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Protest on Gaza violence staged in Little Rock

By Ashley Nerbovig

This article was published July 19, 2014 at 2:30 p.m.


About 100 people turned out Saturday in Little Rock to protest violence in the Gaza Strip.

About 100 people turned out Saturday in Little Rock to protest violence in the Gaza Strip.

Yasmin Hamad, 27, of Little Rock organized the protest, held at the downtown farmers market, through a Facebook event and posted the information on the page of the Islamic Center of Little Rock, a mosque and community center located at 3224 Anna St. Members of the center as well as friends of the Muslim community arrived carrying signs with slogans against what they call Israeli aggression in Gaza.

Amir Qureshi, 41, of Little Rock said the protest was meant to be peaceful.

“We are showing support for the people getting killed in Gaza, mostly children,” Qureshi said.

Hamad, who is originally from Gaza, said her uncle and his family were killed two weeks ago in bombings there, and his two children are being cared for by her brother, who is finding it difficult to get the children medical attention.

“There is no food, no water,” Hamad said. “They got a shipment from Egypt last week, but it was all contaminated and spoiled.”

Shelley McCarty with the Little Rock Police Department said the group went into the River Market police station before beginning their demonstration and asked about the rules related to protesting in the area. McCarty and a second officer went to monitor the event and said the protesters could not march in groups larger than five or chant without a permit.

McCarty said the protesters would not be asked to disperse as long as they followed these regulations.

“They are not violating any guidelines, and are not disruptive to the rest of the River Market,” McCarty said.

Hamad said she hopes the protest will increase awareness of the problems facing the area and that people will donate to reliable organizations who can help families in Gaza.

“We want to be as peaceful as we can,” Hamad said. “We want people to be educated. The truth is, this is not an equal war.”

The protest began at noon and dispersed a little before 2 p.m. Hamad said she plans to organize another protest next weekend, this time with a permit.


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DontDrinkDatKoolAid says... July 19, 2014 at 4:08 p.m.

They must be some kind of specially stupid those protesters.

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leonturnage says... July 19, 2014 at 6:47 p.m.

According to UNICEF, 73 of the victims in Gaza were under the age of 18. God bless these poor people.

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FreeSpiritMan says... July 19, 2014 at 7:03 p.m.

ddka ...... that's what is great about the US, they have as much right to protest as you do.
If someone was occupying you state what would you do?

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DontDrinkDatKoolAid says... July 19, 2014 at 7:51 p.m.

Well who's state are talking about FSM?

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HM2 says... July 19, 2014 at 8:01 p.m.

DDDKA They're not especially stupid, they're especially arrogant. Hamas is the one lobbing rockets into Israel, Israel only fires back in retaliation.The liberal media is trying to make Israel look like the bad guys and it Ain't gonna work. The days of runaway liberalism are numbered. Lets take our country back.

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nwar says... July 19, 2014 at 9:57 p.m.

Hamas is truly setting their civilians up for death. But Israel is also putting them in an untenable position. '
The settlements must stop in the west bank.

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RonalFos says... July 19, 2014 at 10:36 p.m.

Israel needs to get out of the West Bank entirely! Their constant taking of more and more land is driving Palestinians nuts.

( | suggest removal ) says... July 20, 2014 at 3:53 a.m.

Elect a terrorist group to your government, continually lob missiles and mortars at Israel, dig tunnels up under the border to conduct terrorist activities - Gaza is getting what they deserve. Israel has every right to defend her people. I hope they destroy Hamas once and for all. It would be best for both sides. The blood of all victims on both sides is on the Palestinians hands.

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Humanity says... July 20, 2014 at 5:55 a.m.

Please get your facts right.
Read the history of Palestine and Israel.
Israel is a ruthless occupier of Palestinian land.... Someone takes over your house , you won't fight back?
And forget about religion or who is right who is wrong, a state that allows killing unarmed civilians , women and children ... Could not be just or defending itself.
Hamas rockets are ... Joke ... Research as to how many people got killed in Israel from the rockets of Hamas showering on them ! Versus how many Israel has killed in Gaza .
It is an unfair war ...

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arstateemployee says... July 20, 2014 at 6:42 a.m.

@arkateacher54 The reason they elected this government is their despair. It has been 20 years since they agreed to drop their weapons and recognize Israel right to exist. Remember that picture with Clinton, Arafat and Rabin shaking hands. Now it is 20 years later and they are living under siege in a big prison with food shortage, extremely high unemployment in a non-existent economy and settlements being built every day. So back to what you were saying, you expect them to take all that and just shut up and be quiet so they don't get killed. Easy for you to say sitting in the AC in front of your computer.

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