Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Kantipur National Daily
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
सरकारले दलित बिहे गर्नेलाई एक लाख दिने घोषणा गरेको छ, तर अन्तर्जातीय बिहे गर्ने दैलेखका दलित युवालाई समाजले कुटपिट गरेर ६० हजार तिराएको छ । तर, पुरस्कार दिने प्रशासन मौन छ । जगनाथ गाविस-६ का अमित विक र सविता शाहीबीच १६ भदौमा प्रेमविवाह भएको थियो । यही 'आरोप' मा केटीपक्षले दलित युवालाई कुटपिट गरे, ६० हजार जरिवाना पनि तिराए । अमित विकले कुटपिट सहे, ६० हजार पनि तिरे । तर, कथित माथिल्लो जातको समाजले त्यत्तिमा चित्त बुझाएन । सवितालाई जबर्जस्ती अर्कैसँग बिहे पनि गरिदिएको छ ।
सरकारले अन्तर्जातीय बिहे गर्नेलाई एक लाख दिने भनेको छ । तर, दैलेखका दलितले अन्तर्जातीय बिहे गरेकै कारण कुटपिट सहनुपर्यो, ६० हजार जरिवाना तिर्नुपर्यो र प्रेम गरेर भित्र्याएकी श्रीमती छाड्नुपर्यो । तर, दोषीमाथि कुनै कारबाही भएको छैन । 'बिहे गरेकै कारण युवालाई कुटपिट गरियो, गरिब परिवारबाट ६० हजार उठाइयो,' दलित अधिकारकर्मी प्रेम भुर्तेलले नयाँ पत्रिकासित भने, 'दलितकी नवविवाहित श्रीमतीलाई पनि अर्कैसँग बिहे गर्न बाध्य पारियो, योभन्दा ठूलो अन्याय अरू के हुन्छ ?' जगनाथ-३ का गोठे विक (दिवंगत) का छोरा अमित र पदमबहादुर शाहीकी छोरी सविताबीच गत १६ भदौमा बिहे भएको थियो । तर, गाउँमा बस्दा कुटपिट हुने डरले उनीहरू रातारात भागेर दैलेख सदरमुकाम आएका थिए ।
तर, दुवैजनालाई सदरमुकामबाट फर्काउन २७ भदौमा केटीका बुबा र आमा आएका थिए । उनीहरूले दलित युवाकी आमा र दाइलाई पनि लिएर आएका थिए । माइतीपक्षका अभिभावकले 'जे हुनु भयो, अब तिमीहरूको राम्रोसँगै बिहे गराइदिन्छौँ' भनेर घर फर्काएका थिए ।
हामी घरमा लैजान्छौँ, औपचारिक बिहे पनि गराइदिन्छौँ भन्दै नवविवाहित जोडीलाई खोजिदिन उनीहरूले अधिकारवादी संघसंस्थासँग अनुरोध पनि गरेका थिए । अधिकारवादीहरूको समेत रोहवरमा बेहुलाबेहुलीलाई घर फर्काइएको थियो । तर, २९ भदौको साँझ माइतीपक्षको घर पुग्नासाथ दलित युवा र उनका अभिभावकलाई समेत कुटपिट गरिएको थियो ।
'अभिभावकहरू नै सदरमुकाम आएर दलित अधिकारकर्मी र अन्य संघसंस्थासँग सुरक्षा र न्यायको माग पनि गरेका थिए,' अधिकारकर्मी भुर्तेलले भने, 'तर, अभिभावक आएर औपचारिक बिहे गराइदिने आश्वासन दिएपछि उनीहरू गाउँ फर्किएका हुन्, उनीहरूमाथि धोका भयो ।'
दलित बेहुला भीरबाट हामफाली भागे पनि उनका दाजुलाई बेहुलीका जेठाबाबु चक्रबहादुर शाहीले जरिवाना तिर्न बाध्य बनाएका थिए । उनको धम्कीअनुसार दलित परिवारले ४ असोजमा ५० हजार तिरेका थिए । तर, त्यतिले पुगेन भन्दै उनीहरू पाँच दिनपछि दलितको घरमा आएर थप १० हजार लिएर गएका थिए । ६० हजार जरिवाना उठाएपछि दलित युवाकी प्रेमिकालाई जाजरकोट जिल्लाको मजकोट गाविसमा बिहे गरेर पठाइएको छ ।
कुटाइबाट बच्न भागेका अमित अहिलेसम्म बेपत्ता छन् । कुनै दिन उनी घर फर्किए मारिदिने धम्कीसमेत कथित माथिल्लो जातको समाजले दिएको रुम गाविसका शिक्षक नन्द विश्वकर्माले जानकारी दिए । उनले भने, 'अमितले एसएलसी पास गरेको सर्टिफिकेट र मार्कसिट तथा नागरिकता पनि उनीहरूले नै खोसेर लगेका छन् ।' पीडित परिवारका सदस्य त यति डराएका छन्, उनीहरूले यसबारेमा पत्रिकासँग केही पनि बोल्न सकेनन् ।
दलित स्वावलम्बी समाजका अध्यक्षसमेत रहेका भुर्तेलले घटनालाई दानवीय भन्दै सरकारले दोषीलाई कानुनको दायरामा ल्याई कारबाही गर्नुपर्ने बताउँछन् । 'दोषीलाई सरकारले कारबाही गर्नुपर्छ, न्यायका लागि लड्न हामी तयार छौँ,' उनले भने, 'न्यायको टुंगो लगाउन पीडितहरूलाई सदरमुकाम बोलाएका छौँ । सदरमुकामबाटै उजुरी दिई कानुनी प्रक्रिया अगाडि बढाउँछौँ ।'
extracted from: Naya Patrika Daily
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Making of a new civil society
-CELAYNE HEATON SHRESTHA
A debate rages today around the meaning andthe role of civil society. This debate is takingplace in newspapers and within the space ofcivil society itself. New groups labellingthemselves as 'civil society' are being set up with thesingle ostensible purpose of countering the approachand orientation of existing ones. The debate wasreignited, of late, with former Prime Minister PushpaKamal Dahal's removal of the Chief of Army Staffs(CoAS) Rookmangud Katawal.
Should civil society have voiced an opinion whenthe prime minister sacked Katawal? Should they havecondemned the prime minister's and the president'smoves equally? How should civil society positionitself in relation to political parties and formal politics?Some intellectuals have dismissed one suchgroup, Citizen Movement for Peace and Democracy(CMDP) or Nagarik Andolan, as a 'wing' of UCPN(Maoist). If similarity in terms of their agendasmakes CMDP a Maoist wing, then dœs this meanthat, when Dahal argued in a recent people's assemblyin Khula Manch that political parties should go forconsensus - echoing the words proffered by the likesof Krishna Pahadi a week earlier - is he therebybecoming a member of CMDP? That CMDP was a'Maoist wing' was further argued on the grounds thatthey were selective in terms of the issues they raised.
But is it realistic to expect that busy professionals (asmany CMDP members, indeed, are) raise every singleissue? Would this simply not compound the sense ofinsecurity felt by ordinary people?Such arguments simply donot hold water; striking as theproduct of over-interpretationand political wishful thinking - orscaremongering.
The ongoing debate about therole of civil society is political, nottheoretical. This is clear to anyonefamiliar with the concept ofcivil society. Indeed, the concepthas, through time and space,acquired such a wealth of meaningthat it is possible to draw onany strand to support one's argumentsin favour or against the'civil society'.A concept developed in 18th century Europe, itfell into disuse until the 1980s when democraticmovements in Eastern Europe and Latin America sawfit to revive the notion. At first it used to refer to akind of society: a civilised society, characterised bythe rule of law. It stood in contrast to the arbitraryrule, uncertainty and warring characteristic of absolutistmonarchies. In this vision, 'civil society' includedthe state - a civilised state fit for a civil polity. Civilsociety then came to mean a part of society ratherthan a type of society, namely the realm of collectiveaction beyond the household. The normative oppositionof civil society to the state was to emerge onlywhen civil society came to be conceived in this way,although even then, not consistently. In some laterversions, civil society is constituted by the state and isthe place where the state enforces its power throughan array of cultural, educational and religious practices.
Other points of contention included the relationof civil society to the market: for some, it included themarket and economic relations, while for others itwas restricted to action of non-economic nature. As ittravelled outside its original context, the conceptacquired further meanings, for example coming torefer to civil as opposed to military rule in LatinAmerica.
In terms of practice, too, 'civil society' dœs notcorrespond neatly to any kind of activity or associationalform. Further, it has come to be used by groupsacross the world to refer to quite different kinds ofsocio-political projects. For example, in LatinAmerica, civil society is used to refer to labour movementsin opposition to middle class forms of associationsuch as NGOs; in other parts, as in Nepal, thelabel 'civil society' has long meant mostly middleclassmovements and organisations. Even then, wecan see different models of civil society today inNepal. First, there is an 'NGO model' (very much inkeeping with liberal tradition in civil society thinkingpromoted by donors since the late 90s) populated by'impartial organisations'. Secondly, there comes a'citizens' model' of civil society, made up of individualswith clear albeit different political views and agendas.
We are nearing something of a consensus in thedefinition of civil society today: minimally, civil societyis understood to refer to associative action undertakenvoluntarily, that is neither part of the state norundertaken for economic reasons. Still, the complexityoutlined above highlights the futility of referringto theory and practice elsewhere to argue for oragainst the appropriateness of CMDP actions in thewake of CoAS Katawal's sacking. Any argument infavour or against CMDP might be elaborated, as suitsone's politics. Rather than dissecting the actions ofCMDP, we should perhaps be holding a different typeof debate altogether, namely: what kind of civil societyis appropriate for Nepal at this juncture? Can'politicisation' be strength rather than a weakness?One contentious point in Nepal is the desirability(or otherwise) of an apolitical civil society, whethercivil society groups should act 'just as mediators' orcan be more active in politics. Notably, CMDP wasaccused of acting like a political party when they tookto the streets and conducted a sit-in programme infront of the president's office. There is, of course, aprecedent for such actions. What's more, it is widelyacknowledged today that had CMDP been apoliticalin the spring and summer of 2005 and not acted likea political party - we would not be where we aretoday, enjoying political and other basic freedoms inthe first republic of Nepal. The argumentput forward by CMDP detractorsis that there no longer is, as in2005, a political vacuum; civil societytherefore, is no longer required toplay that role and should 'revert tobeing a mediator' and a 'think tank'.This is problematic on three counts.
Firstly, comes the issue of liberty,freedom of opinion and speech: surelyarguments against CMDP constitutean attempt to censor one group'sviews and its expression? And is thisnot hinting at an enduring autocratichabitus among the general population- in spite of the dismantling of the formaltrappings of autocracy -- that weshould be trying to transcend as we embark on makinga New Nepal?Secondly, is the issue of possibility: is it possible,at this point in time, to be neutral? It seems there isno longer any 'in between' space, for to be 'inbetween' is also to be located in the political spectrum- as 'status-quoist'.Thirdly, is apoliticality desirable, anyway? Evenassuming that CMDP or other civil society groups forthat matter, are a 'wing' of some political party -should we not be drawing on that as a strength?Could they not use their close relation with politicalparties to improve overall party political culture? Isthere not an urgent need for this and is this not apoint of common accord for all groups claiming thelabel civil society today? Rather than mud-slinging,we need to spend our precious time in rethinkingseriously what civil society can be in Nepal today. Asignificant process of rethinking and expanding thepossibilities for civil society action was initiated backin 2005 through the actions of CMDP - why limit ourselvesand argue that civil society should revert topre-2005 roles? The events of the past two years haveopened up possibilities for a profound transformationof state-society relationships; it is my hope thatcivil society groups will make the most of thismomentous and opportune time to create a new kindof civil society fit for a New Nepal.
(Celayne Heaton Shrestha is a visiting researchfellow at the University of Sussex. She is workingon a research project exploring Nepal's civil societyduring the years of the conflict. This project is partof a research programme directed from the LondonSchool of Economics, UK and is supported by theUK's Economic and Social Research Council.)
Monday, June 1, 2009
Sunday, May 31, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Monday, March 30, 2009
Sunday, March 15, 2009
As the New Delhi-mediated peace process faces its stiffest challenge and Maoists move towards one-party rule, leaders of various non-Maoist political parties, including those in the ruling coalition, are in the process of heading southward.
The visits by Nepali leaders coincides with the three-week-long so called “social-religious” visit to India — to Delhi, Bhopal, Gujarat and back to Delhi next week—- of dethroned King Gyanendra that began end of February. Most leaders have used “health check-up” as the pretext for their Delhi visit while others are “silent”. The meeting of united CPCn Maoists has concluded that the visit is not just the religious and social visit but there might be some conspiracy against the Nepal people and the party itself.
G P Koirala, president of the Nepali Congress, and Surya Bahadur Thapa, chairman of the Rastriya Janashakti Party, will be in Delhi on Wednesday. According to information available, former King Gyanendra is expected to arrive in Delhi a couple of days after Holi.
Though the visits are said to be private visit, we can not be sure that there will be just the private works. The visit of the so called democrat leaders and dethroned King Gyanendra is not only the coincident. There is something hidden. According to the political analyst, there is the role of Indian Embassy to arrange the visit and the meetings of the Nepali leaders with their Indian counterparts. From this what can we draw as the conclusion that the India is playing the role to seek the alternative to the elected and United CPN (Maoist) government? If it is true the so called democratic leaders may agree to re-establish the dead monarchy in any form. So I would like to request to all of the conscious people to be alert. Will you be agreeing with the so called political parties' leaders if they try to re-establish the monarchy again? If no lets condemn the steps that they are taking and the intervention of India in Nepali politics.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
President Barack Obama acted swiftly after his inauguration on Tuesday (January 20th, 2009), suspending all trials at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp for 120 days, and freezing all last-minute legislation—known as "midnight legislation"—passed by former President George W. Bush. Obama also plans to meet with military and economic advisors today (January 21st, 2009) to discuss the $825 billion fiscal stimulus package as well as the Iraq war.
Obama's request on Guantanamo would stop the proceedings for 21 pending cases, including the death penalty case against the five prisoners accused of plotting the September 11th attacks. The president has made it known over the last few months that he intends to shut down the prison camp at Guantanamo, the detention center that was viewed globally as a gross violation of human rights. Plans are also in the works to have American troops withdraw from Iraq over a period of 16 months, and aides say Obama is also considering pulling all troops before the planned date of 2012.
The president's cabinet appointments are also in their last stages of approval through the U.S. Senate today. Officials are set to debate, and most likely approve, Sen. Hillary Clinton as secretary of state, in addition to Janet Napolitano for homeland security secretary; Steven Chu as energy secretary; and Timothy Geithner for treasury secretary.
Biography: Barack Hussein Obama was born Aug. 4, 1961, in Honolulu, Hawaii. His father, Barack Obama, Sr., was born of Luo ethnicity in Nyanza Province, Kenya. He grew up herding goats with his own father, who was a domestic servant to the British. Although reared among Muslims, Obama, Sr., became an atheist at some point.
Obama’s mother, Ann Dunham, grew up in Wichita, Kansas. Her father worked on oil rigs during the Depression. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, he signed up for service in World War II and marched across Europe in Patton’s army. Dunham’s mother went to work on a bomber assembly line. After the war, they studied on the G. I. Bill, bought a house through the Federal Housing Program, and moved to Hawaii.
Meantime, Barack’s father had won a scholarship that allowed him to leave Kenya pursue his dreams in Hawaii. At the time of his birth, Obama’s parents were students at the East–West Center of the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Obama’s parents separated when he was two years old and later divorced. Obama’s father went to Harvard to pursue Ph. D. studies and then returned to Kenya.
His mother married Lolo Soetoro, another East–West Center student from Indonesia. In 1967, the family moved to Jakarta, where Obama’s half-sister Maya Soetoro–Ng was born. Obama attended schools in Jakarta, where classes were taught in the Indonesian language.
Four years later when Barack (commonly known throughout his early years as "Barry") was ten, he returned to Hawaii to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Dunham, and later his mother (who died of ovarian cancer in 1995).
He was enrolled in the fifth grade at the esteemed Punahou Academy, graduating with honors in 1979. He was only one of three black students at the school. This is where Obama first became conscious of racism and what it meant to be an African–American.
In his memoir, Obama described how he struggled to reconcile social perceptions of his multiracial heritage. He saw his biological father (who died in a 1982 car accident) only once (in 1971) after his parents divorced. And he admitted using alcohol, marijuana and cocaine during his teenage years.
After high school, Obama studied at Occidental College in Los Angeles for two years. He then transferred to Columbia University in New York, graduating in 1983 with a degree in political science.
After working at Business International Corporation (a company that provided international business information to corporate clients) and NYPIRG, Obama moved to Chicago in 1985. There, he worked as a community organizer with low-income residents in Chicago’s Roseland community and the Altgeld Gardens public housing development on the city’s South Side.
I HOPE HE WILL BE ABLE TO RESTABLISH THE IMAGE OF AMERICA AS A REAL DEMOCRATIC COUNRTY>
Sunday, January 18, 2009
- पार्टी नाम : एकीकृत नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी (माओवादी)
- एक सय बीस सदस्यीय केन्द्रीय समिति
गणतन्त्र नेपालका दुई ठूला क्रान्तिकारी कम्युनिष्ट पार्टीहरूबीच सोमबार एकता भएको छ । दश वर्षे सशस्त्र जनयुद्धको कुशल नेतृत्व गरेको नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी -माओवादी) र राजतन्त्रविरोधी शान्तिपूर्ण संघर्षमा सबै राजनीतिक दलहरूलाई समन्वयकारी भूमिका निर्वाह गर्न सफल भएको नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी -एकताकेन्द्र-मसाल)बीच भएको यो एकताले नेपालमा कम्युनिष्टहरूको एउटै केन्द्र निर्माण गर्ने अभियानको सुरुवात भएको छ । । साथै यो एक्ताले नेपाली नयाँ जनवादी क्रान्तिलाई सफलतासम्म पुर्याउन सक्षम हुने विश्वास क्रान्तिकारी कम्युनिष्टहरूले गरेका छन् ।
यो एकताको सन्देश विश्वभरि फैलिएपछि विश्वभरिका क्रान्तिकारीहरूमा नयाँ आशा र उत्साह थपिनेछ । साथै वाम विश्लेषकहरूका अनुसार संशोधनवाद र सुधारवादमार्फत नेपाली कम्युनिष्ट आन्दोलनलाई टुटफुट गरिरहेको साम्राज्यवादको यो एकताबाट निद हराम हुने छ । सिद्धान्त र विचारधारामा समानता भएका सच्चा कम्युनिष्ट पार्टीहरूबीच एकता र ध्रुवीकरण हुनु वर्तमानको अपरिहार्य आवश्यकता पनि हो । यो एकताले विभिन्न समूहमा रहेका सच्चा कम्युनिष्टहरूलाई एउटै साझा केन्द्रमा आउन प्रेरणा मिल्नेछ ।
नेकपा -माओवादी) र नेकपा -एकताकेन्द्र-मसाल)बीच एकता भएपछि अब पार्टीको नाम एकीकृत नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी -माओवादी) भएको छ । र, यो पार्टीको पथप्रदर्शक सिद्धान्त माक्र्सवाद-लेनिनवाद-माओवाद- माओविधारधारा हुने भएको छ । पूर्व नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी -माओवादी)ले संश्लेषण गरेको नेपाली क्रान्तिको विशिष्ट विचार श्रृंखला 'प्रचण्डपथ’ अब पार्टीको आन्तरिक बहसको विषय बनाइने निर्णय यसअघि नै माओवादीले गरिसकेको छ ।
एकीकृत नेकपा (माओवादी)को केन्द्रीय समिति
एकीकृत नेकपा (माओवादी)को नेतृत्वमा पूर्व नेकपा (माओवादी)बाट अध्यक्ष प्रचण्ड, डा.बाबुरा भट्टराई, मोहन वैद्य, रामबहादुर थापा, पोष्टबहादुर बोगटी, सीपी गजुरेल, देव गुरुङ, कृष्णबहादुर महरा, टोपबहादुर रायमाझी, वर्षमान पुन, नन्दकिशोर पुन, चन्द्रप्रसाद खनाल, जनार्दन शर्मा, राम कार्की, गोपाल किराती, हरिबोल गजुरेल, अग्नि सापकोटा, पम्फा भुसाल, हिसिला यमि, हितराज पाण्डे, लेखराज भट्ट, देवेन्द्र पौडेल, खड्गबहादुर विश्वकर्मा, मातृका यादव, हरिभक्त काडेल, धर्मेन्द्र बास्तोला र इन्द्रमोहन सिग्देल हुनुहुन्छ भने पूर्व एकताकेन्द्र-मसालबाट महासचिव प्रकाश, नरबहादुर कर्माचार्य, अमिक शेरचन, स्वनाम, गिरिराजमणि पोखरेल, दिलबहादुर श्रेष्ठ, निनु चापागाईं, भीमप्रसाद गौतम र लीलामणि पोखरेल, घनश्याम शर्मा पौड्याल, विश्वनाथ साह, रामकुमार यादव, दीपबहादुर योन्जन, धर्मचन्द लावती, विश्वभक्त दलाल -आहूति), ईश्वरी भट्टराई, शशी श्रेष्ठ, प्रहृलाद बुढाथोकी, कमानसिंह लामा, डिआर पौडेल, कर्णध्वज केसी, पेशल खतिवडा, राजु खड्का, किसन शर्मा, प्रकाश पोखरेल, अन्जना विशंखे, धावा लामा, जगत कार्की र माधव कोइराला रहनुभएको जनाइएको छ ।
यसैगरी पूर्व नेकपा -माओवादी)ले थप गरेका केन्द्रीय सदस्यहरूमा एन.के. प्रसाई, हर्षबहादुर शाही, जीतवीर लामा, केशव नेपाल, कृष्ण केसी, भीमबहादुर कडायत, सर्वोत्तम डंगोल, टीका हमाल, भरत बम, कृष्णध्वज खड्का, रेखा शर्मा, हिमाल राई, जयपुरी घर्ती, सन्तोष बुढामगर, रामचरण चौधरी, पूर्ण घर्ती, श्रीराम ढकाल, ध्रुव पराजुली, गंगा कार्की, सूर्य सुवेदी, सन्तु दराई, नारायण दाहाल, वामदेव क्षेत्री, अमृता थापामगर, यशोदा सुवेदी, खगराज भट्ट, भक्तबहादुर शाह, चन्द्रहरि सुवेदी, सुरेश आलेमगर, ईश्वरी दाहाल, दिनेश शर्मा, अनिल शर्मा, गंगा श्रेष्ठ, दिलिप प्रजापति, महेश्वर दाहाल, मायाप्रसाद शर्मा, कालीबहादुर मल्ल, दीपेन्द्र पुन, सरला रेग्मी, टेकबहादुर बस्नेत, महेश्वर गहतराज, गणेशमान पुन, कमला रोका, तेजबहादुर वली, कालीबहादुर खाम, झक्कु सुवेदी, जोखबहादुर महरा, धनबहादुर मास्के मगर, रामप्रसाद बन्जाडे, डोरप्रसाद उपाध्याय, उमा भुजेल, हरि अधिकारी, श्रीनाथ अधिकारी, पुष्पविक्रम मल्ल, भक्ति पाण्डे, हितबहादुर तामाङ, कृष्णप्रसाद सापकोटा, कुमार दाहाल, पवनमान श्रेष्ठ, प्रभु साह, कृष्णदेव सिंह, श्रवण यादव, पदम राई, गौरीशंकर खड्का, सावित्रीकुमार कापले, टंकबहादुर आबुहाङ, विकेश श्रेष्ठ, ओनसरी घर्ती रहेका छन् । यसमा अझै थप हुने सम्भावना छ ।
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Israeli military forces have killed over 540 Palestinians and injured more than 2,450 in the last ten days. Many civilians have been amongst the dead and wounded, including women and children. Targets have included the Islamic University campus, schools, the United Nations Relief & Works Agency buildings (killing 8 students and wounding 19), many mosques and an ambulance. According to the UN, over 13,000 Palestinians have been forced to flee their homes. 4 Israeli citizens have been killed in the last ten days by rockets fired from Gaza.
The Gazan people were already suffering a crippling humanitarian crisis before Israel’s military offensive began. For more than a year Israel has closed Gaza’s borders, which has prevented food, vital medical supplies and other basic necessities entering Gaza. Since the beginning of Israel’s attack, this crisis has deepened. International aid organisations have been unable to enter Gaza with sufficient medical and food supplies to treat the wounded and feed the starving – threatening the lives of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians.
On New Year’s Eve, Israel defied calls from international leaders, rejecting a proposal from France (as EU President) for a 48 hour ceasefire to allow humanitarian aid to enter Gaza.
Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators around the world have demanded an end to Israel’s violent assault. On 3rd January, 50,000 marched through the streets of London and several hundred gathered outside Sheffield Town Hall.
What can I do?
Join our Campaign
The Students’ Union is working with the Palestine Society, Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign and others to raise awareness of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and to campaign for Israel to stop its assault. For up to date information of how you can get involved with our campaign and support the people of Palestine please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or join the facebook group ‘Sheffield Students Against Israel’s Attack on Gaza’
Hundreds of thousands of people have joined demonstrations across the world to make their voices heard. A national demonstration has been called on Saturday, 10th January in London (see below). Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign will be holding a vigil outside the Town Hall every Saturday at 12:00pm until the killing stops. We will tell you about future plans for protests.
Contact your MP
Demand that they push the government and/or their party to clearly condemn the attack on Gaza. Find your MP at www.theyworkforyou.com
Monitor the media
Newspapers, TV channels and radio stations have given biased accounts of Israel's attack. They have understated the hugely disproportionate nature of the death toll and favoured Israeli spokespeople over Palestinian ones. Phone in to complain or write a letter or email. TV and radio have laws governing balanced reporting, especially the BBC, so they have to take your concern on board.
See the ENGAGE guide for more information on how to do these things and more.