PHILADELPHIA (Jul. 29)
Some two dozen members of a newly formed local Jewish grass-roots activist coalition, Pa’eel, picketed the Mexican Consulate here yesterday for two hours to protest against Mexico’s continuing anti-Israel policies. The demonstrators carried large posters, reading: “Betrayed by Mexico,” “Mexico Favors Amin and Terrorists.” “Eliminate Mexican Travels,” “Mexico Denounces Israeli Action in Uganda” and “Tan-in Tel Aviv.”
Dr. Ronald Banner, spokesman for Pa’eel, told a reporter for the Jewish Exponent, “We want a travel ban on Mexico to continue until there’s visible, tangible proof for Israel that Mexico will change its policy.” Banner, an internist at Einstein Medical Center, organized the new organization which has been meeting since April to “seek a firmer posture on issues affecting Israel and the local Jewish community, through responsible action.”
Albert Liss, national executive director of Brith Sholom, who came out to support the protest, said his organization reaffirmed its tour boycott of Mexico at its national convention shortly after Mexico sent its letter to the UN Security Council condemning Israel’s rescue mission in Uganda.
Representatives of the Jewish Community Relations Council are planning to meet the Mexican Consul to discuss the local Jewish community’s “outrage at Mexico’s condemnation of Israel’s rescue of the terrorist-held hostages in Uganda.” According to Esther Polan, JCRC president, her organization hopes to confirm its belief that Mexico’s UN actions do not represent the sentiments of the Mexican people, but rather the personal ambition of its President, Luis Echeverria.
Yesterday’s demonstration at the Mexican Consulate was peaceful. The Consulate closed its offices for the day.