Australian Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, Julie Bishop in early September visited Israel, where she met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Bishop invited Netanyahu to officially visit Australia in early 2017 saying that she wanted to "reaffirm our absolute enduring commitment to the state of Israel and our friendship" and that she believed that "the Australian public would warmly embrace you, welcome you".
As Prime Minister, Netanyahu has been responsible for Israel's illegal blockade of Gaza, as well as Israel's ongoing occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Golan Heights.
In 2014, Netanyahu ordered Israel's 50 day murderous assault on Gaza, which resulted in the death of more than 2,250 Palestinians, including almost 1,500 civilians, one third of whom were children, along with 299 women. In addition, more than 11,230 Palestinians were injured, including 3,436 children and 3.540 women. Amongst those killed were 142 Palestinian families, who made up 742 of the fatalities.
During the murderous assault Netanyahu ordered more than 6,000 airstrikes and the firing of more than 50,000 tank and artillery shells on the imprisoned population of Gaza.
In July 2014, Netanyahu also confirmed that Israel had no intention of ending its illegal occupation and oppression of more than 4.5 million Palestinians in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
While Julie Bishop and the Liberals, who supported Israel's assault on Gaza and the US's bloody wars in the Middle East, continue to carry out human rights abuses against refugees and asylumseekers and Australia's Indigenous community, may welcome a fellow war criminal and human right abusers, we are calling on all people of conscience and supporters of human rights to give Benjamin Netanyahu the real welcome he deserves when he arrives in Australia.
Please join us at 6pm on Wednesday, 22 February at the State Library of Victorian in Melbourne to protest the visit of a war criminal to Australia , as well as the Turnbull and Liberal government's continued support for Israel's illegal occupation and war crimes against the Palestinian people.
Please invite friends, family and other supporters and share this event with your networks and on your social media.
Venue: State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston Street Melbourne