May 20, 2024

Maritime Union statement on Gaza and Port protests

The Maritime Union of New Zealand says it supports the right of the community to take part in peaceful protests at ports and elsewhere.

Community protests are planned against Israeli-connected container ships at the Port of Auckland as international pressure mounts for a ceasefire in the Gaza conflict. 

The Contship Dax operated by ZIM Integrated Shipping has already been the focus of protest action in Australian ports last week and the ship will be calling in New Zealand ports in the next week, including Tauranga, Auckland and Lyttelton.

Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison says the Union is backing international calls for a ceasefire in the Israel–Gaza conflict.

He says the Union endorses calls by Labour Party leader Chris Hipkins, the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions, and the International Transport Workers Federation supporting a ceasefire and a political solution to the conflict.  

“The Maritime Union condemns any attacks on civilians, and we recognize the long standing political issues including the oppression of the Palestinian people that have contributed to the current catastrophe.”

Mr Harrison says protests at ports are occurring throughout the world and are likely to become more common as concern mounts at the rising death toll of civilians in Gaza.

He says the Maritime Union strongly opposes any form of religious or ethnic discrimination including anti-semitism or anti–Muslim prejudice.

“As a Union we are united as workers and support all efforts towards international solidarity, justice and peace.” 

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