As Israel faces the charge of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), protests are planned in more than 60 cities, in at least 36 countries, across 6 continents. With this, the seventh national march for Palestine in London on Saturday 13 January is part of a global day of action mobilising for a full ceasefire in Gaza. Meanwhile, South Africa’s Jewish Board of Deputies has accused its government of antisemitism over genocide accusations.
Israel: genocide 101?
Currently, lawyers for South Africa are presenting their case at the UN’s top court in the Hague, where the country lodged an urgent appeal to force Israel to “immediately suspend” its military operations in Gaza.
South Africa argues that Israel is breaking its commitments under the UN Genocide Convention, alleging the bombing and invasion of Gaza is “intended to bring about the destruction of a substantial part of the Palestinian national, racial, and ethnical group”. “No armed attack on a state territory no matter how serious… can provide justification for or defend breaches of the convention,” Justice Minister Ronald Lamola told the court.
Israeli far-right president Isaac Herzog has dismissed the accusations as “atrocious” and “preposterous”. Predictably, South Africa’s Jewish Board of Deputies (BoD) has also condemned the legal action, accusing the government of antisemitism and of “inverting reality”. “These charges have at their root an antisemitic worldview, which denies Jews their rights to defend themselves,” the body’s chair Karen Milner said on Thursday.
So, against this backdrop people will be marching around the world again – showing their opposition to Israel’s bombardment of the Gaza Strip which has claimed the lives of more than 23,000 Palestinians, the majority of them being women and children.
Marching for Palestine globally
On 13 January hundreds of thousands of people are expected to demonstrate in London on a National March for Palestine. They will be joining millions more who will be marching in more than 60 cities, in least 36 countries, across 6 continents, in a global day of action for Palestine. The global day of action was called by the UK organising coalition comprising the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Palestinian Forum in Britain, Stop the War Coalition, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Friends of Al Aqsa, and the Muslim Association of Britain.
Israel’s actions are causing outrage around the world and now for the first time a global mobilisation of Palestinian solidarity has been organised this weekend. Saturday will be the 99th day of Israel’s offensive on Gaza, and there will be demonstrations in dozens of cities in countries including the UK, US, Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Japan, Indonesia, South Korea, Australia, Brazil, Jordan, and Turkey.
The march in London will be the seventh national demonstration since October, which together with five days of action constitutes one of the largest, sustained political campaigns in British history.
‘Charge Israel with the gravest of crimes’
Ben Jamal, PSC Director, said:
The world needs to charge Israel with the gravest of crimes – genocide – not just in the International Court of Justice, but in the court of global public opinion. In the face of the failure of Governments, including the UK, to act to uphold International law and defend fundamental human rights, people continue to take to the streets to protest, week after week.
This Saturday, from Australia to South America, from Dacca to Washington, people of conscience will show the world demands a full ceasefire and an end to Israel’s impunity from international law.
London has been at the forefront of these global protests, attracting hundreds of thousands of solidarity campaigners despite Government hostility and Opposition indifference. Once again on Saturday we will show the majority of British people stand with Palestinians in this dark hour of their decades of oppression.
A permanent ceasefire must be the starting point to address the underlying causes, including Israeli military occupation and a system of oppression against the Palestinian people that is considered internationally to meet the legal definition of apartheid. We will continue to march, demonstrate, and organise to demand justice for the Palestinian people.
Demanding ceasefires and permanent solutions
CND general secretary Kate Hudson said:
More than 23,000 people have been killed as a result of Israel’s invasion and bombing of Gaza, with thousands more suffering from a lack of food, clean water, and medical supplies.
Millions of people will take to the streets across the world this Saturday, to demand a permanent ceasefire and a lasting political settlement for all Palestinians. The UK government must end its support for Israel’s brutal war in Gaza, and join the wider international community in condemning its war crimes.
The longer the conflict continues, the greater the chance of regional tensions spilling over into a wider regional war which could see nuclear use. It must be ended as quickly as possible.
The Jeremy Corbyn-founded Peace and Justice Project said:
Last weekend, thousands of people demonstrated in town centres and cities across the country. From vigils in Abergavenny to BDS [Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions] tours in Bath to rallies outside Starmer’s office in Camden we will continue to speak up for the rights of Palestinians and call for an immediate ceasefire.
This Saturday there will be a national demonstration in Central London – the first one of the year – where our whole movement will gather to demand a full, permanent and immediate ceasefire. If you can, please join us in London on Saturday and let’s help make this one of the biggest demonstrations that we have seen.
Featured image via PSC