04/16/19 | International Solidarity Movement | al-Khalil Team
This week marks the 8th anniversary of the death of Vittorio Arrigoni, an Italian journalist and activist working with the International Solidarity Movement, in Gaza.
On April 16th, 2011, when Arrigoni was 36 years old, his body was found in Gaza city, only a few hours after â€śThe Brigade of the Gallant Companion of the Prophet Mohammad bin Muslimaâ€ť, a Salafist group operating in Gaza, released the video where he was blindfolded and wounded. His alleged murderers were arrested and sentenced to 15 years after appealing their sentences.
Vittorio Arrigoni spent three years inside Gaza, working with peoples whose lives were affected by the blockade of the area. He witnessed and documented the effects of the Israeli blockade and the continuous human rights abuse, in the area. He was a committed ISM activist which also made him a target for arrest and harassment by Israeli forces, as it led him to a number of different demonstrations and protests around Gaza.
After breaking the blockade in 2008, Arrigoni described that moment as being one of the happiest of his life, as â€śIt became clear, not only to the world, but Palestinians also, that there are people who are willing to spend their lives to come and hug their brothers here in Gaza.â€ť.
On the 8th anniversary of his passing, when Gaza remains besieged by the occupation, we still remember Vittorio through his words and actions, and hope to continue our work through the example that he set for us.
â€śWe must remain human, even in the most difficult times â€¦Because, despite everything, there must always be humanity within us. We have to bring it to others.â€ť
4th February, 1975 â€“ 15th April, 2011
(edited for the IMEMC by c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g)
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Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip, and continues into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.