Hundreds attend South Armagh vigil for Gaza

August 4, 2014

Crossmaglen Town Square was a sea of red, black and green on Tuesday 29th July as hundreds of people from across south Armagh came together to demonstrate their opposition to the ongoing attack on the Palestinian civilians living in the Gaza Strip.

Emma McArdle, who organised the event, said she was delighted that local people had shown solidarity with the people of Gaza saying;

“It’s really important that public demonstrations like this take place so that international pressure is brought on the Israeli Government.  The people of Ireland have participated in hundreds such demonstrations over the past few weeks and I’m really proud that south Armagh can be included in the list of places where people have said, ‘Stop’ to the brutality of the Israeli Defence Forces.”

Sinn Féin councillor Terry Hearty, who chaired the event, added,

“Tonight we join with protesters across Ireland and around the world in sending a message. To the people of Palestine we say that we stand with you, but just as importantly, to the governments of the world, who have stood by while Israel has tried to wipe Palestine out, we say shame on you.”

Speaking at the event Newry Armagh Assembly Member Megan Fearon denounced the Irish Government for its recent decision to abstain in a United Nations ‘vote on the creation of a Commission of Enquiry into Israel’s actions in Gaza.

“It is plain to see that what is happening in Gaza is genocide.  Israel is not engaged in self defense, it is attacking Palestinian civilians without distinction.  In a country with an average age of just 17 this means that the vast majority of those killed and injured are children.

“The Irish government made a disgraceful decision last week and tonight we send a message to them – “You did not do this in my name!” Ireland should immediately expel the Israeli Ambassador and bring to an end any trade agreements with the Israeli state.”

The event was also addressed by Michelle Garrett of the Irish Friends of Palestine who thanked people for organising the event and demonstrating their solidarity with the suffering people of Gaza.