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UCU statement on Gaza

31 July 2014 | last updated: 29 October 2015

The University and College Union (UCU) has called for an immediate ceasefire and end to the violence in Gaza. The union backed calls from the United Nations (UN) for an immediate, negotiated and total ceasefire and called for peace talks leading to a sustainable peace in the Middle East.

The union said there could not be a military solution to a political problem and condemned the recent weeks of violence which have led to the reported deaths of more than 1,240 Palestinians and over 50 Israelis.
The union said it was particularly concerned with attacks the UN says have hit six schools in Gaza. The full UCU statement on Gaza:
'UCU fully condemns the current Israeli military onslaught on Gaza, which we believe will put off the search for a lasting and just peace. The Israeli action is disproportionate, unacceptable and self-defeating. There cannot be a military solution to this political problem and we need to see an immediate ceasefire and end to the violence.
'Only a ceasefire observed by all - including those firing rockets into Israel - and genuine peace negotiations between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority, can hold out any hope for people in the region. This must include an end to both the blockade of Gaza and the occupation of the West Bank and the observance of international law and UN resolutions.
'We are horrified by the killing and wounding of civilians, including many children, and note particularly that many of them have occurred in education institutions and property under the protection of the UN. The UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights identifies the right to education as a human right.
'We are appalled that UK-manufactured military equipment may be being used in the attack on Gaza, and join Amnesty International, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, the TUC and others in calling for the suspension of UK arms sales to Israel.'