Freedom Flotilla Coalition meets in Gothenburg, Sweden to plan 2018 mission

7 Feb

Some of the delegates at the Freedom Flotilla Coalition conference at the Jarntorget Square, Gothenburg, Sweden. NZ rep Roger Fowler is fifth on the left.

Freedom Flotilla Coalition statement from the Gothenburg meeting 21 January 2018:

As Israel bans 20 organizations working for justice for the Palestinian people, and after Sweden recognized the state of Palestine, the international Freedom Flotilla Coalition met in Gothenburg, Sweden on January 20-21, 2018 to discuss the 2018 Flotilla mission which aims to challenge and break the illegal and inhumane Israeli naval blockade of Gaza. Details of this year’s voyage will be made available in the spring of 2018.

Representatives from campaigns in Sweden, Norway, Spain, Italy, Malaysia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States, and the International Committee on Breaking the Siege of Gaza were in Gothenburg for the Flotilla meeting, hosted by Ship to Gaza-Sweden.

 Roger Fowler, Kia Ora Gaza (NZ), and veteran US peace activist Ann Wright visit one of the flotilla boats in Sweden after the FFC meeting in Gothenburg. The boat is being prepared to join 3 other boats due to sail to Gaza later this year as the 2018 international Freedom Flotilla to break Israel’s blockade of the besieged Palestinian enclave.

In preparation for this year’s Flotilla mission, the international coalition is sponsoring a literary contest entitled “Keys to the Future of Palestine” related to particularly the plight of Palestinians in Gaza, to end the illegal blockade, for freedom of movement, the right of return and for justice for the Palestinian people (watch the FFC website: for further details).

Submissions are due March 1, 2018. One winner will be selected from submissions in each of the participating languages (Arabic, Spanish and English, at least). A jury for each language will be composed of persons from the literary and cultural world. Winning entries will be announced in the media, published on the FFC websites and other noteworthy places. The decisions of the juries will be announced on Palestinian Land Day, March 30, 2018.

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition and Free Gaza Movement before it have sailed 31 boats to break the blockade of Gaza since 2008. In 2018 we again sail to break the illegal and inhumane blockade of Gaza, to demand full freedom of movement for all Palestinians, and to challenge the occupation of Palestine.

First Freedom Flotilla literary contest:

“Keys to the Future of Palestine”

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition calls for the first international literary contest of short stories and poems related to Palestine, for the right of return and for a decent future of the Palestinian people. In particular, we are interested in stories and poems that highlight the plight of Palestinians living in Gaza, the world’s largest open air prison, and the need to end the illegal and inhumane Israeli blockade. There will be one winner selected from each participating language. Conditions:

  1. Any person who wishes can participate in the contest regardless of their nationality or residence.
  2. Each author can only present one short story or poem.
  3. The short stories or poems should meet the following conditions:
    – Not having been published before anywhere, including on the internet.
    – Not having received any prize in any other contest.
    – One original copy of each story or poem will be submitted. This will be written using the Arial font (12 pt. Size) with normal margins (2.5 cm top and bottom of page and 3 left and right) as in Word default settings. The length of the story or poem will not exceed five (5) pages.
    – The spacing between lines should be 1.5
    – The short stories or poems in English should be sent by email to this address <> clearly indicating in the subject: LITERARY CONTEST. The story or poem should be attached in a file named with the title of the text and another file containing only the following information: Title, author’s full name and nationality, author’s address, telephone number and email. The subject should be “Keys to the Future of Palestine” (and related to Palestine, the Nakba, refugees, expulsion, loss of property, etc.) written in either English or Spanish (ver las bases en español:
  4. Final date for submission of short stories is midnight on March 1, 2018.
  5. The jury for each language will be composed of persons related to the literary and cultural world. Their decision will be final. No jury member can participate in this contest.
  6. The jury for each language will decide on a winner and a runner up. Winning entries will be announced in the media, published on the FFC websites and other noteworthy places, and will be translated into various languages. Runners up and special mentions will be published on our different campaigns’ language-specific websites. The decisions will be communicated to the selected authors by email or phone call.
  7. The jury’s decisions will be announced on Land Day, March 30, 2018.
  8. Authors retain copyright of the text they submit but cede to the FFC and its member campaigns the right to publish their texts, online and in any other medium, without charge.
  9. Participation in the contest means acceptance of all and each of its conditions and the commitment to comply by them. The interpretation of these conditions as well as any other question related to the contest, will be decided by the jury. This literary contest is part of the preparation for the Freedom Flotilla’s plans to sail again in 2018, for Freedom of Movement and a Just Future for Palestine. Read more about these plans and our Solidarity with Gaza Fishers campaign here:


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