Sunday March 08,08
Sadly, it was not the end of their gruelling journey as they are finding life difficult at the border.
Press TV reports that leaders of the convoy including George Galloway and deputy leader Talat Ali and Nazir are in intense negotiations with the Egyptians. Reports coming to us suggest that they expect every vehicle to be allowed to cross today.
The Souad Viva Palestina convoy is entering the town of El Arich after a long trek of 10 hours on the roads and motorways of Egypt.
Gaza is within touching distance and the dreams and aspirations of so many members of this magnificent adventure will be realised tomorrow when they enter Gaza carrying not only aid, but also the hopes of the millions to see the siege broken.
Saturday March 07,08
Today, the convoy members had to endure a hard journey as they were escorted throughout by the Egyptian authorities who dictated a pace that was extremely frustrating. They only stopped on a couple of occasions after setting off from Jamsa – and did not stop as planned at the El Salam Bridge.
According to the Palestinian Information Centre bulletin this evening, the ‘Justice for Palestine’ Scottish convoy managed to get into Gaza late this afternoon after the Egyptian authorities gave permission for the crossing to take place at Rafah.
Justice for Palestine
The New York Times April 6, 2009
JERUSALEM ? The right-wing coalition of the new Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, does not bode well for Palestinians in Israel. With the appointment of Avigdor Lieberman as foreign minister, the extremists are going after the indigenous population and threatening us with loyalty tests and the possibility of ?transfer? into an area nominally controlled by the Palestinian Authority. Read more
One of the creators of the successful Israeli movie Waltz with Bashir has produced a new animated film to highlight the continued blockade of the Gaza Strip and its 1.5 million Palestinian residents.
Yoni Goodman, who was director of animation for the Golden Globe-winning movie, said he was motivated to take part in the project by the recent war in Gaza. His 90-second animation, Closed Zone, follows a young boy chasing a bird through the Gaza Strip who finds his way out blocked at every turn. Read more
The conference in the Iranian capital meant to counter an international meeting in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik on Monday that gave a powerful boost to Hamas’ rival, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
The gathering in Egypt also raised $5.2bn in pledges to rebuild Gaza after Israel’s recent offensive but the funds will bypass the coastal strip’s Hamas rulers.
Hamas wasn’t invited to the Egyptian meeting and is considered a terrorist group by the Unites States, Europe and Israel. Iran, like Hamas, doesn’t recognize Israel and is the militant group’s chief political and financial backer.
? Court looks at whether Palestinians can bring case
? International pressure grows over conflict
Peter Beaumont and agencies
The international criminal court is considering whether the Palestinian Authority is “enough like a state” for it to bring a case alleging that Israeli troops committed war crimes in the recent assault on Gaza.
The deliberations would potentially open the way to putting Israeli military commanders in the dock at The Hague over the campaign, which claimed more than 1,300 lives, and set an important precedent for the court over what cases it can hear.
As part of the process the court’s head of jurisdictions, part of the office of the prosecutor, is examining every international agreement signed by the PA to decide whether it behaves – and is regarded by others – as operating like a state.
Following talks with the Arab League’s head, Amr Moussa, and senior PA officials, moves have accelerated inside the court to deliver a ruling on whether it may be able to insist on jurisdiction over alleged war crimes perpetrated in Gaza, with a decision from the prosecutor’s office expected within “months, not years”. Read more