Monday, 21 November 2011

US lawmakers put forward bill to designate Gaza flotilla organisations as 'terrorist' groups

From Mondoweiss

Palestine solidarity activists and human rights lawyers are decrying a Congressional bill that would investigate whether organizations involved in last summer's thwarted flotilla to Gaza should be designated as "terrorist" groups. Critics of the House of Representatives bill see it as the latest in a decades-long effort to intimidate Palestine solidarity activists in the United States.

Introduced to the House on October 6, the bill seeks to:
direct the Secretary of State to submit a report on whether any support organization that participated in the planning or execution of the recent Gaza flotilla attempt should be designated as a foreign terrorist organization
The legislation also demands that the State Department, in the same document, report on
Any actions taken by the Department of State to express support and gratitude for the principled stance taken by the Government of Greece to prevent the recent Gaza flotilla attempt to violate Israel’s lawful blockade of Gaza.
"It’s a tool of intimidation," said Maria LaHood, a senior staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights who is involved with efforts to hold Israel accountable for flotilla-related human rights abuses. "It's just one of the many ways in which there is an effort to suppress advocacy and dissent by international solidarity activists trying to advocate for Palestinian human rights." more