(LARNACA, 29 June 2009) – The Free Gaza boat the “Spirit of Humanity” departed Cyprus at 7:30am on Monday, 29 July. Twenty-one human rights and solidarity workers representing eleven different countries were aboard. The passengers include Nobel laureate Mairead Maguire and former U.S. congresswoman Cynthia McKinney. The ship also carries three tons of medical aid, children’s toys, and rehabilitation and reconstruction kits for twenty family homes. Over 2,400 homes were destroyed in Gaza during the Israeli massacre in December/January, 490 of them by F-16 airstrikes, as well as 30 mosques, 29 educational institutions, 29 medical centers, 10 charitable organizations, and 5 cement factories. Each kit carries a small amount of supplies for a single family, representing sectors of civil society currently being blockaded by Israel: Agriculture, Building & Reconstruction, Education, Electricity, Health, and Water & Sanitation. Although over 4 billion dollars in aid was promised to Gaza in the aftermath of the Israeli onslaught, little humanitarian aid and no reconstruction supplies have been allowed in.
Update: The SPIRIT has left over 9 hours ago. They are on their way to Gaza and will be there tomorrow afternoon. We ask that you follow their progress by going to our website at http://www.freegaza.org and clicking on LIVE in the upper left hand side. You will be able to see where they are from the SPOT beacon on board.
If you also would like to make yourselves heard, you can call or fax the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs and demand that Israel not harm the boat, the passengers or the cargo. Their numbers are listed below. The more of you who do that, the safer our mission.
Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs