Israeli Merkava tanks roll near the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip as they return from the Hamas-controlled Palestinian coastal enclave on August 5, 2014, after Israel announced that all of its troops had withdrawn from Gaza
Israeli Merkava tanks roll near the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip as they return from the Hamas-controlled Palestinian coastal enclave on August 5, 2014, after Israel announced that all of its troops had withdrawn from Gaza © Thomas Coex - AFP/File
Israeli Merkava tanks roll near the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip as they return from the Hamas-controlled Palestinian coastal enclave on August 5, 2014, after Israel announced that all of its troops had withdrawn from Gaza
AFP
Last updated: August 9, 2014

Fidel Castro signs pro-Palestine manifesto

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Former Cuban president Fidel Castro has signed an international manifesto "supporting Palestine," demanding that Israel respect UN resolutions and withdraw from Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Castro, who will be 88 next week, added his signature to those of intellectuals and politicians to the document "In Defense of Palestine," the official Granma newspaper said Saturday.

Bolivian President Evo Morales, Argentine artist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Perez Esquivel, Cuban dancer Alicia Alonso and American writer Alice Walker were also among the signatories.

The manifesto was promoted by the Network in Defense of Humanity, which includes several Latin American groups.

It asks governments around the world to demand Israel respect United Nations Security Council Resolution 242, adopted in the aftermath of the Six-Day War of 1967.

It calls for Israel to withdraw from the territories gained during the conflict.

In recent weeks, Latin America has been at the forefront of condemnation of the Israeli offensive in the crowded Palestinian enclave, offering almost unanimous support to the Palestinians.

Castro himself has accused Israel of engaging in a "new form of fascism" through the deadly military operation.

The conflict has killed at least 1,913 Palestinians and 67 people on the Israeli side, almost all soldiers, since July 8.

Harsh criticism has also come from Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro.

Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and El Salvador have also recalled their ambassadors to Israel for consultations, while Bolivia, where thousands of people protested Friday to denounce the conflict, placed Israel on a list of "terrorist states."

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, however, has been more muted in his response, leaving his envoy in Tel Aviv.

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