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The 19th Israeli-Palestinian joint Memorial Day Ceremony - Vienna screening

screening vienna

Time & Location

12. Mai 2024, 18:00 cet

Spektakel Theater - Hamburgerstraße 14, 1050 Wien

About the event

Join us as we screen the 19th annual Joint Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Ceremony, hosted by Combatants for Peace and the Parents Circle–Families Forum.

Time line:

18:30 - Opening doors and assembly

19:30 - Screening of the Israeli-Palestinian Joint Memorial Day Ceremony

(approx 75 mins)

The screening will be followed by a facilitated discussionand and open conversation

(approx 1 hour)


Memorial Day is a sacred day in Israel. On this day Israelis honor and remember the soldiers

and civilians who lost their lives during military service or were victims of terror. It is one of the most solemn days on the Israeli calendar since it is not only a collective day of mourning but also for most, a personal day of remembering their loved ones. Official commemoration services are held in the presence of Israel’s political and military leaders and tend to perpetuate the narrative that there is no other choice except to live and die by the sword.

These events have become a powerful tool for shaping a collective narrative honoring the fallen for the “greater good” of the country. These ceremonies often justify the political status quo and provide a platform for patriotic nationalism and a one-sided narrative against a collective enemy.

The traditional commemorations ignore the fact that violence has taken the lives of thousands of both Israelis and Palestinians over the years, and that this violence is a choice made by human beings - and we can also choose to end it.

The Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Ceremony offers an alternative - a narrative of grief, hope

and transformation. By way of music, personal testimonies and speeches, our joint ceremony

commemorates all the victims of the conflict. It serves as a clear call to action to solve the

conflict in a just and peaceful way. When we recognize the pain and humanity of the “enemy”

then our pain, fear and hatred can turn to acceptance and solidarity. The ceremony has

become a call to change, and a symbol of hope that peace is possible for both peoples.

The Memorial Ceremony is transformational on both personal and political levels. For many who participate in the ceremony, the event marks a significant turning point in the way they perceive the conflict, as well as in their active involvement towards ending it. Although the inclusion of Palestinian voices, which are excluded in mainstream ceremonies, elicits major controversy in Israel, breaking these boundaries is a vital step towards achieving reconciliation and peace. In producing the ceremony, we invite others to see pain and loss not as "ours" or "theirs," but as shared by us all.

Combatants for Peace (CfP) is a grassroots movement of Israelis and Palestinians, working

together to end the occupation and bring peace, equality and freedom to our homeland.

Committed to joint nonviolence since our inception, we use civil resistance, education and other creative means of activism to transform systems of oppression and build a free and peaceful future from the ground up. Launched in 2006, we are one of the only movements worldwide that was founded by former fighters on both sides of an active conflict. As a result, we were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 and 2018.

The Parents Circle – Families Forum is a joint Israeli and Palestinian organization made up

of more than 600 bereaved Israeli and Palestinian families all of whom have lost a loved one to the conflict and have chosen a path of reconciliation rather than revenge. The Parents Circle operates educational and public awareness activities among Israelis and Palestinians using the power of our narratives to promote reconciliation.

Goals and Messages


To remove the barriers between Israeli and Palestinian societies by commemorating together

the victims of violence on both sides. To challenge the traditional narrative of victimhood and offer an alternative that denounces all forms of violence and provides hope for reconciliation and peace.


1 – There is a tremendous human cost to the conflict on both sides

This ceremony is a memorial event which recognizes the price that all of us have paid –

bereaved families and society as a whole – the human price of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In the ceremony we acknowledge the pain and grief; but refuse to allow this bereavement to be an excuse for revenge. We choose to build a different reality together, so that we will have no further bereavement. The Joint Ceremony calls on each side to recognize the other's pain and the price of war – in order to prevent the next round of violence.

2 – There is an alternative to violence

In recent years, both sides have witnessed an escalation in hatred and violence with no political leadership or diplomacy leading a process. In this vacuum, it is even more important for us to take responsibility and offer an alternative way to stop accepting the occupation as “normal” and living by the sword. Recognition of the pain on both sides and a joint call towards political action towards equality, peace and dignity for all people is more powerful than any military solution. Recognition of shared pain is part of building hope and a part of the reconciliation process that will lead to a sustainable and just peace between Israelis and Palestinians on the ground.


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