Palestinian City Honors US Airman Who Set Himself on Fire in Protest against Israeli Genocide

Palestinian City Honors US Airman Who Set Himself on Fire in Protest against Israeli Genocide

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The Palestinian city of Jericho honored Aaron Bushnell, a US Air Force member who died after self-immolating in protest against Israel's genocide in Gaza.

Bushnell set himself alight outside the Israeli embassy in Washington on February 25, declaring he would “no longer be complicit to genocide.” He livestreamed the incident, shouting “free Palestine” as he burned. Law enforcement officials extinguished the flames, but Bushnell succumbed to his injuries in hospital several hours later.

Now a city in Jericho has been named after him.

At a ceremony in the city unveiling the street sign, Mayor Abdul Karim Sidr stated that Bushnell had “sacrificed everything” for Palestinians, The Guardian reported. “We didn’t know him, and he didn’t know us. There were no social, economic or political ties between us. What we share is a love for freedom and a desire to stand against these attacks (on Gaza),” the mayor told a gathering on the Aaron Bushnell Road.

Jericho, a historic site in the West Bank and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities on Earth, has also named a square in honor of South Africa, following its government's legal action accusing Israel of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Pretoria has accused Israel of committing “systematic” acts of genocide in Gaza. The ICJ, which has yet to issue a final ruling, said in January that Israel must take steps to prevent genocide and improve humanitarian conditions for Gaza’s civilians.

“These names will focus the attention of both the locals and visitors,” the mayor of Jericho said, noting that the city was following a precedent set after the death of activist Rachel Corrie. A street in Ramallah was named after the American activist, who was killed by the Israeli army in 2003 after being run over by a bulldozer while trying to prevent the military from destroying homes in Gaza.

Since October 7, anti-Israel demonstrations have been held in major cities around the world following Israel's strikes on Gaza, which killed more than 31,000 people in the enclave.

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