Washington protestors march in honour of Palestinians killed by Israel
On a cold and windy February evening, more than a hundred people gathered at Union Station in Washington, DC to honour Palestinians who have recently lost their lives amid escalated violence by the Israeli military.
The demonstration, called Glory to Our Martyrs in Jenin, with organisers and participants from more than five Palestinian and allied groups, started at Union Station, where they read the names of 35 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces and settlers in January.
They also called for the release of Palestinian prisoner Ahmed Manasra, who was convicted as a child for being with his cousin who allegedly stabbed Israeli settlers.
The protesters ended their march in front of the office of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee downtown.
"We recognise AIPAC as one of central reasons the US maintains a blank check policy toward Israel," Zaid Khatib, a member of the Palestinian Youth Movement, told The New Arab, referring to one of the largest and most influential lobby groups related to Israel.
The demonstration comes at a time of increased crackdowns by the Israeli military, including high numbers of civilian killings, home demolitions, evictions and and arrests.
The new Israeli government, some of whose members' stated policies have indicated they will disenfranchise marginalised groups, has already made it more difficult for Palestinians to demonstrate, including an order to remove Palestinian flags from flying in public places.
On Friday, demonstrators were waving Palestinian flags, as they marched through the streets of Washington, stopping traffic and bringing attention to their voices.
"We want to show how much we value Jenin and its people," Jinan Chehade, a student at Georgetown Law School, told The New Arab, referring to the 2002 Battle of Jenin. "Jenin is the soul of the Palestinian resistance. Resistance has grown and thrived 21 years later."