As local residents accompanied by international peace activists held their nonviolent weekly protest against the Annexation Wall in Bil’in village, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah, Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters at them leading to dozens of injuries.The Friends of Freedom and Justice in Bil’in reported that nearly 150 protesters brought a message of unity to the Palestinian leaders while some carried a large banner showing the picture of late president, former Fateh leader, Yasser Arafat, and late Hamas leader, Ahmad Yassin.
Iyad Bornat of the Popular Committee in Bil’in stated that the Palestinians must unite in order to resist the Israeli occupation, and saluted the internationals who act in solidarity with the Palestinians, the Palestine Summer Encounter and other groups who show solidarity with Bil’in and the nonviolent struggle against the illegal Annexation Wall and settlements.
Bornat said that as hundreds of internationals travel to Palestine to show solidarity, the Palestinian leadership must act and end the internal divisions and the rifts especially between Fateh and Hamas.
As the protesters chanted and sang during their approach towards the wall, Israeli soldiers waited approximately 10 minutes before firing tear gas and concussion grenades into the crowd and farmlands.
The soldiers continued to fire tear gas canisters at the protesters as they were returning to the village.
Some of the canisters caused fires to break out in the dry grass of the olive orchards and farmlands of the residents of Bil’in.