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7000 Palestinians and internationals from 76 countries take part in Palestine Marathon
https://imemc.org/article/eight-thousand-people-for-one-voice-the-free-
movement-marathon-runs-for-palestine/

https://www.palestinemarathon.org/news/689.html


The route follows Israel’s illegal 26-foot-high Separation Wall and loops
four times through the city.

Some 7,000 people took part in the “Run for Freedom” Palestine Marathon
today which setoff from Manger Square in occupied Bethlehem.

The route follows Israel’s illegal 26-foot-high Separation Wall and loops
four times through the city. It was chosen to draw attention to the
constraints Palestinians face in their daily lives – that there is no route
that can be run continuously before hitting a border or roadblock. A half
marathon, ten kilometre and five kilometre race also take place alongside
the marathon for families and younger runners.

Earlier today, the 2017 Arab Idol winner Yacoub Shaheen and children from
across the West Bank and East Jerusalem gathered in Bethlehem to mark the
start of the marathon, singing “Dreams alone are not enough” in front of the
runners.

Genvieve Boutin, UNICEF’s Special Representative to the State of Palestine,
was also in attendance at the ceremony and spoke about the particular
importance of the marathon for Palestinian children.

“We’re here today with our own children to run for children in the State of
Palestine,” Boutin told attendees. “For children and young people still
developing, the physical and mental benefits of sport and play set the
foundation for healthy development and life-long learning. It also gives
them an opportunity to express themselves in a positive setting.”

Runners from Gaza were not permitted exit out of the besieged Strip in order
to attend the run.

Earlier this month, Israeli occupation forces also attacked a Palestinian
marathon in the occupied city of Jerusalem which had coincided with a
similar event organised by the Israeli-run municipality in the city.

Large numbers of Israeli troops had been deployed across the main streets of
West and East Jerusalem to protect the Israeli marathon, whilst occupation
troops attacked Palestinian activists who organised the rival run in East
Jerusalem, and arrested some of the runners.

Thousands of Palestinians and internationals from 76 countries ran together
for the 7th annual Free Movement Marathon on Friday morning, in Bethlehem
city, and the surrounding areas.

The massive participation in this unique event, which is increasing its
numbers of participants every year, seems to confirm the growing interest
that brings internationals to the Holy Land to run in the name of freedom.

“We are proud to take part in the Palestine Marathon for the year 2019.
Running for freedom, running for Palestine conveys a strong message from
Palestinians to the world. In Bethlehem, you run in circles to avoid
obstacles and barrier. At the Palestine Marathon, we run for Palestine”,
said EU Representative Ralph Tarraf, according to the PNN.

Whether participants run for the family race (5-kilometer race), the 10-
kilometer race or the 21-kilometer race, the city life stops from the early
morning turning the streets into one global itinerary that starts from the
main square passing through the Aida Refugee camp and al-Khader village.



Since the occupied territories in the West Bank are facing a growing
international tourism flow, the Marathon contributes to enlighten the
international attention to the struggle of Palestine. Running freely out of
the ordinary tourist tracks, breaking into a refugee camp and running
alongside the separation wall, make internationals see through their own
eyes how the territory is actually shaped from the occupation.


Furthermore, a group of Palestinians from the Aida Refugee camp and
international volunteers joined the marathon through a pacific protest
against the Israeli occupation, starting from one of the Israeli watchtower
near the camp.

The right of movement is one of the basic human rights that every human
should have. The illegal occupation of West Bank and Gaza is denying it to
Palestinians that keep on raising their voices in the name of a free
Palestine.

Singing for their prisoners, singing for their lands Palestinians
demonstrate an immeasurable love for their homeland and the strength to keep
on fighting for their freedom.

EU for Palestine: The EU and Member States join the Palestine Marathon

Runners from the European Union (EU), EU Member States and Norway,
yesterday, joined thousands of Palestinians running the Palestine Marathon
organized in Bethlehem. The EU team of around 600 participants ran under the
theme “EU for Palestine”.

Europeans from Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece,
Holland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Portugal,
Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, joined forces to form one
team with one theme: EU4Palestine. This is the second year an EU team
participates in the Marathon to support Palestinians in shedding light on
basic human rights, including the right to move.



“We are proud to take part in the Palestine Marathon for the year 2019.
Running for freedom, running for Palestine conveys a strong message from
Palestinians to the world. In Bethlehem, you run in circles to avoid
obstacles and barriers. At the Palestine Marathon, we run for Palestine,”
said EU Representative Ralph Tarraf.

The Palestine Marathon is organized by the Palestine Olympic Committee
(POC).

The objective of the POC pursuit in the Palestine Marathon is to focus the
lens on the basic right of freedom of movement in Palestine.
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