by Palestine Solidarity Project, October 26th
October 23, 2006, members of the Palestine Solidarity Project joined with Israeli peace groups Ta’ayush and Anarchists Againt The Wall to challenge the validity of the illegally created road blocks that have been forced upon many Palestinian villages, severely limiting their freedom of movement and access to essentials such as schools, hospitals, and economic centers.
They began their work in the village of Al-Jab’a where they had tried several times to remove a roadblock blocking the path from Surif to Al-Jab’a. As they waited for more demonstrators to join them, an Israeli military hummer pulled up and was parked in front of the roadblock. Fearing an early confrontation here might influence the success of their other planned actions, the activists proceeded to move onto the village of Zif.
Once in Zif, Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists immediately moved to attach ropes to the large cement blocks. Upon realizing the demonstrators’ intentions, nearby Palestinians quickly joined them and took their spots on the rope. They pulled and pushed together until finally they were able to remove 2 blocks. The army did not see the activists nor did they come to interfere in the action. The activists returned to the cars and moved on to the village of Beit Ommar, leaving the Palestinians of Zif with a semi-open road and with more ease in transportation.
When the activists arrived in Beit Ommar they again began to attach the ropes to the blocks. This would be PSP’s second attempt at opening this road. Palestinians from Beit Ommar, along with the traveling international and Israeli activists quickly removed 2 more concrete blocks from the road. As they were finishing with the second stone, the army arrived. During the first attempt to open this roadblock, the army violently attacked demonstrators, causing several severe injuries. Because of this, the activists decided to disperse, as the road had already been successfully opened.
As of 2 days after the actions, both roads remain open.