Archive for the ‘Police Brutality’ Category

Regards sur la banlieue: Bagatelle I

February 11, 2010

Part I

Part II


Regards sur la banlieue: Bagatelle II

February 6, 2010

Friday Demonstration in Ni’lin

August 9, 2009

On Friday, August 7th at 1pm, approximately 30 international activists joined roughly 120 residents of Ni’lin on their weekly demonstration against the illegal Apartheid wall which Israel constructed on Ni’lin land.  The protesters walked through the olive grove on the southern side of the village towards the wall and settlements surrounding Ni’lin on three sides, reaching the fence around 1:30pm, many brandishing Palestinian flags.  Soldiers immediately began to shoot tear gas, sound grenades, and smelly chemical water known in Arabic as “khara” or “shit”.  Fortunately for activists, the wind blew the gas and chemicals away from them.  Many protesters threw rocks on the security road preventing army jeeps from easily accessing the demonstrators.  When security vehicles passed, they were pummeled with stones by the shebab, the soldiers jumping quickly in and out of their jeeps to shoot tear gas and rubber bullets.  After the second soldier invasion on the Palestinian side of the fence, protesters dispersed and returned to the village shortly after 3pm.  One member of the press was injured on the leg by a tear gas canister.
In 1948, the village of Ni’lin had 58,000 dunnums of land; today there remain only 7,300 dunnums.  In the latest round of land confiscation by the separation barrier, nearly 3,000 dunnums were taken including 200 for a tunnel to be built under the segregated settler-only road 446, closing the current entrance to the village.  The tunnel will close the road to Palestinian vehicles, and is designed to give Israeli occupation forces control over the movement of Palestinian residents by allowing the village to be blocked with a single military vehicle.  Ni’lin will be split into two parts, upper and lower, as the road runs through the village.

In total, 38 people have been shot by Israeli forces with live ammunition in Ni’lin: nine were shot with 5.56mm caliber live ammunition and 29 were shot with 0.22 caliber live ammunition.  To date, Israeli occupation forces have killed five Palestinians and critically injured one international activist during the unarmed demonstrations.  The last use of live ammunition against Ni’lin protesters was on June 5th, 2009 in which five Palestinians were shot, including one fatality –

The procession of roughly 120 Palestinians and 30 internationals marches through olive fields down to the separation barrier after Friday prayerUnlike in Bi'lin where the protesters stay together on one road leading to the fence, Ni'lin protesters scatter across an olive grove along the fence and pelt army vehicles with rocksThrowing stones on the military ring road along the separation fence to make soldier access more difficultThere was a large military presence.  Soldiers launched dangerously high-velocity tear gas projectiles, toxic chemicals called "shit" in Arabic and rubber bullets.  Soldiers invaded the Palestinian side of the fence twice during the demo

Weekly Protest in Bil’in

August 2, 2009

Over the last few weeks, the residents of Bilin have been subjected to constant night raids by the Israeli military, in retaliation to their weekly nonviolent demonstrations, now in their fifth year, against the Apartheid Wall, which has stolen over half of their land.  So far, 17 youths have been arrested, some as young as 16 years of age, usually for their participation in the demonstrations.  Many of the boys will not see their family again for months.

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The procession of several hundred march toward the separation fence around 2pmSoldiers at an army base on the other side of the barrierAfter protesters pried open the gate, the army brought a truck that sprayed a stinky green chemical substance all over the crowd.  Then they got out the tear gas and the protest ended with everyone running and screaming in pain.

Police protect settlers, attack protesters, after settler invasion in East Jerusalem

July 28, 2009

A truly fair fightPolice violently arrest Huda ImamSettlers occupy Palestinian home in Sheikh Jarrah, East JerusalemSettlers record protestors from the occupied house.  They smile and laugh a lot, taunting the crowd from behind the lines of state protection.Settler security forces their way through the crowd of protesters so settlers can get more suppliesInternationals were threatened with arrest by Israeli police following Huda Imam's incarceration

On Sunday, July 26th at 12:30pm, three internationals, one Israeli and two Palestinians, including the former Minister of Jerusalem Affairs, were arrested in an attempt to block settlers from entering a Palestinian home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah.  As they were arrested, settlers entered the home and began to destroy the house from the inside, as they plan to build a new house for Jewish settlers on the site.  At 3:30pm three internationals tried to enter the Palestinian home to stop the destruction and were also put under arrest.  A protest in solidarity with the arrestees and against the actions of the settlers was called for at 4pm on Monday.

The scene at 4pm on Monday is relatively calm with people videotaping the activities of the settlers and chanting pro-Palestinian slogans outside the tin barrier put up by the settlers along the perimeter of the pedestrian path in the center of the neighborhood.  Roughly 60 protesters are present, about 1/2 Palestinian and 1/2 international.  Young Palestinians set off fireworks nearby and bang on the tin wall making loud clanging noises.  The approximately 15 police and 10 border police present for the settlers’ “protection” from the beginning of the protest begin to react more and more violently as the protest continues, threatening the kids with violence by lifting their hands as if about to hit them.  Despite a court order ordering the settlers not to work or build on the land of the Palestinian home they destroyed, the settlers move building materials into the house from outside – on two occasions with the help of the police – despite cries from the Palestinians that they were breaking the court order.

Between 4:30 and 5pm, one settler provocatively exits the zone two times to get tools.  Each time the police force their way through the crowd, pushing people aside, at times violently.  The settler laughs as he moves through the crowd and protesters scream “fascist.”  Roughly 15 more police enter the occupied house’s yard during this period bringing the total to around 40 or 50.

At 5:42pm as the protest gets more agitated, 10 to 12 police, unannounced, charge the crowd attacking a small boy and pouncing on a Palestinian woman, Huda Imam, who was leading the anti-settler chants.  Imam is thrown to the ground as at least five officers hold her down and twist her arm behind her back.  She is the only arrest of the afternoon.  Witnesses also report seeing people trampled during the assault, and an Israeli was held and dragged by the neck after earlier attempting to negotiate with the police.  Chaos ensues following the charge and the protest is split into two; both halves are further separated from the settlers who were taunting, laughing and sticking out their tongues at protesters earlier in the afternoon.

At 5:47pm police intimidate international activists near the van holding Imam by threatening to arrest them if they do not show their passports.

This is the first house in western Sheikh Jarrah that has been taken over by settlers.  One house in eastern Sheikh Jarrah is currently occupied and the Hannoun and Al-Gawi families are currently facing eviction orders there.

All but one of those arrested on Sunday have been released on the condition they stay out of Sheikh Jarrah for three weeks.

Best chants of the day: 1. “ya moustawtan itlaa barra, falasteen hourra hourra” or “settlers put them out, palestine free free” 2. “ana falastiniyy, ana mish erhabi” or “i’m palestinian, i’m not a terrorist” and the oldie but goodie 3. “1234 occupation no more, 5678 Israel’s a fascist state”

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