LAHORE - People across the country including the City held conferences, rallies and demonstrations on Friday to express solidarity with Palestinians and to condemn continuous air strikes on Gaza.

International conference of Islamic movements held in Sudan last week had appealed to the Muslims across the world to mark Friday as Youm-e-Yakjehti Palestine.

Speakers at conferences condemned Jewish state for killing innocent Palestinian men, women and children and urged the Muslim Ummah to take a joint stance and use influence to rein Israel. They urged Ummah to announce jehad against terrorist Jewish state.

Khateeb highlighted miseries of Palestinians and urged Muslim countries to fulfill their responsibility of saving innocent people from Israeli aggression. Unanimous resolutions, condemning Israeli aggression and growing terrorism, were also passed. After Friday prayers, demonstrations were held outside mosques to condemn Israel and to express solidarity with Gaza people. Carrying placards and banners inscribed with writings against the Jewish state and in favour of Palestinians, highly charged participants chanted slogans against the US, Israel and India. They also burnt the US and Israel flags.

Addressing the Friday congregation at Mansoora, Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Syed Munawar Hasan said in the past, Pakistan had always been at the forefront in support of the just cause of Palestinians. However, the present rulers, under the US pressure, had not shown any warmth in support of the Palestinians or in the condemnation of Israel.

The US, he said, was trying to hoodwink the world by terming the Israeli aggression as its right of defense. He said the statements of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyib Erdogan and Egyptian President Dr Morsi had given hope to the Palestinians and also the Muslim world.

The justice loving forces all over the world had expressed sympathies with the helpless Palestinians and denounced the Israeli brutalities in strong words whereas the Pakistan rulers had disappointed the nation on this score. He said that the rulers in Islamabad should have taken a lead from the statements of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Quaid-e-Millat Liaqat Ali Khan on the issue.

He said sacrifice of Imam Husain gave a message to the nation to rise against the present corrupt and secular rulers and free the country from injustice and tyranny.

The JI held big protest rally outside the Lahore Press Club. The protestors carried placards inscribed with slogans denouncing the Israeli raids on Gaza. JI Secretary General Liaqat Baloch, JI Punjab Chief Dr Syed Waseem Akhtar and others addressed the rally. Liaqat Baloch said that the Muslim Ummah was the target of the US tyrannies as Washington was supporting every aggression against Muslims in the world.

In Islamabad, JI organised a seminar to mark the day. JI deputy Secretary general Dr Farid Ahmed Piracha, in his address, said that Israel was unjustly occupying the Qibla-e-Awwal and the Muslim Ummah should unite to free it from the Zionist hand.

In Karachi, a protest rally was staged from Masjid-e-Baitul Mukaram to Hasan Square, and was led by the JI Karachi chief Muhammad Husain Mehnati and senior party leader Asadulah Bhutto. Speaking on the occasion, Muhammad Husain Mehnati said that Israel was the illegitimate child of the US which had disturbed world peace. The world seemed to be fast heading towards a global war.