Candlelight vigil marks 70th anniversary of Palestinian Nakba

Event on Tuesday, May 15 at Thunderbird Square in Abbotsford

Fraser Valley residents have an opportunity to mark the 70th anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba — “Catastrophe” — on Tuesday, May 15 with a candlelight vigil in Abbotsford.

The event takes place at 7 p.m. Thunderbird Square (32388 Veterans Way) and is sponsored by UFV Amnesty International, UFV Greens, and UFV Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights. Tea lights will be provided.

“We’re pleased to sponsor this event,” said Kapil Sharma, president of SPHR–UFV.

“At this time 70 years ago, the new state of Israel was forcibly expelling hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes in what is now Israel. Palestinians refer to it as their Nakba, or catastrophe.

“We wish to commemorate the loss and suffering and draw attention to the ongoing oppression that Palestinians endure every day.”

In late November 1947, the newly formed United Nations voted to partition the former British mandate of Palestine, giving over half to the new state of Israel and the remainder to the indigenous Palestinians.

By May 15, 1948, Zionist militias had expelled 440,000 Palestinians from their homes in the Israeli portion. Despite repeated UN resolutions, Israel refused to allow the refugees to return.

Today, Israel continues to displace Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza and deny them fundamental human and civil rights.

For more information, visit the Facebook page “UFV Palestine Student Group.”

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