Shouldn't SIL be more focused on efforts to save Malaysia's economic arse than getting involved in squabbles in somebody elses backyard? Oxford right?
SIL may be better off standing for elections at the next Palestinian poll after Israel exterminates Hamas for the PLO Fatah. He can also win unopposed under the PLO banner.
|Protest against Israel turns into war of words|
|Rahmah Ghazali | Jan 2, 09 8:00pm|
An Umno Youth-led rally against the deadly Israeli air strikes on Gaza Strip turned into a war of words today which saw the Palestinian ambassador having an argument with some protesters resulting in them staging a walk-out.
The protest, held outside the Palestinian embassy in Ampang, was attended by 200 people, including Umno Youth deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin.
Organised by the Coalition Against Israeli Aggression - a group comprising of Umno Youth, Gabungan Pelajar Melayu Semananjung (GPMS), Majlis Permuafakatan Ummah (Pewaris) and Majlis Belia Malaysia (MBM) - the protest was joined by a number of Palestinian foreign students.
The demonstration was to express outrage against the Israeli air strikes that have over the past week killed more than 400 Palestinians and wounded 1,700 others in Gaza Strip.
Under the watchful eyes of two dozens of police officers who were stationed outside the embassy, the protestors kicked off the rally by marching about 100 metres to the embassy.
However, the situation turned rowdy when the Palestinian ambassador to Malaysia Abdel Aziz Abu Ghoush ticked off some of the protestors who were holding photos of Hamas leaders.
He wanted the photos removed as “we do not want to show divisions in the internal affairs of Palestine”.
“There should be no individual photos. We should show our support to all the Palestinians regardless of who they are. We should show our unity against Israel,” screamed Abdel Aziz from the balcony of the embassy building.
But the protesters from Palestine - who were mostly foreign students studying in Malaysia - refused to back down and began arguing with the ambassador in Arabic.
Palestianian protesters walk out
A GPMS leader however tried to calm the situation down by asking the Palestinian and Sudanese student leaders to address the crowd.
But Abdel Aziz was not happy with that either.
“There should be no individual speakers. I am representing Palestine as such I am the only speaker here, besides Khairy Jamaluddin,” he said to angry protests from the crowd.
“We are representing Palestine too!” they shouted.
That was when a handful of Palestinian protestors walked out from the embassy’s compound. As they leave, they held photos of Hamas leaders in the air.
The Palestinians returned only when Khairy, who arrived at the embassy about half an hour later, managed to persuade them to stay with the protesters.
The photos that sparked the controversy were those showing former Hamas leaders, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and Abdul Aziz al Rantissi, both of whom were assassinated by Israeli missile strikes in March and April 2004 respectively.
Other photos depicted current Hamas leader and Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya.
‘I'm not against Hamas’
Ambassador Abdel Aziz later denied that he is linked to Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO), which has a major fall-out with Hamas.
“I don’t have anything against Hamas. I even have a photo of (assassinated Hamas leader) Sheikh Ahmed Yassin with me,” said Abdel Aziz (left).
Hamas, or the Islamic Resistance Movement, has been squabbling with rival Fatah, a coalition member of PLO, since the death of long-time leader Yasser Arafat four years ago.
The tension between the two intensified after Hamas won the Palestinian elections in 2006.
Last Monday, Hamas sent a deadly barrage of missiles deep into Israel, killing three Israelis and wounding two others.
Israel responded with deadly force with warplanes killing 200 Palestinians, including women and children.
Earlier, Khairy, who is also member of parliament for Rembau, gave a spirited speech to the crowd saying that the Coalition Against Israeli Aggression will always be with the Palestinians until “they gain their freedom”.
“I am here to tell you that we, Malaysians - Muslims and non-Muslims - want to show our support to the Palestinians as this is concerning humanitarian and economic issues. This is about unity, freedom and justice of the Palestinians,” said Khairy.
He also added that the coalition has successfully collected RM100,000 of humanitarian aid to be channeled to Palestine and has submitted a memorandum of support to the Palestinians to the ambassador.