Solemn faces huddled in the cold outside Summerhill, lighting candles, and wearing the Keffiyeh to honour civilians facing war a world away.
Approximately 100 students gathered on Oct. 16 to show their solidarity with Palestine during a community vigil on campus. Organized by Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR), the vigil mourned the recent and ongoing loss of Palestinian lives in the Gaza Strip.
“I recognize it’s a very hard time in our community but it’s very important to know that we can have a community here at Queen’s and we are large in numbers,” Yara Hussein, ArtSci ’24, said at the vigil.
The vigil’s location was changed last minute from Agnes Benidickson Field, for safety and security reasons cited by Queen’s Event Services, an event organizer explained.
Prayers from the Islamic, Jewish, and Christian faiths were offered, all focused on collective hope and peace to be restored in Gaza. Attendees prayed for the protection of civilian lives during the times of conflict.
In an interview with The Journal, Khadija Farooq, HealthSci ’24, emphasized the vigil fostered a sense of community. To her, the vigil served as a reminder of attendees’ commitment to solidarity with Palestinians.
“People cried together. When I cried, people cried with me. It reminds us again that it’s a human rights issue that should be important to everyone,” Farooq said.
Following the conflict through news outlets reminded Farooq of the privilege and security she and other students live with.
“All I could think about was that nothing on this side of the world seemed like it changed but everything changed on the other side of the world,” Farooq said.
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