By Umar Khan.
Tripoli, 17 November:
Between 450 and 500 people rallied in Tripoli’s . . .[restrict]Martyrs’ Square yesterday, Friday after the mid-afternoon Asr prayers in solidarity with Palestinians over the Israeli attacks on Gaza. There were Palestinian flags, pictures of the Dome of the Rock Mosque in Jerusalem as well as banners supporting the Palestinian cause and the Islamist group Hamas.
Many present questioned the inaction of the international community, whilst banners carried the message “Jerusalem – We are coming”.
The crowd was later joined by a small rally in support of the Syrian revolution, which had been taking place at the far end of the square. With both Syrian and the Palestinian flags, they chanted that the Palestinian cause was the heart of the Syrian revolution. Many had banners supporting the people of Gaza. One read “Gaza is the key to freedom”.
Most the demonstrators wore Palestinian scarves in a gesture of solidarity with Palestine.
At the demonstration was Sami Al-Sadi, the head of the Ummah Al-Wast party who withdrew his acceptance last week of Prime Minister Ali Zeidan’s offer of the Missing and Wounded ministry. Present too were Muhammad Sawan, head of the Justice & Construction Party (J&C) and Hisham Krekshi, the deputy head of the Tripoli local council who hopes to be council leader after the capital’s local elections are held in December. He is also a member of the J&C.
Speaking to the crowd, Sadi said that the Libyan people fully support the people of Gaza and that Libyan activists and leaders should reflect this by giving their full support to the Palestinian cause. Sawan said that “the Palestinian problem is not only for the Palestinians or the Arabs or the Muslims around the world but it is also a humanitarian problem”.
The demonstration was relatively small but this is being put down to the fact that it was hastily planned. The number of protestors clearly grow during the late afternoon as the people learnt of the demonstration and by the time the Libya Herald left, people were still arriving in the square to join in. [/restrict]