Alwaght- On August 7, 1979, the late leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (widely known as Imam Khomeini) declared the last Friday of the holy fasting month of Ramadan as International al-Quds day. Since then, millions of people around the world have been commemorating the annual event to express solidarity with the Palestinians and reiterate opposition to the Israeli occupation and expansionist schemes.
From Iran to many Arab and Muslim countries, al-Quds day is marked with rallies condemning the Israeli occupation of Palestine, including the city of al-Quds, which is home to the revered al-Aqsa mosque, one of Islams holiest sites.
Millions of supporters show up on this day around the world chanting "Death to Israel" and burn the Israeli flag while raising the Palestinian flag high. However, International al-Quds day is more than just a day in which people take to the streets to demonstrate fury over the ongoing Israeli aggression, it is rather a day which epitomizes the worlds commitment to the cause and struggle, a day to say out loud that the Palestinian plight has not been buried under the rug, and most importantly to retake the vow to liberate Palestine.
The signification of al-Quds day can be extracted from Imam Khomeinis call for its establishment when he said: "I ask all the Muslims of the world and the Muslim governments to join together to sever the hand of this usurper and its supporters. I call on all the Muslims of the world to select as Al-Quds Day the last Friday in the holy month of Ramadan — which is itself a determining period and can also be the determiner of the Palestinian people’s fate — and through a ceremony demonstrating the solidarity of Muslims world-wide, announce their support for the legitimate rights of the Muslim people."
Many might wonder: what can one day out of 365 do? Well, faith can move mountains. If Muslims can unite for one day, they should be able to unite for much longer and may be even live to see the day the Israeli regime is obliterated.
With al-Quds day marked in the calendars of Muslims, of freedom seekers, and human rights defenders, it is also marked as a day of unity in the face of a common enemy; the Israeli regime. People from all walks of life, in particular Muslims from different sects, ethnicities, and nationalities march side by side to address the issue at the heart of the Islamic nation.
During its tumultuous history, the city of al-Quds has been destroyed twice, besieged 23 times, and attacked 52 times while it has fallen to Israeli regime once, which was enough to trigger a wave of resistance groups and global anti-Zionist movements.
Al-Quds, among other West Bank cities and towns, has witnessed violent clashes between Israeli regime forces and Palestinians, who respond to attacks against peaceful protests or house raids, by throwing stones and this has become the modern-day story of a Goliath and David battle.
Imam Khomeini made clear that "the al- Quds Day is a universal day. It is not an exclusive day for al-Quds itself. It is a day for the oppressed to rise and stand up against the arrogant."
On International al-Quds Day, Muslims can raise their voices in unison and unite under one banner; it is after all the Israeli regimes worst fear. It is a day when the oppressed can find solace when calls for justice can be heard echoing around the world.