Wednesday May 15 2013, hundreds of Palestinians marched in Jaffa marking the 65th anniversary of the Nakba of 1948, affirming that the Palestinians are determined to achieve their full and legitimate right in the historic land of Palestine.The Jaffa Youth Movement, that organized the activities, stated that the Palestinians will not forget their land, their memories of what have been stolen from them, and will never forget those who have been forcibly uprooted from their homes, towns and lands.
The movement said that the Palestinians, wherever they are, have the legitimate internationally guaranteed Right of Return to their homeland, and will remain steadfast until achieving their rights.
Of the 11.4 million Palestinians worldwide, 66% are forcible displaced, (refugees and internally displaced people) and over half live in the Shatat (forced exile). Instead of an event relegated to history, the Nakba continues into its 65th year – the central source for the annual increase of these displacement statistics, the BADIL – Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights has reported.
‘In 1948, 1.4 million Palestinians lived in 1,300 Palestinian towns and villages in historic Palestine. The Israelis controlled 774 towns and villages and destroyed 531 Palestinian towns and villages during the Nakba. More than 800,000 of the population were driven out of their homeland to the West Bank and Gaza Strip, neighboring Arab countries and other countries of the world’, Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) said Tuesday.
While statistical data show that refugees constitute 44.2% of the total Palestinian population in Palestine, records by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) showed that there were 5.3 million registered Palestinian refugees by mid-2013, constituting 45.7% of the total Palestinian population worldwide, said the PCBS.
It said 59% of the refugees live in Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, 17% in the West Bank and 24% in Gaza Strip.
About 29% of registered refugees live in 58 refugee camps, of which 10 are in Jordan, nine in Syria, 12 in Lebanon, 19 in the West Bank, and eight in Gaza Strip.
These estimates also do not include Palestinians who were displaced between 1949 and the 1967 war and do not include the non-refugees who left or were forced to leave as a result of the war in 1967.