Australians for Palestine (AFP) and the Australia-Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN) are thrilled to announce the winner of the 2021 Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize as Aboriginal Gumbaynggirr intellectual, activist, academic, writer, storyteller and actor, Dr. Gary Foley.
The award will be presented at an online event on Tuesday, 30 November 2021.
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The Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize is an annual award recognising the inspirational and extraordinary contributions, and devoted efforts, of Australians seeking to aid Palestinians in their call for justice.
Dr. Gary Foley was awarded this year’s prize for his life-long commitment of solidarity to the Palestinian struggle for self-determination.
In the late 1970s, Dr. Foley worked with the former Palestinian Liberation Organisation’s representative for the Oceania region, Ali Kazak to establish a Black-Palestinian solidarity movement in Australia. They both saw the Palestinian and Aboriginal struggle as part of the same fight for justice against settler-colonial occupation. This led to Foley, Kazak and Melbourne university academic Suzannah Henty organising the historic first Black-Palestinian Solidarity Conference in Australia in November 2019 focused around Indigenous resistance against settler-colonial occupation in Australia and Palestine.
In his keynote address, Gary Foley stated:
“All Aboriginal people in Australia, like all Palestinian people, are impacted by the ongoing occupation of our homelands. The ongoing attempts to assimilate us, the ongoing and never-ending implications of settler colonialism that are not diminishing but getting stronger, impacts all people. When I see what is going on in occupied Palestine, it hurts me.”