Denounce Move to Expel Gandhi Peace Award Winner
Press Release: (Oct. 9, 2019)
For more information contact Stanley Heller, 202-573-7322
Promoting Enduring Peace (PEP) is reacting to news that the Interior Minister of Israel is seeking to get Palestinian Omar Barghouti expelled from his home in Acre. Barghouti is married to an Israeli Palestinian citizen and has lived in Acre peacefully for over 20 years. Interior Minister Aryieh Deri claims Barghouti is “a man who does everything to harm the country.” Barghouti has been targeted because he is one of the leaders of the BDS movement, calling for boycotts, divestment and sanctions of Israel to pressure it into respecting the rights of Palestinians and this has gotten the ire of Israel’s right-wing government.
Barghouti was given the Gandhi Peace Award by Promoting Enduring Peace in 2017 along with Ralph Nader. The award has been given since 1960 to laureates such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Martin Luther King, Dorothy Day, Cesar Chavez, Tom Goldtooth, Amy Goodman and Jackson Browne
Stanley Heller, Administrator of PEP, said, “We are appalled that harassment of Omar Barghouti is now reaching the stage where he might be expelled from his homeland. He was given the Gandhi Peace Award because we admire his call for peaceful measures to get Israel to abandon apartheid and respect human rights of all the people living within the land it controls. Far from seeking to harm Israelis, Barghouti is trying to get Israeli authorities to obey international human rights laws to take away the reasons for animosity towards Israelis.”
Barghouti has been harassed repeatedly by the Israeli government. He was denied permission to leave Israel to accompany his mother to a Jordanian hospital for cancer treatment. When she died, he was only allowed to go to her funeral after threat of court suit. In 2017 Israeli announced he was under investigation for tax fraud. That year Israel threatened to deny him permission to go to the United States to receive the Gandhi Peace Award only to reverse itself under pressure.
Promoting Enduring Peaceis a peace/environmental organization founded in New Haven, CT in 1952