Kia Ora Gaza organiser condemns ‘open genocide’ in Gaza Strip

While telling today’s Palestine solidarity rally in Auckland about “good news” over creative humanitarian aid plans to help Palestinians amid the War on Gaza, New Zealand Kia Ora Gaza advocate and organiser Roger Fowler also condemned Israel’s genocidal conduct. He was interviewed by Anadolu News Agency after a Freedom Flotilla Coalition planning meeting in Istanbul with his views this week republished here.

By Faruk Hanedar in Istanbul

New Zealand activist Roger Fowler has condemned the Israeli regime’s actions in the Gaza Strip, saying “this is definitely genocide”.

A Pacific cohort at the Palestinian solidarity rally and march at Te Komititanga Square today . . . they also gave an eulogy and sang a waiata for the loss of beloved Green MP and Pacific community advocate Fa’anānā Efeso Collins who died suddenly this week. Image: David Robie/Asia Pacific Report

“The Israeli regime has not hidden its intention to destroy or displace the Palestinian people, especially those in Gaza, from the beginning,” he said.

“They are committing a terrible act — killing tens of thousands of people, injuring more, and destroying a large part of this beautiful country.”

The death toll from the Israeli War on Gaza topped 29,000 this week – mostly women and children – and there were reports of deaths from starvation.

Fowler demanded action to halt the attacks and expressed hope about the potential effect of the international Freedom Flotilla — a grassroots organisation working to end the illegal Israeli blockade of Gaza.

He noted large-scale protests against Israel’s actions in Gaza and emphasised efforts to pressure governments, including through weekly protests in New Zealand to unequivocally condemn Israel’s actions as unacceptable.

Long-standing mistreatment
He stressed that the “tragedy” had extended beyond recent months, highlighting the long-standing mistreatment endured by Palestinians — particularly those in Gaza — for the last 75 years.

Fowler pointed out the dire situation that Gazans faced — confined to a small territory with restricted access to essential resources including food, medicine, construction materials and necessities.

He noted his three previous trips to Gaza with land convoys, where he demonstrated solidarity and observed the dire circumstances faced by the population.

“Boycott is a very effective action,” said Fowler, underlining the significance of boycotts, isolation and sanctions, while stressing the necessity of enhancing and globalising initiatives to end the blockade.

“I believe that boycotting has a great impact on pressuring not only major companies to withdraw from Israel and end their support, but also on making the Israeli government and our own governments understand that they need to stop what they are doing.”

Fowler also criticised the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) “genocide decision” for being ineffective due to the arrogance of those governing Israel.

South Africa brought a genocide case against Israel to the ICJ in December and asked for emergency measures to end Palestinian bloodshed in Gaza, where nearly 30,000 people have been killed since October 7.

World Court fell short
The World Court ordered Israel last month to take “all measures within its power” to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza but fell short of ordering a ceasefire.

It also ordered Israel to take “immediate and effective” measures to enable the provision of urgently needed basic services and humanitarian assistance in the Gaza Strip.

Fowler said all nations must persistently advocate and exert pressure for adherence to decisions by the UN court.

Fowler acknowledged efforts by UN personnel but he has concerns about their limited resources in Gaza, citing the only avenue for change is for people to pressure authorities to stop the genocide and ensure Israel is held accountable.

“It’s definitely tragic and heartbreaking. Women, children, and families have no food. They are trying to drink water from puddles. People are eating grass. This is a very desperate situation. No one is talking about the children. Thousands of people are under the rubble, including small babies and children,” he said.

Roger Fowler is a Mangere East community advocate, political activist for social justice in many issues, and an organiser of Kia Ora Gaza. This article was first published by Anadolu Agency and is republished with permission.

Sometimes when a business is growing, it needs a little help.

Right now Kaniva News provides a free, politically independent, bilingual news service for readers around the world that is absolutely unique. We are the largest New Zealand-based Tongan news service, and our stories reach Tongans  wherever they are round the world. But as we grow, there are increased demands on Kaniva News for translation into Tongan on our social media accounts and for the costs associated with expansion. We believe it is important for Tongans to have their own voice and for Tongans to preserve their language, customs and heritage. That is something to which we are strongly committed. That’s why we are asking you to consider sponsoring our work and helping to preserve a uniquely Tongan point of view for our readers and listeners.

Latest news

Related news