Japan AALA Solidarity Committee sends a protest letter to Israel

The Japan Asia Africa Latin America Solidarity Committee on April 1 sent a protest statement to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon through the Israeli Embassy in Tokyo. The statement read as follows:

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon defined Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat as an enemy and sent in Israeli troops to Ramallah on March 29. The Israeli forces, firing at Arafat's headquarters, encircled the Palestinian Authority's compound to put the Palestinian leader under confinement.

Many at the United Nations Security Council meeting on March 30 condemned Israel and expressed concerns about suicide bomb attacks and the Israeli military attacks on Arafat's headquarters. All UNSC members, including the United States, supported a resolution calling on Israeli troops to withdraw from Ramallah.

Israel accepted neither the March 28 comprehensive peace proposal the Arab League adopted to solve the question of Palestine, nor the March 30 resolution of the U.N. Security Council. Ignoring international opinion, the Israeli forces on March 31 again attacked Qalqiliya and Bethlehem in the West Bank in reaction to suicide bombings.

The repeated use of military force by Israel will rather increase hatred and develop a cycle of terrorism instead of eliminating suicide bombers.

To end the present situation, Israel must swiftly end its military occupation and lift its siege of Arafat headquarters. We call on both sides to sit down for discussions in line with the 1993 Oslo Accords. (end)