In an advertisment posted in Haaretz on Friday 17th June 300 Israeli academics from around Israel have signed their name to a letter supporting actions taken by the Israeli womens group ‘Civil Disobediance’ that break Israel’s laws of entry by taking Palestinian women and children from Palestine to Israel for the day. The advertisment called on the Israeli public to support the Civil Disobediance group by actively collaborating with actions to take Palestinian women and children from the occupied territories to Israeli beaches for a day of recreation.
The Civil Disobediance group who called on public support in a similar advertisment next to the academics post have all been investigated by Jerusalem police and now have criminal records.
The groups activities were initially publisized last year by writer and translater Ilana Hammerman.
The academics statement read: ‘We, the undersigned women and men, state that we are willing to collaborate with the actions of the ‘Civil Disobedience’ women. In these dark hours, we are willing to drive their guests, Palestinian women and children, to hide them and to support their challenge in any other way, whether in deeds or in words. The action of these women shows the right way for any Israeli citizen who truly supports a democracy respectful of human rights. Should Israel’s legal system find it appropriate to prosecute and penalize these women we shall be willing to support them, to join them and to be tried alongside them’
The potential risk for Palestinian women crossing into Israel is high with harsh punishments for those who are caught. For many of the women it is the first time they had been in Israel.