FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
This Friday, the Palestinian villages of Bil’in and Shofat refugee camp, near Jerusalem, will all hold non-violent demonstrations against the Israeli occupation. Beit Omar will hold their demonstration on Saturday, not Friday as stated in a previous release. In Bil’in the demonstration is against the apartheid barrier, in Beit Omar against an Israelis only-road, and in Shofat camp against restrictions on freedom of religious worship.
In Bil’in, the brutality of the Israeli soldiers in last weeks demonstration has not stopped the Popular Committee Against the Wall and Settlements from planning another non-violent demonstration for this Friday, May 19, 2006. Once again Israeli and international peace activists will come to show their support for the people of Bil’in. The demonstration will try to draw attention to the illegal settlements and their continuous development, a reality that their lawyer, Michael Sfard, is also trying to draw out in their court case.
The route of the wall in Bil’in is designed to annex the settlement of Modi’in Elite and it’s outpost, Matityahu Mizrah, to Israel along with the land belonging to Bil’in so that these illegal settlements can continue to grow. Bil’in village council has filed three petitions to the Israeli High Court to remove the wall from their lands, stop the construction of Matityahu East, and annul the procedures through which the State took their lands unlawfully 15 years ago.
In the last hearing, which took place May 14, 2006, the Bil’in village council’s lawyer, Michael Sfard, argued that the wall is not designed to protect people, but rather to protect the investment of real estate sharks and to accommodate the expansion of settlements.
The court has not released any decisions and the people of Bil’in will continue to practice non-violence in these demonstrations in order to draw attention to their struggle.
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