International Protests Against Assault on Palestine

Carl Desjardins, Saturday, April 6, 2002 - 16:22

Julie Hyland

Mass protests have swept across the world in protest at Israel’s murderous assault on the Palestinian Authority.

From the Middle East to Asia and Europe, tens of thousands have condemned the Israeli army’s brutal occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip and demanded an end to the siege of Yasser Arafat in Ramallah.

Their anger has been directed in equal measure against the regime of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and the US administration of President George W. Bush, which is held responsible for enabling Israel’s onslaught.

In the Lebanon, protests involving thousands of Palestinian refugees housed in squalid displacement camps have sprung up. Demonstrations took place in Rashidieh refugee camp, Bourj Shamali and Lebanon’s largest camp and Ain Al-Hilweh on the outskirts of Sidon.

Shop owners in Sidon closed their businesses on April 2 in order to join the protests, which were the largest by Palestinians in Lebanon since the 1991 Gulf War. Demonstrators chanted, “We want to blow up embassies if Arafat becomes a martyr. We want to hijack planes if Arafat becomes a martyr.

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