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Students from Tarneit Senior High School Join Melbourne Rally for Free Palestine

Tarneit Senior Palestine Protest

Young Wyndham Activists Join Over a Thousand Melbourne Students in Demanding an End to the Conflict in Gaza

In a powerful display of solidarity, over a thousand students from various Melbourne schools, including Tarneit Senior High School, gathered at the iconic Flinders Street Station on Thursday afternoon for the Free Palestine rally. The event rapidly gained momentum as the passionate students marched through the streets of the Central Business District, voicing their demands for an end to the conflict in Gaza.

Chants of “Free, Free Palestine” and “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” resonated as the crowd occupied the steps of Flinders Street Station. The students fervently called for the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza and the West Bank, an end to the war on Gaza, and a cessation of military aid from Australia to Israel.

Among the participating schools with Tarneit Senior were Brighton Secondary, Brunswick Secondary College, Princes Hill Secondary College, and Thornbury High. The demonstration, while impassioned, maintained a peaceful demeanour. However, its scale surpassed the confines of Flinders Street Station, spilling onto Melbourne’s streets and causing temporary traffic disruptions as the crowd marched down Swanston Street.

Emotional speeches punctuated the event, with students expressing their concerns about the situation in Gaza. One speaker labelled the Israeli occupation and bombardment of Gaza as “murder in cold blood,” emphasizing the urgency of the cause. Another student, fighting back tears, decried the “crimes against humanity carried out against the Palestinians” and criticized the government’s response to the conflict.

Flags bearing the Palestinian colours and signs demanding a free Palestine, some marked with questions like “How many?” written in fake blood, were prominently displayed in the crowd. Despite criticism from politicians, including Victorian Premier Jacinta Allan and Opposition Leader John Pesutto, who urged students to remain in school, the rally received support from Greens education spokesperson Senator Penny Allman-Payne.

“The right to protest is an essential part of living in a democracy,” Senator Allman-Payne asserted. “It’s clear that Australian school students have seen through the platitudes. They know that it is morally indefensible to refuse to call for a ceasefire in Gaza. If the government wants kids to stay in the classroom, the solution is simple: do your job.”

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