Demonstrators take to streets of Bellingen to protest war in Gaza

Bellingen and Nambucca District Rural Australians for Refugees members display placards calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

MEMBERS of the Bellingen and Nambucca District Rural Australians for Refugees group held a roadside demonstration in Bellingen last week to draw attention to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Demonstrators held placards demanding a ceasefire and an end to the “Gaza genocide”.

Foodworks Supermarket MacksvilleAdvertise with News of The Area today.
It’s worth it for your business.
Message us.
Phone us – (02) 4981 8882.
Email us –

“The events of 7 October were truly terrible, but, as the Secretary General of the United Nations reminded us, the Hamas attack did not take place in a vacuum,” said group spokesperson Mike Griffin of Valla Beach.

“The Gaza Strip has been blockaded by the Israelis for sixteen years, and there have been four major incursions by the Israeli military during that period, resulting in the deaths of thousands of Palestinians.

“What is happening now in the Gaza Strip is not a war of self defence.

“The Israeli military have razed much of Gaza to the ground and have destroyed hospitals, schools, United Nations evacuation centres, churches, mosques and all essential infrastructure.”

Foreign Minister Penny Wong travelled to the Middle East this week to “support international diplomatic efforts towards a durable peace” in the region.

“One hundred days since the October 7 terror attacks, I will use Australia’s voice to advocate for a pathway out of the current conflict, an increase in vital humanitarian assistance, upholding of international law and greater protection for civilians, preventing regional escalation, and working toward a lasting peace,” Ms Wong said.

“In my engagement with officials in Israel, I will convey Australia’s support for Israel’s security and its right to defend itself in the face of terrorism, while stressing that the way it does so matters.

“I will reaffirm Australia’s call for the immediate and unconditional release of hostages and meet with the families of hostages and survivors of the terror attacks on October 7.

“I will make clear Australia’s support for Palestinians’ right to self-determination and commitment to meeting humanitarian need in Gaza and the West Bank with officials in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

“I will also emphasise Australia’s opposition to the forcible displacement of Palestinians and our view that Gaza must no longer be used as a platform for terrorism.”

Mr Griffin described the lack of a call for a ceasefire by Ms Wong as “truly shameful”.

It has also been reported that Ms Wong will not visit the sites of the October 7 terror attacks in the south of Israel, with the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (EJAC) describing the move as “insulting” and “deeply concerning”.

“Personally inspecting the south and witnessing the carnage and destruction would not only convey Australia’s support, it is essential to understanding the depth of evil that Israel faces and the necessity of its war to defeat Hamas,” ECAJ CEOs Alex Ryvchin and Peter Wertheim said.

“We frequently hear about the depth of the alliance between the two countries and the long history of solidarity between Australian Labor and the people of Israel.

“This is the time to show that this is more than mere words.

“Intentionally bypassing such a visit is a serious error of judgement and we hope the Foreign Minister reconsiders this decision.”

Leave a Reply