The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign announced that it will host a National Demonstration calling for freedom and justice for the Palestinians people this Saturday, 9th August. The announcement comes as 16 small businesses nationwide have pledged to stop to stocking Israeli goods. The whole town of Kinvara, County Galway has also committed to boycott Israeli goods in light of Israel’s oppressive regime and current brutal attack on Gaza. The IPSC has also submitted a briefing document on the current crisis in Gaza to all TDs, Senators and Irish MEPs outlining the background to the conflict and concrete steps that the Irish government can take to ease the suffering and oppression of the Palestinian people. Israel began its most recent offensive against the Gaza Strip on 8th July and has since killed over 1,868 Palestinians in the region. The UN have confirmed that the vast majority of casualties have been civilian deaths with high numbers of child fatalities amongst them. Reports also confirm that 17 hospitals and numerous schools and homes have been purposely targeted resulting in multiple deaths and injuries. Media outlets and journalists have also been attacked. Over 8,000 people have been wounded in Gaza. Close to 300,000 people have been internally displaced in Gaza and medics and UN officials alike have stressed that there is literally no safe place to shelter from Israeli aggression in Gaza. IPSC Spokesperson Freda Hughes said, “Any ceasefire agreement must include an end to the siege and brutal occupation of Palestine to be just and meaningful. We are calling for a National Demonstration to show that people in every corner of this island nationwide are appalled by Israel’s ongoing injustice against the Palestinian people. For over 50 years Israel’s continuous breaches of international law and total disregard for human rights has gone unchallenged by the international community. We have recently called on all members of the Oireachtas to support trade sanctions against Israel, a ban on the import of Israeli goods and an arms embargo. We hope that people power will reinforce these demands on Saturday with large numbers joining from all over the country.” Freda Hughes continued, “We are encouraged by businesses coming out and supporting the boycott and by individuals carrying out their own boycott actions. Boycotting is an extremely effective way for individuals to collectively apply the necessary pressure to isolate Israel for its apartheid policies towards the Palestinian people, blatant disregard for human rights and flagrant abuse of international law. Israel acts with impunity because the international community allows it to. Where governments fail to act civil society must. We need to emulate the methods that isolated apartheid South Africa to help to end the brutal occupation of Palestine.”