From 15 to 23 January 2021, activists and organizations around the world joined Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network in the Week of Action to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners. The week of online events, media actions, demonstrations and street stands highlighted the case of Sa’adat, the imprisoned General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation, and the 4,500 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails. The week also highlighted the complicity of the Palestinian Authority with the imprisonment of Sa’adat, part of the Oslo project and its “security coordination” with Israel, as well as the direct responsibility of the United States, UK, Canada and other imperialist powers for Sa’adat’s imprisonment and the ongoing dispossession and colonization of the land and people of Palestine.
People around the world joined in an array of diverse actions and initiatives to demand liberation for Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinian prisoners – and for Palestine, from the river to the sea. Despite the COVID pandemic and attendant health restrictions, activists and organizations devised creative mechanisms to raise the profile and highlight the struggle of Palestinian political prisoners as well as their leadership in the liberation movement.
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network thanks and salutes all of the organizations and activists around the world who joined in the week of action. We invite you to continue to build and organize together for the liberation of Palestinian prisoners and of the land and people of Palestine. If you would like to get involved with Samidoun, launch a chapter in your area, affiliate to the Samidoun Network or plan a joint activity or action — or if your event is not included below — please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Onward — towards victory for Palestine!
Online Launch Event
The week of action was anchored by a webinar on Saturday, 16 January, featuring speakers Lena Meari, professor at Bir Zeit University and the author of “Sumud: A Palestinian Philosophy of Confrontation in Colonial Prisons;” Hadeel Shatara, coordinator of the Samidoun Network in Occupied Palestine; and Mohammed Khatib, coordinator of the Samidoun Network in Europe.
Watch the webinar in English:
Watch the webinar with French translation (via Collectif Palestine Vaincra):
Also on Saturday, 16 January, Collectif Palestine Vaincra in Toulouse, France, a member of the Samidoun Network, organized a Palestine Stand in central Toulouse at metro Capitole, where they distributed large numbers of flyers and gathered solidarity photos with Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.
The Collectif Palestine Vaincra had launched the week of action one day earlier, on 15 January, with media actions and postering throughout Toulouse, including a massive call for “Freedom for Ahmad Sa’adat!”
On Sunday, 24 January, a delegation from the Collectif Palestine Vaincra traveled to Lannemezan Prison to visit Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, the Lebanese Arab struggler for Palestine imprisoned in French jails for over 36 years. During the meeting, he expressed his support and encouragement for the week of action to free Ahmad Sa’adat and the growth of the work of Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.
Earlier, on Saturday, 23 January, activists from the Collectif in Toulouse distributed hundreds of small flyers highlighting the case of Sa’adat in the Bagatelle neighbourhood, building on efforts earlier in the week to post stickers and posters throughout downtown Toulouse and the Minimes district.
Activists in Marseille, France, also posted solidarity photos highlighting their support of the campaign to free Ahmad Sa’adat and Georges Abdallah as part of the week of action.
In addition, Jeunes Revolutionnaires in Lyon and Saint-Etienne organized banner drops and solidarity photos calling for the liberation of Ahmad Sa’adat, Georges Abdallah and all of Palestine:
The Week of Action to Free Ahmad Sa’adat came to a close on Sunday, 24 January as the Unified Campaign to Free Georges Abdallah rallied in Paris, France to free Sa’adat, Georges Abdallah, and all Palestinian prisoners; the rally also highlighted the cases of Walid Daqqa and Kamil Abu Hanish. Over 60 protesters gathered at Menilmontant to express full solidarity with the Palestinian liberation struggle and all Palestinian prisoners in imperialist and Zionist jails. A number of organizations joined the Campaign at the protest, including the ANC de France, ACTA and the Rete dei Comunisti.
Hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza rallied in Gaza City outside the International Committee of the Red Cross on Sunday, 17 January. The protest, organized by the PFLP, marked the 19th anniversary of the Palestinian Authority security services’ abduction of Ahmad Sa’adat, the under the Oslo accords’ PA “security coordination” with Israel.
After joining the Liebknecht-Luxemburg-Demo in Berlin, Germany, on 10 January, joining with thousands of revolutionary leftists with Palestinian flags, signs and banners highlighting the cases of Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners, Samidoun Deutschland launched a day of media actions in Berlin with posters, stickers and graphics throughout the city on Sunday, 17 January.
The Volksrat der Suryoye in Europe issued a call to action and a solidarity message with political prisoners for the week of action, highlighting Ahmad Sa’adat, Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, Mehmet Ozdemir, Ali Osman Kose and Musa Asoglu, himself imprisoned for 4 years as a political prisoner in Germany:
In Magdeburg, Germany, Infoladen Bleibt hung a banner at their social center on 18 January to highlight the Week of Action to Free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners.
Next, on January 20, Samidoun Deutschland and Free Palestine FFM took to the streets in Frankfurt, Germany with posters, stickers and information materials to draw attention to the imprisonment of Ahmad Sa’adat, Georges Abdallah, Mumia Abu-Jamal, Khalida Jarrar and all political prisoners.
On January 23, in Dusseldorf and Bremen, activists posted signs, graffiti and images highlighting the demand to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners.
On Saturday, 23 January, No Pasaran Hamburg issued a statement and participated in a demonstration for the freedom of all political prisoners. In their statement for the demonstration, No Pasaran Hamburg highlighted the continuing threat of US imperialism for Palestine: “A series of oppression, exploitation, and genocide – these are the results of the USAmerican settler politics; these are the goals and practice of the Israeli government. Just like the headquarters for global democracy in Washington exterminated 95% of the North American indigenous peoples, the so-called “only democracy in the Middle East” wants to carry out their policies against the Palestinians.”
Meanwhile, in Offenbach, activists posted signs and graphics around the city on 23 January calling for freedom for Sa’adat and his fellow imprisoned freedom fighters.
Samidoun Deutschland is continuing its activities for the liberation of Ahmad Sa’adat with an online event on Friday, 29 January, taking place in Arabic with English translation. Mohammed Khatib, the coordinator of Samidoun in Europe will speak about the Palestinian prisoners and the liberation struggle. The event will take place at 7 pm Berlin time (8 pm Palestine, 10 am Pacific, 1 pm Eastern) on Zoom.
Samidoun Sweden in Stockholm and Gothenburg organized a photo campaign to collect solidarity images highlighting support for Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners. They gathered selfies, online meeting photos and more, with signs calling for the liberation of Sa’adat and of the Palestinian people.
On 21 January, activists in Stockholm displayed two banners on large roads, denouncing imperialism and calling for freedom for Ahmad Sa’adat.
In Gothenburg, the local section of the Left Party highlighted the week of action for Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners in its Instagram stories, tagging Samidoun Gothenburg:
A Swedish leftist podcast, Eld & Rörelse, with a focus on military history and related subjects highlighted Sa’adat and the week of action on their Instagram page:
In Denmark, activists of the Internationalt Forum published a series of articles for the Week of Action highlighting the case of Ahmad Sa’adat. The Internationalt Forum – Middle East Group published a report in Danish in Arbejderen, the newspaper of the Communist Party.
Further, the Internationalt Forum also translated Ahmad Sa’adat’s introduction to the French edition of Huey Newton’s book in Danish, publishing it at Konfront.dk. The translation was made from the Swedish translation produced by Samidoun Stockholm.
In Belgium, the Plate-Forme Charleroi-Palestine highlighted the Week of Action to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners with a series of actions and photo campaigns. At the 401st rally in front of the Israeli embassy in Brussels, organized by the Association Belgo-Palestinenne, Plate-forme Charleroi-Palestine raised posters for the campaign and the week of action, demanding freedom for Sa’adat and fellow imprisoned Palestinians.
The Plate-forme continued the campaign of photo solidarity, gathering many photos in Charleroi of supporters of the Palestinian prisoners.
On Friday, 22 January, Secours Rouge posted a solidarity action in Brussels, affixing three large banners calling for freedom for Ahmad Sa’adat and Georges Ibrahim Abdallah as part of the week of action:
On Saturday, 23 January, Samidoun Nederland joined with Revolutionaire Eenheid, Partizan, Migrante (Philippines) and ILPS to hold a demonstration on Museumplein in Amsterdam, the Netherlands highlighting and denouncing continuing US imperialism.
The demonstrators noted that the inauguration of Biden will not bring any fundamental change to the United States, which remains the greatest enemy of working people around the world. Samidoun activists carried Palestinian flags and posters calling for freedom for Ahmad Sa’adat, highlighting the role of the U.S. in the ongoing colonization and occupation of Palestine.
In Italy, the Colletivo Contro la Repressione per un Soccorso Rosso Internazionale participated in Milan on 11 January 2021 in a protest outside the court where anti-Zionist activists for Palestine are being placed on trial for challenging Zionists at an anti-fascist protest in Italy, commemorating liberation from fascism, on 25 April 2018. There, they announced the week of action at the protest and declared their support for the campaign to free all Palestinian prisoners as well as fighting repression in Italy.
Comrades in solidarity with Palestine in Milan also joined in the protest outside S. Vittore jail in Milan on 18 January 2021, in support of 22 prisoners being subjected to trial for alleged riots in March 2020, in protest of the failure to protect prisoners from COVID-19. 14 prisoners were killed in the suppression of this uprising. They noted their solidarity with resistance to state repression in Italy as well as their solidarity with Ahmad Sa’adat, Georges Abdallah and all Palestinian prisoners.
A number of organizations in Italy, including Rete Italiana ISM, Colletivo Zam, West Climbing Bank, Acrobax, Compagne e compagni di Torino, Gaza FREEStyle, Casale Alba 2 and La Strada, joined in the Week of Action to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners.
Activists hung banners in Milan, created a graffiti mural in Rome and posted signs and banners in Val Susa, noting that the Sa’adat case highlights the struggle against occupation as well as that against imperialism and security coordination and affirming Palestinians’ right to resist.
In Switzerland, Secours Rouge Geneve organized a photo solidarity campaign with Palestinian prisoners and Ahmad Sa’adat, posting a series of photos in support of the Palestinian liberation struggle.
The Friends of Palestine Against Imperialism and Zionism issued a solidarity statement in support of the week of action, emphasizing the call for the boycott of Israeli occupation: “Today, we join the call of Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network and once again call for Sa’adat’s immediate release from the Zionist prisons, as did we many times before. We also do stress a sine qua non of a real friendship with the Palestinian people and a real support to the Palestinian captives: An effective boycott of the Zionist entity, including a full ban on trade with Israel and an immediate end to all military & intelligence relations with it. A sine qua non that Turkish governments never fulfil!”
The Tunisian Committee of Solidarity for the Liberation of Georges Abdallah joined the week of action, hoisting flags and banners in support of Ahmad Sa’adat and Georges Abdallah at a solidarity mural for Palestine:
Palestinian and Tunisian activists and artists in Tunis took solidarity photos highlighting their support for the week of action and the demand to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners.
On 15 January, Anti-Imperialist Action Ireland announced that members of Macradh-ISR Youth’s Slua Áth Cliath were launching in a seven day solidarity fast, with a different comrade taking part each day, to demand freedom for Sa’adat and his fellow political prisoners. Declaring, “From Ireland to Palestine- One Struggle Against Imperialism!” AIA also posted solidarity posters around Dublin, Ireland.
On 21 January, Eirigi activists in South Dublin joined the international week of action with solidarity photos and posters highlighting the case of Ahmad Sa’adat and his defiant speech before the Israeli military court that sentenced him to 30 years in prison.
As part of the international week of action for the imprisoned General Secretary of the PFLP Ahmed Sa’adat, and all Palestinian prisoners, Saoradh party activists and Éistigí members based at Saoradh’s Newry office showed solidarity and support at the Palestinian murals in Newry on Saturday, 23 January. Activists held flags, posters and banners in the short demonstration in Catherine Street. Saoradh affirmed, “Ireland and Palestine have an unbreakable bond which today is as strong as ever as together we struggle against colonial and imperialist aggression.”
Saoradh also issued a statement for the week of action, affirming: “Saoradh recognise the plight of the Palestinian struggle and on this occasion we respond to the call for international support and express our movement’s solidarity to Ahmed Sa’adat and the oppressed Palestinian people. Our chains will be broken before we are.”
In Nottingham, supporters of the Revolutionary Communist Group took part in the week of action, highlighting the cases of Georges Abdallah, Ahmad Sa’adat and Issam Hijjawi Bassalat and the Saoradh 9 with photos and solidarity images. “The RCG stands for the release of all political prisoners of imperialism, from Ahmad Sa’adat to Mumia Abu-Jamal, and will continue to take the streets, inspired by their resistance,” they affirmed.
Earlier, on 17 January, activists with Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! gathered in Manchester as part of the week of action, highlighting the case of imprisoned Palestinian doctor Issam Hijjawi Bassalat in British jais.
Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights at Queen’s University (SPHR Queen’s) launched a sticker sale in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners as part of the Week of Actions. Protests from the sale of stickers will be donated to support Palestinian prisoners’ families.
Canada Palestine Association and BDS Vancouver-Coast Salish Territories posted solidarity photos calling for liberation for Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners.
Within Our Lifetime – United for Palestine joined the week of action with graphics and social media posts, highlighting Ahmad Sa’adat’s ongoing political leadership and struggle: “Throughout his time in prison, he has carried on in the legacy of so many before him, putting pen to paper to amplify the cause of resistance and revolution and internationalize the struggle of those locked inside the prison walls. Freedom for Ahmad Sa’adat and ALL Palestinian prisoners!”
The Freedom Socialist Party in the Bay Area joined the campaign for the Week of Action to free Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners with solidarity photos, sharing the call for actions and social media campaigns.
In Greece, the Anti-Imperialist Front joined the week of action, posting banners in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle and demanding freedom for Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinian prisoners along the road leading to the Israeli embassy in Athens.
The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (of which the Samidoun Network is a member) Commission 10, posted a solidarity statement and a series of photos highlighting solidarity with Sa’adat and the campaign to free him and all Palestinian prisoners. As the commission affirmed, “We join the struggle for Palestinian self-determination and liberation against the imperialist powers and Zionist-Israel occupation!”
The Anti-Imperialist Front created a poster and video for the Week of Action, affirming their ongoing support for Palestine and the Palestinian resistance.
Finally, on 18 January, the Global Campaign to Return to Palestine — of which Samidoun is a part — launched its campaign for 2021 as a year of action against normalization with a live broadcast from Gaza.
The “normalization” project being promoted by the United States and its partners, particularly reactionary Arab regimes, is an attempt to legitimize the illegitimate: the theft of Palestinian land and the expulsion of the Palestinian people at the hands of reactionary regimes in league with imperialism. Standing with the Palestinian prisoners is part and parcel of confronting normalization. During this week of action, we will join with the Global Campaign to Return to Palestine’s call to action against normalization for 2021.
As the week of action concludes, we urge all to continue to join Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network in a collective call for the freedom of Ahmad Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners, with action and global solidarity to escalate the boycott of Israel, end aid and support to Israel, organize for justice in Palestine and resist imperialism and colonialism with ongoing actions and mobilization. We encourage organizers to continue to make use of these resources in organizing: