Israel’s Attack on the Flotilla

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2010 National Delegate Conference
15 June 2010

Conference condemns the attack by the Israeli army and navy on the Gaza Freedom flotilla, which was in international waters 90 miles off the coast of Gaza, in which nine people were reportedly killed. We note that these boats were carrying much-needed humanitarian aid for the people of Gaza. We repeat the demand of Conference 2009 for an end to the Israeli blockade of Gaza, which has been in place since 2007.

We note that the passengers on the boats were civilians, including a Nobel Peace Prize winner, a holocaust survivor, parliamentarians, activists, artists and other non-combatants. Israel’s attack, in international waters, appears to be an act of piracy. We call for an independent international enquiry into the circumstances of this attack, and for the criminal prosecution of those committing and ordering these illegal acts.

We support the strong condemnations of Israel issued by Governments around the world, as well as those statements by trade unions, including the TUC and the ITUC.

Conference reaffirms the demands of last years conference and call for an immediate end to all UK arms sales to Israel, and for recognition of the results of the 2006 Palestine election.

We call for the immediate release of all those detained by Israel during this attack, and for the return of all their seized property.

We note that a further aid boat, the MV Rachel Corrie, which was delayed as a result of an Israeli sabotage attempt, is currently sailing to Gaza, and we support the demand of the Irish government that Israel allow it safe passage to Gaza.

In an attempt to justify this attack, Israel has been brazenly lying, attempting to define it as an attempted lynch of its troops by passengers on the boats. This is a further sign that Israel does not respond to words of condemnation; only action will have any effect.

Conference reaffirms the support of Conference 2009 for an economic cultural and sporting boycott of Israel, and call on Unison to join the scores of unions around the world who have endorsed the Palestinian United Call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel. Further to that as an immediate sanction for the illegal attack on the Flotilla we call on the Government to expel the Israeli ambassador.

Conference condemns the Histadrut’s statement of 31st May which supports uncritically, the Israeli Government’s action against the Flotilla and agrees to suspend our relations with the Histadrut pending the outcome of our review of our relations as previously agreed by National Delegate Conference.