Palestinian citizens expelled from the occupied Palestinian city of Bethlehem 12 years ago held a press conference in front of the house of the Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas in the Gaza Strip.
Spokesman of the deportees, Fahmi Kanan, blamed Abbas for the length of time they spent in Gaza without returning to their home city as agreed between the PA and the Israeli occupation.
The agreement reached between the PA and the Israeli occupation meant that they should have returned two years after the time they were expelled.
Kanan addressed Abbas saying: “We chose to stand before your house in order to send you a message that our homesickness towards this city is bigger than your homesickness to this house. Add to that, we are away from our families and relatives of our original homes.”
Asking Abbas to take serious measures on this issue, Kanan called upon him to contact the EU, the UN and the international community. Kanan reiterated that expelling them is a violation to international humanitarian law and to the Geneva Conventions.
He called upon Abbas to work with international institutions on applying the agreed upon conditions.
It is worth mentioning that, in addition to the 26 deportees, their family members travelled to Gaza to live with them.
Photographed by Mohammed Asad