BDS: Upholding our Rights, Resisting the Ongoing Nakba

The BNC Commemorates the 69th Anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba

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In trade fair that is taking place in Tulkarem city, Palestinian citizens and traders gathered in the refugee camp to buy and sell Palestinian products in a statement of boycott and resistance to the Israeli occupation. Goods produced in the camp itself were on sale, including carob energy drinks, children's clothes and packaged cakes. Local people browsed the stalls while children from the camp entertained onlookers with drumming and dancing.

For more information on the cultural boycott: [url=http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=309_0_1_0_C ]Greece pulls out of Israeli Film Festival[/url] [url=http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=287_0_1_0_C ]Locarno Film Festival drops Israeli Government Sponsorship[/url] STATEMENT BY KEN LOACH

The statement calls for an end to the war, and an end to the root of the problem in the Middle East which is the continued military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, that has lasted for almost 40 years.

With Israel’s invasion of Gaza on June 27th, 2006, ministries and educational institutions have been destroyed, as has the plant that supplies nearly 50 percent of Gaza‘s electricity. Bridges, roads, dozens of homes, and hundreds of dunams of agricultural land have also been destroyed. Sixty-four elected Palestinian legislators, cabinet ministers and officials have been detained without charge.

Lebanon and Palestine have been enduring Israeli policies of extermination and vandalism for decades. UTA equally condemns the international conspiracy of silence and Arab impotence in the face of the continuous Israeli-American crimes. The Qana massacre was committed on the arrival of the terrorist US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's second visit to Israel in four days so that she could witness first-hand the heinous Israeli crimes committed by American smart bombs, F16s and Apache helicopters.

For us, women of Palestine, we shall never give up our national right to self determination and independence, and we shall never relinquish our right to resist the cruel and criminal policies of the Israeli state against our people in Palestine and Lebanon. Towards that end, we call upon international civil society to shoulder its moral responsibilities and join the growing movement to isolate apartheid Israel through a comprehensive regime of boycotts, divestment initiatives, and calls for sanctions against Israel.

Participants stressed that the goals of the Israeli military operations in the Gaza Strip and in Lebanon are evidently much broader than a mere reaction to the capture of Israeli soldiers during military operations by the Palestinian and Lebanese resistance.

In the meanwhile, Israel’s almost forgotten attack on Gaza continues unabated, with total impunity, leaving behind a trail of death, an imminent health disaster, and widespread destruction of vital infrastructure. Again, the pretext that all this criminal devastation, which already caused the death and injury of hundreds of innocent Palestinians, was intended to win the release of one Israeli soldier captured by the Palestinian resistance, does not stand the test of reality or logic.

In the meanwhile, Israel’s almost forgotten attack on Gaza continues unabated, with total impunity, leaving behind a trail of death, an imminent health disaster, and widespread destruction of vital infrastructure. Again, the pretext that all this criminal devastation, which already caused the death and injury of hundreds of innocent Palestinians, was intended to win the release of one Israeli soldier captured by the Palestinian resistance, does not stand the test of reality or logic.

As the UN, the EU and the international community by and large have failed the Palestinian people for decades, we address civil society organizations to take whatever steps, however small, to show their support for Palestine and rejection of Israeli genocidal war crimes. The experience of South Africa shows that the collective action of ordinary people who did not buy South African products, did not watch South African sports and did not have any relationship with South African academic and cultural institutions, was able to pressurize governments to isolate apartheid South Africa.

This meeting is part of a European Commission action on Biometric Identification, Technology and Ethics(BITE), and is being hosted by the Israeli Center for the Study of Bioterrorism. To convene such a conference on such a topic, in such a location, and under the banner of a European ethical initiative is both unethical and profoundly hypocritical. We call upon the Commission and the BITE centres to dissociate themselves from the meeting and also urge international speakers and participants to boycott this meeting.

Since the beginning of its current invasion of Gaza, and under the pretence of freeing a captured soldier, Israel has violated basic principles of international law and committed war crimes, as documented by Amnesty International, the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territory, and other human rights bodies. These crimes and the resulting tragic death toll among Palestinian civilians are not surprising, given Israel’s long record of dehumanizing Palestinians and its collective punishment against them.