[News] Cynthia McKinney Taken Captive By Israeli Navy

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Tue Jun 30 10:42:39 EDT 2009

Cynthia McKinney Reportedly Taken Captive By Israeli Navy


June 30th, 2009 by Ronald Hardy

The latest from <http://www.freegaza.org/>www.freegaza.org reports 
that the humanitarian vessel Spirit of Humanity has been attacked and 
boarded by the Israelis 23 miles off the coast of Gaza. Former US 
Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney is among 
the 21 human rights workers taken prisoner off the ship.

miles off the coast of Gaza, 15:30pm] - Today Israeli Occupation 
Forces attacked and boarded the Free Gaza Movement boat, the SPIRIT 
OF HUMANITY, abducting 21 human rights workers from 11 countries, 
including Noble laureate Mairead Maguire and former U.S. 
Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (see below for a complete list of 
passengers). The passengers and crew are being forcibly dragged toward Israel.

"This is an outrageous violation of international law against us. Our 
boat was not in Israeli waters, and we were on a human rights mission 
to the Gaza Strip," said Cynthia McKinney, a former U.S. 
Congresswoman and presidential candidate. "President Obama just told 
Israel to let in humanitarian and reconstruction supplies, and that's 
exactly what we tried to do. We're asking the international community 
to demand our release so we can resume our journey."

According to an International Committee of the Red Cross report 
released yesterday, the Palestinians living in Gaza are "trapped in 
despair." Thousands of Gazans whose homes were destroyed earlier 
during Israel's December/January massacre are still without shelter 
despite pledges of almost $4.5 billion in aid, because Israel refuses 
to allow cement and other building material into the Gaza Strip. The 
report also notes that hospitals are struggling to meet the needs of 
their patients due to Israel's disruption of medical supplies.

"The aid we were carrying is a symbol of hope for the people of Gaza, 
hope that the sea route would open for them, and they would be able 
to transport their own materials to begin to reconstruct the schools, 
hospitals and thousands of homes destroyed during the onslaught of 
"Cast Lead". Our mission is a gesture to the people of Gaza that we 
stand by them and that they are not alone" said fellow passenger 
Mairead Maguire, winner of a Noble Peace Prize for her work in 
Northern Ireland.

Just before being kidnapped by Israel, Huwaida Arraf, Free Gaza 
Movement chairperson and delegation co-coordinator on this voyage, 
stated that: "No one could possibly believe that our small boat 
constitutes any sort of threat to Israel. We carry medical and 
reconstruction supplies, and children's toys. Our passengers include 
a Nobel peace prize laureate and a former U.S. congressperson. Our 
boat was searched and received a security clearance by Cypriot Port 
Authorities before we departed, and at no time did we ever approach 
Israeli waters."

Arraf continued, "Israel's deliberate and premeditated attack on our 
unarmed boat is a clear violation of international law and we demand 
our immediate and unconditional release."

For more information contact:
Greta Berlin (English)
tel: +357 99 081 767 / friends at freegaza.org This e-mail address is 
being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Caoimhe Butterly (Arabic/English/Spanish):
tel: +357 99 077 820 / sahara78 at hotmail.co.uk This e-mail address is 
being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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