Stop Arming Israel

Update posted October 10:


More Than 60,000 Signatories, Including Nobel Prize Laureates, Celebrities and Religious Organizations, Call For Military Embargo on Israel Ahead of Gaza Donors Conference

New York, NY – As international donors prepare to gather in Cairo on October 12 for a conference to rebuild Gaza after the devastation inflicted by Israel in its 51-day assault last summer, the Palestinian Boycott Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) delivered apetition signed by over 60,000 people including Nobel Laureates, artists and public intellectuals, to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon calling on the UN and governments around the world to take immediate steps to implement a comprehensive and legally binding military embargo on Israel, similar to that imposed on South Africa during the apartheid era.

The petition highlights the complicity of the United States, the European Union, and other countries, through their entrenched military trade agreements with Israel, in the crimes Israel is committing against the Palestinian people. It states: “By importing and exporting arms to Israel and facilitating the development of Israeli military technology, governments are effectively sending a clear message of approval for Israel’s military aggression, including its war crimes and possible crimes against humanity.”

Mahmoud Nawajaa, the general coordinator of the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), said: “The recent brutal Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip, which killed more than 2,100 Palestinians, the vast majority of them civilians, including 501 children, could only be carried out because of the impunity and military aid Israel is provided by the international community.”

“During the donor reconstruction conference on October 12, we want to remind governments of their complicity in Israel’s violations of international law, and their legal and moral responsibility for ending it,” Nawajaa added. “The governments of the world cannot provide Israel the military hardware it uses to destroy Palestinian lives and at the same time claim that they support Palestinian rights. It’s time for world leaders to put their money where their mouths are and to support nonviolent Palestinian-led efforts such as this to defend themselves and secure their rights.”

Signatories to the petition include Nobel Peace Laureates Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu,Adolfo Peres EsquivelJody WilliamsMairead MaguireRigoberta Menchú and Betty Williams; intellectuals and academics such as Noam ChomskyRashid KhalidiJudith Butler,Ilan Pappé, and David Palumbo-Liu; artists such as authors Alice Walker and Michael Ondaatje, musicians Roger WatersBrian Eno, and Boots Riley, and filmmakers Mira NairMike Leigh,Ken Loach, and John Pilger; and faith groups such as American Jews for a Just Peace, theBaptist Peace Fellowship of North America, the Episcopal Peace Fellowship’s Palestine Israel Network, the Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace, the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, the Quaker Palestine Israel Network, and the United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network. The call for an arms embargo against Israel is also supported by human rights organizations such as Amnesty International.

The Palestinian Boycott Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) is the coordinating body for the growing global boycott and divestment initiatives being carried out by unions, faith-based organizations, civil society groups and academics and cultural workers against Israel until it ends its occupation and colonization of Palestine.

The petition was submitted on behalf of the BNC by three U.S.-based human rights organizations:Adalah-NY: The New York Campaign for the Boycott of IsraelJewish Voice for Peace, andCODEPINK Women for Peace.

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