Direct from the refugee camps, The North America Nakba Tour, the Coalition for Peace with Justice and Promised Land Museum will present “The Exiled Palestinians, Stateless Palestinians from the Camps in Lebanon,” a talk featuring two women with a different message from Palestinians living within the occupied territories—theirs is the story of refugees displaced from their homeland.
The presentation will be held on October 23 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Forsyth County Central Library auditorium in downtown Winston-Salem.
Khawla Hammad has been a stateless refugee in Lebanon for 69 years. At the age of sixteen, she was expelled from her village of Kabri, in Palestine. Now she is 84 years old and still a refugee in Lebanon, with no citizenship in any country at all. Israel expelled most of the population in 1948, and has prevented them from returning to their homes after what Palestinians call al-Nakba (the Catastrophe). In repeated Israeli attacks in Lebanon, Khawla’s three children were killed, among many others.
Khawla will be joined by 23-year-old Palestinian refugee, journalist and translator Amena Elashkar, the great granddaughter of other Nakba survivors. She and her parents were born as stateless refugees in Lebanon and have never lived in their own country. Amena first met an Israeli during last year’s tour, and Khawla not since 1948. They have a different perspective from Palestinians in Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza and the part of Palestine that became Israel.
“We are pleased to give a voice to these misrepresented people,” says Promised Land Museum founder, Dr. Steven Feldman of Winston-Salem. “Our mission is to support peace and justice by fostering awareness of the common humanity of Christian, Muslim and Jewish families living in Israel and Palestine, so co-sponsoring this event along with the North American Nakba Tour fits nicely with our goals.” Promised Land Museum is based in Winston-Salem and provides Jewish and Israeli historical materials to inform people about the Palestinian experience through an exhibit that has travelled throughout the United States. Exhibit materials will also be presented, giving attendees of this event perspectives of both Palestinian and Jewish voices.