SURAKARTA, PALESTINOW.COM — To celebrate Palestine Solidarity Day marked by the United Nation on 29th November 2018, students from JN UKMI UNS held a solidarity event for Palestine. JN UKMI UNS is an organisation to gather and to share knowledge on Islam at the local state university named Universitas Sebelas Maret or Sebelas Maret University. This solidarity event brought the theme Palestine Solidarity Run: Peace, Love, Humanity (02/2012) to life.
The event took place at a Sunday morning city leisure and sport program called Car Free Day Solo, where the city government close the main roads of the city to give more opportunities and more open space for the people to do sports, hobbies, or simply a stroll. As the sun rose at 06:00 o’clock ,131 runners registered for the event ran a short-distance track of 2.1 kilometers from a local eating spot called Richeese Factory to a bank named HSBC Bank. Fourteen communities supporting the freedom of Palestine land attended the event as a sign of support, such as the representatives of Bakti Nusa Dompet Duafa, Rumah Kepemimpinan, The Yukha, LPR Kriya Mandiri, and there’s still more.
Besides the shout of freeing Palestine as a land to Palestinian people, the students also want to remind people of “The Great Return March”, an event held on 30th March 2018 near the Gaza-Israel border. It’s a six-week campaign composed of a series of protests launched at the Gaza Strip. One of the protest calls agenda is calling people for the right of return of Palestinian refugees, which has caused families suffer living apart and not being able to come back to their own land.
“This is the thirty fifth week since the Great Return March took place. We want to bring more awareness to people about Palestine issue. We want those who’s still ignorant to know more. Together with the global society we hope for people coming from different races and beliefs to stand up together in the name of humanity and justice.” said the head of the event organiser and the one who sparked up the idea to create this event in an interview, Muhammad Yahya Ayyasy Alhaafizh.
The event started with shouting “Free free Palestine!” along with the drum rolls at the start line. Counting down from ten to zero led by two young guys from the event organisers started the running event officially. Runners were wearing attributes of Palestine, such as scarves of the Palestinian flag, Palestinian flag jacket, handband, and some were carrying the Palestinian flag itself. There were three Palestinian flagsticks at the finish line for the first three comers.
As an idea to promote cultural togetherness through art and culture in supporting the issue of Palestine, a cover of the song from Coldplay titled “Fix You” performed by a local university student alternative rock group band called The Halfway Down. More to that, Mara Maharesmi stunned audience’s eyes with her modern dance move. Dhini Wahyu and Riska Ayu Hapsari brought us a poem musicalization about whether our ignorance didn’t fool us about what is happening in Palestina. Runners, community members, and everyone passing by who care about this issue signed a petition on giving Palestina freedom and on giving the land back to the Palestinian people. Not to mention, to show the organisation’s concern on people’s health, they opened a booth for a free health-check besides the main stage of the event. This free health-check is conducted by the Crescent Organisation of Indonesian Students founded by UNS Medical Faculty Students.
The representative of a NGO Adara Relief International, Maryam Rahmayani, stated how much she cherished young people who had cared Palestinian issue by organising a solidarity event for Palestine. She acknowledged that the issue of Palestine has been spoken widely in international forum. However, according to her opinion this issue is more than just a humanity issue. It has got something to do with people’s faith because there’s Al-Aqsha Mosque there. The answer and explanation lies in the history when Al-Aqsha Mosque is praised , beloved, and at the same time remains as a holy place for Moslems, Christians, and Jews. (Zalfaa/Shofi)