Palestinians rally in run-up to UN statehood bid

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Palestinians rally in run-up to UN statehood bid

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The mood was festive – but the cause is deeply felt.

Tens of thousands of people have been rallying across the West Bank to back the Palestinian bid for statehood recognition at the United Nations.

School children and civil servants were given the day off to attend events in Ramallah, Bethlehem, Nablus and Hebron.

Some demonstrators in Ramallah demonstrated what they thought of Washington’s threat to wield a Security Council veto by burning a US flag.

“I am very happy because they are going to declare a Palestinian state. I hope that we will be free,” said one young woman in the crowd.

“A state fulfilling the aspirations of all the Palestinian people should be the culmination of our combat and our struggle,” a young man said.

“It is our right to dream. Our people have the right to self-determination,” another added.

But not all Palestinians are celebrating. There have been no mass rallies in Gaza whose rulers Hamas

have dismissed Friday’s UN bid as a waste of time.