Luisa Morgantini, Vice President of the European Parliament
New Europe, January 12, 2009
More than 700 Palestinian people killed, including 220 children in less than two weeks of Cast Lead operation actuated by the Israeli Forces against the Gaza Strip. That means against civil inhabitants, about one million and a half collectively punished by the ongoing Israeli bombing attacks and already devastated by a total and inhuman siege lasting several months. Where has humanity gone if this can happen today under our eyes without being able to do anything to stop this massacre, to protect all civilians, to defend human rights and dignity?
Qassam rockets against Israeli civilians are a crime, but the blockade of the Strip leading to an enormous and unprecedented humanitarian crisis is a crime too: about 290 Palestinians patients died since June 2007 unable to leave the Strip due to the closure imposed by Israel. Amongst these deaths, 35 percent are children. Now, adding to al this, by air, by land and by sea the Gazans are attacked by fire.
Homes, entire buildings, ministries, schools, pharmacies and police stations gutted. Children terrified, hospitals collapsed, medicines nowhere to be found. The Shifa hospital in Gaza city has appealed to the concerned international parties to supply the hospital with morgue fridge units after all its units were crammed with the growing number of bodies. The situation is unbearable. Nothing and nobody are safe from the bombings, also one UNRWA school has been hit killing 45 people in a bash, and no militants were inside shooting rockets, but only refugees and homeless civilians.
Israel is today -more than ever- an unpunished power that can freely break not only International law, but also abuse all human rights for “security reasons.” And we, the International Community and the Quartet, including the EU, have permitted this with our silence, with our negligence that means complicity. Yes, as the European Union, we did a lot to support economically the Palestinians, but they need freedom and independence. Since 1967, Israel has militarily occupied the Palestinian territories: a brutal and colonial occupation. The theft of land; the demolition of houses; checkpoints where Palestinians are treated with contempt, beaten, humiliated; colonies that grow alarmingly, taking over land and water resources, destroying crops. Thousands of political prisoners, who are even denied visits by family members.
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Luisa Morgantini, from Italy, is a Vice President of the European Parliament, and the Confederal Group of the European United Left - Nordic Green Left