Endorse the Gaza Freedom March - Sign the Pledge Today!

A year since the deadly Israeli attacks on Gaza in which 1,415 Palestinians were killed (including 318 children) and over 5,000 injured, no homes or schools have been rebuilt; most children have no textbooks or school supplies; the water and sewage systems have not been repaired; people are still dying for lack of medical care. How long must 1.5 million people wait before they can begin to reconstruct their lives?  The siege must end.  The borders must be opened. Governments have failed to act.  We must act instead. 

On 31 December, 2009, Irish civilians will be amongst the 1,000 international men and women who will end the year by marching alongside the Palestinian people of Gaza in a non-violent demonstration to demand that Israel end the illegal siege of Gaza.

Please endorse the Gaza Freedom March – sign the pledge:

Protest at Blanchardstown Shopping Centre - Wed 9th Dec 18:30

09/12/2009 - 18:30

Danbar Toys, an Israeli company selling remote control toys, are now trading in the Blanchardstown shopping Centre.  All products bear the '729' Israeli barcode.
I have been in touch with The Northside People newspaper about this and they have agreed to cover the story. They have asked that we organise a short demonstration out side the shopping centre in order to produce a good photo opportunity and a focal point for the story.
This protest is planned for 6.30-7pm on Wednesday 9th December at the Blue Entrance to the shopping centre (near the cimenas, theatre and Leasureplex). It will not be a loud or obtrusive gathering, but we hope that the impact of the media coverage will raise awareness of Israel's apartheid regime and the BDS campaign.
Please contact 0861260359 if you plan to attend and circulate notification of this demonstration to anyone you think would be interested in attending.

Minister Micheal Martin refused permission to visit Gaza


MINISTER FOR Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin has been refused permission to visit Gaza by the Israeli authorities, he told an Oireachtas committee.

Speaking at the Oireachtas Committee on European Affairs yesterday, Mr Martin said no substantive reason had been given for the refusal. Similar requests from other European countries had also been turned down.

“I just wanted to go in myself and see Gaza,” he said.

A spokesman for the Department of Foreign Affairs said the initial request to visit Gaza had been made last month. The department had been advised by the Israeli government last week that access was not possible

A spokesman for the Israeli embassy said Mr Martin was not being singled out, and he was “always welcome” to visit Israel. “It is not the appropriate time to visit Gaza because of the Hamas terrorist regime that controls it. This can pose a . . . security risk,” the spokesman added.

Committee chairman Bernard Durkan condemned the decision. “This is totally intolerable. That an Irish foreign minister is not permitted to visit a region to assess a humanitarian situation is almost without precedent and is tantamount to censorship,” Mr Durkan said.

[EVENT] Ireland to Gaza: Four Aid Teams To Set off for Gaza - Saturday 5th December

05/12/2009 - 19:00

After 6 months of fundraising, 4 teams from all across Ireland will leave their hometowns on Friday December 4th, to travel 4,000 miles to Gaza, to deliver Ambulances and Humanitarian aid to the stricken region. They will then leave Ireland (via Dublin Port) at 9pm on Saturday 5th December.

There will be a short 'send off' and photo opportunity taking place at 7pm in the Dublin Port Topaz Service Station (at the intersection of Bond Drive and Promenade St - map here:

A Sri Lankan solution?

The Jerusalem Post advises:

http://www.jpost. com/servlet/ Satellite? cid=125924305525 2&pagename=JPost% 2FJPArticle% 2FPrinter

The UN estimates that during the final months of fighting in Sri Lanka, at least 7,000 Tamil civilians were killed and 13,000 were wounded. But they also wiped out the scourge of terror, not stopping until total victory was declared last May. Today, Sri Lankans can once again walk the streets of their cities, visit the marketplaces and conduct business without the fear of being murdered in such gruesome ways that not even their loved ones can identify their bodies. It is a new dawn for Sri Lanka .

Israel and the EU disagree - is it the first time?

Issue of east Jerusalem sparks EU-Israel row

BRUSSELS — A row broke out between Israel and the European Union Tuesday over a draft EU proposal that east Jerusalem should become the capital of a future Palestinian state as part of a Middle East peace deal.

At the heart of the diplomatic spat is a suggestion by the Swedish EU president that EU nations should call for an "independent, democratic, contiguous and viable state of Palestine comprising the West Bank and Gaza and with East Jerusalem as its capital."

However it has already caused a storm in Israel where it was first aired in the Haaretz daily.

"The process being led by Sweden harms the European Union's ability to take part as a significant mediator in the political process between Israel and the Palestinians," the Israeli foreign ministry said in a statement.

"After the important steps taken by the government of Israel to enable the resumption of negotiations with the Palestinians, the European Union must now exert pressure on the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table. Steps like those being led by Sweden only contribute to the opposite effect."

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