Inside Israel and the Palestinian Territories
Click below for a multi-media ’essay’ on the weekly protests staged in the West Bank to protest the barrier Israel is building in and around the West Bank. Israel says the barrier prevents Palestinian attacks in its towns and cities. Palestinians say the barrier is a land grab as much of it is built on land they want for a future state.
A pro-Palestinian group, Anarchists Against the Wall, has shot the video below showing an Israeli undercover unit arresting protesters earlier this month during a demonstration against Israel’s West Bank barrier in the Palestinian village of Nilin.
Palestinians call the network of mostly razor-wire tipped fences and towering concrete walls a land grab by Israel, which captured the West Bank in the 1967 Middle East war. Palestinians hope to establish a state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
It’s a bit like a Hitchock thriller. Nobody knows where he is — not even the U.S. State Department — and nobody knows when he will show up in Israel. All we know is, suspense is building and it’s time to watch out for surprises.
President Barack Obama’s Middle East peace envoy Senator George Mitchell is somewhere in transit — probably – and expected in Israel and the Palestinian Territories next week – sometime.
Last week we posted about the fifth anniversary of the International Court of Justice ruling on the separation barrier Israel is building in and around the West Bank.
We mentioned how, despite it being one of the Palestinians’ most hated symbols of Israeli occupation, some people had worked the barrier into their daily lives, using it as a backdrop for movie screenings, restaurant menus and all manner of protest – artistic and otherwise.
This week marks the fifth anniversary of the International Court of Justice’s ruling against Israel’s controversial separation barrier, which is still under construction in and around the West Bank. According to a report from the UN High Commission for Human Rights, about 60 percent of the barrier has been constructed.
Israel says the barrier is aimed at preventing Palestinian terrorism, and says that since the wall has been built there has been a significant drop in attacks. However, the ICJ condemned Israel’s construction of the barrier on land within the West Bank-land Palestinians want for a future state-instead of on the Israeli side of the green line (the 1949 armistice line).
Every week our photographers and cameramen cover any number of demonstrations organised by activists protesting against the barrier Israel is building in and around the West Bank. Palestinians say the barrier is an Israeli land-grab that stifles freedom of movement and economic growth. Israeli authorities say the barrier prevents would-be attackers from reaching Israel.
You can read more about the controversy over the barrier here.
Covering the demonstrations has become a kind of routine. Most demonstrations happen on Fridays in the early afternoon. Protesters usually arrive along the same route. The Israeli army or Border Police are usually positioned in the same places. Protests start fairly quietly with chanting and flag-waving but almost invariably degenerate into skirmishes where demonstrators throw rocks at the Israeli forces who fire tear gas or rubber coated bullets to disperse the crowd.