500 Civil Activists from Asia Will March to Gaza Against Siege
New Delhi: About 500 civil rights activists from 17 Asian countries will march to Palestine to press Israel to end the siege of Gaza. The activists will gather in New Delhi on December 1 and proceed to Gaza. The march is being organized by Asian People’s Solidarity for Palestine.
The group announced the schedule of the march in a press conference on October 5 in Delhi with similar press conferences on the same day in four other countries Turkey, Iran, Indonesia and Lebanon. According to the release, 500 civil resisters from 17 Asian countries will join the caravan from India and march through 18 Asian cities of Pakistan, Iran, and Turkey to break the siege of Gaza through the sea route in December 2010.
“This struggle is broad, varied and multi-dimensional. It is humanitarian and for peace, freedom and human dignity. It is against occupation, imperialism, apartheid, Zionism and all forms of discrimination including religious discrimination,” the group said.
Their major demands include Palestinian Self-Determination; Ending the Occupation; Equal Rights for All within historic Palestine; the Right of Return for Palestinian refugees; and Establishment of a Sovereign, Independent and Democratic state of Palestine with Jerusalem as the capital.
The Caravan will be carrying relief materials for the people of Gaza. The Asia to Gaza Caravan will cross into Pakistan via Wagah border where the Pakistan Solidarity for Gaza groups will host a civic reception for the caravan and Pakistani civil resisters will join the Caravan onwards to Iran. In every country and city, welcome committees will host receptions and public meetings with mass organisations and civil resisters will join the caravan. The caravan will culminate in 500 civil resisters boarding a ship from a Mediterranean port to sail to Gaza to break the illegal Israeli siege.
According to the release, the march has been endorsed by various organizations and individuals including All India Students Association (AISA), Aman Bharat, Asha Parivar, Awami Bharat, Global Gandhi Forum, JamiatUlema-I-Hind and Jamaat-e-Islami-Hind. The individuals include Achin Vanaik, Agdish Nagarkar, Anand Grover, Anand Patwardhan, Shabnam Hashmi, Shahid Siddiqui and Medha Patkar.