We are urging everyone to raise money for either Middle East Children's Alliance (MECA) or any of our supporting organisations.
Dr. Mona El-Farra
Vice President of the Red Crescent society for the Gaza Strp
Gaza Director of Middle Eastern Children Alliance
“With every mile you ride, you are protesting against 68 years of Israeli ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.
You are sending a message to the Palestinian people in general and to the people of the Gaza strip in particular that they are not abandoned; you are bringing hope to millions of Palestine children for whom life has been scarred by trauma and fear. You are siding with millions of displaced 1948 Palestinian refugees who still have the keys to their homes from which they were uprooted by force.
You are breaking barriers that separate human beings who should be equal regardless of race, colour or religion. We dream of a day when we can welcome you to cycle in free Palestine to enjoy the beauty of our country that has been devastated by long decades of Israeli occupation, disposition, and annihilation. We appreciate your solidarity; we salute you all for your humanity.”
Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) is a UK-based organisation working to end the international arms trade. Billions of pounds worth of weapons are currently produced in the UK and then shipped all over the world, causing death and destruction wherever they end up. CAAT works to challenge this: we expose the companies that produce weapons, challenge government support for the arms trade, and mobilise ordinary people to take action. In challenging the arms trade, CAAT's priority is to stop the procurement of arms where they might exacerbate conflict, impact human rights, or undermine democracy.
In 2014 UK weaponry was once again used by Israel in a devastating assault on Gaza. In 51 days, 2,205 Palestinian civilians were killed, 521 of them children. Yet the UK government approved £4 million worth of arms sales to Israel in the four months that followed last year's bombardment of Gaza.
From targeting UK arms companies supplying Israel, putting pressure on the government to introduce a two-way military embargo, to building local campaigns and supporting grassroots action, CAAT is committed to taking every kind of action possible towards ending the UK arms trade with Israel. Join the call for a full two-way military embargo on Israel today, and help us to halt the flow of weapons. You can find out more and join the campaign at www.caat.org.uk
The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) campaigns for peace & justice for Palestinians, in support of international law and human rights & against all racism. Help us to build a new mass anti Apartheid movement for Palestine.
PSC is an independent, non-governmental and non-party political organisation with members from many communities across Britain, and increasingly throughout the world. PSC represents people in Britain from all faiths and political parties, who have come together to work for justice for the Palestinian people. PSC was established to campaign for Palestinian rights, including the right to self-determination and the right of return, and to oppose Israel’s occupation and violations of international law.
PSC is opposed to all forms of racism, including anti-Jewish prejudice and Islamophobia.
Stop the War was founded in September 2001 in the weeks following 9/11, when George W. Bush announced the "war on terror". Stop the War has since been dedicated to preventing and ending the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and elsewhere.
Stop the War opposes the British establishment's disastrous addiction to war and its squandering of public resources on militarism. We have initiated many campaigns around these issues.
We are committed to supporting Palestinian rights, opposing racism and Islamophobia, and to the defence of civil liberties.
Friends of Al-Aqsa is a UK based non-profit making NGO concerned with defending the human rights of Palestinians and protecting the sacred al-Aqsa Sanctuary in Jerusalem. It's supported by various international groups and organisations. Friends of Al-Aqsa was first established in 1997 and now has an international support base.
The following aims and objectives are being pursued using all the available peaceful, legal and democratic means:
(a) Highlighting Human Rights abuses suffered by the Palestinians
(b) Putting pressure on the British government to make Israel respect International Law.
(c) Bringing the Palestinian issue to the attention of those concerned UN Resolutions.
(d) Mobilising international condemnation for Israels apartheid policies through the boycott of Israel
(e) Educating people on the issue of Palestine through conferences, lectures and publications
(f) Emphasising the significance and the centrality of the al-Aqsa Mosque to the Islamic faith and the Muslim identity and re-affirming the Muslim historic and religious rights to the area
(h) Working in conjunction with international heritage, cultural and humanitarian organisations in joint ventures to advance these aims.
JEWS FOR JUSTICE FOR PALESTINIANS
Lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians requires justice, mutual recognition and respect.
1) Peace requires ending Israel’s illegal occupation and settlement of Palestinian land, including its illegal blockade of Gaza.
2) Peace requires Israel to acknowledge its responsibility in the creation of the Palestinian refugees, and its obligation to negotiate a just, fair and practical resolution of the issue.
3) Violence against civilians, no matter who commits it, is unacceptable.
4) Israel’s repressive policies in the West Bank and Gaza are breeding hatred and resentment. 5) Israel’s discrimination against its Palestinian citizens is unacceptable.
6) It is crucial that Jews speak out for Palestinians’ human rights.
7) The humanitarian values of Judaism have been corrupted by the Israeli state’s abuses of human rights.
8) Britain, the EU, the USA, Russia and the UN must be persuaded to implement UN resolutions on Palestine.
Historic Palestine is located in the Middle East, in a region bordering Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. Muslims, Christians and Jews had lived alongside one another for centuries under the rule of the Ottoman (Turkish) Empire. There were growing calls for Palestinian independence during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries from a population who, in 1914 were 84% Muslim, 11% Christian and 6% Jewish.
During the First World War, Britain pledged to support “complete and final liberation” for the people of the wider region in return for them rebelling against the Ottomans. In fact, they had secretly agreed to divide the area between themselves and France. Britain also promised the “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”. Britain occupied Palestine in 1917 and remained until 1948.
In 1947 Britain approached the newly founded and then Western-dominated UN to determine Palestine’s future. Despite the Jewish population only making up a third of residents, the report recommended creating a Jewish state on 56% of the land. The Palestinians refused to accept the partition of their homeland, yet in 1948 Israel was established unilaterally. By 1949, the Nakba (“catastrophe”) had resulted in the ethnic cleansing of two thirds of the Palestinian population, with Israel ruling over 78% of the land.
The West Bank and Gaza Strip have been under an illegal Israeli military rule since they were occupied in the 1967 war, and today are referred to as the “Occupied Palestinian Territories”. East Jerusalem was also annexed illegally by Israel in 1967. For over 60 years the Palestinians have been denied the right to self-determination and statehood.
The refugee issue
About 800,000 Palestinians were forced into exile in 1948-9 and during the June 1967 war a further 325,000 Palestinians became refugees. Under UN Resolution 194, the Palestinians have the right to return to their homes, but Israel has always refused to implement the Resolution. Today over 6 million Palestinians live as refugees, hundreds of thousands of whom still live in overcrowded refugee camps in the West Bank and Gaza, and in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan.
Life under occupation
The past 40 years have seen the establishment of over 200 illegal Israeli settlements, housing nearly 500,000 settlers, within the Occupied Territories. The ‘separation barrier’ in the West Bank, construction of which was started in 2002, cuts deep into Palestinian land and, along with the “settler only” roads, cuts off many communities from water supplies, hospitals and their agricultural land. The residents face severe travel restrictions and for many it is impossible to enter Jerusalem or to travel abroad. This treatment of the Palestinians, both within Israel and in the Occupied Territories, is widely recognised as a system akin to the Apartheid regime of South Africa.
Palestinians are continually under attack from the Israeli occupying forces and are increasingly harassed by settlers, who attack farmers and steal their land. Collective punishments, such as prolonged curfews and house demolitions are frequently imposed.
The Palestinians who remained in what is today the state of Israel, as non-Jewish members of a Jewish country, also face discrimination in all areas of Palestine and are considered to be second class citizens.
For more information on the historical background and the situation today, you can read the Palestine Solidarity Campaign's factsheets>>