Palestinian women assaulted by Israeli occupation forces are getting new media training

More than 40 battered women by the occupation from  Gaza are getting new media training

By Iqbal Tamimi

More than 40 women from all over The
Gaza Strip, and from different cultural backgrounds joined the project that has
been implemented by ‘ Wissal  Network’ ,
part of the Culture& Free Thought Association – Media Centre, funded by the
OSF, seeking to build their capacity and develop the tools and skills necessary
to be able to express their suffering and share their experiences with people
around the world, in an attempt to create a pressure group campaigning for
human rights, aiming at winning the 
local and international support for their campaign, and encourage the
international institutions to give effect to protecting women in conflict

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Among them some who lost their
husbands and fathers, others their homes were demolished by the Israeli
occupation and their agricultural land was razed. But they gathered to document
their suffering and share it with other people aiming to shame and expose the
Israeli occupation’s criminal acts they and their families have suffered over decades.

Following their first meeting,
they decided that the best tool to share their stories and painful experiences
is through new media. They decided to get training in groups so that they can
acquire different skills that can complement each other’s work. Some want to
become professional photographers; others wanted to get training as
broadcasters, while another group focussed on blogging.

Isra’a who joined the training in
broadcasting and production of radio shows said ’There are no Palestinian
family that has not lost loved ones or has not suffered directly and indirectly
from the Israeli occupation and its different means of aggression’.

20 years old Isra’a whose brother
was killed few years ago by the Israeli occupation forces added ‘Women and
young girls are the most affected. This project came to show the extent of
physical and psychological damage they suffered and its impact on them by the
occupation’s non-humanitarian practices.’

While 21 years old Wala’a Jumah,
has chosen photography to document the amount of suffering her peers endure. ‘joining
the project came from my firm belief that those who suffered and affected are the
best candidates for defending their cause and sharing with the world a different
point of view from those reflected by television channels’ she said.

Maha Alraei, the coordinator of
Wissal Network, believes The importance of the project is its ability to shed
some light on battered women by occupation, whether directly or indirectly, And
raise women’s awareness to a point that they become able to defend their own
cases, and to educate them about the international resolutions on protection of
women and girls at time of war, and encourage them to use creative tools and
make their stories known to defend their causes.

Mohammed al-Astal, Trained in the
use of social networking tools says, ‘Training women to use new media and other
online tools is a vibrant and exciting way that can pull them away from using boring
old routine of expressing themselves especially when such tools can highlight
the concerns of assaulted women by the occupation, to help them form pressure
groups by using new media tools which they can use to defend their cases
locally, regionally, and internationally, especially after witnessing the
significant impact new media has achieved through online networks during the
Arab spring.

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1 Comment

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