By/ Fedaa al-Qedra
The Ministry of Sport, Youth and Culture announced on 6th April,2014, at 9:30 am , the starting of the Palestinian Marathon from the legislative council yard in Gaza Strip.
The Palestinian Marathon is an annual road running event including races over 7km, 5km, and 3km distances, that took place in Gaza city streets.
About one thousands runners participated in the Marathon , challenging the Israeli occupation that prevent them from participating in Bethlehem Marathon which will take place on Friday April 11, 2014.
The start and the end point for the marathon is the legislative council square. The course went along al-Remal street through Omar al-Mokhtar street and the stretch ended in al-Shajaaiya U-turn where the runners to run the same way back towards the legislative council square.
Diab al-Masri,39, the Palestinian National Team coach said that they received an invitation from the Palestinian Athletic Union the Second Jerusalem Marathon which will take place in Bethlehem, but the Israeli occupation refused to give them entry permits, "we have the right to visit our occupied lands any time we want as well as commemorating the Palestinian National events."
He added " Palestinian athletes' in Gaza send ,by holding local marathon, a massage to the world, explaining to them the suffers of Palestinian people whom the Israeli occupation prevent them the freedom of movement.
Nazem Abu Jarad,39, a Palestinian runner to run 5km distance said that he participated in this race to gamble with these excitement moments and move away the worries of the life.
The child Amgad al-Sadeq,11,told ALRAY that he is happy in this competition, he love to run and play as other children in the world, adding Palestinian children have the right to live in save.
Dr. Ahmed Bahar the head of the Palestinian legislative council said " we mark this day and our eyes on Jerusalem and Palestine."
He added that sport create strong, vibrant generations that able to build and serve the community.
Bahar pointed out that these events reflect the intrest of the Ministry of Youth and Sport in developing the youth abilities and establishing a strong structure for the Palestinian society.
Speaking to youth, Bahar said " Palestinian government supports Gaza athletes till they achieve their goals. You are the hope of the nation, I ask God to mark the next sport day in Jerusalem."
Marking the Sport day , Mohamed al-Madhoun the Minister of Youth and Sport emphasized that sport represents a considerable part of Palestinian behaviors and lives.
Al-Madhoun pointed out that these events includes Laying the foundation stone of Palestinian Stadium which was destroyed completely in the last Israeli hostile against Gaza on November, 2012. It reflects the steadfastness of Palestinian people.
He added that the ministry works on discovering talents , developing the skills of Palestinian youth, and providing the proper facilities for them. The ministry keens to raise Sports in Palestine to the international level .