Friends of the Earth Scotland Statement on the violence in Israel and Palestine

As an organisation committed to peace and nonviolence we have watched with horror the unprecedented escalation in violence in Israel and Palestine. The killing of innocent people is never justified, and we mourn with those who have lost loved ones. 

There can be no justification for indiscriminate attacks on civilians, which are a breach of international humanitarian law. We condemn the attacks by Hamas on Israeli civilians and the violent actions of the Israeli state, including launching airstrikes into densely populated area of Gaza and the cutting off of water, food and power supplies.

While the brutality of the Israeli regime and the daily harms, deprivations and humiliations inflicted on the 2 million Palestinians in Gaza, the world’s largest open air prison, and across Palestine continues, there is no possibility of peace in the region. 

The silence of the international community on the plight of the Palestinian people and Israeli Government disregard for international law amounts to complicity in these crimes. The UK political establishment bears special responsibility for these horrors by providing full economic, military and political support for Israeli military occupation and aggressions. 

We condemn the actions of the Israeli state and of Hamas, and we stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people and  all those who work for peace and nonviolence, whatever their religion or background. We are also particularly thinking of colleagues at Friends of the Earth Palestine/ PENGON who campaign for land and water rights, and climate justice in the most challenging circumstances. 

We call for an immediate ceasefire, resumption of access to vital resources for those in Gaza and release of all hostages. 

In the longer term, we call for an end to illegal occupation and for a just peace that recognises the rights and human dignity of all those who live in Israel and Palestine. 

We call on the Scottish and UK Governments to urgently work towards these aims.  

We also support the following calls, and urge others to do the same: