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Palestinian national dish fuels Al-Aqsa protests

Maqluba, the beloved Palestinian dish, has become a tradition of the protests in Jerusalem and elsewhere, reinforcing Palestinian community and solidarity.
A Palestinian woman prepares maqlouba at her home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber August 21, 2017. Picture taken August 21, 2017. REUTERS/Ammar Awad - RC1900F2C630
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While hundreds of demonstrators shouted slogans on Dec. 11 against US President Donald Trump in front of the Damascus Gate, one of the main entrances to Al-Aqsa, Khadija Khweis and her friend Hanadi al-Halawani were flipping pots of maqluba to serve to the protesters. In the last 12 months, this traditional food, also called the “dish of victory,” has become a part of the Palestinian protests.

Every Sunday throughout December, when people of Jerusalem held demonstrations to protest Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, they would bring large pots of maqluba, which literally means “upside down” in Arabic, and eat it under the eyes of the Israeli police. The flipping of the pots as the cooks shouted “Allahu Akbar” became a ritual, and the dish also came to be called by both the Palestinians and the Israelis as the “dish of spite.”

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