PR for British Friends of Neve Shalom~Wahat al-Salam April 2011


Come and support us at our “ruby celebratory” concert in London with The London Mozart Trio on Tuesday 21st June 2011, 7.30pm at the beautiful Hampstead Town Hall in London and our guest of honour Michael Morpurgo OBE author, poet and playwright.

Musical Programme featuring:
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart ……………. Piano Trio No 4 in E Major K542
Rachmaninoff ………………………………Trio élégiaque No. 1 in G minor
Bohuslav Martinů ……………………………Piano Trio No.2 in D minor
Post-concert reception (including best ticket) £60

Concert only ……………………………………… £30

All Profits going towards the educational facilities of the peace village,
including the mixed Palestinian Jewish kindergarten and primary school.

Tickets obtainable online using Pay Pal or your Credit or Debit Card:

Choose your ticket
Reception & Concert £60.00 Concert Only £30.00

Or from the British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam office. Pay by cheque, or debit and credit cards (Visa and Mastercard only). By POST British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam, Premier House, 112 Station Road, Edgware, Middx. HA8 7BJ

Or PHONE 020 8952 4717 A donation would be appreciated if you are unable to attend. E-MAIL:


Oasis of Peace UK

We support the educational programmes of the Primary School, School for Peace and Pluralistic Spiritual Centre of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam (Hebrew and Arabic for Oasis of Peace). It is the first place where Jewish and Palestinian citizens of Israel have made a determined choice to live, work and educate their children together in the spirit of equality, respect and understanding. Dedicated to promoting peace, the Village is known far and wide for its vital educational programmes and its example of shared co-existence.

The London Mozart Trio

This is the second time The London Mozart Trio has been prepared to donate their precious time and kind efforts for the benefit of the Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam. When the trio accepted their latest new member, Sagi Hartov who happened to be Jewish Israeli, engagement with the peace village became even more poignant. Sagi Hartov explains with enthusiasm: „The Trio believes in the idea of collaboration without borders and in the concept of helping to build peace through music. Through our performance we wish to contribute to the aspirations of the village of living together in harmony and to remember and celebrate the achievement of peace in this unique place.“ The Trio stands firmly established as one of the most versatile and exciting chamber ensembles to emerge in recent years, the London Mozart Trio (formed1989) has attracted considerable critical acclaim for its many committed performances and profound musicianship. They have released a number of CDs in the UK and overseas.

Michael Morpurgo (special guest)

We are delighted that Michael Morpurgo will join us for the evening. Author of The Kites are Flying, he recently visited the Village to meet children from the Primary School, where they made kites together. After his visit he said: The more schools there are like this [Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam] the more children can meet and talk when they are young the greater chances of reconciliation.

Post Concert Reception
After the concert, which will take place in the stunning grade ll listed Hampstead Town Hall, there will be a chance to meet the performers and guests and join us for wine, non alcoholic drinks and enticing Middle Eastern delicacies.

Hampstead Town Hall
213 Haverstock Hill, London NW3 4QP
Nearest Underground Stn: Belsize Park,
Buses: 168, C11, 268, 46

Children from the mixed Jewish and Palestinian school in NSWAS

Mozart Trio
Pictures free for use in relation to above event only.

This notice was issued through Daniel Zylbersztajn Journalism & PR on behalf of British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam, Premier House, 112 Station Road, Edgware, Middx HA8 7BJ, T. 020 8952 4717 E-Mail:, Website:, Charity No. 290062

Press Release / PR British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam

This was written as part pf apress release and used for   British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam in October 2010.  It had two follow ups explaining the importance of the event to editors.

Event: Outreach for Peace

Top Negotiation Leaders between Palestinians and Jews with 30 years experience, here in London

Ian Black, Middle East Editor of The Guardian,
in conversation with Dr. Nava Sonnenschein and Ahmad Hijazi
(Nava is Jewish and Ahmad Palestinian.  Both are Israeli citizens)

Monday 25th Oct, 2010, 6.30 p.m., Friends House, London (opposite Euston Station).

Nava and Ahmad will be talking about the renowned School for Peace (SfP),
noted throughout the world as a centre of excellence for conflict transformation.

Situated within a community which has defied every single conflict between
in the Middle East over more than 30 years, the SfP is creating peace
through its every-day work on the ground, and the never-ending thinking and
re-thinking on how to achieve this.

Nava and Ahmad will be telling their story, how they have been inspired to adopt
a life beyond the imagination of many, and the vital and important work at the
unique village of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam.

Tickets £15, available through British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam (Reg. UK Charity),
Premier House, 112  Station Rd, Edgware, HA8 7BJ, 020 8952 4717

Israel – Palestine – Middle East – Jews – Arabs – Palestinians – Conflict Resolution – Conflict Transformation – Neve Shalom –
Wahat al Salam – London Events – Peace – Community Cohesion



Meretz Director Meets African Hebrew Community Senior Member

This article was first published on the Meretz UK website.
Meretz UK Executive Director Daniel Zylbersztajn has met with Sar Elyakeem Ben Yehuda  one of the most senior members of the African Hebrew Israelites, who most prominently live in Dimona, Israel as well as in Jerusalem.

Mr Ben Yehuda has in January 2009 become the first member of the African Hebrew Israelites to be granted full Israeli Citizenship, which also extends to his children.  Ben Yehuda is currently in Great Britain and Europe to raise awareness about his community and change often false perceptions about it.

Ben Yehuda lived in Israel since 1971.  He is a worldly man of high intellect with a friendly approachable manner.  He said that the community had grown from its humble beginnings to count now 3000 members, not even counting supporters abroad.  He mentioned the various positive projects they were engaged in as a community to both defend Israel’s right to exist to amongst some prejudiced African communities, as well as to promote peace in the Middle East.  He said, “some believe we are a cult, but in the 40 years of being in Israel we have proven to be a positive part of Israeli life.” 

He was interested in how he and members of the African Hebrew Israelites in the UK could help to improve the image of Israel amongst the wider African communities in the United Kingdom.

He mentioned that the community had met with delegates of the Obama regime, as well as through a member who holds a ministerial governmental post in Ghana.  Further that Shimon Peres had recently addressed the community as a positive part of Israel. 

In the conversation Daniel Zylbersztajn conceded that whilst Kibbutzim were on the collapse nearly everywhere else in Israel, the African Hebrew Israelites are proving the Kibbutz idea well and alive in their own community and that also significant achievements were made in changing lives around for some people who have become their members.  Not only through work in deprived inner city communities in the West but also through worthy projects in the South.  He thanked Mr Ben Yehuda for seeking to meet with him and Meretz UK.

A public introductory talk on the African Hebrew Israelites at Meretz is planned for 2010.

The African Hebrew Israelites are a Jewish community of mostly African members (both diaspora and continental) who understand themselves as part of the Jewish People, both by calling, as well as by migratory routes in the past.  They study Torah and Jewish Law and live an environmentally aware, naturalist and ethical Jewish life-style.  For more information see

Meretz UK supports the rights of the African Hebrew Israelites to settle in Israel.  If some supposed birth right migrants to Israel become Neonazis (see then one can only endorse a group of people that feels so positive about living a Jewish life in Israel and wanting to be part of Israel.  

Meretz UK also rejects the idea and fact that the orthodox Ashkenazi and Spheradic rabbinical authorities in Israel, who have political power through representation in the Knesset, should have the sole right to define and decide who is a Jew and who not when it comes to Israeli citizenship. 

Press Release at Meretz UK Oct 2009

This press-release was first drafted by me and then issued after the input of two other members of the organisation (Meretz UK).  It was released on 17th October 2010

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Goldstone, Temple Mount, Obama, Refugees in Israel

A brief statement by Meretz UK including positional decisions from our Policy Committee October 2009

1. We recall our recent statement on the Goldstone Report even in the face of the UN Human Rights Committee.  Read Here 

2. We welcome the Nobel Peace Price for Barack Obama (Watch here).  Whilst we understand that it was based on intend and on vision, we nevertheless fully support Obama’s vision for Israel and Palestine and its immediate neighbours, as expressed in Cairo (Listen Here). Peace can not come only by Obama’s will and good intend.  We feel that it is now time for Benjamin Nethanyahu and Mahmood Abbas to cease putting obstacles in the way of peace, and that they adopt a different vision.  We hope for the later to be courageous and become recipients of a forthcoming Nobel Peace price. 

3. We are concerned about the developments in Jerusalem on the grounds of temple mount / dome of the rocks. Meretz UK believes that such tensions will not serve anyone.  We call on all concerned to be more contemplative, and put renewed efforts in inter-faith dialogue, an dialogue between Muslim Palestinians and Jews of Jerusalem. 
We further note that Meretz Israel Member of Knesset M.K. Nitzan Horowitz currently  opposes measures to deport children of refugees and economic migrants born in Israel and fully support him in his stance to enforce a humane voice on the issue of refugees in Israel.      

Press Release BF NSWAS 2009

Press Release by Daniel Z. for the British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al Salam
Information contained within let to publication on the matter in a leading national British newspaper. Hyper-Links and some contact details have been removed from this version


Fao: Education Editor / Writer

How to teach Palestine / Israel in your school and reduce conflict amongst teenagers in Britain at the same time?

The dilemma of the recent crisis in Gaza is well known to many schoolteachers across the country. Our media-literate children bring the big questions of international politics right into the classroom. Too often the response by teachers is a shoulder shrug, or referral of the matter to outside the classroom. This can even happen in subjects that otherwise touch on the matter, e.g. citizenship, R.E, geography.

But the search for answers should not be refused. “Children are too bright to allow their questions to be shelved or rebuffed!” says educational trainer Susan Denton-Brown, a former head of R.E, who leads a training course for teachers on behalf of the British Friends of Neve SHalom ~ Wahat al Salam (Oasis of Peace).

The British Friends (with the long name) represent a village that still surprises many by its mere existence, in spite of having been founded over 30 years’ ago. Wahat-al Salam – Neve Shalom, or WaSNS, is a village in which Palestinians and Jews have chosen to live together and establish institutions that demonstrate that choice. Whilst all in the village are citizens of Israel, their impact is felt far across the border, including Britain. The village of WaSNS houses, amongst others, a bilingual, bi-cultural and multi-faith kindergarten and primary school (where children are taught simultaneously in Arabic and Hebrew), a world renowned conflict transformation centre entitled appropriately the School for Peace, a hotel for guests of all backgrounds, and a pluralistic spiritual centre.

“The Gaza war at the beginning of this year represented a great challenge for all the villagers, and also the British Friends,” says UK director Benita Hide, but “we all have been there before, many times, and successfully persevered.” It is especially the commitment to dialogue that acknowledges differences, and an agreement on the shared benefits of peace that has ensured that the community is still a flourishing and growing Oasis of Peace. There are now over 50 families (Jews and Palestinians equally) living on a stretch of former no-man’s land that was once the border between Jordan and Israel up until 1967.

– MORE –


For teachers in the UK, the British Friends have developed a powerful teaching resource, Dealing with Conflict. Not only does it teach students about this remarkable village, but it gives a chronology of the Palestinian – Israeli conflict since 1919, in two columns; on one side the general Arab / Palestinian version, on the other the Jewish / Israeli. What’s more, there are over 50 activities inspired by the School for Peace, that are carefully integrated to meet different constituents of the citizenship curriculum. Dealing with Conflict not only aims to explain the conflict in the Middle East through games and thoughtful role play, but actually creates awareness of conflicts that may affect students own lives. Everything from identity, personal interests, the role of international organisations and the media, to personal peer pressure is explored.

The charity has given itself a heavy task. Susan Denton-Brown explains: “We are not happy with the mere distribution of the resource, but want to give teachers, and ultimately students, an insight into conflict transformation, and how to deal with conflict. This is why we decided, right from the start, that our resource should be accompanied with some basic training and reflection for the teachers who want to use the teaching pack.”

Dealing with Conflict is an invaluable tool for satisfying government demands for schools to teach community cohesion and mediation skills in their citizenship education programme. The authors have taken time to show how each bit of the pack matches the current needs of the national curriculum (key stages 3- 4).

Finally, there is something for students who strive to discuss and comprehend what they see on TV or read about on the internet regarding Palestine / Israel. The pack is well balanced and resourced and will make a real difference in classrooms across the country.

The next training day for Dealing with Conflict is scheduled for the 3rd of February 2009 at St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation and Peace in London.

For all questions, bookings or a pack contact

British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al Salam

020 8952 4717

– ENDS –

Notes to editor:

No embargo!

Contacts: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX information removed for privacy

Daniel Zylbersztajn, Press, PR & Education. Member of NUJ, XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Some extracts of Dealing with Conflict and other information can be viewed on (select education).
Training and Facilitation

Introduction to the Resources



The Editors

Further information

1. Who or what is Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al-Salam? Wahat-al Salam ~ Neve Shalom

2. 10 Minute Video about Wahat al-Salam ~ Neve Shalom

3. Binational / Bilingual Primary School of Wahat al-Salam

4. First Lessons In Peace
Inspirations of Peace

5. What is the School for Peace? School for Peace

6. Who are British Friends of Wahat al Salam ~ Neve Shalom (Oasis of Peace)?

Oasis of peace

7. General Press: Church Times, Radio Four Midweek (select 21st of May) , BBC World Wide TV (27th May) , BBC World Service (20th May and June 08 Persian Service), Radio Netherland, Daily Telegraph

8. Susan Denton Brown Article (opens pdf)