More then a thousand schoolchildren, boys and girls from 6 to 14, wearing their school uniforms and carrying bags, demonstrated on Monday (Monday, 13.9) at the wall that is being built in Al-Ram, north of Jerusalem. The pupils carried posters demanding: Ã¢â‚¬Å“Let Us Study!Ã¢â‚¬Â
Over 150 International and Israeli activists of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), Gush Shalom, TaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ayush, Bat-Shalom, Rabbis for Human Rights and others joined the protest.
Throughout the demonstration, giant cranes continued to lift concrete slabs into place, and a strong force of the Border Police was deployed along the path of the wall.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“They are waiting for one boy to throw a stone, in order to attack us with tear gas and rubber-coated bullets, like last time,Ã¢â‚¬Â Uri Avnery remarked. However, the teachers succeeded all through the demonstration, with the help of mayor Sarhan Saleimeh, to convince the kids to have self control, though the distance between the pupils and the Border Policemen was only a few yards.
After most of the demonstrators had already dispersed, some children threw stones and the policemen promptly stormed forward and used tear gas.
Since the Israeli Supreme Court permitted the government to build the wall in this particular sector, the wall has been going up at great speed. Only a few Ã¢â‚¬Å“holesÃ¢â‚¬Â remain. When the wall will be finished, it will cut the children of Al-Ram off from their schools which are located on the Ã¢â‚¬Å“wrongÃ¢â‚¬Â side of the wall, at a distance of a few dozen meters.
Some of the schools will have to be closed and their pupils will roam the streets, because the remaining schools, already overcrowded, will not be able to absorb them. A similar situation exists in near-by al-Issawiyeh, and some other Palestinian villages.
This is only one of the problems caused by the wall, which is cutting off Al-Ram residents from their businesses and working-places, hospitals, universities and even their cemetery.
Despite the International Court of Justice advisory opinion Israel is still going on with and even speeding the construction of the wall confiscating large areas of land from the Palestinians.
Palestinians see the wall as barrier on the way of building a Palestinian State on the West Bank and Gaza Strip since it will leave the Palestinian areas separated from each other.