PMB activist on aid ship to Gaza

2015-06-26 10:03
Pietermaritzburg lecturer and activist Clint Le Bruyns is on the Freedom Flotilla III ship to Gaza.

Pietermaritzburg lecturer and activist Clint Le Bruyns is on the Freedom Flotilla III ship to Gaza. (Supplied)

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UNIVERSITY of KwaZulu-Natal lecturer and Pietermaritzburg resident Clint le Bruyns is on board an aid ship heading to Gaza.

Le Bruyns is the only South African among world activists on the Freedom Flotilla III and is currently in an undisclosed location on the Mediterranean Sea.

Their mission, amidst the “concrete threat”, is to end Israel’s blockade on Gaza, to show international solidarity with the people of Gaza and the rest of Palestine and to bring aid to the people of Gaza in the form of supplies.

“The primary and most life-threatening danger surrounding this trip is the apartheid state of Israel. The violence of this regime is readily evident in its societal vision, values, practices, behaviour, policies, and daily actions. To be doing what it does to Palestinians in broad daylight and enjoy impunity, should we not be cognisant of the terrifying risks at sea when they board our boats like pirates in international waters, [take] us to an Israeli prison and then arrest us for illegally entering Israel, confiscate all our belongings, interrogate us for days, and who knows what else?

“But I embraced this invitation with an extremely strong ethical hand. I am committed to advancing dignity, freedom and justice in Pietermaritzburg, in South Africa, in Africa, in Palestine, and wherever I happen to be where I can be of some possible use,” said Le Bruyns.

Nine activists were shot dead, at point-blank range, during the first Freedom Flotilla in 2010.

Le Bruyns is the director and senior lecturer of the theology and development programme at the Pietermaritzburg UKZN campus and is part of the PMB-4-Palestine action group.

Le Bruyns says he hopes they reach Gaza in spite of the illegal blockade by Israel. “I would like to see that no life is harmed or humiliated in the process and that media reports on Palestine-Israel move further away from the longstanding bias of Israel the victim to the harsh realities on the ground impacting on Gaza and the rest of Palestine.”

He added international communities should become “virtual sailors” and support and follow Freedom Flotilla III.

Clint Le Bruyns is a South African activist in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for freedom, dignity and justice. He serves within the National Coalition for Palestine, KZN Palestine Solidarity Forum, and PMB-4-Palestine action group. He is particularly engaged with conscientising, advising and mobilising churches around the Palestinian liberation struggle and its global solidarity movement.

Le Bruyns is a Christian public theologian. He is Senior Lecturer in Theology and Development, and Director of the Theology and Development Programme at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. He is also adjunct professor at Eastern University, USA. His area of expertise is in public theology and ethics.

He co-edited The Humanization of Globalization (Germany, 2008), Ragbag Theologies (South Africa, 2009), and Teologia Pública no Brasil e na África do Sul (Brazil, 2014).

Clint Le Bruyns is Radio Presenter on a weekly talk radio programme #WorkMatters for Radio Al-Ansaar at its Pietermaritzburg studio

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  gaza

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