Throughout the month, CJPP participated in numerous vigils and rallies in Sydney protesting the Israeli “Operation Cast Lead” invasion of Gaza.
14 January: Newspaper advertisement campaign: CJPP endorsed and requested list members to support an initiative by Australians for Palestine (AFP) and Women for Palestine (WFP) to raise funds for a newspaper advertisement campaign calling on Australians to “say ‘NO’ to Israel’s war crimes.” The newspaper advertisement appeared in eight major Australian newspapers on 23 January.
21 January 2009: Leaflet produced “The Gaza Crisis – What you can do”: CJPP produces a guide containing suggestions for where to donate money as well as how to learn more about Palestine and advice on responding to politicians and media outlets.
7 February: Forum “Justice for Palestine – Stopping the war on Gaza and starting the peace”: two CJPP members, B.Sawalha & V.Porzsolt, participated in a Greens forum about Palestine, exploring the plight of a dispossessed people, the history of the region, moral responses and the way forward.
9 March: Film screening “The Iron Wall”: CJPP screened Mohammed Alatar’s acclaimed documentary film.
22 March: International guest Mr Jeff Halper: CJPP hosts Jeff Halper, Israeli peace activist and co-founder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) on the Sydney/Newcastle leg of his Australian tour. Jeff speaks at a number of universities, public lectures, radio interviews and CJPP functions.
5 April: CJPP Annual General Meeting
21 April: International guest Ms Olfat Mahmoud: CJPP hosts a dinner with the visiting director of the Women’s Humanitarian Organisation, a Palestinian women’s NGO working in Burj al-Barajneh refugee camp in Beirut, Lebanon.
2-3 May: May Day March: CJPP shows its solidarity by participating in annual May Day activities in both Newcastle and Sydney.
15 May: International guest Ms Haneen Zoabi M.K.: CJPP hosts the Australian tour of newly-elected Palestinian Member of the Israeli Knesset (Parliament), Ms Haneen Zoabi. Ms Zoabi delivers the annual Nakba Commemoration Lecture at NSW Parliament House, jointly hosted by the NSW Parliamentary Friends of Palestine and CJPP. Ms Zoabi also address a number of public meetings and CJPP functions.
11 June: CJPP Press Conference – Opinion Poll Research: CJPP held a press conference at the Waratah Room in NSW Parliament House where CJPP Convenor, Mr Peter Manning, to release the results of a Roy Morgan Opinion Poll commissioned by CJPP and Adelaide’s Australian Friends of Palestine Association. Mr Manning said, “All these results, put together, show that Australians are reading between the lines of the media bias against Palestine and Palestinians and they are not convinced by the Howard and Rudd government’s ‘Israel-right-or-wrong’ policies.” Learn more about this Poll Research here.
15 September: Film screening Frontiers of Dreams and Fears: CJPP hosts a fundraising event of this film which explores the lives of a group of Palestinian children growing up in refugee camps.
20 September: International guest Prof. Saree Makdisi: CJPP hosts visiting Professor Saree Makdisi during the Sydney leg of his Australian tour. Prof. Makdisi delivered the annual Edward Said Memorial Lecture at Adelaide University, then travelled to various cities in Australia.
9/14 November: Jerusalem Quartet Vigil: In line with the Palestinian call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions, including the cultural boycott advocated by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), CJPP initiated successful vigils outside the Sydney concerts of the Jerusalem Quartet where we distributed postcards to concert audiences to inform them about the issues. The Australian tour of the Jerusalem Quartet is supported financially by the Israeli government. Ask your conscience: Should Sydney play host to apartheid Israel’s Jerusalem Quartet?
23 November: CJPP’s Bethlehem Greeting Cards: CJPP made its popular Bethlehem Greeting Cards available again this year.
3 December: Protest Rally: CJPP participated in a rally protesting the Australian visit of Israeli Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom.
9 December: Forum with Marrickville Peace Group: CJPP member J.Killen was hosted by Marrickville Peace Group regarding her recent trip to the West Bank.
27 December: Gaza Freedom Vigil: The CJPP-initiated Gaza Freedom Vigil was Australia’s contribution to the world-wide campaign to end the siege of Gaza, which saw actions in Afghanistan, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Israel/Palestine, Jordan, the Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and elsewhere.
The Gaza Freedom Vigil was endorsed by the following organisations: Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition, Australian Palestinian Club, Australian Palestinian Professionals Association, Canterbury-Bankstown Peace Group, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Sydney, Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine, Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union (NSW), Gaza Defence Committee, General Union of Palestinian Workers, Jews Against the Occupation, Leichhardt Friends of Hebron, Maritime Union of Australia (Sydney Branch), Marrickville Peace Group, National Australian Lebanese Council, National Australian Arab Conference, Students for Palestine, Sydney Peace Foundation, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.