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Bairbre de Brún urges people to support Belfast rally calling for end to crisis in Middle East

3 August, 2006

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has today urged people to "turn out in force to demand an immediate ceasefire in Lebanon and end to the killing of Lebanese, Palestinian and Israeli civilians".

Ms de Brún made her comments after Trocaire announced details of a rally in Belfast City centre next Tuesday 8th August calling for an immediate, unconditional cease-fire between all parties involved in the conflict and for international humanitarian law to be upheld by all countries.

Speaking today Ms de Brún said:

"I want to take this opportunity to lend my support to next Tuesday‚s rally to demand an end to the current Middle Eastern crisis and the slaughter of civilians. Innocent people have suffered enough over the past number of weeks and months.

"The EU and the international community must call for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire as civilians continue to suffer in Southern Lebanon and Northern Israel. We must call for an end to the incursions in Gaza also. The Israeli army has systematically destroyed the infrastructure of Gaza and southern Lebanon and killed many hundreds of innocent civilians. Twenty Israeli civilians have also been killed in recent shelling.

"Ordinary people need to make their voices heard on the streets. We need to call for international humanitarian law to be upheld by all countries and for citizens to be protected.

"The international community must work to find a long term solution to the crisis in the Middle East, including the establishment of a viable Palestinian state. However, talk of seeking a longer term solution cannot be used to delay an end to the present crisis. The collective punishment of whole communities is unacceptable." ENDS

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