June 1, 2010

An Open Letter to Stephen Harper from the Communist Party of British Columbia

The B.C. Committee of the Communist Party of Canada joins with people across the world in condemning the acts of piracy and murder committed on May 31 in international waters against the Gaza Freedom Flotilla by the Israeli government. The outrageous military attack against peace activists bringing humanitarian aid to the imprisoned people of Gaza has rightly met with a storm of international condemnation.

The courageous Freedom Flotilla activists were carrying baby food, clothing, medicines, building materials and other supplies desperately needed by the people of Gaza, who suffer under a vicious blockade intended to starve the Palestinians into submission. On board the Flotilla were members of Parliament, Nobel peace prize winners, and peace activists from all walks of life. Among them is Victoria resident Kevin Neish, well known to British Columbians as a long-time participant in many campaigns for peace, human rights and international solidarity. The attempts by anti-Palestinian groups to slander Kevin Neish are utterly pathetic, considering his outstanding record of principled commitment to defending the rights of oppressed peoples.

The overwhelming reaction by Canadians is to call the Israeli attack on the Freedom Flotilla an act of war. Yet the Harper federal government, which was hosting Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu when this attack took place, has responded by calling for “investigations” to allow the state of Israel to buy time to evade international criticism. We join with others in demanding that PM Harper condemn this war crime, and use his position to press for the immediate release of Canadian citizen Kevin Neish and all imprisoned members of the Flotilla.

Canada must end its genocidal policy of complete support for the Israeli blockade of Gaza, in favour of support for a genuine political solution to the ongoing crisis. Such a new policy must be based on the implementation of all relevant U.N. resolutions, including Israel’s complete withdrawal from all lands it has illegally occupied since the 1967 war; the dismantling of the Apartheid wall and removal of all Israeli settlements; the formation of a viable and genuinely independent Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital; the guaranteed right of Palestinians to return to their homelands; the certifiable de-nuclearization of Israel, and mutual security guarantees for all states in the region. Until such basic justice is achieved for the Palestinian people, the Communist Party will continue to support the international campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel.

Sam Hammond, Provincial Secretary


Telephone 604-254-9836 cpbc@telus.net

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