Hundreds join the Palestine organising assembly in Oxford

Over 200 people joined a Palestine organising assembly in Oxford on Tuesday—and another 150 couldn’t even get inside the town hall.

Speakers sent out a rallying call to plan actions on 7 February, the day of workplace and student action called by Stop The War. The breakout groups that followed the speeches became organising centres for the day.

We suggested that the people who couldn’t get inside go as a group to a nearby shopping centre and watch the meeting together via live stream. Many did, and around 80 returned to join the breakout sessions. 

Speakers included Palestinian writer Ghada Karmi, anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappe, Irish socialist TD Richard Boyd Barrett and Nick Maynard, an Oxford consultant surgeon who’d just returned form Al Aqsa hospital. Andrew Murray from the Stop The War Coalition, councillor Jabu Nala Hartley and student activist Katie Coles also spoke. 

The meeting was supported by Oxford Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Oxford Ramallah Friendship Association, Help the World Oxford, Oxford Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Oxford PalSoc and STW. 

Union branches backing it included, Oxford and District Trades Council, CWU union south central post Oxford City Unison, Oxfordshire Unison Health, Oxfordshire NEU, Oxon and Bucks DWP PCS. And Oxfordshire NEU has also made a large donation towards a coach for the next national demo on 3 February—which is filling fast. 

Actions planned: 

Oxford UCU university union members are planning a lunchtime vigil. They plan to coordinate with students in the Palestine Society and the Socialist Worker Student Society who are planning a walkout, march & teach-in 
CWU union reps are planning to tour Royal Mail offices to take solidarity photos with posters to post up on social media on and build a 7 February march. They’ll have slogans including, “Posties for Palestine,” and, “Stop bombing Gaza.”
A small group of parents are setting up a Parents for Palestine Oxford group 
Oxfordshire NEU education union reps are hoping to organise lunchtime protests with Educators for Palestine placards. 
Health workers are planning a lunchtime vigil at the Warneford Hospital.
Oxford PSC have called a mass march and rally at 5pm on 7 Feb.  
A small group of school students are hoping to do a “Stop bombing Gaza” banner drop in the centre of Oxford. 
A young Muslim teacher has set up a WhatsApp group to organise action across schools. 

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