Several thousand pro-Palestinian protesters at the port of Oakland in California have claimed that their protest has delayed an Israeli container ship from docking.
The Zim Piraeus was due to dock at the port early on Saturday but remained at sea seemingly in response to the protestors who intended to form a picket line to prevent the ship from being unloaded.
The Guardian reports that Sameh Ayesh, a 21-year-old Palestinian activist with the San Francisco-based Arab Youth Organisation, led the crowd in a chant. “We’re gonna block the boat. Block, block the boat.”
Zim Lines is the largest Israeli shipping company, and a Zim Lines ship docks every Friday night around 9:00 pm at the Oakland port for early morning offloading.
The protesters hope to generate momentum for boycotts, divestment and sanctions against the Israeli government in response to violence in Gaza.
A similar blockade against a Zim vessel took place in 2010, when pro-Palestinian activists formed picket lines in response to Israel’s attack on a flotilla ferrying humanitarian outreach workers to Gaza.