Global Nakba Day rallies in support of Palestinian struggle
The German city of Berlin banned Nakba Day demonstrations over alleged risk of 'anti-Semitic' and 'inflammatory' rhetoric
By News Desk - May 15 2022

(Photo credit: Al Jazeera)

On the 74th anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba – Arabic for catastrophe – on 15 May, demonstrations and vigils around the world were held in the days leading up to and including the day of the Nakba anniversary.

The Nakba was the beginning of several bloody massacres and ethnic cleansing campaigns carried out by UK-backed Jewish militant groups against the Palestinian people in 1948, with the goal of forcing them out of the cities and towns that were coveted by the newly formed state of Israel.

Those who were not killed in massacres were forced out of their lands in what would become one of the world’s largest refugee populations.

For 74 years, Palestinians and their supporters around the world have upheld the memory of these massacres and ethnic cleansing campaigns to remind the world of the way in which the state of Israel was created.

However, this year, not all people were freely able to speak out on the historical atrocities committed against the Palestinian people.

A court in Germany upheld a ban on all Nakba Day demonstrations in Berlin, following a ruling issued on 13 May, claiming the demonstrations pose a risk for so-called “inflammatory” and “anti-Semitic” speech.

Event organizers slammed the ruling, calling it an attack on freedom of assembly and freedom of expression.

“The events were banned under false pretexts, in a move that represents a confiscation of the people’s right to commemorate forced displacement from their villages and cities,” Hamas spokesman Abdel Latif al-Qanoua stated on 14 May in reaction to the Berlin court ruling.

In occupied Palestine, activists were assaulted by Israeli forces on Tel Aviv University campus for holding Nakba demonstrations.

Elsewhere around the world, massive attendance marked the Nakba rallies.

On 14 May, thousands gathered in front of the UK state-funded BBC News headquarters in London prior to marching towards 10 Downing Street, the headquarters of the British prime minister.

Demonstrations took place in Oslo, Norway, a city historically linked to the normalization of ties between the Palestinian Liberation Organization – which would soon form the leadership in the Palestinian Authority (PA) – and the state of Israel. The PA is increasingly viewed in an unfavorable light by Palestinians due to its cooperation with Israeli authorities.

Further demonstrations took place in Sydney, New York, Paris, and elsewhere.

These mobilizations also come in the wake of the murder of journalist Shireen Abu Aqla Nasri by Israeli forces on 11 May, in addition to the brutal attack by Israeli forces on her funeral procession.

Experts agree that the vulnerability of the security apparatus of Israel has been exposed as of late, with several Palestinian armed retaliatory operations carried out successfully across the occupied West Bank and 1948 occupied cities.

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