Muslim group calls on PM – Sever diplomatic ties with Israel

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Palestine and TT flags were waved by people during a pro-Palestine rally on Sunday at Palms Club in San Fernando organised by the group Concerned Muslims of TT. PHOTO BY YVONNE WEBB – Y.Webb

A CALL has been made for the Government and Caricom to sever diplomatic ties with the State of Israel until all acts of aggression against Palestinians in Gaza are ended.

This call was made during a rally in solidarity with the people of Palestine on Sunday at Palms Club in San Fernando.

The call was made by Mufti Abraar Alli, the advisor to the Concerned Muslims of Trinidad and Tobago, who led the rally at Palms Club, which was also attended by officials from the Joint Trade Union Movement (JTUM), the Emancipation Support Committee, the Movement for Social Justice (MSJ) and others.

An appeal was also advanced to cut all trading links with Israel, with MSJ political leader David Abdulah calling for a boycott of any company or products whose origins are from Israel.

JTUM representative Ozzi Warwick said it is also time to end the economic blockade imposed since 2006 on Palestine.

Movement for Social Justice (MSJ) member Ozzie Warwick makes a forceful point while speaking at the pro-Palestine rally on Sunday at Palms Club in San Fernando. PHOTO BY YVONNE WEBB

“Palestine lives matters. Arab lives matters. Palestine must be free,” Warwick said as he raised a closed right fist in the air to express solidarity.

Concerned Muslims of TT PRO Imtiaz Mohammed said a letter will be sent on or before Wednesday to the Prime Minister asking for this country to disassociate itself from Israel and support an independent Palestine.

Mohammed said contained in that letter would also be a demand for the Rowley administration to remove the Star of David, which symbolises both Jewish identity and Judaism, from the  police emblem.

Shabaka Kambon, of the Emancipation Support Committee, congratulated Caricom for supporting the two-state solution to the Israel-Gaza conflict.

Kambon later slammed Israeli Ambassador to TT Itai Bardov, who had said he could not fathom how Caricom – in its statement on the conflict – could equate the “unprovoked” attack by Hamas on Israel with the latter’s military response in Gaza.

Kambon said the Emancipation Support Committee supported calls by several Muslim groups in TT for an end to the violence by Israel on Palestinians in Gaza.

“The siege of Gaza and the cutting off of water, fuel, medicine, electricity and other basic needs to the Palestinian people is a crime against humanity and against international law.

“So too is the bombing of food-distribution centres responsible for the food supplies of some 500,000 Palestinian refugees in Gaza,” Kambon said.

“The ESC supports the call for an end to violence, and a negotiated peace that results in a Palestinian state. We say that the world must be reminded that the occupation of Palestine by Israel was supposed to have been guided by respect for humanitarian law and international law, which actually gives the Palestinian people the right to an independent state,” he added.

Abdulah later called on the Government to revoke Bardov’s diplomatic credentials over his statements.