In an act of nonviolent resistance, a Palestinian man refused to stop reading from the Qur’an, despite beatings and racial slurs from Israeli soldiers.

Israeli soldiers occupying the West Bank attacked a Palestinian because he read from the Qur’an, as reported by eyewitnesses. Israeli forces were blocking passage for Palestinians both on foot and in cars, which is common in the West Bank, in its northern Nablus District last night.

While waiting, Palestinians do many things to pass the time, including reading newspapers, talking on the phone, listening to the radio, and reading the Qur’an. Thirty year old Mahmoud Ali Ahmed Sa’adeh, was one such person. As he read from the Muslim holy book on Tuesday evening, Israeli soldiers brutally beat him on the grounds that he provoked them by reading the Qur’an.

Al Hiyat Newspaper correspondent Romel Al Soaiti and Director of the Akhbaryat site spoke about the incident he witnessed.

“Occupation soldiers detained many Palestinians at a checkpoint in Yitzhar for more than an hour under the hot sun without any justification. Sa’adeh was in his car, waiting to pass in order to attend his cousin’s wedding. He attempted to reason with the soldiers, which is a lost cause, saying he had nothing to warrant arrest or detention. However, the Israelis responded with verbal abuse.”

What Sa’adeh did next is begin reading aloud from the Qur’an. The journalist continued to recount the scene. “The occupation soldiers tried to prevent him from continuing to read the Qu’ran. They also verbally abused and insulted the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet Mohammad, prayer and peace. After refusing to comply with such an outrageous request as to not read Qur’an, Israeli soldiers attacked and brutally beat him.”

Al Soaiti said that in the course of their attack, he was able to hit one of the soldiers on the one hand. “That soldier hit the poor man in the head with the butt of his machine gun. The wound was deep and blood gushed from Sa’adeh’s head and ear. Then he fainted.”

According to other eyewitnesses who were near the checkpoint, a number of citizens from the Israeli group, “Checkpoint Watch,” were able to save the young man from further beating and allow for his transport via Palestinian ambulance to NablusRafidiya Hospital.”

The occupation soldiers stationed at the checkpoint also brutally assaulted young Maher Mahmoud Al Rayyan. Israeli soldiers beat the 24 year old from Ainabus Village on the pretext that he tried to defend a senior citizen over the age of 70 after the soldiers beat and insulted the elderly man. Israeli forces not only hit young Al Rayyan, but beat him more severely, breaking his arm before arresting him for his act of nonviolent resistance by trying to assist a 70 year old abuse victim.