July 8th: In response to the incursion in the Gaza Strip, many national and international organizations have condemned Israel’s violence. This release is intended to highlight some of the entities speaking out in support of the Palestinian people and in opposition to Israel’s unchecked aggression. Please visit the following sites to read more about the individual condemnations:
The European Union condemns the Gaza offensive:
The United Nations condemns the Gaza offensive:
The Swiss government condemns the Gaza offensive:
The National Lawyers Guild (US) condemns the Gaza offensive:
A group of 300 British Jews condemn the Gaza offensive:
In addition to the the above mentioned voices, a collection of 71 international and Palestinian social justice groups have co-signed a plea to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan asking the United Nations to take action to protect the residents of Gaza. The letter entitled, “Immediate International Protection for the Palestinian People in the Occupied Territory,” was addressed to the entire security council and called on the UN to take the following three actions:
1.) “Forming an international force to protect Palestinian lives against
violent attacks by the Israeli military.”
2.) “Calling for the immediate release of Palestinian prisoners held in violation of international law;.”
3.) Holding Israel accountable for its war crimes against the Palestinian people, its violations of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Right and the Convention Against Torture, and its blatant disregard for the principles enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Following the capture of an Israeli soldier near the Gaza Strip thirteen days ago, Israel has launched a major offensive in Gaza killing over 40 Palestinians and decimating the infrastructure. The air strikes have destroyed bridges, power facilities, structures within the Islamic University, the office of the Prime Minister, the Interior Ministry, and countless civilian targets. In tandem with the constant air strikes by the Israeli airforce, Israeli ground forces have led an invasion into the north and south of Gaza. During this time, the Israeli military has arrested over eight hundred Palestinians, including democratically elected members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, and Palestinian civilians living in Israel.
Since the incursion began, Israel has modified its public rationale and objective; Israel now states that the offensive has expanded its focus from freeing its captured soldier to eliminating “institutions of terrorism.” Despite Israel’s new claims, many analysts have explained that the attacks and arrests are aimed at destabilizing the newly elected Palestinian government. It is beyond an abridgement of international law for Israel to attempt to undermine, by force, the democratically elected government of Palestine. Israel must allow the Palestinian people political self-determination and must abide by their choice of an elected government.
The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) joins these voices and strongly opposes the ongoing Israeli violence in the Gaza Strip. ISM activists will continue to support the Palestinian people on the ground, and remain committed to opposing occupation, violence and oppression at the hands of the Israeli military.