VOW delivers a message to the Israeli Ambassador in Ottawa
July 24, 2014
The Canadian Voice of Women for Peace is extremely concerned about the extremely destructive attacks taking place almost entirely within Gaza killing, wounding and traumatizing so many.
We recognize the trauma that rocket attacks into Israel are causing, and regret Israeli military and civilian deaths; however, we do not believe that the hundreds of deaths and the destruction of thousands of homes of Palestinians can be justified as an act of self-defence.
We understand the deep roots of the conflict and call upon the Israel government to recognize the needs of the people in Gaza for a future that is livable and just.
As a condition of the ceasefire of 2012, which has largely been maintained until the last few weeks, the government of Israel promised to end the siege on Gaza. This has not happened. It is the lifting of the siege on Gaza that Hamas is holding out for at the current time, as conditions in Gaza under the siege are unlivable.
Israel is in violation of International Law as per Resolution 1544 (May 19, 2004) – Reaffirms resolutions 242, 338, 446, 1322, 1397, 1402, 1405, 1435, and 1515, reiterates “the obligation of Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War”, calls “on Israel to address its security needs within the boundaries of international law”, expresses “grave concern at the continued deterioration of the situation on the ground in the territory occupied by Israel since 1967”, condemns “the killing of Palestinian civilians that took place in the Rafah area”, expresses grave concern “by the recent demolition of homes committed by Israel, the occupying Power, in the Rafah refugee camp”, reaffirms “its support for the Road Map, endorsed in resolution 1515”, “Calls on Israel to respect its obligations under international humanitarian law, and insists, in particular, on its obligation not to undertake demolition of homes contrary to that law”, and “Calls on both parties to immediately implement their obligations under the Road Map.
Unnecessary death, destruction, and suffering will not help Israel to achieve long-term peace and security, nor will it help Palestinians to advance their society. Indeed people on both sides will be left to suffer the physical and psychological damage for generations.
The Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, founded in 1960, has always worked for peaceful resolution of conflicts and adherence to international laws and conventions. Collective punishment and civilian attacks are illegal under international law. In particular, the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace works to promote the participation of women in all peace negotiations and in post-conflict reconstruction, as is mandated by several United Nations Resolutions.
We urge you to stop the bombing immediately and undertake direct negotiations with Hamas.
Please convey our concerns to your government.
Lyn Adamson and Janis Alton