Sinn Fein Senator to speak on Palestine and Human Rights Issues at Council of Europe
Senator Paul Gavan will be representing Sinn Féin this week at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and will speak on a range of human rights issues including; Palestine, asylum seekers, greater support for Syrian refugees, and LBGTI rights in Chechnya.
The Sinn Fein Senator will make an impassioned plea for members of the assembly to endorse a programme of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Against the State of Israel in response to the recent murder of 62 men, women and children in Gaza by Israeli State forces.
Speaking ahead of the assembly, Senator Gavan said:
“What we are witnessing is the slow and deliberate genocide of the Palestinian people.
"A Palestinian Child is murdered on average every three days by Israeli occupying forces. Gaza is now the largest Open Air prison in the world, holding 1.3 million people. According to the UN it will be unfit for human habitation in two years.
“We must recognise that Israel is an apartheid state and support the international campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions.
"The boycott campaign played a major role in the defeat of Apartheid in South Africa, and it can do the same thing with regard to Israel.”
Senator Gavan will endorse the call from the Council of Europe for greater financial support to deal with the ongoing crisis of refugees from Syria, and will also lead the debate for the United European Left on the ongoing persecution of LGBTI people in the Chechen Republic.
“A campaign of persecution has unfolded against the backdrop of serious, systematic and wide-spread discrimination and harassment against LGBTI people in the Chechen Republic, as a result of this more than 114 LGBTI people and members of their families have fled the Chechen Republic.
“We also have the bizarre situation whereby government officials in Chechnya deny that there are any LGBTI people in Chechnya. I will therefore be endorsing the call for an international investigation of this issue to be carried out by the Council of Europe.”