On Friday, Israeli troops attacked the weekly nonviolent protests in a number of West Bank villages. This week, protesters marched in solidarity with Freedom Flotilla 2 detained in Greece and the Welcome To Palestine participants. Protests were reported in the villages of al-Nabi Saleh, Bil‚Äôin, and Nil‚Äôin in the central West Bank, as well as al-Ma‚Äôssara in the south.
In Bil‚Äôin village on Friday, international and Israeli supporters joined villagers and replanted trees on land given back to local farmers after the army adhered to the court order and rerouted the wall around Bil‚Äôin, giving the village half of their stolen land back.
Also on Friday, one boy and a youth were slightly injured when troops fired tear gas at the marchers in the village of al-Nabi Saleh near Ramallah. Villagers and their Israeli and International supporters dragged a mock-ship they named ‚ÄúPopular Resistance Flotilla.‚ÄĚ As soon as they moved outside of the village, Israeli troops showered them with tear gas. In addition to the two injured, many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
Protests were held in Greece after the Greek government prevented the Gaza flotilla boats from sailing from its shores to Gaza. Passengers, mostly Americans, gathered in front of the U.S embassy in Athens to demand the release of the captain and the ships as well. The flotilla passengers stated their goal is to reach Gaza and bring to its population essential material, Israel forbids its entry to the besieged coastal region.
In the nearby village of Nil‚Äôin, where the residents and their Israeli and international supporters held the Friday midday prayers near the Israeli wall, protestors then marched up to the wall. Troops fired tear gas at protesters causing many to suffer from tear gas inhalation.
In the southern west Bank on Friday, villagers protested against the wall and settlements in al-Ma‚Äôsara village near Bethlehem. Israeli troops stopped villagers from reaching the construction side of the wall, and fired tear gas at them to force them back into the village.