Michael Riordon

the view from where I live

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Love in struggle

Meet Taiseer from Akka (in Israel) and Lana from Jenin (in the occupied West Bank).

This week human rights advocates launched a remarkable new website — loveunderapartheid.com — to share stories of Palestinians struggling to maintain love and family relationships despite the many walls and boundaries imposed by Israeli apartheid.

Israel’s systematic discrimination and segregation of Palestinians, laws impeding Palestinian marriages, and the splitting of families by the apartheid wall and checkpoints have made love a challenge at best, and sometimes even a crime.

By afternoon on the first day, tweets using #LoveUnderApartheid had caused the hashtag to trend worldwide, joining Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift in popularity on the social media website.  Imagine that.

You’ll meet a Palestinian citizen of Israel and a Palestinian from Gaza who struggle to plan an uncertain future; Samer, a native Jerusalemite, prevented from being with his mother during her last days battling cancer; Taiseer and Lana Khatib, who fight to keep their family together despite the blatantly discriminatory Israeli Citizenship Law.  And others….

The people who created the site welcome stories, the raison d’etre for this project.

I assume – hope – that as it grows, Love under Apartheid will embrace the love in struggle of same-sex partners, should any feel safe enough to share their stories.

For more information, contact loveunderapartheid@gmail.com.