Israeli forces injured one Palestinian at the weekly anti-wall rally Friday Jan. 28 in the West Bank village of Bil’in, near Ramallah. Soldiers fired tear gas to disperse dozens of locals and international demonstrators protesting Israel’s separation wall, which confiscates large swathes of village land. The Israeli military said troops responded to protesters throwing rocks.
Palestinian ambassador to Chile Mai al-Kaila attended the rally, with a delegation of Chilean lawmakers, including deputy speaker of parliament Ivan Moreira. A delegation representing the Arab Liberation Front also joined the protest. Demonstrators marched to the wall raising Palestinian flags and photos of Jawahir Abu Rahma, who died on Jan. 1 after inhaling tear gas at a similar protest.
In a statement, the Popular Committee Against the Wall in Bil’in praised Human Rights Watch and the Spanish parliament for taking a stand against Israel’s extension of activist Abdullah Abu Rahma’s detention. He was convicted of organizing protests in the village.
Protesters also rallied against Israel’s wall and settlements in the central West Bank village An-Nabi Salih—and were met by tear gas and rubber-coated bullets. (Ma’an News Agency, Jan. 30)
Palestinian youth shot by settlers
A 15-year-old Palestinian, Yusuf Khlayel, was gravely wounded on Jan. 28 when he shot by armed Jewish settlers near Hebron. Yusuf’s father, Fakhri, said that he and his son had gone that morning to work their land between the villages of Beit Omar and Safa, when a group of some 100 settlers appeared. The elder Khlayel said he was some distance away from his son when the shooting started and did not see exactly what happened. Another relative, Murad Khlayel, 19, was also shot in the arm.
It was the second such incident in two days. On Jan. 27, a young Palestinian was killed by presumed Jewish settlers in the Palestinian village of Iraq Burin in the northern West Bank. (NYT, Jan. 28)