The Caribbean Against Apartheid in Palestine (CAAP) continued to condemn what the organization is describing as the latest aggression by the Israeli occupiers of Palestinian lands on the Palestinian people, with protest action outside the United States (US) Embassy today.
Secretary of CAAP Lalu Hanuman, who led the protest outside the Embassy, told the media that the venue was chosen because the American government has diplomatic relations with the apartheid state of Israel.
Hanuman added that all the weapons Israel is using have come from America, a country which he said has been blocking resolutions against Israel.
“Clearly this is unacceptable. Israel is an apartheid state. Nelson Mandela has said what is happening in Israel is worse than what has happened in apartheid, South Africa. So it is important for us to stress the apartheid angle. So it is important for us to stress the apartheid angle,” he said.
Hanuman, who two weeks ago presented a letter to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs requesting that Barbados establish diplomatic recognition of the state of Palestine, also indicated that it is important to note that Barbados, which took a lead opposing the apartheid movement in South Africa, is yet to recognize the state of Palestine.
The attorney-at-law again argued that as a people that endured slavery, Barbados should be leading the way in fighting for global human rights.
“What is happening in Palestine is a global legacy because it was the United Nations for which most of the countries in the world are members that have created this issue. So we all should be actively involved in resolving this issue.
“The only difference between Palestine and South Africa is ethnicity in terms of the victims and if that is the reason why Barbados is not in the vanguard opposing Israel, then I have to say that’s highly unfortunate and it shows in fact that Barbados is not opposed to apartheid and its only taking a position that serves its own interest in terms of demographics,” Hanuman said.
Secretary of the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration (CMPI) David Denny, who was also present at the protest, indicated that his organization was standing in solidarity with the people of Palestine at this difficult time in their country’s history. Denny also demanded that the Government of Barbados develop a diplomatic relationship with Palestine.
Denny explained that his movement would be playing a major role in educating West Indians about what is happening in Palestine, including children being killed. Denny also called on the local media to spread the word to the people of the region about the ongoing dispute.
“As a human being, if my brother or my sister or my child or anybody connected to me had to go through that kind of treatment I would be sad and I would feel the pain. And as a brother, as a human rights fighter for many years since the 1970s, I feel the pain when I go on CNN or BBC or any international network and I see the killing of the Palestine children and people,” Denny said.
There were not as many in attendance as when similar protest actions took place outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Culloden Road, St Michael office, however, several members of the Muslim community attended today’s event. (AH)