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The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

Letter From Barcelona: Protesters Demand Peace in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Vanessa Franco

In a powerful display of solidarity, hundreds gathered on the streets of Barcelona late last month to protest the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This particular protest, which took place in the heart of the historic city center, targeted Spain’s arms trades with Israel. 

The Oct. 28 demonstration attracted a diverse crowd representing people from various backgrounds and ages. 

“I’ve never seen a protest of this magnitude in my 42 years of living here,” one protester, a Barcelona resident named Miguel, told The Inquirer.

“Solidarity is the reason I am here,” he added.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has raged for decades. But the Oct. 7 attacks by Hamas militants, who killed 1,400 Israelis adjacent to the Gaza Strip and took hundreds hostage, escalated the crisis to the level of a new war.

Israel’s bombings of Hamas targets within Gaza in recent weeks have killed some 10,000 Palestinians, and images of the bloodshed and destruction have sparked outrage and sympathy worldwide, prompting many cities to organize protests like the one in Barcelona.

The recent demonstration here remained peaceful throughout, with poetry, music and dancing that reflected the spirit of solidarity between the Catalan and Palestinian people — both of whom seek national independence. 

Israel has faced growing criticism for its military actions in Gaza, while the Palestinian militant group Hamas has been condemned for its brutal assault on Israeli civilians and continued rocket attacks into Israel. The violence has left Israelis and Palestinians living in fear that they’ll face further devastating consequences.

“It’s clear there is a genocide happening in front of our eyes — innocent people are dying,” said Adam, a traveler from the UK who attended the Barcelona protest.

He was accompanied by his friend, David, from Lebanon, who said he had “heard about this conflict my whole life.”

“The entire region is living in fear right now,” David said. “The military industrial complex always finds a way to profit from the deaths of innocent people.” 

The Barcelona protest reflects a growing global movement calling for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Tens of thousands have marched in their cities during recent weeks, coming together to demand an end to the violence and urging their governments to take action to support a diplomatic solution.

Toward the end of the protest here, as the crowd began to die down, three women stood near the city center handing out stickers with anti-war slogans written on them.

The women, who introduced themselves as Roser, Concha and Cruz, said they have been living in Spain and “protesting our entire lives.”

“We will mobilize and rally against any injustice,” said Roser. “This isn’t new for us.”

As the protest concluded, faint voices could still be heard chanting in the distance: “No a La Guerra,” or “No to War.” 

“The message is clear: the entire world is watching and will stand united,” said Concha. “They say no to war and that is one thing we should all be able to agree on, no matter who you are.”

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About the Contributor
Vanessa Franco, Staff Writer / Barcelona Correspondent

Comments (2)

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  • F

    FANov 15, 2023 at 2:40 pm

    Woah, thank you for sharing these people’s stories. Very well written.

  • O

    O.G.Nov 15, 2023 at 5:49 am

    Super unique perspective!! Great read.