Action alert over Israeli attack

The following action alert was issued by the Irish-Palestinian Solidarity Campaign to hold Israel to account over the murder of international human rights activists and the hijacking of their aid flotilla.

As you will be aware the Israeli military this morning hijacked the unarmed Gaza-bound Freedom Flotilla in international waters, murdering up to 19 passengers and diverting the ships to Israel. This is a shocking display of disregard for the norms of international law and WE NEED TO TAKE ACTION NOW! Israel cannot be allowed enjoy impunity. What you can do:

1) Attend the protests taking place today around the country

2) Send a letter of protest to Irish TDs demanding the Irish Government take action aginst Israel (sample letter and email addresses below)

3) Call the Department of Foreign Affairs on (01) 4780822 and demand action.

4) Call the Israeli Embassy in Ireland and let them know how you feel about this outrageous attack - (01) 230 9400 / 087 61711218 (out of hours number), fax them on (01) 230 9446 or email them on - The more the better!

5) Support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign

6) Sign the petition calling for the explusion of the Israeli Ambassador at the following link:

Sample Letter - please change and adapt as you see fit.

To whom it concerns,

I am writing to protest forcefully the murder of upwards of 19 unarmed international human rights activists by the rogue Israeli state in the early hours of this morning. I was shocked and grief-stricken when I heard that Israeli commandos had stormed the Mavi Marmara, a Turkish ship leading the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, which was bringing 10,000 tonnes of supplies and reconstruction materials to the people of Gaza, still traumatised and in many cases homeless after Israel’s barbarous assault in December 2008/January 2009 (Operation Cast Lead).

I am anxious about the fate of the Irish activists sailing in the humanitarian flotilla, one of whom is said by Israeli media to have been wounded.

While Minister Michael Martin is to be commended for having expressed his “grave concern” and criticised Israel’s “totally unacceptable what was a humanitarian mission”, the government of Ireland cannot fully absolve itself from responsibility in this matter. Despite the conclusion of the Goldstone Report that Israel may have committed war-crimes and crimes against humanity during Operation Cast Lead, and despite its own expressed reservations, on 10th May last Ireland voted to grant Israel accession to the OECD.

Furthermore, the Irish government has consistently opposed the suspension of Israel’s trading privileges under Article 2 of the Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement, which allows for that Agreement’s suspension in the case of egregious violations of human rights by either partner. In view of such inaction, Israel naturally believes that it is above the law; its actions against the Gaza Freedom Flotilla provide further evidence of its belief in its own impunity.

This impunity must end. Independent Palestinian parliamentarian Mustafa Barghouti has described Israel’s onslaught on the flotilla as “an act of war against Turkey, Ireland and Sweden”. Ireland must now expel the Israeli Ambassador, and must work within the European Union for a suspension of Israel’s trading privileges and for the freezing of its OECD membership until such time as it begins to comply with international law and international humanitarian law.

Another very obvious way in which the Irish government can show its opposition to these Israeli outrages is to refrain from signing any more Defence contracts with Israel or Israeli companies.

I am also calling on you to support the Palestinian call for a comprehensive Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against the rogue state of Israel.

Yours sincerely

[Your name]

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