FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A trio of demonstrations are planned for Friday in villages and cities around the West Bank. If the Israeli military’s history is any
indicator, violent response to the peaceful protests is expected.
I. PROTESTING THE “BARRIER” IN JENIN:
Israel’s illegal barrier near the northern West Bank town of Jenin consists of a patrolled labyrinth of chain fences. At noon Friday, residents of the town will be joined by several organizations and foreign activists as they head toward the barrier which cuts across agricultural land to protest the lack of access to their own territory.
People will gather at the city center of Jenin at 10 a.m. to travel to the nearby village of Zububa, which is close to the green line, the Israeli/Palestinian border that was stipulated in 1967. At noon, the demonstration will begin with a prayer in the agricultural fields near the fence. Following that, participants will march toward the fence to display banners and Palestinian flags. In the past, protesters approaching the fence have met with a violent response from Israeli soldiers.
II. REMOVING ROADBLOCKS ON THE ROAD TO ASIRA:
Peace activists are planning to remove roadblocks from the road directly connecting Nablus to the small farming village of Asira on Friday. The road has been blocked since the start of the Palestinian uprising against the occupation. The Popular Committee of Asira has requested the presence of Israeli peace activists.
The Israeli military has been paying close attention to the roadway, and anyone venturing near is immediately subjected to response from Israeli soldiers.
The people of Asira are prevented from farming even their land that has not been confiscated by Israel. The road from the village to the land has been blocked with an earth mound by the Israeli army. Five families live outside of this block and are unable to reach their homes by vehicle. Israeli army jeeps regularly patrol the area and prevent people from accessing their land. Students, workers and the sick are all adversely affected. Even ambulances are not allowed a quick passage to the village.
Last Friday, as villagers demonstrated to demand their freedom of movement, the army cracked down on the protest with an assault that progressed from concussion grenades and teargas, to rubber bullets and live ammunition. The Army also invaded the village and confiscated cameras and film from demonstrators.
Seven Israeli activists were arrested on the way to the village, and international activists and the press were detained on their way from Nablus.
Contact: Mohammed Ayyesh (ISM Nablus) at 052-222-3374 or 054-621-8759
III. SURPRISE THEME FOR BIL’IN PROTEST AGAINST THE “BARRIER”:
A nonviolent protest against the building of the illegal separation barrier near Bil’in is set for Friday at 1 p.m.
Residents of Bil’in will be joined by Israeli and International peace activists in the latest of a series of creative protests against the
building of the illegal barrier that has occurred near Bil’in.
The protests are known for their nonviolence and dramatic themes. Last Friday, a group of villagers wore masks of U.S. President George W. Bush and Condoleeza Rice. This Friday’s theme has not been announced.