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Reaction to What’s Happening in Palestine: Massive Solidarity Protests Worldwide

posted on: May 19, 2021

Thousands gather during a rally to support Palestine at Copley Square in Boston, Massachusetts on May 15, 2021
Picture by : Joseph Prezioso / France24

By Noura Abou Hamze / Arab America Contributing Writer

The protests were held on the anniversary of Nakba Day, or “catastrophe”, that saw hundreds of thousands of Palestinians displaced during Israel’s creation in 1948 .Tens of thousands of people from more than 100 cities and different countries have taken to the streets around the world, from the USA and UK, to Beirut, and Yemen demanding an end to the Israeli air raids on the Gaza Strip as the worst violence in years has flared. People are seen in different cities chanting “Free Palestine” and demanding the basic human rights for the Palestinians.

People were chanting “End Israeli Apartheid” and “Free Palestine” and “From the River to the Sea , Palestine will be Free”, not only that but many people were seen driving their cars and having loud Palestinian songs on like ” Dammi Falasteeni” that translates to a song that says “My Blood is Palestinian”. Also, the attracting thing is that not only Arabs were protesting but people from everywhere including Jewish people. The Nakba Anniversary had people protesting in all over the world.

The countries that were protesting included Jordan where people gathered in front of the Israeli Embassy and were chanting “Shame” and ” Death to Israel”, not only that but in Yemen, a country facing famine, thousands of people gathered in Sanaa to protest. During the protest, demonstrators were seen calling for  boycotting Israeli  and American goods, as well as chanting different chants.

New Zealand , Ireland, India, and London as well as Madrid had thousands of protesters seen protesting in support of Palestine. France had seen protests too, however the government has banned protests in support of Palestine and had used tear gas and water cannons against Palestinians. In India ,the police arrested 21 people in Kashmir for organizing protests in support of Palestine. Furthermore, Belgium had more than 7000 protestors showing solidarity and support for Palestinian people. In Turkey, and despite the lockdown due to COVID19, people from different countries including Syria were seen protesting in Istanbul outside the Israeli Embassy. Also, thousands of Germans took to the streets on Saturday May 15, 2021 in major cities, among them Berlin, Cologne, Stuttgart, and Hamburg for the second consecutive day to voice solidarity . However, they were faced by the police where they broke their peaceful demonstrations due to violations of COVID19 laws.

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators light flares during a protest against Israel near the Israeli Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey late May 10, 2021. REUTERS/Dilara Senkaya
REUTERS/Dilara Senkaya

Also, Japan was among the countries who showed support, about 300 people have marched in central Tokyo to call for an immediate halt to Israeli military attacks on the Gaza Strip. The protesters rallied after attending Friday prayers at a mosque in Shibuya Ward. The United Kingdom has seen one of the largest protests in the world, including 150,000 people approximately protesting against the inhumane actions taken by Israel.

In Canada  for example, a gathering of between 2,500 to 5,000 people in Toronto at Nathan for a vocal but relatively peaceful protest. In Sudan , Khartoum  tens of people also gathered against Israel’s actions.  In South Africa, hundreds have supported Palestine. Protesters were waving Palestinian flags and placards marched to the South African parliament to express their dissatisfaction with Israel.

Hundreds in South Africa protest for Palestine
Sudan / Picture by : Hassan Isilow

Not only did people from around the world gather to support Palestinians, but different states in the United States including Washington DC, Michigan, New York, California, Georgia, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and more. Many Palestinians and other groups that support the Palestine cause marched and rallied across different states. The numbers of people who marched at these protests were historic and included many from the younger generation who are holding Israel accountable and are demanding justice for Palestinians. Also, Palestine called May 18th, 2021 as a national day of action. Protests were organized in front of Israeli consulates and embassies, and elsewhere in the United States.

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