Freedom Flotilla Coalition to Sail to Gaza Again

fflogoResponding to the Israeli aggression and the complicity of world governments

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC) met in Istanbul in the shadow of the latest Israeli aggression on Gaza. We have watched atrocities being committed against an already besieged population. In the two day meeting (August 10th and 11th), the FFC concluded that it is the responsibility of civil society worldwide to sail to Gaza and challenge the Israeli blockade, the source of most problems facing the Palestinian population of Gaza.

We plan to sail to Gaza during 2014, the UN International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:
http://unispal.un.org/unispal.nsf/solidarity.htm?OpenForm

Following Israel’s Assault on Gaza, ‘Freedom Flotilla’ to Sail Against Siege

"It is the responsibility of civil society worldwide to sail to Gaza."

by Sarah Lazare, staff writer for Common Dreams

Following Israel's latest military assault on Gaza, civil society groups from around the world say they are moving forward with plans to break the blockade on this besieged strip by sailing a "freedom flotilla" into Gaza Port.

At a meeting in Istanbul, Turkey this week, the international Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC) and numerous other groups came to the conclusion that "it is the responsibility of civil society worldwide to sail to Gaza," according to a press statement. They committed to making the voyage during the year 2014, which has been coined by the United Nations as the "International Year of Solidarity With the Palestinian People.

While the group did not publicly disclose a launch location or date, they announced that they expect participation from civil society organizations across the globe — from Greece to South Africa to Jordan to Malaysia—as a gesture against "the complicity of world governments" in the blockade on Gaza.

"Calls to end the blockade of Gaza need to move from words to actions," said Ann Ighe, chairperson of Ship to Gaza and member of the FFC. "We invite all interested citizens worldwide to participate in this initiative in any way you can."

Israel's month-long military assault on Gaza, currently stalled by a tenuous ceasefire, has left at least 1,939 Palestinians dead, 9,886 wounded, over 200,000 displaced, and more than 10,000 Palestinian housing units destroyed or severely damaged. United Nations officialsestimate that at least three-fourths of Palestinians killed in Gaza are civilians and one third are children.

The freedom flotilla Gaza's Ark, which Palestinians planned to sail from the Gaza Port to break the siege, was one of the many civilian targets hit by Israeli air strikes in July. The shelling, which destroyed the boat, followed a previous attack that partially sunk the boat in April. David Heap, Canada-based spokesperson for Gaza's Ark, told Common Dreams that Palestinian organizers on the ground plan to continue the campaign "once they are able to concentrate on something other than surviving another day."

The 1.7 million people in Gaza — one of the most densely populated areas on earth—were already living under a U.S.-backed military and economic siege, which has escalated since 2007, cutting off residents from public goods including clean water and medical supplies.

"We are sailing against the sea blockade because there is no possibility of a peaceful future without freedom of movement for Palestinians," said Heap.

Previous attempts to sail against the siege have been met with violent attacks, including a 2010 Israeli assault on the Mavi Marmara ship sailing from Turkey that killed nine people and injured dozens, sparking global condemnation.

"We urge all governments to defend Human Rights and the right of the Palestinian people to freedom of movement, to facilitate the sailing of our ships to Gaza," said Ehab Lotayef of the FFC. "It is their responsibility."


[GA note: There were eight Turks and one American murdered on board the Mavi, and another Turkish passenger who died four years later]

 

 

New aid flotilla to sail for Gaza by year-end, say activists

FFC meet in Istanbul-2014By AFP | AFP – Tue, Aug 12, 2014

A coalition of activists said on Tuesday they would send a flotilla of ships to break Israel's siege of Gaza by the end of 2014, fours years after a similar campaign ended in a deadly raid by Israeli commandos.

"We plan to send the flotilla during 2014," the Freedom Flotilla Coalition, which includes activists from at least 10 countries, said in Istanbul.

The statement was made at a joint conference hosted by Turkish relief agency Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), which sponsored the first flotilla of ships carrying aid to Gaza that was raided by Israeli commandos in 2010.

Working Paper: Gaza Seaport, A Windowpane to the World

SeaPortGeneva-Gaza

Thousands of Palestinians are struck in miserable limbo unable to leave or easily enter the Gaza Strip, for study abroad, medical care, work or family visits for the past 7 years. Once again, siege and blockade are causing severe shortages of essential supplies from building materials to medicines in Gaza and generating a sense of despair.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navanethem Pillay, has repeatedly condemned Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip, calling it "a direct contravention of international human rights and humanitarian law”.

Media Advisory: The Freedom Flotilla Coalition to sail to Gaza again. Challenging the Israeli blockade

Forwarded from The Freedom Flotilla Coalition

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition has met in Istanbul, in the shadow of the latest Israeli aggression on Gaza. In the meeting of representatives from 12 countries which lasted for two days, August 10th and 11th, the FFC affirmed that, as most governments are complicit, the responsibility falls on civil society to challenge the Israeli blockade on Gaza.

The conclusion of our meeting will be presented at the press conference.

Israel-Gaza conflict: Turkish campaign group to challenge Gaza blockade by sending flotilla full of aid for Palestinians

Source: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/israelgaza-conflict-turkish-campaign-group-to-challenge-gaza-blockade-by-sending-flotilla-full-of-aid-for-palestinians-9661748.html

A pro-Palestinian campaign group in Turkey is to send aid on ships bound for Gaza, four years after its last attempt to break the Israeli blockade ended in a bloody raid and the deaths of 10 activists.

In a statement issued after a meeting in Istanbul at the weekend, the Humanitarian Relief Foundation group said it had formed a multi-national coalition designed to "challenge the Israeli blockade".

Gaza blockade must end

The UN should mandate an end to the siege of Gaza as a first step towards a settlement

Jimmy Carter and Mary Robinson
The Guardian, Tuesday 5 August 2014

Palestinians search for victims of an Israeli attack

‘There is no humane or legal justification for how the Israeli Defence Force is conducting this war, pulverising with bombs, missiles and artillery large parts of Gaza, including thousands of homes, schools and hospitals.’ Photograph: UPI /Landov / Barcroft Media

Israelis and Palestinians are still burying loved ones killed during Gaza’s third war in six years. Since 8 July, more than 1,800 Palestinian and 65 Israeli lives have been sacrificed. Many in the world are heart-broken in the powerless certainty that and despite the latest ceasefire, it seems that more willcould die yet; that more are being killed every hour.This tragedy results from the deliberate obstruction of a promising move towards peace, when a reconciliation agreement among the Palestinian factions was announced in April.

Ending Gaza Blockade Must Top Agenda of Cairo Talks

logo for mailing to list      Negotiators are meeting in Cairo during the 72-hour Gaza ceasefire, trying to make an agreement for a lasting ceasefire. Palestinians are demanding that a long-term ceasefire permanently end the Israeli-Egyptian economic blockade on 1.8 million Palestinians in Gaza. This is a crucial moment for opponents of the blockade around the world to raise our voices.  

Starting at 12 noon eastern US time (11 AM Central, 9 AM Pacific, 6pm CET), we urge you to participate in our daily 15 minute Twitter storm to push for the Cairo talks to conclude with an agreement to end the blockade of Gaza. Go to this page for instructions and sample tweets:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/end-gaza-blockade-in-cairo

Even if you can’t join the Twitter storm at 12pm ET – maybe you it will be 2AM where you are! – we urge you to post tweets on ending the Gaza blockade with the hashtag #EndGazaBlockadeInCairo whenever you can, in whatever languages you can. We want to raise the profile of the Cairo talks, so that everyone in the world who opposes the blockade understands that the fate of the blockade is being negotiated right now, and does what they can to push political leaders to use their influence to insure that ending the blockade is part of the Cairo agreement.

Even U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has conceded, “Palestinians can’t have a cease-fire in which they think the status quo is going to stay." Scott Anderson, deputy director of the U.N. Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), recently said: “Unless there is material change to the status quo, you’re just resetting the clock for another cycle of violence.”
 

That’s why, together with our partners in the Freedom Flotilla Coalition, we are organizing a daily, 15 minute Twitter storm at 12 noon ET until the Cairo talks conclude with an agreement that ends the blockade. We want to make sure that “end the blockade” is at the top of the international agenda for the talks.
 

Participate in our daily twitter storm at noon ET every day until the Cairo talks conclude with an agreement to end the blockade. Instructions and sample tweets are here:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/end-gaza-blockade-in-cairo

Even if you don't use Twitter, you can help by spreading this message by e-mail and by sharing the link above on other media with users who can support these efforts.Thank you for all you do to push for freedom of commerce and movement for Palestinians in Gaza,

In continued solidarity,
Gaza's Ark Steering Committee

Elected representatives don’t represent us on Palestine

Canada's NDP (New Democratic Party) is lagging behind even the U.S. Democratic Party

August 4th, 2014
Featured Guest: DAVID HEAP



Description:


David Heap can't hear the incessant pleas for NDP fundraising over the screaming of Gaza's children.

Urgent Action alert: Rescue team delivering urgent humanitarian aid to Rafah at risk

4th August 2014

 

Urgent Action alert: Rescue team delivering urgent humanitarian aid to Rafah at risk

 

Call your representatives and the foreign offices of the UK, Sweden, and the USA to inform them that citizens of these countries are travelling to Rafah to deliver aid. Demand that Israel cease targeting medical personnel rescue teams and civilians, and immediately provides an evacuation route to transfer humanitarian aid to Rafah and to evacuate patients to other hospitals in Gaza for treatment.

Some contact information is provided below.