On April 21, local organizations led an emergency rally at the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles. The event came together because of the escalation in the repression of Palestinians. Speakers told the audience about these recent atrocities, including the deadly ambush of a caravan of Palestinians headed to a refugee camp in Jenin, and the horrific attack on the Al-Aqsa Mosque, a national symbol to Palestinians and one of the holiest sites of the Islam.
The event was brought together by community organizations like the Palestinian Youth Movement, Students for Justice in Palestine-UCLA, Al-Awda – the Palestinian Right to Return Coalition, U.S. Palestinian Community Network, Palestinian American Women’s Association, ANSWER LA, and Yalla Indivisible.
Firyal, an organizer with the PYM and SJP-UCLA, called for an end to the violence carried out by the Zionist Occupation forces, and said, “We are here to honor the defenders of Al-Aqsa. It will never fall!” Firyal added, “Martyrs are the heart and soul of Palestine as we forge ahead!“
The crowd and organizations present were made up mostly of Palestinian youth. The youth filled the crowd with energy by leading chants and waving flags and agitational posters. Unsurprisingly, the Zionist Consulate was yellow-taped and guarded by LAPD officers.
A small handful of counter-protesters stood beside the police on the steps of the entrance to the building. Their attempts to be provocative and disruptive were sidelined by the deafening chants of young defenders of Palestine who chanted, “From the River to the Sea, Palestine Will be Free!” and “Long live the Intifada, Intifada Revolution!”
Organizers stressed that the U.S. has as much Palestinian blood on its hands as does Israel, and that everyone living in the U.S. must demand an end to all aid provided to the apartheid state.
Organizations within the coalition are holding rallies, forums and marches throughout Southern California to continue to spread awareness about the U.S. government’s role in propping up Israel’s apartheid state, and to bring more fighters into the struggle to free Palestine.