For Immediate Release: August 11th, 2006

International Day of Solidarity, August 12

Lebanese, U.S. Citizens and other Internationals risk safety to bring humanitarian aid to devasted Southern Lebanon.

U.S. Press contact based in Lebanon:
Ali Tonak
961 70 150 247
ali@indymedia.org
www.lebanonsolidarity.org

On August 12, at 7 am, Lebanese from throughout the country and international supporters who have come to Lebanon to express solidarity will gather in Martyr's Square in Beirut to form a civilian convoy to the south of Lebanon. Hundreds of Lebanese and international civilians will express their solidarity with the inhabitants of the heavily destroyed south who have been bravely withstanding the assault of the Israeli military. This campaign is endorsed by more than 200 Lebanese and international organizations. This growing coalition of national and international non-governmental organizations hereby launches a campaign of civil resistance for the purpose of challenging the cruel and ruthless use of massive military force by Israel, the regional superpower, upon the People of Lebanon.

August 12 marks the start of this Campaign of Resistance, declaring Lebanon an Open Country for Civil Resistance. August 12 also marks the international day of protest against the Israeli aggression.

"In the face of Israel's systematic killing of our people, the indiscriminate bombing of our towns, the scorching of our villages, and the attempted destruction of our civil infrastructure, we say No! In the face of the forced expulsion of a quarter of our population from their homes throughout Lebanon, and the complicity of governments and international bodies, we re-affirm the acts of civil resistance that began from the first day of the Israeli assault, and we stress and add the urgent need to act!," said Rasha Salti, one of the organizers of this national event.

After August 12, the campaign will continue with a series of civil actions, leading to an August 19 civilian march to reclaim the South."Working together, in solidarity, we will overcome the complacency, inaction, and complicity of the international community and we will deny Israel its goal of removing Lebanese from their land and destroying the fabric of our country," explained Samah Idriss, writer and co-organizer of this campaign.

"An international civilian presence in Lebanon is not only an act of solidarity with the Lebanese people in the face of unparalleled Israeli aggression, it is an act of moral courage to defy the will of those who would seek to alienate the West from the rest and create a new Middle East out of the rubble and blood of the region," said Huwaida Arraf, co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement and campaign co-organizer. "After having witnessed the wholesale destruction of villages by Israel's air force and navy and having visited the victims (so-called displaced) of Israel's policy of cleansing Lebanese civilians from their homes," continued Arraf, "it is imperative to go south and reach those who have stayed behind to resist by steadfastly remaining on their land."

Israel has been indsicrimately bombing civilian targets and the convoy recognizes that they place their life in peril by trying to bring aid to the thousands that are dying of hunger, thirst and lack of medical care in Southern Lebanon as a result of Israel's relentless bombing campaign.