Finland and Palestine
This publication is the result of many years of interactions and debates between Finnish and Palestinian scholars, officials, dipl omats, religious figures, media and civil society representatives, culminating in a two-day workshop, jointly organized by PASSIA, the Fin¬nish Institute in the Middle East, and the Finnish Representative Office in November 2008. The seminar discussed the history and future of the Palestinian-Finnish relations as well as Palestinian internal politics and the prospects of the peace process. This publica-tion contains the papers presented at the workshop in 13 chapters.
This publication is the result of many years of interactions and debates between Finnish and Palestinian scholars, officials, diplomats, religious figures, media and civil society representatives, culminating in a two-day workshop, which was held on 22-23 November 2008 in Jericho. The workshop was organized and hosted jointly by PASSIA, the Finnish Institute in the Middle East, and the Finnish Representative Office in Ramallah – which was celebrating its 10th anniversary at the time. The seminar discussed the history and future of the Palestinian-Finnish relations as well as Palestinian internal politics and the prospects of the peace process.
Once Finland, a member of the European Union since 1995, held its first Presidency of the EU in the second half of 1999, the Middle East Peace Process figured very prominently on the EU agenda. Henceforth, it was deemed appropriate to establish and maintain closer ties to the Palestinian Authority and civil society in order to gain better insight into the development in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. The Finnish Representative Office was also accredited to handle relations towards Palestinian refugees through UNRWA. However, these missions could not have been concretized without the unremitting communication between the Finnish Representative Office and Palestinian NGOs, including PASSIA.
PASSIA’s relations with the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, thus, goes way back, since the establishment of the Representative Office in Ramallah ten years ago. Without a doubt, the professionalism and quality of interaction between the two have contributed to the documentation of Palestinian unfolding history in many of PASSIA’s publications, which helped enriching our library, and continuous to do so. Our work through bilateral meetings and during different international fora deepened our mutual relations and promoted dialogue between our two people.
During the joint workshop in November 2008, more than 50 participants – spanning UN, EU, Finnish and Palestinian institutions, among others – were joining analytical intellect and joyful meetings. The event brought together experts with a wide range of field specialization speaking on pertinent issues and contributing to this work.
Through this publication – containing the proceedings of the said workshop – we hope to share our fruitful debates and experiences on Finnish-Palestinian relations with the wider audience.
Dr. Mahdi Abdul Hadi
Chairman of PASSIA
Dr. Mikko Louhivuori
The Identification of the So-called Hisham’s Palace
Dr. Mikko Louhivuori
Palestine Research of Hilma Granquist: An Analysis of Academic Discrimination in Finland
Dr. Riina Isotalo
Palestine in Finnish Media - a Broadcast Reporter’s View
Development of Relations between the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland (Elcf) and the Protestant Churches in the Middle East
The Development of the EU’s Political Role in the Context of Palestinian-Israeli Relations
Dr. Flora Kurikkala
Reflections on Finnish-Palestinian Relations
Dr. Olli Ruohomäki
Visions of a Real Multiculturalism: Some Reflections on Palestinian “Vision Documents” in Light of Finnish Experiences
Dr. Hannu Juusola
Women’s Role in Building a Society – A Finnish Perspective on the Palestinian Developments
Dr. Sylvia Akar
The One-State, One-Society Option: The Only Solution to Restore Genuine Palestinian Rights
Fateh at the Crossroads: Opportunities and Possibilities
Dr. Luay Shabaneh
The Agenda of Hamas
Map 1: Finland in Europe
Map 2: Map of Finland Finland at a Glance Workshop Program
Finland at a Glance