Palestinians mark “catastrophe” of Israel’s creation

Monday, May 16, 2005 | 
Palestinians have marked what they call the "Nakba," or "catastrophe" of Israel's creation 57 years ago. In an ignominious copy of Israeli observances on Holocaust Remembrance Day and Memorial Day, sirens sounded in Judea, Samaria and Gaza and Palestinians observed two minutes of silence in solidarity with the 700,000 people who lost their homes and became refugees. They carried signs demanding that they be allowed to their former homes in Israel. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas described the creation of Israel as a “crime,” and said there will be no peace until Jerusalem becomes the capital of a Palestinian state. Israel said the Nakba observances dash the hopes for peace. “It shows a state of mind still disposed to looking at the state of Israel as an obstacle that must be removed, rather than a reality that must be reconciled with," said Deputy Premier Ehud Olmert.

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