The weekly protest in Bilâin headed out after the Friday prayer to protest the wall and settlements defying the military orders, which three weeks ago declared the village a closed military zone on Fridays. The protest was joined by Hisham Abu Raya, a member of the Palestinian Liberation Front, along with international activists.
The protesters carried Palestinian flags and called for national unity against the Israeli occupation and against the land confiscation and stated their refusal of the recent military orders. They raised banners condemning the Israeli settlement policy, the arrests of human rights activists.
***image2***The protestors further raised banners calling for action against the companies building the Wall â among them Elbit Systems, Cement Roadstone Holdings (CRH) and Magal Security Systems. This comes only days after four Swedish national pension funds have divested from Elbit. The shares the day after lost 3% in value.
Ahmad Abu Rahme, member of the Popular Committee against the Wall and the Settlements, delivered a speech to mark the 34th anniversary of Land Day. He praised the continuous struggle of the Palestinian people for their land. He underlined the necessity to close ranks to be able to challenge the Israeli policy of colonization.
The Popular Committee against the Wall and the Settlements in Bil’in praised the position of Abbas Zaki, member of the Central Committee of Fatah, who refused to sign a pledge to the occupation in the Ofer detention center, and did not leave detention center without his fellow grassroots activists who were arrested in a peaceful march at the checkpoint near Bethlehem. They underlined that these arrests will not deter grassroots activists from continuing the popular resistance against occupation, the settlements and the wall.
When the protest reached the Wall, an Israeli army unit was stationed behind a concrete block. The gate that leads to the confiscated land was already closed and razor wire was placed in front of it. The army fired teargas canisters and rubber-coated metal bullets at demonstrators, causing dozens to suffer from gas inhalation.
A delegation of 25 Spanish solidarity activists visited the village and attended a presentation by the Popular Committee about the experience of the popular resistance in the village and its achievements.