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1 Jan, 2009 17:34

Gaza's neighbors show their support

People across the Middle East are showing their support for Gaza and have begun protesting against the Israeli attacks in the region.

In the Iranian capital Tehran, as well as in other Iranian cities, hardline religious students held a march against the Israeli offensive.

They filled the former U.S. embassy in Tehran and burned posters of U.S., Israeli, Egyptian and Saudi leaders.

A series of anti-Israeli actions follow a religious decree by Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, which stated that anyone killed while defending Palestinians in Gaza would be considered a martyr.

In Ramallah hundreds marched through the streets in support of their fellow Palestinians.

The marchers called on Israel to end the attacks on Gaza.

There's been strong support in the Fatah-run Palestinian territories for the citizens of Gaza – even though rivalling Hamas is the main political faction in Gaza.

Pro-Gaza demonstrators gathered outside the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem for a candlelight vigil.

They placed hundreds of candles on the ground to spell out the word “Gaza” in English and Arabic.

The protestors said they wanted to highlight the difference in the way the New Year was being marked in Gaza and the outside world.