Gaza, Palestine: Today, protestors in Gaza printed out the Maldives national flag as they welcomed the continued and strong support of Maldivians for the freedom and rights of Palestinians against the apartheid Israeli occupation.
In recent weeks, many in the Maldives government, the ruling party PPM and Members of Parliament (including the foreign minister) have condemned the Israeli aggression against peaceful Palestinians protesting in Gaza.
GoM condemns the deadly attacks on Palestinian protesters near Gaza's border. Deepest condolences to the Government and brotherly people of #Palestine including the families of the victims – Foreign Minister @ASIM_MDV
— MFA Maldives (@MDVForeign) March 31, 2018
At the same time, Palestinians remember how Maldivians from all parts of society came out to their support during the last Israeli war on Gaza.
Now, as the Great Return March in Gaza continues, Israeli snipers have shot and injured over 1,500 peaceful protestors. This march calls for the rights of Palestinian refugees around the world to return back to their legitimate land in Palestine.
In these difficult moments where fathers, mothers and their children are standing between their freedom and bullets, the support of their Maldivian brothers and sisters on social media has been well noticed in Gaza.
In the Maldives today, we are discovering the hypocrisy of the British and European governments, as well as the United Nations to some extent. These foreign governments have continuously called on the Maldives government to take various steps to safeguard human rights, democracy and transparency in the country.
The European Union has even called for targeted sanctions on the Maldives, as part of their claim to support human rights, and not to support the US military foreign policy in the region. If this was true, we Maldivians should ask: why have they not sent a single fact-finding mission to the Gaza border with Israel, where Israeli snipers are openly shooting peaceful protestors daily?
If, for some reason, Israel is not allowing any delegation from the EU or even the United Nations to visit Gaza, then let us ask what would have happened if the Maldives military shot one innocent protestor? Most likely there would be immediate sanctions, call for wider economic and tourism sanctions and, to some extent, support the Indian politicians calls for its military to invade the sovereign territory of the Maldives.
So why didn’t a single thing happen to protect the human rights of Palestinians in Gaza? The European Union calls for democracy, fairness and transparency, but when the people of Gaza practice these values, the European Union actually joins in on the sanctioning of Gaza in support of the United States and Israel’s right-wing governments.
Yes, there have been some statements calling for an investigation by the UN. However, these are just words on a paper while real American and British-made bullets are shot by apartheid Israeli military snipers at innocent peaceful protestors on occupied land. Could it be that if Israeli snipers did not use these bullets, it would mean fewer sales for Western arms exporters?
The Great Return March is expected to continue in the weeks to come and Palestinians in Gaza are expected to be killed and injured daily, while the UK, EU and UN do nothing.
Nevertheless, the strength of Palestinians for gaining their freedom does not depend on the weakness of these governments and the UN, it depends on ordinary citizens of the Maldives and around the world. It is a must for foreign governments to understand without a doubt that Maldivians (as a people, government and nation) will never stop supporting the freedom of Palestine.
Image Credit: Friends of Palestine