DAYS OF PALESTINE – Dozens of protesters known as ‘Friends of Palestine’ hit the streets of Manchester in the northwest of England on Saturday in solidarity with the Palestinian people, calling for justice as well as liberation of Sheikh Jarrah.
The protesters also denounced British University of Sheffield Hallam for suspending a Palestinian Ph.D. student from teaching, following a smear campaign by the Israeli lobby that was started after she spoke of her own history of Israel’s ongoing crimes against her and her people.
Shahd Abusalama, a Palestinian activist, writer and artist from Gaza, announced on her social media last week that she was suspended from a teaching position at her department following an intense online campaign by pro-Israel supporters who accused her of ‘antisemitism’.
Meanwhile, following days of protests, the high-profile activist was told on Thursday that her teaching position at Sheffield Hallam University had been reinstated.
The Manchester protesters also express their support for Sheikh Jarrah amid the Palestinian neighborhood being the scene of frequent crackdowns by Israeli police on Palestinians protesting the displacement of dozens of Palestinian families from their homes.
Since Israel seized East Jerusalem in the 1967 war, Israeli settler organizations have claimed ownership of land in Sheikh Jarrah and have filed multiple lawsuits to force Palestinians from the area.
Most of the international community considers Israeli settlement construction illegal under international law and an obstacle to the so-called two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Nearly 700,000 Israelis live in illegal settlements built since the 1967 occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds.
The UN Security Council has in several resolutions condemned the Tel Aviv regime’s settlement projects in the occupied Palestinian lands.
Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent state with East al-Quds as its capital.