Zajel Welcomes Group from Ireland
Palestine Solidarity Campaign to Nablus
7 May 2008
NABLUS, West Bank- Zajel Youth Exchange Program of the Public Relations
Department at An-Najah National University, hosted a group of 26
visitors from Ireland. The visitors are members of the Ireland
Palestine Solidarity Campaign, a member-funded and run
organization founded in 2001. The group includes Irish human
rights and community activists, academics and journalists. The
organization aims to provide a voice for Palestine in Ireland, and
is committed to a just and sustainable peace in the Middle East.
The group has made several trips to Nablus, and continues to show
their support for the community here.
Members of the group experienced, first hand, the effects of the occupation
on daily life, Their visit included a tour of both the Old and New
Campuses of the University, and lunch at the university dining
room. The guides explained the layout of the city from the views
overlooking Nablus from the New Campus, and they learned about the
routine difficulties imposed on students and faculty due to the
occupation. In addition, the group was told of the suffering of
the University Community over the few years, and the loss of life
among student body, faculty and staff.
The group toured the Old City. They saw examples of the destruction, as
well as learned about Nabulsi history and culture. Their tour
included: the Turkish Bath, the city’s oldest spice shop, as well
as a trip though the area’s long winding corridors of vendors.
One participant remarked that the Old City held much potential,
and could be a beautiful destination if it could be restored.
The visitors then went to the Community Development Center at Askar Refugee
Camp, where they were greeted by the Center Director, Amjad Rafai,
and some of the local children. Mr. Rafahi, discussed the living
situation within the camp, the history of its inhabitants, and the
mission of the Community Development Center. At the end of their
trip to Askar, the group was treated to a Dabka presentation by
the local children’s dance troupe.