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Peace camp in Stroud marks anniversary of Nakba Day

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Early this morning campaigners set up a peace camp at Wallbridge, Stroud, to mark the anniversary of Nakba Day, when in 1948 around 750,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled from their homes during the conflict that established the State of Israel.

“Well, today is Nakba Day, May 15th, the 76th anniversary of the forcing of Palestinians off their land in 1948,” said David Whitfield of Stroud Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

At 5.30am tents were assembled on the area opposite the Ecotricity building, and signs and placards tied to signs on the double mini roundabout at Merrywalks, with campaigners standing next to them.

“What we’re seeing in Gaza are now the sons and daughters of what happened 76 years ago. It’s a terrible, terrible tragedy,” said Mr Whitfield.

Nakba Day protest 3 | Peace camp in Stroud marks anniversary of Nakba Day
Jane Augsburger on the roundabout at Merrywalks. Pic: Matt Bigwood.

“More bombs have been dropped on Gaza in the last seven months than the US dropped on Vietnam during the entire Vietnam War – people just don’t realise. They’ve been repeatedly attacked, and we have to try and do something to stop it – I don’t know what you do other than march and stage things like this.

“It challenges people to think about what’s going on. We try to tell people what’s going on and I think people are horrified by it. We have a General Election coming up. Hopefully it shows in the ballot box.

Nakba Day protest 2 | Peace camp in Stroud marks anniversary of Nakba Day
Protestors in Merrywalks.

“You’ve got hundreds and thousands of cars passing through this junction and it’s a chance to engage. Some people are pleased to see you. A few people give you ‘the finger’ – that’s democracy.”

Later today protestors will be at Waitrose in Stroud, urging shoppers not to buy Israeli produce. Plans are also in place for a family-friendly ‘Picnic for Palestine’ on Saturday with music, food and dance.

Nakba Day protest 5 | Peace camp in Stroud marks anniversary of Nakba Day

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