The international Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network salutes our comrades in Gothenburg, Sweden on one year of organizing together as a collective for the liberation of Palestinian prisoners – and the liberation of Palestine. We urge all to visit the Samidoun Gothenburg website in Swedish and read the Swedish original statement: https://samidoun.net/sweden/ett-ar-av-fangsolidaritet/
One-year statement 24/1
One year ago, January 24 2018, a few us started the initiative Free Ahed Tamimi Gothenburg (Frihet åt Ahed Tamimi Göteborg). We created a Facebook page and called to protest to bring attention to the detention by the Israeli occupation of the then 16-year-old Palestinian girl Ahed tamimi. By then, the case had already received substantial attention around the world, but Swedish initiatives were glaringly absent. To us, it was an unmistakable opportunity to highlight that Ahed’s crime, like that of so many other Palestinians, was to defy Israel, an apartheid regime maintained by military occupation. A regime whose settler colonial violence is tied up in other imperialist projects such as Fortress Europe and numerous Western military adventures in the Middle East and North Africa in what are labeled wars on “terrorism” and “extremism”. A regime, whose ethnic cleansing, oppression and exploitation are motivated by false ethnonationalist claims of being the homeland of all Jewish people. A regime, whose allies are not to be found among those who combat racism, xenophobia and antisemitism, but among the antisemitic government of Hungary, the Nazi-dominated Ukraine and Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro, who is prepared to sacrifice the jungles of the Amazon rainforest for private economic interests. With her “slap that was heard around the world”, Ahed Tamimi demonstrated that it is possible to resist, and with her words inside and outside the prison walls Ahed has recalled the necessity for all of us who struggle for liberation and a just future to connect our struggles in every way we can.
Since our first protest early last year, we have organized a number of other activities: More protests of different kinds, alone and together with others; letter writing evenings for Ahed Tamimi and other Palestinian prisoners; movie screenings and talks to advance our knowledge on Palestine and widen our understanding of how the struggle for a free Palestine is connected to so many other struggles for justice and liberation. We have established many connections locally and internationally through our work. Among others with the international network Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network. After discovering many common standpoints, we decided with the release of Ahed and her mother Nariman Tamimi at the end of July 2018 to regroup as an autonomous local group of the network, Samidoun Gothenburg (Samidoun Göteborg).
Today, a year later, January 24 2019, we in Samidoun Gothenburg have just finished marking the international week of action for the freedom of the Palestinian prisoner and General Secretary of the PFLP, Ahmad Sa’adat. Together with many international groups and in many different ways, we have highlighted the question and always pointed to the connection between individual important Palestinian prisoners such as Ahed Tamimi and Ahmad Sa’adat on the one hand and all Palestinian prisoners, the Palestinian liberation struggle and all international struggles for peace, freedom and justice on the other. We hope, and believe, that our work has contributed to generating interest, attention, engagement and hopes for the solidarity work for all Palestinian prisoners and the Palestinian liberation struggle. In the near future, we support the work for a boycott of the Eurovision Song Contest in Israel as part of the international BDS campaign för an end to the occupation of Palestine, for an end to the apartheid regime and for the right of return for all Palestinian refugees. During February, we will also highlight the prominent Palestinian feminist and leftist parliamentarian Khalida Jarrar, who by the end February will have been held for 16 months of administrative detention as part of the Israeli attempts to suppress resistance by attacking resistance leaders. In both of these issues, we work with others and encourage others to contribute with even the smallest of means to the solidarity work with the Palestinian liberation struggle.
Finally, we continue to push important issues of imperialism and international solidarity with Palestine and Palestinian prisoners as the focus of our work. Our solidarity with Palestinian prisoners is simultaneously solidarity with the repeatedly punished, but persistently struggling, leadership of the Palestinian struggle for liberation as well as with the Palestinian masses who after 70 years of Israeli oppression and more than 100 years of international occupation and colonisation steadfastly persist in their defiant existence and creative resistance. We struggle with a radical conviction that the struggle for the liberation of Palestine is an indispensible struggle for all those around the world who struggle against oppression and exploitation and for peace, freedom and justice.
Free all Palestinian prisoners!