that SCM Member Victoria Turner is starting. Get in touch with her to register your interest at V.A.Turner@sms.ed.ac.uk.
Christian Aid offers the following prayer points
- Pray for the immediate cessation of all violence.
- Pray for the halting of evictions of Palestinian families from East Jerusalem.
- Pray for all households facing the threat of displacement by settler organisations that this threat will be removed.
- Pray for effective international intervention and the ground invasion of Gaza would not happen.
- Pray for all Palestinian and Israeli children living in fear, that they may be comforted and kept safe.
- Pray that all those working for peace in Israel and Palestinian will be strengthened.
- Pray for Palestinians and Israelis to be treated as equals, with their dignity upheld, and for all who live there to be secure.