Why Ireland is one of the most pro-Palestinian nations in the world

Ireland is recognized as one of the most pro-Palestinian nations in the world, with high public support for Palestinians and a shared colonial past with Britain informing Irish empathy towards the Palestinian struggle.

Historical backdrop: Ireland and Palestine were both under British control a century ago, with many Irish people empathizing with Palestinians due to a shared history of British occupation.
* Irish people familiar with the colonialist history and oppression identify with the experiences of Palestinians under Israeli occupation.
* This identification extends to other regions that have experienced colonial aggression, such as South Africa and South America.

Facts and figures: Ireland’s solidarity with Palestinians is reflected in its policies and public support.
* In 1980, Ireland became the first EU member to call for Palestinian statehood and was the last one to allow Israel to open a residential embassy in 1993.
* Irish politicians have delivered some of Europe’s most forceful criticism of Israel during the ongoing conflict in Gaza.

Different perspectives: Ireland’s support for Palestinians is not without complications.
* Despite its strong stance towards Palestinians, Ireland’s position during World War II and its silence regarding the mass slaughter of Jews has cast a shadow on its relations with Israel.
* While the Irish government is critical of Israel, former Israeli Ambassador Mark Regev suggests that there’s an element of “anti-Israeli antipathy” in Ireland partially stemming from “traditional Catholic Church antisemitism”.

Cultural and artistic resonance: Support for Palestinians in Ireland extends beyond politics, influencing the nation’s music and art.
* Several prominent Irish bands, artists, and athletes have shown solidarity with Palestinians, participating in protests, fundraising for Gaza, and advocating the Palestinian cause through their work.

Connection in the present: The ongoing conflict in Palestine deeply affects the Irish people, sparking mass demonstrations and initiatives to support Palestinians.
* The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign, led by Palestinian activist Fatin Al Tamimi, has been organizing weekly pro-Palestinian rallies across Ireland.
* The Palestinian Ambassador to Ireland, Jilan Wahba Abdalmajid, notes the Irish government’s willingness to help when it comes to Palestinian issues.
View original article on NPR
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