CALL TO ACTION from the Tahrir, July 19:

Israel has boarded the Dignité, Canadian Stephan Corriveau on board

We Will Not Let Israel Control Palestinian or International Waters

It is imperative that we mobilize in order to ensure that Israeli and the Canadian governments know that the world is watching, and that we demand that all passengers and crew of the Dignité be released so as to continue their legal travel to Gaza. Supporters of the Flotilla and the Palestinians of Gaza need to press for the Dignité delegation and the boat to be freed. There is no legal reason for Israel to stop the Dignité and detain its crew and passengers. The Dignité was in international waters when boarded in which Israel has no legal jurisdiction.

We are calling on supporters and all concerned people to hold public demonstrations and to contact Israeli and Canadian government representatives.

1. We ask people to write Canadian MPs, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Opposition critics to demand that Canada condemn Israel’s illegal actions and to remind them of Canada’s Consular obligations with regards to Canadians in international environments. Tell them that the obligations are clearly established in international law and, more specifically, under the terms of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, to which Canada is a signatory.

2. Keep up local actions, which might include vigils, demonstrations at consulates or embassies or government offices, or other creative actions aimed at drawing public attention to the situation.

3. Continue tweeting and using social networking to spread messages and images far and wide.

The Israeli government needs to know that we know what they are doing and we won’t be silent. We know and the world knows that their actions are illegal.

The Canadian Government needs to know that we know they are complicit in these illegal acts. And that they have a responsibility by international convention, to protect Canadians involved in legal actions, such as the Flotilla and specifically the journey of the Dignité. Included in the letter is a note of disgust that Canadian government is giving in to pressure by the Israeli government. Below, there is a template letter to Canadian MPs and a link for their contact information.

ACTIONS

– Public rallies, vigils, etc: Please, do whatever and wherever you are able. We need this to be big. We need to be visible.

– Letter to our Canadian MPs: We have a letter template for you to use to send to MPs reminding them that the Canadian government has obligations under the Geneva Convention.

TEMPLATE LETTERS AND CONTACT INFORMATION

1. Letter to Canadian MPs

[feel free to edit using your own words]
Click here to find you MP’s contact information

[MP for your RIDING]
[DATE — do it today!]

Dear [NAME of MP in your riding]:

I am writing to you as a concerned Canadian about the alarming news that vessel “The Dignité” bound for the Gaza Strip has been boarded in international waters and the passengers and crew have been detained by the Israeli government. One of the passengers, Stéphan Corriveau is Canadian and was on that boat.

The Dignité, along with the other boats, such as Canada’s Tahrir, are part of the Freedom Flotilla, which is an international initiative with the goal of challenging the illegal blockade of Gaza, and bringing humanitarian aid to the civilian population of Gaza in the spirit of the U.N. Security Council Resolution 1860 (2009). The Dignité and the Flotilla in general, are not breaking the law but are actively upholding international law. Respected organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross have stated clearly that all states have an obligation to facilitate all humanitarian convoys to the Gaza Strip.

I am deeply concerned that the Canadian government is giving in to pressures from the Israeli government in preventing the Flotilla from sailing to Gaza by referring to this action as “provocative”. By doing so, the Canadian government is implying that the Israeli government is acting within its right when imposing an inhumane siege on 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza and seeking to control international waters.

As the MP of my riding I urge you to speak out publicly and without delay for the legitimate right of Canadians on the Flotilla to actively express their solidarity with the Palestinians of Gaza, as well as

– to demand the Government to uphold its responsibility for the safety of all Canadians including Stephan Corriveau, a passenger on the Dignité;

– to demand the Israeli government immediately release the Dignité and implement all necessary measures for the safety of the its passengers and to allow, as is their legal right, the Dignité to continue, unhindered, its journey to Gaza;

– to condemn this act of illegal agression or state piracy by the Israeli military

– to demand the Israeli government to abide to international law by removing the illegal blockade of Gaza

I look forward to hearing from you what actions you have taken on the above.

Sincerely,

[name]
[contact information]

2. Letter to Israeli Officials in Canada and in Israel

Sample letter addressed to Israeli authorities (consular and government)

[MP for your RIDING]
[DATE — do it today!]

Dear Sir/Madam:

I am writing to you as a concerned Canadian citizen who has just learned that the Dignité, one of the boats that is part of the Freedom Flotilla, has been illegally boarded – and the passengers and crew detained in international waters. As you well know, Israel has no legal jurisdiction in international waters, and thus has committed what is understood in international law as an act of illegal agression or state piracy.

The Freedom Flotilla is an international initiative with the goal of ending the illegal blockade of Gaza and to bring humanitarian aid to the civilian population of Gaza in the spirit of the U.N. Security Council Resolution 1860 (2009).

All participants on the Dignité are committed to peaceful and non-violent action. Their intention is to break your illegal blockade of Gaza. Their intention is not to break the law but to uphold international law, something which the Israeli government – as it purports to be a democracy – ought to be embracing.

I look forward to hearing what steps you will take to hold your government accountable for its illegal actions. I also expect to have impartial confirmation that all passengers and crew of the Dignité are receiving the proper treatment as is directed in the Vienna and Geneva conventions, to which your government is a signatory.
Sincerely,

[your contact information]

Some Israel contact emails & phone numbers:

Montreal: 1.514.940.8500
Ottawa: info@ottawa.mfa.gov.il / 1.613.567.6450
Toronto: 1.416.640.8500

Prime Minister’s Office: media@it.pmo.gov.il
Foreign Media Spokesman Mark Regev: mark.regev@it.pmo.gov.il
Foreign Press Coordinator David Baker: david.baker@it.pmo.gov.il
Ministry of Defense: mediasar@mod.gov.il
Spokesperson for the Minister Shlomo Dror: dover@mod.gov.il

Ministry for Foreign Affairs:
Spokesman YigalPalmor: palmor@mfa.gov.il
Deputy Shachar Arieli: shachar.arieli@mfa.gov.il
Deputy Andy David: andy.david@mfa.gov.il
Foreign Press Dept: Sharon Goldhammer: sharong@press.pmo.gov.il
Foreign Press visitors: Jason Pearlman: jason@press.pmo.gov.il

Or cut and paste the following into the bcc field of your email program to send an email to all of the above officials:

media@it.pmo.gov.il; mark.regev@it.pmo.gov.il; david.baker@it.pmo.gov.il; mediasar@mod.gov.il; dover@mod.gov.il; palmor@mfa.gov.il; shachar.arieli@mfa.gov.il; andy.david@mfa.gov.il; sharong@press.pmo.gov.il; jason@press.pmo.gov.il

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