On Saturday 7th of April, a peaceful demonstration in solidarity for the Palestinian people was held in Truro, alongside many others around the UK.
Around twenty protesters gathered in Lemon Quay opposite the Hall for Cornwall to speak out against the shooting of Palestinian demonstrators on the Gaza boarder fired by the Israeli soldiers and calling for the British government to condemn the attacks.
Alana Bates, organiser of the protest and member of “Cornwall Stop the War Coalition”, told Truthfal: “There is a big demo in London today that has been organised by Palestine Solidarity Campaign and we wanted Cornwall to be able to have a voice and to stand with the Palestinians as well, especially seeing the terrible murders that are taking place at the Gaza boarder at the moment.”
A total of 34 Palestinians have been killed and more than 1,000 wounded since the 30th of March, which marked the start of the six-week long protest, dubbed the Great March Return, where thousands of Palestine people have been taking part demanding the right to return.
Anthony Matthews, a protester at the “Solidarity for Gaza” demonstration in Truro, told Truthfal: “We are here because of the intolerable situation in Gaza: it is the world’s biggest air-prison for goodness sake. We have a mounting casualty list, people being attacked and shot by the IDF for protesting. It’s unacceptable, it’s a world scandal, and that’s why we are here today.”
Cathy Smith and William Kitto, two protesters at the demonstration, said that they were “horrified and appalled by the indiscriminate shootings”. They added that British government should demand Israel to take into account their “unacceptable practices” and stand up and represent the people by condemning Israel’s actions.
Among the many people who stopped and talked to the protesters, there was Ammar, a doctor in the area, who told Truthfal: “It means a lot for the people. It is much appreciated. It is a peaceful demonstration to show the solidarity for the people there.”
Bates claimed that is very important to speak about the situation in Gaza for the Palestinians, to make sure they know “the world has not forgot them”. She added that absolutely no one at the protest was anti-Semitic, but they were there to criticize “the state of Israel for murdering people and keeping them in a prison”.
The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has praised Israel’s security forces, releasing a statement thanking his troops for “guarding the country’s borders” and allowing “Israeli citizens to celebrate the [Passover] holiday peacefully”.
The Great March Return protests are due to end on the 15th of May, known as Nakba (catastrophe), which marks the 70th year from the displacement of Palestinians during the conflict surrounding the creation of Israel.
If you wish to know more about “Cornwall Stop the War Coalition”, check out its Facebook page here.