Yesterday, at 4:30 am, Popular Resistance activist Mahmoud Zwahre was again arrested by the Israeli army, at his house in Al Ma’asara, just southwest of Bethlehem.
An attempt to arrest Zwahre was made previously during the weekly Friday protest in the village. This week, on Wednesday, a large group of Israeli soldiers raided Zwahre’s home, just before dawn.
Mahmoud Zwahre, according to the Palestinian News Network (PNN), is an activist and coordinator for the Popular Committee Against the Wall and the Settlements in Al Ma’asara. Soldiers surrounded the Zwahre residence and declared it a closed military zone, as they proceeded to tear through the contents of the house, terrorizing the children and abusing Mahmoud in front of his family.
He was arrested, blindfolded, and taken to an unknown destination — essentially, and by all rights, amounting to a kidnapping.
(Al Ma’asara is a small Palestinian village located in Area B of the central occupied West Bank. Though Area B is officially recognized to be under joint Israeli-Palestinian security control, the 1967 Israeli occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem has yet to be granted legitimacy by the international community.)
Munther Amira, director of the board of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee Against the Wall and the Settlements (PSCC) in the Palestinian territories, explained in an interview with the PNN that the Israeli occupation increasingly targets activists of Popular Resistance and their activities:
The activities of Popular Resistance are peaceful and designed to highlight the suffering of the Palestinian people through the Israeli occupation practices of racism and violation of international law. Nevertheless, the PSCC has documented the rough and violent reactions by Israeli soldiers against the protests and marches organized by the Popular Struggle Committees in the various provinces of the country.
The committee denounces the arrest of its coordinator Mahmoud Zwahre, and calls for his release.