As the UK government welcomed US president Donald Trump to its shores this week, Ireland put its neighbours to shame by taking a brave stand against illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine.
On 11 July, Ireland moved forward with a bill to ban products from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The country’s Seanad (upper house) passed the bill with 25 in favour, 20 against, and 14 [paywall] abstentions. It will also need to pass in the Dáil (lower house) in order to become law.
If passed, the legislation would prevent [paywall]:
the import and sales of goods, services and natural resources originating in illegal settlements in occupied territories.
— Mondoweiss (@Mondoweiss) July 12, 2018
Read on...Support us and go ad-free
“A first step, but an important one”
this is a first step, but an important one. Today we state strongly: Ireland will always stand for [international] humanitarian law, justice & human rights. Onwards.
She had previously explained why people should get behind the bill, saying:
In the occupied territories, people are forcibly kicked out of their homes, fertile farming land is seized, and the fruit and vegetables produced are then sold on Irish shelves to pay for it all…
These settlements are war crimes, and it’s time for Ireland to show some leadership and refuse to support them.
On July 11th, my bill to ban illegal #SettlementGoods is in the Seanad. We're close to a historic move for justice in #Palestine, but I need your help! Plz take 2m to ask your TDs & Senators to support the bill: https://t.co/p4DXCOH5tU @trocaire @ChristianAidIrl @irishcongress pic.twitter.com/2x3PuOZDBW
— Frances Black (@frances_black) June 27, 2018
The bill had also received support from high-profile public figures like Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters:
On stage in Dublin, @rogerwaters urges support for my Occupied Territories Bill – ending trade in #SettlementGoods produced on occupied Palestinian land. Thanks for the support Roger 👍🇵🇸 pic.twitter.com/df95OshogH
— Frances Black (@frances_black) June 27, 2018
“Ireland setting a fantastic example!”
People on social media soon responded to the Seanad victory with thanks and praise for Black and her colleagues:
Thank you so much for all your efforts! What an important step for justice. Ireland setting a fantastic example!
It’s time more countries actually took a stand against the illegal settlements! They are against international law after all it’s a no brainer.
— Andriana Lee (@AndrianaP_Lee) July 11, 2018
— JewishVoiceForPeace (@jvplive) July 11, 2018
Congratulations @frances_black I am glad your experience and voice of concern for the Palestinian people was heard by those who help get enough support to pass this bill, and shame on those who didn't! This is the start of something much bigger! Well done 👏🏾
— 🇬🇹Bobby Hanlon🇮🇪🇺🇦 (@bobby9496) July 11, 2018
Well done Frances, an emotional moment. My Palestinian friends are thankful and delighted x
— Dara Malone Shearman (@ShearmanDara) July 11, 2018
Ireland is putting its UK neighbours to shame
The Seanad vote comes in the wake of Israel’s massacre of at least 60 Palestinian protesters in Gaza on 14 May, and the overall murder of over 120 Palestinian civilians in recent months – offences which have attracted UN condemnation. Amid allegations of war crimes in both the West Bank and Gaza, there is every reason to hold Israel to account. That’s why, from Spain to Ireland, cities are taking firm action against Israel.
The UK government, however, has taken Israel’s side, failing miserably to hold its ally to account. It’s currently schmoozing with Donald Trump – the man whose actions have only worsened the situation in Palestine.
Ireland, on the other hand, is leading the way. By taking real steps to hold Israel to account for its human rights abuses in Palestine, it’s putting its British neighbours to shame.
– UK citizens can write to their national or local politicians to share their concerns and demand action.
Featured image via Ralf Peter Reimann
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?