Monday, August 02, 2010
demo against the Wall in Al Masara / Manif contre le Mur a Al Masara, 30.07.2010
(c) Anne Paq/Activestills.org, Al Masara, 30.07.2010
Approximately 60 people attended today’s non-violent demonstration in Al-Ma’sara. Half of the demonstrators were internationals from mainly Italy, Denmark and Spain.
By chanting and being in the front The Popular Committee members and other Palestinians from the village was leading the demonstration. The internationals followed their lead and chanted along with the Palestinians, showing their support in the fight against the illegal Israeli occupation. The purpose of the demonstration was to reach the Palestinian land that the illegal settlement Efrata and the building of the Apartheid wall has stripped the village of.
As usual the demonstrators were stopped by the IOF on the main road. The IOF momentarily surrounded the demonstrators with jeeps and threw sound-bombs at the unarmed participators;
The Palestinians and the internationals marched towards the main entrance of the village while chanting free free Palestine.
When demonstrators reached the main road 3 military jeeps blocked the road, preventing the demonstrators from reaching the Palestinian land. The soldiers allowed the demonstrators to pass by the jeeps, but immediately blocked the road behind them. More military jeeps arrived in front of the demonstrators, and as a result the demonstrators were almost surrounded by soldiers. Members of the Al-Masara Popular Committee spoke in front of the soldiers, demanding their right to the land that belongs to the Palestinians according to International Law.
The soldiers responded by throwing sound-bombs even though the participators where unarmed and urged the soldiers not to shoot.
The demonstrators stayed in front of the soldiers despite of the sound-bombs, and after a while the soldiers retired. The demonstrators formed a circle and danced and sang. Afterwards a member of the popular committee thanked the internationals and Israelis for their support, and ended the demonstration.
Al Ma'sara is one of nine intertwined villages which are surrounded by the illegal Israeli settlement Efrata, which is a part of the Gush Etzion settlement block. The 9000 Palestinian inhabitants of the nine villages are enclosed by almost as many illegal settlers. In November 2006, Israel began the construction work for the Apartheid Wall on the villages' land, which would annex an additional 3500 dunums (35,000 square metres) if completed. This means that Al-Ma’sara and the eight other villages would be stripped of more than half of their land
Al-Ma'sara is an agricultural village, with the majority of the population relying on the land for sheep and goat farming, and for harvesting crops such as grapes, olives and seasonal fruit and vegetables. In addition to being the village’s main source of income, the land is also Al-Ma’sara’s chief source of natural water. Therefore, Israel’s plan to strip the inhabitants of a large part of this land would cut off their main water supply, thereby breaching international law both in terms of the individual needs of the villagers and of their crops and animals; violating the villagers’ human rights and their income.
Since November 2006, the Al-Ma'sara Popular Committee has been organizing weekly non-violent demonstrations against the Apartheid Wall, the illegal settlements, and against the occupation as a whole. The non-violent protest started as a reaction to the soldiers’ destruction of the grape and olive fields. Whilst in the beginning protestors were able to march straight to the construction site of the Apartheid Wall and temporarily block bulldozers from their work, the protestors are now stopped on the main road in the at the entrance of the village
Al-Ma'sara village - Bethlehem
Un groupe de Palestiniens, d'Israéliens et des internationaux ont manifesté contre le Mur dans le village de Al Masara , le 30.07.2010. Les manifestants portaient des banderoles contre l'apartheid, et pour le boycott de l'apartheid israélien. Ils ont d'abord été arrêté par les soldats israéliens quand ils ont atteint la route principale. Les soldats israéliens ont jeté des grenades à concussion directement sur la foule. Mais les manifestants sont resté sur leur position, et après un moment l'armée israélienne est partie, laissant les manifestants faire une danse à côté de la route.