Protesters hold Palestinian flags and placards and shout slogans during a protest to support the Palestinian people in Colombo, Sri Lanka, 18 October 2023. EFE/EPA/CHAMILA KARUNARATHNE

People in Sri Lanka take to the streets in solidarity with Palestine

Colombo, Oct 18 (EFE).- Hundreds of people took to the streets of Colombo on Wednesday in support of Palestine after the bombing of the Al Ahli hospital in the Gaza Strip that has reportedly left hundreds dead, although Israel has denied any responsibility for the attack.

Demonstrators gathered in front of the Palestinian embassy in Colombo and concluded the march at the Office of the UN Representative, carrying signs and chanting slogans in favor of Palestinian freedom.

“Firstly, we condemn the attack on innocent and unarmed Israelis. However, this issue dates back for many years,” Eranga Gunasekara of the Socialist Youth Union (SYU) that co-organized the protest told EFE.

“The United States is using this issue to extend its power in the Middle East,” Gunasekara added.

Groups such as Sri Lanka Journalists for Global Justice, also present at the march, delivered a letter to the head of the UN mission in the island country calling for a ceasefire in Palestine.

The group, in its petition, also called for “the full implementation of all UN resolutions on the Palestinian issue.”

“Israel’s eviction order to more than a million Gaza Palestinians is ethnic cleansing a second Nakba (catastrophe) – in direct violation of international legal protocols that define ‘War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity’,” the letter added.

The march took place a day after the bombing of a hospital in Gaza, which regional authorities and Arab nations attribute to Israel.

Israeli security forces, on the other hand, claim the building was not destroyed, and the incident involved a smaller explosion in the adjacent parking lot caused by a failed rocket launched by the Gazan militant group Islamic Jihad.

The Gaza Strip, home to more than two million people, has been completely blockaded since October 7 in retaliation for the attack carried out by the armed wing of the Islamist group Hamas on Israeli targets on the same day.

Israel and Hamas entered their twelfth day of war on Wednesday, which has left at least 3,000 dead and 12,500 wounded in the Gaza Strip and more than 1,400 dead and more than 4,200 wounded in Israel. EFE