New Zealanders have been living through a brutal Israeli occupation since the late 1970s.
The international community has failed to stop the Israeli aggression.
But the New Zealand government is stepping up its support for the Palestinians.
It’s a new approach.
New Zealand is joining the US, Australia, Canada and South Africa in a new campaign to protect Gaza’s residents.
On Monday, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key will speak to a group of Palestinians from Gaza, including children, to urge them to return to their homes.
Key says he will ask his government to do more to help the Palestinian people.
“I think it’s a bit premature for me to announce this publicly at this point,” he said, but he is expected to take the message to the United Nations and other world leaders.
New Zealand is not the only country to offer aid to Gaza.
Australia and Canada have also stepped up their aid efforts.
But Key is signalling a different approach.
He has said New Zealand will not be taking part in the blockade imposed on Gaza, despite pressure from his coalition partners.
He also says he is not looking for new military alliances, which may not be as popular as a peace deal with the Palestinians, who have called for an end to the blockade.
In fact, Key has hinted at his own possible departure from the alliance.
Last year, he said he would consider leaving it to his successor.
After all, the New Labour government lost power in 2014 when it backed the US and its ally Israel’s blockade of Gaza.
Now, he is pushing for an international boycott.
A new approach New Zealand’s foreign affairs minister says it will not stand for a blockade that hurts the Palestinian economy.
I think a lot of countries that have been supporting the Palestinians in Gaza, have been looking at a new way to support the Palestinian economic situation, he told reporters.
Israel’s new blockade is not designed to stop aid and trade, he says.
It is designed to deter the Palestinian leadership from negotiating a peace agreement with Israel, and it is designed, he added, “to deter the leaders of Israel from making good on the commitments they made to the international community to stop its attacks on Gaza.”
Key, who is also the new head of the Defence Force, says the blockade will only increase the pressure on Gaza’s civilian population, who rely on aid for their survival.
We have to take a hard look at our support of Israel, we have to look at the kind of support we give to the Palestinians and I think we have a lot to say about that, he has said.
At the same time, Key says he believes Israel has a moral obligation to ensure that Gaza’s population can continue to benefit from international aid.
This is the best way to achieve that, Key said.
“If we don’t do that, the price that Palestinians will pay is going to be high.”
New Zealander David Marr has taken up the call.
He is among many people who want the world to take action to protect the Palestinians living in Gaza.
The world should not take any more responsibility for the suffering of the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza as well as the suffering that they are suffering because of the blockade, he believes.
Marr said the blockade is killing the people of Gaza and that the people living in Israel have no rights.
There is no justice for the civilian population.
We have to do everything we can to prevent the people in Gaza from starving.
Marr is also one of several politicians in the US Congress who has spoken out against the Israeli blockade.
Last week, Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said that Israel’s action against Gaza was “unlawful and in violation of international law.”
“We must work together to end this horrific, disproportionate and inhumane act,” Schiff said in a statement.