BUILDING SOLDARITY, CAMPAIGNING FOR JUSTICE FOR PALESTINE
UPCOMING EVENTS IN WALTHAM FOREST – GET INVOLVED!
· There will be a PSC stall in Walthamstow Town Square on Saturday 1st November and in Leyton opposite the tube station at the entrance to the shopping area on Saturday 15th November. If you are in the area why not pop by between 11am and 2pm?
· On Sunday 30th November we will have a stall at St Barnabas Fayre, St Barnabas Church, St Barnabas Road, Walthamstow. We will also have a Skype link with a family in Bethlehem, this is really a great opportunity to speak to and engage with a wonderful family.
· Stand Up for Palestine – Fundraiser with Alexi Sayle on 4th November at Red Gallery.
· On 16th November PSC members in Brixton are running an event – Children in Brixton for the Children in Gaza at the Karubi Education Centre at 3 pm.
Continuing Clashes in East Jerusalem
Ongoing clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in East Jerusalem have intensified significantly over the last week, leading many news agencies to report it may mark the beginning of a new widespread Palestinian uprising. In a further escalation, on 30th October Israel temporarily sealed of the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif complex to Muslim worshippers for the first time in 14 years after the shooting of a right-wing Israeli activist the previous day. The suspected shooter was later shot dead by Israeli forces. A spokesman for Mahmoud Abbas described the decision as tantamount to a declaration of war.
This follows the disclosure in the Israeli press a few days ago that, 400 new settler houses in Har Homa and 600 in Ramat Shlomo in East Jerusalem, are to be built in response to pressure from right wing politicians within the Israeli government to increase the pace of settlement building in East Jerusalem.
Despite calls for calm by the Israeli government and claims they are simply responding to violence when it breaks out, the continuing provocations and escalation has led to the tensest atmosphere in ten years as Israeli forces continue to fire stun grenades at protestors throwing tiles and stones. One resident stated, “It is becoming like another intifada”.
Rock Throwing to be Punishable by 20 Years
Israel National News is reporting that in light of escalating Palestinian resistance in East Jerusalem, legislation is being sped through making rock throwing punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment. The legislation also will include provisions for financial penalties to be imposed upon the families of anyone arrested for throwing rocks.
Israel’s New Segregation Laws
The Israeli government has taken the decision that Palestinians from the West Bank should not be allowed to travel on the same buses as illegal settlers. This means that Palestinians working in Israel will no longer be able to take buses going directly from Central Israel into the West Bank and will only be able to return through the Eyal Crossing as reported by RT.com. This is a blatant piece of segregationist legislation more akin to apartheid South Africa than a supposed beacon for liberal democracy in the Middle East.
The pro-settler politician, Moti Yogev is quoted as saying, “Riding these buses is unreasonable. They are full of Arabs!” I’m not sure what Mr Yogev expects from buses travelling into the West Bank.
MP’s Take Historic Decision
In a historic vote, the House of Commons voted by 274 to votes to 12 to recognise the state of Palestine. Two out of three Waltham Forest MPs voted for the motion.
Richard Ottaway MP and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Select Community stated, “The annexation of the 950 acres in the West Bank just a few months ago has outraged me more than anything else in my political life…. I have to say to the government of Israel – if it is losing people like me, it is going to be losing a lot of people”.
Many of the MP’s who spoke in the debate referred to the thousands of emails they received from their constituents. Thank you to all those who lobbied their MPs, we now need to make sure we keep the pressure up on our MPs and Government to officially recognise Palestine and join the over 134 countries, including Sweden, around the world that have already done so. We also call for the end to the supplying of arms to Israel and support a programme of BDS. Please continue to write to your MP’s and make sure Palestine is NOT forgotten.
New Caribbean Palestinian Solidarity Movement
Peter, a former officer of the Waltham Forest PSC has been instrumental in setting up a new group based in the Bahamas as the solidarity movement continues to spread and gain momentum around the world.
Their Secretary, Lalu Hanuman, is a good friend of Waltham Forest PSC and attended one of our recent public meetings in Walthamstow. On marking the sixty seventh anniversary of the United Nations partition of Palestine he said, “This is not about religion, this is about fundamental human rights. We in the Caribbean, who have endured oppression in all its nefarious forms, from chattel slavery to indentured slavery, should be in the forefront of solidarity actions with our Palestinian brothers and sisters.” Waltham Forest PSC wishes Caribbean Against Apartheid in Palestine the best of luck.
If you are interested in getting involved with Waltham Forest PSC, or of course just want to comment on the newsletter, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or you can write to WFPSC, Hornbeam, 458 Hoe Street, Walthamstow, E17 9AH.