Palestinian kindergarten children in the Gaza Strip have taken to the streets holding empty pans, plates and spoons to voice support for their counterparts in the besieged Yarmouk camp for Palestinian refugees in Syria.
Organisers of the protest pointed out that: “Only the residents in the Gaza Strip can really feel the suffering of the besieged Palestinian refugees in the Yarmouk camp. The Palestinians in Gaza have been under siege since 2006, so they understand first-hand what the siege is.”
During the protest, the children moved towards the headquarters of the International Red Cross in Gaza. They called for international human rights organisations around the world, including the Red Cross, to urgently work towards lifting the siege of the Yarmouk refugee camp.
Sources inside the camp are reporting that 48 Palestinians, including children and the elderly, have now starved to death as a result of the siege.
Television reports have shown refugees collecting grass from the sides of streets and leaves from trees in order to make some kind of meals.
On Monday, a refugee appeared on Al-Jazeera swearing that the [refugees] are even eating the meat of cats and dogs in order to survive.
The Yarmouk refugee camp was considered the largest compound for Palestinian refugees before the start of the Syrian uprising in 2011. More than 160,000 Palestinian refugees had lived there.
However, for the last 180 days, the camp has been under a strict siege enforced by Syrian regime forces and other supporting militias. As a result, most refugees have left; however, there are still 20,000 refugees trapped inside, many of whom are now suffering from starvation.
MEMO Photographer: Mohammed Asad