Dozens attended a demonstration in Red Deer to show support to Palestine on Friday. (Contributed photo)

Dozens attended a demonstration in Red Deer to show support to Palestine on Friday. (Contributed photo)

Dozens gather in Red Deer to show support for Palestine

Palestine and Israel may have reached a ceasefire agreement last week following an 11-day clash, but a Red Deer woman says the conversation must continue.

Lara Al-hmidat, 26, organized a demonstration Friday in support of Palestine. Dozens of central Albertans attended the event in front of Red Deer City Hall.

The people of Palestine “are right now fighting ethnic cleansing,” Al-hmidat said Monday.

“It’s not religious, it’s not a just war, it’s not both sides. We’re talking about an occupation – an illegal occupation. It’s a cause of basic human rights.”

More than 250 people were killed in the 11 days of fighting, the vast majority of them Palestinians.

The fighting began May 10, when Hamas militants in Gaza fired long-range rockets toward Jerusalem. This came after days of clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli police at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound. Heavy-handed police tactics at the compound and the threatened eviction of dozens of Palestinian families by Jewish settlers had inflamed tensions.

Al-hmidat, who was born in Jordan and has been living in Red Deer since 2017, said she wants Canadians to start talking about the situation in Palestine.

“I know Canadians care about their peace of mind, but peace of mind is not something anyone is going to get unless the whole world is living in justice,” she said.

“As long as Israel’s crimes go on, we’re going to continue protesting, shedding light, educating people and raising awareness. The sooner we start talking about it, the sooner governments will take action.”

In addition to the dozens on the sidewalk participating in the demonstration, many honked their horns in support as they passed by, Al-hmidat said, adding there were a few people who voiced their disagreement with the demonstration.

“It’s our obligation to be out there and be the voices of the people whose voices are being stolen,” she said.

Al-hmidat said she believes Canada “is on the wrong side” of the conflict between Palestine and Israel.

“Canada supports Israel and Israel is committing war crimes,” she said.

“It’s exactly what happened with White people and Indigenous people here in Canada. (Israel is) trying to ethnically cleanse the people of Palestine.

“Canada apologized to the Indigenous people here for the crimes they did in the past. I don’t know why we’re supporting the crimes that are happening to Palestine. It’s like we’re making the same mistake over and over again when we can stop it.”

Al-hmidat, whose grandparents lived in Palestine until 1948, said she received approval from the City of Red Deer, Alberta Health Services and RCMP to go ahead with Friday’s demonstration.

—With files from The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Mental health support centre in central Alberta to receive funding

Shoppers Drug Mart is lending support to the Canadian Mental Health Association.… Continue reading

Downtown Red Deer was packed with people who lined the streets to watch the Westerner Days parade on Wednesday. (Photo by SUSAN ZIELINSKI/Advocate staff)
Westerner Days parade cancelled, full details on modified event coming June 28

The 2021 edition of Westerner Days will look much different than any… Continue reading

City council wants to hear from the public at a May 25 hearing about whether the temporary homeless shelter should be allowed to remain in the downtown for another year. (Advocate file photo).
City of Red Deer staff to recommend another extension to allow operations at current temporary shelter site

Following some more research city administration has received no other new locations… Continue reading

A scene from the short Western ‘Cheaters, Robbers and Outlaws,’ written and directed by Jason Steele, with support from Telus Storyhive. (Contributed image)
Red Deerians make ‘Cheaters, Robbers and Outlaws’ short Western film

Writer and director Jason Steele received a $20,000 Storyhive grant from Telus

Residents in several neighbourhoods reported little to no water pressure Tuesday night. (File photo by Advocate staff)
City hall to reopen for payments and customer service

Red Deer City Hall will reopen on June 21 for utility and… Continue reading

Harley Hay
Harley Hay: You can’t trust Mondays

Monday isn’t my favourite day. It insists on occurring right after a… Continue reading

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price stops Vegas Golden Knights' William Karlsson as he is covered by Canadiens' Joel Edmundson during first period of Game 3 of the NHL Stanley Cup semifinal Friday, June 18, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Andreson’s timely scoring, Price’s goaltending give Habs 2-1 series lead over Vegas

Canadiens 3 Golden Knights 2 (OT) (Montreal leads series 2-1) MONTREAL —… Continue reading

Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) is defended by Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) as he looks for an opening during the first half of Game 6 of an NBA basketball Eastern Conference semifinal series Friday, June 18, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Curry, Harris help 76ers stay alive, hold off Hawks 104-99

76ers 104 Hawks 99 (Series tied 3-3) ATLANTA — Seth Curry hit… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s promise of a two-dose fall is… Continue reading

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, speaks during a press conference in Ottawa, Thursday, May 13, 2021. Mendicino has announced a new policy to help settle 500 refugees and their families in a news conference today. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year: Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino

Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino announced plans to expedite applications and increase the… Continue reading

Louis Oosthuizen, of South Africa, plays his shot from the third tee during the second round of the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Friday, June 18, 2021, at Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Bland leads at Torrey and shows the US Open is truly open

SAN DIEGO — The U.S. Open prides itself on being the most… Continue reading

The Prime Minister's car waits outside the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg Tuesday, May 19, 2009. The head of the Public Health Agency of Canada is showing no sign he'll release unredacted documents about the firing of two scientists at Canada's highest security laboratory — despite the prospect of being publicly shamed in the House of Commons for his refusal to turn them over. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods
PHAC head maintains he’s bound by law not to release docs on fired scientists

OTTAWA — The head of the Public Health Agency of Canada is… Continue reading

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant in Canada

OTTAWA — The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly… Continue reading

Most Read