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Celebrities in solidarity with Sheikh Jarrah

Palestinian-American supermodel Bella Hadid
Palestinian-American supermodel Bella Hadid

Social media users from around the world are sharing videos of Israeli soldiers and settlers attacking Palestinian families facing forcible evictions in the Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah, in which their families have lived for generations.

While many have criticised the silence of celebrities and influencers on the crisis against Palestinians, the handful of celebrities drawing attention to the escalating violence were noted for lending their voices and platform to support the Palestinian cause.

Using the hashtag #SaveSheikhJarrah, Palestinian-American supermodel Bella Hadid took to Instagram to protest the injustice. She said she couldn't believe the "hate in the heart of people" against the people of occupied Palestine.

In a series of Instagram stories, Bella reposted and shared content that explained the recent series of events in detail, which took place in Sheikh Jarrah throughout the past few days.

She also reposted an Instagram story that her older sister, Alana Hadid, shared on her own Instagram account, including a tearful shot of the mother-of-two expressing her own frustrations at the on-going displacement and violence against Palestinians, encouraging others to keep sharing content in order to raise awareness.

She wrote: "I feel the pain of my ancestors. I cry for them. I cry for my Palestinian brothers and sisters, there now, feeling unsafe and scared. This needs to stop, there is NO room for this in 2021! My sister Alana wrote perfectly how I feel today. We are proud to be Palestinian and we stand with Palestine."

Meanwhile, her father, Palestinian-born Mohammed Hadid was slammed for taking a neutral approach in response to the attacks during his Instagram live, in which he remarked that both sides need to reconcile and establish peace.

He had also posted a selfie with a caption that originally stated he was "at peace … basking in the dry desert sun" until his followers noted the insensitivity of his words at this critical time and urged him to raise awareness of the brutality of the occupation of Jerusalem.

Instagram user @JenisShadid wrote: "I saw your live yesterday talking about how Palestinians should make peace with the settlers while sitting in your Mercedes with no one trying to kick you out of your own house."

Another added: "We can't be at peace while Jerusalem is still bleeding."

Following the pressure, the American real estate mogul changed his caption to "sending love and prayers to my Palestinian brothers and sisters. #savesheikhjarrah."

READ: Israel can't impose its own laws to evict Palestinians, UN rights group says

The latest round of forced evictions of Palestinian families from Sheikh Jarrah is led by a right-wing settler group which claims to have title deeds for the homes which, in reality, belong to the Palestinians. Under international law, Israel is an occupying power and its courts have no jurisdiction in the territory it occupies.

Other global stars who joined in expressing their fury and empathy of the violations against the people of Palestine include former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters, British artist Dua Lipa and fashion Hijabi model Halima Aden and Palestinian-American fashion model Fai Kahdra.

With her 68.8 million followers, Dua Lipa highlighted stories of families who are in danger of being evicted and shared another post which included a breakdown of events under the headline 'What Is Happening In Sheikh Jarrah?'.

Earning the respect of the many supporters of Palestine, she described the evictions as "ethnic cleansing" while urging the world to "intervene and put a stop to this."

Roger slammed Israel as "an apartheid state" over the forced evictions of Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah, which he said is "breaking his heart".

He also called out US President Joe Biden over his support for Israel as he questioned, "You support them in this genocidal removal of people from their homes?"

"How would you like it, Joe Biden? You're sitting at home, that's where your family lived for hundreds of years. Then some … comes along and goes, 'That's ours. I'm a settler, I'm going to take your house from you.'"

A court hearing which would finally rule on the evictions of the Palestinian families was scheduled for today, but it has now been further postponed for another 30 days and the forced evictions have been delayed.

READ: Palestine will not be the same after another Aqsa Intifada 

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