The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) will stage a protest march in London on 25th July to mark Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day.
IHRC chair Massoud Shadjareh said the annual commemmoration of the dispossession and oppression of the Palestinian people will take place on 25 July and end in a rally outside the US embassy, chosen as a rallying point because of Washington’s enormous and unflinching support for the Israeli regime.
IHRC is also calling on all supporters of justice to fly the flag of Palestine from their cars, homes or properties as a show of support for the beleaguered inhabitants of the Gaza Strip. Almost 200 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have been killed since Israel began a brutal military assault on the occupied territory this month.
The ‘fly a flag’ campaign is designed to show solidarity with the Palestinians and in doing so demonstrate the strength and breadth of support that their cause enjoys across Britain and which is not being reflected in mainstream media reporting of recent events.
In another development, former cabinet minister Sadiq Khan MP, said the people of Gaza have the right to live in peace and safety, just as Israelis have the right not to live in constant fear for their safety and that of their families. Almost all the casualties so far have been Palestinian civilians, a fifth of whom were children. Religion and nationality aside, all lives are equal – the life of a Palestinian child is worth no less than the life of an Israeli child.
“I have already written to William Hague, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, asking that he use all influence possible on behalf of the UK to achieve an immediate halt to the violence, an end to the ongoing siege of Gaza, and ensure that human rights and international law are upheld. I have also written to the Secretary of State for International Development, to request that all efforts be made to ensure a free flow of vital life-saving aid, medical supplies and other equipment to Gaza via humanitarian aid organisations.
“There have been appalling and inexcusable acts of violence. With over 150 confirmed dead, this is clearly a critical point in the region’s history and is bringing unimaginable suffering to innocent people.
“The scale of human suffering in the region is immense and cannot be tolerated. The continuous, disproportionate and indiscriminate bombardments by Israeli airplanes is causing huge suffering. Ultimately, this historic conflict can only be settled through a negotiated two-state solution involving a fair settlement on Jerusalem, the rights of refugees and land swaps to respect the pre-1967 borders.
“One key source of tension is the hundreds of thousands of new settlers who now live in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The building of settlements in these areas is opposed by most countries – including the UK – and is widely felt to be in breach of the Geneva Convention (Article 49) and a number of UN Security Council Resolutions.
“The settlement building by Israel is illegal and a key barrier to advancing peace negotiations. We have repeatedly called for Israel to immediately end settlement expansion, and fully support a negotiated two-state solution that establishes a viable Palestinian state alongside a secure Israel with both sides enjoying the respect and recognition of their neighbours and the wider international community.
“Time is now short to avert further bloodshed.”