Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Letter to Congressman Pallone by JATO

Dear Congressman Pallone,
We ask that you introduce a resolution in Congress condemning the unprovoked attack by the Israeli forces on an internationally known Palestinian photo-journalist, Mohammed Omer.

Mr. Omer, correspondent for the InterPress Service, was strip-searched at gunpoint, assaulted and abused by Israeli security officials at the Allenby border crossing between Jordan and the West Bank on June 26. Omer, a resident of Gaza, was returning home from London where he had received the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism.

As you know, Congressman, Israel controls the borders of Gaza and severely restricts movement. Omer had received Israeli permission to re-enter Gaza. However, according to Omer, Israeli security officials interrogated him, pointed an M16 gun at his face then forcibly removed all of his clothing. Then officials pinned him to the floor and searched every cavity of his body. He began vomiting and fainted. He was then dragged on the floor with his head banging on the ground. He woke up in a Palestinian hospital, where he is now, recovering from the assault.

His treatment is not unusual for Palestinians at border-crossings. Unfortunately, it is typical.

Since the U.S. supports Israel militarily, financially, and morally, we would like the U.S. Congress to take a stand against Israel's brutalization of this citizen and journalist. Actions such as these go against the spirit of peace and since the United States government has stated its support for a peaceful solution to the conflict, it is imperative that the US's ally not derail the peace process by brutalizing civilians.


Jews Against the Occupation- Central NJ

Rutgers Against the War

Central Jersey Coalition Against Endless War

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