On Friday, October 19, approximately 100 human rights activists from different backgrounds converged at Um Salamona in the West Bank today to protest against the building of the segregation wall. Internationals, Palestinians and also Israelis, who are against the Occupation and construction of the Segregation Wall, all came together this morning to express their dissatisfaction with the wall under construction in this area. Over 60 percent of the land belonging to Palestinian farmers will be confiscated and sealed off on the other side of the concrete barrier.
Many NGO’s and human rights groups from all backgrounds and faiths and all ages joined hands in solidarity with the local Palestinians to peacefully protest against the wall. The demonstration was closely watched by a large contingent of Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) soldiers as well as the Israeli Police. Tempers flared a little as some of the soldiers attempted to exert their assumed authority resulting in some jostling and pushing of the protesters and media folk. Nobody was injured and the protest continued peacefully and without event once the situation had simmered.
“So today we are here to demonstrate against the Wall, to say to them and all over the world that this is the occupation and we are here suffering from the wall, the separation wall, which is stealing our land. I hope that one day we will succeed and we will recover our land with these non violent activities, and you will recognize today, how much the soldiers are violent, and I don’t know what is the use of violence. We are here on a peaceful demonstration. As you see we have friends from Israel, we have international friends, we are here Palestinians to say Down to the Wall. The wall which shows clearly the Israelis are against Peace, because Peace and trust is not made by barriers and stealing land,” says a local Palestinian.
The Wall currently under construction will traverse through the land of many local Palestinians, isolating them both from their farm lands and from the outside world. Israel claims the wall is being built as a security measure to protect its citizens. On the far end of the proposed wall is the illegal Jewish settlement of Efrat. The wall has been declared illegal by the International Court of Justice and is dubbed by many as “The Apartheid Wall.” An Israeli advocacy group has found that 39 percent of the land used by Jewish settlements in the West Bank is private Palestinian property, which the organization contends is a violation of international law.