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NZ Govt must respond to Israel’s Gaza onslaught

4 August 2014

NZ Govt must respond to Israel’s Gaza onslaught

The Green Party is calling for new measures in response to the latest round of violence inflicted on Palestine by Israel, including divestment by the New Zealand Government and the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador.

The Green Party’s response comes after yet another United Nations school has been shelled by the Israeli Defence Force, resulting in further loss of civilian life.

“Israel’s refusal to heed the call of world leaders to stop the civilian slaughter in Gaza beggars belief,” Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said today.

“The UN Secretary-General has described the indiscriminate bombardment of civilians in Gaza as ‘a moral outrage and a criminal act’.

“We agree. There is no single action in the modern era more morally reprehensible than the slaughter of civilians of this scale coupled with a complete disregard for world opinion.

“The New Zealand Government cannot sit by and do nothing.”

According to figures from 2013 the New Zealand Superfund, owned by the New Zealand public and operated for the public, has $7 million invested in 38 Israeli companies.

“The Government must call on the Superfund to divest from these investments immediately,” Dr Graham said.

“New Zealand cannot sit by and take no action as more innocent Palestinians are killed.

“New Zealand divesting from Israeli companies is a simple action that, along with other countries taking such an action too, can put real economic pressure on Israel to end the atrocities in Gaza.

“The Green Party is also calling on the Government to immediately expel the Israeli Ambassador from New Zealand. This is a clear diplomatic signal we should take in response to the senseless slaughter in Gaza.

“The continued presence of the Israeli Ambassador in New Zealand, coupled with the Government’s soft approach to the Gaza crisis, sends a clear message to Tel Aviv that their actions are not sufficient to suspend diplomatic relations. We think they are serious enough, and we would take that step.

“New Zealand should cut off ties at ambassadorial level until Israel’s actions accord, once more, with proper international standards.”

ENDS

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