CODEPINK Stages Series of Demonstrations Against AIPAC: Begins by “Occupying” AIPAC’s Office on March 1st

For Immediate Release

Where: In front of the AIPAC building (251 H St., NW Washington DC)  

When: 12:00pm,  Friday, 1 March 2013

To kick off a weekend of actions to protest the Israel lobby’s annual policy conference, CODEPINK and other human rights organizations will converge at the AIPAC headquarters in Washington, DC at noon on Friday, March 1st. Activists will “occupy” the AIPAC building by setting up a “settlement village” in front of the building’s main entrance. Visuals include “settlement homes” that protesters will wear, and they will arrange themselves symbolically to represent how much of an obstacle to peace real settlements in the West Bank are. Other activists will hold banners calling for new American policies in the Middle East that are not dictated by AIPAC.

AIPAC (the American Israel Public Affairs Committee) is holding its annual policy conference in DC next week, March 3-5, at a time when tensions are high in Israel/Palestine. Demonstrations have erupted all over the West Bank in response to the death of Arafat Jaradat, who died while in Israeli prison as a result of torture. Several other Palestinian prisoners are nearing death as they protest torture and abuse through organized hunger strikes.

Other upcoming actions throughout the weekend, March 2-5:

Full-day mobilization in front of Historical Society Building,
When: Sunday, March 3rd, 11:00am-8:00pm
Where: Corner of Massachusetts and 9th, outside the annual AIPAC Policy Conference; and in front of the Washington Convention Center

11am: Rally including debka (traditional Palestinian dancing), a flashmob, people dressed as settlements, and much more.

2pm: Press conference featuring Palestinian activists, co-founder of CODEPINK Medea Benjamin, former diplomat Colonel Ann Wright, members of the peace group Jewish Voice for Peace, and more. Rally will follow.

3pm: Choreographed action to honor the Palestinian political prisoners who are currently on hunger strike by dramatically posing outside the AIPAC conference. Protesters will assemble along the sidewalk, solemnly kneeling, facing the AIPAC conference during their break time between sessions when thousands of AIPACers will be milling around outside.

7pm: Protest as AIPAC’s conference day is ending

Protest of AIPAC’s Gala Event
Where: Between the Historical Society Building and the Washington Convention Center
When: Monday, March 4, 7-8:30pm
CODEPINK will talk to the hundreds of Congresspeople going into the gala to show their support for AIPAC. CODEPINK and allies will say no to AIPAC, yes to equality and freedom for Palestinians, yes to peace with Iran. It is time for a new US foreign policy in the Middle East.