Tuesday, July 18, 2006

UNISON calls for peace in the Middle East

According to today's news on the website and in line with our policy, UNISON believes there should be an immediate ceasefire on all sides in the Middle East and that both the Israeli and Palestinian hostages, including elected parliamentarians and government ministers, should be unconditionally released.The rapid escalation of events in the Middle East is causing huge suffering to civilians - men, women and children - and to the cause of peace. Whilst Israel has the right to exist within secure borders and to defend itself against attack, its totally disproportionate use of force against the Palestinian people could lead to the collapse of the Lebanese government with the threat of renewed civil war.Our government should take a more robust stance, insist on a return to the Road-Map by all parties and support the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement and the sale of arms if Israel fails to comply. Check www.unison.org.uk.

Labour leadership contender, John McDonnell puts it well in my opinion;
"Britain could play an important role in preventing the further escalation of this conflict and in laying out the terrain for its resolution.Israel is only influenced in any meaningful way by the US. Britain must now call upon the US administration to make it patently clear that it does not support the present Israeli military action and that consequences for the Israeli/US relationship would follow if Israel persists in its attacks on Lebanon and Palestine.Britain, along with its European peace allies, should now seek a mediating role via the UN. First, to negotiate a ceasefire and subsequently the handing over of prisoners from both sides.There is a possibility that we could assist all parties to this conflict to step back from the brink. But we can only succeed in playing this role if Britain is demonstrably seen to be independent of the Bush administration. " See www.john4leader.org.uk.

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