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Courage to Refuse > News > A New Annual Day Was Launched in Tel Aviv on June 17th: Back To Israel - Saving Democracy, Fighting the Occupation
A New Annual Day Was Launched in Tel Aviv on June 17th: Back To Israel - Saving Democracy, Fighting the Occupation 19/06/2005
 
 

Back to Israel Day is a new annual day dedicated to the struggle of Israelis to end their state's enduring occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Back to Israel Day aims to raise the awareness to the severe damages that the occupation has been - and still is - causing Israel and its democracy.

Back to Israel Day will be marked on a set day every year, until the occupation ends.

This year, Back to Israel Day took place during 3 days of events. It was launched in Tel Aviv Museum square on Friday, June 17th, with a unique fair followed by a rock concert participated by leading Israeli musicians. More than 1500 supporters attended the fair and the concert throughout of the 4 hours of the happening.

Other activities of Back to Israel Day took place in various centers all over Israel: from the Northern town of Rosh Pinna, to the major cities of Israel - Haifa, Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem, and finally the Southern town of Sderot. Among these activities were theatre shows, movies screenings, talks, discussions and debates, as well as guided excursions to different sites in the West Bank. The demand for the latter was so high, that the organizers added extra tours.

An internet game, called "The Wild West Bank" was released, in Hebrew and in English, by the organizers of the events and won a major interest by Israeli and foreign media. This game, in which the players are asked to evacuate unauthorized outposts from the West Bank before they turn into settlements, was downloaded by more than 90,000 Israelis.

Back to Israel events became possible thanks to the cooperation of a coalition that included dozens of movements, organizations and public figures. Some of them from the central and left wings of the Israeli political arena, others - apolitical bodies (such as the Ha'bima theatre).

Courage to Refuse, whose members were among the initiators of Back to Israel, was a leading body in that coalition and invested many efforts and sources in the producing and organizing of the events.

To Back to Israel site and the list of the 2005 events' participants:

http://www.backtoisrael.org/indexEnglish.html

To download the internet game:

http://www.brand.co.il/unik/westbank/index_en.html

Media coverage:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4095364.stm

AP:

http://news.findlaw.com/ap/e/53/06-14-2005/33bc0013ac2e5609.html

Haaretz:

http://news.haaretz.co.il/hasen/spages/587750.html

Jerusalem post:

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull&cid=1118715540626&p=1078027574097

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull&cid=1118802600885 

bbc Turkish

http://www.bbc.co.uk/turkish/news/story/2005/06/050616_westbank_game.shtml

Jewish press agency (JTA)

http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/articles/2005/06/17/news/israel/uevacuation0617.txt

 


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