The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
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December 2003 Meetings with NATFHE/CRE NABA held two highly successful meetings on 27 November 2003. The first was with the National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education (NATFHE). Issues discussed included the encouragement of British Arab activism within the union, fighting Anti-Arab racism, and solidarity with the peoples of Palestine and Iraq under occupation (the HQ of 'Stop the War Coalition' are located within the NATFHE NABA offered its help to any Arab lecturer suffering discrimination and any other lecturer facing pressure and harassment for taking a principled stance on Palestine. NATFHE particularly wants Arab lecturers to come forward and play an active role in the union, especially its dedicated minority section, and NABA would encourage Arabs to do this. It is important to thank organisations that take a positive stance on British Arab concerns, so NABA would urge all contacts to e-mail short messages of thanks to NATFHE, expressing gratitude for the meeting, for the unions commitment to take Anti-Arab racism seriously, and for its commitment to Palestine and Iraq. Email Kate Heasman, Equality Official NATFHE, firstname.lastname@example.org The second meeting was with the Commission for Racial Equality (CRE). This was a very forthright meeting, where NABA officials expressed the severe disappointment of the British Arab community at the lack of contact and of the absence of any serious commitment by the CRE to fighting Anti-Arabism. The CRE officials, Miss Baird and Mr Kanani, seemed genuinely apologetic, and promised to take the concerns of the Arab community more urgently in Topics discussed included; marginalisation of Arabs in UK politics (no Arabs in Parliament): socio-economic discrimination against Arabs: Anti-Arabism in the media and entertainment industry, e.g. the notorious racist film 'Rules of Engagement' was recently screened on TV, despite protests from the Arab and Muslim communities, but the CRE did nothing; the silence of the CRE on Anti-Arabism. The CRE has previously produced reports on racism against Irish people and Gypsy travellers, and NABA officials encouraged the CRE to produce such a report on Anti-Arabism in the UK. Further meetings are expected. Please contact the CRE at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org thanking them for the meeting, expressing the hope of the community for regular contact and consultation, and urging to seriously confront Anti-Arabism by producing a report exposing and condemning this most pernicious form of racism, especially in discrimination and hate speech by the media and film industry. It is vital that British Arabs do email the organisation, to underline how deep and widespread is the concern that up till now the CRE have ignored Anti-Arabism. Ismail Jalili Chair -- ---- N A B A The National Association of British Arabs Tel/Fax: ++44 (0)1780 765 655 Address: PO Box 77, Stamford PE9 2WQ, UK. Website: http://www.naba.org.uk EMAIL: naba@BritishArabs.com NABA is an independent British organisation working for the interests of the Arab community within Britain. It encourages a positive Arab contribution to British life and promotes integration without surrendering Arab identity. It works to build bridges with the indigenous population and other ethnic groups and promote positive media awareness of Arabs, their heritage and culture and their views. In addition it seeks to initiate better collective communications with local and central government and NGOs to address the difficulties faced by Arabs within Britain in respect of unemployment, racial discrimination, etc. Membership is open to all individuals and organisations interested in Arab culture and affairs. _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk