Bil’in Village – Palestinian non-violent resistance

July 27, 2009
Richard Kuper

bilin_ffpThe non-violent resistance in Bil’in to the confiscation of its lands by the building of the wall has been going on for over three years now. The Israeli army is meeting this resistance with increased violence, repression and illegal arrests.

This story is regularly updated, in words and in  video, on the The Bil’in Friends of Freedom and Justice website. Here are some extracts:

The Bil’in Friends of Freedom and Justice society aims to build a wide network of people from all over the globe who support Freedom and Justice for all. It aims to strengthen the steadfastness of the Palestinian People, to make spread the community’s methods of non-violent resistance and to help and support the education of Palestinian youth at schools and universities…

The residents of Bil’in depend on agriculture as their main source of their income. Traditionally such income has been generated by raising cattle and poultry, and collecting the produce of bees and olive trees. Close to 60% of Bil’in’s land, and some of its best farming land, has been annexed for Israeli Settlements and the construction of Israel’s Apartheid Wall- the state of Israel is strangling the village. Every day it destroys a bit more, creating in an open air prison for Bil’in’s inhabitants…

Bil’in residents have continued to withstand these injustices despite the increase in the number of night raids the Israeli Soldiers inflict upon their town, the increasing number of arrests of its inhabitants and of activists. But now, the army has toughened the oppression by systematically arresting members of the Bil’in Committee in charge of organizing the non-violent demonstrations in an attempt to discourage residents from participating and to reduce their resistance to the occupation.

Supported by Israeli and international activists, Bil’in residents peacefully demonstrate every Friday in front of the “work-site of shame”. And every Friday the Israeli army responds with both physical and psychological violence. Working side-by-side with international and Israeli Activists, the people of Bil’in have managed to achieve the recognition of the Israel High Court, which recently ruled that the route of the Apartheid Wall near in the village is illegal and must be changed.

10th July 2009: Two kidnapped and dozens suffered from gas inhalation when Israeli troops attacked the weekly protest in Bil’in village near the central West Bank city of Ramallah on Friday…

5th July 2009: At approximately 4:15 on the morning of 5.7.09 more than 100 Israeli Soldiers invaded Belin Village. Many of them were masked and all carried automatic weapons. They attacked several houses and arrested Oda Rebhe Abu Rahma, 20, and Mahmoud Issa Yassein, 17. Upon request the soldiers would not tell their families where they were taking them or the name of an officer in command. Palestinian and international presence questioned the soldiers and dearrested several people who were documenting the kidnappings. This is the third week of night raids in Bilin village. Israeli soldier have conducted night raids almost every night and have arrested seven village youth during this period.

3rd July 2009: Three injured and dozens suffered from gas inhalation when Israeli troops attacked the weekly protest in Bil’in village near the central West Bank city of Ramallah on Friday.

And much, much more.

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