Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network chapters and members participated in a wide range of global activities, demonstrations and mobilizations marking 1 May, International Workers’ Day, as did many advocates for justice and liberation for Palestine and for Palestinian political prisoners. The flag of Palestine and banners of liberation were raised at many international demonstrations, calling for freedom for the prisoners and liberation for Palestine from the river to the sea.
Samidoun Deutschland members took to the streets in Frankfurt, Dusseldorf, and Berlin, among other cities in Germany. In Frankfurt, Samidoun was part of a coalition with various organizations for Proletarian 1 May, marching with revolutionary and leftist organizations for liberation in Palestine and confrontation of capitalism and imperialism.
In Berlin, Samidoun members joined many other organizations in a broad Palestine/Internationalist Bloc at the Revolutionary 1 May demonstration. Activists and organizers from a wide range of organizations, including Palästina Spricht Palestine Speaks, Jewish Antifa Berlin, Migrantifa Berlin and many other groups organized a march through the streets of Berlin, which also faced police repression, as has been the case for many past 1 May demonstrations.
The Revolutionary 1 May demonstration, starting off from Hermannplatz, gathered at least 20,000 participants and was marching through Sonnenallee and Karl-Marx-Strasse in Neukolln, with the internationalist block (including the Palestine Bloc) toward the front of the march when a massive formation of police cut off the march.
Just as nearly every year in Berlin, police violence against the Revolutionary 1 May demonstration prevented it from following its route and over 50 people were arrested.
Samidoun Deutschland members also participated in the 1 May demonstration in Dusseldorf. More Palestine organizations and Palestinian community groups protested in Kassel, Freiburg and elsewhere.
In Madrid, Samidoun España, Alkarama Palestinian Women’s Mobilization and the Alternative Palestinian Path (Masar Badil) marched in the main 1 May demonstration and delivered a speech calling for action and mobilization to support the Palestinian people and their liberation struggle.
In Murcia, Samidoun España and Palestina Libre organized a demonstration one day earlier, 30 April, in support of Juani Rishmawi (Juani Sanchez Ruiz), a Spanish aid worker in occupied Palestine imprisoned and under interrogation by the Israeli occupation forces since 12 April.
This action joined multiple demonstrations organized by many groups and campaigns across Spain, Catalonia, Galiza, and the Basque country in support of Juani, and demanding her immediate release.
In Rotterdam, Netherlands, Samidoun Nederland, Revolutionaire Eenheid and others joined an internationalist 1 May demonstration in support of liberation movements — and freedom for political prisoners — from Palestine to the Philippines.
In Gothenburg, Sweden, Samidoun Göteborg posted stickers and posters throughout the city in support of Palestine as part of 1 May actions. They prepared the following message for 1 May demonstrations:
“Down with Swedish colonial violence – in Palestine, Mali and Sápmi!
Long live May 1, day of celebration for the international working class, for proletarian internationalism and for the struggle against imperialism, colonialism and fascism!
As Samidoun Gothenburg, we continuously uphold solidarity with the Palestinian liberation struggle, and especially solidarity with one of the vanguards of the liberations struggle, the Palestinian prisoners. They struggle and lead the struggle against Israeli apartheid, occupation and settler colonialism, and specifically on the international day of the working class we must highlight the big Israeli labor federation Histadrut as a pillar of the oppression and exploitation of Palestinians. Another burning front of struggle is the area Sheikh Jarrah in Jerusalem, where tens of Palestinian families, hundreds of Palestinians, are threatened by evictions, home demolitions and forced displacement by the occupation. Aside from the occupation itself, the Palestinian resistance is struggling against international reactionary and imperialist accomplices, among others Sweden.
Sweden participates in imperialist and colonial crimes all over the world. In this very moment, Sweden participates in the colonial military adventures of France in Mali, where as late as last week three Swedish soldiers were wounded. The Swedish Armed Forces decline to comment on what Swedish soldiers are doing in Mali, but history speaks for itself. Meanwhile, Swedish colonial politics are waged in Sápmi, where the Sámi people and their allies in mainly the environmental and climate movement are putting their lives on the line for the forests, for the land and for the future.
On this day of internationalism, of struggle against imperialism, fascism and colonialism, knowing that no one is free until all are free, we conclude with the following:
Down with Swedish colonial violence i Palestine, in Mali, in Sápmi!
Boycott Israel and the occupation of Palestine!
Boycott the Zionist labor federation Histadrut!
Free all Palestinian and revolutionary prisoners!
Long live Palestine!”
In Toulouse, France, the Collectif Palestine Vaincra joined thousands of people at the 1 May march in Toulouse, France. They hung flags and banners and a massive banner over the street calling for the freedom of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, the revolutionary Arab Communist struggler for Palestine imprisoned in France for nearly 37 years.
They distributed thousands of flyers and collected hundreds of signatures in support of the immediate release of Georges Abdallah.
The Collectif also issued an appeal from CGT trade unionists, members of France’s largest labor federation, calling for the boycott of the Histadrut:
In many cities and towns in France, activists for Palestine highlighted the campaign to win Georges Abdallah’s freedom at 1 May mobilizations.
In Paris, the Unitary Campaign for the Liberation of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah mobilized a strong block in the 1 May demonstration with Palestinian flags, banners and placards demanding Abdallah’s immediate release.
In Auch, participants in the demonstration of 1,000 people distributed signs, stickers and materials calling for Abdallah’s liberation.
The Collectif Libérons Georges 33 in Bordeaux carried banners and signs highlighting Georges Abdallah’s case, while in Marseille, the ANC marched with a banner for his freedom:
In Annecy, activists for Palestine distributed cards for Georges Abdallah, while in Tarbes, they collected signatures and displayed banners highlighting the case.
In Guingamp, organizers carried posters and signs for Georges Abdallah throughout the mobilization.
In Belgium, the Plate-forme Charleroi-Palestine joined the 1 May mobilization, carrying the Palestinian flag and Palestine’s red banner- the flag of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, given to the Plate-forme’s delegation to the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon in 2019.
In Copenhagen, Denmark, the Internationalt Forum joined May Day events, while the Autonom Infoservice put out a call for the freedom of revolutionary political prisoners on 1 May, highlighting the cases of Mumia Abu-Jamal and Leonard Peltier in the US, Kurdish prisoner Nudem Durak, Dimitris Koufodinas in Greece and Ahmad Sa’adat in occupied Palestine. Sa’adat is the imprisoned Palestinian national leader and General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
Samidoun also organized a webinar on the Arab and international dimensions of the Palestinian cause, together with the Masar Badil (Alternative Palestinian Path.) This event, in English, Arabic and Spanish, included talks by Charlotte Kates, international coordinator of Samidoun, and Aimen Remida, member of the Preparatory Committee for the Alternative Palestinian Path Conference and Samidoun Deutschland.
On 1 May 2021, International Workers’ Day, Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network stands with the working class and popular classes of Palestine and the world on this day of struggle for liberation from exploitation, capitalism, imperialism, racism and Zionism. Samidoun organizers are taking to the streets today with their comrades in cities around the world to celebrate and advance our collective struggle.
As we march and organize for the global liberation of workers — including the workers of Palestine — we urge all international workers’ movements to join the struggle for Palestinian liberation, including by participating in the Week of Palestinian Struggle, 15-22 May 2021, marking 73 years of ongoing Nakba and 73 years of Palestinian resistance and revolutionary struggle….
We urge workers’ organizations around the world to continue to build and grow this solidarity with Palestinian workers, the leaders of the Palestinian liberation struggle. At the same time, we also express our solidarity with the struggling workers of the world, including the imprisoned labor union and workers’ movement leaders who are held behind bars or face death threats and repression for their role in defending oppressed workers. From India to the Philippines to France, from Colombia to Egypt and Morocco, we stand with these labor movements targeted for repression. We salute the imprisoned Turkish and Kurdish strugglers, not only in Turkish jails but also in European ones, often targeted for their role in workers’ organizations or even for defending them in court. The liberation of Palestine is fundamentally linked to the liberation of all from imperialism, exploitation and capitalism.
On International Workers’ Day, these struggles must become an occasion to escalate our work to support Palestinian workers, free the prisoners, and liberate Palestine, from the river to the sea. Labor action for Palestine, including the boycott of the Histadrut and of Israeli bonds, is one clear way for organized workers around the world to stand together with Palestinian workers in a collective struggle for liberation that confronts settler colonialism, Zionism, apartheid, capitalism, exploitation and oppression in all forms.
Join us on 15-22 May 2021 — the liberation of Palestine is part and parcel of the liberation of the working class of the world!