Archive - Apr 2008

April 30th



Give thanks for the growth of a nonviolence movement in Iraq. A federation of nonviolent groups has asked to meet with CPT Iraq to brainstorm ways to move from training to action.

Doug Pritchard
Christian Peacemaker Teams
Toronto, Canada

IRAQ: Christian Peacemaker Teams announces delegation to Kurdish region of Iraq, 31 July-14 August 2008.

Join CPT's first delegation to the Kurdish north of Iraq. Hear first-hand stories of a people subjected to decades of violence and oppression by the Western-backed regime of Saddam Hussein, international economic sanctions, and the U.S.-led invasion, occupation and betrayal.

April 29th

COLOMBIA LETTER: A week with the Southern Bolivar Federation of Farmer-Miners

Dear friends, family & acquaintances, fellow travelers,

I greet you with hopes that you are well and navigating your life with joy, courage, and freedom. I bring greetings also from CPT in Barrancabermeja and from [our coworkers]. Some greet you from prison, others from hiding; some while mining gold, others while planting maĂ­z; some while hosting a survivor; others from an urban refuge; some from court seeking justice, others while facing charges; some shout to you from the street, others serenade you from atop a mule on a mountain path.

They send their thanks, and I add mine, for your participation in a circle that sustains life and hope through direct accompaniment, listening, prayers, speaking truth to power, financial support, advocacy, and other forms of peacemaking.

While I was in Colombia, CPTer Stewart Vriesinga and I spent a week with the Southern Bolivar Federation of Farmer-Miners…

April 28th

AT-TUWANI: Israeli authorities enforce closed military zone for Palestinians, but not for settlers

On Thursday, 24 April 2008, Israeli military authorities declared the area north of route 317 (across from the village of At-Tuwani) a closed military zone. They began to enforce the closure from approximately 3:15 p.m., stopping Palestinian drivers coming from both directions but allowing over thirty Israeli settlers to violate the order.

April 26th

IRAQ LETTER: The most treasured flowers

I rest my hand to where my heart is and then raise it to the sky, saying, "Choni? Bashi? ( How are you? Good?)" With this gesture, I send my best and warm regards to you, my dear friends. This greeting is what the team in Northern Iraq-Kurdistan has been receiving everyday from the Kurdish people.

April 25th


Wednesday 5 March
An OpĂłn resident reported that Colombian Army soldiers had set up camp in their yard the night before, and had brought a list of alleged guerrilla collaborators. "I told them, `I've sold them eggs,'" said the resident. "'As long as they're willing to pay and I have it for sale I'll sell it.' What am I supposed to do when armed people come wanting to buy stuff? That doesn't make me a guerrilla collaborator. "



Monday 31 March
Barrancabermeja: Some eighty displaced residents of eastern Antioquia and southern Bolivar provinces, who had spent the last month encamped at a facility of the oil workers labor union (Union Sindical Obrera, USO), occupied Barranca´s public university campus, preventing classes from convening, to amplify their demands for conditions that would allow them to return home. Shantz and Stucky went to the university to accompany the displaced people as riot police came to the site. After negotiations with the university, the Dean allowed the displaced people to remain. The university, called Universidad de la Paz (Peace University), has had a long history of solidarity with social movements in the region. CPT Colombia accompanied on several occasions the refugees who came to Barrancabermeja to protest the militarization of their communities and the assassination of several members of their community by the military.

April 23rd



Pray for Ubencel Duque, Father Rafael Gallego, Teofilo Acuna, Amparo Gomes, Sair Chavez, and Martha Torres. These leaders of civil society movements in Barrancabermeja, Colombia, have all been threatened with death by a reactivated illegal paramilitary group.

Doug Pritchard
Christian Peacemaker Teams
Toronto, Canada

HEBRON UPDATE: 1–14 April 2008

Wednesday 2 April
…In the evening, Lingle, Friesen, Arbour and Rehm joined Rasheed for dinner at the boys’ orphanage. CPTers were presented with a certificate reading, “Thanks and Appreciation. The administration of the Islamic Charitable Society in Hebron, itsemployees, orphans and students are so pleased to extend their thanks, gratefulness and appreciation to all members of the Christian Peacemaker Teams for their tremendous efforts, solidarity and protest against the unjust Israeli military decision to confiscate all the properties of the Society. We highly appreciate your long staying with the orphans at their dorms.”


Monday 7 April
Arbour led a group of eleven Americans from Interfaith Peace Builders to At-Tuwani, and back to Hebron for a walk through the Old City. Near the Ibrahimi Mosque, a young Palestinian said that he had not been able to visit his father’s grave in the nearby cemetery since 2000, when soldiers beat him for doing so. A visitor asked if he would feel safer if the group accompanied him. He agreed, and Arbour led the group to the cemetery. He prayed at his father’s grave, and returned to the group with tears in his eyes.

April 22nd

COLOMBIA: Renewed Death Threats in South Bolivar; CPT urges greater response to Urgent Action

On Monday 21 April 2008, paramilitaries renewed their death threats against the leaders of organizations and organizations with which the team has worked closely for years … This time, the newly reiterated threat includes a list of specific people–some of whom are well known to CPT Colombia team members and have become dear friends of the team. After naming various people, the threat continues, "…we will start with you, and afterwards the others until there is not one left, plague of FARC sons of bitches, we will finish you off."

CPT urges supporters to take Urgent Action. 

April 21st

CHICAGO: Call for Expressions of Interest in and Nominations for Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) Chicago Office Coordinator

CPT has a full time opening for someone to provide office coordination and administrative support for the work that takes place in the Christian Peacemaker Team (CPT) Chicago office starting by September 2008. Responsibilities, necessary qualities, experiences and skills are listed in the following job description following. Compensation is a subsistence stipend based on need.