Global grassroots initiative in spirit of Gandhi aims to break blockade

The Gaza Freedom March that will take place in Gaza on December 31 is an historic initiative to break the siege that has imprisoned the 1.5 million people who live there. Conceived in the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King and nonviolent resistance to injustice worldwide, the march will gather people from all over the world to march—hand in hand—with the people of Gaza to demand that the Israelis open the borders.

Marking the one-year anniversary of the December 2008 Israeli invasion that left over 1,400 dead, this is a grassroots global response to the inaction on the part of world leaders and institutions. Over 800 international delegates from 35 countries have already signed up and more are signing on every day. Participants include Pulitzer Prize winning author Alice Walker, leading Syrian comedian Duraid Lahham, French Senator Alima Boumediene–Thiery, author and Filipino Parliament member Walden Bello, former European Parliamentarians Luisa Morgantini from Italy and Eva Quistorp from Germany, President of the U.S. Center for Constitutional Rights Attorney Michael Ratner, Japanese former Ambassador to Lebanon Naoto Amaki, French hip-hop artists Ministere des Affaires Populaires, and 85-year-old Holocaust survivor Hedy Epstein.

We also have families of three generations, doctors, lawyers, diplomats, 70 students, an interfaith group that includes rabbis and priests, a women’s delegation, a Jewish contingent, a veterans group and Palestinians born overseas who have never seen their families in Gaza.

The international delegates will enter Gaza via Egypt during the last week of December. In the morning December 31, they will join Palestinians in a non-violent march from Northern Gaza to the Erez/Israeli border. On the Israeli side of the Erez border will be a gathering of Palestinians and Jews who are also calling on the Israeli government to open the border.

Inside Gaza, excitement is growing. Representatives of all aspects of civil society, including students, professors, refugee groups, unions, women’s organizations, NGOs, have been busy organizing and estimate that at least 50,000 Palestinians will participate. People from the different sectors will march in their uniforms–fishermen, doctors, students, farmers, etc. Local Palestinian rappers, hiphop bands and Dabbkeh dancers will perform on mobile stages.

 

For more information see www.gazafreedommarch.org , especially FAQ section, or contact:
In the US: Medea Benjamin 415-235-6517 medea@globalexchange.org
Ann Wright 808-741-1141 microann@yahoo.com
In Gaza: Haider Eid 970 599 441 766 haidareid@yahoo.com
In Europe (Portugal): Ziyaad Lunat +351938349206 z.lunat@googlemail.com

 

 

Published on: Dec 18, 2009

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