As the session of the Israeli Supreme Court regarding the construction of the wall on the land of the West Bank village of Bil’in near Ramallah nears, the villagers continue their nonviolent resistance to the wall.
This week, the Israeli peace bloc, "Gush Shalom" issued a call for its supporters to join the weekly anti-wall nonviolent protest in the village.
"On the eve of the Supreme Court’s decision, we shall TODAY, Friday, take part in the big Israeli-Palestinian demonstration in Bil’in," the call which came in a press release said.
"On February 1st the Supreme Court will convene to discuss Bil’in’s petition against the wall. Bil’in struggle became the symbol of the fight against the apartheid fence – the Palestinian-Israeli solidarity is a crucial part of this struggle. We invite all people – those that already stood with us in Bil’in, and those who still didn’t – to come and join us in the struggle."
Gush Shalom is an Israeli peace movement that describes itself as "an extra-parliamentary organization, independent of any party or other political grouping. Some of its activists do belong to political parties"
The primary aim of Gush Shalom is to influence Israeli public opinion and lead it towards peace and conciliation with the Palestinian people with a goal to end the Israeli occupation, on the basis of pre-1967 borders and call for a special arrangement under which East Jerusalem (Including Haram Al-Sharif, known as Temple Mount) to be the capitol of Palestine and West Jerusalem (including the Wailing Wall) to be the capitol of Israel.
The court ruling will decide whether it will allow the state to build the wall on the land of the village, which, if approved will confiscate some 2000 dunams, (500 acres) to the separation wall.
The people of Bil’in, have been demonstrating every Friday, in a non-violent way, in spite of the chain of collective punishments that includes arrests by the army.
Israeli and International peace activists of the International Solidarity Movement have always joined the people of Bil’in in their attempts to stop the wall.
In its press released Gush Shalom called the wall land robbery.
"For almost a year now, we demonstrate regularly together with our partners from Bil’in against the wall and the settlements that rob over half of the village’s lands,"
According to Gush Shalom, the Israeli army has "planted" more than once special units and units of camouflaged as Arabs (mistaarvim), with the aim to transform the non-violent demonstrations in to violent ones.
As part of the army’s attempt to foil nonviolent actions, troops invaded the village several times at on Thursday night and made arrests. The army tried to stop the Israelis to come but couldn’t prevent solidarity.
The group accused the wall to be planned with the intention to annex as much West Bank settlements as possible to Israel, and not on security basis.
"We’ve managed to show that the path of the wall is not security- but settlement driven," Gus Shalom said.