A Statement by Givat Haviva on the Fighting in Gaza

To all Friends of Givat Haviva and the Jewish-Arab Center for Peace at Givat Haviva.

In these difficult days when the guns are again roaring we are drawn, whether we like it or not, into the circle of blood and suffering which threatens to continue to harm many civilians on both sides of the battle.

Along with all residents and citizens of Israel, Jews and Arabs alike, we are apprehensive regarding the fate of the residents of the south – Israelis and Palestinians – and pray and hope for a speedy end to this terrible fighting.
Here at Givat Haviva we maintain, despite it all, the regular activity of the Jewish-Arab Center for Peace (despite how strange it sounds to talk about peace at the moment…) – and the activity of Givat Haviva in general.
Even while in the background the terrible thunder of the sounds of war  in the south is spreading, we continue to implement various programs for youth; the Arabic courses in the JACP continue; the Face to Face encounters between Jewish and Arab youth continue and the facilitators of the program are preparing the upcoming sessions; the staff of Children Teaching Children continue the activity in the schools; courses for women’s empowerment and Arab communal leadership continue their activity; exhibits in the Peace Gallery are mounted; the Shared Communities flagship program is moving on as scheduled.
In addition, we are making strenuous efforts to continue our contacts with our friends in Israel and around the world, and even with our Palestinian neighbors as far as possible.
 We are all hopeful that the parties involved in this war will find the appropriate way to move on to deliberations and agreements as soon as possible, in order to stop the injury to innocent civilians and enable safe and normal lives on both sides of the southern border. We know that only an agreement arising from understanding and mutual acceptance, based on a dialogue between responsible administrations, can advance us towards stability and peace in the entire region.
Givat Haviva turns to all of its friends and partners to join this call, in order that we can reach immediately a stage where the representatives of both sides can sit together and talk, and place the entire region on the road to understanding and peace.

Yaniv Sagee
Executive Director, Givat Haviva