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Home arrow News arrow Does Baird even know what they are?
Does Baird even know what they are? PDF Print E-mail
Aug 02, 2014 at 10:57 PM

Israeli newspaper outlines Palestinian demands

Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird has been actively supporting the "unconditional" ceasefire proposed by Netanyahu and backed by Egypt. While it appears "humanitarian", an unconditional ceasefire would mean going back to the status quo before the recent hostilities and continuing Israel's punishing blockade of Gaza. But has Baird even considered what the Palestinians are asking for? It's actually quite reasonable.

As of last week, the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, and several other Palestinian political parties have united on a few key demands as a condition for an end to their resistance in Gaza. Those demands were outlined last weekend by Ha'aretz, one of Israel's main newspapers.

According to Ha’aretz, “Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have sent a document detailing their conditions for a cease-fire to the United States, members of the Arab League and other countries involved in efforts to reach a truce.”

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/.premium-1.607039

Most of the demands relate to ending the 7 year siege of Gaza which many residents of Gaza have called “a living death” and allowing Gazans to fish and farm without harassment by Israeli military.

Among the conditions listed in the document are:
  • opening Gaza’s borders and freedom of movement for Gazan residents
  • opening the border with Egypt
  • permitting Gazan fishermen to sail up to 12 nautical miles from shore
  • allowing Palestinian farmers to work their fields inside the Gaza strip near the "wall"
  • release of Palestinian prisoners arrested in the West Bank following the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenagers
  • the creation of an international committee to oversee implementation

Israel, on the other hand, supported by Egypt, the USA and Canada, has rejected any Palestinian demands and has been promoting an "unconditional" ceasefire.

An “unconditional ceasefire” would mean that the Israeli bombing would stop, but the punishing blockade of Gaza would continue as it has for the last 7 years. It would also mean that the 500 Hamas members arrested in the West Bank in reprisals for the killing of the 3 Israeli teenagers, would remain in jail. (A BBC reporter now has quoted a senior Israeli police authority admitting that Hamas had nothing to do with those murders.)

see here:
http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2014/Jul-26/265229-hamas-not-complicit-in-teens-kidnap-israeli-police.ashx#axzz38eOpAPdz
 
These simple Palestinian demands put Israel in an awkward position.

To many independent observers, they appear eminently reasonable. If international public opinion forces Israel and its US backers to accept them, Israel's "Protective Edge" gamble will have been a big mistake. Instead of crushing Hamas, Israel will be forced by international public opinion to end the siege of Gaza. It will also have exposed itself to international condemnation for its murderous assault on mostly unarmed civilians.

Peter Larson
Chair,
National Education Committee on Israel/Palestine
National Council on Canada-Arab Relations

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Vancouver panel says: "Enough!"
Wednesday, June 6th, 2007

It is the conviction of Canpalnet that there are many and varied pathways that can and do bring Canadians to a simple conclusion; namely, that Israel's occupation must be ended, for elementary justice, and to salvage the humanity of all.

To illustrate this, a diverse and distinguished panel of speakers assembled in Vancouver at a press conference on June 6th to express their opposition to Israel’s 40 year occupation of Palestinian lands, and to call for the government of Canada to take action against that occupation and in support of human rights and international law. The conference took place in the Bank of Nova Scotia Room at Simon Fraser University’s Harbour Centre campus in downtown Vancouver.

Dr. Naseer Aruri, noted Palestinian intellectual and prolific author, was a special guest. Born in Jerusalem, now Emeritus Chancellor Professor at the University of Massachussetts, he has been a member of the international board of Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch (USA), and Palestinian human rights groups. His most recent work is Dishonest Broker: The U.S. Role in Israel and Palestine.

A statement of support was sent by the all-party parliamentary group in Ottawa, the Canada Palestine Parliamentary Association.

That message and the statements of the panelists (listed below) are posted on this site.  

  • Svend Robinson, long time member of Parliament.
  • Sister Elizabeth Kelliher, of the Franciscan Sisters of the Atonement.
  • Murray Dobbin, journalist, broadcaster, and author of books on Canadian politics.
  • David Diamond, founder and artistic director of Headlines Theatre and recipient of the City of Vancouver’s Cultural Harmony Award.
  • Lee Lakeman, organizer of Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter and a representative for the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centers.
  • Carl Rosenberg, editor of Canadian Jewish Outlook Magazine.
  • Terry Greenberg, recently retired member of Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs.
  • Reverend Brenda Faust, Minister of Port Coquitlam Trinity United Church.
  • Henry Krause, pastor of Langley Mennonite Fellowship.
  • Cynthia Flood, prize-winning Canadian short-story writer.
  • Dr. Ivar Ekeland, Canada Research Chair in Mathematical Economics at UBC and former President of the University of Paris-9.
  • Ken Davidson, head of the International Solidarity Committee of CUPE (Canadian Union of Public Employees).
  • Thekla Lit, founder and president of BC ALPHA (Association for Learning and Preserving the History of World War 2 in Asia).

To see podcast of press conference:

40 Years of Occupation(Part 1) Press Conf. WM video - 9 mins - June 6, 2007

40 Years of Occupation(Part 2) Press Conf. video - 9 mins - June 6, 2007

 

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