The joint struggle continue and so is the declaration in public of the discontent of the state forces aroused by our participation in it. This Friday the anarchists against the wall initiative mobilized about 130 Israelis to the demonstrations at Bil'in, Jerusalem (Sheikh Jarrah), Ma'asara (south Bethlehem), Nabi Saleh (west of Ramalla), and Ni'ilin. Many of the participants in noon demos at Bil'in, Ma'asara, and Nabi Saleh continued to the late afternoon demo in Sheikh Jarrah. In spite of the increased threats in the media, the state repression was not at its height.
The National Committee to Resist the Wall in Beit Jala invites you to participate in its weekly demonstration to be held on Sunday April 18 at 9AM under the banner "Beit Jala will remain standing tall and proud as a mountain despite the wall and settlements."
Your participation provides support for the steadfastness of the people of Beit Jala.
The National Committee to Resist the Wall Beit Jala
Some 45 Israelis and over a dozen internationals joined a larger than usual weekly Palestinian demonstration against the wall in Bil'in. The demonstration commemorated a year since the killing of peaceful resistance poplar leader Bassem Abu Rahme by an Israeli soldier in a demonstration - a killing which Israeli authorities have recently announced will not be investigated. Among the participants were spotted some senior Fatah members, escorted by a Fatah youth marching band. After a string of speeches that commemorated Bassem and commended popular resistance the demonstrators marched to the wall and gathered at the gate. Within less than a minute the army covered the area with tear gas. The younger demonstrators tried to explain to the army that violence brings on counter violence, but the army's response was even more violent and escalated to rubber coated and live bullets. As the confrontation between the shabab and the soldiers moved north along the wall, the gas reached the demonstrators who remained farther back, and pushed them back into the village. Just after leaving the gas range, an ice cream car awaited the demonstrators.
You can watch the movie about the life of Bassem and the way he got killed.
Israel Puterman: Bil'in Friday 16.4.10 video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwZnVhhRjsU
David Ribb: Bil'in Friday 16.4.10 video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wz7_cZafq7k
JERUSALEM - Sheikh Jarrah
In Sheikh Jarrah some 400 people demonstrated against the ongoing policy of settlement building in the neighborhood.
At some point about 50 demonstrators took a walk around police barricades, and reached one of the evicted houses. Police quickly intervened against this breech of the unwritten law allowing only Jewish settlers into the neighborhood, and the demonstrators too were evicted from the premises. Several other attempts of police to push activists around from one place to the other were noted, but no arrests made.
The demonstration ended after two hours.
Israel Puterman video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vaqwtaAu_x4
After military forces invaded Ma'asara Thursday night, making threats to the leaders of the popular struggle once again, the weekly demonstration took place Friday noon and was bigger than usual due to the commemoration of the Palestinian Prisoners' Day. Twenty Israelis and internationals joined the 150 people strong Palestinian march, which included a massive drumming band of the Jerusalem Palestinian scout movement and the high Sheikh of the PA's Shri'a courts, Taisir Al-Tamimi.
Demonstrators marched through the village streets after the noon prayer, and as usual were stopped by soldiers who blocked the main road towards the stolen village lands. Two elderly women whose sons are held in Israeli prisons told their stories, and received medals of honor from Fatah and Al-Tamimi. Speeches were carried in Arabic, English and Hebrew, and attempts to speak to the soldiers in either of the above languages and explain to them about the situation of Palestinian prisoners failed.
The demonstration lasted an hour and a half, ending with the promise to return next week, as has been for three and a half years now.
The demonstration started at the center of the village just after the Friday noon prier. Palestinians, Internationals, and Israelis marched on the road leading to the main intersection in the built area. The area had still the stench from Israeli state forces spray on the previous Friday demo. From there, the participants marched through the fields to the main road leading to the village, which was already blocked by village youth using big stones and other available materials - to make the travel hard (to the Israeli troops).
Though unprovoked, the state forces started to shoot tear gas grenades on the demonstrators. Then they unmounted their military vehicles, dismantled the road blocks, and "conquered" the entrance to the village. From there, they shoot bullets coated with rubber, and tear gas canisters along the main street of the village.
In parallel to this confrontation, a small group of the village youth accompanied by village elders, members of the popular comity, and Israelis, marched through the fields to the well the colonialist settlers try to take complete control of. There too they encountered Israeli state forces that blocked their way.
At that stage, a kind of negotiations started between the village elders and the commanding officer. As result, he agreed to retreat his force from the village on condition that no stones will be thrown... and they retreated towards a near by protected stronghold. Afterwards, the demonstration - that was less confrontational than previous ones became even more moderate and gradually the demonstration dispersed.
In Ni'ilin, some 50 demonstrators gathered in the village fields and marched to the route of the wall after the Friday prayer. The march reached the wall, and confrontations erupted between the village youth and the soldiers who fired tear gas from behind the wall. The confrontations continued for several hours, as the confrontations switched locations along the wall.
Ni'ilin, April 16 2010 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipy4oSJJ0q8