By Roni Drukan Monday, December 13, 2010
A large Asian aid convoy called the Asia to Gaza Solidarity Caravan left India for the Gaza Strip with about 500 activists from 17 Asian countries. While convoy organizers try to position their action as solidarity with the Palestinian people under a unified umbrella of Asian countries, the convoy include militant activists that have been injured in the Marmara Gaza flotilla convoy.
Considering the Marmara activists were armed and ready to attack IDF soldiers, these are not peaceful activists.
The convoy set out from India to Pakistan and have now reached Iran.
They plan to travel to the cities of Qom, Tehran, Zanjan, and Tabriz and then cross into Turkey. Here is the rest of their journey:
They would like to arrive to the Gaza region towards the end of December, 2 years after operation Cast Lead began to stop Hamas’ rocket attacks on Israeli civilians.
As they travel through Iran, motorcyclists waving the Hezbollah flag, the Palestinian flag and the Iranian flag escort them. A five-year-old girl with a pink placard that shows dismembered bodies and shouts “Death to Israel” is the center of attention. The attitude is anti Israeli and anti US’ and western “imperialism”
Iran is by far, the loudest state supporter of this flotilla, not a promising indication about the peaceful agenda of its organizers.
The head of the Indian delegation, who preferred not to reveal his name in the press, hailed Iran’s role in supporting the Palestinian people, and reiterated that support for the oppressed people has been institutionalized in Iran. As we all know, Iran may stand up for the rights of the Palestinians in Gaza, but it does a great job oppressing the Iranians back home.
“The settlement of the Palestinian issue and wiping the Zionist regime off the occupied territories is a humane and global responsibility,” Ahmadinejad said in a meeting with members of the Asian continent’s first humanitarian aid convoy to Gaza in Tehran on Monday.
Stressing that existence of the Zionist regime is the most important problem for humanity today, he said, “The behavior of the usurper regime is an insult to all human beings and man’s identity has been despised by this regime.”
Ahmadinejad also referred to the genocide of the oppressed Palestinians by the Israeli regime, and said, “Humiliating human beings, terrorizing them, depriving a nation of its basic rights and captivity of people are happening in Palestine today.”
The Asian People’s Solidarity for Palestine (APSP) convoy, which plans to travel through Iran to Turkey, arrived in the capital city of Tehran on Sunday.
The convoy arrived in Iran on Wednesday after completing its land journey in India.
A number of 55 activists accompany the Asian Gaza Solidarity Caravan, organized by the Asian People’s Solidarity for Palestine, a coalition of social movements, trade unions and civil society institutions of the region.
The current members of the caravan are from India, Pakistan, Japan, Nepal, Malaysia and Singapore and the latest reports said that a large number of activists from Iran, Bahrain, Turkey, Australia and Azerbaijan are expected to join them.
Thirty-two Indians and eight others from Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Japan were not allowed by the Indian Border Security Force to cross over to Pakistan on foot for want of an NoC from New Delhi and they took a flight to Iran.
The convoy plans to donate medical aid and two ambulances to the authorities in Palestine.
The Asian peace activists hope that the move would provide a good opportunity for breaking the siege of Gaza.
The move came nearly seven months after Israeli forces raided the Gaza Freedom Flotilla on May 31. Over 100 Israeli soldiers supported by military choppers boarded a Turkish ship, Mavi Marmara, leading the six-ship convoy in international waters.
The Israeli commandoes killed 20 international human rights activists and wounded 80 more. Nine of the victims were Turkish nationals. Some members of the European parliaments, former western diplomats, reporters and human rights activists were among the victims of Israel’s brutal act.
The siege of Gaza started in June 2007 when Israel imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip. This was supported by the governments of Egypt and the US.
|TEHRAN, Dec. 12, 2010 – The Zionist regime of Israel is on the verge of collapse, Ayatollah Makarem Shirzai said in a meeting with the members of the Asian People’s Solidarity for Palestine convoy in Qom on Sunday.|
|The senior cleric said imposing siege on Gaza was an unwise move, which made the Zionist regime ashamed in the whole world, according to Mehrnews.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirzai said the move by the Palestine convoy would remain in the history for ever.
In addition, Ayatollah Abdollah Javadi Amoli met with the members of the aid convoy on Sunday.
Javadi Amoli said helping the Gazans is of the utmost importance and should be a priority of the Islamic countries.
He also said that the Iranian media outlets should cover this great effort so that the whole world becomes aware of it.
The members of the humanitarian aid convoy began their journey to the besieged territory of Gaza in India, traveled through Pakistan, and then arrived in Sistan-Baluchestan Province in southern Iran on Wednesday. They entered Kerman Province on Thursday, traveled to Yazd Province, and arrived in Isfahan on Friday. They will continue their journey through Tehran, Zanjan, and Tabriz and then cross into Turkey.
The convoy is composed of people from different religions from India, Pakistan, Japan, Indonesia, Nepal, and Iran, including veterans from a number of wars.
In addition, there are some people in the convoy who were injured in Israel’s attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in spring 2010.