Photo: AP
Nakba Day in Gaza
Photo: AP

Gaza: Low-key events to mark Nakba

Palestinians commemorate 'Catastrophe' with especially modest rallies against backdrop of internal tensions in PA

Thousands of Palestinians gathered in Gaza Monday in front of the Palestinian Legislative Council building to mark the 58th anniversary of the Nakba (The Catastrophe), the Palestinian answer to Israel's Independence Day.


Participants in the rally listened to speeches by representatives of the different organizations, who spoke of the "sacred" Right of Return, which they claimed no political organization has the right to concede. The demonstrators voiced their opposition to all initiatives designed to solve the conflict, based on establishing a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders while ceding the Right of Return.

Commemorating Palestinian 'Catastrophe Day' in Gaza (Photo: AP)


The central rally, like others commemorating the Nakba in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, was relatively low-key, and held against the backdrop of tensions between the different Palestinian factions, especially Hamas and the rivaling Fatah movement. Speakers at the rallies stressed the need for maintaining domestic unity and for preventing violent clashes.


'I want to go back to Jaffa'


Haj Hassan al-Masri, a civilian who participated in the rally, said that Palestinians would sooner die of hunger than give up the Right of Return. "All the international pressure will not make us concede this right. I want to go back to Jaffa, as well as my children and all the refugees," al-Masri said.


Another Palestinian man who stood nearby explained that the Right of Return is only one of many problems the Palestinians are currently facing. "170,000 Palestinian Authority and security employees did not receive salaries in a long time, and they are not the only ones."


"They forget the tens of thousands of laborers who can't go to Israel for work, the thousands of employees in non-governmental organizations, in communications, and other institutions who are supposed to receive their salaries from abroad though the banks. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who support almost the entire Palestinian people have been living for nearly three months without getting their paychecks and with no income. This is impossible," the man said.


פרסום ראשון: 05.15.06, 14:41
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