The Palestinian Cultural Club organized an event in commemoration of the Nakba Day on May 16 at the upper gate.
The Nakba day, May 15 1948, was the day foreign troops began a process of ethnic cleansing of all Palestinians to enter and establish a Jewish state on Palestinian territory.
“After 64 years of being refugees, the Palestinian diaspora are still waiting for the day in which they will return to Palestine,” Abu Fakher, president of the Palestinian Cultural Club, said.
Peaceful demonstrations were organized on the Nakba Day last year in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and a host of Western countries.
Having committed a massacre in a murderous attack against the Gaza Freedom Flotilla the previous year – an atrocity that resulted in the death of at least nine and the injury of tens of activists – Israeli troops killed thirteen demonstrators on its borders during last year’s demonstrations.
Abu Fakher said that these incidents have sent a message of determination by Palestinians that they are still intent on hanging on to their land.
“The incidents that took place on 15 May 2011 in Maroun El-Ras and Majdal Shams showed that Palestinians started to implement the resolution 194, the right of return of Palestinian refugees,” Abu Fakher said.
“The message was sent to the whole world confirming the right of return, and stressing that no one can kill the spirit of struggle among Palestinians, and no one can move us aside from following the national path which our martyrs died for,” he added.
More than 10,000 Palestinians are detained in Israeli prisons, thousands of whom were not even subjected to trial before their imprisonment. More than 1,600 prisoners endured a 75-day hunger strike which they had started in mid-April.
“The Palestinian prisoners are the true representatives of the Palestinians because they are united and against division and because they fight the Israeli soldiers in their daily resistance, and they refuse to make compromises with them,” Abu Fakher said.
“This was evident this year through the victory that these prisoners had through their hunger strike for 75 days. The message of the prisoners is national unity and the continuation of struggle,” he added.
An exhibition of photos and articles showed the daily struggle by Palestinians, the Nakba Day and the different refugee camps in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan. The exhibition highlighted the timeline of the Palestinian history with articles from Assafir newspaper from the 1970s and 1980s.
“There will be no peace before we get rid of the Zionist state, and no peace before the return of all Palestinian refugees to their country. We will keep on resisting in different forms and the right of return will remain alive and will be transmitted from one generation to another,” Abu Fakher said.
In front of Sage Hall, the organizers planted an olive tree, the “Tree of Return, planted in the memory of the occupation of Palestine” dressed with a Kufiyya which stood next to the Palestinian flag.
The event was organized by the Palestinian Cultural Club in cooperation with the Human Rights Club at LAU.