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University of Sydney Backs BDS

Business  (tags: Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip, Israeli occupation crimes against Palest, BDS, University of Sydney, world news, U.S. NEWS-MEDIA, settlements, israeli forces, ICC, Sydney, Australia, Refugees&Relief, 'HUMANRIGHTS!', freedoms )

- 459 days ago -
The move comes as a response to the lethal crackdown by Israeli occupation forces on Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip


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fly b (26)
Monday April 16, 2018, 9:58 pm
Dozens of academics at the University of Sydney have declared their support for the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, reported the Australian.

The move comes as a response to the lethal crackdown by Israeli occupation forces on Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip.

The Australian notes, according to Days of Palestine, that signatories to the BDS pledge say they “will not attend conferences sponsored by Israeli universities, participate in academic exchange schemes, or otherwise collaborate professionally with Israeli universities until the stated goals have been fulfilled.”

The BDS campaign, describes the paper, is an international movement “inspired by the success of boycotts in bringing an end to apartheid in South Africa.”

Nick Riemer, a senior lecturer in English and linguistics at the University of Sydney and a member of its BDS group, said the response from fellow academics was encouraging and expressed his hope that the pledge would spread to other Australian universities.

“People are already talking at Melbourne about the possibility of something like this,” he said.

According to the Sydney BDS website, some 40 academics have currently endorsed the pledge.

fly b (26)
Monday April 16, 2018, 10:11 pm
Calling on world conscience.
7 April 2018

Much has already been written and said about the bloody events of the first Great March of Return protest on 30 March.

Some of it will be forgotten in the bloodshed of the second march, on 6 April, which predictably saw Israel respond in the same brutal manner to popular unarmed demonstrations that it simply won’t countenance.

Indeed, the date of the first protest coincided with the commemoration of Land Day, when Palestinians protesting land confiscation inside Israel in 1976 were also subjected to lethal crowd control tactics and six unarmed demonstrators were shot and killed.

On 30 March 2018 the result was even more bloody. Fourteen protesters died on the day, and others succumbed to their injuries over the following week, bringing the total fatalities to 17.

Human Rights Watch found no evidence of any credible threat to Israeli soldiers, operating under a shoot-to-kill policy, posed by demonstrators.

After nine were killed during protests on 6 April, including a journalist, and another protester was shot dead earlier in the week, the total number Great March of Return fatalities has reached 27. Nearly 2,000 Palestinians have been injured – more than half of them by live fire – since the launch of the protests.

The Great March of Return demonstrations – which are set to run until 15 May, when Palestinians commemorate the anniversary of the 1948 ethnic cleansing of Palestine – have been called to restate demands for the right of return of refugees.

The right of return is an issue that, if it is broached at all, only receives the most cursory of attention from non-Palestinians and in the foreign and Israeli media and then only to be brushed aside.

And yet, it is an issue that lies at the very heart of the Palestine question.

A right to pass down the generations

It was this that motivated Halima Aqel, 76, to come to one of the gatherings of protesters on 30 March.

She had brought her seven granddaughters to an area on the eastern edge of the Zaytoun neighborhood, on the edge of Gaza City and in between the Nahal Oz and Karni commercial crossings – both long underutilized because of Israel’s 10-year-old blockade on Gaza – and not 900 meters from the barbed wire fence and concrete wall Israel has erected around the impoverished coastal strip of land.

“I still dream of returning to my village,” said Aqel, after taking a selfie with her granddaughters.

Aqel was six when she and her family had to leave the village of Burayr, and, like so many of her generation, she still carries the key to the family home, a key her father passed to her when he died and that she will pass to one of her sons.

“My participation today is to express this hope of return. And if I am not of the generation who will return, I’m here to instill the necessity of returning in my granddaughters’ minds and hearts,” she said. “They can complete the journey after us.”

It is 70 years now since the Nakba or catastrophe in 1948, when more than 750,000 Palestinians fled or were forced to flee their homes and lands in what was to become Israel.

They were never allowed to return to reclaim their possessions or properties which were instead either confiscated by the new state and doled out to Jewish-only arrivals, or, as in the case of some 500 villages, destroyed and left to disappear.

A little further toward the boundary with Israel, in the Malaka area, now just some 700 meters from the edge of Gaza, 22 tents had been erected, each carrying the name of a village or town those inside had left in 1948.

One of these was filled with members of the Labad family and bore the name Ashkelon, an ancient city, now one Israel’s main cities in the south, where al-Majadal Asqalan was once home to more than 10,000 Palestinians.

A note to the world

Ismail Labad, 58, told The Electronic Intifada that the tents were erected in an attempt to raise awareness internationally and “guarantee that out right of return is recognized by the international community.”

Labad, a clothes merchant, was speaking while preparing lunch with a dozen members of his family in front of the white tent that bore the name of the place they think of as home and next to which one of his children, Ibrahim, 12, was busy raising the Palestinian flag.

Hundreds of similar tents were erected from south to north in Gaza, both on 30 March and 6 April, and thousands of men, women and children took part. The crowds were not deterred by the violent response to the first protest and turned out again in their thousands for the second week.

They will turn out for the third too. The protest represents a sense of unity among Palestinians around a core cause that supersedes factional differences. Demonstrators held the Palestinian flag aloft, not their factional colors.

Organizers say the series of protests is an attempt at reminding the world of its responsibilities to Palestinian refugees, whose right of return is not only mandated by UN General Assembly Resolution 194, but in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

“The mass return march is a message from Palestinians to the world to reconsider our cause,” Yahya Sinwar, the head of Hamas in Gaza, told journalists at the start of the protest on 30 March.

“The activities of the march will not stop until we’re back to our lands occupied by Israel 70 years ago.”

Hamza Abu Eltarabesh is a journalist from Gaza.

fly b (26)
Monday April 16, 2018, 10:49 pm
Dublin City Council Votes to Support BDS.
April 10, 2018

The Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) has warmly welcomed the vote by Dublin City Council to formally support and endorse the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for freedom, justice and equality.

The motion, voted for by a majority of Councillors, according to the PNN, also commits the council to discontinue all business contracts it has with Hewlett-Packard (HP) and its spin-off DXC Technology due to these companies’ provision and operation of “much of the technology infrastructure that Israel uses to maintain its system of apartheid and settler colonialism over the Palestinian people.” In a separate motion, the council voted to call on the Irish government to expel the Israeli Ambassador.

IPSC Chairperson Fatin Al Tamimi praised the motions saying, “speaking as a Palestinian and a Dubliner I’m so proud that the local government of my adoptive the city has voted to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people’s struggle for freedom, justice and equality. It is wonderful that Dublin City Council will now become part of the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement called for by Palestinian civil society. It is particularly welcome that the council chose to focus on Hewlett-Packard and its spin-off DXC, as these companies have been profiteering from the violent oppression of Palestinians and illegal colonisation of their land.”

Ms. Tamimi thanked the Council for their principled stance, even in the face of interference by the Israeli Embassy: “I would like to sincerely thank all the councillors who voted in favour of the motion, in particular People Before Profit Councillor John Lyons for moving the motion on BDS. It is concerning that, once again, officials of the Israeli Embassy sought to attempt to interfere in Irish democracy by writing to the Lord Mayor demanding he block the motion from even being discussed. I, therefore, thank the Lord Mayor for of Dublin for his support for the motion and refusing to accede to the demands of the Israeli Ambassador. I also thank the councillors who moved and voted for the motion supporting the expulsion of the Israeli Ambassador – showing that the majority of Dublin’s councillors do not welcome this professional apologist for war crimes and human rights violations.”

Ms Tamimi concluded, saying that: “BDS is the most effective way for international supporters of Palestinians rights to put pressure on the Israeli state to end its decades of colonial oppression of my people. It is especially poignant that this motion was passed as we approach the 70th anniversary of the Nakba, the violent dispossession of two third of the indigenous Palestinians in 1948 – a dispossession that continues to this day, and which most recently has seen the murder of some 30 unarmed Palestinians in Gaza as they protest for their Right of Return mandated under international law.

I would urge all people who care about the rights of Palestinians to get active in the BDS movement in Ireland and join organisations like the Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Academics for Palestine, Students for Justice in Palestine, Trade Union Friends of Palestine, Sadaka, and others to help Palestinians achieve freedom. Finally. we would urge other councils around Ireland to emulate Dublin by adopting similar motions in support of the rights of the people of the Palestine.”

fly b (26)
Monday April 16, 2018, 10:49 pm
Palestinian Activist Family on Palestine Land Day.

Janet B (0)
Wednesday April 18, 2018, 8:01 pm

Margie FOURIE (148)
Thursday April 19, 2018, 1:22 am
Stay out of other peoples business.

Paola S (11)
Friday April 20, 2018, 12:17 pm
Thank you for posting

fly b (26)
Saturday April 21, 2018, 9:25 am
Natalie Portman Rejects Israel Prize in Light of its Crimes in Gaza
April 20, 2018

After decades of egregious human rights violations against Palestinians, Israel’s recent massacre of peaceful protesters in Gaza has made its brand so toxic that even well-known Israeli-American cultural figures, like Natalie Portman, now refuse to blatantly whitewash, or art-wash, Israeli crimes and apartheid policies.

The Palestinian-led, Nobel Peace Prize nominated Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights has been growing in the cultural mainstream in the last few years. Of the twenty six Oscar nominees in 2016, none has accepted an all-expense-paid Israeli propaganda junket.

Towards the end of 2017, the New Zealand star Lorde heeded appeals from BDS activists and announced the cancellation of a gig in Tel Aviv. In response to an ugly smear campaign against her run by Israel lobby figures in the US, over one hundred artists, including Hollywood stars, signed a letter in the Guardian supporting her.

As a Washington Post report on Lorde’s act of solidarity with Palestinians concluded:

Lorde will almost certainly be one of the last major artists to schedule an Israel concert date without appearing to have fully considered the global implications. From now on … merely scheduling a concert date in Israel will be considered a political act.

Portman’s rebuff to Israeli honors underlines this conclusion.

As was the case in the struggle against apartheid South Africa, the BDS movement calls on all artists and cultural figures to respect the nonviolent Palestinian picket line and stay away from apartheid Israel until the UN-stipulated rights of the Palestinian people are fully respected.

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) was initiated in 2004 to contribute to the struggle for Palestinian freedom, justice and equality. PACBI advocates for the boycott of Israeli academic and cultural institutions, given their deep and persistent complicity in Israel’s denial of Palestinian rights as stipulated in international law. Visit PACBI at and follow us on Twitter @PACBI

04/19/18 Over 500 Latin American Artists Endorse Cultural Boycott of Israel
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