Demonstrations and rallies across the Arab and Islamic world kicked off in support of Gaza as Palestinians in the West Bank and the Strip have responded to Hamas’ call to mark “Day of Wrath” after Friday prayers.
Al-Manar correspondent in the West Bank said that Israeli occupation security forces have erected several roadblocks around the Aqsa mosque to prevent Palestinians from reaching Quds.
In territories occupied in 1948, the Palestinian follow up committee has announced a week of demonstrations, rallies and sit-ins in towns and villages including Tel Aviv and Haifa, while a central demonstration will take place in Sikhnin. The Israeli occupation army has ordered all entrances to the West Bank be closed as security forces were on very high alert across occupied Palestine in case of war, according to an Israeli police spokesman.
However, thousands of Palestinians were demonstrating in the West Bank city of Ramallah. "We will sacrifice our soul and our blood for Gaza," chanted the demonstrators, shouting out pro-Hamas slogans and calling on the resistance fighters to "hit Tel-Aviv."
Thousands of Gazans also defied the cold weather and Israel’s savage aggression and took to the streets of the bombarded city in a show of steadfastness and challenge to the Israeli killing machine. The demonstrators took part in the funeral of Hamas field commander martyr Nizar Rayan, who was assassinated Thursday.
Hundreds of prayers inside and outside the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus staged a sit-in Friday after performing the Friday prayer in solidarity with the Palestinians of Gaza and in condemnation of the Israeli brutal aggression on the Strip. The demonstrators expressed strong denunciation of the war of extermination waged by the Israeli occupation forces against the besieged defenseless population of Gaza Strip. They chanted slogans against the aggression, calling on the international community to take responsibly in stopping the aggression. The protestors called for cutting off all forms of relations with Israel, boosting up the Palestinian national unity through inter-dialogue among all the factions.
And in Tehran, a huge demonstration was organized after Friday prayers to protest Israel’s bloody aggression on Palestinians in Gaza. “Death to Israel, death to the US” they chanted and demanded an immediate halt to the Israeli war on Gaza. “We are calling for an immediate ceasefire, a halt to the attack and aid for the population of Gaza as well as an end to the blockade of the Palestinian territory and the opening up of all crossings,” Iran’s Foreign Minister Manucheher Mottaki said as he slammed the world’s inaction on Gaza. He added that Gazans were justified in their belief that some Arab countries have betrayed them.
Also in Turkey, thousands of people demonstrated and burnt Israeli flags. A senior official from Turkey's ruling party meanwhile condemned the operation as "a crime against humanity" and said Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert "deserved a pair of shoes to be thrown at him."
In Ankara, a deputy chairman of the ruling Justice and Development Party harshly criticized the Israeli operation in Gaza. The offensive "has reached the scale of a crime against humanity," Bulent Gedikli told Anatolia news agency, slamming the Zionist entity also for failing to facilitate the access of humanitarian aid for the Palestinians.
Meanwhile in Afghanistan, thousands took to the streets of Kabul and Herat to protest against Israel's strikes on Gaza, chanting anti-Israel slogans. The demonstrators burned an effigy of Israeli President Shimon Peres. The protesters also chanted anti-US slogans and the Afghan government of President Hamid Karzai.
And in Pakistan, thousands of demonstrators rallied in several cities, with some calling for a jihad, or holy war, against the Zionist entity. "The Islamic world failed to take timely action to stop Israeli action on Gaza," one of the leaders of the radical Jamaat-i-Islami party, Liaqat Baloch, told the demonstrators. He blasted the United Nations, the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and human rights groups for failing to prevent the "massacre of Palestinians" and called for UN sanctions against Israel.
Indonesians in Jakarta also demonstrated against the Israeli blitz on Gaza. Tens of thousands of Indonesians staged a protest after Friday prayers and marched towards the US embassy while chanting religious and anti-Israel-US slogans.
In Australia, thousands of people staged a protest after Friday prayers in Sydney. Holding Palestinian flags and pro-Palestinian banners, more than 4,000 demonstrators marched to the Parry Park and held prayers for the martyrs of Gaza. A makeshift coffin draped in the Palestinian flag was carried before the crowd, followed by a procession of eight imams.
In Manila, Muslims took to the streets of the Philippines capital and denounced Israel’s aerial and naval assault on the Gaza Strip. Protesters held placards accusing Israel of “war crimes.” The protest leader stressed “we are here with the rest of the world to express our outrage against the genocidal attack by Israel against the Palestinian people.”
Also in Srinagar in Kashmir, thousands demonstrated in the main town square shouting anti-Israel slogans and carrying Islamic flags. They also set an Israeli flag on fire.
Friday, 2 January 2009
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