The intimidation of Palestinians who object to their land being confiscated and the loss of income as a result. So what happens. The weekly demonstration and marches to the wall accompanied by international supporters is well documented as they encounter sound-bombs, tear gas, foul-smelling water and sometimes live rounds. Now the army are going into Bil’in and kidnapping young people. A peace process? Not in sight – a clear snub to President Obama in spite of his careful overtures to Israel.
Here are some reports:
1-Weekly Demonstration at Bil’in on July 17, 2009
Some 400 demonstrators, including international and Israeli activists joined today’s peaceful demonstration against the Apartheid Wall. A group of drummers from the PFLP Ramallah lead into this demonstration. The protesters proceeded peacefully toward the Wall where they were soon met with a first series of tear gas and sound bombs. The people did not disperse but stayed close to the Wall chanting slogans. One international activist in the wheel chair was hit directly in the shoulder and the leg by tear gas, which slightly burned his clothes. He was not injured, however.
Like last week, the “bad smell” water was sprayed again but the group did not disperse in spite of it. Chanting continued while everyone was dodging the tear gas and “bad smell” water. The demonstrators remained gathered close to the wall for some 90 minutes while the occupation forces shot tear gas from two directions. Then the everyone returned back to the village. No one was injured or arrested today.
2-Army Invades Bil’in Again-One arrested, One injured.
On July 17 at 2am, jeeps full of soldiers invaded the village of Bil’in. After arresting Muhammed abde al fatah burnat (age 21) the soldiers tried removing him by foot to the military outpost. International and Palestinian activists blocked the path of the army units, demanding his immediate release. The army responded by hitting activists with their rifles, throwing percussion grenades, and spraying chemicals in activists’ faces. Additional army units arrived to dislodge the activists from the path of the arrested boy. These soldiers began chasing activists and trying to arrest them.
In the process of being chased, one of the Palestinian activists was injured. He suffered a deep gash on his leg that may require stitches and some minor lacerations on one of his arms.
The village of Bil’in has had 60 percent of its farmland confiscated by the apartheid wall and has had weekly demonstrations for the last 5 years. Recently, it has been under constant raids from the army and over 15 boys have been arrested in the last three weeks.
Bil’in, a village of some 1,600 inhabitants located northwest of Ramallah, has been subject to repeated night raids and arrests of villagers for the past month. Since the construction of the Apartheid Wall in 2004, Bil’in has been holding weekly demonstrations against this Wall. The resistance to the military occupation is very strong in this village. Consequently, arrests of villagers involved are very frequent. These arrests occur in various ways, i.e. at Israel’s borders when Palestinians attempt to travel, or locally in Bil’in at the Apartheid Wall, as well as during night invasions. In recent weeks, the occupation forces conducted night raids of houses in the village up to three times a week in the wake of the weekly demonstrations. During these operations, eight villagers and one international activist have been kidnapped. They are still in detention. The list of wanted Palestinians is steadily growing.
The occupation forces are constantly changing their strategy to suppress the resistance in Bil’in. On Tuesday, July 14, 2009, a flying checkpoint was erected between Bil’in and Safa, operating for some 2 hours. Arrests at Israel’s border to neighboring Jordan, in particular, are increasing. At last week’s demonstration on July 10, 2009, the “bad smell” water (Durban) was used to disperse the demonstrators. This weapon has not been used in Bil’in for over one year. Previously, this chemical weapon has been challenged in court, and the case was won against the Israeli Army.
The following Palestinians are currently being detained in connection with their active resistance against the military occupation:
Mahmoud Issa Yaseen
Muhammed abde al fatah burnat
We welcome all of you to support the village of Bil’in in their resistance against the military occupation.
4-To all our supporters and friends,
Bi’lin is a small village that has been struggling against construction of the wall for the last 5 years. The Israeli occupation has resulted in the confiscation of sixty percent of the farmers’ land. This year, occupation forces have invaded the village and taken away many of the villages’ youth. Many people have also been injured at the weekly demonstration against the wall and one farmer was killed. Neighboring villages have also experienced raids, brutalization, and land confiscation.
Our demonstrations are joined by many internationals and Israeli activists who have come every week in solidarity with our cause to demand justice. We want your help to continue our non-violent struggle in Bi’lin and other villages. In order to maintain our resistance, we need financial, media, and advocacy assistance. This will help us remain steadfast on our land and to resist further efforts to drive us away. Send a message to the Israeli government in your own countries by demonstrating at Israeli embassies and demanding an immediate end to the occupation of our land.
Thank you for your continued assistance in our struggle. Please donate to our cause
Help Us Continue Our Struggle!
In additon to the help provided by our volunteers, we are always grateful for financial assistance. Many villagers have lost thier jobs, thier land and their ability to sustain themselves and their families.
In addition we are in urgent need of funds to continue our non-violent resistance and to spread Bilin’s example to other villages. Please wire funds to the Friends of Freedom and Justice Society in Bilin using the bank information below:
BANK OF PALESTINE PLC
RAMALLAH , WEST BANK, PALESTINE TERRITORIES
SWIFT CODE: PALSPS22
BANK NO : 89
BRANCH NO :458
BENEFICIARY NAME : FRIENDS OF FREEDOM AND JUSTICE
BENEFICIARY ACCOUNT NO: 222459
TELEPHONE NO : 022489129
ADDRESS : BILIN
–The Friends of Freedom and Justice in Bi’lin
Thank you for you continued support,
Iyad Burnat- Head of Popular Commitee in Bilin
co-founder of Friends of Freedom and Justice – Bilin
Mobile- (00972) (0) 547847942
Office- (00972) (2) 2489129
Mobile- (00972) (0) 598403676