PNN – Palestine News Network – Israeli Troops Arrest 8 Civilians Near Bethlehem While Protesting the Wall

23.12.10 – 01:56

Ghassan Bannoura – PNN – Israeli soldiers arrested on Wednesday afternoon eight civilians as they protested the Israeli construction of the wall on lands owned by the villagers of al-Walajeh near the southern West bank city of Bethlehem.

On Wednesday midday bulldozers started clearing trees, rocks, shrubs to make way for the Wall that is designed to enclose the village of al-Walajeh . Three days ago, Israeli authorities had marked the route the Wall with orange plastic straps, indicating that the route of the Wall, which would swallow a natural spring, three graves and run through a small grave yard.


Wall protest near Bethlehem – photo by IMEMC

A group of villagers and some supporters walked up to the bulduzers destroying their lands and asked they halt work. The villagers were arguing that the Israeli army had no right to destroy their land and that the legal situation concerning this part of the village was not yet clear.

The villagers  were prevented from reaching the bulldozer by more than three times their number of Israeli soldiers, border police, and riot police.

When a commander recognized Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh from an action earlier this year on the other side of the village where the Wall is already being built. Dr. Qumsiyeh was standing in a group of people when he was suddenly arrested without the slightest warning or provocation.  Troops  then started to violently push the crowd into the village, causing several villagers to fall on the rocky, uneven ground and sustain minor injuries.

Dr. Qumsiyeh is a local leader of the nonviolence movement recently he released a book about the history of the nonviolence movement in Palestine.

Overall, eight Palestinians – one woman and seven men including teenagers and an elderly men were detained violently. Three were handcuffed; five were bound with plastic straps, one of them so tightly that the strap cut into his flesh, which the soldiers refused to loosen for several hours.  Two were beaten badly after they were detained.

The eight were first brought to the police station at the “checkpoint 300” near Bethlehem ,  and then transferred to Atarot military detention facility , where they are being investigated currently.

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PNN – Palestine News Network – Israeli Troops Arrest 8 Civilians Near Bethlehem While Protesting the Wall.

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