Friday, March 17, 2006

Palestine-Israel, The joint struggle against the separation fence continue - Bil'in, Beit-Sira 17-03-06

The demonstrations in Bil'in were again headed by creative theme. The previous Friday had a huge coffin... this week we had a model of the wall in metal on which various graphite were inscribed. This model was carried in the front of the march of about 150 demonstrators and media - including about 20 Israelis of the anarchists against the wall initiative (other 10 were gone to the Beit Sira demo) and about 10 internationals. We started as usually at noon from the center of village with a 20 minutes march of chanting till we arrived at the gate of the fence route at the location where it cut the road to the western lands of the village. There, the state forces blocked our way. Due to the few meter wide metal model of the wall in our front, the state forces had a problem. they could not attack us so easily or destroy the creative theme.

They trough several shock grenade that succeeded to deter only part of the people on the front. They could not use tear gas as they were too near to us. heating people wits batons was not easily done too as the metal wall protected most of our people. One comrade was hit by a baton on the head so hard that the ambulance had to take him away, but one of the state force shields was broken and taken for a while as a trophy too till a special group of state force were delegated to bring it back.

After the first power struggle of push and pull, the metal wall was static few meters from the fence but a group of our people were allowed to bang with stones on the rails of the metal gate with the sweet "music" of defiance of the state force who usually succeeded in the past to prevent us from.

During the hours of the small intensity confrontation one Israeli was detained and took to the Givat Zeev police station and released only few hours later.

As in most other Friday demonstrations in Bil'in, after the first confrontation many youngsters disperse in the adjacent olive orchards and for hours engage in parallel to the main nonviolent demonstration with stone throwing the state forces who retaliate with tear gas and rubber coated bullets.

Following this week hearing of the highest court of "justice" on the case of Bil'in which was sympathetic in a way to the struggle against the route of the fence there the media started to report again widely on the Friday demos against the separation fence. In the public radio news broadcast they reported that in this Friday demos ten demonstrators were injured and few state force persons too.

Beit-Sira - the new and hot location of joint struggle which was witnessing harsh repression by the Israeli state forces need a special report:

"In terms of organization, the demonstration was a marked improvement over last week. An artistic theme was picked, dignitaries were invited and many people attended. My own (possibly misinformed) impression was that the popular committee was working well as a group.

About 500 people marched on the route of the wall which is within 20 meters of the last houses of Macabim. It is possible that some of the people from Macabim recognized some of the people from Beit Sira. Many people from Beit Sira know people from macabim and vice versa.
However, not a single person from Macabim spoke out in protest over the confiscation of the village lands in the last two years since the route of the wall was proposed between Beit Sira and Macabim. Some people from Macabim (probably the great majority) files a court petition to move the wall further from Macabim and by that take away more of Beit Sira's land.

The march met a line of soldiers and after the dignitaries finished speaking at the refusal of the soldiers to allow the march to continue forward the march ended and a confrontation of stones vs rubber bullets and tear gas began. The Young people of the village have little patience for the soldiers who they meet twice every week day on their way to school and back. The soldiers harass them as they pass under the 443 road on their way to the high school near Safa.

Four people were injured by rubber bullets. The injuries were to the legs and backs.

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