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'Beginning of the end.' Zoabi Photo: Noam Moskowitz
'Beginning of the end.' Zoabi Photo: Noam Moskowitz
 
 

MK Zoabi: Blockade easing proves politics as motivator, not defense

Arab lawmaker who took part in Gaza-bound flotilla says it marked 'beginning of total collapse of Israeli siege.' Adds: I won't be deterred by political persecution, scare campaign

Roee Nahmias
Published: 06.20.10, 23:41 / Israel News

Knesset Member Hanin Zoabi (Balad), who participated in the Gaza-bound flotilla to break the blockade on the Hamas-ruled territory, said that the cabinet's decision to ease the blockade "proves that it is not a security blockade, but a political one."

 

"The objective of the flotilla and of the future struggle that continues and will continue is to completely break the blockade because this blockade amounts to collective punishment. Its result is crimes against the Palestinian people," MK Zoabi told Ynet on Sunday.

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Zoabi said the flotilla was "the beginning of the blockade's collapse," adding that "the goal is to break the blockade completely.

 

"The flotilla succeeded in undermining the blockade's legitimacy, because when the government says it will reassess its conditions, this means it is political," said the Arab-Israeli lawmaker.

 

"The flotilla also encouraged additional flotillas and international initiatives. This is the beginning of the total collapse of the blockade," she said.

 

Despite the harsh criticism leveled against her by colleagues in the Knesset and the general public, Zoabi said she plans to take part in the next flotillas. "I have already said I would not be deterred by political persecution and the scare campaign launched against me," she said.

 

"All these accusations of terrorism and treachery isolate most of the Israeli public from the rest of the world. Israel thinks the whole world ends at its borders," Zoabi told Ynet.

 

"Israel is under siege as far as (global public opinion) is concerned; not because the world is anti-Semitic or hostile toward Israel, but because Israel is applying its own moral code and does not adhere to the universal code," she claimed.

 

Addressing Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's inflammatory remarks in the aftermath of the deadly commando raid on the Gaza-bound flotilla, Zoabi said, "Israel violated Turkey's sovereignty when it hijacked the ship. Turkey is conducting itself like a strong, independent country that has the right to protect its sovereignty."

 

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