The Freedom Bus, Jenin Refugee Camp, Occupied Palestine.
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Against all odds, the Freedom Bus will embark on ground-breaking West Bank ride
From 23 Sept-1 Oct 2012, The Freedom Bus, an initiative of the Freedom Theatre, will embark on a historic and ground-breaking solidarity ride through the West Bank. This project comes amidst widespread social unrest in the West Bank.
Inspired by the Freedom Rides of the Civil Rights era in the USA, the Freedom Bus promotes cultural resistance, and will use concerts, university seminars, Playback theatre performances, community visits, hip hop, and giant puppet shows to give voice to life under occupation. The Freedom Bus has been endorsed by well-known cultural and political figures like John Berger, Alice Walker, Maya Angelou, Judith Butler and Noam Chomsky.
The ride will embark despite challenges over the last year; including continual harassment from the Israeli army  following the assassination of the Freedom Theatre founder Juliano Mer Khamis in April 2011  and the ongoing imprisonment of co-founder Zakaria Zubeidi, without charge . However, the Palestinian actors, activists, photographers, musicians and bloggers taking part in the Freedom Ride are determined to spread their unique brand of cultural activism throughout the West Bank.
Judith Butler, author, philosopher and supporter of the ride said, “The Freedom Bus ride represents the aspirations of the Palestinian people to be freed from an illegal occupation, to exercise rights of self-determination, and to demand justice after decades of oppression. The Freedom Bus ride represents as well the freedom of movement and a movement for freedom.”
Details and background info:
- The Freedom Bus Ride: From 23 Sept-1 Oct Palestinians and international allies will take part in a 9-day solidarity ride through the West Bank. The ride will include concerts, community visits, university seminars and theatre performances about daily life under Israeli occupation.
- The Freedom Bus: uses interactive theatre and cultural activism to bear witness, raise awareness and build alliances throughout occupied Palestine and beyond .
- The Freedom Bus is coordinated by The Freedom Theatre: a Palestinian theatre and multi-media centre based in Jenin Refugee Camp. A range of other Palestinian community based organizations and associations are involved in Freedom Bus initiative. [Website: http://www.thefreedomtheatre.org/]
Notes to Editors:
 For reports on unrest in the West Bank, see: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-18695632
 An itinerary of the tour is available at: http://www.freedombus.ps/freedom-bus-itinerary/
 A full list of endorsements can be found here: http://www.freedombus.ps/endorsements/
 See Human Rights Watch statement: http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/07/27/israelpalestinian-authority-theater-group-hit-both-sides
News reports of Juliano Mer Khamis’s assassination can be found here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/apr/04/israeli-peace-activist-shot-dead
 Press releases about Zakaria Zubeidi’s death strike and imprisonment can be found here: http://www.thefreedomtheatre.org/news.php?id=279