Saturday, June 25, 2005

Palestine-Israel, Bil'in, The daily struggle continue - reports on Wednsday and Friday actions 25 Jun

The persistent struggle against the fence at Bil'in collect momentum. Friday action showed another sample of creativity. See the pictures at:
The village committee of struggle against the fence who persist in nonviolent struggle, using various sorts of creative approaches, succeed to keep the media interested, and time after time confuse for a while and astonish even the Israeli forces of suppression when they get early mornings surprises. Friday morning, around 06:00, a symbolic, but massive cage was erected on the route of the fence in building which robe huge size of the village lands. The metal cage was of 3X3 meter size, surrounded with barbed wire fence, within it 4 Palestinians (3 of them women), 3 Israelis* 3 international activists... and one goat. On the cage were hanged banners: "The darkness must end, The handcuffs must be broken". Other people converged around them.

After a short time, the army force arrived. After few minutes of bewilderment the commanders got together, and regained their position that no matter what is the message or the subjective experience of the villagers or what way the choose to struggle - the only thing that count is that all the area is a closed military zone. Thus, the instructions were simple: "all the people are trespassing". "The Palestinians who surrounded the cage are to be dispersed quickly". "Use all means needed, Palestinian who dare throw a stone you down his hand". "These locked themselves in the cage will be arrested".

Within a short while the commander with Zionist inspiration got diligent: sent soldiers to shoot tear gas and shock grenades in the direction of the not far away village of Bil'in. A massive bulldozer was used to destroy the cage.

The three palestinian women (and the goat) went out of the destroyed cage without resisting and were not arrested. The other activists resisted and were taken out by force. After few hours of detention at the site, the detainees taken to Givat Ze'ev police station and were arrested there. The Palestinian was released after deposition of the equivalent of 440.- US dollars bail till his trial. The Israelis and international released on condition they will not approach the fence for the usual 10 to 15 days. So it is when you are a Palestinian under the Israeli occupation - criminal just for living on the land.

Originally by Nurit Translated for ainfos

=================== FRIDAY ===============

At noon there was the usual Friday demonstration, suppressed as usual, with moderate mass of arrest's - 12 Israelis and three internationals. At the evening the Bil'in villagers dismantled a symbolic 50 meter of the concrete structure base of the fence.

"Today too a march started from the center of the village towards the route of the fence in building, that rob most of the lands of the village. 150 Palestinians, Israelis* (about 30), and few internationals took part in it. [The Bil'in village is a small one with only about 1600 inhabitants.]

Today message was focused on the objection to the damage of that project to the nature and environment. The demonstrator carried a "presentation" with pictures of pastoral view covered with barbed wire, with the header of: "The fence destroy every thing that is beautiful". In addition, the demonstrators carried placard with the famous drawing "The scream" of Munk, as protest against the new weapon used by the army to disperse demonstrators at Bil'in [as a testing ground]. The new gadget nick named "The Scream" is a huge loud speaker that emit a frequency that can cause head aches and belly aches. (Its use was forbidden in US.) [However, as it is useless when people put ear plugs... and as last time they tried it in Bil'in people were prepared, last Friday the army did not try it on us any more.]

The army, its brutality towards nonviolent demonstrations became a routine, put a barbed wire line that block the road near the last building of the village (500 meters from the route of the fence where no work is done there at Fridays).

When we arrived there the commander declared that any one who will touch the wire will be shot at. He also declared it is closed military zone forbidden for Israelis who must go away immediately... and any way the allotted time to the demo is only 10 minutes.

After about 10 minutes in which there was a stand still, with no one of the Youngsters throwing stones, the barbed wire was disposed of and we started to advance very slowly... and the army and border police responded as they "promised".

The Israeli forces stormed us shooting tear gas canister, shock grenades, new [experimental] rubber foam bullets and regular rubber coated bullets.

[It seems Bil'in Friday demonstrations are a favorite testing ground for the new weapons, and they do not make any more real efforts to stop the Israelis from coming to the Bil'in demos.]

During their assault, they arrested every Israeli they discerned.. [refraining from arresting the older ones of us who had some white hairs. One of us the oldies was detained by mistake, and was surprised when the arresting officer just "deserted him in the middle of the road..."]

After they finished dispersed the demonstration and arresting the outsiders, the usual attrition war between 40 of the village stone throwing youngsters and the Israeli forces.

Three of the demonstrators were injured by rubber coated metal bullets.

The 12 Israelis and 3 international were released after very short interrogation at the Givat Ze'ev police station.

Few hours after the demo inhabitants of the village dismantled about 50 meters of the concrete structure on the route of the fence on which the fence is supposed to be erected.

As the army do lately frequently, and more so after the harming of the fence, it is most probable the army will intensify the nightly harassment in the village.

Israelis presence is most needed [as it restrain the harassment a bit].

Interested can contact 972-(0)52-3928592

=================MEDIA =========================
Israeli news agency reports:
About 100 activists of the left and Palestinians demonstrated near the separation fence near the village Bil'in - West of Ramalla.

The electronic media reports: Bil'in: according to the anarchists claim, 10 Israelis were arrested.
Activists of the left who participated in the demonstration today told Nana news that the army detained 10 of the demonstrators. The demonstrators claim it was nonviolent demonstration in which participated 150 people, and the stone throwing started only after the army open fire on them with means for dispersing demonstrations.

The army spokesperson deny that claim.....

Bil'in, Border police person was lightly injured from stone throwing during dispersing a demonstration against the separation fence at Bil'in - so says the army spokesperson.

Activists of the left dismantled 50 meter of the separation fence which pass in the village area, between Ramalla and Modi'in.

In the website of the Israeli daily Jerusalem post:

Jun. 24, 2005 15:44 | Updated Jun. 24, 2005 18:03 7 wounded in Bil'in anti-fence rally

Border Police use teargas to disperse a group of Palestinian, Israeli and foreign demonstrators during a protest against the construction of the security fence near the village of Bill's Photo: AP [File]

Security fence
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski

A border policeman and at least six demonstrators were lightly wounded Friday during a protest of some 200 Palestinians, Israelis and international activists against the West Bank security fence in the village of Bil'in, east of Modi'in.

According to the police, 12 Israeli demonstrators and three foreigners were arrested during the demonstration and taken to the Givat Ze'ev station for investigation. The arrests came after the demonstration had turned violent and security forces declared the area a closed military zone.

Bil'in has been the site of nearly weekly demonstrations by groups opposed to the construction of the fence.

Yonatan Pollak, a member of Anarchists Against the Wall, told The Jerusalem Post that security forces fired rubber bullets at the demonstrators, wounding several Palestinians, one Israeli and one foreign activist.

Pollak said the Israeli demonstrator "was wounded in his back from the barbed wire and from being dragged during his arrest."

The IDF described the protest as a violent demonstration, during which security forces were pelted with stones, resulting in the wounding of one policeman. Security forces were forced to disperse the demonstrators with tear gas and rubber bullets, according to the army.

Pollak told the Post that the demonstration was intended to protest "wall construction on the village's land and the blueprints of a new settlement to be constructed there."

Once the demonstration began, Pollak said, the army erected a barbed-wire fence and declared the area a closed military zone. "Whenever there's a demonstration involving Israelis and Palestinians the army automatically declares a closed military zone, using its authority to block peaceful demonstrations, which is obviously not what it was meant for."

Demonstrators also said that the army gave the protestors 10 minutes to disperse. Pollak said that when the allotted time passed, soldiers charged at the demonstrators, at which point the demonstration turned violent.

According to Pollak, members of Hamas who are residents of Bil'in also participated in the demonstration. "Every demonstration includes members of Hamas from the village. High personages in the organization have been there previously, but did not participate in today's protest," he said.

Earlier this month, head of Hamas in the West Bank, Hassan Youssef, participated in the joint Israeli-Palestinian demonstration against the construction of the fence in Bil'in. Youssef told the Post at the time that he felt comfortable joining a protest that included Israeli demonstrators, and that he would be willing to join hands "with anyone who speaks out against the occupation," including Israelis.

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