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Worldwide protests demand release of Lebanese militant Georges Abdallah

Oct. 25, 2016 3:21 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 26, 2016 12:43 P.M.)
Protest in Gaza demanding release of Georges Abdallah on Oct. 24 (Photo: Samidoun)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Ongoing protests in the occupied Palestinian territory and around the world have demanded the release of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, a Lebanese militant for Palestinian resistance who has been imprisoned by France for more than 32 years.

A rally was held on Monday in front of the headquarters for International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza City, organized by the left-wing Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Palestinian prisoners’ solidarity network Samidoun reported.

Demonstrators burned posters of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, French President Francois Hollande, and US President Barack Obama, who the PFLP said were the “three rulers most complicit in the imprisonment of Georges Abdallah and Palestinian prisoners.”

A message from imprisoned PFLP Secretary-General Ahmad Saadat was read at the rally by PFLP member Haneen Ammar. In his statement, Saadat said that “the prisoners’ struggle for freedom is one struggle with that of comrade Georges Abdallah…his liberation will be a victory for all oppressed people, all prisoners of conscience and victims of torture, a triumph of the rights of the peoples, and of the Palestinian struggle for freedom.”

Protest in Gaza demanding release of Georges Abdallah on Oct. 24 (Photo: Samidoun)

An event in support of Abdallah is scheduled to be held on Tuesday afternoon in Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank, and in the Israeli city of Haifa on Wednesday, as rallies have also been held around the world, including in Beirut, Athens, Tunis, Paris, Istanbul, and Chicago.

The former head of the Lebanese Armed Revolutionary Brigade, Abdallah was sentenced to life in prison in 1987 after being accused of involvement in the 1982 murders in Paris of US military attache Charles Ray and Israeli diplomat Yacov Barsimantov, and the attempted murder of US Consul General Robert Homme in Strasbourg in 1984, during the Israeli invasion and occupation of Lebanon.

He has been eligible for release under parole since 1999, for which he has repeatedly been refused.

According to Samidoun, Abdallah has remained politically active throughout his time in prison, notably joining a mass hunger strike in solidarity with Palestinian hunger striker and PFLP member Bilal Kayid.

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