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Women’s Stuggle for Peace – Message from Palestinian Comrade

On Saturday, March 9, communist and progressive women from several countries in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and Africa participated in the celebration of International Women’s Day, organized by the Coordinating Committee of Communist Parties’ organisations in Britain. The ceremony was opened with greetings from the representative of the National Assembly of Women. The representative of the Palestinian Communist Party was the first speaker of the meeting, who briefly explained the disastrous situation in Gaza and the struggle of Palestinian people and women against the apartheid regime of Israel.

The participants responded with great enthusiasm to the speeches of women from Bangladesh, Sudan, Iran, Iraq, and Spain. The speakers expressed solidarity with the Palestinian people and called for a ceasefire, discussed the challenges facing women in their country and around the world, and emphasized their common struggle for equality, peace, and socialism.

The cultural section of the event saw the performance of piano pieces by an Iranian pianist alongside a slide show that she dedicated to the women of Palestine, the playing of Oud by an Iraqi comrade, dance by Bangladeshi children and Bangladeshi women’s group, and the recitation of progressive poems by the comrade from the CP of Spain.  The event ended with an international buffet.

The following is the text of the representative of the Communist Party of Palestine.

Thank you for inviting me to participate at this remarkable event today marking the International Women’s Day. I would like to express firm support for all the Palestinian women that are resisting the occupation under Israeli attack right now.

According to the Palestinian Health Authority’s latest report, since the 7th October, more than 31,500 people have been killed in Gaza, 70% of them being women and children. 20 of these children have died from hunger.

Nearly 72,000 have been injured and we can’t forget about the unknown number of people currently missing under the rubble.

The latest figures from the Palestinians Ministry of Health in the occupied West Bank also show that more than 417 people including 108 children have been killed with more than 4,600 injured.

I would like to ask you all to join me in a minute’s silence for all the souls we’ve lost.

A brief history about Palestinian women’s activities before and after Nakba

Palestinian women were engaged in revolutionary action against British colonisation and the Zionist movement in Palestine since early 20th century. During the 1929 Alburaq revolution, the British killed and imprisoned many Palestinians. This encouraged women to establish the first women’s conference in Jerusalem to protect and fight against the occupation.

Women were also physically involved with the 1936 revolution against British and Zionist troops by providing food and weapons to resistance fighters. Fatma Ghazal was the first woman killed from my village because of this.

Palestinian women then took their movement further than their homeland. They participated in the Arab women’s union conference in 1938. The women’s union conference in Cairo in 1944 and then brought it home with the 1945 Arab women’s conference being held in Jerusalem.

In 1947 they also established several charities and social organisations to support women and their families. In 1948, Palestinian women became very involved in supporting and settling those who became homeless and providing education and healthcare. They were at the forefront of the establishment to the Red Crescent committee to support political prisoners and their families.

There was a rise in the creation of political organisations and women played an integral role. They saw it as their duty. Rabiha Theyab was one of these people. She was first arrested in 1968 when she was just 13 years old.

Resisting the occupation and taking part in political activities became a normal part of Palestinian day to day life. During the first intifada, Palestinian women stood side by side by their Palestinian brothers. They organised and marched in support of the freedom fighters. Helped them escape the occupation soldiers, supported prisoners’ families, made the Palestinian flag (which was banned) and so much more. I was one of these women.

In the face of adversity, they still prosper and resist. They have done so for 76 years.

They are undergoing one of the hardest periods of their lives right now. Palestinians are still being killed, starved, displaced, and experiencing indescribable suffering. Gaza’s women are struggling to survive the genocide that is currently happening. They’ve lost their homes, their families, and their livelihoods. The Israeli regime has demolished churches, mosques, schools, hospitals, homes and even graveyards. They destroyed them and left the dead to rot on the streets. The ones lucky enough to be alive are struggling to find food.

Even after the whole world witnessed the Flour Massacre, there is still no end. The European and US governments are not only silent, but they are also complicit.

The blockade of Gaza strip is still being enforced.

Palestinians are still being detained, arrested, tortured, and degraded. Palestinian refugee camps are still being targeted by Israeli raids. The states and Europe are still arming Israel and defunding UNRWA.

There is no woman in Palestine that is not a victim of the longest military occupation in history.

There needs to be a permanent ceasefire, an end to the apartheid occupation, and establishment of free, viable and sovereign Palestinian state.

To all solidarity movements, for the sake of Palestine and particularly for Palestinian women, I urge you all to raise your voice against what is taking place in the occupied Palestine.

To put pressure on governments to stop these crimes against humanity, to end apartheid and stop the genocide in Gaza and the West bank.

We will continue fighting for peace and justice for Palestinian women and for an independent state of Palestine.

Thank you all

Peace and justice for women

Peace and justice for Palestinian women

Pease and justice for ALL

Freee Free Palestine