Archive for the 'Gaza' Category

Gaza goes green: Hamas celebrates 29th anniversary

Photo Essay
Julie Webb-Pullman

Gaza goes green!

Gaza goes green!

Thousands of Gazans today braved the bitter cold in Gaza City to celebrate the 29th anniversary of the founding of Islamic resistance movement Hamas and reaffirm their commitment to their legitimate right to armed struggle against occupation.

Men thronged one side of the street

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and women the other,

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while kids found a place wherever they could.

Kids got the best view

Kids got the best view

Hamas leaders stood in a line beneath enormous posters of resistance fighters.

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Khalil al-Hayya gave an impassioned speech saying Gazans should enjoy freedom of movement, job opportunities, access to clean water and a constant electricity supply. Others also spoke,

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or listened.

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As Mahmoud Zahar said on Sunday, there will be no U-turns.

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“Resistance, no matter the means, is our legitimate right and we shall never ever give it up. Hamas will forever defend Occupied Jerusalem and the holy al-Aqsa Mosque against Israel’s Judaization schemes.”

Defending Jerusalem

Defending Jerusalem

“Our guns will be held to Israel’s head only.”

Kia kaha, Qassam

Kia kaha, Qassam

Statement of the PFLP on the 49th anniversary of its founding

PRESS STATEMENT
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine

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Today, we mark the 49th anniversary of the founding of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, founded on December 11, 1967 out of the impact of the defeat of June 5. The founding of the Front was an injection of a new hope out of the rubble of defeat, on an intellectual, political, and struggling level, to carry forward and raise the banner of the revolution, struggle, and national liberation movement against the Zionist project. On this path, tens of thousands of martyrs, prisoners, wounded, and strugglers, among the martyrs, the prisoners, and the wounded and strugglers of the Palestinian people, the Arab nation, and the international movements, have come forward. We salute them today with the highest regard and pride in them and their legendary sacrifices and heroism that have formed a historic and distinguished legacy and history of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Palestinian national movement overall. Read more »

WHO releases latest health access report for the occupied Palestinian territory

Press Release
WHO

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On the occasion of International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, marked by the UN since 1977[1], WHO launched a 2-year report on health access today at an event in Gaza to highlight how the Israeli permit system and physical barriers obstruct health access for Palestinian patients, ambulances and health workers. The study “Right to health: crossing barriers to access health in the occupied Palestinian territory, 2014 – 2015,” was based on data provided by Palestinian Authority ministries and non-profit health providers, as well as patient interviews and field studies.

“Access is a fundamental element of the right to health. Every mother and child has the right to be together during a child’s cancer treatment,” said Dr. Gerald Rockenschaub, the WHO head of the office in the West Bank and Gaza.

“Yet the data indicates substantial restrictions for thousands of patients and their companions who are trying to travel to their places of referral.” The 48-page report also presents information on the impact of attacks on health facilities, patients and health personnel, and the health access situation in “Area C” in the West Bank, where Israel retains full security and civil authority. Read more »

PFLP mourns and salutes Comrade Fidel Castro, a revolutionary inspiration for the world

PFLP
Press Release

Fidel Castro with George and Hilda Habash

Fidel Castro with George and Hilda Habash

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine extends its condolences to the Cuban people, the Palestinian people and the revolutionary movements of the world upon the loss of the former prime minister and president of Cuba and the historic international revolutionary leader, Comrade Fidel Castro Ruz, on Friday, November 25, 2016.

Castro’s internationalist revolutionary commitment to fighting imperialism and capitalism – manifest in the revolutionary victory against US imperialism and its puppet Batista regime in the 1959 Cuban revolution – consistently stood with the oppressed peoples of the world in their confrontation of imperialism, Zionism, racism and capitalism. Throughout his life, Fidel was a supporter and an example of revolutionary struggle in Latin America, in Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, El Salvador and throughout the continent. From Angola to South Africa, Palestine to Mozambique, Bolivia to El Salvador, Castro’s legacy of international revolutionary solidarity and struggle continues to serve as an example in practice that transcends borders toward revolution, democracy and socialism. Read more »

Hamas: Balfour declaration is void, criminal

Hamas
Press Release

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The Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas on Wednesday pledged to stay committed to the right of return and liberating all of Palestine.

“Our right to the land of Palestine is sacred and cannot be erased by a void promise from one criminal to another,” Hamas said in a press statement on the 99th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, confirming that the Movement will not give up a single inch of Palestinian lands.

Hamas asserted that the right of return remains an inalienable individual and collective Palestinian right that does not fall under statutes of limitations.

“We will not permit any attempt to tamper with Palestinian rights or give up the right of return,” the statement underlined, confirming that Hamas will never recognize the Israeli occupation or the accords that give legitimacy to its colonial land theft.

The Movement reaffirmed its position from resistance, including armed resistance, as the chosen path to deter the occupation and restore Palestinian rights.

Hamas stressed that Palestinian unity remains an essential necessity in the fight against Israel’s occupation, urging all Muslims to regard that the struggle to liberate Palestine as the top priority that unites all Muslims and ends the schisms dividing the Muslim Ummah.

Abbas, Hamas leadership meet in Doha

Hamas
Press Release

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Chairman of Hamas’s political bureau Khaled Meshaal and deputy chairman Ismail Haniya convened on Thursday evening with the Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas in a meeting in Doha hosted by Qatar’s foreign minister Mohamed Al Thani.

The meeting discussed the dangers threatening the Palestinian cause and national priorities during the current critical phase as well as ways to achieve reconciliation and end the Palestinian rift.

The need to implement the previous reconciliation agreements signed in Cairo, Doha and Gaza’s Beach refugee camp was underlined by Hamas leaders who also stress the importance of national partnership and urged for holding the elections and forming a unity government.

They also called for formulating a program to confront the Israeli colonial occupation and its transgressions as a united front.

Hamas also hailed Qatari efforts to support the Palestinian people and break the siege imposed on Gaza, and expressed appreciation for Qatari endeavors to achieve Palestinian reconciliation.

PFLP responds positively to initiative by Islamic Jihad for national unity

PFLP
Press Release

Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza City, October 2016

Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza City, October 2016

In response to the 10-point initiative presented by the General Secretary of the Islamic Jihad Movement, Ramadan Shallah, at the anniversary event of the movement, Comrade Kayed al-Ghoul, of the Political Bureau of the PFLP, said that the initiative intersects to a large degree with the positions of the Front and several initiatives brought forward.

Al-Ghoul expressed his support for the initiative of the Islamic Jihad Movement in an effort to rebuild Palestinian unity on the basis of a national liberation strategy suitable to the phase in which we live, emphasizing that the Palestinian people are engaged in a comprehensive conflict with the Zionist enemy at all levels and that there is a necessity for the full rehabilitation of all Palestinian national rights through cutting the path of Oslo and all related agreements, while supporting the steadfastness of the Palestinian masses.

He urged the movement to continue its efforts to follow up with all forces for a comprehensive national dialogue for this initiative.

Ramadan Shallah announced the 10-point initiative for an escape from the Palestinian predicament, which includes the following: Read more »

PFLP condemns occupation piracy of Women’s Boat to Gaza

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Press Release

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The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine expressed its strongest condemnation of the Zionist occupation forces for their attack on the Women’s Boat to Gaza, the Zaytouna, blocking it from reaching the Gaza Strip on a journey of solidarity and to break the siege of occupation.

The Front denounced this Zionist piracy, reaffirming the Zionist regime’s disregard for international conventions and treaties, relying instead on tyranny, terror and the support and protection provided by US imperialism and its allies in international forums.

The Front expressed its salutes and appreciation to the women on board the hijacked ship, saluting their determination to break the siege on the Gaza Strip despite the risk, noting that this mission enjoys the strong support of the Palestinian people and is yet more motivation to continue to work to expand international solidarity campaigns and boycott the Zionist state.

Israeli women betray their sisters, intercept Women’s Boat to Gaza

Julie Webb-Pullman

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Israeli women soldiers led the attack in international waters on the Women’s Boat to Gaza, Zaytouna-Oliva, on Wednesday evening Gaza time, and kidnapped the 13 international women on board.

The 13 freedom sailors included New Zealand Member of Parliament Marama Davidson, 1976 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mairead Maguire from Ireland, and retired US army colonel Ann Wright.

There has been no communication from the women since their capture, but the Israeli media reported the following statement from the Israeli occupation forces:

“In accordance with government directives and after exhausting all diplomatic channels, the Israeli Navy redirected the vessel in order to prevent breach of the lawful maritime blockade.”

Two hours ago the Israeli Times said the Zaytouna-Oliva was intercepted 65 kilometres from the Gaza Coast, and was now heading slowly toward Ashdod.

In the Interim Oslo Agreement, signed by Israel and the PLO, boats from Gaza are permitted to go twenty nautical miles (about thirty-seven kilometers) from the coastline, meaning the Zaytoun-Oliva was clearly still in international waters when it was pirated.

Prior to this latest breach of international law by Israel on the high seas, Israeli airstrikes and tank fire pounded the Gaza Strip, from a training ground in Khan Yunis in southern Gaza to naval police headquarters in Beit Lahiya in the north, and several Gaza City suburbs in between.

It is precisely this sort of wanton destruction and the humanitarian catastrophe of an illegal siege that the women’s boat was seeking to highlight, and break.

Women around the world are watching and waiting to see whether the women are safe.

Israel issues orders to intercept all-women Gaza-bound flotilla

Palestine Information Centre

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The Israeli occupation navy has received instructions to intercept women’s boat to Gaza and arrest onboard activists, Israeli daily Maariv reported Sunday.

The Israeli naval forces have received orders to intercept al-Zaytouna ship and arrest activists as soon as they reach Gaza shores. The boat is reportedly to be towed to the Ashdod Harbor wile female activists will be deported to their mother countries after they sign pledges to never return.

Zaytouna ship is expected to reach Gaza shores in the next three days following a stopover in the Greek Island of Crete to fix a sudden breakdown.

Amal and Zaytouna, a flotilla of two boats with all-women crews and passengers, set sail from Barcelona en route to besieged Gaza in another maritime attempt to break Israel’s illegitimate blockade on the Palestinian coastal enclave.

There are 11 women in each boat, including Malin Bjork, a European Parliament member, Marama Davideon, a New ZEaland member of Parliament, Mairead Maguire, the Nobel peace laureate from Northern Ireland, Fouzia Hassan, a doctor from Malaysia, and retired US army colonel Ann Wright.

The Gaza Strip is a place where around two million Palestinians have been locked up for nearly a decade in what many describe as the “world’s largest open air prison.”

Gaza’s political parties welcome the Women’s Boats to Gaza

Women leaders from three of Gaza’s leading political parties welcome the women in the Women’s Boats to Gaza arriving shortly in an attempt to break the Israeli siege of Gaza. Rajaa Al Halabi from Hamas, Mariam Abu Dagga from PFLP and Amal Hamad from Fatah ask women all over the world to continue to stand in solidarity with Palestinian women – and to send more boats.

They emphasise the tragic consequences of the now ten-year Israeli siege on Gaza’s women, and demand that international law be respected, and the siege lifted.

No online shopping for Nur

Young women in many countries can just pop down to the nearest shoe store to buy a pair of trainers, or if there isn’t one nearby, just go online, choose what they want, and have them delivered. Not in Gaza – Israel has completely banned postal delivery services to Gaza for anything except letters and postcards – and even those are lucky to arrive. Nur hopes the Women’s Boats to Gaza will have better luck.

Even asthma is under siege in Gaza

Nadal’s mother can’t get her asthma medication – because of the Gaza siege only 30% of essential medications are available in the hospitals, and asthma medication is one of them. She thanks the Women’s Boat to Gaza for drawing attention to the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

Women’s flotilla leaves Sicily – heading for Gaza

Kia Ora Gaza
Press Release

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New Zealand’s representative, Green MP Marama Davidson proudly displays the Tino Rangatiratanga flag on board the first of the Women’s Boats to Gaza as it leaves the port of Messina, Sicily and heads out across the Mediterranean for the distant shores of Gaza.

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Final farewells from some of the all-women crew of the Zaytouna-Olivia

Women’s Boat to Gaza statement, Messina, Sicily

This morning at 9:50 am, women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here.

When asked why they are going, the women gave a variety of responses. Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate from Ireland, notes that “they say that ‘silence is golden’, but regarding the plight of Palestinians in Gaza the silence of the world, especially concerning their little children, shows a lack of moral and ethical leadership from the international community. Why has it lasted so long?” Read more »

Sundus salutes the Women’s Boat to Gaza

Despite suffering a serious disease afflicting thousands of Palestinians in Gaza, Sundus salutes the bravery of the women in the Women’s Boat to Gaza.

Hamas welcomes EU court advisor’s recommendation to strike Movement from terror list

Hamas

Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh at Hamas anniversary parade in Gaza, December 2014 (Photo: Julie Webb-Pullman)

Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh at Hamas anniversary parade in Gaza, December 2014 (Photo: Julie Webb-Pullman)

Hamas has welcomed the recommendation filed by Eleanor Sharpston, the Advocate-General at the European Court of Justice, to strike the Movement from the EU’s so-called list of terrorist organizations.

In a press statement on Saturday, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri urged the European Union to follow the Advice of the Advocate-General, noting that the recommendation represents a historic opportunity for the EU to choose the correct position and atone for decades of siding with the Israeli occupation.

“Hamas has no enemies but the Israeli occupation,” Abu Zuhri asserted, adding that the Movement looks forward to having its name scraped off the European list of designated terrorist organizations.

“We seek positive ties with the everyone including in the West,” he underlined. Read more »

The world is a book

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page,” said St Augustine. But people in Gaza are lucky to read even one chapter, let alone see a library. This young women hopes at least one of the women in the Women’s Boat to Gaza brought a book to read on the way – and will leave it behind when they leave!

London’s calling but Alaa can’t answer

Alaa would love to improve her English studies in an English-speaking country before returning to share her advanced skills to help the students in her own country – but the Israeli siege of Gaza prevents her. Alaa deeply appreciates the efforts of the Women’s Boat to Gaza in trying to change this situation.

Raghad Salhiya welcomes the Women’s Boat to Gaza

Raghad Salhiya is a third-year pharmacy student in Gaza who was unable to take up a scholarship to study abroad despite having a Grade Point Average of 94%. Her aim was to return after having her education, to build her country’s future. She welcomes the women on the Women’s Boat to Gaza attempting to break the Israeli siege of Gaza.

Dreaming in Gaza

A young woman from Gaza speaks of her dreams, and asks people everywhere to stand with Palestinians in international solidarity.

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