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Pakistan Bans New Year’s Eve Celebrations in Solidarity with Gaza

As a show of solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, the Pakistani government placed a ban on New Year's Eve celebrations.

Late Thursday, the Pakistani government declared a ban on New Year’s Eve celebrations as a demonstration of solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza. 

Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, in a televised address, urged the nation to “observe simplicity” in light of the situation in the Gaza Strip, emphasizing the need to forego all events related to New Year celebrations.

Rationale Behind the Ban:

The ban comes amid Israel’s extensive military actions in Gaza, responding to an attack by Palestinian militants on October 7. 

The conflict has resulted in significant destruction in the northern part of Gaza and a tragic loss of lives, particularly among women and children. 

Prime Minister Kakar cited the ongoing crisis as the primary reason for the decision to forgo New Year festivities.

Humanitarian Concerns:

Expressing deep sadness over the plight of the Palestinians, Kakar highlighted the distress of the entire Pakistani nation and the Muslim Ummah. 

The prime minister particularly condemned the “genocide of the oppressed Palestinians,” emphasizing the tragic impact on innocent children in Gaza and the West Bank.

Unusual New Year Scene in Pakistan:

Vibrant celebrations, including fireworks and aerial gunfire traditionally mark New Year’s Eve in Pakistan. 

However, this year, the government’s call for simplicity in observance is an exceptional departure from the usual festivities. The ban also coincides with a regular bank holiday on January 1.

Regional Solidarity – Sharjah’s Ban:

Notably, Sharjah, an emirate in the United Arab Emirates, joined Pakistan in solidarity. 

Sharjah police announced a ban on New Year’s Eve fireworks, expressing a “sincere expression of solidarity and humanitarian cooperation” with the people in Gaza. 

This move underscores the regional impact of the ongoing conflict and the interconnectedness of geopolitical events.

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