Palestinians Prepare for 'Great Return March'

Published March 26th, 2018 - 03:21 GMT
 Palestinian flag (AFP/File Photo)
Palestinian flag (AFP/File Photo)

Gaza-based members of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) convened Monday near the Gaza Strip’s eastern border with Israel in the run-up to a mass demonstration -- dubbed the “Great Return March” -- planned for Friday. 

In a special tent erected for the occasion, PLC Deputy Speaker Ahmed Bahar declared: “We have convened an unprecedented session near the temporary border [with Israel] with the aim of reaching our lands occupied in 1948.”  

Bahar described Monday’s meeting on the border as “an affirmation of the sanctity of Palestinian rights, which we will never forsake”. 

He also stressed the PLC’s support for the planned Friday rallies, during which, he said, “Our children will set up numerous tents along the strip’s [eastern] border [with Israel].”

The tents, he explained, “are intended to represent the many Palestinian towns and villages from which we were expelled 70 years ago”.  

 

 

According to Bahar, the rallies are also meant to “raise awareness about Israel’s crimes” in hopes of “prompting the international community to bear its legal, moral and humanitarian responsibilities vis-à-vis the Palestinian people”. 

All major Palestinian factions have endorsed the planned rallies, during which demonstrators plan to converge en masse on the Gaza Strip’s roughly 45-kilometer-long eastern border with Israel.  

While the event is meant to ratchet up pressure on Israel to lift its decade-long blockade of the strip, it is also intended to reiterate the Palestinians’ right to return to their homes in historical Palestine.

The Hamas-run Gaza Strip has groaned under a crippling Israeli/Egyptian blockade since 2007.

The embargo has largely destroyed the enclave’s economy and deprived its roughly 2 million inhabitants of many basic commodities, including food, fuel and medicine.

 

This article has been adapted from its original source


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