In
1948, over 750,000 Palestinians were driven out of their homes in historic
Palestine into neighbouring Arab countries and around the world. Some ended up
as refugees in their own land. The Nakba (“Catastrophe”) marks the beginning of
the longest refugee crisis the world has seen. There are now over five million
Palestinians waiting to fulfil their lawful and long-awaited right of return.
Hundreds of thousands lost their homes, saw their families scattered and their
livelihoods destroyed. Thousands continue to suffer under the current Israeli
military occupation. This historic period should be a reminder to the world of
the enormity of the refugee crisis which has continued to worsen for
Palestinians; apart from anything else, it provides much-needed context to the
conflict still playing out before our eyes.

Throughout the year, Interpal dedicates itself to raising funds for
Palestinians in need and these funds have helped to improve the lives of many
refugees in Palestine and its neighbouring countries. During the Nakba
commemoration period, Interpal’s focus is on the refugee crisis. Interpal has
started to raise funds for the Refugee Relief programme which will provide many
families with medicine, food and financial aid. The target this year is
£300,000 which we hope to reach by the end of May, insha’Allah (God-willing).

Interpal has also recently partnered with UNRWA to provide Syrian refugees with
much-needed financial aid. Many have fled from the crisis in Yarmouk camp in
Damascus which ISIS overran last month. The camp was once home to 160,000
Palestinian refugees but over the past year this has dwindled to just 18,000.
The Syrian regime has made the lives of these refugees incredibly traumatic
with round the clock bombardments. In what has been a tragic year for the
refugees in Syria, little has been done by the international community to ease
their suffering. We at Interpal fear that violence in Yarmouk and other refugee
camps will escalate; we also hope that a practical solution is found before even
more lives are lost.

This month we will be hosting a live appeal on Islam Channel on Friday, 15 May.
Please tune in and donate as much as you can. We will also be holding a special
Nakba dinner on Saturday, 30 May in central London, for which tickets are on sale. For more information on what promises
to be a lively and informative evening, please contact us on:
fundraising@interpal.org.
There
will be live entertainment and all donations will go towards our Nakba campaign.

Whoever forms the next government in Westminster after the General Election, we
hope that they will place the Palestine crisis at the heart of foreign policy.
There is an opportunity to right a historic wrong; we hope that the victorious
politicians will take it.

Ibrahim Hewitt

Chairman