Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem sign open letter condemning Israel for 'genocide' in Gaza

The letter was signed by Spanish actors, directors and musicians

Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem are among the Spanish stars behind an open letter condemning Israel’s bombardment of Gaza as “genocide”.

The actors demanded a stronger response by the European Union to stop the military operation that has so far killed more than 1,200 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

Civilians, including many children, have made up the majority of those killed in the offensive that Israel says is necessary to stop Hamas firing rockets at its cities.

The letter, printed by Europa Press and other Spanish news outlets, reads: "Gaza is living through horror these days, besieged and attacked by land, sea and air.

"Palestinians' homes are being destroyed, they are being denied water, electricity [and] free movement to their hospitals, schools and fields while the international community does nothing."

Labelling the Israeli military the "Israel Occupation Forces", it demanded an immediate ceasefire and urged Israel to "lift the blockade, which the Gaza Strip has suffered for more than a decade".

It blamed the latest hostilities on Israel’s advancement into Palestinian territories instead of observing the 1967 borders pre-dating the Six-Day War.

The letter said that Israel "humiliates, detains, and tramples on the rights of the Palestinian population in all of the West Bank every day, also causing many deaths".

Among the letter’s signatories were directors Pedro Almodovar and Benito Zambrano, actors Lola Herrera, Eduardo Noriega and Rosa Maria Sarda and two musicians, Amaral and Nacho Campillo.

Bardem, who won an Oscar in 2008 for his role in No Country for Old Men, is known for his political activism.

He previously wrote a letter published in El Diaro on the Gaza conflict, saying the attacks "only breed more hate and violence".

Video: The latest from Gaza

The actor wrote: "In the horror happening right now in Gaza there is no place for distance or neutrality… It's hard to understand and impossible to justify. And it's disgraceful that western countries are permitting such genocide."

Bardem and Cruz married in 2010 and have two children together.

The backlash to the letter has already started, with outrage among people supporting Israel’s actions on Twitter.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a US-based Jewish human rights group, responded with a statement saying Israel "did not start this war".

"It did what every country on this planet, including Spain, would do if hundreds of rockets were hurled at their population centres by an internationally known terrorist organisation," said founder Rabbi Marvin Hier.

Zayn Malik, Rihanna, Bill Maher and John Legend are among other celebrities to give their thoughts on the conflict in Gaza, sparking outrage on both sides.

Read more: Zayn Malik gets death threats for Palestine support
Rihanna deletes #freepalestine tweet
Piers Morgan branded 'zionist scum' after Israel tweets
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Chief Executive

£28, 700: Whiskey Whiskey Tango: Property Management Company is seeking a brig...

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence