Cynthia McKinney Reportedly Taken Captive By Israeli Navy

(GreenPartyWatch)   The latest from www.freegaza.org reports that the humanitarian vessel Spirit of Humanity has been attacked and boarded by the Israelis 23 miles off the coast of Gaza. Former US Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney is among the 21 human rights workers taken prisoner off the ship.

June 30th, 2009 by Ronald Hardy · 21 Comments

The latest from www.freegaza.org reports that the humanitarian vessel Spirit of Humanity has been attacked and boarded by the Israelis 23 miles off the coast of Gaza. Former US Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney is among the 21 human rights workers taken prisoner off the ship.

[23 miles off the coast of Gaza, 15:30pm] – Today Israeli Occupation Forces attacked and boarded the Free Gaza Movement boat, the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY, abducting 21 human rights workers from 11 countries, including Noble laureate Mairead Maguire and former U.S. Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (see below for a complete list of passengers). The passengers and crew are being forcibly dragged toward Israel.

“This is an outrageous violation of international law against us. Our boat was not in Israeli waters, and we were on a human rights mission to the Gaza Strip,” said Cynthia McKinney, a former U.S. Congresswoman and presidential candidate. “President Obama just told Israel to let in humanitarian and reconstruction supplies, and that’s exactly what we tried to do. We’re asking the international community to demand our release so we can resume our journey.”

According to an International Committee of the Red Cross report released yesterday, the Palestinians living in Gaza are “trapped in despair.” Thousands of Gazans whose homes were destroyed earlier during Israel’s December/January massacre are still without shelter despite pledges of almost $4.5 billion in aid, because Israel refuses to allow cement and other building material into the Gaza Strip. The report also notes that hospitals are struggling to meet the needs of their patients due to Israel’s disruption of medical supplies.

“The aid we were carrying is a symbol of hope for the people of Gaza, hope that the sea route would open for them, and they would be able to transport their own materials to begin to reconstruct the schools, hospitals and thousands of homes destroyed during the onslaught of “Cast Lead”. Our mission is a gesture to the people of Gaza that we stand by them and that they are not alone” said fellow passenger Mairead Maguire, winner of a Noble Peace Prize for her work in Northern Ireland.

Just before being kidnapped by Israel, Huwaida Arraf, Free Gaza Movement chairperson and delegation co-coordinator on this voyage, stated that: “No one could possibly believe that our small boat constitutes any sort of threat to Israel. We carry medical and reconstruction supplies, and children’s toys. Our passengers include a Nobel peace prize laureate and a former U.S. congressperson. Our boat was searched and received a security clearance by Cypriot Port Authorities before we departed, and at no time did we ever approach Israeli waters.”

Arraf continued, “Israel’s deliberate and premeditated attack on our unarmed boat is a clear violation of international law and we demand our immediate and unconditional release.”

For more information contact:
Greta Berlin (English)
tel: +357 99 081 767 / friends@freegaza.org This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Caoimhe Butterly (Arabic/English/Spanish):
tel: +357 99 077 820 / sahara78@hotmail.co.uk This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.FreeGaza.org

June 30th, 2009 by Ronald Hardy · 21 Comments

Tags: Peace & Non-Violence · Social & Economic Justice

21 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Haithem El-Zabri // Jun 30, 2009 at 9:31 am

    WHAT YOU CAN DO!

    CONTACT the Israeli Ministry of Justice
    tel: +972 2646 6666 or +972 2646 6340
    fax: +972 2646 6357

    CONTACT the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs
    tel: +972 2530 3111
    fax: +972 2530 3367

    CONTACT Mark Regev in the Prime Minister’s office at:
    tel: +972 5 0620 3264 or +972 2670 5354
    mark.regev@it.pmo.gov.il

    CONTACT the International Committee of the Red Cross to ask for their assistance in establishing the wellbeing of the kidnapped human rights workers and help in securing their immediate release!

    Red Cross Israel
    tel: +972 3524 5286
    fax: +972 3527 0370
    tel_aviv.tel@icrc.org

    Red Cross Switzerland:
    tel: +41 22 730 3443
    fax: +41 22 734 8280

    Red Cross USA:
    tel: +1 212 599 6021
    fax: +1 212 599 6009

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