Women from different parts of the world who cares and feels passionate about freedom of Palestine and Gaza came together and set sail to Gaza with two ships in order to raise awareness about and break the illegal blockade on Gaza by Israel. On 14th September the women headed to Gaza with two ships named Amal-Hope and Zaytouna-Oliva leaving port Barcelona, Spain. The campaign is organized Freedom Flotilla Coalition-FFC in which IHH also participates.
Mavi Marmara martyr Çetin Topçuoğlu’s wife Çiğdem Topçuoğlu is participating in the voyage as a representative from IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation. Mrs. Topçuoğlu has arrived in Sicily from where she will board the ship. The women will set sail to Gaza after making necessary arrangements in Messina.
Two ships boarded by acclaimed female artists, writers, academics, photographers, MPs, journalists, activitst and sportswomen from around the world aim at bringing illegal blockade on Gaza up on the agenda of international community thus breaking it. The women make up passengers and crew including the captain on board two ships. Mavi Marmara martyr Çetin Topçuoğlu’s wife Çiğdem Topçuoğlu is also a participant from Turkey. Mrs. Topçuoğlu, who has garnered many national and international awards in Taekwondo just like her late husband did, reached Sicily from where she will set sail for the freedom of Gaza for which her husband was killed. Mrs. Topçuoğlu is going to board the ships that left Barcelona in Sicily in order to represent IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation and Turkey in this campaign organized by Freedom Flotilla Coalition.
Nobel Peace Laurate Northern Iraelan peace activist Mairead Maguire, New Zeland Greent Party MP Marama Davidson, American playwright Naomi Wallace, Norwegian academic and activist Gerd von der Lippe, Canadian college professor Marilyn Porter are among the passengers on board.
The women are trying to raise awareness about the plight and struggle of women living in Gaza and Palestine under the illegal blockade. Over 1.5 million most of whom under 20 years of age are struggling to survive in Israeli occupied Gaza. Israel keeps violating the international law. According to the studies Gaza is estimated to become unsuitable for life by 2020. Turning the city into an inhabitable place undeniably is a crime against humanity. Two ships boarded by women set sail to Gaza in order to break the blockade imposed by Israel. The activist women headed to Gaza left Barcelona which is sister city of Gaza on 14th September. The ships arrived in Sicily after stopping by France. The ships will leave for Gaza after making necessary arrangements in Sicily.
Women Highlight Unlawful Blockade on Gaza
By launching a women’s boat, women from all over the world aim to highlight the struggle of Palestinian women in Gaza, and the West Bank against the blockade.
Gaza has been under Israeli blockade for the past decade, during which time Israel has also launched countless attacks against the besieged population, turning their life into a nightmare and a continuous struggle. The war did not only occupy Gaza’s economy, market and soil but also destroyed homes, schools, families, libraries and museums. In brief it extinguished the civilization, heritage, memories and hopes of the country.
Through Freedom Flotillas and other naval missions, we have brought international attention to their suffering and their resistance. The Women’s Boat to Gaza seeks not only to challenge the Israeli blockade, but to also show solidarity and bring a message of hope to the Palestinian people. With the support of women, men, non-governmental organizations, civil society groups and from women’s collectives and events around the world, we are making this happen.
Freedom Flotilla Coalition is composed of civil society organizations and initiatives from many countries. We have been challenging the illegal and inhumane Israeli blockade of Gaza for years and are committed to continue the struggle until the blockade is unconditionally lifted and the Palestinian people everywhere regain their full rights.
For more information go to the website and social media accounts of FFC;