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Cablegate: Monitoring and Evaluating Prm-Funded Activities At

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 AMMAN 001477

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR PRM AND NEA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREF PREL KPAL KWBG IS JO
SUBJECT: MONITORING AND EVALUATING PRM-FUNDED ACTIVITIES AT
SEEDS OF PEACE'S COEXISTENCE CENTER IN JERUSALEM

REF: A)02 STATE 148171
B)02 AMMAN 05823

1. SUMMARY: REGIONAL REFCOORD ASSISTANT MET WITH SEEDS OF
PEACE'S COEXISTENCE CENTER OFFICIALS JANUARY 27 TO MONITOR
PRM-FUNDED ACTIVITIES AT THE JERUSALEM CENTER FOR
COEXISTENCE. ALTHOUGH POLITICAL AND SECURITY CONDITIONS
CONTINUE TO IMPEDE DIRECT CONTACT BETWEEN ISRAELI AND
PALESTINIAN SEEDS, SOP HAS MANAGED TO CONDUCT CREATIVE
COEXISTENCE PROGRAMMING. SOP STAFF MET PALESTINIAN SEEDS IN
THEIR TOWNS, HELD A SEMINAR AND A COMMUNITY SERVICE PROJECT
IN JERICHO FOR PALESTINIAN SEEDS, HELD MEETINGS FOR PARENTS
OF THE ISRAELI AND PALESTINIAN SEEDS IN ISRAEL AS WELL AS
COEXISTENCE MEETINGS FOR ISRAELI AND PALESTINIAN RESIDENTS
OF JERUSALEM, AND MAINTAINED A SOP WEBSITE AND MAGAZINE IN
ORDER TO MAINTAIN LINKS BETWEEN THE TWO COMMUNITIES. END
SUMMARY.

2. Regional RefCoord Assistant met with Seeds of Peace's
Coexistence Center Program Director Ned Lazarus and Senior
Program Officer Jen Marlowe January 27 to monitor PRM-funded
activities at the Jerusalem Center for Coexistence. Because
the political and the security situation on the ground has
not changed since our last report (ref b), Seeds of Peace
continues to face difficulties in bringing together Israeli
and Palestinian Seeds for coexistence activities.
Nevertheless, Seeds of Peace maintained communication links
between Israeli and Palestinian youth through chatting on
the Seeds of Peace (SOP) website and writing to the SOP bi-
annual Olive Branch magazine. Through these activities,
Palestinian and Israeli Seeds also develop their writing
skills and learn international perspectives on other
relevant issues through virtual contact with Seeds from 23
different countries.

3. In spite of travel restrictions in the West Bank and
Gaza, 90 of the 116 Seeds who participated in the SOP summer
camp 2002 managed to meet regularly in different locations.
Israeli and Palestinian residents of Jerusalem held their
meetings at the Seeds Center in Jerusalem, while Arab and
Jewish Israelis met in northern and southern Israel. Since
Palestinian participants from the West Bank and Gaza could
not move out of their towns, Lazarus and Marlowe conducted
regional check-in meetings with the Seeds in their towns --
Ramallah, Beit Jala, Abu Dis, Nablus and Gaza -- to share
what they have been facing in recent months, how they have
met the challenges they confront, what discourages and
inspires them, and how to stay connected to the other Seeds,
to the organization and to each other.

4. Marlowe and Lazarus reported that social pressures have
made it difficult for some Palestinian Seeds to continue
their coexistence activities. Those in Gaza were not able
to talk with the Palestinian community at all about their
activities in the SOP, while others in Ramallah and Nablus
were less restricted. Nevertheless, Palestinians showed
commitment to the program, attending town hall meetings and
expressing their willingness to continue working with the
values and culture of Seeds of Peace. Lazarus said that the
SOP values become part of the Seeds' identity.

5. In order to compensate for the difficult circumstances,
Seeds of Peace also went beyond its traditional approach of
meetings between the Seeds themselves by holding unilateral
and joint Israeli-Palestinian meetings for the Seeds parents
and families. Seeds held joint Hanukah and Ramadan
celebrations, gathering 150 Seeds and their families for an
evening of `oud music and food, forging trusting connections
between the parents. Seeds of Peace also held a seminar on
community activism in Jericho, where Palestinian Seeds heard
from panels of their peers and professionals about
meaningful ways to contribute to their community that are
consistent with the values of Seeds of Peace. The seminar
was followed by a voluntary project at a school in the Ein
el-Sultan refugee camp, where the Seeds painted a new UNRWA
school building. 60 Seeds from Gaza and the West Bank as
well Palestinians studying in Jordan participated in that
event.

6. According to Lazarus and Marlowe, Seeds of Peace intends
to apply for another PRM grant to send 10 refugee children
to its 2003 summer camp in Maine. Seeds would like to give
priority to refugees from the Palestinian camps in the West
Bank and Gaza, but continued travel restrictions could make
this difficult. SOP management is therefore considering
expanding its program to Palestinian residents of refugee
camps in Jordan.
7. ConGen Jerusalem cleared this cable.

GNEHM

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