The First of the Trees of Fidelity to Martyr Shireen Abu Akleh

APN| Beit Haninah - Jerusalem

21 May 2022


Our people in the occupied territories responded to the call of the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN) to partake in the activity of distributing and planting 1500 trees out of 4000 trees, such in honor of the martyred journalist Shireen Abu Akleh and all the martyrs, in Beit Haninah-occupied Jerusalem, in the morning of Saturday 21 May 2022, in cooperation with the Beit Haninah Municipality, and the Rural Renaissance Society.


The activity that came after the announcement of the campaign “Your tree protects them” emerged as an expression continued support for the steadfastness of the Palestinian people in the face of the Israeli machine of death. The campaign surpassed all expectations insofar as the energy and determination of the friends and members, both individuals and companies, who sponsored the trees from Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain. According to Mariam Al-Jaajaa, general manager of the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN), this is not the first time that our brethren and sisters in the Arab homeland and friends interact with our activities; given that the Million Tree Campaign launched by the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN) in 2001, succeeded in planting around 2.6 million trees in all the occupied Palestinian land, in an area of 131996 dunum, for the benefit of 30123 farmers, supporting 221327 dependents.


The sons and daughters of our homeland of all ages and from all governorates flocked to Beit Haninah, the first of the stations, planting trees with considerable media presence, and with the participation of Tony Abu Akleh the brother of Shireen, and with the special presence of parish priest of the Greek Melkite Catholic Archbishopric the father Abdullah Yulio, who came from the Ramallah governorate.


Concurrently with the planting event in Beit Haninah, Archbishop of Sebastia, Atallah Hanna, partook with the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN) team in Palestine in a symbolic planting of an olive tree as an honoring and tribute to the soul of the departed journalist Abu Akleh.


In the meantime, arrangements are being made to complete the sequential activities of the campaign “Your Tree Protects you” at locations including the West Bank (Jenin, Bethlehem), and Gaza (middle region, and Rafah), with the participation of the largest number of the sons and daughters of our people, and the local societies, farmers, and their families.


Concerning the choice of Beit Haninah as a launching pad for implementing the campaign Jaajaa emphasized that the spirit of the martyr underscored the unity of Palestinian land, adding that “Beit Haninah in occupied Jerusalem was the location where she was raised, but we wanted to complete what we had started at APN in terms of support of the resilience of the people of Palestine on their land, particularly since the apartheid wall divided the land into two, and expropriated more than 30% of the land to build four settlements, while continually pumping waste water from the settlements to the lands of the farmers and peasants.” Jaajaa also alluded to the hazard of the Israel barbed wire, which crawls and silently devours the land of the Jerusalemites in the area for purposes of establishing what is called the “National Jerusalem” park.