27 July 2014
Rochdale Green Party completely and unequivocally condemned Israel for its military actions in the Gaza strip at a massive rally at Rochdale Town Hall last Sunday. The ‘Stand Up For Palestine’ rally was attended by over 5,000 people with local roads having to close due to the higher than expected attendance. Local Green Party member Dawud Islam joined a panel of speakers which included local Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk as well as Imams, Rabbis and representatives from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and the Stop the War Coalition.
Speaking at the rally Islam said that the Muslim festival of Eid-ul-Fitr will look very different in Gaza to the one here in Rochdale: “Here Muslims can look forward to relaxing with family and friends with some good food and drink. In Gaza all they will have to look forward to this Eid is more bombings, maimings, killings, death and destruction”.
He went on to slam the BBC for its coverage of the events in the region; “If you watch the coverage on Al Jazeera and then on the BBC you would thinks you were watching two different conflicts. A YouGov poll shows that 85% of the British public think Israeli attacks on Gaza are unjustified so just who is the BBC speaking up for?”. He urged those at the rally to contact the corporation to complain.
He then quoted Green Party leader Natalie Bennett’s words to the rally: “Israel's attacks extend very far beyond any reasonable response to the Hamas rocket attacks. Killing hundreds of innocent civilians will worsen Israel’s security not strengthen it”.
Islam ended his speech with an emotional plea to the audience saying that whether Muslim or not we were all ‘one Ummah – one people’ “…and so when you attack my Ummah you attack me. When you attack hospitals and schools you attack MY hospital and MY school. When you attack family homes you attack MY family home and when you attack children and babies you attack MY children and MY babies. And I won’t stand for it and neither should you.
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