Leila Khaled, historic figure of the Palestinian resistance and current leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, left-wing Palestinian political party, has delivered a solidarity message to activists in France and around the world demanding the release of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, the Lebanese Arab struggler for Palestine who has been imprisoned in French prison since 1984, despite being eligible for release since 1999.
The video was presented by anti-imperialist collective Coup Pour Coup 31, which is involved in efforts to organize international events on 24 October calling for Abdallah’s freedom, as well as an annual march outside Lannemezan prison, where Abdallah is held.
Text of Leila Khaled’s greeting, in English:
Comrades and friends, sisters and brothers, on behalf of my people, on behalf of my party, the Popular Front for the Liberation (PFLP), and myself, I extend warm greetings to all of you in this event. I am privileged to speak to you and through you, to Georges Abdallah, who is a symbol of freedom fighters against oppression, occupation against imperialists, Zionists and reaction. While I am speaking to you, my people are facing the apartheid state of Israel that launches a brutal fascist attack against our people in Palestine.
Israel is trying to suppress our voices by one policy: killing, killing, and killing Palestinians – women, children and elders. Arresting more and more of the activists. Demolishing more houses. Confiscating more land. Building more settlements on our land and the new brutal means by burning people alive, as they did to the child Mohammed Abu Khdeir last year in Jerusalem, and lately, to the child Ali Dawabsheh and his family near Nablus, and his family.
Our people face and are still facing the Israeli army and the settlers to deal with them. It is our legal right and way to face the abuse artists of the 21st century. Comrades and friends in this occasion let me address my comrade Georges Abdallah through you. Comrade Georges, to us, to all progressive forces, you represent us all in your prison. You are a part of the prisoners movement against occupation and oppression everywhere in this world. Your comrades in the Zionist prisons look forward to your freedom as well to theirs. Comrade Ahmad Sa’adat sends you his warm greetings, with all prisoners. They look upon you as a great symbol for revolutionaries in this world. As we denounce the brutality of the Israeli policies against the prisoners, we also denounce the French government for its continuous attitude toward you being in jail. Yet, we are sure that you are more free than the French government and the judicial system in France.
This event and other events in Lebanon, Palestine and in different places show that you are not alone. We are with you, since 30 years. Comrades and friends, let’s all raise our voices for the freedom of Georges Abdallah and all political prisoners everywhere, in all jails in the world.
I am thankful to every one of you who gave me this opportunity to address you. The price of freedom is very expensive, yet Georges Abdallah chose to pay it. With our support and exposing those who put freedom fighters in prisons, irrespective of their reasons, we can free them at the end of the day. Let us learn from their patience and attitude. Let us all raise our call: Free Georges Abdallah! Free Ahmad Sa’adat! Free all political freedom fighters from imperialist and Zionist and reaction prisons. We shall overcome. Merci, shukran, thank you.