Even as tensions erupted between Israel and Palestine, Indian Twitter users responded by trending the hashtags #IndiaStandsWithIsrael and #IndiaStandsWithPalestine to align with their respective causes.
Over the course of May 9 and 10, more than a lakh tweets – specifically 1,11,783 – were generated, cumulatively supporting both factions.
The epicentre of the unrest between the Palestinians and Israeli law enforcement is occurring at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, the third holiest site in Islam, over Israel’s plan to evict residents of an Arab neighbourhood in eastern Jerusalem and other properties. The compound is also considered to be the holiest site in Judaism.
More than 270 Palestinians were injured on Monday due to the clashes during the tail-end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Nine Israeli law enforcement personnel were also injured, in what has been a clash of tear gas and stun grenades being met with stone pelting. European powers have called on Israel to halt its settlement expansion plans.
The ramifications of these events is felt online in India too, with support for both factions coming from traditionally partisan bases. While supporters of the Indian government tend to display a favourable view of the Israeli action against protestors citing the latter’s right to self-defence, opponents of the Indian government have given a rallying call to shed light on the Palestinian cause of self-determination.
Here’s how both these tweets have performed.
While this tweet has been around since July 2014, it has been used vigorously over the course of the last two days, generating 35,708 tweets.
It had trended modestly on May 8, with only 233 tweets but exploded since then.
As the trend suggests, users of this trend are extending support to Israeli action, while also extolling the friendship between India and Israel.
The whole of india is with you 🇮🇳#हमारा_दोस्त_इजराइल “INDIA” And “ISRAEL” United Against Terrorism ..!!🇮🇱🇮🇳 #IndiaStandsWithIsrael pic.twitter.com/tpiPiui9RA
Further, this trend is being used by Israeli diplomats in India to thank Indian users of Twitter for their support.
Thank you @AskAnshul . I’m proud that #IndiaStandsWithIsrael 🇮🇱🇮🇳 https://t.co/tyB6fOZebD
A Hindi version of this trend, #हमारा_दोस्त_इजराइल has also trended, though not at this scale, with 2,854 tweets over the course of the last two days.
Also Read: WB Polls: Postcard News Shares Fake Graphic On Voting Patterns
This tweet has trended more than its Israeli-supporting counterpart, trending 76,077 tweets since May 8, when this hashtag was initiated.
This tweet largely expresses solidarity with the Palestinian cause, which has been a decades-old complex struggle.
The Soul of India is with Palestinians🇵🇸♥️🇮🇳#IndiaStandsWithPalestine #𝑷𝒂𝒍𝒆𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒆𝑾𝒊𝒍𝒍𝑩𝒆𝑭𝒓𝒆𝒆🇵🇸#𝑫𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒉𝑻𝒐𝑶𝒄𝒄𝒖𝒑𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏 pic.twitter.com/7dQgUVVRyI
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