Leading Israeli peace activist, Jeff Halper, founder and director of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD), arrives in the UK on Thursday 22 November, along with Palestinian Salim Shawamreh, who has had his house demolished four times by Israeli bulldozers.
Professor Halper predicts that Annapolis will result in the end of the two state solution. He said: “If it's true that Olmert intends that Israel permanently retain the settlement blocs, an Israeli 'greater' Jerusalem and effective control of the entire country to the Jordan River, then we will merely be substituting a sophisticated form of apartheid for occupation.”
On 11 June 2007, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (www.icahd.org/) launched a campaign to re-build every Palestinian home demolished by Israeli bulldozers during the next twelve months and to end the Occupation.
ICAHD say that around 300 Palestinian homes a year are being bulldozed down, stoking resentment and enmity.
The rebuilding is done as an act of both personal concern and political resistance, with 95 homes being rebuilt in the last five months, including 25 homes in A-Tir, a Bedouin village in the Negev.
Before June 2007, ICAHD had already rebuilt 35 houses. Palestinians and Israelis work together on the programme, seeking to build roots of peace and reconcilition in the soil of justice.
Since 1967, Israel has demolished over 18,000 homes, most done for administrative and military reasons.
This policy contributes toward the displacement of the Palestinian people, say critics, forcing them out of the country or confining them to tiny enclaves. In East Jerusalem alone, there are several thousand demolition orders on Palestinian homes.