In Brisbane, more than 500 people gathered at the city centre, draped in Palestinian flags and colours, passionately chanting “Free Gaza” and “End the siege.”
Event speakers voiced strong condemnation for the Israeli government’s actions that have led to the deaths of thousands of Palestinians. Additionally, they criticized the Australian government’s perceived lack of support.
Ghena Bader, a fourteen-year-old born in Gaza with relatives still living there, expressed deep concerns for their safety. She emphasized the urgency of the situation, saying, “You’re calling them now, but next time you call, they might be dead.” Bader, who has experienced multiple wars, expressed sorrow for the children who are forced to live in dire conditions without basic necessities like food, water, or electricity.
In Australia’s largest city, Sydney, thousands of people received last-minute approval for a pro-Palestinian march. This decision followed concerns about anti-Jewish slogans chanted at a previous rally.
The demonstrators in Sydney chanted “Palestine will never die” and proudly waved Palestinian flags. The event was closely monitored by the police, including officers on horseback and a police helicopter circling overhead. However, the march remained peaceful, with no reported arrests.
Protesters globally have been demanding an end to Israel’s intense air and artillery strikes in Gaza, which have resulted in the loss of thousands of lives. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to continue the military’s operations in Gaza, signalling no immediate pause in the conflict.
The rallies in Brisbane and Sydney, as well as protests worldwide, represent a show of solidarity with the Palestinian people and a call for an end to the violence and suffering in the region.