Gaza Freedom March is determined to break the siege

December 29th, 2009 | Posted in Palestine

1,360 international delegates appeal to Egypt to let Gaza Freedom March proceed


Photo: Sabrien Amrov. Gaza solidarity demonstration in Montreal, December, 2008.

Citing escalating tensions on the Gaza-Egypt border, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry informed us on December 20 that the Rafah border will be closed over the coming weeks, into January. We responded that there is always tension at the border because of the siege and that if there are any risks, they are risks we are willing to take. We also said that it was too late for over 1,360 delegates coming from over 42 countries to change their plans now.

Although we consider this as a setback, it is something we’ve encountered—and overcome–before. No delegation, large or small, that has entered Gaza over the past 12 months has received a final OK before arriving at the Rafah border. Most delegations were discouraged from even heading out of Cairo to Rafah. Some had their buses stopped on the way. Some have been told outright that they could not go into Gaza. But after public and political pressure, the Egyptian government changed its position and let them pass.

Our efforts and plans will not be altered at this point. We have set out to break the siege of Gaza and to march in Gaza on December 31 against the international blockade. We are continuing the journey.

Egyptian embassies and missions all over the world will be hearing by phone, fax and email from delegates and the supporters of the Gaza Freedom March over the coming crucial days, with the clear message: Let the international delegation enter Gaza and let the Gaza Freedom March proceed.

Many delegates are already in Cairo and more are arriving daily. Delegates cancelled holiday plans months ago to come on the Gaza Freedom march and air tickets were purchased. We anticipate that virtually all of the 1,360 delegates will come to Cairo.

Because of the incredible humanitarian crisis in Gaza caused by the Israeli attack on Gaza a year ago and by the international siege on Gaza, we feel morally obligated to continue our mission to bring more international attention to the plight of the 1.5 million people imprisoned in Gaza.

The Gaza Freedom March Steering Committee

For more information, contact

Ann Wright
tel: 019 508 1493 (Cairo)

Medea Benjamin
tel: US +1.415-235-6517 Cairo 018 956 1919

Ehab Lotayef
tel: Canada +1.514.941.9792 Cairo 017 638-2628

Haidar Eid
tel: Gaza +972 599 441 766


Egyptian embassies and missions all over the world must hear from us and our supporters (by phone, fax and email) over the coming crucial days, with a clear message: Let the international delegation enter Gaza and let the Gaza Freedom March proceed.

Consulat général d’Égypte à Montréal
tel : 514-866-8455
fax: 514-866-0835

Palestine Division in Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cairo
Ahmed Azzam, tel +202-25749682 Email:

Other Egyptian diplomatic missions here

sample message

I am writing/calling to express my full support for the December 31, 2009 Gaza Freedom March. I urge the Egyptian government to allow the 1,300 international delegates to enter the Gaza Strip through Egypt.

The aim of the march is to call on Israel to lift the siege. The delegates will also take in badly needed medical aid, as well as school supplies and winter jackets for the children of Gaza.

Please, let this historic March proceed.

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