THE war for the recovery of the land of Palestine is building up rapidly as the heroic Palestinian nation, men women and children battle bravely with the land-grabbing Israeli government, its army, and its hordes of armed settlers.
Last Saturday, Israeli settlers took over an area east of Tubas in the northern Jordan Valley where Palestinian residents are vowing to defend their homes and prevent settlement. The area’s Palestinian residents have called for action to prevent the settlers from setting up an illegal settlement.
Settlers meanwhile attacked protesters, with the encouragement of Israeli forces who used live and rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas canisters and stun grenades against the protesters.
The establishment of settlements on the West Bank violates international humanitarian law, and moreover, the settlements lead to the infringement of international human rights law, said the Israeli information centre for human rights in occupied territories, B’Tselem.
A group of settlers from the illegal settlement of Ramat Yishai, located in the heart of Hebron, also attacked reporters of Al Jazeera TV, trying to force them out of the area.
Meantime, a Palestinian civilian sustained injuries in an attack by Israeli settlers targeting Palestinians’ homes in the village of Al-Tuwanah, south of Hebron.
Fo’ad Emour, a local activist said that settlers from Havat Maon settlement accompanied by a military escort forced their way into the village and pelted stones at homes. Palestinians were hit by stones and injured.
Israeli settler violence against Palestinians and their property is now the rule in the West Bank. Over 700,000 Israeli settlers live in illegal Jewish-only colonial settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law!
Meanwhile, currently Israel is holding some 540 Palestinians in administrative detention, deemed illegal by international law, most of them former prisoners who spent years in prison for their resistance of the Israeli occupation. A total of 14 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli detention are currently on hunger strike in protest at their unfair administrative detention without charge or trial, according to the Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs Commission.
However, the world is no longer just watching these atrocities. Thousands of activists in New York City and New Jersey blocked an Israeli-operated cargo ship from unloading at the Port of New York on Sunday morning in support of the call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israeli apartheid.
Their press release said that this action is part of a global movement, with many thousands of workers pledging to mobilise at different ports around the world to #BlockTheBoat.
However, it is in the UK that workers must deliver a decisive blow for the liberation of Palestine. On May 15th at a meeting outside the Israeli embassy attended by 150,000 people, Palestinian Ambassador to the UK Husam Zomlot spoke for all Palestinians.
He said: ‘I bring a message of defiance from Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the state of Palestine, and from besieged and heroic Gaza, and from the refugee camps – we will not be denied any more!’
Zomlot told the rally: ‘I am told that there are tens of thousands demonstrating in 80 town and cities around the UK today. I bring a message – this time it’s different. This time we will not be denied. United we stand. We have had enormous oppression, apartheid, ethnic cleansing. Enough of war crimes.’
Seven days later on May 22 at an even bigger 250,000-strong rally in central London, National Education Union General Secretary Kevin Courtney said: ‘I am standing here in front of the Trade Unionists for Palestine banner, bearing the names of 15 major unions, the four largest unions in the country – Unite, Unison, GMB, NEU, along with ASLEF, RMT, TSSA, PCS, CWU, UCU, FBU, POA, Equity, the Bakers Union and the United World Transport Union. Trade unionists are here today in solidarity with the general strike in Palestine last week and we need to take similar action for Palestine here.’
Now is the time for the UK trade unions to strike a liberating blow for Palestine by taking strike action to bar all Israeli goods and services from the UK and to force the UK government to recognise the state of Palestine at once with Jerusalem as its capital!
Now is the time to rewrite history by smashing the Balfour Declaration and establishing the state of Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital and with all Palestinians having the right to return.