Protest Blocks Israeli Cargo Ship at Port of Oakland in Support for Palestinians

Protest Blocks Israeli Cargo Ship at Port of Oakland in Support for Palestinians

Pro-Palestine demonstrators protest Israel's latest assault on Gaza and ongoing apartheid, ethnic cleansing, occupation, and settler colonization of the West Bank and East Jerusalem on May 15, 2021 in the Mission District of San Francisco. (Photo: AROC/Fa

A Pro-Palestinian protest shut down a section of the Port of Oakland on Friday, blocking an Israeli container ship from being unloaded.

It is an Israeli ship and the protesters blocked it to show their support for the Palestinians.

"It's incumbent on all of us as taxpayers to demand more and to stop U.S. aid to Israel as long as the violence continues," said organizer Lara Kiswani, Executive Director of the Arab Resource and Organizing Center.

The ship is an Israeli ZIM operated cargo ship carrying a mixture of products from Asia.

The group protested this shipping company the last time it sent a ship to Oakland in 2014. That protest lasted for three months. The company has not been back since.

"So to our surprise, it was planning on coming back. So we called for mobilization and that's why we are here today," Kiswani said.

“Our goal today is to show the city of Oakland that we do not want them to do business with and allow Israeli apartheid money to come into our city,” group spokesman Wassim Hage told reporters. “It’s part of an international picket movement at port cities around the world that will be going on over the next couple of weeks.”

A number of truck drivers also blared their horns in support of the gathering, with participants calling for an economic boycott of Israel over its aggression.

Protest organizers said more protesters were on hand and “growing by the minute,” according to a statement from the Arab Resource and Organizing Center. The group posted a photograph of a crowd outside the fence surrounding the Trapac Terminal berth.

ZIM is a publicly held Israeli international cargo shipping company with headquarters in Haifa, Israel, and a North American headquarters in Norfolk, Va.

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