The global community showed solidarity with the people of Gaza through peaceful demonstrations that took place on Friday and Saturday. People from different parts of the world came together to call for an end to the conflict, showing their support for the Palestinian cause in light of the escalating tensions in Rafah. The massive turnout at these protests demonstrates the widespread concern and desire for peace in the region.

The New Arab Staff

Thousands of people took to the streets around the world to protest against the war in Gaza as Israel pledges to go forward with its offensive in Rafah in southern Gaza amid concern that such action would sharply worsen the humanitarian crisis in the war-torn enclave.

A reported 250,000 people marched through London, with police arresting 12 people for alleged offences, including the refusal to remove a face mask when asked to do so.

The march went from Hyde Park to the Israeli embassy in central London.

The British capital has seen some of the biggest pro-Palestine demonstrations since the start of Israel’s bombardment of Gaza on October 7, which has so far killed at least 28,900 people, mostly civilians, according to Gaza’s health authorities.

In Madrid, thousands marched to demand an immediate ceasefire in the war.

The crowd snaked under bright sunshine through closed-off streets in the Spanish capital from Atocha train station to the central Plaza del Sol square behind a large banner that read “Freedom for Palestine”.

Six ministers from Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s cabinet took part – all five from hard-left party Sumar, his junior coalition partners, as well as Transport Minister Oscar Puente of the premier’s Socialist party.

The Swedish city of Malmo, with a sizeable Middle Eastern community, also saw a pro-Palestine march, as well as the capital, Stockholm.

In Germany, demonstrators marched in Berlin and Munich, and Italy saw marches in the cities of Turin and Verona, with some arrests reported.

Notable demonstrations also took place in Dublin, New York City, Sydney, and Seoul as part of the Global Action Day for Palestine.

Istanbul, which has also seen regular marches since October 7, saw thousands show up to the demonstration.

Across the Arab world, significant marches took place in Morocco and Yemen.

Morocco normalised ties with Israel in 2020 as part of the controversial Abraham Accords, but thousands of Moroccans have protested in the streets and signed petitions calling for the agreement to be suspended.

Recently, Rabat openly called for an end to the Israeli war on Gaza and rejected any attempts to displace the Palestinians there. But pro-Palestine activists say this falls short of addressing two key demands, which are condemning the genocide and cancelling normalisation altogether.

In the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, millions demonstrated in support of Gaza and Palestine, carrying large Palestinian and Yemeni flags. It is a common scene in Sanaa whenever there is an Israeli assault on Gaza.

Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis have launched repeated drone and missile attacks against international commercial shipping in the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandab Strait since mid-November, saying they are acting in solidarity with Palestinians.

The group says it is targeting Israeli-linked ships or vessels heading to Israel’s ports.

American and British forces have retaliated by striking Houthi sites in impoverished Yemen, citing threats to global trade. The Houthis have vowed to continue the attacks until a ceasefire is reached in Gaza. –

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