6 June 2009
The funeral for Yousef Tzadik ‘Akil’ Srour was held in Ni’lin on Saturday, 6 June 2009. Srour was murdered by Israeli forces on Friday, 5 June 2009, during a demonstration against the construction of the Apartheid Wall on Ni’lin’s land. Akil frequently participated in the unarmed demonstrations against the construction of the Apartheid Wall. He was known as a leader amongst the demonstrators, always ready to help another. According to an eyewitness from the village, “The soldier was to our right and Akal was running to the left to help an injured man… when he was shot in the heart.”
Residents of Ni’lin, amongst others, drove behind the vehicle bringing Srour’s body back to Ni’lin. The procession reached Ni’lin from Ramallah around 12:30pm. People marched through the village, carrying Srour’s body to his home, the mosque and finally to the place of burial. Sour’s brother and other Ni’lin residents spoke of Akil’s kindness and dedication to his village after his burial.
To date, Israeli occupation forces have murdered five Palestinian residents and critically injured 1 international solidarity activist during unarmed demonstrations in Ni’lin.
- 29 July 2008: Ahmed Mousa (10) was shot in the forehead with 5.56mm caliber live ammunition and pronounced dead upon arrival at a Ramallah hospital.
- 30 July 2008: Yousef Amira (17) was shot in the head with two rubber coated steel bullets. He died in a Ramallah hospital 5 days later on 4 August 2008.
- 28 December 2008: Arafat Rateb Khawaje (22) was shot in the back with 5.56mm caliber live ammunition and pronounced dead upon arrival at a Ramallah hospital.
- 28 December 2008: Mohammed Khawaje (20) was shot in the head with 5.56mm caliber live ammunition. He died in a Ramallah hospital 3 days later on 31 December 2008.
- 13 March 2009: Tristan Anderson (37), an American citizen, was shot in the head with a high velocity tear gas projectile. He is currently at Tel Hashomer hospital with an unknown
- 5 June 2009: Yousef Akil Srour (36) was shot in the chest with 0.22 caliber live ammunition and pronounced dead upon arrival at a Ramallah hospital.
In total, 35 people have been shot by Israeli forces with live ammunition: 7 were shot with 5.56mm caliber live ammunition and 28 were shot with 0.22 caliber live ammunition.
Since May 2008, residents of Ni’lin have been organizing and participating in unarmed demonstrations against construction of the Apartheid Wall. Despite being deemed illegal by the International Court of Justice in 2004, the Occupation continues to build the Wall, further annexing Palestinian land.
Ni’lin will lose approximately 2,500 dunums of agricultural land when construction of the Wall is completed. Ni’lin consisted of 57,000 dunums in 1948, was reduced to 33,000 dunums in 1967, is currently 10,000 dunums and will be 7,500 dunums after completion of the Wall.
Additionally, a tunnel for Palestinians is being built underneath road 446. This tunnel will allow for the closure of the road to Palestinian vehicles, turning road 446 into an Israeli-only road. Ni’lin will be effectively split into 2 parts (upper Ni’lin and lower Ni’lin), as road 446 runs between the village. The tunnel is designed to give Israeli occupation forces control of movement over Ni’lin residents, as it can be blocked with a single military vehicle.