Release Carnival

I’m getting very behind both with posting my work on My London Diary and also with writing about it here.  I’m not entirely sure why this is, today I can blame the hot weather which has made it difficult to get down to anything, but before that we’ve hd rather a cold spell. In part I’ve been busy with other things, including getting a new book ready to go on Blurb, still a little way to go. Also I’ve had a few little computer problems – this machine is, like me, beginning to show its age.

So, back to Saturday 5 June and I was in Torrington Square in the middle of parts of the University of London in Holborn for an event which had been widely publicised as the ‘Release Carnival’ ,organised by students and members of SOAS Detainee Support calling for the immediate release of children from detention centres, those privately run jails where the UK Borders Agency likes to dump everyone it can.

My problem – and their problem too – was that a few days previously, Israeli commandos had boarded one of the convoy of ships heading for Gaza and opened fire on the more or less unarmed civilians on board, killing at least nine and wounding more than 30 others.  So many of those who might otherwise have attended ‘Release’ were lining up in Whitehall for a rally and march to the Israeli embassy.

I too was going to join this march and rally, but had stopped on the way for the Release event, which was starting an hour earlier. But unfortunately there didn’t seem to be a great deal happening while I was there, which was a shame, but I did take a few picture before I had to leave, and later got some appreciative comments.

© 2010, Peter Marshall

What was interesting was to find out a little about London’s Albanian community, which I had known absolutely nothing about before. London really is a great city because it has so many people in it from so many places around the world.  The group to which these children belong is called SHPRESA, and I and another photographer spent a while trying to think what these letters might stand for before I asked one of the women wearing a t-shirt with them on and found it was actually an Albanian word meaning ‘hope‘.

There are just a few more photographs on My London Diary, but we had to leave and jump on the tube to get down to Downing St for the Gaza rally before the Release event had really got going.

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