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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

Palestine: the cause we must not forget -- Scenes from the Havana solidarity march

The solution to the Palestinian cause is not displacement or the transfer of an entire people to other regions, rather its only solution is to live in dignity and security in an independent Palestinian state.

By Katherin Hormigó Rubio, translated from the Spanish

"The cause of the Palestinian people is also the cause of the Arab people, the Islamic people and all the free peoples of the world," Motte Almashar, a third-year student at Havana's Faculty of Medical Sciences, said in emotional words today (March 2).

Raising our voices for the Palestinian people and demanding an end to Israeli attacks on this comradely Arab nation is more important today than ever as the Israeli government threatens to attack more than half a million people crammed into Rafah.

Since the beginning of the current cycle of violence on October 7, more than 29,000 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip, mainly women and children, and another 70,000 have been injured.

Under the banner of solidarity and respect for international law, the people of Havana gathered at the Anti-Imperialist Tribune – a symbolic site of the capital and witness to numerous mobilizations for the Revolution, against the aggressions that imperialism has committed against our people and a place of struggle and defense of the just causes of the world – to reject the genocide that the Palestinian people are experiencing in what is now the largest open air prison in the world.

Life stories such as that of Motte Almashar, a third-year student at the Faculty of Medical Sciences, and other Palestinians who are now studying medicine in Cuba, far from their families, reached the hearts of every Cuban who was in the anti-imperialist square this morning.

"It's been more than four months, days and nights with the phone in hand watching the news with the fear of losing someone else from our families and friends, also trying to call them and hear a voice that lowers or calms the worry a little. I cry for you mother, I cry for the neighbor who lost his whole family," said an emotional Motte Almashar.

He pointed out that "75 years later, the lifetime of the Palestinian cause, let us unite in one voice for the defense of the just causes of the world and for peace. Anyone who thinks that the Palestinian people will abandon the defence of their rights is mistaken and does not understand the nature of our people, who stand firm in the defence of their land, even though that land is under occupation."

The solution to the Palestinian question is not displacement or the transfer of an entire people to other regions, rather its only solution is to live in dignity and security in an independent Palestinian state.

Almashar took advantage of the occasion to raise his voice on behalf of his people, ask them not to stop the struggle and to thank the Cuban people, their government and the president, Miguel Díaz-Canel, for providing support to the Palestinian cause.

He said that when we watch the news we must think of every Palestinian child who dies as a result of a war that they do not understand, who does not know what is happening and when they should be singing, growing, laughing and preparing for life, death comes from a bombing, from a wound that cannot be healed as there is no medicine or from hunger because there is no food.

For young Cubans, it also means a lot to support the Palestinian cause. Such is the case of Iván Ernesto Barrero López, who reaffirmed that in the first place it is a question of human sensitivity and justice. One cannot stand aloof from the barbarism and genocide that is happening in Palestine, not only in Gaza but also in the West Bank, he said.

Hamlet Álvarez, a first-year philosophy student at the University of Havana, did not miss the opportunity to express his solidarity with the Palestinian people, especially with young people like him, who today are under constant bombardment by Israel.

"It is very important, I believe that the humanist and internationalist feeling that the Cuban Revolution has instilled in each young person helps us to think about what is happening to the Palestinian people and the thousands of children and young people who are constantly dying. From this place, hundreds of young Cubans rise up to ask for an end to the genocide against the people of Palestine, which means defending the rights of the entirety of all humanity, as José Martí taught us," said Álvarez

The event was attended by the First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Party and President of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez; members of the Politburo Manuel Marrero Cruz, Prime Minister, and Roberto Morales Ojeda, Secretary of Organization of the Central Committee of the Communist Party; the Vice-President of the Republic of Cuba, Salvador Valdés Mesa, also accompanied by the Ambassador of Palestine to Cuba, Akram Samhan.

This piece was translated from the Spanish and shared via License CC-BY-NC


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