Branch Meeting: 16th September

When: Thursday, 16th September, 7:30pm-9pm.

Where: Nelson Hall Community Centre, 5 Spittalfield Crescent, Edinburgh, EH8 9QZ (corner of St Leonard’s Street and Bernard Terrace).  (Click the image above to enlarge).

Subject: Palestine.

Additional Information:  If you have any questions, or want to attend this or a future meeting, you can get in touch with us at EdinburghSouthSSP@googlemail.com

SSP Marches for a Free Gaza

Photo by Eddie Truman

SSP members from across Scotland joined 5,000 others in Edinburgh today to march along Princes Street against the Israeli blockade of Gaza and the brutal enforcement that was brought to the world’s attention last Monday when 57 peace activists were shot,  9 of whom lost their lives (5 were shot in the back or the back of the head).  The march made stops at the American consulate, Alex Salmond’s residence, and Marks and Spencers (a key target of the boycott campaign), in order to put pressure on the international community to finally take action.

The blockade of Gaza, illegal under international law, has cut the amount of humanitarian aid getting into the area by 75% and destroyed the local economy — especially farming.  This in turn has left most Gazans dependent on international aid and nine out of ten living below the poverty line of $1 a day.  The UN has called the blockade ‘medieval’, and found that only a third of the aid necessary to feed the population is allowed in.

Among the ‘dangerous’ products banned from entering Gaza are fabric, dried fruit, and any construction materials, meaning that the homes, hospitals and schools destroyed by Israeli bombing cannot be rebuilt.

You can see SSP National Co-Spokesperson Colin Fox’s statement by clicking here.

SSP condemns unreservedly the murder of 19 aid workers by Israeli forces

SSP members join the protest in Edinburgh

SSP members joined protests across Scotland on Monday afternoon, to register their anger at the Israeli military’s attack on a convoy carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza — an attack which killed up to 19 aid workers.

Israel is currently blockading Gaza, allowing only 15,000 tonnes of humanitarian aid in a week, less than a quarter of the over 60,000 tonnes needed according to the UN.  And on top of this it has banned the materials essential to rebuilding destroyed homes, schools and hospitals.  The convoy was carrying 10,000 tonnes of humanitarian aid, and included an international contingent of MPs, journalists, academics and campaigners in a failed bid to ensure its protection.

The ship was attacked in international waters, 69 nautical miles from Israel, when commandos landed from helicopters carrying live ammunition.

The official SSP press release is below.

Originally posted on the SSP National website.

The naked aggression against the people of Gaza by the Israeli state has been exposed once again in another despicable, murderous act against unarmed people. The unprovoked attack on the peace and humanitarian aid convoy in international waters is akin to the anti racism attacks on activists in the southern states of America in the 1960’s and the shooting of peaceful protesters in Sharpeville, South Africa in 1960.

The Scottish Socialist Party stands shoulder to shoulder with the flotilla activists and the Palestinian people and we call on the UK and Scottish Governments to condemn the heinous crime of the Israeli Government immediately.

We call for a boycott of Israeli goods and international sanctions on the Israeli state. The UN must show leadership of the international community and initiate action rather than the stream of empty words it has issued over the years.

The UK Government also needs to initiate an enquiry at the BBC reaction to the flotilla and the attack. The BBC is reported to have refused to give coverage of the flotilla and on the morning of the attack was only reporting the words of Israeli spokespeople. This seeming BBC policy towards reporting on Gaza recalls a refusal to broadcast a charity appeal for aid to Gaza in January 2009.

The SSP calls for an immediate end to the Israeli blockade of Gaza and for justice for the Palestinian people.