‘Koi Hai? Letters to Palestine’ anthology unveils global solidarity

Letters to Palestine

DUBAI: In response to the ongoing tragedy in Palestine, ZUKA Books, a Pakistani publishing platform, spearheaded a remarkable project titled ‘Koi Hai? Letters to Palestine.’

Journalist Mehr F Husain, founder of ZUKA Books, issued an open call in December 2023 to bring together creatives from Dubai, England, Pakistan, and India to showcase global solidarity through the power of the written word.

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The anthology, a collaborative effort to stand for Palestine, incorporates various literary forms such as notes, essays, letters, poems, stories, illustrations, and translations of Palestinian poets’ works into regional languages. The book, designed by Minhaj Ahmed Rafi, aims to bear witness to the profound human tragedy that has unfolded in Palestine since October 4, 2023.

Husain explained the motivation behind the project, citing a video of a desperate Palestinian woman, the plea of journalist Motaz covering the genocide, and the historical resonance with artist Bedrich Fritta’s documentation of the Holocaust. The goal is to provide a platform for Palestinians to express their suffering, ensuring that their stories are not forgotten.

The anthology goes beyond geographical boundaries, featuring contributions that transcend linguistic and cultural barriers. Palestinian poetry finds eloquent translations into Urdu, Seraiki, and Persian, creating a rich mosaic that encapsulates the diverse voices of compassion.

Despite the devastating impact of the conflict on the cultural heritage of Gaza, ‘Koi Hai? Letters to Palestine’ serves as a poignant declaration and a heartfelt protest against the ravages of war. Husain emphasised that the project was not driven by commercial motives but was a pure act of solidarity, with all proceeds directed towards supporting the cause.

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Sabin Muzaffar, the owner of Ananke’s website and founder of the digital literature festival ‘Women In Literature,’ will make an e-version of the book available on her platform. Remarkably, the publisher noted that not a single submission expressed hate towards Jews or Judaism. The contributors approached the topic with gentleness and tenderness, upholding the message of humanity and respect for life for all.

‘Koi Hai? Letters to Palestine’ stands as a powerful testament to the global outpouring of compassion, transcending borders to shed light on the untold stories of the Palestinian people.

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