Thousands raised in Palestinian Sydney solidarity events
Throughout June there was an outpouring of support for Union Aid Abroad APHEDA’s staff and partner organisations in Palestine, and communities across Australia dug deep to show their solidarity in a time of great need.
This was particularly true in Sydney, with multiple community fundraising events held, attracting hundreds of participants, and raising tens-of-thousands of dollars.
More than 100 people gathered at Himalaya Restaurant in Granville
The first of the events was a gathering of some of Western Sydney’s Pakistani-Australian community at Himalaya Restaurant in Granville. Coordinated by NSW MP Shaoquett Moselmane, and former President of the Pakistan Australia Association Shahid Iqbal, about 100 people gathered to support Palestinians, and to meet cricketing superstar Waqar Younis.
With auction items generously donated from photographers, artists, business owners, and Waqar Younis himself, about $50,000 was pledged and raised from those in attendance, all going towards the emergency response and ongoing projects in Palestine.
Lastly, NSW Parliament played host to a community forum to discuss the immediate and ongoing justice issues in Palestine. Coordinated by Shaoquett Moselmane MP, as well as NSW Parliamentary Friends of Palestine co-convenors David Shoebridge MLC, and Julia Finn MP, the evening featured statements of solidarity from many Palestinian supporters, including his excellency Ambassador Izzat Abdulhadi, Head of the Palestine Mission to Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Nations.
The attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip have been deadly, and combined with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the long-term impacts on Palestinians in the Occupied Territories will be devastating. Only through solidarity will there be any improvement, and the response by the broader Australian community shows we are all willing to do our part.