Palestinians hold demonstrations against Israeli annexation plan

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GAZA, July 1 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of Palestinians on Wednesday joined a public protest in the Gaza Strip against the Israeli plan to annex parts of the West Bank.

The protestors marched along the streets of Gaza city, holding the Palestinian flag and banners, reading "annexation will not pass" in Arabic and English.

The protest was organized by the Palestinian national and Islamic political factions, which called for considering July 1 a "Day of Rage."

July 1 was set by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the date to declare the annexation of parts of the West Bank.

"The annexation decision is an existential threat to the Palestinian people," said the political factions in a joint statement.

"The Palestinian people will not remain silent and a new wave of struggle would break out," the statement warned.

Protestors in the blockaded Gaza Strip said they got together to express solidarity with the people in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, calling for a national unity.

Meanwhile, activists launched an e-campaign on social media and through local media outlets in Palestine with messages against the Israeli annexation plan.

Shatha Hammad, the campaign coordinator, said in a statement that it is aimed at amplifying the Palestinian message from all over the occupied territories against annexation on the date Israel set for launching it.

The Israeli government is planning to annex more than 30 percent of the West Bank, including the Jordan Valley. It also plans to impose sovereignty on several Israeli settlements in the territory.

Tension between the two sides has mounted after Netanyahu announced that his annexation plan will be implemented on July 1.

Netanyahu said on Tuesday that his government is still "working" on his West Bank annexation plan, hinting at the postponement of the controversial move.

Netanyahu and Benny Gantz, leader of Blue and White party, are at odds over the starting date of the annexation, with Netanyahu declaring July 1 as its start-date and Gantz wanting to postpone it until after the coronavirus crisis.

Israel's annexation plan was received with widespread condemnations by the Palestinians, most of the Arab world, and the international community. Enditem

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