To mark The International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People Peace Quest Cape Breton called for peace in Gaza and the West Bank. Below is an edited version of the organization’s November 29 statement.
On this UN International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, Peace Quest Cape Breton reiterates its call for every peace-loving nation to demand a full ceasefire and termination of hostilities between Israel and Hamas, and the revival of a peace process designed to end the long nightmare of Palestinian statelessness and illegal Israeli occupation of Gaza and the West Bank. Such a peace, we are convinced, is in the vital human interest of all Palestinians and all Israelis, of all faiths and none, and constitutes the only alternative to continued civilian suffering, ethnic cleansing, terrorism, and mutual dehumanization, tearing the region and the UN system apart.
On November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly adopted resolution 181, known as ‘the Partition Resolution,’ calling for the establishment of two states, with Jerusalem to remain undivided under international control. As the UN webpage on the Day of Solidarity dryly observes, “of the two states to be created under this resolution, only one, Israel, has so far come into being,” due to the large-scale ethnic cleansing of Palestine that occurred in 1948 – the Nakba (Catastrophe) – and, since 1967, the illegal Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.
In 1979, the General Assembly chose November 29 as the day to stand in annual solidarity with Palestinians – now over eight million – living in the limbo of statelessness in both Palestine and the vast refugee diaspora in Jordan, Lebanon, and elsewhere…
Since the heinous Hamas massacres of 1,200 Israeli citizens – two thirds of them civilian – on October 7, Israel has embarked on a campaign of massive, indiscriminate reprisals and collective punishment against the overcrowded and defenceless civilian population of Gaza, killing over 14,000 people, and over 5,000 children, in blatant disregard of international humanitarian law, international human rights law, and the Laws of Armed Conflict. Over 100 UN aid workers – teachers, nurses, doctors – have also perished. And when the current lull in violence (to allow for the exchange of hostages and prisoners) concludes, the death and destruction seems certain to begin again, with no political end in sight.
Peace Quest Campaign Coordinator Sean Howard noted that Canada has stood in “sleepwalking lockstep” with the United States, United Kingdom, and other western states – with some notable exceptions such as France and Ireland – in refusing to support the call of two thirds of the General Assembly for a ceasefire, preferring instead woefully inadequate ‘humanitarian pauses.’
“To stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people today,” Howard argued, “is to stand with humanity at a moment of truth and decision. In continuing to fail that test, Canada is instead standing in implicit solidarity, not with the Israeli people, but with war criminals in the far-right Israeli leadership.”
To read this year’s message from the United Nation’s Secretary-General on International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:
To learn more about the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People: https://www.un.org/unispal/history/