Friday 19 April 2024

Solidarity brings hope amidst the war crimes and genocide in Gaza and West Bank

Husam Zomlot
#STUC24 Tuesday saw an extremely powerful session on Gaza and Palestine. We heard from Husam Zomlot, Palestinian ambassador to the UK and Shaher Saed, General Secretary of the PGFTU.

Husam Zomlot gave the long history of the oppression and occupation of the Palestinians by Israel over many years and the UK’s complicity.

Both railed unbelievingly against the failure of the US, the UK and other western governments to act in support of Gaza despite the daily evidence of slaughter, famine and genocide.

Both described the impact of 193 days of bombardment and the withholding of humanitarian aid by Israel; the murders of over 33,000 civilians - many more missing under the rubble of homes, hospitals, schools, mosques, churches, universities, museums, trade union buildings. The entire infrastructure razed to the ground. The murders of entire families, over 14,000 children, health care workers, aid workers, journalists - all war crimes.

Shaher Saed
They reminded us that the International Court of Justice has found a plausible case that Israel is committing genocide yet still most western countries do nothing and continue to provide arms to Israel

But both also saw hope because of the collective actions of ordinary people here and around the world, standing together in solidarity with the people of Gaza and the West Bank, including the unions and TU councils gathered here today. And because of the resilience of the Palestinian people.

Movingly, Shaher Saed pledged that the people of Palestine were going nowhere….”we will never leave.. this is our land and we will resist and rebuild..”

The debate afterwards saw motions remitted in favour of a comprehensive and hard hitting General Council statement on Palestine.