Ghanaian MP, Ras Mubarak, was forced to address delegates at the 9th Jerusalem International Conference via teleconferencing from Jordan after Israeli authorities denied him entry into the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).
“Ghana has a long-standing history of being on the side of the Palestinian people and we would continue to be on your side in this just cause.” This was the message from Ghanaian parliamentarian, Ras Mubarak, to Palestinians at the 9th Jerusalem International Conference currently taking place in Ramallah.
Mubarak, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for the Kumbungu Constituency, was forced to deliver his address via teleconferencing from Jordan after Israeli authorities denied him entry into the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). Although disappointed that he could not set foot in the occupied West Bank and join the conference physically, Mubarak said the experience of being denied entry was “a tiny taste of the oppression of the Palestinian people.” (Note: As the occupying power, Israel controls almost all access to the Occupied Palestinian Territories which comprises the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.)
“Ghana is undoubtedly committed towards the cause of the Palestinian people”
“Ghana is undoubtedly committed towards the cause of the Palestinian people,” said Mubarak on Wednesday afternoon, reminding delegates that his government had voted in favour of all four key issues on the rights of Palestinians at the Human Rights Council of the United Nations (UN) in March.
Ghana was also one of 128 countries at the UN that voted resoundingly against a resolution in December to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. “I am proud that my country was on the right side of history in that historic, but humiliating vote, against the US and Israel,” said the Ghanaian legislator.
Mubarak assured delegates that Ghanaian Members of Parliament and other progressive voices in the West African country would continue to stand with Palestine, and will continue to strive and fight for justice for the Palestinian people.
“Israel deserves to be isolated and boycotted”
Mubarak said he was deeply disappointed at the recent behaviour of the Israeli regime and its violent suppression of legitimate protests by the people of the besieged Gaza Strip.
“Any country which treats international laws and conventions with contempt, flouts them with increasing regularity and maintains a brutal military occupation has to fit into the rogue state category. Israel is not just a rogue state, it is a terrorist state. The politics of discrimination and apartheid should have no place to thrive in this 21st century,” said Mubarak.
“We do not have the luxury of long and fruitless deliberations and negotiations. The time to act is now and we must do so with stealth and courage,” said Mubarak, emphasizing the need for boycotts, political lobbying and education programmes about Israel’s apartheid regime.
Mubarak ended by saluting and commending the courage of Palestinians – who on a daily basis are harassed in their own land, but stand up and resist their Israeli oppressors. “Do not despair, be of good courage, and be assured that you are not alone,” he told delegates.
At the time of writing, the Ghanaian Ministry of Foreign Affairs had not commented on Mubarak’s denial of entry by the Israeli authorities.