RAMALLAH: Palestinians yesterday marked the anniversary of their uprooting almost seven decades ago with sirens and low-key marches. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were driven out in the Mideast war over Israel’s 1948 creation. The refugees and their descendants now number several million and most still live in the region.
Sirens wailed for 68 seconds yesterday in the West Bank to mark the passing of 68 years since what Palestinians call their “nakba” or catastrophe. Cars stopped and pedestrians stood still in the cities of Ramallah and Bethlehem during the commemoration. Marchers used keys and other props to symbolize their demand to return to what is now Israel. Israel says it will never accept a “right of return,” arguing it would threaten the state by diluting its Jewish majority. – AP