Freedom Flotilla: Israeli Occupation Forces attacked and boarded our boat–2 Released but most Participants still in Prison–Take Action!

Freedom Flotilla – Staff – July 30, 2018

The-participants-approaching-Gaza

Freedom Flotilla Coalition News Statement
For Immediate Release, Monday July 30, 2018 15:00 CEST.

Two people from Al Awda (The Return) have been released, but most of the crew and participants are still in unlawful detention at Givon prison in Israel. We are still gravely concerned for their safety and well-being as we had no contact with most of them as of 14:00 CEST today. We continue to demand that our boat and the medical supplies on board reach their rightful recipients, Palestinian civil society in Gaza.

Although the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) claim that the capture of our vessel happened ‘without exceptional incident’, eye-witness Zohar Chamberlain Regev reports that at the time of boarding: “People on board were tasered and hit by masked IOF soldiers. We did not get our passports or belongings before we got off the boat. Do not believe reports of peaceful interception.” We urgently need to know the details of who was injured and how seriously, and what treatment they are receiving, if any. A military attack on a civilian vessel is a violent act and a violation of international law. Taking 22 people from international waters to a country which is not their destination constitutes an act of kidnapping, which is also unlawful under the international Convention of the Law of Sea.

From the time we lost contact around 13:15 local time on Sunday, we know that the IOF blocked all communication signals, including satellite phones. We are very concerned about this violation of journalists’ right to report freely and we remain gravely concerned about their ability to keep their professional equipment and their storage media. As Australian journalist Chris Graham recently observed “Bad things happen when good people stay silent, as history well records. But horrendous things happen when media are prevented from scrutinizing the actions of a state.”

Two of our participants who are Israeli citizens have been charged with attempting to enter Gaza and conspiracy to commit a crime, and were released on bail this morning. One of them, boat leader Zohar Chamberlain Regev, reports seeing blood on the deck of the Al Awda as the last participants were being dragged off the ship.

In comparison with the violence routinely directed at Palestinian civilians, including at fishers from Gaza, and the violent capture of Palestinian fishing boats, yesterday’s seizure and kidnapping may not be the most serious of Israeli crimes. What these violents acts have in common is that there is no accountability demanded by other governments and Israel continues to enjoy total impunity.

We call on national governments, civil society and international organizations to demand that Israeli authorities immediately release our boat so that we can deliver our much-needed medical supplies on Al Awda and the fishing boat itself to the rightful recipients in Gaza. Detailed specification of our exact cargo on board are available on request.

Israel’s capture of the lead boat in this Gaza-bound flotilla may seem like a predictable outcome to some, but that doesn’t make it any less violent nor any less illegal. Our second boat Freedom will follow Al Awda within a day or two, and the Freedom Flotilla will continue until the blockade ends and Palestinians of Gaza regain their full freedom of movement.

Details about detainees still in prison, including their last videos and personal statements, can be found on our website and Facebook pages: www.facebook.com/FreedomFlotillaCoalition/

For more information, contact media spokespeople: https://jfp.freedomflotilla.org/media-room-2
(Low resolution photo transmitted from the boat during final hours of navigation)

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SOS – Just Future for Palestine

Israeli Occupation Forces attacked and boarded our boat
(Al Awda) – 13:15 CEST/29 July 2018. On board were 22 people, some of whom were violently assaulted.
SOS video and/or audio messages are available on our Facebook page. Take action to protect them now – see below!

United Nations
His Excellency Antonio Guterres
United Nations Secretary-General
Email: sgcentral@un.org
Web: www.un.org/en/contact-us/index.html (write message)
Twitter: @antonioguterres @UN_Spokesperson

Australia – Chris Graham
The Hon Julie Bishop MP Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs – Tel: +61 2 62777500 (ACT)
+61 8 9388 0288 (Perth number of Electorate office)
Email: Julie.Bishop.MP@aph.gov.au
Contact an MP or Senator – search here.
More information from our partner: www.facebook.com/GazaAustralia/

Canada – Larry Commodore
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Tel: +1 613 9925234 Fax: +1 613 9969607
Email: Chrystia.Freeland@parl.gc.ca
Constituency Office
344 Bloor Street West (Main Office) Suite 510 Toronto, Ontario M5S 3A7
Tel: +1 416 9281451 Fax: +1 416 9282377

Denmark – Mikkel Grüner
Anders Samuelsen, Minister for Foreign Affairs
Tel: +45 3392 0000
Email: udenrigsministeren@um.dk
Other contact details of advisers here:
http://um.dk/en/about-us/organisation/contact-information

France – Sarah Katz
www.facebook.com/FlottilleGazaFrance
www.plateforme-palestine.org or www.france-palestine.org
Ecrire à Présidence de la République:
Francois-Xavier Lauch: francois-xavier.lauch@elysee.fr et
Ahlem Gharbi: ahlem.gharbi@elysee.fr
Ministère des Affaires étrangères – olivier.decottignies@diplomatie.gouv.fr et chloe.baudreux@diplomatie.gouv.fr
Ministère de l’Intérieur: stephane fratacci stephane.fratacci@interieur.gouv.fr

Malaysia – Dr Mohd Afandi Salleh
The Hon. Dato’ Saifuddin Bin Abdullah – Minister of Foreign Affairs
Tel: +603 8887 (Ext : 4503)
Email: saifuddin@kln.gov.my

New Zealand – Mike Treen
Rt Hon Winston Peters – Minister of Foreign Affairs
Tel: +64 4 439 8000
More information from our partner: kiaoragaza.net

Norway – Arne Birger Heli, Gerd von der Lippe, Herman Reksten, Jan petter Hammervold, Jørgen Pederson
Foreign minister – Ine Eriksen Søreide
Email: post@mfa.no
Tel: +47 2395 0000

Singapore – Jason Soo
Minister for Foreign Affairs – Dr Vivian BALAKRISHNAN
Email: v.bala@mfa.gov.sg and mfa@mfa.sg
Tel: 1800 4768870 or +65 63798000 or +65 6379 8855
Fax: +65 6474 7885
http://www.mfa.gov.sg

Spain – Emilia Nacher, Lucía Mazarrasa
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Web: www.exteriores.gob.es/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Exteriores.maec/
Twitter: @SpainMFA
Spanish Embassy in Tel Aviv
Twitter: @EmbEspTelAviv

Sweden – Charles Andreasson, Divina Levrini
Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden Prime minister’s office: Email: statsradsberedningen.registrator@regeringskansliet.se
Margot Wallström, Foreign Minister of Sweden Foreign Minister’s office
Email: utrikesdepartementet.registrator@regeringskansliet.se Press secretaries: Erik Wirkensjö +46 8405 1000 / +46 70317 6471
Tel: erik.wirkensjo@gov.se
Pezhman Fivrin
Tel: +46 8405 5361
Email: pezhman.fivrin@gov.se
Jonas Sjöstedt, leader of the Left party in Sweden
Email: jonas.sjostedt@riksdagen.se
Jessica Nordh, press secretary
+46 7307 62290 / +46 7062 00064

UK – Swee Chai Khoo (Dr Swee Ang)
Jeremy Hunt MP – Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Tel: 01428 609416, +44 20 7008 1500
Email: fcocorrespondence@fco.gov.uk, huntj@parliament.uk
@Jeremy_Hunt
Alistair Burt MP – Minister of State for the Middle East at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office
Tel: +44 207 219 8132
Email: alistair.burt.mp@parliament.uk
Jeremy Corbyn MP – Opposition Leader
leader@labour.org.uk
@JeremyCorbynMP
Emily Thornberry MP – Shadow Foreign Secretary
Email: emily.thornberry.mp@parliament.uk

US – Joe Meadors
Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State
Tel: +1 202 647 4000
Email: pompeom@state.gov
Website: http://state.gov
Twitter: @SecPompeo @StateDept

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Posted by Teri Perticone

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