Clashes continued much of today between Palestinian demonstrators and Occupation forces on the lands near old Cremisan in Beit Jala, leading to 11 injuries, 8 from tear gas inhalation and three more from rubber-coated bullets. Occupation forces fired on demonstrators as they resisted the ongoing bulldozing, which is affecting a wide, planted stretch of land. The targeted land will be used to continue building the Apartheid Wall along the settler road that connects Har Gilo and Etzion with the northern side.
This morning, the demonstrators were able to plant 30 thirty olive trees to replace those that have been uprooted by bulldozers over the past days. Occupation forces began work last week, a day after issuing military orders to the Beit Jala Municipality (but without issuing any warnings to the owners of land).
Um Thaer lives in a in small building adjacent to the bulldozed land. Three olive trees have been uprooted, in addition to a number of citrus trees which she owned. Last Sunday evening Occupation forces raided her home, which has been over the past ten years subjected to shelling as well as to blasts during the construction of the settler road.
A large number of soldiers have been stationed in the area since the construction of the Wall began. They have wasted no time in harassing and intimidating the local inhabitants, and have threatened a number of students on their way home from school.
Awwad Abu Sawi, speaking for Stop the Wall in Bethlehem, emphasized the importance of concerted action and the need to continue the popular mobilization in order to thwart Occupation plans.