Palestinian Prisoners Remembered in English.
By Yousef M. Aljamal, CPDS, Gaza. On Wednesday 2nd May the Gaza
Center for Political and Development Studies staged a ceremony to award
a group of writers and activists addressing prisoners' issues. The
ceremony, sponsored by The Islamic Society-Jabalyia (ISJ) and Viva
Palestina-Malaysia, was attended by dozens of activists at the
prisoners' tent at the Square of the Unknown Solider in Gaza City.
"This event takes place in order to support Palestinian political
prisoners in their struggle for their inalienable human rights. A year
ago, CPDS announced a creative writing contest to promote prisoners
rights. We received more than 20 submissions by activists from different
countries. This competition is to encourage people to keep telling the
story of Palestinians' suffering. Today we are celebrating those
activists and encouraging other young writers who can convey the message
of those who sacrificed their happiness, families and future to defend
our collective rights as Palestinians," said Dr Mahmoud Alhirthani,
CPDS chairman. "Without the support of different bodies, this
effort would not have succeeded. Thanks to the Islamic Society in
Jabalia and thanks to Viva Palestina Malaysia, who help CPDS and provide
us with the support necessary to stand by the prisoners. This support is
enabling an Arabic opera to be subtitled in English and a number of
reports on the prisoners to be translated into English," he added.
The event, the first of its kind in Gaza, was attended by ex-prisoner
Chris Bandak, who was freed in the last swap which took place in October
2011 and deported to Gaza. In his speech, Bandak highlighted the
importance of supporting prisoners. "Palestinian prisoners expect
us to stand by them. They have nothing to fight the armed soldiers with
but their stomachs and resilience. If you fail them, you fail Palestine.
They are the symbol of our eternal struggle," he noted. Eng.
Abdul-Reheem Shihab, ISJ chairman, stressed the importance of supporting
prisoners who are subjected to humiliation in the occupation jails.
"The Society supported prisoners-related activities and will keep
doing that," he concluded. The ceremony is one in a series CPDS has
held to award young writers who write about Palestine. The center is set
to hold a course on Writing Press Releases for the Western Media to get
the word about Palestine out to the English speaking world and western
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