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Cynthia McKinney reportedly taken captive by Israeli Navy

Please contact the White House – 202-456-1111 – to ask them to help secure Cynthia’s return and end the blockade of Gaza.

Cynthia McKinney Reportedly Taken Captive By Israeli Navy

Posted by Ronald Hardy at Green Party Watch on June 30th, 2009

The latest from www.freegaza.org reports that the humanitarian vessel Spirit of Humanity has been attacked and boarded by the Israelis 23 miles off the coast of Gaza. Former US Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney is among the 21 human rights workers taken prisoner off the ship.

Update: Received this e-mail update/press release from a colleague of Cynthia McKinney:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
30 June 2009

ISRAEL ATTACKS JUSTICE BOAT; KIDNAPS HUMAN RIGHTS WORKERS; CONFISCATES MEDICINE, TOYS AND OLIVE TREES

For more information contact:
Greta Berlin (English)
tel: +357 99 081 767 / friends at freegaza dot org

Caoimhe Butterly (Arabic/English/Spanish):
tel: +357 99 077 820 / sahara78 at hotmail.co.uk
www.FreeGaza.org

[23 miles off the coast of Gaza , 15:30pm] – Today Israeli Occupation Forces attacked and boarded the Free Gaza Movement boat, the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY, abducting 21 human rights workers from 11 countries, including Noble laureate Mairead Maguire and former U.S. Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (see below for a complete list of passengers). The passengers and crew are being forcibly dragged toward Israel .

“This is an outrageous violation of international law against us. Our boat was not in Israeli waters, and we were on a human rights mission to the Gaza Strip,” said Cynthia McKinney, a former U.S. Congresswoman and presidential candidate. “President Obama just told Israel to let in humanitarian and reconstruction supplies, and that’s exactly what we tried to do. We’re asking the international community to demand our release so we can resume our journey.”

According to an International Committee of the Red Cross report released yesterday, the Palestinians living in Gaza are “trapped in despair.” Thousands of Gazans whose homes were destroyed earlier during Israel ’s December/January massacre are still without shelter despite pledges of almost $4.5 billion in aid, because Israel refuses to allow cement and other building material into the Gaza Strip. The report also notes that hospitals are struggling to meet the needs of their patients due to Israel ’s disruption of medical supplies.

“The aid we were carrying is a symbol of hope for the people of Gaza , hope that the sea route would open for them, and they would be able to transport their own materials to begin to reconstruct the schools, hospitals and thousands of homes destroyed during the onslaught of “Cast Lead”. Our mission is a gesture to the people of Gaza that we stand by them and that they are not alone” said fellow passenger Mairead Maguire, winner of a Noble Peace Prize for her work in Northern Ireland .

Just before being kidnapped by Israel , Huwaida Arraf, Free Gaza Movement chairperson and delegation co-coordinator on this voyage, stated that: “No one could possibly believe that our small boat constitutes any sort of threat to Israel . We carry medical and reconstruction supplies, and children’s toys. Our passengers include a Nobel peace prize laureate and a former U.S. congressperson. Our boat was searched and received a security clearance by Cypriot Port Authorities before we departed, and at no time did we ever approach Israeli waters.”

Arraf continued, “ Israel ’s deliberate and premeditated attack on our unarmed boat is a clear violation of international law and we demand our immediate and unconditional release.”

###

3 Responses

  1. “human rights workers”

    These people would be more properly identified as political terrorist. Interfering with a sovereign nations internal affairs.

    • I totally disagree.

      And, how is not meddling with sovereign nations internal affaris in Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.

      If a foreign government’s Navy snatched you while you were trying to deliver toys and medical supplies, you would probably want the US President and government to help you.

  2. Their boat was not in Israel waters, they had humanitarian cargo, people on board for human relief, people in Gaza starving to same extent as poor African countries, and the U.S. sides with Israel which oppresses people in Gaza, steals their land and builds walls on Palestinan territories. I encourage everyone to look at the U.N. maps from 60 years ago, which split the land between Israel and Palestine. (Palistine was a country on its own prior) Unless you see how Israel has stolen their land, you can hardly begin to understand what is going on over there.

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