About 100 Bethlehem area residents demonstrated on Tuesday at the Nashash Israeli army checkpoint between Bethlehem and Hebron cities in the southern part of the West Bank, closing it down for 20 minutes and demanding an end of the illegal occupation of PalestineThis action marks the 40th anniversary of the start of the Israeli-Arab 6 day war in which Israel occupied Arab lands including the Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights.

The demonstration was organized as part of a series of week long actions by the ‘Stop the Bleeding Bethlehem’ campaign, a group of local grassroots NGO’s calling for a non violent resistance to the continued Israeli military occupation and colonization of Palestinian lands in the West Bank, as well as the dismantling of settlements and of the illegal separation wall snaking across the area.

Participant Jamal Al Gadi explained that the demonstration was ‘a non-violent call for a better political situation in Palestine.’ The 100 people in attendance included about 50 children. Soldiers and Palestinian residents squared off at the crossing, but the end result of the action was a largely calm confrontation.