Please find below the speech given by Tony Burke, Assistant General Secretary of Unite the Union, to support the motion in support of Palestine at Labour Conference 2019 – you can read the motion passed here:
“Tony Burke, Unite, proud to speak in support of this motion in support of the Palestinian people – a motion that highlights the escalating attacks taking place against them.
Today, we call upon our labour movement to return to its greatest tradition: solidarity.
From the ranks of this movement, our comrades have fought and died in the battle against fascism in Spain, have campaigned for the end to British colonial rule around the world and played a crucial role bringing down the evils of apartheid in South Africa.
This motion calls for our solidarity at a critical moment. The Palestinians, already occupied and besieged, are now facing a new attack.
There is a need for a strong determined show of solidarity to confront the Trump sponsored ‘Deal of the Century’, which is nothing less than a concerted attempt to destroy the Palestinian cause by stopping all vital funding to the humanitarian agency UNRWA for Palestinian refugees, increasing the siege of Gaza, and rapidly expanding illegal settlements.
The motion calls for Labour to address this by adopting an ethical and internationalist foreign policy, including by ending arms sales to Israel that are used for aggression and human rights abuses.
Comrades, as our movement has always taught, an injury to one is an injury to all. This motion gives us a chance to stand alongside the Palestinian people, who are facing the massive forces arrayed against them with dignity, with fortitude and with courage.
They do not struggle alone.”