Palestinian and Qatari flags fly high in Gaza’s fan zone

Qatar brought the World Cup to Palestinians with fan zones and viewing halls in Gaza and the West Bank, delivering on a promise made by Doha earlier this week.

Last night’s game was viewed by thousands of Gazans at the Martyr Saad Sayl hall in the heart of the city. Palestinians in the besieged Strip also got to take part in numerous World Cup activities that will continue until the end of the tournament.

The Absa Sports Hall at the Ramallah recreational complex, where more World Cup-related activities are scheduled to support Qatar’s national football team, allows Palestinians throughout the West Bank to watch the matches.

Translation: thousands of supporters stand behind the Qatar national team in their Ecuador face off at the Saad Sayl hall in Gaza.

The programme is part of Qatar’s efforts to make the World Cup accessible to all people, particularly Palestinians living under Israeli occupation. The initiatives also highlight how important the Palestinian struggle is, as it has always been for Qatar.

Additionally, more than 8,000 Palestinians have been given permission to attend the World Cup.

Palestine will be on Doha’s “conscience” throughout the World Cup, according to Lolwah Al-Khater, the assistant foreign minister of Qatar, who made this declaration on Friday.

“We expect to celebrate [the World Cup] with thousands of our brothers and sisters from Palestine and we affirm here that their cause and our just cause in Palestine will always remain present in our conscience,” Al-Khater said, while taking aim at crimes committed by the Israeli occupation.

The remarks by the Qatari diplomat were made at a news conference with representatives from Qatar Charity and the Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS), which also marked the beginning of a project aimed at giving refugees and other displaced people a taste of the World Cup. 

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