BE IT Africa, Europe or the Middle East, protests in support of the Palestine cause have spread worldwide, as even nations busy dealing with their own problems have seen citizens hit the streets.
Although the Palestinian cause is seen a galvanizing factor for people from all parts, the humanitarian plight of the Gazans and the barbarity of the Israeli campaign against them has prompted massive outpourings, even in otherwise aloof Western cities and capitals.
One of the main protests on Sunday was staged in Brussels, where hundreds of people holding Palestinian national flags during a rally called ‘Gaza: stop massacres, stop impunity’ demonstrated in front of the European Commission building in Brussels.
Another large protest swept the streets of Rotterdam, while in Paris — despite a ban on pro-Palestinian demonstrations — hundreds gathered at the Place de la Republique to show their support for Gazans.
Copenhagen, Rotterdam, Paris and Brussels rocked by massive shows of solidarity with Gazans
French labour unions and organisations joined the rally, calling for peace and an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. In Jordan’s capital Amman, children waving Palestinian flags formed a human chain to show their support for the people of Gaza, while a massive crowd of demonstrators made their way to the Danish parliament in Copenhagen.
On Sunday, several thousand people also gathered in Sarajevo city centre on Sunday, waving Palestinian and Bosnian flags and demanding a halt to the Israeli offensive in Gaza.
“Genocide, genocide,” while a large and prominent banner read “Yesterday Srebrenica, today Gaza,” referring to the 1995 massacre in the Bosnian town, Europe’s worst atrocity since World War Two in which Serb forces killed an estimated 8,000 Muslim men and boys. Other demonstrators held banners with slogans including “Stop the war” and “Free Palestine”.
Bosnia is still recovering from its 1992-95 war, which left the country divided between two entities – Republika Srpska with a majority Serb Christian Orthodox population, and the Bosniak-Croat Federation which has a majority Muslim population.
Smaller pro-Palestinian protests also took place in Belgrade and Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro.
A day earlier, in a demonstration in Pristina, Kosovo, one protestor’s sign read, “Zionists are not Jews.”
In this eastern European city, thousands of people took to the streets over the weekend, driven by a deep sense of empathy for the suffering in Gaza.
In Indonesia, demonstrators marched from several mosques to the heavily guarded US Embassy in Jakarta, condemning American support for Israel and demanding an end to Israeli airstrikes.
Similar protests also occurred in front of the UN mission, not far from the embassy, and within the Indonesian Foreign Ministry’s compound. Around 1,000 people joined the rallies across Jakarta after Friday prayers in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation.
In Seoul, passionate demonstrators came together on Friday, demanding freedom for Palestine and urging Israel to halt its bombings in the Gaza Strip. The rally was organised by the progressive civic group Workers’ Solidarity and the local Muslim group Kore de Islam, both strongly denouncing the Israeli attacks on Gaza, The Korea Herald reported.
Approximately 700 participants, including members of civic groups, Palestinians, and other supporters, gathered near Itaewon Mosque and proceeded to march to Itaewon Station. They echoed chants like “No to ground invasion,” “Stop Israel’s bombing of Gaza,” and “Victory to Palestinian resistance.”
In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, a powerful gathering of over 1,000 people converged in the capital to call for an end to Israel’s actions they deemed as war crimes.
At the embassy, they voiced their opposition to Biden’s support of the Netanyahu government, which they believed enabled the IDF to conduct what they viewed as an ethnic cleansing campaign.
In Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, the Jamaat-i-Islami held a rally on Monday to strongly condemn the Israeli attacks on Gaza. They fervently called upon the Muslim world to ensure the safety and rights of the Palestinian people. Jamaat
The rally participants didn’t hold back in criticising the United Nations for remaining silent about the rights of Palestinians, failing to take necessary actions and not recognising the 75-year-long struggle of Palestinians in their quest to establish a peaceful sovereign state.
Published in Dawn, October 23rd, 2023