On Saturday, 10 February, 120 people assembled for a rally in the Borough Gardens in Bridport, followed by a march through town, calling for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in Gaza.
The Bridport protest was one of scores of protests in towns and cities across the UK on the National Day of Action, called by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.
The rally in the gardens began with songs by the local choir “Dorset Red,” followed by local speakers including Cllr. Sarah Carney, trade unionists, campaigners, and a school student.
Cllr. Sarah Carney told the rally:
“We’re all here, as are people all over the world, to explain to the leaders of every country that killing people isn’t going to resolve anything. They’ll just carry on the killing until somebody stands up and says, ‘We’re going to stop selling you arms””.
John Burbidge, Chair of Tolpuddle of Unite, the union’s Agriculture and Transport branch, said:
“This government and the opposition need to call for an immediate ceasefire. To stop arming Israel. The Palestinians have lived as refugees for decades. This is an outrage to the world. This is genocide. It has to stop.”
Rob Ferguson, Secretary of DPSC, told the rally that his mother, a Jewish refugee from Hungary in the 1930s, had lost her sister and family members in the Holocaust. His paternal grandparents had fled the pogroms of Jews in the Russian Empire and settled in Britain.
“For myself, the lesson of history, my own family history, is that you always stand with the oppressed, regardless of race, religion, nationality, or background. Today, that means standing with Gaza and Palestine.”.
After the rally, the protest marched through the centre of Bridport, led by local school students, stopping at Buckydoo Square to lay out children’s shoes in memory of the child victims of Israel’s attacks on Gaza. Over 40 percent of Palestinian victims are children.
The march received a positive reception from many in the town, with leaflets taken by passersby, car horn toots, and claps.
The event was organised by Dorset Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which is organising a coach to the ninth National March against the war on Gaza on Saturday 17 February, as part of a global day of action and protest. [Ticket enquiries to [email protected]].
Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres has described the level of civilian death as “unparalleled and unprecedented,” compared to any conflict since 2017. The charity Oxfam has noted that the daily death rate of civilians in Gaza is higher than any other major 21st century conflict.
At least 28,000 people have been killed, 70 percent of whom are women & children. Over half of Gaza’s homes were destroyed or damaged. Every university has been deliberately destroyed. Hospitals, schools, and shelters have been targeted.
Following the eighth, 200,000 strong, national march for a ceasefire in London, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and its partners called a National Day of Action across the country on Saturday, 10 February. A day of rallies, marches, and protests.
Dorset PSC held a rally in Bridport, in the Borough Gardens, on 10 February with local speakers and the choir “Dorset Red,” calling for a permanent, immediate ceasefire and an end to the genocide in Gaza.
Secretary, Dorset PSC
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