Mahatma's grandson urges non-violence

Aug. 26, 2004 at 10:50 PM

RAMALLAH, West Bank, Aug. 26 (UPI) -- Arun Gandhi, grandson of Mohandas Gandhi who won India's freedom through his non-violence struggle, urges Palestinians to adopt the same tactic.

Speaking at a rally in the West Bank town of Ramallah, Arun Gandhi urged Palestinians to use peaceful means to resist the Israeli occupation, the BBC reported Thursday.

"Insist on your rights and demand your freedom peacefully," Gandhi said. He is set to observe a one day fast in support of Palestinian prisoners currently on hunger strike in Israeli jails.

After meeting Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Gandhi told a crowd of flag-waving Palestinians: "I know your day of freedom is near."

Arun Gandhi, who heads the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Non-Violence, is visiting the region to promote the idea of peaceful resistance.

Gandhi has also spoken against the barrier Israel is building in the West Bank.

He is also scheduled to visit the Israeli memorial to the holocaust, Yad Veshem.

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