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Indian Peace Activist Underlines Vigorous, Continued Efforts to Free Gaza
  Head of the Indian delegation in the Asian continent's first humanitarian aid convoy to Gaza reiterated the movement's firm decision to continue struggles to free the people of Gaza from the Zionists' occupation and siege.
Reporter :
Monday 13 December 2010 14:52
Code : 39121
Indian Peace Activist Underlines Vigorous, Continued Efforts to Free Gaza
BFnews: The activist told: We fight for the return of peace and freedom to Palestine as long as necessary.

Referring to the activities made by the Asian People's Solidarity for Palestine (APSP) convoy, the Indian activist said: This is not a governmental move, rather it is considered as a popular move from Asia to the oppressed Gaza region.

The head of the Indian delegation, who preferred not to reveal his name in the interview, also hailed Iran's role in supporting the Palestinian people, and reiterated that support for the oppressed people has been institutionalized in Iran.

He added: Based on this spirit of campaign against cruelty and oppression, which exists among the Iranian people and government, the country now plays a key role in regional developments, specially in the Palestinian issue.

The Asian People's Solidarity for Palestine (APSP) convoy, which plans to travel through Iran to Turkey, arrived in the provincial capital city of Isfahan on Saturday.

The convoy arrived in Iran on Wednesday after completing its land journey in India.

A number of 55 activists accompany the Asian Gaza Solidarity Caravan, organized by the Asian People's Solidarity for Palestine, a coalition of social movements, trade unions and civil society institutions of the region.

The current members of the caravan are from India, Pakistan, Japan, Nepal, Malaysia and Singapore and the latest reports said that a large number of activists from Iran, Bahrain, Turkey, Australia and Azerbaijan are expected to join them.

Thirty-two Indians and eight others from Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Japan were not allowed by the Indian Border Security Force to cross over to Pakistan on foot for want of an NoC from New Delhi and they took a flight to Iran.

The convoy plans to donate medical aid and two ambulances to the authorities in Palestine.

The Asian peace activists hope that the move would provide a good opportunity for breaking the siege of Gaza.

The move came nearly seven months after Israeli forces raided the Gaza Freedom Flotilla on May 31. Over 100 Israeli soldiers supported by military choppers boarded a Turkish ship, Mavi Marmara, leading the six-ship convoy in international waters.

The Israeli commandoes killed 20 international human rights activists and wounded 80 more. Nine of the victims were Turkish nationals. Some members of the European parliaments, former western diplomats, reporters and human rights activists were among the victims of Israel's brutal act.

The siege of Gaza started in June 2007 when Israel imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip. This was supported by the governments of Egypt and the US.

The blockade consists of a land blockade along Gaza's borders with Egypt and Israel and a sea blockade. It immediately followed the 2006-2007 economic sanctions against the Palestinian National Authority following the election of Hamas to the Palestinian government.

The blockade has attracted criticism from many Human Rights organizations. September 2009 UN fact-finding mission found that the blockade of Gaza "amounted to collective punishment", was likely a war crime and a crime against humanity and recommended that the matter be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC).