BEIRUT (AFP) – Lebanese and Palestinian activists on Saturday marked the "catastrophe" of Israel's creation by setting a record for the world's largest keffiyeh, or Arab head-dress.
The 6,552-metre (21,496-foot) chain of scarves was laid out on the grounds of the Sport City Stadium in Beirut to mark what Arabs call the Naqba, the "catastrophe" of Israel's creation in 1948.
The feat, overseen by a Guinness World Records official, breaks a previous entry of a 2,932-metre (9,619-foot) scarf set in Spain in August 2009.
More than 100 volunteers placed the giant scarf to form the number 194, signifying the 1948 United Nations Resolution that grants Palestinians the right to return to their homes in Israeli-occupied land.
"A group of independent Palestinian and foreign activists got together to reach that record," said Jamal Kurdi, a member of the Campaign 194 group that organised the record-breaking event.
"On the anniversary of the Naqba we want to affirm that Resolution 194... calling for the return of Palestinians to their land must be implemented," he said.
A sign next to the giant keffiyeh, which was made with more than 6,500 scarves stitched together, read: "194. We will return."
Some 4,000 people marched in Gaza City on Saturday to mark the Naqba, in response to a joint appeal by Hamas and Fatah, the two principal Palestinian political parties that are normally at loggerheads with each other.
In the West Bank, sirens wailed through the Israeli-occupied territory as residents marked a minute's silence.
More than 760,000 Palestinians -- estimated today to number 4.7 million with their descendants -- were pushed into exile or driven out of their homes in the conflict that followed Israel's creation 62 years ago.
May has been a month of Guinness records for Lebanon, which has been locked in a food fight with Israel over the origin of some of the Middle East's most popular dishes.
Last weekend, chefs in Lebanon fired a 10-tonne (22,000 pounds) hummus broadside, breaking a previous Israeli record, followed by another entry for more than a half-tonne of falafels.
The chickpea dip and deep-fried vegetable patty are popular in many Arab countries and in Israel, but claimed by the Arabs as part of their cuisine.