Event Reports

Seeing Equals Understanding?

Perspectives on East Jerusalem

The office of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung in the Palestinian Territories received a group of KAS- scholarship holders and scholarship holders of the Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich Studienwerk (ELES) from Germany on the 2nd March 2016. Within the Study and Information program "Seeing equals Understanding" the group spend one day in East Jerusalem. The visit focused on the political, humanitarian and legal situation of the Palestinian population with particular regard to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

After a joint briefing on the current situation in the Palestinian Territories by the Resident Representative of the KAS Office in Ramallah, Marc Frings, and the Program Manager Fee Brinkmann the scholarship holders had the opportunity to participate in a political tour through the Old City of Jerusalem.

Afterwards the group went to the office of the Society of St. Yves in order to get an insight into the complex legal situation of the Palestinians in East Jerusalem. The partner of KAS Ramallah is a catholic human right organization, which declared to provide legal help and raise awareness of human and civil rights in the society. The advocate Zvi Avni and the Development Manager Fadi Khoury explained to the students the consisting problems of family unifications, child registration and the residency of the Palestinians living in East Jerusalem.

The subsequent stations of the program brought the group to the humanitarian organization of the United Nations (UN OCHA) and to the Dormition Abbey, where they exchanged opinions with Father Nikodemus about the challenges of the churches in the Holy Land. One of the highlights of the day was the visit of the Western Wall and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

During the dinner the UNRWA-director for external relations and communication, Matthias Burchard, and his colleague, Felix Neugebauer, invited the students to talk about Palestinian refugees. The scholarship holders were very interested - especially because of the current European refugee crisis – in the status and the integration of Palestinian refugees into Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories.

In a concluding reflection round the group could talk and share their experiences and their impressions of the day.

Study and Information Program
March 2, 2016
East Jerusalem, Palestinian Territories