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Somalis rally in solidarity with Palestinians in Mogadishu

October 20, 2023 at 2:47 pm

Protesters participate during the Pro-Palestinian demonstration in Mogadishu, Somalia on October 19, 2023. [Abuukar Mohamed Muhidin – Anadolu Agency]

People in the Somali capital of Mogadishu took to the streets on Friday to protest Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip and to show solidarity with Palestinians, Anadolu Agency reports.

Protesters, including religious figures, youth and women, chanted anti-Israeli and pro-Palestinian slogans.

Some of them were also seen carrying Palestinian flags and placards with slogans such as “Stop the war crime”, “Free, Free Palestine” and “We demand an end to the genocide in Gaza, Palestine”.

They demanded an end to Israel’s brutal bombing campaign in Gaza.

Abshir Ahmed, a university student who took part in the rally, told Anadolu that he came to the protest “to show the world that the Palestinian issue is the issue of Somalia, and their suffering is our suffering.”

Asma Mohamed, a resident of Mogadishu’s Hamarwayne district, told Anadolu that the world needs to wake up and stop Israeli bombings on civilians in Gaza, as well as the brutal occupation of Palestinian land.

The atrocities, war crimes against humanity have been committed against our brothers and sisters in Palestine by Israeli oppressors before cameras of international media, which we have seen them

she said.

On Wednesday, Somalia joined the rest of the world in condemning an airstrike on the Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital in Gaza, calling it a “war crime”.

In a statement, the Somali Foreign Ministry condemned the bombing of the hospital, which killed over 470 people, including women and children, and injured more than 340 others.

“The occupying Israeli army bears responsibility,” the Ministry said.

The conflict in Gaza, under Israeli bombardment and blockade since 7 October, began when Hamas initiated Operation Al-Aqsa Flood, a multi-pronged surprise attack that included a barrage of rocket launches and infiltrations into Israel by land, sea and air. It said the incursion was in retaliation for the storming of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and growing violence by Israeli settlers.

The Israeli military then launched Operation Swords of Iron against Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip.

Gaza is experiencing a dire humanitarian crisis, with no electricity, while water, food, fuel and medical supplies are running out.

UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, has called for an “immediate humanitarian cease-fire” to ease the “epic human suffering.”

At least 4,137 Palestinians, including 1,524 children and 1,000 women have been killed in Israeli attacks on Gaza, while the figure stands at more than 1,400 people in Israel.

READ: Israel’s seeks emergency law to silence media coverage of Gaza war