International petition against the Gaza siege
While the Swedish ship Estelle
makes her slow way to Gaza, visiting numerous ports on the way and
being warmly welcomed, hundreds of parlamentarians, prominent civil
society actors and artists from different countries signed a petition
against the siege, due to be published in the European and American
media in a few days.
To add your signture write to organizer Mikael Lצfgren at:
Text of the petition:
summer, the intensified blockade of the Palestinian people of the Gaza
Strip has continued into its sixth year. The blockade—referred to as
`the siege` by its victims—is a violation of international law and of
the fundamental human rights of the civilian population in Gaza. The
blockade has devastating humanitarian consequences for more than 1.6
million people, most of them children, on this coastal strip between the
Mediterranean Sea and the Negev desert.
The blockade is
illegal, inhumane and—from Israel´s point of view—counterproductive; it
neither stops weapons from being smuggled into the Strip or missiles
from being fired, nor has it put Hamas out of power. On the contrary.
documentation of the blockade´s inhumanity and failure to generate
anything but violence and despair, is mounting. ”End the blockade on
Gaza now”, 50 humanitarian organizations and UN agencies urged in an
exceptionally frank statement in June. In addition, a UN report issued
in August concluded that Gaza won’t be livable by 2020 if urgent action
is not taken.
The blockade makes it impossible to properly
rebuild the hospitals, homes and water treatment plants that were all
destroyed in the massive bombing of Gaza in the winter of 2008/2009. The
export ban prevents Gaza’s residents from earning a living and is an
important factor behind the almost total dependency on aid. The “tunnel
economy”, which is one of the consequences of the blockade, nurtures
criminality and undermines any legitimate economy.
members who live in Gaza and the West Bank are denied the right to visit
each other. Young people are denied access to higher education at
Palestinian universities in Jerusalem and the West Bank. Fishermen are
forbidden to fish outside of three nautical miles from the coast.
history, the Mediterranean Sea has provided a link between people and
cultures. However, for the Palestinians in Gaza the sea constitutes a
wall, just like the ones that separate them from Israel, Egypt and other
parts of Palestine.
The blockade is a clear impediment to a
sustainable and just peace. However, it is evident that our politicians
have fallen short when it comes to adhering to declarations on human
rights and international law. It is now time for civil action.
action is what the Ship to Gaza/Freedom Flotilla is offering. The S/V
Estelle has been sailing since the beginning of the summer. Gaza is her
destination; ending the siege is her goal. We, the undersigned, express
our support for non-violent actions of solidarity like the Ship to
Gaza/Freedom Flotilla, an initiative in which some of us are
participating as passengers and others as committed sympathizers on
Our message is simple:
Palestinians are humans with human rights! End the siege! Let the people go!
News of Swedish Ship to Gaza
if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.