Palestinians mark 68th Nakba Day

World Today

Palestinian refugees ride a mock train, dubbed the “Return Train,” while marking “Nakba” or Catastrophe day in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, Sunday, May 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

Thousands of Gazans participated in a massive march to commemorate the 68th anniversary of the 1948 Palestine exodus, literally Nakba (or Catastrophe) Day.

They’re demanding greater unity and recognition in marches across Israel and the Palestinian territories.

CCTV’s Stephanie Freid reports from Tel Aviv and Noor Harazeen has more from Gaza.

Palestinians mark 68th Nakba Day

Thousands of Gazans participated in a massive march to commemoration the 68th anniversary of the 1948 Palestine exodus, literally Nakba (or Catastrophe) Day. They're demanding greater unity and recognition in marches across Israel and the Palestinian territories. CCTV's Stephanie Freid reports from Tel Aviv and Noor Harazeen reports from Gaza.

Follow Stephanie Freid on Twitter @stefanella

The march made its way through the busy streets of Gaza city on its way to the headquarters of the United Nations in the west. The demonstrators wrapped in Palestinian Keffiyehs around their necks, held Palestinian flags, and raised signs reading the names of the Palestinian villages which were destroyed under gun point during the 1948 War.

Nakba is annually celebrated by Palestinians around the world on May 15. The day marks the massive expulsion and forcible displacement of more than 750,000 Palestinians who lost their homes during the 1948 war which resulted in the creation of Israel.

Hussein Abu Harb, a 70-year old Palestinian refugee who fled his village during the war for fear of death, has settled ever since in the al-Shati refugees camp in the coastal territory. However, he still hopes he can return home one day.

“I pray to God we can all return back to our land, we lived very well there,” he said. “We were enjoying, we ate and drank. Here, we are humiliated.”

For a people with no state, the Nakba is continuous for this day. According to a recent report published by the Palestinian Bureau of Statistics (PBS), 5.59 million Palestinian refugees are registered with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency. Nearly 30 percent of them live in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon.