Demonstrators march through Sheffield calling for a free Palestine

‘We are showing our solidarity with those in Palestine’

Crowds of people marched through Sheffield city centre on Saturday as part of a free Palestine protest.

The protest took place due to a surge in violence in Israel and Gaza last month, with at least 240 people killed. Most of those deaths have been Palestinians within Gaza territory. The conflict followed weeks of escalating Israel-Palestinian tension in East Jerusalem. This resulted in clashes at a holy site respected by both Muslims and Jews.

Thousands of Palestinians have been forced to flee their homes- carrying children and valued possessions- as Israeli forces pounded territory from air, sea and land. This has left many feeling vulnerable, empty and hopeless.

Protesters held placards and banners and chanted “free, free Palestine” and “1,2,3,4 occupation no more, 5,6,7,8 Israel is a terror state”.

Abdullah, the leader of the protest said: “We are showing our solidarity with those in Palestine. We are protesting against Israeli forces and government for positive change.

“We want people to get involved and educate themselves about what is happening in Palestine- water is undrinkable, portions are limited, and people have no idea.”

The protest ended at Sheffield Town Hall where protesters started cheering and waving their flags.

The leader of the protest stood at the centre and said: “It’s not just protests where we show our faces and show support. We have to get involved.

“Even if it’s for ten minutes, come and join one of our meetings and see how you can get involved and help to raise awareness for Palestine.”

Over the week, similar protests have taken place in Leeds, Manchester and Huddersfield with students protesting for freedom in Palestine.

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