Artwork by Kyle Goen

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network condemns in the strongest terms the Israeli attack on Palestinians in Gaza on Monday, 30 October, that killed seven and wounded 14 more. We join the Palestinian people in mourning the lives that were taken and urge all supporters of Palestine around the world to join in the collective, popular response to these ongoing crimes by escalating actions and campaigns to support the liberation of Palestine and the Palestinian people.

We mourn the loss of: Arafat Abu Mirshid, Hasan Abu Hassanein, Omar Nassar al-Faleet, Ahmad Khalil Abu Armana, Husam Abdullah Samiri, Misbah Fayeq Shbeir, Mohammad Marwan al-Aqha, Badr Abo Msabeh, Mohammed Al-Bhaisi, Mohammed Mousa – their lives taken by siege and colonization in the struggle for the liberation of their people.

The attack targeted Palestinians involved in the resistance and the defense of their land from ongoing attacks and colonization. The targeting of the resistance is nothing new; it is the same policy that underlines assassination raids and the arrest and imprisonment of thousands of Palestinians, as well as “anti-terror” rhetoric that serves to criminalize Palestinian resistance to colonialism, occupation, apartheid, racism and war crimes.

This is only the latest attack on Gaza in a long procession of crimes: from the massive assaults of 2009, 2012 and 2014 to the past 10 years of siege, not to mention the prior 50 years of direct occupation of Gaza and 70 years of massacres, colonization, and ongoing resistance. 70 percent of the population of Gaza are Palestinian refugees denied their right to return for the past 70 years. And today, Palestinians in Gaza are not only fenced in on land and on sea by occupation forces on all sides, subject to constant overflight and threat of deadly bombs by drones, helicopters and jets, but also living a daily experience of human crisis – undrinkable water, no electricity, denied the ability to travel for work, school or even medical care.

Only days before, Tawfiq Abu Naim, a Gaza security official and a former Palestinian prisoner and resistance struggler, was himself subjected to an assassination attempt. The Israeli occupation state has repeatedly demonstrated its constant appetite for provocation, war and destruction directed against Palestinians in Gaza in an attempt to suppress Palestinian resistance, further devastate Palestinian resilience and shore up support for the extreme-right, racist government.

We cannot be silent or complacent about this latest crime. The United States, Canada, UK and European Union powers remain complicit in every attack on Palestinian lives and rights so long as they continue to provide Israel with economic, military and diplomatic support and attempt to further normalization of the Israeli occupation state with the most reactionary of Arab regimes under the guise of a “deal of the century.” This attack comes on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, the infamous colonial “promise” of Palestine to the Zionist Federation by the British government in 1917, an infamous anniversary being celebrated by the British government in joint colonial pomp by Theresa May alongside Benjamin Netanyahu as well as imperialist states around the world.

At the same time, this 100th anniversary is being met by protests, actions and events around the world organized by Palestinians, Palestine solidarity organizers and people of conscience who reject colonialism, apartheid and racism and stand with the Palestinian people and their right to resist and throw off colonization and achieve their freedom and liberation after 100 years of subjugation. We urge all supporters of Palestine to take to the streets and join the protests around the world against this shameful anniversary, one that highlights the depth of imperialist complicity in the ongoing war crimes against the Palestinian people.

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network will be participating in protests against this anniversary around the world in the coming days, for the strugglers fallen in Gaza, for all of the lives taken through 100 years of struggle, and for all the millions of Palestinians inside Palestine and around the world, and the thousands within Israeli jails whose steadfastness and commitment is a daily inspiration to continue the struggle for justice. We must respond to these ongoing crimes with a popular response that makes it clear that they will not pass unnoticed and accepted, from escalating the boycott of Israel and complicit corporations to creating a popular siege on the Israeli occupation to lift the siege on the Palestinian people, from Gaza, to all of Palestine and to every Palestinian refugee struggling to return home in liberation and freedom.