Our petition calling for the removing of Hamas — the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Motion — from the UK’s Proscribed Checklist of Terrorist Our bodies continues to draw signatures following the supply of the primary tranche of 1,410 letters to 10 Downing Avenue. The petition stays open and we’ll make a second supply when the quantity breaches the three,000 mark, and so forth for each 1,500 new signatories, till the Authorities agrees, in a marketing campaign which the petitioners know will in all probability take years. Particulars might be discovered at www.tiny.cc/hamas
The purpose of our doing an interim submission was twofold: to get publicity in order that extra would signal, which hasn’t actually labored, as no mainstream media outlet would cowl it; it was additionally to reassure individuals in regards to the legality and security of signing it.
On condition that pro-Palestine activists corresponding to Craig Murray, Tony Greenstein and Mick Napier have been arrested lately for declaring assist not directly for Hamas, I, as petitioner, was amazed and happy that I used to be allowed by Parliamentary police to ship the letters, together with fellow campaigners Moloy Hoque and Palestinian Zina Baird. I can solely surmise that it’s because I’ve at all times been cautious to remain on the appropriate facet of the legislation and have by no means declared any assist for Hamas. I stay freed from police consideration regardless of quite a few makes an attempt by journalist Heidi Bachram of the Jewish Chronicle and varied Zionist MPs to have me charged over my activism.
So, what’s the authorized place? The Terrorism Act 2000 gives that “any particular person affected by a proscription can submit a signed, written software to the House Secretary requesting that they contemplate whether or not a specified organisation needs to be faraway from the checklist of proscribed organisations.” Since all these in assist of Palestine are affected by the Hamas proscription, their petition signatures can’t be used in opposition to them. In truth, 72 of those that signed agreed to have their names revealed on their letters; the others have been redacted.
Individually from the letters, 30 individuals have submitted written purposes for Hamas’s de-proscription to the Head of Counter Terrorism Coverage on the House Workplace. We obtained the anticipated destructive reply.
In fact, the actual energy lies with Westminster, so extra lately signatories have been writing on to their MPs, making the identical arguments as within the petition: that Hamas is the democratically elected authorities of Palestine; and that Britain regards the occupation of Palestinian land by Israel as unsuitable, but by proscribing Hamas it excludes the political representatives of Palestinians, predominantly however not completely in Gaza, from conversations about options. Britain performed an enormous half in creating Israel, so it has a transparent ethical accountability to resolve the state of affairs and finish the Israeli occupation. The petition factors out that the UN doesn’t declare Hamas to be a terrorist motion as a result of UN Decision 37/43 of 1982 reaffirms the legitimacy of armed battle in opposition to colonial occupation and refers particularly to the rights of Palestinians.
In fact, the occasions of seven October are cited by the UK authorities as justification in refusing to think about de-proscription. It ignores the truth that it was a disciplined navy motion; navy personnel and settlers have been killed (Hamas considers settlers as a part of the occupation and a part of the Israel Defence Forces [IDF] and say that they aren’t civilians). Hamas has made clear that the goal on 7 October was revenge for assaults on Al-Aqsa Mosque and to seize Israeli troopers for the aim of a prisoner swap. Certainly, as I write this on 21 January, Hamas has launched a prolonged doc giving the reasoning behind the cross-border incursion. “[The] Palestinian fighters solely focused the occupation troopers and those that carried weapons in opposition to our individuals,” claims Hamas. “[If] there was any case of concentrating on civilians, it occurred by chance and in the middle of the confrontation with the occupation forces.” The motion’s account of Operation Al-Aqsa Flood might be downloaded right here.
Furthermore, our petition factors out that proof has come to mild that lots of those that died that day have been killed by the IDF underneath its “Hannibal” directive, which goals at stopping Israelis being taken alive into Palestinian arms.
Motorcyclists with Kalashnikov rifles couldn’t have burned out 70 vehicles or flattened these Kibbutz houses with Israelis and Palestinians inside. This harm was brought on by Apache helicopters firing Hellfire missiles at each automobile in sight, and Merkava battle tanks firing into occupied buildings. It’s important that Israeli Air Power Colonel Nof Erez has confirmed this. An IDF video of atrocities allegedly dedicated by Hamas proven to British MPs is, we belive, deceptive. Journalist Owen Jones experiences, for instance, that there is no such thing as a proof of infants being beheaded or of rape. While there might have been some conflict crimes dedicated by Palestinians, there is no such thing as a clear proof this was by Hamas fighters; it’s extra seemingly that it was all the way down to opportunistic people coming from Gaza, following Al-Qassam Brigade’s nineteen breaches proper alongside the border fence, which allowed different Palestinians to flee 16 years of an unlawful blockade. Petitioners have requested MPs to point what they make of the proof on our web site at www.onepalestine.land/hamas/#Debunking
The political wing of Hamas was proscribed simply two years in the past, following then House Secretary’s Priti Patel’s unofficial go to to Israel, previous to which the British authorities accepted that it was not a terrorist motion. The petition refers to Hamas’s “Doc of Basic Ideas and Insurance policies” of Could 2017 at www.tinyurl.com/hamaspolicies which states at level 16: “Hamas affirms that its battle is with the Zionist challenge, not with the Jews due to their faith. Hamas doesn’t wage a battle in opposition to the Jews as a result of they’re Jewish however wages a battle in opposition to the Zionists who occupy Palestine. But, it’s the Zionists who continuously establish Judaism and the Jews with their very own colonial challenge and unlawful entity.”
In level 20, Hamas declares “the institution of a totally sovereign and unbiased Palestinian state, with Jerusalem as its capital alongside the strains of the 4th of June 1967 border, with the return of the refugees and the displaced to their houses from which they have been expelled, to be a components of nationwide consensus.” The petition signatories level out that this place displays that of the UN in addition to the UK.
Lord Peter Hain noticed lately that Israel couldn’t destroy Hamas, regardless of what number of bombs it dropped. Lord Peter Rickets, the UK’s first nationwide safety adviser, mentioned that to destroy Hamas “appears to me to be unimaginable” because of the political and social nature of the organisation. Even Israeli conflict cupboard member and former Israel Defence Forces chief of employees Basic Gadi Eisenkot has advised Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a lot. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan shares this view, and believes that Hamas can’t be excluded from a everlasting answer.
As Britain’s troubled historical past in Northern Eire vividly demonstrates, noticed Hain, when politics doesn’t work, violence fills the vacuum. British governments refused for many years to formally negotiate with the Irish Republican Military (IRA) due to its bomb assaults. Nevertheless, once they lastly did so, it resulted within the 1998 Good Friday settlement and peace. It’s our perception that the UK must encourage the identical strategy for Palestine by together with Hamas in talks.
The motion gained 56 per cent of the seats within the 2006 Legislative Council election and shaped the Palestinian Authority, solely to face a boycott and an Israeli-CIA coup try. Though the Fatah motion gained simply 34 per cent of the seats, Israel and its Western allies caught with the present PA, with Fatah and PLO head Mahmoud Abbas as president. His time period of workplace expired in 2009, however he’s nonetheless there, having blocked recent elections for years. In the course of the current truce, the Palestinian Centre for Coverage and Survey Analysis carried out a survey into Palestinian attitudes each within the West Financial institution and Gaza Strip which discovered that nearly three-quarters (72 per cent) of all respondents consider that Hamas’s determination to launch its 7 October assault on Israel was “right”, given the context of many years of occupation and oppression by the hands of the state of Israel.
MPs are reminded that regardless of Israel’s wholesale slaughter in Gaza, assist for Hamas is rising; within the West Financial institution alone it has nearly quadrupled from 12 per cent. It appears that evidently with each Palestinian killed by Israel, assist for Hamas will increase, for Palestinians see no one else standing up for his or her rights and justice; they proceed to reject Fatah, whom they see as corrupt and in league with Israel. British MPs are requested to think about how reconciliation can happen by excluding the foremost participant within the Palestinian political sphere.
Our letters word that Tony Blair mentioned in 2017 that, “We have been unsuitable to boycott Hamas after its election win.” Furthermore, in response to the current definition of terrorism, the UK would have put the partisans preventing the Nazis in World Conflict Two on the proscribed checklist. Certainly, Britain’s 2003 invasion of Iraq additionally meets the “terrorist” standards.
If Hamas needs to be proscribed as a “terrorist” motion, why isn’t Israel? It’s now properly established that Israel has perpetrated atrocities approach in extra of something dedicated by Hamas: the massacres of 1948 and the ethnic cleaning of 750,000 Palestinians, and its persecution of the rest ever since, which has killed over 70,000 and injured many 1000’s extra; and the 1000’s who’ve been pushed from their houses. After 75 years of occupation, the indicators are that Palestinians are anticipated to endure evermore as sub-humans underneath an Israeli apartheid regime, or be ethnically cleansed from their homeland.
To this point one MP has responded: Dominic Raab is heralded by the Jewish Chronicle as one of many “Jewish… key movers and shakers” in Rishi Sunak’s cupboard. Raab replied to 1 constituent and mentioned: “Hamas is an organisation which requires the institution of an Islamic Palestinian state underneath Sharia legislation and has repeatedly known as for the destruction of Israel; it has lengthy been concerned in terrorist violence… Ministers recognise the reliable aspirations of the Palestinian individuals, however Hamas doesn’t characterize these aspirations. It provides nothing extra for the Palestinian individuals aside from extra terror and extra bloodshed.”
Raab conveniently ignores the truth that Hamas has mentioned that while it will want Sharia legislation, it should abide by the democratic will of the individuals in a free Palestine. He additionally ignores Israel’s state terrorism which kills Palestinians and steals their land and houses. He declares that Hamas doesn’t characterize the aspirations of the Palestinians, ignoring that they have been elected with a giant majority in what worldwide observers described as a “free and truthful” election.
So long as Hamas represents the bulk view for Palestinians, then it’s incumbent on organisations corresponding to ourselves at One Democratic Palestine to work to make sure the motion isn’t excluded from negotiations. Sadly, so long as Hamas exists and is supported by nearly all of Palestinians, Israel will use the “terrorist” label to justify the wholesale abuse of all Palestinians.
It is going to take years to persuade our flesh pressers that Hamas holds the important thing to peace in Palestine, however a begin has been made. It’s one which we campaigners will proceed, for so long as it takes to determine a brand new democratic state of Palestine.
The views expressed on this article belong to the creator and don’t essentially mirror the editorial coverage of Center East Monitor.
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