The Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC), consisting of 12 international partner campaigns, expresses its profound sadness regarding the current humanitarian crisis in Gaza and our outrage at its political causes. In 2012, the UN declared that the Gaza Strip would be uninhabitable by 2020. One year later and once again, Israel has led another brutal aerial, naval and artillery bombardment against the Palestinian people in Gaza. This attack killed 248 Palestinians, including 66 children, and injured approximately 1,900. Much of Gaza’s already limited and bombed infrastructure was destroyed, including many residential apartments. Israel continues its occupation and 14 year stranglehold and illegal blockade of the Gaza Strip by land, air and sea, severely restricting all movement of people and goods, including urgently needed medical supplies. We continue to mobilize in order to increase international pressure to end the brutal occupation of Palestine and cruel blockade of Gaza.
While the FFC campaigns are encouraged by the increase in support for Palestine from the international community, we are concerned that the so-called ceasefire may lead some people to assume this means peace for Gaza, which could not be further from the truth. The necessary infrastructures required to sustain life have been decimated by Israel, and the Palestinians of Gaza are once again experiencing untold trauma, displacement, food scarcity and lack of access to clean water and medical care. Without the international community maintaining and increasing pressure on Israel and on governments around the world who are complicit in the Israeli occupation, we fear that Israel will continue to commit war crimes and crimes against humanity in Gaza with impunity.
We are encouraged by the galvanization of Palestinian civil society’s powerful actions, such as the recent general strike and the international support it gained. We work with Palestinian groups in the diaspora who are campaigning together in unprecedented ways, and we encourage, and wish to play a role in this ongoing powerful cooperation and movement building. We urge you to support the Palestinian led call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) on Israel.
The FFC has been sailing boats to challenge the illegal sea blockade of Gaza for over 10 years, and we plan to sail again to break the blockade of Gaza when conditions permit in 2022. If you are as outraged as we are about Israel’s brutal and relentless violence, its propaganda machine and the treatment of Palestinian people, please contact an FFC campaign near you and join us in taking direct action to stop the slow, invisible death of more innocent human beings.