Friday, July 15, 2005

Palestine-Israel, Another joint demonstration in Bil'in - two waves 15 Jul

It started as usual Friday demonstration. About 150 people: Palestinians, 40 of Israelis (Against The Wall initiative and others from the coalition against the wall), and 30 internationals. We started with a 10 people within a structure symbolizing bridge, behind them few rows of people locking hands. We went on the road leading to the fence with slogans. When we reached the last houses of the village the barbed wire blocking the road and the state forces were waiting for us. First thing they declared the demonstration illegal... Than they added that was closed military zone for Israelis... And there was a stand steal for a while.

We declared it is nonviolent demo and no reason for them to attack. And they replied that as long as we do not make violation the let us stay there.

After a while we moved to the side of the road and advanced one meter beyond their red line, and still there was just physical blocking us. When we moved a gain one meter more they assaulted us physically and both destroyed our nice bridge and arrested a Palestinian activist who was in the structure. Two Israeli females and a Palestinian who tried to prevent the arrest were arrested too... And as 15 of us insisted not to go away - demanding the release of the 4 arrested they took by force the additional 15 of us - Israelis and internationals.

After dispersing the demonstration, as the youngsters still did not start to throw stones, a force of soldiers was sent to intrude the village to provoke them so they will define the demo as violent.

And the youngsters convinced not to start throwing stones till the demonstration was dispersed responded in kind...

While the soldiers confronting the youngsters, the police persons took us by cars to a location on the other side of the route of the fence, under the shade of an olive tree for a field procession - taking our pictures and identity details. All that time we told the police persons and the reserve soldiers who guarded us what we think on their activity.

After about two hours they released 15 of us and took the 4 arrested - two Palestinian and two Israelis to the near by police station. As the 15 of us were highly outnumbered our try to block the car failed.

So the state forces went away and we marched back to were about 50 demonstrators were waiting us and regrouped.

As the soldiers confronting the youngsters were not retreating fast enough, we started to march back to the route of the fence building... but all state forces gone - even the soldiers confronting the youngsters.

It was so ridiculous that even when a military car patrolled the deserted route was barraged by stones - they just passed twice on the route and gone....

So all of us just returned to the village and the people from out of the village went away.

It seems that only one or two of us were seriously suffered from the rough treatment of the state forces.

At the police station, the 4 arrested were accused for obstruction policeman and resisting arrest and the two palestinian even blamed for violence.. In spite of witnesses and video documentary showing the truth, based on a fabricated testimony the two Palestinians were taken to military jail to appear before a judge after the weekend, and the two Israelis released on bail and two weeks ban from returning to the region.

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