Trinity Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign (BDS) and the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) are to host a protest in support of Palestine this afternoon. The protest is due to take place outside the Israeli embassy in Dublin City Centre at 4pm today.
Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) will also be in attendance, and are encouraging students to join the protest. The Trinity BDS campaign aims to “promote the aims of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement on campus.” In March 2018, students voted in favour of a BDS mandate for TCDSU, with the motion passing by 64.5%.
In a press release last night, Trinity BDS and the IPSC explained that groups in Palestine have called for protests to be held this afternoon “to coincide with their own actions in the West Bank and Gaza.” “Palestinians across Historic Palestine are observing tomorrow a General Strike to protest Israel’s massacres in Gaza and settler-colonial and apartheid repression and ethnic cleansing against Palestinian communities everywhere.” The statement continued “a call has gone out from Sheikh Jarrah, from Palestinians inside the Apartheid State of Israel, and from the occupied West Bank for solidarity actions across the globe.”
Trinity BDS and the IPSC are encouraging attendees at the protest to adhere to social distancing guidelines and to wear a mask. Last Saturday, TCDSU and Trinity BDS attended a rally in support of Palestine in Dublin City Centre. The rally took place on Nakba Day, which, falling on 15 May each year, is a day for Palestinians to mark Nakba, meaning “the catastrophe,” referring to their expulsion from the region. The IPSC was forced to pull out of this rally after they were contacted by Gardaí and informed that a protest of over 15 people could result in prosecution of the organisers, due to Covid-19 public health measures. The ISPC said that this was “hugely disappointing and frustrating” but that they “really were left with no other option.” Despite this, several thousand people attended the rally in solidarity with Palestine.
Violence in the region has escalated over the past week, with at least 212 Palestinians killed by Israeli air strikes. At least 10 Israelis have been killed by retaliation from Hamas who control the Gaza strip. Despite pleas from world leaders for a ceasefire, heavy Israeli strikes have continued, with 110 rockets and bombs being fired at Palestinians yesterday morning alone. The strikes have destroyed at least one refugee camp, and a multimedia headquarters.