Thousands of Palestinians rallied on Sunday during Nakba Day – which Palestinians call the “the catastrophe”.
In 1948 over 700,000 Palestinians were forcibly displaced from their homes. The Nakba refers to the systematic ethnic cleansing of one-third of the Palestinian population at the time by Zionist paramilitaries between 1947-1949 and the near-total destruction of Palestinian society.
The anniversary comes when many are angered by the killing of prominent Al Jazeera veteran journalist Shireen Abu Akleh by Israeli forces and also marks one year since the bombing of Al-Jalaa building in Gaza which hosted a number of press offices, including The Associated Press and Al-Jazeera’s bureau.
In her final report before being killed by Israeli forces, Shireen Abu Akleh visited Al Ruwwayyes, one of more than 500 villages from which Palestinians were expelled in 1948.
Among them was Abu Ibrahim, who was 11 years old the day their mosque was blown up and his family had to flee.
Palestinians “still yearn to return to their homes,” Abu Akleh said in the report. “This is the life of refugees.”
Friends and colleagues described Abu Akleh as a brave and kind reporter with an “infectious laugh” who gave voice to the struggles of Palestinians over a career spanning nearly three decades.
“Our loss is so huge,” said Nida Ibrahim, an Al Jazeera correspondent and colleague of Abu Akleh’s in the occupied West Bank. “She was kind, dedicated and devoted. She knew the story through and through and she understood the nuances. She brought a wealth of information to her reporting.”
During the funeral of Abu Akleh, Israeli police forces attacked mourners and pallbearers. Footage which was shared online shows Israeli police wielding batons and striking mourners and pall-bearers was widely condemned.
— Rushdi Abualouf (@Rushdibbc) May 13, 2022
At least 16 Palestinians have been injured after Israeli occupation forces attacked a Nakba rally taking place near al-Bireh, an occupied West Bank City located 15km from Jerusalem.
Read more at Al-Jazeera