Pro-Palestinian activists in Halifax feel pressured to remain silent about Israeli apartheid and suppression of Palestinians in Palestine. Here in Nova Scotia this manifests in the form of intimidating threats they experience while going about their daily business in the city. It is also exemplified in the overly aggressive policing during the Nakba Day car rally last week.

Palestinian American poet’s Lena Khalaf Tuffaha Running Orders was circulating widely on the internet in 2014, when over 2100 Palestinians, most of whom were civilians, were killed during Israel’s “Operation Protective Edge.” Sadly nothing much has changed. At least 232 Palestinians, including 65 children, were killed during the Israeli bombardment of Gaza that ended with the May 20 ceasefire.

Stephen Wentzell on the injunction banning protests during the current lockdown: “This is a slippery slope that we as Nova Scotians should pause and reflect on. And as we have seen before, when given the powers police will disproportionately focus on poor and/or racialized people.”

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, today, on Saturday, May 15th, we are providing the community with the answer to that question and the historical context of the Nakba. This will be done so with a panel discussion of 6 individuals, whom all have fought vehemently for Palestinian rights in Canada. The discussion will be moderated by Rana Zaman.

While many Nova Scotians were preparing to watch the Perseid meteor showers, some 25 Haligonians gathered in a backyard to hear Michael Lynk, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory, discuss what’s going on in Gaza, and in Palestine/Israel.

“I have been reading about the prisoners’ strike at Burnside. I understand that the conditions are not humane and that prisoners at Burnside are asking for necessary improvements in health care, exercise, visits, food, quality of air and library access. As a Palestinian and former resident of Gaza, I get the feeling that I am reading about the people of Palestine in general and Gaza in particular.”