Israel Navy ships turn back “Spirit of Humanity” carrying Gaza humanitarian aid

January 15 2009

Israel Navy ships forced a boat trying to deliver food and medical supplies to Gaza to return to Cyprus early Thursday.

Free Gaza group spokeswoman Mary Hughes-Thompson said Israeli naval vessels surrounded the 66-foot (20-meter) Greek-flagged boat off the coast of southern Lebanon and threatened to open fire if it did not turn back. The Israel Defense Forces said navy ships warned the boat to turn back because it was entering a war zone subject to a naval blockade.

The ship turned back without incident, the military said.  Hughes-Thompson said the boat, carrying five tons of supplies and 21 passengers, including three surgeons, was expected to arrive at Larnaca port in Cyprus by Thursday evening.

It was the second failed bid by the U.S.-based group to try to reach Gaza
since Israel launched its assault on the Palestinian territory late last month in response to rocket fire on Israel.

One of the trip’s organizers, Vangelis Pisias, said the Israeli navy had
threatened to open fire on the Greek-flagged boat Spirit of Humanity, which was carrying the activists.

“They told us that it was forbidden to go to our destination. We replied that we were carrying humanitarian supplies and continued on our course,” Pisias told Greece’s private Antenna television.

“About half an hour later, they returned with a threat, telling us they were obliged to stop the boat with all means possible… They said if we did not stop they would shoot.”

In a statement, Free Gaza said the incident occurred in international waters and described the incident as shocking.

“At roughly 1:00 A.M. GMT, in international waters 100 miles off the coast of Gaza, at least five Israeli gunboats surrounded the Spirit of Humanity and began recklessly cutting in front of the slow-moving civilian craft,” the statement said.

In Athens, the Greek Foreign Ministry said it had sent a strong protest to the Israeli Foreign Ministry that emphasized and asked for the Israeli authorities to pay particular attention to the protection of the lives and security of those on board the boat.

It said protests had also been sent the previous day to the Israeli foreign and defense ministries.

Source

Israel does not own  International Waters.  Seems again they are a bit out of touch with reality. They behaved more like Pirates would.

Law of the High Seas

Article17

Right of innocent passage

Subject to this Convention, ships of all States, whether coastal or land-locked, enjoy the right of innocent passage through the territorial sea.

Article19

Meaning of innocent passage

1. Passage is innocent so long as it is not prejudicial to the peace, good order or security of the coastal State. Such passage shall take place in conformity with this Convention and with other rules of international law.

2. Passage of a foreign ship shall be considered to be prejudicial to the peace, good order or security of the coastal State if in the territorial sea it engages in any of the following activities:

(a) any threat or use of force against the sovereignty, territorial integrity or political independence of the coastal State, or in any other manner in violation of the principles of international law embodied in the Charter of the United Nations;

(b) any exercise or practice with weapons of any kind;

(c) any act aimed at collecting information to the prejudice of the defence or security of the coastal State;

(d) any act of propaganda aimed at affecting the defence or security of the coastal State;

(e) the launching, landing or taking on board of any aircraft;

(f) the launching, landing or taking on board of any military device;

(g) the loading or unloading of any commodity, currency or person contrary to the customs, fiscal, immigration or sanitary laws and regulations of the coastal State;

(h) any act of wilful and serious pollution contrary to this Convention;

(i) any fishing activities;

(j) the carrying out of research or survey activities;

(k) any act aimed at interfering with any systems of communication or any other facilities or installations of the coastal State;

(l) any other activity not having a direct bearing on passage.

Article21

Laws and regulations of the coastal State relating to innocent passage

1. The coastal State may adopt laws and regulations, in conformity with the provisions of this Convention and other rules of international law, relating to innocent passage through the territorial sea, in respect of all or any of the following:

(a) the safety of navigation and the regulation of maritime traffic;

(b) the protection of navigational aids and facilities and other facilities or installations;

(c) the protection of cables and pipelines;

(d) the conservation of the living resources of the sea;

(e) the prevention of infringement of the fisheries laws and regulations of the coastal State;

(f) the preservation of the environment of the coastal State and the prevention, reduction and control of pollution thereof;

(g) marine scientific research and hydrographic surveys;

(h) the prevention of infringement of the customs, fiscal, immigration or sanitary laws and regulations of the coastal State.

Article24

Duties of the coastal State

1. The coastal State shall not hamper the innocent passage of foreign ships through the territorial sea except in accordance with this Convention. In particular, in the application of this Convention or of any laws or regulations adopted in conformity with this Convention, the coastal State shall not:

(a) impose requirements on foreign ships which have the practical effect of denying or impairing the right of innocent passage; or

(b) discriminate in form or in fact against the ships of any State or against ships carrying cargoes to, from or on behalf of any State.

Just a few Excerpts to ponder. The piracy  part is rather interesting as well.

Article300

Good faith and abuse of rights

States Parties shall fulfil in good faith the obligations assumed under this Convention and shall exercise the rights, jurisdiction and freedoms recognized in this Convention in a manner which would not constitute an abuse of right.

Article301

Peaceful uses of the seas

In exercising their rights and performing their duties under this Convention, States Parties shall refrain from any threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the principles of international law embodied in the Charter of the United Nations

Law on the High Seas section Pirates??????


Related

Ship with Medical Aid supplies for Gaza Needs “Your” Help.

In December

Israel ‘rammed’ medical aid boat headed to Gaza

Indexed List of all Stories in Archives

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Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 11:28 pm  Comments Off on Israel Navy ships turn back “Spirit of Humanity” carrying Gaza humanitarian aid  
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Ship with Medical Aid supplies for Gaza Needs “Your” Help.

January 12 2009

Cyprus

The Free Gaza Movement ship, “SPIRIT OF HUMANITY,” left Larnaca Port at 3:00 pm, Monday, 12 January, on an emergency mission to besieged Gaza .

It is expected to arrive in Gaza at approximately 11am (UST) Tuesday morning. Aboard the ship are 36 passengers and crew, representing 17 different nations. They are doctors, journalists, human rights workers, and five European parliamentarians representing Belgium , Greece , Italy , and Spain (see below for a complete passenger list). The mercy ship also carries desperately needed medical supplies meant for hospitals in the Gaza Strip.

This voyage marks Free Gaza’s second attempt to break through the blockade since Israel began attacking Gaza on 27 December. Between August and December 2008, the Free Gaza Movement successfully challenged the Israeli blockade five times, landing the first international ships in the port of Gaza since 1967.

The Israeli military violently attacked an earlier attempt by the Free Gaza Movement to send an emergency boat filled with doctors and medical supplies to Gaza . In the early hours of Tuesday, 30 December, the Israeli navy deliberately, repeatedly, and without warning rammed the unarmed ship, the DIGNITY, causing significant structural damage and endangering the lives of its passengers and crew. The DIGNITY found safe harbor in Lebanon , and is currently awaiting repairs.

Shortly before the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY left Cyprus today, the Cypriot authorities informed the Free Gaza Movement that the Israeli government had officially contacted their embassy in Tel Aviv, and warned them that they felt “justified” in using “any means available” to forcibly prevent the mercy ship from arriving in Gaza. At the request of the ship’s organizers, the Cypriot authorities searched the ship prior to its departure to certify that it only carried medical supplies.

Fouad Ahidar, a member of the Belgian Parliament sailing to Gaza aboard the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY, responded to concerns that Israel may attack the unarmed ship by saying, “I have five children that are very worried about me, but I told them: ‘you can sit on your couch and watch these atrocities on the television, or you can choose to take action to make them stop.'”

Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip have injured thousands of civilians and killed over 900 people, including hundreds of women and children. This ongoing Israeli massacre severely and massively violates international humanitarian law defined by the Geneva Conventions, especially the obligations of an Occupying Power and the requirements of the laws of war.

The United Nations has failed to protect the Palestinian civilian population from Israel ‘s massive violations of international humanitarian law. Israel has closed off Gaza from the international community and demanded that all foreigners leave. But Huwaida Arraf, an organizer with the Free Gaza Movements, stated that, “We cannot just sit by and wait for Israel to decide to stop the killing and open the borders for relief workers to pick up the pieces. We are coming in. There is an urgent need for this mission as Palestinian civilians in Gaza are being terrorized and slaughtered by Israel, and access to humanitarian relief denied to them. When states and the international bodies responsible for taking action to stop such atrocities chose to be impotent, then we–the citizens of the world–must act. Our common humanity demands nothing less.”

Israel has been notified that we are coming. A copy of the notification to the Israeli Authorities is attached. The Free Gaza Movement will hold Israel responsible for any harm that may be done to the ship or its passengers.

###

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Take Action! CALL the Israeli Government and let them know that the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY is coming to Gaza . DEMAND that Israel immediately STOP slaughtering civilians in Gaza and STOP using violence to prevent human rights and humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people.

CALL:

Mark Regev in the Prime Minister’s officeat +972 2670 5354 or +972 5 0620 3264

mark.regev@it.pmo.gov.il

Shlomo Dror in the Ministry of Defence at +972 3697 5339 or +972 50629 8148

mediasar@mod.gov.il

Major Liebovitz from the Israeli Navy:

+ 972 5 781 86248

###

Official Notification of Intent to Enter

January 11, 2009

To: The Israeli Ministry of Defense, Fax: 972-3-697-6717

To: The Israeli Navy

To: The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Fax 972-2-5303367

From: The Free Gaza Movement

This letter serves as a formal notification to you as the Occupying Power and belligerent force in the Gaza Strip that on Monday, January 12 we are navigating the motor vessel, Spirit of Humanity, from the Port of Larnaca to the port of Gaza City. Our vessel will be flying the Greek flag, and, as such, falls under the jurisdiction Greece .

We will be sailing from Cypriot waters into international waters, then directly into the territorial waters of the Gaza Strip without entering or nearing Israeli territorial waters. We expect to arrive at the Gaza Port on Tuesday, January 13, 2009.

We will be carrying urgently needed medical supplies in sealed boxes, cleared by customs at the Larnaca International Airport and the Port of Larnaca . There will be a total of 30 passengers and crew on board, among them members of various European Parliaments and several physicians. Our boat and cargo will also have received security clearance from the Port Authorities in Cyprus before we depart.

As it will be confirmed that neither we, the cargo, any of the boat’s contents, nor the boat itself constitute any threat to the security of Israel or its armed forces, we do not expect any interference with our voyage by Israel ‘s authorities.

On Tuesday, December 30, an Israeli Navy vessel violently, and without warning, attacked our motor vessel Dignity, disabling the vessel and endangering the lives of the 16 civilians on board. This notice serves as clear notification to you of our approach. Any attack on the motor vessel, Spirit of Humanity, will be premeditated and any harm inflicted on the 30 civilians on board will be considered the result of a deliberate attack on unarmed civilians.

The Steering Committee of the Free Gaza Movement

###

PASSENGERS & CREW OF THE SPIRIT OF HUMANITY

– Abufalah, Othman Mohammad, Journalist with Al Jazeera Television ( Jordan )

– Ahidar, Fouad, Member of Parliament ( Belgium )

– Arraf, Huwaida, human rights lawyer and Delegation Leader (Palestine/USA)

– Bitsanis, Konstantinos, human rights worker and crew ( Greece )

– Bolos, Nikolas, human rights worker and crew ( Greece )

– Bowden, David, Journalist with SKY TV ( UK )

– Caruso, Francesco, former Member of Parliament ( Italy )

– Dabbagh, Ali, Doctor ( UK )

– Dritsas, Theodoros, Member of Parliament ( Greece )

– Gentile, Alessandro, Journalist with CNN ( Italy )

– Gezelius, Mats, Journalist (Sweden/Finland)

– Giannopolis, Nikolaos, human rights worker ( Greece )

– Jacquier, Gilles, Journalist with France Channel 2 ( France )

– Kampani, Chalent, Orthopedic Surgeon ( Greece )

– Kanellakis, Yiannis, Journalist with Greek Mega TV ( Greece )

– Karatzias, Petros, Journalist with the Associated Press ( Cyprus )

– Kawkuby, Jasir, Doctor and Pediatric Intensive Care specialist ( Germany )

– Klontzas, George, Ship’s Captain ( Greece )

– Muncie , Andrew, human rights worker and crew ( Scotland )

– McLuckie, Garwen, Journalist with SKY TV ( UK )

– Mourad, Maimouni ( Belgium )

– Muir, Alistair, Journalist with the BBC ( UK )

– Nuet, Joan Josef, Member of Parliament ( Spain )

– Papachristopoulos, Athanasios, Surgeon ( Greece )

– Pissias, Vangelis, Univeristy Professor ( Greece )

– Pratt, David, Journalist with the Sunday Herald ( UK )

– Prieto, Monica, Journalist with El Mundo ( Spain )

– Rahali, Hassan, Journalist ( Belgium )

– Robbins, Sonia, Surgeon ( UK )

– Sakorafa, Sofia, Member of Parliament ( Greece )

– Shakir, Thair, Journalist with Al Jazeera television ( Iraq )

– Synodynou, Melina, Journalist with Ethnos ( Greece )

– Tsatsis, Angelos, Journalist with MEGA TV ( Greece )

– Vinci, Alessio, Journalist with CNN ( Italy )

– Yvon, Xavier, Journalist with RTL Radio ( France )

– Zdoukos, Theodoros, Doctor ( Greece )

Source

In December Israel ‘rammed’ medical aid boat headed to Gaza

This one must get through. Israel is continually committing violations on human rights and their war crimes are adding up. They need to be told clearly this ship must get through.

They have no right to stop the “SPIRIT OF HUMANITY” .

Only a terrorist state would do all the horrendous atrocities they have.

Voice your opinion. Break the sound barrier, if you must, but do everything thing you can to get this ship through.

Fax, Phone ,E-mail. Sit on their doorstep if you must but do everything possible to assure this much need Medical Aid gets through. Is there a government out there that will give this ship a ” Police Escort”.

How about every country on the Planet.

Give them a  “Police Escort”.

Get “Your Politicians”, to “Call those in Israel” and make it perfectly clear this ship, is to be let through. Would they ram this one to sure they would. The have blown up hospitals, UN schools, medical clinics, homes, places of worship, homes, and anything else they can think of.

They even Kill those who work for the UN. They kill children, men woman, anyone they feel like. The prevented the Red Cross from getting to injured victims for 4 days. They Herded over a 100 people into a house and then shelled it. Their intent was mass murder. Then they proceed to lie to all of us as to why they did it. They are a rogue state,  a terrorist state, war criminals,  and should be treated as such. They are polluting the area for thousands of miles around with Toxic slop that will kill future generations for years to come. The aftermath will be horrifying.

They are not to be trusted. They have proved “beyond a shadow of a doubt” they are criminals. We the people of the world are the jury.

I find them guilty as charged.  What about you?

With “evidence” I have before me, I find them “guilty of all the crimes ” and those responsible should be “jailed for life”. No parole ever.

That is what you do to murderers is it not?

They are just as guilty as the “Hitler Regime”.

Let them know the World is Watching them.

If any ship should be stopped from Getting anywhere, it would be this one.  US delivering more “Weapons of Mass Destruction” to Israel

Israel Violating Egyptian Airspace to attack Gaza

Israel continues to attack Hospitals, Clinics and Public Buildings in Gaza

UK firm blasted for arming Israeli military

79 % of the time: Israel caused conflicts not Hamas

Israel Violating Egyptian Airspace to attack Gaza

Israel continues to attack Hospitals, Clinics and Public Buildings in Gaza

UK firm blasted for arming Israeli military

Embargo against Israel: Spreading Willingness in the Middle East

Gaza (1): A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

Indexed List of all Stories in Archives

Published in: on January 13, 2009 at 12:54 am  Comments Off on Ship with Medical Aid supplies for Gaza Needs “Your” Help.  
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An Open Letter From Jewish Youth in Canada – Support of Gaza

January 5, 2009
Diverse voices oppose apartheid policies, zionism

The Dominion

Supporters of Israel stage a counter-demonstration at a rally against Israel’s bombing of Gaza. Some Jewish youth call the state’s activities “apartheid” and call for an end to the occupation and exclusionary policies within Israel. Photo: Elise von Kulmiz

January 5th, 2009

Like much of the world, we have spent the last week watching in shock and disgust as Israel continues its assault on the Gaza Strip. With the body count rising and a new tragedy in full bloom, we feel that it is important to speak out as Jewish youth in Canada and to denounce what Israel is doing in our name. The Jewish diaspora is diverse and divided on its positions on the state of Israel’s policies. At this juncture in history, as Israel has committed its worst massacre in Gaza since it began its illegal occupation in 1967, we feel that it is crucial that Jews speak out and denounce Israel’s actions that amount to no more than war crimes committed by an apartheid state.

As Jewish youth, we are diverse, but we are unified in our solidarity with our Palestinian brothers and sisters in Gaza.

Some of us are students. We are outraged by the bombing of the Islamic University in Gaza city, as well as other civilian infrastructure such as hospitals and mosques.

Some of us are Arab-Jews and people of colour. We stand against Israel’s racism, which has been enshrined in Israeli law, and privileges its Jewish citizens over its non-Jewish ones. This apartheid state views Palestinians as an expendable people, no more than collateral damage.

Some of us are queer. We reject Israel’s branding of itself as the only safe place for queer people in the Middle-East while it targets gay and lesbian Palestinians and renders life unsafe for millions of others.

Some of us are Israelis living in Canada. We are calling for a solidarity that stretches beyond borders and nationalities. Israel’s violent actions will only serve to further isolate the state and its citizens from the rest of the world. By calling itself a Jewish state and committing war crimes in the name of Jews everywhere, Israel makes the world even less safe for Jews, leading to an increase in animus towards Jewish people around the world.

A Jewish protester stands with Palestinian supporters at a rally against Israel’s bombing of Gaza in Toronto. Photo: Elise von Kulmiz

Even though there have been approximately 100 Palestinian deaths for every Israeli killed by rocket fire, we recognize that Israeli Apartheid also leads to Israeli casualties. The blame for these deaths lies with Israel – if there were no occupation and no apartheid policies, there would be no rocket fire. If Israel, the world’s fourth largest military power, is concerned about its citizens, it would abandon its apartheid policies and seek out justice for the Palestinian people.

In 2005, Palestinian civil society put out a clear call for international support through a non-violent campaign of Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) similar to that carried out against the apartheid regime of South Africa. Now, with the people of Gaza being crushed by Israeli bombs, manufactured in the USA and launched with Canada’s blessing, it is more important than ever for Jewish communities throughout the world to take up this BDS campaign in order to end Israel’s apartheid system, which makes life unsafe for millions of Jews and Palestinians alike.

Let us not be silent bystanders while humanity suffers. Let us raise our voices, as Jewish youth, and demand a single, democratic state, with equal rights for everyone in Israel/Palestine.

Ours is a generation that is committed to ending Middle-East violence by opposing all forms of discrimination, calling for a just peace within the entire region, and condemning Zionism to the dustbin of history.

Free Gaza, Free Palestine,

If you wish to see the signers go to the Source

To sign on to this letter, send an email to antizionistjews@gmail.com with your name and city.

Source

There is much “wisdom” in the words these children are saying.

Many adults  could learn from these children. Seems the children are well informed and are not blind to the actual realities of what has been happening.

Through the eyes of a “Child” will we see the “Light”.

A Child’s Cry

Can you imagine how I see life?

Can you understand what it feels like?

Can you know the agony?

Can you know how often I cry?

Is it so much to want to be happy?

Is it so much to want peace?

Is it so much to ask for love?

Is it so much trouble?

My friends have died.

My life is hopeless.

My relatives are sick.

My home is gone.

I am just a little kid.

I am so scared.

I am not who you think I am.

I am not bad.

Can you imagine how I feel?

Can you understand what I say?

Can you now see why I need help?

Can I tell you I am afraid? I am.

Is it so hard for you to understand?

Is it that I am different?

Is it my religion?

Is it I don’t count?

My memories scare me.

My thoughts are all sad.

My future is short.

My mother always has tears in her eyes.

I am just a little kid.

I am dying.

I am not who you think I am.

I am only kid.

Can you stop the bombs from coming down?

Can you stop the guns?

Can you help my mommy stop crying?

Can you take care of my friends?

It is hard to leave them knowing they are so sad.

It is not my fault.

It is not me who started this.

It is not easy to be a kid sometimes.

50 Palestinian killed in  the first day of Israel's ground offen



Published in: on January 6, 2009 at 5:25 am  Comments Off on An Open Letter From Jewish Youth in Canada – Support of Gaza  
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