Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Gaza Crisis

Gaza and Israel are on the brink of all-out war - before it is too late, raise a massive global outcry for a ceasefire to stop the violence and protect civilians: Sign the Emergency Petition. The Gaza-Israel crisis is out of control. It's come to this: bloody full-scale invasion, or a cease-fire.1 With rockets raining down on both sides, Israel launched a ground assault into the Gaza Strip this weekend. Over a hundred combatants and civilians from both sides lie dead.2 The next 48 hours are crucial -- Israel's cabinet will discuss a larger invasion Wednesday. But Hamas floated a Gaza ceasefire months ago, and 64% of Israelis support the idea.

Both sides know they are in a battle for global legitimacy, and international opinion counts. We need a massive global outcry for a cease-fire now - sign the emergency petition below, then forward this message to friends and family. We will deliver our petition to senior Israeli and Palestinian leaders this week, as well as in a major billboard campaign:

avaz.org cease fire now

Citizens on both sides are desperate for safety. Many experts believe that without a ceasefire to stabilize Gaza, there is no chance for achieving a comprehensive peace and a fair two-state deal. While the US still maintains no-one must talk to Hamas, Israel itself has begun to break that taboo, and public reports and our own contacts indicate that European and Arab officials now support a Gaza ceasefire.

Like the Hezbollah-Israel war of 2006, this conflict is spinning out of control. Just as it did then, international pressure can help achieve a ceasefire today. The combatants take public opinion very seriously. So let's send a united global message to the warring parties to stop the violence - sign the petition and spread the word today:

avav.org sign the petition

The UN has already called for both sides to cease all acts of violence - the European Union, Turkey, Russia, the UK, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and many other states have joined the global chorus. This is not just a war but a growing humanitarian crisis. Last month we met with EU Middle East envoy Marc Otte and senior advisers in European member states to deliver a call for a ceasefire and an internationally-overseen opening of the Gaza crossings, and we have seen progress since from the international community.5 There is much more to do. We've campaigned hard for real Middle East talks, but unless Gaza is stabilised, no lasting peace is possible.


  1. Invasion or ceasefire :
    Guardian news report on the Israeli debate:
  2. The Times of London news report :
    both sides claiming success, 110 dead:
  3. Missiles now reaching the Israeli city of Ashkelon
  4. 64% of Israelis support ceasefire talks with Hamas
  5. UN and EU call for an end to the violence
  6. European and international policy shifting
  7. International policy positions changing

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