Besieged Gaza – Occupied Palestine: Since June 12, 2014, Israel has launched a heinous attack against both Gaza and the West Bank. It has so far conducted more than 100 airstrikes against civilian targets in Gaza. Nine Palestinian civilians, including three women and two children, were wounded by shrapnel, and three civilians, including two children, were injured by the flying glass. Moreover, three civilians sustained bruises. Besides, a chicken barn, greenhouses, a country house, two barracks for fodders and sheep were destroyed, and 3000 chicks died. Israeli naval forces continue to target Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza waters. Therefore, Israel further aggravates the situation for Palestinians in Gaza, which has been under a brutal military siege for more than seven years and still going on.
Recently, since the announcement of kidnapping three Israeli settlers on June 12, though there is not a proof that it is a Hamas or even Palestinian operation, the population of the Gaza Strip continues, as typically occurring, to pay the price and bear the blaze of Israel’s policies that hinges on deterrence and retribution. During the past few weeks, Israel has been violently and intensely launching a series of air strikes against the strip as it has already mounted the largest crackdown in the occupied West Bank in a decade resulting in the killing of 9 Palestinians (3 of them are from Gaza), not to mention the detention of more than 500 alleged members of Hamas, and searching of 1,300 homes, buildings, and sites in the West Bank. In addition to the horrible crime of kidnaping and burning to death the Palestinian teen Mohammed Abu Khudair in Jerusalem by Israeli settlers.
Israel continues to impose a total medieval blockade on the Gaza Strip isolating it from the outside world. This moment, more than 15,000 Palestinian patients are anxiously waiting to leave Gaza for treatment through the border crossing with Egypt.
Meanwhile, the United States continues providing the decisive military, economic, diplomatic and even media and ideological support for these crimes. US continues to ‘reward’ Israel with 6 billion dollars of tax-payers money. For the Israeli apartheid regime this translates as the green light to unleash the 4th most powerful military on us to ‘do its worst’ against our civilian population, of which over half in Gaza are children and over 2 thirds are UN registered refugees.
Because collective punishment is a war crime, under the 1949 Geneva Conventions, we urge the international community to put an end to the ongoing all-out military assault aimed against the total population of Gaza, open the Rafah crossing, the only travel port in the besieged Gaza Strip, permanently and heed our call to Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with International Law.
We, Gaza-based BDS activists and Palestine’s Students’ Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel (PSCABI), salute our supporters all over the world, and call on you to stand on the right side of history and support our struggle for freedom, justice, and equality.