Thu, Apr 12, 2018 - Page 7 News List

Palestinians practice parkour on border

AFP, RAFAH, Palestinian Territories

Palestinian youths on Tuesday practice their parkour skills at a site near the border with Israel, east of Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip.

Photo: AFP

Palestinian parkour experts have performed a special show on the Israeli-Gaza border, near where protests and deadly clashes have occurred since late last month.

Dozens of Gazans on Tuesday evening watched four members of a parkour team flip and twist their way around the site of the camp of what Palestinians have dubbed the Great March of Return.

Israeli soldiers in military observation towers or behind sand barriers surveyed the scene, with the performance several hundred meters from the border fence in Rafah in southern Gaza.

“We came here in the camp of return in Rafah to show our parkour,” Naji Muammar, 27, said. “This is our message to the world that we will return to our country and practice our sport there.”

Mohammed abu Jihad, another of the performers, said: “We don’t have anything to resist with except parkour.”

Gazans have set up tents in five main areas along the Gaza border for the Great March of Return, which is calling for Palestinian refugees to be able to return to their former homes which are now inside Israel.

The protests are expected to continue until the middle of next month, when US President Donald Trump plans to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Muammar said the conservative culture of Gaza, which is run by Hamas, meant practicing parkour was not always easy.

“There are many difficulties,” he said. “Some people prevent us from practicing in parks and on streets of the city.”

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