Saturday, July 11, 2009

Viva Palestina US update – July 11, 2009

Viva Palestina US update – July 11, 2009
The largest ever US humanitarian aid convoy is now gathering in Egypt to head across the border into Gaza on Monday, July 13. Vehicles are coming from Alexandria, the medical supplies from Cairo and the advanced party of nearly 100 US citizens is heading for the staging post of Al Arish, just before the border with Gaza.
That group, of four buses, has, however, been stopped from crossing over the Suez Canal and into the Sinai region, which leads to Gaza.
The buses, carrying people, medical aid and bearing US, Egyptian and Palestinian flags in a spirit of international cooperation, have been held at a security checkpoint and given various, conflicting reasons for why they cannot proceed to their destination at Al Arish.
New York Councilman Charles Barron is leading the group and is negotiating with security officials to resolve the situation. He has contacted Washington and other elected officials in an effort to clarify the reasons for the delay and address any concerns as efficiently as possible.
Former US Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney will join the convoy on Sunday, July 23, and British Member of Parliament George Galloway will also be heading to meet up with Councilman Barron and the advance group.
He and the rest of the advance group of the convoy, however, are insisting on their right to travel with their supplies to Al Arish, where the rest of the convoy is to rendezvous
with them before heading for the border crossing into Gaza.
This medical convoy is on the way to Gaza a month after US President Barack Obama described the situation in Gaza as a “humanitarian crisis.”
“Our convoy is on an aid mission,” says Galloway, “We come in peace; but we will not be stopped.”
Kevin Ovenden, Viva Palestina coordinator

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