Sunday, 27 December 2009

Anniversary of the Gaza attacks

Today, on the anniversary of the attacks on Gaza beginning with the killing of hundreds in the first few hours, Jo, Rada and Ellie from Waltham Forest Palestine Solidarity Campaign are still stuck on the beach at Aqaba, Jordan, waiting with the Viva Palestina Convoy for Egypt to allow humanitarian aid through its borders into Gaza.

We need you, our supporters, to write to the UK Foreign Office and to the UK Egyptian Embassy, to lobby them to drop their conditions and allow the Viva Palestina Aid Convoy through to Gaza.

Why must the people of Gaza continually be punished for existing? Why must the humanitarian efforts of a few hundred international peace volunteers be sneered at by Egyptian officials?

In Aqaba today, we have been demonstrating as much as we can. 20 members of the convoy have gone on hunger strike today, with further people joining up in the coming days. We held a jolly demo on two boats, making an attempt to take Palestinian flags and Gaza support banners over the water to wave at Eilat, the deeply disturbing and flashing Israeli holiday resort on the Red Sea (why does Israel need so much "aid" when it has such huge income generation of its own?). There was a demo in town to mark the hunger strike beginning and this morning a group of convoy volunteers climbed a local mountain overlooking Aqaba and flew an enormous Palestinian flag and VP Convoy banners for all to see. This evening we have a rally at our basecamp compound and a candlelit vigil to honour all 1,400 killed in the attacks on Gaza last year.

We remain steadfast and determined to get our aid to the people of Gaza. We will not be stopped. There is no reason at all why the people of Gaza should be denied our voluntary humanitarian assistance. The families of Gaza are waiting for us to arrive: we get text messages from our friends there every day wishing us well and looking forward to our imminent appearance.

Please help us by contacting the Foreign Office today and reading the riot act to them, to get them off their Christmas backsides and into action to persuade Egypt that Egypt must allow humane behaviour towards the people of Palestine and particularly the people of Gaza. Why does Egypt feebly do the bidding of Apartheid Israel? Does Egypt have no backbone of its own, that it is too wimpy to be strong and caring to its fellow man?

We will wait in Aqaba, clogging up the streets with demos and bashing away on the keyboards of every internet cafe in town for hours at a time until we are allowed to take our aid to Gaza.


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