Senator Paul Gavan confronts Tánaiste on Palestine
In a heated exchange in the Seanad this afternoon, Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan confronted Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney TD, on his failure to address the shocking human rights abuses in Palestine.
Senator Gavan said:
“On the 27th of March your government took the decision to expel a Russian diplomat - in what could only be described as an act of sycophantic fawning over your British counterparts.
“You asked us to trust British intelligence. The very same intelligence agencies that provided us with false information regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.
“The same service that refuses to this day to release information on the Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
“Only three days after you took that decision, 750 innocent Palestinian protesters were wounded by Israeli soldiers at a peaceful planned march in Gaza, with 15 civilians murdered.
"Over the two weeks which followed that death toll reached 31 civilians, with over 1,000 injured.
“Not one Israeli diplomat has been expelled.
“This was a pre-determined attack of barbarity by the Israeli military which included sniper gunfire, drones, artillery and tear gas on peaceful protestors.
“Unlike Russia - we do have proof of Israel’s crimes.
“The proof is the dead bodies being buried each week in Gaza, the leaked videos online of unarmed protesters being shot while they pray, the children in prison sentenced to 10 years for throwing stones and the political representatives incarcerated in Israeli jails.
“Not content with using the judicial system to silence Palestinians, the Israeli Govt also wanted to prevent the Lord Mayor of Dublin from entering occupied Palestine.
"Has the Minister considered summoning the Ambassador to explain Israel’s hostile actions?
“Isn’t it time that our Government stood up against the apartheid state of Israel - not just utter empty words?
“I really don’t know what more evidence you need to take decisive action to expel the Israeli Ambassador.”