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Thursday, October 28, 2021

PHOTOS: More than QR148 million raised for Gaza at Qatar festival

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Photos by Katara and Qatar Red Crescent Society
This article was updated on Aug. 10 to reflect the latest donation figures.

Thousands of Qatar residents gathered at the Katara Cultural Village amphitheater last night to attend the nation’s first Gaza Solidarity Festival.

The two-hour long event featured performances from singers, poets and artists who spoke to a responsive crowd about Palestine, homeland and love.

After a negotiated three-day ceasefire expired on Friday, Israel restarted its military campaign, as Hamas resumed firing rockets into the southern part of the country.

Al Jazeera English reports that some 1,800 Palestinians have been killed in the four-week military assault so far, with the UN saying the vast majority of the dead are civilians.

To help the families of victims and those who have fled their homes, the festival organizers spent a portion of last night fundraising for Gaza.

Donations

According to the Peninsula, more than QR57 million was raised during the event.

Several major corporations announced donations, including:

  • Qatar Petroleum (QR10 million);
  • Qatar National Bank (QR5 million);
  • Qatar Islamic Bank (QR3 million);
  • Khaleeji Commercial Bank (QR2 million); and
  • The Alfardan Group (QR1 million).

Additional figures honoring contributions by individuals were also announced during the event, and a final tally is expected to be announced today.

Speaking to Doha News yesterday, Ahmed Al Khulaifi, the head of resources mobilization at QRCS, said that at least 3,000 people turned up for last night’s event, which had come about after a week of planning with Qatar TV, Al Rayyan TV and q.media.

He added that donations would go toward supporting QRCS initiatives on the ground in Gaza, including operations to bring medications and ambulances to the area, to restore the water and sanitation grids and toward internally displaced people in need.

Artistic contributions

Many poets, singers and artists also donated their time to the cause yesterday.

The line-up included Qatari poets Khalil Ebrahim Al Shabrami, Ahmed Bin Ghayda, Ali Maeed Al Ghayassim, and Ali Saddar Al Khulaifi; Saudi poet Ali Bin Hamri; and Palestinian poets Nasuh Al Nasser, Muflah Tabuni, and Abdulnasser Mohammed Taya.

Additionally, Qatari singer Fahad Al Kubaisi and Palestinian crooners Sana Moussa, Dalal Abu Amna and Momin Al Farrah performed in tandem with an onstage orchestra.

Many in the crowd took to waving Palestinian and Qatari flags during performances, and lauding poets as they spoke of Gaza.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/162329005″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

During her soulful performance, Moussa wiped a tear from her face as she sang about the resistance and Palestinian families.

Palestinian born poet Yaroub Rayyan, 55, who has lived in Qatar for over 35 years, took to the stage toward the end of the event to recite some of his poetry.

Rayyan said seven of his relatives have been injured in the past few weeks, though his daughter has evaded harm.

Speaking to Doha News prior to his appearance, he commended efforts by the Qatari government to aid the Palestinian people.

“I appreciate what (this country) is doing. It’s the only Arab country that has supported Gaza throughout history. Only Qatar has stood by us,” he said.

Did you attend the event? Thoughts?

18 COMMENTS

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wee_johnnie
wee_johnnie
7 years ago

Well done to all involved, but why is not more being done to prolong the ceasefire? News reports suggest ceasefire was broken after rockets were fired from Gaza into Israel. Possibly Qatar should be using political pressure to try and stop Hamas from breaking the ceasefire as this will just cause retaliatory strikes and put the people living in Gaza in more danger.

To stop the needless bloodshed of innocent people on both sides of the border, the ceasefire has to be maintained and talks commenced to find a peaceful solution to the various issues.

Continually breaking ceasefires will never achieve peace and lead to a greater human tragedy.

Indifferent
Indifferent
7 years ago
Reply to  wee_johnnie

Continually occupying stolen land will also never achieve peace. Geeze, idiots should really not give their opinion, shut up and save face. 1,800 dead and Hamas is the one that should be pressured.. you are so blind and naive.

Huzz
Huzz
7 years ago
Reply to  Indifferent

Indifferent, I think that you may be missing the point here. The Israelis yearn for Hamas to fire rockets as it justifies their actions. Land grab does not matter right now as it is stopping the killing that is important. The Palestinians cannot solve this problem by themselves as it is like an old lady being mugged and just kicking the 6 foot mugger in the shins repeatedly. Hamas has to stop for the Israelis to stop. Then it is up to the Palestinians Arab “brothers” to solve the problem for them. For too long Western countries have been blamed for not doing anything to solve the situation but now is the time for the Arabs to put aside their millions of differences and take the pressure to Israel.

Indifferent
Indifferent
7 years ago
Reply to  Huzz

Sorry, 1,800 dead should have international outrage, which simply isn’t happening, it’s an embarrassment and a complete disgrace. I have lost faith in humanity. Forget about Arab this Arab that.

Huzz
Huzz
7 years ago
Reply to  Indifferent

I agree with you but its not how governments work.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Indifferent

I agree time to give up on that bit of dirt. For the last two thousand years, Jews, Christians and Muslims have invaded, murdered and enslaved for some piece of holy land. It isn’t holy, it’s blood soaked.

Raven
Raven
7 years ago

Undoubtedly this is a fine and laudable effort to raise awareness and money for those who are suffering as a result of the terrible situation in Gaza. However, it is a great pity that many people in Qatar and other Gulf nations do not show the same degree of enthusiasm for speaking up on behalf of those who are suffering at the hands of ISIS / Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

Where are the protests and fundraising events for the many thousands of Yazidi people who are at this moment stuck on a mountain awaiting their awful fate at the murderous and barbarous hands of ISIS? Where is the public outrage and condemnation for those many thousands of Christians and Shia Muslims who have already been brutally tortured, killed or forced to flee their homes as a result of the actions of ISIS?

Why is it that the suffering of some people in the Middle East is worthy of such local attention and yet the equally awful suffering of others in the Middle East seems to be at best downplayed or at worst ignored locally?

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Raven

They feel the same towards Isis as the murderous scum Taliban now housed in Qatar. The fact they were implicated in the murder of thousands of Shia Muslims does not register as these were not ‘true’ believers.

carpotied2
carpotied2
7 years ago

DOHA, QATAR — A former Qatari ambassador to the United States offered up a warning to the Obama administration Monday that any military intervention on behalf of the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki would be seen as an act of “war” on the entire community of Sunni Arabs.

Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2014/06/16/230512/qatari-us-intervention-in-iraq.html#storylink=cpy

this was few weeks ago.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  carpotied2

Yanni, Isis is just misunderstood. It’s the racist, colonial, imperialist policies of the west that are to blame that has led to the death of non Muslims. If the Christians, Shias and yazdis were not there then this would not happen.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

How religion has poisoned the land of the levant and Middle East for at least the last two thousand years. If we could just remove religion from politics and stop talk of a Jewish state or Ismail state think how much better the world would be. No more Israelites bombarding Palestinians because they believe in the destiny of the Jewish state, no more Islamic war lord from the time of the caliphate to the Taliban and now ISIS, murdering those of a different face and forced conversions. No more Christian fundamentalists in America believing in the end if days due to the Israeli state and some stupid prophecy.

Religion. Together we can find the cure. It’s the least your humanity deserves.

Raven
Raven
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Indeed, the world would be a far, far better place without religion blighting the lives of so many people. As Edgar Allan Poe so aptly observed, “All religion, my friend, is simply evolved out of fraud, fear, greed, imagination, and poetry”.

thedrizzle96
thedrizzle96
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Religion isn’t the problem, politics, money, power are the problems you’re simplifying here to seemingly fit your own agnostic or atheistic beliefs which in turn are a form of “religion” as is money, power and politics and then to further apply that to 2000 years is a bit broad. While I’m sure at some point pious men and women worked to understand their religion and defend themselves in this area or claim land and organize rule over it, that’s certainly not the case to apply to the extremists of today in any religion including atheisism. Anyways well done to the organizers to raise money and hope there will be a chance to use it to rebuild

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  thedrizzle96

It’s not simplifying, Israel was founded as a Jewish state. Religion. Prophet Mohd and those that came after him fought wars to spread Islam. Religion. Crusades to recover the holy land. Religion. Religion oppression of the Iranian people. Religion. Taliban, murder, torture and oppression. Religion. Isis, murder of Christians, Shias and yazdis. Religion. No places of worship in Saudi apart from mosques, a religious police that terrorises the population. Religion.

Palestine and Israel could be solved simply. One state solution. A secular country with freedom of worship and one person, one vote. Do you know what stops that? Religion.

Religion. Together we can find the cure. Your humanity deserves it.

thedrizzle96
thedrizzle96
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Like I said simplification. Hard to take seriously comparing something that happened in 1948 to 1500 years ago to something under-reported and vaguely understood, and take it all as fact, to reach the conclusion that a secular country will have none of this! Conveniently ignoring other motivations for conflict and power. If you want a cure as you claim it’s not going to be found in a world without religion because as much as I’m sure you’d like to see that, it won’t happen, the “cure” is in peace with justice. Justice for Palestinians and Israelis, sadly there are many too drunk on power to ever compromise or agree to something that will define their legacy softly or as stopping short of ultimate success and victory. Individual egos and concentrated sources of power are at fault for making that prevalant

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  thedrizzle96

Not true. It is simple. Israel was created as a Jewish state. That means only for Jews, not humans, defacto a religious apartheid. same as Saudi Arabia or Iran.

To be a citizen of Qatar you have to be certain things, one of which is Muslim. Also religious apartheid.

You see, religion poisons everything.

thedrizzle96
thedrizzle96
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Disagree. Our discussion, however, is in the process of poisoning this thread!

Coco
Coco
7 years ago

Is it just me or is the amount in the title dropping considerably? Oh well…must be the administrative charges…

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