Socially-distanced rallies take place in UK to say “No” to Israel’s plan to illegally annex Palestine. Photo credit: Facebook via Ireland PSC
Scores of representatives of civil society institutions and NGOs have joined socially-distanced rallies held across the UK as part of a Day of Action staged by the Palestine Solidairty Camapign (PSC) to oppose Israel’s plan to illegally annex large swathes of occupied Palestinian territory in the West Bank and Jordan Valley.
Rally goers raised the Palestinian flag and lifted banners reading “Free Palestine”; “No to Annexation”, and “Freedom and Justice for Palestine”.
They chanted slogans calling for an end to Israel’s occupation of Palestine, a halt to the unilateral settlement plan, an immediate response by the international community to Israel’s human rights violations, and the enactment of sanctions against the “apartheid regime”.
The initiative has emerged thanks to efforts by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) to organize a National Day of Action on Saturday the 4th July, to spur resistance in the UK to Israel’s annexation move.
A few days earlier, PRC voiced its decision to take part in the move. The Centre issued a statement expressing its solidarity with the Palestinian people and reiterating its firm commitment to international law and relevant UN resolutions prohibiting annexation of occupied territory.
PRC said it will join PSC’s efforts seeking to pressurize the UK Government to take action in response to Israel’s annexation move through the enactment of sanctions and called on all human rights NGOs and civil society representatives to actively take part in the Day of Action and voice solidarity with the Palestinian people.
Both PSC and PRC stressed the need for respecting public health considerations and encouraged people to take action in their localities.
Both NGOs also called for groups made up of no more than 6, adhering to social distancing regulations, to demonstrate by holding signs with 3 slogans – Stop Annexation, End Apartheid, Sanctions Now - and then to share a picture on social media.
Israel’s projected unilateral annexation of large swathes of the illegally occupied West Bank has spurred widespread condemnation. The move is seen as a culmination of years of land theft, displacement of Palestinians, and illegal settlement of occupied Palestinian land.
The land grab is opposed by the Palestinians, who threatened to abolish bilateral agreements with Israel if it went ahead with the annexation, further undermining prospects for a two-state solution.
The UN had earlier warned that the Israeli annexation of Palestinian land would lead to the outbreak of conflict and instability in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.