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Marches In NZ Regarding Israel/Resolution 1701

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Marches across New Zealand tomorrow demand Israel withdraw from Lebanon and Palestine and warn against UN Resolution 1701.

Aotearoa Jews for Justice, Wellington Palestine Group and Peace Action Wellington join with the Palestine Human Rights Campaign (Auckland) in calling on the New Zealand government to think very carefully before sending any troops to join the expanded multinational UNIFIL force in Lebanon.

They say the terms of UN Security Council Resolution 1701 are vague and one-sided. Protests are organised in Wellington & Auckland for Saturday September 2nd, to demand Israel withdraw from both Lebanon and Palestine.

Wellington Palestine Group spokesperson Omar Khamoun says New Zealand has previously had its fingers burnt in participating in United States’ led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq.

“We go leaping into sending our troops everywhere there is a conflict, under the belief that our soldiers will help bring peace by invading a country, and don’t consider that most people don’t like their countries being invaded,’ Khamoun says.

Mr Khamoun says that if New Zealand forces are just going to southern Lebanon to disarm Hizbollah on Israel’s behalf, then they should not go. "They should be sent to the West Bank and Gaza to protect the Palestinians from Israeli acts of violence like infrastructure destruction, assassination squads, home demolitions and the dozens of elected Hamas members of the Palestinian Parliament arrested by Israel."

Aotearoa Jews for Justice spokesperson Ali Egoz says “New Zealand should be doing more than just rewarding Israel for its war crimes in Lebanon by helping finish the job. Instead New Zealand ought to be joining the international community to force Israel to withdraw from land that doesn’t belong to it – not just Lebanon, but Syria’s Golan Heights and of course from the Occupied Palestinian Territories.”

Ms Egoz says the United Nations ominously missed an opportunity to extract a price from Israel in return for protecting its northern border.

“At the very least Israel should have been made to give back the Golan Heights to Syria, which it captured in 1967. Instead Israel is allowed to refuse to even discuss this.”

ENDS

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