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Gaza: A two-year siege
by Yacov I. Claude
2009-06-17 09:08:33
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One more murderous clash on the Gaza border, this past Monday, reminding us how explosive the situation remains there. 4 killed, 12 wounded among the Palestinians, no losses on the Israeli side. Inside the Strip, out of a list of 4,000 « authorized items » (established before the siege imposed in June 2007), 30 to 40 only are admitted today, and one and a half million people still remain trapped, submitted to the most arbitrary extremes.

Books, records, clothes, fabrics, shoes, needles, light-bulbs, candles, matches, musical instruments, sheets, blankets, mattresses, cups, glasses… are prohibited and can only get in through the fragile tunnels to Egypt, frequently targeted by bombers. In 2008, more than fifty people died inside these tunnels, from collapse of the earth on them. None of the materials necessary for reconstruction (cement, doors, windows…) are allowed either, after the devastating bombings of December 2008-January 2009. Tea, coffee, semolina remain prohibited (cf. Amira Hass’s article in Haaretz, May 17, 2009, “Israel bans books, music and clothes from entering Gaza”).

56 Nobel Laureates, including 10 Peace Laureates, 202 Members of the European Parliament (2004-2009), notable personalities, with the n.g.o. Peace Lines, are engaged in the Open the Doors Campaign for the final end of the Gaza siege and a series of liberations according to humanitarian and legal criteria.

We ask all political leaders and members of the new European legislature to do everything in their power to obtain these liberations – among them Sergeant Shalit and former Minister of Education Al Shaer, re-arrested on March 19th, in conditions contrary to international laws.

Europe and the Union for the Mediterranean cannot continue to tolerate such conditions of deprivation and suffocation at their door.


Open the Doors Campaign

Israel must end the Gaza blockade, end all killings, and enable Gaza to open to the world, so as to guarantee the possibility of a viable economy, and improve the humanitarian situation.

The Palestinians must end all rocket attacks against Israel and the Israelis.

Human beings are not bargaining chips.

Accordingly : the Palestinians must free Sergeant Gilad Shalit, whom they have held prisoner for almost three years now.

The Israelis, who hold more than ten thousand Palestinian prisoners in their jails, must urgently release a significant group of women prisoners, sick persons, the eldest and longest-serving among them, along with those held under administrative detention and other arbitrary procedures – including all the elected members of Palestinian legislature.

Supported by :

56 Nobel Laureates

Peace Nobel Laureates : Bishop Carlos Belo, the Dalaï Lama, Shirin Ebadi, John Hume, Mairead Maguire, Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Cora Weiss (UN Representative for IPB), Betty Williams, Jody Williams

Chemistry Nobel Laureates : Peter Agre, Paul Berg, Thomas Cech, Elias Corey, Robert Curl, Johann Deisenhofer, Manfred Eigen, Richard Ernst, John Fenn, Herbert Hauptman, Alan Heeger, Dudley Herschbach, Roald Hoffmann, Robert Huber, Sir Harold Kroto, Yuan T. Lee, William Lipscomb, Jens Skou

Medicine Nobel Laureates : Baruj Benacerraf, Günter Blobel, Arvid Carlsson, Christian de Duve, Martin Evans, Edmond Fischer, Roger Guillemin, Louis Ignarro, Erwin Neher, Marshall Nirenberg, Paul Nurse, Richard Roberts, E. Donnall Thomas, Torsten Wiesel

Physics Nobel Laureates : Zhores Alferov, Albert Fert, Donald Glaser, John Hall, Brian Josephson, Tony Leggett, Jack Steinberger, Gerardus ‘t Hooft, Daniel Tsui, Martinus Veltman

Literature Nobel Laureates : Dario Fo, Elfriede Jelinek, Wole Soyinka

Economics Nobel Laureate : James Mirrlees

202 Members of European Parliament

Kader Arif, Catherine Boursier, Françoise Castex, Madeleine Jouye de Grandmaison, Harlem Désir, Hélène Flautre, Nicole Fontaine (former President of the European Parliament), Jean-Paul Gauzès, Marie Anne Isler Béguin, Anne Laperrouze, Alain Lipietz, General Philippe Morillon, Elisabeth Morin, Gérard Onesta (Vice President of the EP), Béatrice Patrie, Martine Roure, Tokia Saïfi, Margie Sudre, Bernadette Vergnaud, Francis Wurtz (France)

Alexander Alvaro, Angelika Beer, Hildrud Breyer, André Brie, Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Michael Cramer, Evelyne Gebhardt, Rebecca Harms, Milan Horáček, Gisela Kallenbach, Jo Leinen, Helmut Markov, Cem Özdemir, Tobias Pflüger, Horst Posdorf, Heide Rühle, Frithjof Schmidt, Feleknas Uca, Sahra Wagenknecht, Gabriele Zimmer (Germany)

Christopher Beazley, John Bowis, Sharon Bowles, Chris Davies, Bairbre de Brún, Andrew Duff, Jill Evans, Malcolm Harbour, Sajjad Karim, Jean Lambert, Caroline Lucas, Elizabeth Lynne, David Martin, Linda McAvan, Claude Moraes, Bill Newton Dunn, John Purvis, Alyn Smith, Diana Wallis (Vice President of the EP) (UK)

Ivo Belet, Frieda Brepoels, Philippe Busquin, Giovanna Corda, Jean-Luc Dehaene, Véronique de Keyser (Head of the Observers' Mission for Legislative Elections in Palestine & Vice President of the Work Task on the Middle-East), Gérard Deprez, Mia de Vits (Quaestor), Saïd El Khadraoui, Mathieu Grosch, Alain Hutchinson, Pierre Jonckheer, Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, Bart Staes, Dirk Sterckx, Johan Van Hecke, Anne Van Lancker (Belgium)

Maria Badia i Cutchet, Barbara Dührkop Dührkop, Josep Borrell Fontelles, Juan Fraile Cantón, Vicente Miguel Garcés Ramón, Martí Grau i Segú, Ignasi Guardans Cambó, David Hammerstein, Mikel Irujo Amezaga, Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez (Vice President of the EP), Emilio Menéndez del Valle, Willy Meyer Pleite, Raül Romeva i Rueda (Spain)

Liam Aylward, Colm Burke, Brian Crowley, Proinsias de Rossa, Avril Doyle, Marian Harkin, Jim Higgins, Mary Lou McDonald, Mairead McGuinness, Gay Mitchell, Sean O Neachtain, Eoin Ryan, Kathy Sinnott (Ireland)

Vittorio Agnoletto, Giuletto Chiesa, Fabio Ciani, Luigi Cocilovo (Vice President of the EP), Monica Frassoni, Donata Gottardi, Umberto Guidoni (astronaut), Sepp Kusstatscher, Luisa Morgantini (Vice President of the EP), Pasqualina Napoletano, Vittorio Prodi (Italy)

Jan Andersson, Göran Färm, Hélène Goudin, Anna Hedh, Jens Holm, Maria Robsahm, Carl Schlyter, Inger Segelström, Eva-Britt Svensson, Åsa Westlund, Anders Wijkman (Sweden)

Emine Bozkurt, Dorette Corbey, Jan Cremers, Elly de Groen, Lily Jacobs, Joost Lagendijk, Kartika Tamara Liotard, Jules Maaten, Erik Meijer, Jan Marinus Wiersma (Netherlands)  

Laima Liucija Andrikienė, Arūnas Degutis, Jolanta Dičkuté, Gintaras Didžiokas, Eugenijus Gentvilas, Vytautas Landsbergis, Eugenijus Maldeikis, Justas Vincas Paleckis, Aloyzas Sakalas (Lithuania)

Richard Falbr, Věra Flasarová, Jaromir Kohliček, Jiri Mastalka, Miloslav Ransdorf, Vladimir Remek, Daniel Strož, Tomas Zatloukal, Jaroslav Zvěřina (Czech Republic)

Maria da Assunção Esteves, Edite Estrela, Armando França, Ana Maria Gomes, Ilda Figueiredo, Jamila Madeira, Miguel Portas (Portugal)

Costas Botopoulos, Giorgios Dimitrakopoulos, Dimitris Papadimoulis, Antonios Trakatellis, Nikolaos Vakalis, Ioannis Varvitsiotis (Greece)

Adamos Adamou, Panayiotis Demetriou, Ioannis Kasoulides, Marios Matsakis, Yiannakis Matsis, Kyriacos Triantaphyllides (President, Delegation for Relations with the Palestinian Parliament) (Cyprus)

Adam Gierek, Urszula Krupa, Wiesław Stefan Kuc, Leopold Rutowicz, Tadeusz Zwiefka (Poland)

Cristian Silviu Busoi, Gabriela Creţu, Magor Imre Csibi, Renate Weber (Romania)

Satu Hassi, Piia-Noora Kauppi, Reino Paasilinna, Sirpa Pietikäinen (Finland)

Mihael Brejc, Jelko Kacin, Mojca Drčar Murko, Alojz Peterle (Slovenia)

Margrete Auken, Johannes Lebech, Soren Sondergaard (Denmark)

Guntars Krasts (former Prime Minister of Latvia), Tatjana Zdanoka (Latvia)

Erna Hennicot-Schoepges, Claude Turmes (Luxembourg)

Harald Ettl, Karin Resetarits (Austria)

Mariela Velichkova Baeva (Bulgaria)

Magda Kósáné Kovács (Hungary)

Árpád Duka-Zólyomi (Slovakia)

Toomas Savi (Estonia)

Louis Grech (Malta)

Yasmina Khadra, Franca Rame, Noam Chomsky, Martin Gray (survivor of the Warsaw Ghetto), David Grossman, Amos Oz, Michel Rocard (former Prime Minister)
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