Stop anti-BDS legislation in Senate and in Illinois legislature

The American Muslims for Palestine needs you to take action today to stop anti-BDS legislation in both the US Senate as well as in the Illinois House. Both measures, if successful, could have a hugely negative impact on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.

If you are an Illinois resident, please take action by sending a Witness Slip to the Illinois House Executive Committee voicing your opposition, and then go to the instructions for the Senate. If you do not live in Illinois, then please follow the Senate action alert. 

ILLINOIS

We must act now to stop this bill being pushed forward to punish companies that protest Israel’s human rights and international law violations. This bill is an attack on the growing strength of the movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions. 

Apologists for Israel's abuses are so desperate, they're even willing to politicize our pension system to stop the boycott. If the bill gets out of committee and passes, Illinois retirement systems will have to spend valuable resources to blacklist and withdraw investments from companies that choose not to do business with Israeli companies - including those based in the Occupied Palestinian territories - because of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians. 

US SENATE

As early as tomorrow, the US Senate may debate and vote on fast-track trade legislation, which includes an anti-BDS provision. This legislation would make it a “principal trade negotiating objective of the United States” to “discourage politically motivated actions” that “limit commercial relations” with Israel and Israeli businesses, including those operating in illegal Israeli colonies in Occupied Palestinian Territory. One target of this anti-BDS legislation is the European Union, which traditionally has taken strong measures against Israeli settlements. This new provision would pressure the EU into stepping back from its anti-settlement policies. 

Please take action by calling your senators to oppose the anti-BDS measures. 

AMP-Sacramento holding youth Nakba art & essay contests

flyerThe Sacramento chapter of American Muslims for Palestine is holding an art and essay contest in conjuntion with its annual Nakba and Palestine Day observance this year as a way to help youth connect with their heritage in Palestine. 

ART CONTEST

The contest is open to entries about Palestine. Some suggested ideas are a drawing or painting of masjid Al-Aqsa, a picture of a memory you have in Palestine, or drawing and coloring the map of Palestine. The AMP Art Contest is open to children and young adults ages 12 to 20. There will be a winner from the 12-15 age bracket and a winner from 16-20 age bracket. Digital entries are welcome. Any 2D medium is allowed, i.e, pencil, crayon, marker, paint. Entrants can use glitter, cotton, or other materials to enhance their artwork.

AMP will judge the entries and announce the winners at the AMP-MCF Jerusalem Day event on May 17, 2015. Drawings will be judged on overall impact, content, concept/originality, and quality.

There will be one winner and two runners up in each age bracket. Each will be awarded a prize. All drawings will be shown at the AMP-MCF event. Winning entrants’ names and ages will be announced.

Get the Guidelines and Rules. 

ESSAY CONTEST

The theme for this contest is Honoring the Blessed Land of Palestine. The AMP Essay Contest is open to essay entries that depict some aspect of a Palestinian village or city. Suggested ideas include writing an essay about the village or city you are from; an historic event in a particular town, such as the Deir Yassin massacre; depopulated villages; or a specific place in Palestine that is dear to you, i.e., Jerusalem.

The AMP Essay Contest is open to young adults ages 15 to 20. We are seeking essays 2-5 pages long, double-spaced. AMP will judge the entries and announce the winners at AMP-MCF Jerusalem Day on May 17, 2015. Essays will be judged on overall impact, content, concept/originality, and grammar. There will be one winner and two runners up. Each will be awarded a prize. The winning essays will be read at the AMP-MCF Jerusalem Day. Entrants’ names and ages will be announced.

Get the Guidelines and Rules. 

AMP demands safe haven for refugees in Syria's Yarmouk Camp

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(CHICAGO 04/06/2015) – The American Muslims for Palestine, a national education and advocacy organization, today expresses concern with the utmost urgency for the Palestinian and Syrian refugees who reside in the Yarmouk refugee camp near Damascus.

Over the weekend, human rights organizations reported the Syrian regime dropped barrel bombs on the civilian population, which also is impacted by the intense fighting between other armed groups, including ISIL.

“Credible information from public sources indicates that a variety of armed groups engaged in fierce fighting in areas where Yarmouk's 18,000 civilians, including some 3,500 children reside, placing them at extreme risk of death, serious injury, trauma and displacement,” said Chris Gunness, spokesman for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the body responsible for Palestinian refugees.

AMP takes Palestine to Capitol Hill

njVolunteers from several chapters of the American Muslims for Palestine participated in nearly 50 meetings on Capitol Hill on April 13 and 14, 2015.

In addition to meeting with the offices of their elected representatives and senators, AMP also met with the offices from the chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate Foreign Relations Committees.

Delegates discussed settlements and holding specific Israeli military units accountable for human rights violations against Palestinians. The meetings on Tuesday were scheduled in partnership with the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.

"This historic event brought Palestine to the halls of Congress. It's a first step in the direction of shaping policies that impact both Americans and Palestinians," said Osama Abuirshaid, AMP policy director.

"Members of Congress are telling us they don't hear from Palestinian Americans, and our first ever Palestine Advocacy Day is our attempt to rememdy that," said AMP Media Director Kristin Szremski, who coordinated the event from AMP's new Washington DC office.

White House must carry through its reassessment of US policies toward Israel

(WASHINGTON DC 03/39/2015) – The American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), a national education and advocacy organization, welcomes statements by President Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, who said on March 23 that Israel’s “occupation that has lasted for almost 50 years must end.” AMP is heartened by the rhetoric shift, but at the same time wants to see changes in US foreign policy that would hold Israel accountable for its violations of international and American laws and Palestinian human rights.

Empowerment Through Education and Action

The American Muslims for Palestine firmly believes that educating the American public is key to bringing about change in the Middle East. Because once Americans know what is truly happening on the ground in Palestine, they will no longer allow their tax dollars to be used to support Israel's military occupation of Palestine, the world's last and longest-lasting occupation. We are all empowered to act for justice when we know the truth.

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