On May 15, 1948, Israel was established as a Jewish-majority state at the expense of the forced expulsion of about 750,000 Palestinians.
The day has subsequently been commemorated annually as Nakba Day.
The word “Nakba” means “catastrophe” in Arabic, and refers to the systematic ethnic cleansing of two-thirds of the Palestinian population by Zionist paramilitaries between 1947-1949 and the near-total destruction of Palestinian society.
Zionist forces had taken more than 78 percent of historic Palestine, ethnically cleansed and destroyed about 530 villages and cities, and killed about 15,000 Palestinians in a series of mass atrocities, including more than 70 massacres.
This year marks 74 years of Al-Nakba, or the Palestinian experience of dispossession and loss of a homeland.
The anniversary comes at a time when many are angered by the killing of prominent Al Jazeera veteran journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.
Palestinian embassy in Doha marks Nakba Day by holding memorial for Shireen Abu Akleh
Members of the Palestinian community and colleagues of slain journalist Shireen Abu Akleh have gathered in Qatar’s capital to mark the 74th anniversary of Nakba Day and commemorate the reporter’s life.
Al Jazeera’s Jamal Elshayyal, reporting from Doha, said that “a lot of people believe that through the murder of Shireen Abu Akleh the Palestinian voice has become a lot more united.”
“She symbolised what was at the essence of the Palestinian struggle – the struggle for freedom, to express oneself,” Elshayyal said.
At least 16 injured at Nakba march at West Bank crossing
At least 16 Palestinians have been injured during clashes that broke out with Israeli forces at the northern entrance to al-Bireh, a West Bank city located 15 kilometres from Jerusalem, the Palestinian WAFA news agency reported.
The Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said the injuries included seven by live ammunition and three by rubber-coated steel bullets. Four people reported breathing following tear gas inhalation.
Israeli forces attacked a rally that took place at the northern entrance to al-Bireh city to mark the 74th anniversary of the 1948 Nakba (“catastrophe”), leading to clashes, WAFA said.
Shireen Abu Akleh filed last report on Nakba before being shot
In her final report before being killed by Israeli forces, Shireen Abu Akleh visited Al Ruwwayyes, one of more than 500 villages from which Palestinians were expelled in 1948.
Among them was Abu Ibrahim, who was 11 years old the day the local mosque was blown up and his family had to flee.
Palestinians “still yearn to return to their homes”, Abu Akleh said in the report. “This is the life of refugees.”
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