Reports and news related to the Israeli aggression against Palestinians and Palestine solidarity actions and campaigns.
See also UK Indymedia - Palestine
Three protests took place in Sheffield against the murderous Israeli assult on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, on 31st May, 2nd June and 5th June. On Tuesday 15th June two survivors of the attack, Alex Phillips and Osama Qashoo who were on board the Mavi Marmara spoke at a public meeting organised by the Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign.
For previous coverage see the Sheffield Palestine topic page.
From December 27th 2008 to January 18th 2009 Israeli bombers pounded Gaza. The Israeli assault was the most violent since the occupation began in 1967. On the eighth day of the attack Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) entered Gaza and remained there for two weeks. Throughout the 22 days of the assault civilians were delierately targeted, hospitals were attacked, schools were bombed and 1417 people were killed, including at least 318 children.
The international Palestine solidarity movement is calling for January 2010, the first anniversary of the massacre, to be a month of solidarity actions in support for the campaign for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel. One such call has come from the Free Gaza movement, whose volunteers broke the siege in order to stand in solidarity with the people of Gaza during the massacre.
On December 27th demonstrations, commemorating the first day of the massacre, were held in Brighton, Sheffield, Liverpool and Birmingham while a thousand strong demonstration was held outside the Israeli embassy in London. Elsewhere Manchester's Target Brimar campaign has called for 22 days of waging peace, incuding several actions against Manchester based arms manufacturer, Brimar, who supply equipment used in Israeli fighter aircraft, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign has called for a week of action, from the 9th to the 17th of January, against supermarkets selling Israeli goods, a mass 'die in' is planned in Trafalgar Square on the 16th and Smash EDO have called for a mass demonstration against EDO MBM/ITT, now ITT Integrated Structures, who supply components for F-15s and F-16s used by the Israeli military.
The Viva Palestina convoy was supposed to arrive in Gaza today, breaking the siege and bringing much needed medicine and rebuilding materials. However, the convoy has not been allowed to enter Egypt and has been in Aqabah, Jordan, since December 25th. On the 27th the convoy members began a hunger strike calling for the Egyptian government to allow them to enter. Activists are also arriving in Egypt to join the Gaza Freedom March, a march from Egypt into Gaza and to the Erez crossing. Freedom marchers have already suffered repression from the Egyptian authorities with dozens arrested (and then released) and a Gaza massacre memorial in Cairo shut down.
On Wednesday evening (28 January), a group of students started an occupation of a tenth floor lecture theatre in the Owen Building, where an earlier meeting on the conflict in Gaza had taken place.
Following other occupations around the country, students and workers voted to occupy the lecture theatre and democratically approved a list of demands to Sheffield Hallam University. The full list of demands can be read in their announcement on the newswire.
On Thursday morning (29 January) negotiations began with university management.
A teach-in was scheduled for Thursday afternoon and a screening of La Haine for the early evening. University administration demanded that the group leave at 9pm, threatening police involvement if not. When the deadline passed, the group resolved to stay.
After more discussions, however, the occupation now seems to have been brought to an end. Further negotiations are still taking place with university management about the demands to the university: only one of which has been agreed to: "No victimisation of students or staff supporting the occupation in any form".
The group have a Sheffield Hallam Occupation blog with the most up to date information and the group welcome messages of solidarity and support. Messages of support and mutual aid have been received from other occupations in Bradford, SOAS London, Oxford and Nottingham, as well as Sheffield Trades Council, Sheffield NUJ, South Yorkshire UCU, Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Free Gaza and the Sheffield and Rotherham Stop the War Coalitions.
Mainstream coverage: Sheffield Star
The whole world is watching while Gaza burns and implodes under the might of Israel's military machine. On all major news outlets the charred remains and scattered bodies are a graphic reality TV horror show, right down to the shrouded bundles of what was once 5 little girls who sought safety in a mosque only to be incinerated in a direct hit.
The collective punishment of civilians is a war crime; the whole world is watching gruesome war crimes taking place.
Stop! Look! And listen! Then lobby, campaign and fight for human rights enshrined in international law to be upheld and enforced in this case against the Israeli state war machine.
Newswire: Israeli navy fires on free Gaza ship on human mission to the besieged strip International witnesses speak from Gaza Free Gaza Movement, 27 Dec 2008 | On-the-spot report from Gaza City Ewa Jasiewicz, 28 Dec 2008 | Christmas In Gaza : No More Room In The Morgue Amira Hass, Haaretz correspondent, 28 Dec 2008 | Protest against Gaza massacre in Edinburgh, Scotland 28 Dec 2008 | Nottingham UK, Gaza Emergency Protest 30 Dec: Pictures   | Police launch massive attack on Palestinian solidarity demonstration in London 28 Dec 2008 | General strike called by Palestinians in Israel 28 Dec 2008 | Over 50,000 rally as pro-Gaza demos sweep Egypt's cities 28 Dec 2008 | Tales to tell (from Gaza) 28 Dec 2008, 5.30am, Jabalia | Ongoing Israeli offensive in Gaza; 225 killed over 700 wounded Saed Banora, | IMEMC, 27 Dec 2008
Pictures: This is what a massacre looks like 28 Dec 2008 Protest at Israeli embassy, London, England 28 Dec 2008 More pix from Protest at Israeli embassy, London, England 28 Dec 2008 More from Israeli embasy protest 28 Dec 2008 | Demonstration in solidarity with Gaza in Nablus, Palestine 27 Dec 2008 | Hundreds Protest in Sheffield Against Gaza Massacre 29 Dec 2008 | Nottingham UK, Gaza Emergency Protest 30 Dec: Pictures  
Comment: Bombs over Gaza cartoon by Latuff, 27 Dec 2008 | Israeli Air Strikes in Gaza Kill as Many as 200 people cartoon by Latuff, 27 Dec 2008 | The Gaza blockade Cincinnati Jewish Community Relations Council | Statement on Zionist attacks on Gaza Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, 28 Dec 2008 | Massive attack on Gaza planned many months ago Barak Ravid, Haaretz, 27 Dec 2008
The northern branches of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign held a series of events in Sheffield on 12 May, 2007, in what was described as the biggest Palestinian solidarity event outside London for many years, calling for an end to 40 years of Israeli occupation and for justice in Palestine. The day's events included a march and rally, a mock-up of a checkpoint, food, dancing and a photo exhibition. Sheffield Live! have a report on their site and a audio compilation (MP3 | 36 MB | 41:57 min) from the day.
Kelly, one of two activists who visited Sheffield in April to talk about Palestine and show a film, has now been imprisoned in Israel for filming.
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