12 Jan 2009

Day 15 +16 Gaza Update

Day 15 and 16 should have been marked by two things – Our celebration of the hundreds of thousands of our supporters who braved arctic conditions and marched to the Israeli Embassy. The magnificent turn out on Saturday has shown us what we can achieve and also set us a bench mark of what we have to live up to in the future.

Days 15 and 16 should have been a day of celebration. We should have been rejoicing in the fact the Israeli Government had accepted the terms of the UN ceasefire and the overwhelming evidence of the deaths of hundreds of civilian men, women and children and halted their illegal military operation on Gaza.

Sadly that is not the case, and instead Israel’s Government spent yesterday dropping leaflets to tell the people of Gaza to expect an escalation in the military bombardment.

The Israeli army also started using a new weapon, the phosphorous bomb. They have been fired intensively on the Ghuza’a and Abasan villages east of Khan Younis.
Twenty five Gazans have been killed since midnight Sunday morning and at least 80 injured by this weapon that sets fire to the buildings and people they hit. Medical sources at Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis said most of the morning’s casualties were women and children. Medical staff appealed to international agencies for
We have asked a number of leading human rights lawyers to look at the atrocities the Israeli Government have so far committed to see if we can make a case against them at the Hague War Crimes Tribunal. It is our view that the escalation they are proposing makes each member of the Israeli Cabinet liable, under international law, to be served with indictments for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The demonstration

Yesterday’s demonstration was magnificent – And while the Met Police may stick to their risible estimation of just 12,000 on the demonstration, those that were there and those who are independent and witnessed the scale of it know that the people of the UK turned out in their hundreds of thousands.

The BBC has continued its outrageous misinformation about the protests, giving massive coverage on its website of Sunday’s pro Israeli rally with only a few notes on the Saturday march and rally of two hundred thousand.

Following last week’s demonstration when the main stream media failed to report accurately on the march, PSC, Stop the War and CND created a website that throughout Saturday put the latest images from the demonstration. You can see all the images at www.gazaprotest.org And if you have any images from yesterday you can upload them there too.

Write to you MP

In less than 24 hours over 400 of you wrote to your MP about Gaza through the special link we have created at the PSC website. If you haven’t yet completed the form it takes about a minute to fill in and could really make an impact when MP’s return tomorrow to see the level of opposition to the attacks on Gaza in their inbox.

Please follow this link and fill out the form http://www.palestinecampaign.org/Index7b.asp?m_id=1&l1_id=6&l2_id=57&Content_ID=346

The Next 7 Days.

The emphasis of our work will be changing over the next week. With no national demonstration we intend to shift our focus onto the political decision makers of the UK and the EU. We will be delivering a detailed briefing document for all members of the House of Commons tomorrow. The document will set out the scale of the human tragedy unfolding in. It will also set out how Israel is in breach of all international human rights legislation and is engaged in numerous acts of war crimes.

We shall then be shifting our focus onto the EU. There remains in place a trade agreement between the EU and Israel. That agreement is soon to be renegotiated and ratified again. We intend to run a major campaign to suspend the present agreement and halt any new agreements until Israel lives up to it’s legal humanitarian obligations and stops the carnage in Gaza.

What can you Do

Monday 12 January 4.00pm – 6.00pm Join the peace vigil for Gaza in Parliament Square
Tell PSC office of all events so they can be put on the website

Saturday 17th January
Build local protests and actions all over Britain. There will be a central London protest – details to be announced

To find out more about what you can do, please visit the following page on the PSC website http://www.palestinecampaign.org/Index7b.asp?m_id=1&l1_id=4&l2_id=25&Content_ID=392.

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