Central demonstrations in the Palestinian districts where held on November 9 as part of the National and International Day Against the Apartheid Wall in Palestine, called for by the Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign in coordination with the National and Islamic Forces. Thousands of Palestinians demonstrated on this day against the Apartheid Wall, calling for it to be stopped and torn down; there were demonstrations in Jenin, Ramallah, Qalqiliya, Tulkarem, Nablus and Salfit. The demonstrators called slogans emphasizing that they wonât be prisoners in their own country and that the idea of the Apartheid Wall is a Zionist one based on racism and colonial expansionist plans over Palestine.
The day has been hailed as an important step in grassroots mobilizing against the Wall. After one year of efforts, the Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign sees this day, the events, and wide-spread exposure on a national level as the largest momentum yet for the Campaign to stop the Wall.
Demonstrations in 6 Districts
In Jenin, a demonstration against the Wall took place in Zububa village, which the Wall surrounds on three sides and isolates 600 dunums of land from the village. The activities started at 11 in the morning when hundreds of demonstrators marched to the Wall holding signs against the Occupation and the Wall. The demonstrators began tearing down wires from the Wall when the Occupation Military started shooting bullets and tear gas at the demonstrators.
***image8***In Ramallah over 2,000 Palestinians participated in the demonstration which shut down the city center for two hours. Students, representatives from numerous parties, and residents from the city and surrounding villages gathered in the city center, the Manara, and marched through the main streets. Demands to tear down the Wall were accompanied by calls for the Palestinian Authority to cease ânegotiationsâ until the Wall is torn down. Speeches were given from representatives of the Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, the National and Islamic Forces, and the Palestinian Authority. The Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign has also made a photo exhibit at the Baladna Cultural Center in Ramallah where images and documentary films on the Wall are being displayed in addition to disseminating updated maps, posters, and information on the Wall.
In Qalqiliya hundreds of residents from the city demonstrated in the city and marched to the Wall painting slogans and raising their flag on the Wall. The Occupation Military attacked the demonstrators who attempted to raise the Palestinian flag on the watchtower of the Apartheid Wall and shot sound bombs and tear gas at the demonstrators.
***image9***In Tulkarem a demonstration took place from the city towards the village of Jubara, which is isolated by the Wall. Hundreds of Palestinians tried to reach the village but the Occupation Military prevented them from reaching the village along with preventing the people of Jubara from joining the demonstration. Demonstrators were beaten by the Military at the checkpoint.
In Nablus over 400 people gathered in the city center for a demonstration against the Wall, while in Bethlehem a speaking forum on the Wall and its impacts was arranged, after which a march took place to Aida refugee camp which is threatened by the Apartheid Wall.
In Salfit, tens of women from the villages of Biddya, Qarawat Marda, Bani Hassan, Rafat, Iskaka, and Hares demonstrated near an isolated home by the Wall in Mas-ha, expressing solidarity with the family of the house. Despite the Militaryâs attempt to stop the women from reaching the house, they insisted until they succeeded to reach the family. The women were raising slogans demanding for the complete destruction of the Wall and a halt to the confiscation of lands under the pretext âsecurityâ.
Media Coverage and the Week Ahead
In Palestine, widespread media coverage in radio, television and print marked November 9 as the day in which Palestinians lead a national and global anti-wall protest. Local stations showed âspotsâ on the Wall throughout the day and the days preceding, slogans were read out, and interviews were held. All major Arab satellite channels covered November 9th. Coverage of the worldwide demonstration began gaining exposure in Palestine on the 8th, as demonstrations and activities began worldwide on the day prior.
Demonstrations are to continue in the northern West Bank until November 16th, many which will be held with other activities, in affected villages by the Wall and near its âgatesâ. It is anticipated that further outreach will take place during the week on local TV and radio as communities continue their resistance to Israelâs Apartheid Wall and policies of expulsion.
Click to see Nov 9 photos from Qalqiliya , Zububa,or Ramallah