Dates: 28 September – 5 October 2010
Location: Jerusalem, Haifa, Nazereth, Ramallah, Hebron and Bil’in
Over 7 days, a peace delegation led by Jody Williams, comprised of 10 women mostly from the US, travelled to Jerusalem, Ramallah, Hebron, Haifa and Nazareth, meeting with women peacebuilders, Israeli army representatives, members of the Knesset, lawyers, settlers, UN staff and community leaders.
They then attended the Women for Change conference in Ramallah where 300 grassroots Palestinian women activists came together to talk about women’s empowerment, true democracy, and peace. Women from the West Bank were joined, via videoconference, by women from Gaza.
Members of the delegation called for women’s organizations and civil society to be part of the on-going peace negotiations.
On her way to join the delegation, Nobel Laureate Mairead Maguire was detained by Israeli authorities at Ben Gurion airport. In 2010 she had participated in the Gaza-bound Freedom Flotilla as a passenger about the MV Rachel Corrie which was intercepted and illegally boarded by the Israeli military while attempting to deliver humanitarian supplies on June 5th. The other six ships in the Flotilla had been confronted in a raid on 31 May 2010. Violent clashes ensued. Nine Turkish activists were killed, and dozens of activists and IDF soldiers were injured.
In the end Mairead was banned from entering Israel/Palestine for 10 years.
The intention of the delegation was to bear witness to and learn from the struggles, creativity, and ingenuity of women activists in the region, in their efforts to promote justice and build sustainable peace. They wanted to connect with Israeli, Palestinian, and other peace activists to collaborate and exchange strategies for change.
A film about the 2010 delegation, Partners for Peace, narrated by Marisa Tomei, was released in February 2014.
Mairead Maquire (barred entry from the country)
Parents Circle-Families Forum
Mada al-Carmel: Arab Center for Applied Social Research
Adalah: The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel
Coalition of Women for Peace
Find out more
Israel refuses entry to NI Nobel Peace Prize Winner (28 September 2010)