After last night’s military incursion into the village of al-Ma’sara, central West Bank, the weekly, non-violent protest continued as usual.The protests in al-Ma’sara have occurred every Friday for the last 3 years. After assembling the villagers and internationals, who march in solidarity with the Palestinians against the construction of the wall, the confiscation of land, and the continued military occupation of the West Bank, the group peacefully marched their usual route, only to be confronted by a barricade.
The soldiers pushed back the group with their batons and rifle butts, and after a short stand off the group dispersed.
Local sources reported that there has been an escalation since the New Year, when the Israeli military informed the local organizers that their non-violent protests would no longer be tolerated.
A source at the event reported that this week soldiers were placed upon the rooftops along the route of the march, and side streets, and that a large transportation vehicle was part of the Israeli contingent. This has not been the case before.
Last night, Israeli military personnel invaded al-Ma’sara. At approximately 1 a.m. the houses of local organizers were entered by the Israeli military, and their families, including young children, were forced outside for questioning whilst the homes were searched.
Property was damaged and the organizers threatened. A member of the Israeli military told Mahmoud Zawahra that if anyone was hurt or killed in the demonstrations, then it would be his responsibility.