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Archive for August 19th, 2009

GALWAY – Thurs 20th August, Public meeting at the Imperial Hotel @ 8pm
CORK      – Fri 21st August – informal meeting with activists
DUBLIN    -Mon 24th August, Public meeting & press conference, teachers club @ 7pm

Derek & Jenny are available for interview – 086 3403689 or contact Niamh 085 7747257 to arrange.
PRESS RELEASE

“We wish to thank and acknowledge the support we recieved from the irish government and the irish people last july, in helping to secure the release of both derek and mairead after their kidnapping and detention in israel”

, Derek and Jenny Graham

Derek & Jenny Graham from Mayo,  are here to get Irish support to bring in desperately needed rebuilding materials into the port of Gaza along with supplies for our partners in the Universities and schools as part of  “Right to Read” campaign.   Derek was thrown in jail along with 20 others including Mairead Maguire as they tried to deliver building supplies and aid to civillians in Gaza who’s homes, schools, hospitals were destroyed by the Israel at start  of the year.  Seven months later and families are still living on the rubble of their homes with no materials to fix the damage and the winter is now approaching.

It is crucial that we continue sending boats to Gaza to challenge Israel’s criminal closure on the Strip,” said Huwaida Arraf, delegation leader.
“Gaza does not need our charity but needs us to stand up against the forces that continue to deliberately deny an entire people their human rights. ”
Even though Israel hijacked our boat, the Spirit of Humanity  in international waters, we are not backing down.
Since August last year the Free Gaza Movement have organized 8 voyages to Gaza successfully arriving in the port of Gaza on 5 occasions,
ours are the first international ship to sail to Gaza since 1967.
International donors pledged over $4 billion to rebuild Gaza, and yet none of them are doing anything about the fact that Israel is not allowing any
building supplies into Gaza,  not to mention coffee, tea, paper, school books, toys for children and thousands of other items.
We need to raise a substantial sum of money and engage in considerable outreach over the next few weeks in order to be able to send the next mission
before the weather changes and the Mediterranean Sea starts becoming unpredictable.” said Huwaida in recent interview.
Seven months after the end of Israel’s military operations in Gaza, 850,000 people in Gaza still rely on the United Nations for food and there is a total absence
of meaningful reconstruction according to a cross party delegation from the Oireachtas Foreign and European Affairs Committees who visited the area last week.
The Deputies met Irishman Mr. John Ging the Agency’s Head of Mission in Gaza, they saw for themselves the appalling humanitarian effects Israel’s military
action and persistent refusal to end its blockade is having on the people of Gaza.
Based on what they observed, the delegation has called for the immediate opening of crossings into Gaza for unimpeded humanitarian aid and reconstruction materials.

The Free Gaza Movement calls upon the international community to join the movement’s efforts to help end the human suffering created by Israeli’s
strangulation of Gaza.    We urge governments, non-governmental organizations and civilians to help alleviate the suffering and provide ships, materials,
heath care professionals,  lawyers and other forms of humanitarian aid immediately and join us in asserting the right of the Palestinian people to have access
to the outside world:  that we will not stay silent as the Palestinian people are deliberately starved and humiliated;  that Palestinians have a right to life with dignity.
For more information contact
Niamh Moloughney
Irish Free Gaza Coordinator
niamh@freegaza.org
091 472279/085 7747257
FREE GAZA MOVEMENT VIDEO
on the Right of Resistance is on YouTube.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rK_u-Bt4RQ
If you have not seen our last video, Is Israel Guilty of Piracy, please also take the time to watch  at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpqnMrLv1bQ

Background informationUNITED NATIONS DEMANDS  ALL TO  ‘Respect Gazan children’s right to education’
The UN Humanitarian Coordinator and other NGO’s have demanded full and unfettered access into and out of Gaza in particular to restore the Gazan educational system.

During the Gaza war, 18 schools were completely destroyed and at least 280 were damaged. Today, one month before the start of the new school year, more than six months after the ceasefires, none of these schools have been properly rebuilt or rehabilitated due to lack of construction materials. Since the imposition of the blockade, students have faced chronic shortages of educational supplies including textbooks, paper and uniforms.

The UN is urging Israel to respect the right to learn and be educated as a fundamental right. Going to school and becoming educated remains the single most cherished priority among Palestinian children.

http://www.ochaopt.org/documents/un_ngo_fact_sheet_blockade_figures_2009_07_28_english.pdf

Free Gaza Movement Partnership projects
“Education is a right. Yet throughout history, societies have used access to education as a weapon of oppression.   We refuse to let Israel blockade our students’ thirst for knowledge.We welcome working with Free Gaza and others to break this siege against our people’s greatest resource.”
Dr. Haidar Eid, professor at Al-Aqsa University
Al-Aqsa University and the Free Gaza Movement (FG) has started  its “Right to Read” campaign which will use the Free Gaza
boats to deliver educational supplies and rebuilding materials to universities and schools throughout the occupied Gaza Strip.

This is not a charitable endeavor. Rather it is an act of solidarity and resistance to Israel’s chokehold on Gaza and attempt to deny
Palestinians education.    Our first shipment of educational supplies will be sent on the next voyage to Gaza in early October.
For more details click on     http://freegaza.org/right-to-read
FREE GAZA MOVEMENT –  JOIN US
Suggestions to become involved – contact niamh@freegaza.org
Donate. You have donated to us so generously to us in the past, we need you to do it again. Please consider making a donation  and asking 9 friends to do the same.
Fundraise. Plan a fundraiser for the Free Gaza Movement in your home or community. A dinner, movie screening, house party or other could be a great way to get your friends and family more aware of and involved in our efforts, while contributing to our goal of purchasing a cargo ship and accompanying passenger boats to go to Gaza.
Educate. We have volunteers in various countries that might be available to come speak at your school, university or other venue about their experiences in Gaza, the horrifying effects of Israel’s illegal blockade, and what the Free Gaza Movement is doing to break the siege. Consider hosting an event or a speaking tour for the Free Gaza Movement. For help in doing this, please contact us.
Outreach. We would like to get celebrities, dignitaries, and community leaders to join our next mission in order to draw more attention to the dire situation in Gaza and the need for immediate action. If you have contact to an actor, singer, athlete, artist, producer, politician or other public personality, including prominent human and civil rights leaders, ask them to lend their voice and presence to this nonviolent action in defense of human rights. Reach out to your member of congress or parliament and ask him/her to join us. If someone is not able to physically be on our boat, ask them for a statement or letter or endorsement.
Contribute. We would like to get as many local, national, and international groups and organizations involved in the success of this mission as possible. Approach a local group or organization about donating cargo to send to Gaza on the next Free Gaza boats. One of the two areas our next mission will focus on is education, taking in books (see information about Right to Read campaign below), paper, ink and school supplies. Ask your local school, church, mosque, synagogue, social justice group, or other NGO to commit to this effort. Even primary schools can contribute to breaking the siege on Gaza by writing letters to schoolchildren in Gaza. Please contact us about the items that we are accepting for cargo.
The second area our mission will focus on is building supplies. It is now more than six months since the end of Israel’s brutal 22-day assault on the Gaza Strip, which led to the killing of over 1400 Palestinians, and the people of Gaza are still living in rubble. Consider approaching a local business about sponsoring reconstruction cargo for Gaza. Please contact us for details.
Right to Read campaign. The response to the Right to Read campaign has been heartening. In addition to the books that the universities in Gaza requested, some of you sent us school supplies for children, as you know that paper, pencils and crayons are among the thousands of items that the Israeli authorities do not allow into Gaza.
Others approached their local universities about offering free e-library and other database access to Palestinian universities; this is invaluable! Also a few authors have donated copies of their books to the campaign; thank you! As great as the response has been, we still have not acquired all of the books we need. Please, let’s keep going! We will start taking these books in on the next voyage.
How soon we can make this next voyage happens will depend on our collective effort. We are aiming for early October.

Let’s make it happen!

In solidarity & struggle,
FREE GAZA MOVEMENT
http://www.FreeGaza.org

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