Durban port workers refuse to unload cargo from Israeli ship in solidarity with Palestine
DURBAN – The South African Trade and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) has announced that its members will refuse to unload cargo from the Israeli Zim Shinghai docked in the port of Durban on Thursday in sympathy for Palestinian victims of recent airstrikes and to blame the Israeli government for the resurgence of the conflict.
Satawu Deputy General Secretary Anele Kiet said its members confirmed they would snub Israeli carriers and related work, and that in addition there would be lunchtime pickets in solidarity with the Palestinian cause.
“We have received a request from the SA BDS Coalition that, as part of their solidarity with Palestine, Satawu members working in the port of Durban should boycott the shipment. Indeed, we contacted our members at the port of Durban, who confirmed that they would not do so. We will be picketing every day at noon and participating in demonstrations, ”Kiet said.
The SA BDS Coalition, an affiliate of the Palestinian BDS Committee, said it would be joined by unions and civil society organizations supportive of the Palestinian course in this morning’s protests.
“Members of the South African BDS Coalition, its affiliates and other partner organizations and unions will converge on the Durban Esplanade and the Port of Durban on Friday, May 21, to protest the mooring (sic) of a Israeli ship, and to celebrate the decision of Satawu members to boycott the unloading of the ship, ”the coalition said in a statement.
“The decision by Satawu and the BDS Coalition follows an appeal by the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU) to workers and unions to refuse to unload (Israeli) ships and goods from the sea and airports,” he said. he declared.
“The PGFTU call is one of many boycott, divestment and sanctions actions called by the Palestinians – a consequence of the barbaric Israeli attack on Gaza, the killings of Palestinians in the West Bank, the pogroms in Haifa Lyddia , Haifa, Jaffa and other towns and cities and ethnic cleansing in occupied Jerusalem, ”the organization said.
He said more than 230 people were killed, most civilians, including around 70 children, as well as the massive destruction of infrastructure in Gaza and a 14-year medieval siege on the territory.
Zim Shanghai, owned by Israeli state-owned Zim Lines, reportedly entered the port of Durban on Wednesday evening, although Transnet had not confirmed this at the time of publication.
“The action against the ship is part of a comprehensive set of actions against Zim Lines. The protests are also targeting Transnet, demanding that the parastatal company not allow goods from or to Israel to pass through South African ports, ”the coalition said.
Attempts to get comments from Transnet and its affected divisions had not materialized at the time of publication.