We quickly mobilize to stand together on Memorial Day

Dear Friends,Combatants for Peace logo

As you know, tonight is the Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony, during which Israelis and Palestinians stand together to remember the lost loved ones and speak in one voice to prevent further bereavement.

What you may not know is that the nearly 300 Palestinians who wished to participate in the Tel Aviv event have been denied entry by the Government of Israel to enter Israel. In response, the Parents Circle and Combatants for Peace have quickly organized a “sister” event in Beit Jala, the West Bank where many of the Palestinians will participate in the Ceremony from and watch the livestream of the event in Tel Aviv. Israelis have been invited in mass to join them in Beit Jala and many of our program alumni and friends will be headed to as I write to stand in solidarity and be together, permits or no permits.

Please join us in support of our Israeli and Palestinian members today, more than ever, who continue the struggle and in memory of all their lost loved ones.

If you cannot be at the U.S. based events today in NY, DC, Los Angeles, Boston, Fort Collins, or Oakland, please join us today on the livestream at 2:00 PM EST: http://cfpeace.org/projects/memorial-day/


In solidarity,

Shiri Ourian
Executive Director
American Friends of the Parents Circle

This is how we build peace in Israel and Palestine

Since January, the Parents Circle-Families Forum has held nearly 15 “Women to Women” Dialogue Meetings. These important meetings are led by bereaved Israeli and Palestinian women who share their stories of loss and offer their extraordinary choice of reconciliation as a message of inspiration and hope. In a safe space, women, perhaps for the first time, have the chance to meet someone from the “other side” and engage in dialogue. We had been unable to conduct these vital meetings in Palestine since the escalation of violence in October, 2015.

"Women to Women" Dialogue meeting in Tel Aviv, January 8th
“Women to Women” Dialogue meeting in Tel Aviv, January 8th

“All mothers have the same pain when they lose one of their own, and it doesn’t matter where they are from”
Palestinian mother at January 5th meeting in Beit Jala

“It is important to continue to conduct such meetings in order for more people to learn about the situation on the other side”
Israeli participant at January 15th meeting in Rishon Letzion

Israelis and Palestinians Launch Joint Projects

Israeli and Palestinian alumni of our Parallel Narrative Experience (PNE) groups have successfully launched several joint projects to fill crucial peacebuilding needs in Israeli and Palestinian communities, including:

  • Peace Conference – In February, over 150 Israelis and Palestinians attended a conference planned and organized by PNE alumni. This event was conducted to strengthen the attendees’ abilities to act as peacebuilders in their own communities.
Parents Circle members Bassam Aramin and Rami Elhanan address Peace Conference attendees
Parents Circle members Bassam Aramin and Rami Elhanan address Peace Conference attendees
  • “The Generations Club” – A club in Idna for Palestinian children. Led by volunteering Palestinian youth, this joint project provides positive and safe activities for the children, as well as developing responsible leadership among the youth. The project also includes a series of meetings between the club’s children and youth and Israeli youth and their families in order for them to get to know the other side and educate them for non-violence.
Adults circle from the Families Gathering of the Generations Club
Adults circle from the Families Gathering of the Generations Club


Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony April 30

“The Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony comes to remind us that war is not an act of fate but one of human choice.”

Dear Friends,

On April 30, 2017 cities around the world will be joining the 2017 Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony produced and led by Combatants for Peace, in partnership with the Parents Circle – Families Forum. Satellite events are being held across the world, to watch the ceremony from Tel Aviv, and to stand in solidarity with those who have paid the highest price in the conflict.



Would you like to participate or host a ceremony in your city? Here are the events being planned:

New York City

Join us for a event at the 14th Street Y at 6:30 PM EST to watch a recording of the 2017 Ceremony, hear from speakers and engage in discussion.

East Bay Area, CA

Local partners in the Bay Area will host an event on April 30th in the Oakland/Berkeley area. Attendees will have the opportunity to watch a recording of the 2017 Ceremony, and time will be given for small-group discussions.

Fort Collins, CO

J Street Fort Collins is hosting Who Knew?, a shared memorial celebration with Americans, Israelis, and Palestinians. Attendees will be able to watch the livestream of the ceremony, as well as view the documentary Disturbing the Peace.

Events are also being planned in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, CA, Tufts University (Medford, MA) and Chapman University (Orange, CA), as well as London, Berlin, Amsterdam, Zurich, Rio de Janeiro, and Johannesburg.

Email us to learn more about any of the satellite Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony events, or how you can host an event in your community!