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Qalandiya: Checkpoint closure anger surfaces

International Solidarity Movement

16 March 2010

Approximately 200 residents of Qalandiya gathered today to protest the continued closure of the checkpoint in their city, allowing them access to Israel.

Israeli military attempted to suppress the protest by invading and occupying a Palestinian home, and firing tear gas and rubber bullets down a roof into rush hour traffic below. In the densely packed street, several demonstrators were hit with tear gas canisters that were fired directly at them, as well as numerous passing vehicles. One driver suffered from tear gas inhalation after a canister smashed through the back windscreen their car.

On Friday 5th March, Israeli soldiers in An Nabi Saleh used a similar tactic of firing directly down onto a demonstration from the roofs of houses. This led to the near fatal shooting of a fourteen-year-old boy, after which it had been hoped cease to use this dangerous tactic.

The Demonstration today coincided with a number of other protest around East Jerusalem and the West Bank, responding to the blanket closure of the West Bank, and recent event Al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem.