For several hours on Sunday, March 30th, hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists blockaded the Lisgar GO railway, located in so-called Mississauga, Ontario. The GO train system serves millions of commuters between different hubs throughout Canada. Activists were protesting to demand that the Canadian government stop supplying arms to the State of Israel.
Pro-Palestinians protesters occupied Lisgar go railway in #mississauga, Canada and demanded arms embargo on Israel.#mississaugaprotest #canada🇨🇦 #canadastandswithpalestine #savesheikhjarrah #savepalestine #savesilwan #savelifta🇵🇸 #freepalestine pic.twitter.com/sTVDkYmG9n
— Mehdi Eliefifi (@MehdiEliefifi) May 31, 2021
The Palestinian protesters have occupied the railway in Mississauga. They’re demanding an arms embargo on Israel. Spread the word. pic.twitter.com/v9ejYClYso
— Hammam Farah (@HumHum83) May 31, 2021
One activist on social media posted following the demonstration:
After a three-hour shutdown of the railway, surrounded by police, with trains stopped dead in their tracks, we’ve dispersed with our heads held high. Thanks to all those who stood in solidarity with us. We will continue to fight for our families in Palestine. #StopArmingIsrael
This is not the first time anti-colonial movements have utilized train blockades as a tactic in struggle across so-called Canada. In the Spring of 2020, #ShutDownCanada demonstrators and Native warriors shutdown GO trains throughout Canada in protest against attacks on Wet’suwet’en sovereignty by the state of Canada and extraction industries.
Heads up Seattle – #BlocktheBoat action on June 2nd led by @falastiniyat! Text your name to 833-584-1948 for updates. Block the apartheid-profiteering Israeli shipping company, ZIM, from docking anywhere! Part of International week of action: https://t.co/PSWNwBhDCa pic.twitter.com/OoRLZnbwoF
— AROC #BlocktheBoat (@AROCBayArea) May 29, 2021
The recent rail blockades are only the latest in a series of mass demonstrations in solidarity with Palestine, not only in the Mississauga area, but across the world. It would also seem as if the tactics of blockading are spreading, as multiple cities on various coasts have signaled they are ready to “Block the Boat,” in an effort to blockade Israeli goods from being imported into the US. Already in Oakland, California, where mass demonstrations in 2014 blocked a similar boat, just the threat of repeat blockades has prevented the “Israeli-operated ZIM cargo ship from docking” for 10 days. Port workers with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) have also issued statements in solidarity with “Palestine and Palestinian communities across the world.”
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) Northern CA District Council stands in solidarity with Palestine and Palestinian communities across the world who are fighting for justice. – May 25, 2021 #BlockTheBoat https://t.co/XCHxPES8v9 pic.twitter.com/u8wbxWnyeS
— AROC #BlocktheBoat (@AROCBayArea) May 28, 2021