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    Mumbai ‘Peace Meeting’ flays Israel for ‘bombardment and massacre’ in Gaza Strip

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    Mumbai, Dec 8 , Thousands of people converged at the Azad Maidan to flay Israel and express support to Palestine as the war rages in the Gaza strip with huge atrocities on the Palestinians trapped there, here on Friday.

    The gathering, ‘Shanti Sabha’ (Peace Meeting) was organised by the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi in which representatives of different religions joined and declared solidarity with the Palestinians while slamming Israel for the continued attacks in Gaza Strip.

    Speakers at the Peace Meeting, including VBA President Prakash Ambedkar, adopted a resolution, signed by various religious delegates expressing deep concerns and alarm over the ongoing genocide in Gaza Strip.

    It gave a call to the Central government to immediately condemn the attacks by Israel, show unconditional solidarity with Palestinians, a stop to the collective punishment on the civilians, and a permanent ceasefire there.

    The meeting noted that the bombarding by Israel on Gaza Strip for the past 50 days has killed more than 15,000 people including 10,000 women and children, making the ongoing ‘massacre the deadliest phase endured by the people of Palestine living in Gaza Strip’.

    “Thousands have been displaced by the indiscriminate bombardment, water, food, medicine, fuel and electricity supplies have been restricted. There can be no justification for this massacre, which is a collective punishment,” said the resolution.

    The Peace Meeting also frowned at India’s decision to abstain from the October 26 United Nations General Assembly resolution – calling for truce in Gaza – as ‘unprincipled’ especially since this country has a long tradition of supporting the Palestinian cause.

    They noted how, since the beginning of the conflict, pro-Israel rallies are being allowed in India, but rallies supporting Palestine are constantly met with a crackdown.

    “The social media is rife with content and rhetoric dehumanising the Palestinian people or the unimaginable horrors they are going through, which have put a question mark on India’s values and foreign policy towards Palestine. Our diplomatic stance should change,” said the resolution.

    It urged India – which has faced the cruelty of colonialism, to unequivocally support Palestine and as the leader of the Global South, take up the mantle of a peacemaker.

    The Peace Meeting made an 8-point appeal to the Indian government, and called for providing humanitarian assistance to alleviate the sufferings of the Palestinians, permitting protests against Israel’s dictatorship, unconditional solidarity with Palestine, a permanent shutdown in Gaza Strip, end to domestic efforts aimed at criminalising Palestinians.

    The signatories also sought protection and promotion of fundamental human rights, justice and accountability at the International Criminal Court (in The Netherlands), using diplomatic and political influence to bring both Israel-Palestine to the negotiation table and promoting the two-country solution of peace and security which India has always espoused.

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