Wed Nov 21, 2012 7:35PM
Thousands of people have held fresh protests near the Israeli embassy in London to condemn the escalation of atrocities against the defenseless Palestinians in the already besieged Gaza Strip. The rally, called by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Stop the War Coalition, British Muslim Initiative, Palestinian Forum in Britain and CND, received a huge welcome. Participants gathered at the venue, waving placards and chanting slogans against the Israeli regime’s fresh atrocities in the Gaza Strip, where more than 1.7 million people are living in prison-like conditions under the crippling siege, yet they are heavily bombarded and shelled by the occupying regime of Israel. Sarah Colborne, Director of Palestine Solidarity Campaign said demonstrators wanted to show their opposition to the Foreign Office’s standpoint as far as Israel’s recent offensive against Gazans is concerned. “We are insisting that the British government uphold international law and human rights and tells Israel to end its war now. More than 140 Palestinians including women and children have been killed so far and almost 1,000 have been wounded. Israel’s war on Gaza has to stop”, she said. Protesters waved placards reading “End the criminal siege on Gaza”, “Free Palestine” and “Gaza - stop the massacre”. Manuel Hassassian, the Palestinian General Delegate to the UK, said “What is our crime? It is to want freedom and an end to the occupation, blockade and abuse of our human rights. When will Israel understand that we are people seeking our freedom and our self-determination?” Jeremy Corbyn MP said, “Where else would the EU tolerate the imprisonment of elected Parliamentarians? We need to see the end of the EU’s preferential trade agreement with Israel and we need to see an end to the arms trade with Israel. Yet the West are standing idly by whilst civilians are being bombed”. Jean Lambert MEP said, “This is nothing to do with security or peace and everything to do with the internal politics of Israel, with their election coming. We need an embargo or arms both going into and coming out of the area. We should invoke the human rights clause of the EU trade agreement with Israel and suspend their preferential status. We need a ceasefire, but this alone is not enough. We need real justice and the recognition of a Palestinian state at the United Nations”. Glyn Secker of Jews for Justice for Palestinians received huge applause when he spoke to the crowd . Anas Altikriti pointed out how the mass demonstrations against the last Israeli war on Gaza had forced the Zionist regime to end its air and ground invasion of Gaza, and that ‘four years on from Israel’s 2008 bombing of Gaza, we’ve made a huge difference.’ “Those who pretend this is a war between two equals are deluded or liars. This is a nuclear power using all its might against what is little more than a refugee camp. For the very first time we are seeing delegations from neighboring countries visiting Gaza to offer support. The line of visiting ministers is getting longer and longer, whilst those willing to support Israel are shrinking by the day”, he added. Similar rallies were held in Edinburgh, Yorkshire and different places across the UK to condemn the Zionist regime of Israel’s fresh invasion of the Gaza Strip. MOL/SZH/HE