KAIROS calls for an end to attacks on civilians and the start of a meaningful peace process between Israelis and Palestinians
KAIROS is deeply concerned about civilian casualties in a series of attacks that have taken place in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories over the last number of weeks.
These include the murder of Israeli settlers by unknown persons, and related retaliatory violence against Arabs in Israel; the death and injuries inflicted by a bombing in central Jerusalem; the continued deaths and injuries caused by Israel’s enforcement of the land and sea blockade of Gaza; and renewed hostilities between Gaza militants and the Israeli military.
The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem states that 151 Palestinians and 13 Israelis have been killed from January 2009 through January 2011. The vast majority have been civilians.
Such acts are both alarming and symptomatic of the violence that pervades the day to day lives of people living under Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank and blockade of Gaza. The absence of a true peace process, increased building of Israeli-only settlements in the occupied West Bank, and a tightening of the occupation in East Jerusalem stand in stark contrast to the mass calls for democratic change sweeping many countries in the region.
KAIROS condemns all these acts of violence, particularly the targeting and killing of civilians. We stand with our partners in the region who, in the midst of decades of pervasive violence, continue to reject any violent means of securing much- needed peace. We offer our prayers for the families of all killed and injured during the events of these last weeks.
Ultimately KAIROS joins with organizations around the world to seek an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the blockade of Gaza as critical steps to true security for both Israelis and Palestinians. We urge the Government of Canada and all people who seek peace to press for the start of a meaningful peace process.
We regret the recent US veto of a UN Security Council resolution which demanded that “Israel, as the occupying power, immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem and that it fully respect its legal obligations in this regard.” The US cast the only dissenting vote. The Israeli government’s repeated decision to permit and fund the expansion of settlements and related house demolitions in occupied East Jerusalem is one of the principal obstacles to any kind of peace process, and has been identified as such by KAIROS’ Israeli and Palestinian partners.
For more information please contact Julie Graham, program coordinator for campaigns and education, Dignity and Rights program. 1 877 403 8933 x233 or firstname.lastname@example.org