The March is On! Palestinian Youth Movement Protests Go Global
Bonnie King / Ken O'Keefe Salem-News.com
March 15th March in Palestine: End Of Division (الشعب يريد انهاء الانقسام)
Palestinian Youth Movement demands "No Division!" Photo by Ken O'Keefe
(SALEM / GAZA) - The Palestinian Youth Movement has planned a mass protest on March 15th for Gaza, for all Palestinians and to give hope to all occupied peoples. Organizers believe this youth initiative marks a turning point in the Middle East because it is a united effort to rise above all divisions in hopes of long overdue justice.
The mass protests are gaining momentum. Ken O'Keefe reports from Gaza, "The feeling is electric here in Palestine/Gaza. The March for Unity is tomorrow but the people are ready now. Many spending the night in El Jundi El Majhul (Unknown Soldier Square). Palestine United equals a Free Palestine!"
Groups are congregating around the globe, in support of Palestine's right to be free.
The youth groups organizing and mobilizing for this movement have offered the following information and clarifications of these points:
These protests are being organized under the banner of national unity and reconciliation. However, we emphasize that resolving the predicament of Palestinian disunity must be based on principles and values agreed upon by the Palestinian people regardless of their political affiliation. The first of these principles is the illegitimacy of imprisoning people based on their political beliefs. Consequently, we demand the release of all political prisoners held by the government in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank. Our demands for change go beyond ending Palestinian disunity and partial tweaks to the status quo. We insist onfull democratic representation for Palestinians all over the world.
Consequently our movement stipulates:
Democratic Palestinian National Council (PNC) elections based on a one-person one-vote electoral system that guarantees equal representation for all Palestinians around the world (Gaza Strip, West Bank, 48 territories, refugee camps, and in the Diaspora). This necessitates a complete overhaul of the PNC's structure and the establishment of new electoral procedures. Attempts to co-opt the March 15th Mass protests: Palestinian political parties, Hamas' government in Gaza, Fayyad's government in the West Bank, and a plethora of nongovernmental organizations are seeking to co-opt this movement to serve their narrow interests. Moreover, they are attempting to legitimize themselves by falsely stating that they are the main organizers behind this event. We open-heartedly welcome the participation of party members and NGO employees, who are an essential and inseparable part of our societal fabric. We do not welcome attempts by their leaders to redirect our efforts.
We affirm that the March 15th movement is by the people for the people, and is independent of any political party or institutional backing. It is being organized by non-partisan youth groups who dream of a better future for their people. We invite all Palestinians, and particularly Palestinian youth, to come down to the street on March 15th. We will only carry Palestinian flags, and chant and sing for freedom, unity, and justice. March 15th shall be the day we stand in unity to demand democratic representation for all Palestinians as an affirmative step in our struggle for Freedom from Israeli Apartheid.
WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW, "Preparing for the March for Unity" Produced by Ken O'Keefe:
Events will start at 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, 03/15/2011
...and will continue until the achievement of all goals. We will be gathering in the following places (modifications possible): Gaza: the Unknown Soldier Square Ramallah: Manara Square Tulkarm: Roundabout Gamal Abdel Nasser Jenin: complex of garages near the old Cinema Jenin Hebron: in front of the governor's office Bethlehem: Church of the Nativity Square Nablus: Martyrs Square
Slideshow by Ken O'Keefe
Jordan and Lebanon: no location yet All over the world: in front of the Palestinian embassies, in coordination with the Palestinian communities abroad.
People around the world will be waving the Palestinian flag tomorrow to show solidarity with the Palestinian "15th of March" demonstrations. This isn't the first march, but it may be the last, if the wishes of the Palestinian Youth Movement come to fruition.
In that case, March 15th, 2011 may well live in infamy as the day the people of the world stood together to end the unjust occupation of our brothers and sisters.
It is time to end the division, let us all make it so.
Publisher Bonnie King has been with Salem-News.com since August '04. Bonnie has served in a number of positions in the broadcast industry; TV Production Manager at KVWB (Las Vegas WB) and Producer/Director for the TV series "Hot Wheels in Las Vegas", TV Promotion Director for KYMA (NBC), and KFBT (Ind.), Asst. Marketing Director (SUPERSHOPPER MAGAZINE), Director/Co-Host (Coast Entertainment Show), Radio Promotion Director (KBCH/KCRF), and NIE/Circulation Sales Manager (STATESMAN JOURNAL NEWSPAPER). Bonnie has a depth of understanding that reaches further than just behind the scenes, and that thoroughness is demonstrated in the perseverance to correctly present each story with the wit and wisdom necessary to compel and captivate viewers.
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