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International Witnesses speak out from GazaFor Immediate

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      01-18-2009, 08:56 PM

International Witnesses speak out from GazaFor Immediate

Release Date : 12-27-2008

(Besieged Gaza, Palestine - 27th December 2008) - Human Rights
Defenders from Lebanon, the UK, Poland, Canada, Spain, Italy and
Australia are present in Gaza and are witnessing and ********ing the
current Israeli attacks on Gaza.

Due to Israel's policy of denying access to international media, human
rights defenders and aid agencies to the Occupied Gaza Strip, many of
these Human Rights Defenders arrived in Gaza with the Free Gaza
Movement's boats. FREE GAZA boats have broken Israel's siege of Gaza
five times in the past four months.

"At the time of the attacks I was on Omar Mukhtar street and witnessed
a last rocket hit the street 150 meters away where crowds had already
gathered to try to extract the dead bodies. Ambulances, trucks, cars -
anything that can move is bringing injured to the hospitals. Hospitals
have had to evacuate sick patients to make room for the injured. I
have been told that there is not enough room in the morgues for the
bodies and that there is a great lack of blood in the blood banks. I
have just learned that among the civilians killed today was the mother
of my good friends in Jabalya camp."

- Eva Bartlett (Canada) International Solidarity Movement
"Israeli missles tore through a children's playground and busy market
in Diere Balah, we saw the aftermath - many were injured and some
reportedly killed. Every Hospital in the Gaza strip is already
overwhelmed with injured people and does not have the medicine or the
capacity to treat them. Israel is committing crimes against humanity,
it is violating international and human rights law, ignoring the
United Nations and planning even bigger attacks. The world must act
now and intensify the calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions
against Israel; governments need to move beyond words of condemnation
into an active and immediate restraint of Israel and a lifting of the
siege of Gaza"

- Ewa Jasiewicz (Polish and British) Free Gaza Movement
"The morgue at the Shifa hospital has no more room for dead bodies, so
bodies and body parts are strewn all over the hospital."

- Dr. Haidar Eid, (Palestinian, South African) Professor of Social and
Cultural Studies, Al Aqsa University Gaza
"The bombs began to fall just as the children were on the streets
walking back from school. I went out onto the stairs and a terrified 5
year old girl ran sobbing into my arms."

- Sharon Lock (Australian) International Solidarity Movement
"This is incredibly sad. This massacre is not going to bring security
for the State of Israel or allow it to be part of the Middle East. Now
calls of revenge are everywhere."

- Dr. Eyad Sarraj - President of the Gaza Community Mental Health
"As I speak they have just hit a building 200 metres away. There is
smoke everywhere. This morning I went to the building close to where I
live in Rafah that had been hit. Two bulldozers were immediately
attempting to clear the rubble. They thought they had found all the
bodies. As we arrived one more was found."

- Jenny Linnel (British) International Solidarity Movement
"The home I am staying in is across from the preventive security
compound. All the glass of the house shattered. The home has been
severely damaged. Due to the siege there is no glass or building
materials to repair this damage. One little boy in our house fainted.
An eight year little boy was trembling on the ground for an hour. In
front of our house we found the bodies of two little girls under a
car, completely burnt. They were coming home from school. This is more
than just collective punishment. We are being treated like laboratory
animals. I have lived through the Israeli bombardment of Beirut and
the Israel's message is the same in Gaza as it was in Beirut- The
killing of civilians. There was just another explosion outside!"
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