SAN FRANCISCO, July 22, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CA) today announced the launch of a letter-writing to call for an end to the killing in Gaza.
The letters, directed at California Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, are being circulated at Ramadan events across California by staff and volunteers of the Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization.
[NOTE: During the month-long fast of Ramadan, Muslims hold special prayers and other activities at mosques nationwide.]
CAIR chapters across the country have launched similar letter-writing campaigns, including chapters in Maryland and Texas.
SEE: CAIR Collects 1,000+ Letters Urging Md. Senators to Call for End to Killing in Gaza
Several thousand letters have been signed so far. The letters will be hand-delivered to the offices of both senators early this week.
Some 600 Palestinians - mostly civilians and children - have been reported killed and thousands have been injured in Israel's most recent military campaign against Gaza. Gaza endured at least 100 casualties on Sunday alone. Numerous Palestinian Americans in California have reported deaths among their relatives in Gaza, including some 25 this past weekend.
Israeli attacks targeting civilians have included the killing of whole families as they sheltered in their homes, attacks on journalists, the shelling of hospitals, the destruction of mosques, and even allegations that wounded civilians are being targeted by Israeli snipers.
SEE: Israelis Kill 19 Palestinian Children with One Strike (NY Times)
Palestinian's Killing Caught on Camera
Palestinian Boy Clings to Paramedic - Story Behind the Viral Photo (Sydney Morning Herald)
Israeli Airstrikes Hit 5 Mosques in Gaza (USA Today)
One especially disturbing report emerging from Gaza described four boys - all cousins aged 9 to 12 - who were targeted and killed by Israel while they played on a Gaza City beach as international journalists looked on.
SEE: Israeli Strike Kills Four Boys Playing on Gaza Beach (ABC)
"American taxpayers are funding Israel's use of illegal and inhumane force against Palestinians living in Gaza," said CAIR-CA Chair Safaa Ibrahim. "Our community is coming together to urge their senators to intervene and call for an immediate halt to the unconscionable and inexcusable targeting of innocent civilians by the Israeli military using American-funded weapons."
The letters read in part:
"The U.S. government must not remain silent about Israel's unjust and disproportionate use of force against the Palestinians in Gaza. . .
"Because Americans taxpayers provide Israel with billions of dollars of aid each year, we have a right to demand that those funds not be used to take the lives of innocent civilians."
CAIR recently announced the launch of "CAIR Connects: Gaza." This alert allows individuals an opportunity to communicate their concerns regarding the current crisis in Gaza to their elected officials.
SEE: "CAIR Connects: Gaza"
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Video: Tampa Teen Beaten by Israelis Interviewed on MSNBC's 'All In with Chris Hayes' (Part 2)
CAIR-CA is the oldest chapter of CAIR, America's largest Muslim civil rights organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CONTACT: CAIR-SFBA Executive Director Zahra Billoo, 408.986.9874, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR-LA Communications Coordinator Ojaala Ahmad, 714.776.1847, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR-SD Executive Director Hanif Mohebi, 858.278.4547, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR-SV Executive Director Basim Elkarra, 916.441.6269, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Council on American-Islamic Relations