On the second anniversary of the Cast Lead offensive in Gaza Jordanian unionists have rallied to call for greater political and economic support for Gaza, and an end to a blockade which they said is causing a humanitarian disaster.
Rally participants praised the efforts of Turkey and Syria in backing the flotilla aid convoys which they said helped highlight the suffering of the Palestinians.
‘ Zionists failed to bring Gaza to its knees’
The President of the Jordan Dental Union, President Barakat Jaabari said the siege was meant to “weaken resistance and impose solutions on Palestinians against their will”.
“The Zionists wanted their attack on Gaza to bring Hamas and all Palestinians to their knees, but they failed,” Jaabari said in a speech at the rally, according to a Jordan Times report.
Unions creating database to monitor Israeli products sold in the Arab world.
Jabari said Jordan has been at the forefront of support to Gazans at official and popular levels, adding that the country’s aid convoys to Gaza have served as a “strong message of solidarity and support” for Palestinians in the coastal strip.
Unions in Jordan – mainly representing white-collar and professional workers – have been amongst the most vocal and active anti-Israel trade union groupings in the Middle East.
Earlier this month they organised a a conference to create a database to monitor ‘Israeli activity in the Arab region’.as part of a unified Arab effort to stop all relations with Israel.
Activists also agreed to hold an additional conference encompassing all civil society groups from around the Middle East and North Africa to warn against the risks of ‘dealing with the Zionist entity’, according to Badi Rafayah, president of the trade unions Anti-Normalisation Committee.
Jordan unions have lead anti-Israel campaign since 1994 peace treaty signed
The unions – mainly representing professional and white collar workers – have been leading an anti-normalisation campaign since the signing of the 1994 Wadi Araba Peace Treaty between Jordan and Israel.
Union members are reprimanded for making contact with Israelis and face losing membership in their associations if they are found to have any ties with Israel.
Under the law, association membership is mandatory for practising doctors, dentists, engineers, lawyers, nurses and pharmacists, among other professions.
Read some earlier reports on the TULIP website about Jordanian unions and Israel