Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Stephen Smith must condemn Israel’s attack, break diplomatic ties

*** Media Release ***

Tues 1 June 2010, 7:30am. For immediate release.
Socialist Alliance candidate Alex Bainbridge who is running for the seat of Perth, currently held by Stephen Smith, has called on the Australian government to immediately condemn Israel’s attack on the Gaza peace flotilla.

Australia must condemn outright Israel’s attack on the flotilla carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza,” said Socialist Alliance candidate for the seat of Perth, Alex Bainbridge.

“Stephen Smith’s response to date – to express regret and shock about the deaths, to ‘proceed calmly’ and to call on Israel to provide a detailed explanation – is inadequate,” said Bainbridge.

“Israel has engaged in an act of piracy in international waters against unarmed peace activists bringing humanitarian aid to Gaza – there is no way of justifying that assault,” said Bainbridge.

“Stephen Smith has called on Israel to ‘ease’ its blockade of Gaza which is another way of supporting the continuation of that blockade in a modified form,” said Bainbridge.

“In reality, any form of blockade against Gaza is an infringement of human rights – the blockade should be ended and Australia should call for this explicitly,” said Bainbridge.

“This shocking attack is a direct consequence of Israel’s attempt to besiege the people of Gaza who want nothing more than an end to the unjust occupation of Palestine,” said Bainbridge.

Israel’s actions are so shocking that Australia should break diplomatic ties immediately until the flotilla and its passengers are released and allowed to travel unimpeded to Gaza,” said Bainbridge.

“Emergency protest actions are happening everywhere and I will be attending and promoting the Perth protest action at 5pm at Wesley Church in the city today,” said Bainbridge.

For more information:

Alex Bainbridge 0413 976 638