“The Presbyterian Peace Fellowship stands with our Jewish sisters and brothers as they call a just peace in Israel-Palestine,” says Peace Fellowship Executive Director Rick Ufford-Chase.
The Presbyterian Peace Fellowship announces a new nonviolent initiative, joining with European Jewish groups to send a boatload of humanitarian supplies to Gaza.
The Peace Fellowship has raised USD10,000 from its members to lend solidarity to the three groups organizing the unarmed civilian action: European Jews for a Just Peace in the Middle East, Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East (both in Germany) and Jews for Justice for the Palestinians (UK).
“Their physical and moral courage inspires us. Together, we are calling for an end to Israel’s embargo and blockade of Gaza and for the creation of a viable Palestinian state”, explains Director Rick Ufford-Chase.
“It is time for the international community to reach across hatred and fear and to work with Palestine and Israel to provide life-sustaining and community-restoring goods to the people of Gaza in ways that do not diminish the security of Israel and its people. In this complex situation, we believe that this is what Jesus would do and what he calls us to do.”
Secret Interfaith mission
In an undisclosed Mediterranean harbor, the three groups are loading the boat with medicines, baby food, children’s clothing, outboard motors for fishermen, school supplies, art supplies and musical instruments.
On board will be approximately 14 passengers, both Jewish and interfaith, with the possibility of a second boat. Also on board will be members of the media to document the unarmed attempt to break the state of Israel’s three year blockade on Gaza, where 1.5 million Palestinians are trapped in a humanitarian crisis in an area less than one-tenth the size of Rhode Island.
The groups will announce the date and location of the launch when the vessel is underway, within the next few weeks. If two boats launch with space available, the Peace Fellowship has asked to send a North American Presbyterian as part of the delegation.
“The situation changes daily,” says Len Bjorkman of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship National Committee.
“But we cannot accept Israel’s current requirement to have sole discretion over what goods go into Gaza. That formula continues the policies of the last three years that have prevented the reconstruction of houses, hospitals, businesses and infrastructure laid waste by Israel’s devastating attack in 2009″.
Our Jewish partners in the Jewish Ship for Gaza are saying that might does not make right in this or any other human circumstance.
“We stand with them. It is time to find peaceable ways to bring an end to the siege on Gaza.“
Source: Presbyterian Peace Fellowship