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Kenyans protest against Israeli attacks on Gaza

POLICE fired teargas to disperse a crowd of more than 200 people protesting in Kenya’s capital Nairobi yesterday against the Israeli bombing of the Palestinian territory of Gaza.

Several demonstrators were arrested, a Reuters witness said.

The march started after Eid prayers at a nearby mosque. Protesters waved banners with the Palestinian flag and with the words: “Kenyans stand with Palestine” and “Our freedom is incomplete without the Freedom of Palestine – Nelson Mandela”.

“I stand with my brothers and sisters in Palestine and I pray day and night that my sisters and brothers get peace,” said protestor Rayan Sheikh.

Dozens of people have been killed in Israeli air strikes on Gaza since violence escalated on Monday, and several people in Israel have been killed by Hamas rocket fire.

“Israel is the last apartheid nation in the world,” Boniface Mwangi, an anti-corruption and human rights activist, said just before teargas was thrown to disperse the marchers.

“Apartheid in South Africa would not have fallen without international pressure…our silence justifies what Israel is doing.”

Some critics of Israeli policies regarding the Palestinians, including Human Rights Watch, have accused it of a form of apartheid, the former system of white minority rule in South Africa. Israel rejects the comparison. 

In other developments:

  • Jen Psaki, the White House Press secretary said Egypt, Tunisia and other countries in the region can play a short-term role in de-escalating the ongoing conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians.
  • SA political parties and civil society have condemned Israel’s action and are planning a protest march in Cape Town. The Palestine protest march is being organized by, among others, the Muslim Judicial Council, Al Quds Foundation, National Coalition 4 Palestine (NC4P), the ANC, Good Party, Economic Freedom Fighters, SACP, ANC Youth League, NFP, Al Jamaah, Kairos Southern Africa, Palestine Solidarity Campaign and #Africa4Palestine.
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By The African Mirror