Friday, 15 April 2016

Remembering Vittoria Arrigoni (4/2/75 -15/4/11) - Stay human


Today I remember the life of Vittoria Arrigoni  a renowned Italian human rights/ peace activist, who served as a volunteer for the International Solidarity Movement, who worked closely with the fishermen and farmers of the occupied Gaza strip. Who for ten years worked for the recognition of Palestinian rights under Israeli occupation.
During the Israeli offensive against the Gaza strip in 2008-09 he acted as a human shield while working with the Palestinian Red Crescent humanitarian organisation. He was also abroad the 2008 Free Gaza Movement Vessel and was imprisoned in Israel several times. He also worked as a freelance  journalist for the Italian daily IL Manifesto and for his own blog Guerilla radio. His daily dispatches written between bombing raids and patchy internet access ended with the plea - "Stay human." which became the motto of anti-israeli peace protests in his native Italy. His authoritative and deeply moving eyewitness accounts were published in 2010 under the title Gaza - Stay human.
On April 14  2011 h kidnapped and the next day brutally murdered by militants in Gaza, which caused international outcry and was unanimously condemned by both Hamas and the Palestinian National authority. A senseless, shocking mindless act.
Known for his infectious smile, and deep humility and the tattoo he bore  on his arm of the word resistance written in arabic. Along with his dedicated support of the Palestinians, who embodies many of the qualities that draw people to Palestine - his immense bravery - against the odds - when confronting incredible violence and his unwavering determination to stay human and loving in the face of inhumanity towards the very end. He remains a hero to the Palestinian people and many others across the globe.

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