Media delegation tours Silwan
August 8, 2010

A large media delegation from within the 1948 border visited Silwan today for a full briefing on the current political situation in the area. The delegation included Palestinian journalists, a number of Israeli journalists and, in addition, members of the foreign press. The visit commenced at the Wadi Hilweh Information Center with an overview for journalists on the current situation in Silwan, detailing the Israeli matrix of control over the area and process of Judaization underway in Jewish settlement schemes, spearheaded by Elad settlement organization. A tour was then conducted through the Wadi Hilweh and el-Bustan neighborhoods, where the group met with el-Bustan Popular Committee member Murad Abu Shafi. Shafi informed the delegation of the hardships facing the community and the atmosphere of discontent and resentment fostered by the Jerusalem municipality's racist policies enacted in East Jerusalem. Wadi Hilweh Information Center spokespeople then gave an in-depth presentation of the political and economic situation in the Baten el-Hawa neighborhood, speaking also about the seriousness of the security situation for Palestinian residents in the area. The visit was organized cooperatively by the Media Center in Nazareth and the Association for Civil Rights. A representative for the Association for Civil Rights gave a speech detailing the deteriorating circumstances of Palestinians in the whole of East Jerusalem, highlighting the extreme disparities between Palestinian East Jerusalem and Jewish West Jerusalem. The delegation then visited Sheikh Jarrah, meeting with families evicted from their homes by settler organizations and the three Jerusalem deputies of the Palestinian Legislative Council threatened with deportation.