GAZA CITY, Gaza – Thousands of Palestinians gathered in cities across Gaza and in the West Bank to protest the peace conference currently underway in Annapolis. At the largest rally, in Gaza City, leaders of Hamas spoke amongst chants of “Death to Israel” and “Death to America”. Hamas, who is labeled as a terrorist organization by the US, was not invited to the conference, and has been protesting against the conference for several days. At the Gaza City demonstration, Haniya, the former Palestinian Prime Minister, stated that the “conference cannot change the reality of history and geography,” and that any conference that denies this reality is “doomed to failure.”
In the West Bank, where the Palestinian Authority (PA) banned any demonstration against the conference, smaller rallies took place in major cities, such as Ramallah, Hebron, and Nablus. At these demonstrations, PA policemen dispersed demonstrators by firing live ammunition in the air, using tear gas, and by hitting individuals with batons. At the largest West Bank demonstration in Hebron, one demonstrator was shot in the chest and was killed. Medics report that several individuals sustained serious to minor injuries. The Palestinian police have refused to comment.
Demonstrations against the Annapolis conference also occurred in other countries, such as Jordan and Israel.
For more information, please see:
Al Jazeera – Hamas says “Annapolis Doomed” – 27 November 2007
BBC – Gaza rally against Mid-East talks – 27 November 2007
International Herald Tribune – Israeli, Palestinians hard-liners demonstrate against US-sponsored Mideast conference – 27 November 2007
Reuters – Jordanians stage anti-Annapolis protest – 27 November 2007
Reuters – One killed in Palestinian clashes over Annapolis – 27 November 2007
Telegraph – Annapolis Middle East summit : Q&A – 27 November 2007