Israeli, Palestinian Students Show Solidarity with Vigil
by Emily Siner
Supporters of both Israel and Palestine are uniting for the common goal of peace during a candlelight vigil Wednesday night on the University of Illinois’ Urbana campus.
The event, which is co-sponsored by several student organizations, including Students for Justice in Palestine and Israel Illini, comes in response to recent violence between Israel and Palestine.
Israel Illini Vice-President Elaad Applebaum said the vigil will show that people on both sides of the aisle can work together.
"We all support peace, regardless of which side we may or may not support or what beliefs we hold. We all want peace," Applebaum said. "It's not about politics; it';s about solidarity with the victims of violence on both sides."
The vigil could unite community members with conflicting perspectives and agendas, according to Tariq Shihadah, the president of Students for Justice in Palestine.
"The purpose of tonight's vigil is to bring together a diverse group of people, to understand the underlying humanity of both sides, and to honor the lives of those who were lost, and to realize how similar we are," Shihadah said.
The vigil begins at 8pm at Alma Mater Plaza on the corner of Green and Wright Streets in Urbana, and it will include readings of Palestinian and Israeli poems.
Event organizers ask participants not to bring any banners, signs or flags.