UK-PALESTINE MENTAL HEALTH NETWORK statement

UKPMHN Statement on the present crisis in Palestine


The UKPMHN stands in full solidarity with the Palestinian people in their ongoing
struggle for freedom, justice and equality. We hold the Israeli Government
responsible for the consequences of its aggressive provocations – the progressive
dispossession of Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrar, and the brutal invasions of Al
Aqsa Mosque – that have now precipitated the country into another terrible crisis.
We condemn all war crimes, and are dismayed at the failure of the ‘international
community’, including our own government, to insist upon an immediate end to the
killing and destruction.


The present emergency has to be understood as an intensification of the violence
that is endemic to the colonial project. Sheikh Jarrar is only a microcosm of the
settler colonial process that goes back to 1948. The viciousness of the right-wing
street mobs is of a piece with that of the ‘official’ war of attrition that continues,
unchallenged, against the people of Gaza.


Israel’s human rights abuses are systemic and well-documented: the equalising
narratives put out by most media outlets, and the weak and ill-informed statements
of most politicians, contribute nothing to the struggle for equal rights and racial
justice, the only secure basis for future peace.


While expressing our solidarity with all the people of Palestine, we are aware that
these shocking attacks directly impact colleagues that we in the Network are
particularly close to, in all parts of their dismembered country. The assaults on
Palestinians and the predictable failure of most of our political leaders to make an
adequate response in condemning Israel’s crimes, feels very personal to us.
Our task is clear. With the BDS campaign, we agree that ‘Israel can only sustain this
regime of oppression with international complicity.’ Ordinary people now have to
mobilise to ensure that assaults on the Palestinian people will henceforth have
significant consequences.


The UKPMHN will continue to challenge individuals and organisations in the world of
mental health to confront, and not collude with, the apartheid system and the colonial
project that is at the root of the ongoing crisis in Palestine.


Steering Group, UKPMHN
13 May 2021

Further comment:

a) From Dr Samah Jabr

https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20210512-in-the-battle-for-liberation-gaza-is-closer-to-jerusalem-than-ramallah-is/

b) From Prof. Haim Bresheeth

https://mondoweiss.net/2021/05/israels-illusion-of-normality-collapses-may-2021/

c) From Samidoun

d) Statement from the Israeli Committee Against Home Demolitions