Swedish activist Benjamin Ladraa is making his way towards the border of the Czech Republic three months after he started his walk to Palestine to raise awareness of the occupation.
Ladraa has met many people during his journey, and stayed with a Palestinian and Syrian couple for a few days while resting in Germany.
Now walking through Dresden in East Germany, Ladraa confesses he is feeling slightly cautious, given most of the city voted for Germany’s right wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in the elections last month.
“You really learn a lot when you’re out travelling like this. I’ve heard about this city before but only the name. Apparently this is the Nazi capital of Germany.”
“It feels very good to leave this city; it’s not very comfortable carrying this huge flag around,” he says, pointing to the large Palestinian flag he has attached to his trolley.
He jokes that any anti-fascists who wanted to protest against right-wing groups should go to the city in order to challenge their views on immigrants and Muslims.
However, he emphasises that his stay in the city has been nice overall.
“But I also met some good people here, not to blame Dresden for anything, there are good people as well and lovely food.”
He notes that he broke his tent recently, but says that he managed to sew it together and buy a pole to keep it up. Whilst occasionally staying with people he meets along the way, Ladraa has otherwise been sleeping in the tent on the roadside before setting off again.
“If you are resourceful you will make it and I try to be as resourceful as I can. I really have no choice,” he laughs.
Ladraa hopes to arrive in Prague next week, before crossing through the rest of the Czech Republic and into Austria. He has given himself a year to make the journey to Palestine, which he will be completing entirely by foot.
Ladraa chose to make the journey to mark the 100-year anniversary of the Balfour Declaration which provided international legitimacy for the Zionist project which led to the subsequent creation of the State of Israel, and the displacement of nearly one million Palestinians in 1948.