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On Friday 8th July 2016, two years after the start of Israel’s last major military assault on Gaza, hundreds of people gathered opposite Downing Street to demand an end to the ten-year siege; and an end to the two-way arms trade between the UK and Israel.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Palestine Solidarity Campaign vice-chair Prof. Kamel Hawwash gave introductory remarks. More than 2,200 Palestinians were killed in the brutal assault in the summer of 2014, including more than 500 children.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Many speakers highlighted the UK government’s complicity in Israel’s siege of Gaza.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Chris Rose, director of the Amos Trust, spoke against Israel’s blockade, now in its 10th year.

Chris Rose, Amos Trust

John Hilary from anti-poverty charity War on Want said “We need to re-double our efforts in this country”.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Joyce Onstad of Liberal Democrats Friends of Palestine called for the lifting of the siege.

Joyce Onstad, Lib Dem Friends of Palestine

Elizabeth Jadon spoke on behalf of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions UK.

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions UK

Bruce Kent is a co-founder of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and a patron of the PSC.

Bruce Kent, CND co-founder

People travelled from across the country to express their solidarity with Palestinians.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Shahd Abusalama, singer and journalist from Gaza, said “we Palestinians are resilient because we have no other choice”, before a moving performance opposite Downing Street.

Shahd Abusalama

Glyn Secker of Jews for Justice for Palestinians, proclaimed loudly, “Not in our name!”

Glyn Secker, Jews for Justice for Palestinians

Many speakers called for a ban on the two-way arms trade with Israel.

Stop Arming Israel

Riya Hassan, European co-ordinator of the BDS national commitee, said “it’s not enough to say we stand in solidarity with Palestinians, we have to take action”.

Riya Hassan, BDS national committee

Riya Hassan also said “stop arming Israel, stop buying and selling weapons to the Israeli state”.

Riya Hassan, BDS national committee

Leader of The Green Party, Natalie Bennett called for the end of the EU-Israel association agreement, and said “the UK must take responsibility for their impact on the world”.

Natalie Bennett, The Green Party

Mizan Rahman spoke on behalf of Campaign Against the Arms Trade, saying “Israel sells the technology of oppression”.

Rally for Gaza, Fri 8th July

Many people attending the rally signed the pledge to boycott Hewlett Packard, who provide the technology that supports Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza.