Palestine Forum Japan
The Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign & STOP MUJI Campaign in Kyobashi, Osaka, JAPAN
Responding to the call for the solidarity action against the Apartheid Wall, which is currently being built by the State of Israel, by the Palestinian grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, various solidarity actions were organised in Palestine and many areas of the world during the campaign week started from 9th November until 16th November.
As part of the solidarity action above, the members of the Palestine Forum and some interested citizens had a collective appeal in the station square of Kyobashi Station. In the action, we made an appeal to passersby on the current situation of Palestine under the occupation, and requested to the MUJI which was planning to open a branch in the State of Israel, holding aloft the banner on which the "Apartheid Wall" was painted. You can see a summary of the whole action through the following film.
First of all, we explained the MUJI's plan to open a branch in the State of Israel to the people passing by in the square, and asked them for signatures to call for halt to the MUJI's plan. Many passersby stopped their steps as they had heard the plan, and showed their interest in this issue. We managed to collect 32 signatures in a short time.
In this appeal, we presented a tabloid play in which an Israeli soldier harassed Palestinians in a checkpoint, in front of the banner above. Through the tabloid plan, we wanted as many people in Japan as possible to understand what was happening in the occupied Palestinian territories on a daily basis.
Specifically, we made the following two scenes in the play;
(1) an Israeli soldier does not allow Palestinian women who are heading to a hospital to pass a checkpoint without any reason, and pushes them back, and (2) an Israeli soldier detains a Palestinian man who made a protest to the soldier without any charges, and humiliates him with a blindhold.
We think that our tabloid play could draw attention to the passersby since they did not usually see real soldiers at everyday scenes in Japan (Of course, it is not possible to fully tell the reality of Palestine just through these plays).
After the appeal and signature collecting, we went to the MUJI Keihan Mall Branch in order to ask for a halt of the plan.
We explained the purport of the Stop MUJI Campaign, and passed the collected signatures, appealing to the staff members of the MUJI to have a rethink on the cancellation of the plan. The staff member corresponded to us showed understanding to our request to a certain extent, and made us a promise that he would tell it the head office of the MUJI. We are thankful to his polite response because of a dispute with us in the previous visit.
In some other place apart from Osaka, various campaigns to call for halt of the MUJI's plan to open a branch in the State of Israel are being planned, or have already set in. Connecting to these campaigns, we will continue our action to the MUJI for the immediate cancellation of the plan and its official announcement.
Palestine Forum Japan