An Israeli military source reported on Wednesday evening that thousands of pullout opponents have prepared to launch their planned march from Ofakim in the Negev to the Gaza Strip, while theÃ‚Â Israeli army and police forcesÃ‚Â got ready to block their march.
The settlers prepared for the march after conducting their protest in Ofakim, whereÃ‚Â the Israeli Police allowed the settlers to march to.
Some 15,000 Israeli soldiers and policemen were deployed in the area in order to bar the protestors from reaching the Gaza Strip.
Meanwhile, the Yesha council of settlements planned, onÃ‚Â Wednesday,Ã‚Â to increaseÃ‚Â its attempts to infiltrate Gaza. Yesha council leaders ordered thousands of youth to enter the Gush Katif settlement block illegally, but instructed them not to resist if they are arrested.
On Wednesday afternoon, the Israeli police arrested twenty pullout opponents, including five minors at the Kissufim crossing. Gaza was announced a closed zone to non-resident Israelis.
Protest organizers prepared a plan to split the protestors into three groups and send them into public parks, and then on toÃ‚Â Gush Katif.
Hundreds of settlers infiltrated Gaza Strip settlements overnight, defying military orders, the Yesha Council of settlements reported.
Hundreds of settlers of the Gush Katif and Netzer Hazani settlement are planning to hold a Ã¢â‚¬Å“ceremonial handoverÃ¢â‚¬Â of their weapons to the Israeli army on Thursday.
This procedure is said to refute rumors regarding armed violence during pullout.