A massive Israeli army force attacked and beaten up a group of Palestinian farmers and peace activists in Artas village located to the south east of Bethlehem city in the southern West Bank on Sunday afternoon.
A group of Palestinian activists from stop bleeding of Bethlehem campaign and local farmers from the village of Artass joined by the Palestinian minister of information Dr. Mustafa Al Barghouthi started to plant trees in a land that is owned by local farmers, which the army demolished trees in on Sunday morning to make way for a sewage pip e for a nearby Israeli settlement.
IMEMC corresponded on location reported that while the group planting trees the Israeli soldiers attacked them using rifle buts and batons, several people were heavily beaten among them Dr. Barghouthi.
On Wednesday morning, at least 30 Palestinian, International and Israeli peace activists and farmers attempted to prevent the Israeli army from bulldozing land near the village of Artas, the protestors arrived at the site after receiving news that bulldozers were approaching the village.
The Israeli army is bulldozing the land near the Monastery in order to build the wall in the area. Troops prevented the peace activists from reaching the bulldozers and claimed the area as a closed military zone. When asked, troops failed to provide any evidence proving that the construction site was a closed military zone.
On Thursday, the popular committee activists set up tents on the site and decided to stay overnight to guard the area from further bulldozing attempts. On Saturday late night soldiers arrived to the tents location and took photos, after several hours, on Sunday early in the morning the soldiers came with bulldozers, forced farmers and their supporters out then demolished the tents and that trees.
IMEMC corresponded stated that the army is still attacking any one who tries to plant trees or to protect the old trees from being illegal demolished against all laws known to human kind.