Call for Irish Government to Ensure No Ammunition Supplies to Israel Through Ireland

In recent days the US Department of Defence has confirmed the supply of more ammunition to Israel, despite its ongoing indiscriminate killing of civilians in Gaza. This will almost certainly result in more carnage and suffering, as Israel continues to use its military might against the captive Palestinian population. Many of the military airlift contractors that are likely to supply this ammunition pass through Shannon Airport regularly. It is vitally important that the Irish authorities do everything they can to ensure these carriers are not assisting the Israeli attacks on Gaza. That includes inspection of contracted US military aircraft, and an end to the granting of permits to take weapons and munitions through Shannon Airport.

"We know that since July 8th over 1,400 people have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza" said John Lannon of Shannonwatch. "Most of these were innocent civilians who have lived with a brutal and inhumane occupation for years. Israel has committed war crimes by bombing schools, hospitals and homes, and the US is now re-stocking their supplies of ammunition to enable them to continue to operate outside the law."

"These supplies could be coming through Shannon Airport on commercial carriers. Companies like Atlas Air, Federal Express, National Air Cargo, Omni Air International, UPS, Kalitta Air, US Airways and World Airways have contracts to provide international airlift services for the US Department of Defence. And they all use Shannon Airport regularly." said Mr Lannon.

The Irish Department of Transport provides permits to commercial carriers to carry munitions through Shannon and Irish airspace. In 2013, the department issued 693 permits. The vast majority of these were for US aircraft.

"If the Department of Transport or Minister Paschal Donoghue received a request to allow ammunition to be taken through Shannon to Israel would they refuse the permit?" asked Mr Lannon.

Given the very serious nature of what is happening in Gaza the Irish government cannot risk Shannon being used to arm the Israeli forces. Shannonwatch calls on Minister Donoghue to confirm he will not grant permits to take munitions through Irish airports or airspace to Israel.

"If the only way to achieve this is to issue no permits for the transportation of munitions, then that is what should be done." according to Shannonwatch.

Shannonwatch are also very concerned that carriers may be taking ammunitions covertly through Shannon to Israel. "We know that one contracted carrier, Kalitta Air, was discovered to have transported laser-guided missiles through Prestwick for the Israeli bombing of Lebanon in 2006.  If they or one of the other carriers was taking parts or ammunition to the Israeli army through Shannon today, would the Irish authorities even know about it?"

Given the very serious nature of what is happening in Gaza, the Irish government cannot risk Shannon being used to arm the Israeli forces. In addition to not issuing permits, Shannonwatch calls on them to put in place ongoing, routine inspections of all aircraft operated by US military contractors at Shannon. "This is the only way to ensure they are not carrying weapons illegally, and in particular that they are not supplying ammunition or military parts to Israel." said Shannonwatch.

Shannonwatch support the call for governments around the world to impose a military embargo on Israel.

"For our part, we must ensure there are no shipments of ammunition through Ireland to Israel. If we don't we may well have the blood of innocent Palestinian men, women and children on our hands."

Share this