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This Tuesday, May 18th, MPPM – the Portuguese Movement for the Rights of the Palestinian People and for Peace in the Middle East – promoted, at Casa do Alentejo, in Lisbon, a Meeting to mark the 73 years of the Nakba.

Israel's brutal offensive in recent weeks against the Palestinian population in Jerusalem has made it clear that the ethnic cleansing of Palestine is an ongoing process.

On May 14, 1948, the State of Israel was self-proclaimed over the ruins of more than 500 Palestinian towns and villages, over some 15,000 Palestinian dead and over the theft of the property of the more than 750,000 Palestinians forced from their homes and land.

In 1967, Israel occupied all of historic Palestine, imposing a racist, colonial and apartheid regime on the Palestinians.

Against the perpetuation of this injustice, the Palestinian people resist, every day, in Sheik Jarrah, in Hebron or in Gaza.

In what were possibly the most attended demonstrations of solidarity with Palestine, held in Lisbon and Porto, hundreds of people responded this Monday to the call of CGTP-IN — General Confederation of the Portuguese Workers, CPPC — Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation, and MPPM — Portuguese Movement for the Rights of Palestinian People and for Peace in the Middle East, to affirm out loud that the resistance of the Palestinian people will triumph over Israeli barbarism, to the despair of its accomplices.

In Lisbon, Martim Moniz Square was completely filled with a very heterogeneous attendance, including many young people and strong representations of communities from Arab and Islamic countries.

Maria do Céu Guerra, president of MPPM, opened the public event by reciting the poem «Identity Card», by the great Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwich.

This was followed by the intervention of Gustavo Carneiro, member of the CPPC National Board.

We are witnessing scenes of barbarism in the martyred land of Palestine, of unacceptable violence, that must be stopped and that are the entire responsibility of Israel and its protectors.

Israel's bombing of the besieged population of the Gaza Strip has already caused nearly a hundred and fifty deaths – including 40 children – and close to a thousand wounded. Residential apartment towers are demolished, leaving numerous families homeless.

In Israel, Palestinians are lynched, their shops destroyed and their homes invaded by bands of Israeli extremists in pogroms broadcast live on Israeli public television. The danger of an escalation of violence is very real.

This violence is not «the responsibility of the two parties». It has undeniable proximate causes:

MPPM — Portuguese Movement for the Rights of the Palestinian People and for Peace in the Middle East — strongly condemns the violence of the Israeli army, police and settlers against Palestinians in Jerusalem and holds Israeli occupation and its supporters fully responsible for the explosion of violence

1. The acts of violence that have taken place most intensely in Jerusalem, but also in other parts of occupied Palestine, have their proximate causes in recent episodes such as the evictions in Sheikh Jarrah or the ban on access to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, but they cannot be dissociated from the effects of decades of a brutal colonial occupation.

MPPM joined the May Day parade organized by CGTP-IN — General Confederation of the Portuguese Workers, in Lisbon, between Campo Pequeno and Alameda.

We demanded a Free and Independent Palestine and Peace for the Middle East.

Palestine and the Middle East were also present in the speech of the General Secretary of CGTP-IN at the end of the parade:

“We salute the people of Palestine, occupied and humiliated by Israel under the patronage of the United States of America!
“[Palestine will win! Palestine will win!]
“We salute the peoples of Syria and the entire Middle East, a land plagued by the greed of profit and by those who show no mercy to impose their will!”

 

MPPM participated in the parade organized by the Commission for the Popular Commemorations of the 25th of April (*), which today took place at the Avenida da Liberdade, in central Lisbon.

After a year's gap due to the pandemics, Avenida da Liberdade was once again the stage for the 25th of April celebrations, albeit in a more contained dimension, due to the restrictions imposed by the sanitary measures in force.

MPPM brought to the streets the cause of the Palestinian people, a debt of gratitude that Portugal has yet to fulfill.


(*) To celebrate the date when, in 1974, a revolution led by young democratic military officers overthrew the 48-year-old fascist regime

Today we celebrate the 47th anniversary of the April Revolution*. We celebrate the end of the long fascist night and the return to the Portuguese people of their freedom and fundamental rights. We also celebrate the end of isolation and the return with dignity to the companionship of nations.

The Constitution of the Republic, enacted 45 years ago, enshrines the essential values – freedom, democracy, social justice, national independence, peace, solidarity –, the rights acquired and also the commitments made, namely in international relations.

If, with regard to the recovery of individual and collective rights, despite advances and setbacks, there has been undeniable progress, in what concerns international relations, Portugal is taking a long time to accomplish the goals of the April Revolution.

It was April's wish, enshrined in the Constitution, that Portugal should be governed by respect “for human rights, for the rights of peoples”.

To mark the Palestinian Prisoners Day, MPPM – Movement for the Rights of Palestinian People and for Peace in the Middle East – and URAP – Union of Portuguese Antifascist Resistants – , with the support of the Aljube Museum (*), promoted, on Tuesday, 20 April, a solidarity session with the Palestinian prisoners and administrative detainees in Israeli jails.

The session was opened by Rita Rato, director of the Aljube Museum, who highlighted the fact that this initiative was taking place where one of the most sinister jails of Portuguese fascism was once located.

Carlos Almeida, speaking on behalf of MPPM, placed the issue of Palestinian prisoners in the more general context of the Israeli occupation, emphasizing that it is an entire people who have their freedom restricted.

The Platform for Peace and Disarmament, of which the MPPM is a member, held a session dedicated to Palestine in Coimbra, on Thursday, April 8, as part of the Youth Day celebrations.

The session began with the screening of the documentary How Palestine became colonized followed by a debate. Ana Biscaia, graphic designer, who has illustrated several books on Palestine, spoke on behalf of MPPM.

Recorded testimonies of five young Palestinians and two Portuguese women who were in Palestine (Ana Carvalho, journalist, and Joana Villaverde, plastic artist) were also shown.

The session, which took place at Espaço Liquidâmbar, was attended by a young and participating audience. Unfortunately, the sanitary measures in place did not allow for a larger one.

A representation of MPPM was received yesterday in the Assembly of the Republic [Parliament] by its vice president, MP Fernando Negrão, on behalf of the president.

MPPM had sent requests for an audience to the Prime Minister and the President of the Assembly of the Republic to present the Appeal addressed to the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union to recognize the State of Palestine and to take an action with the other Member States to act in this same direction.

The delegation was composed by Carlos Almeida, vice president of MPPM, and Deolinda Machado, trade union and LOC (Catholic Workers League) leader, a subscriber to the Appeal.

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