Eighteen demonstrators were arrested By Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) today in the West Bank village of Deir Al Ghussoun, north of Tulkarem, after Israel’s Separation Wall was breached by Palestinian, Israeli and international protesters.
The protesters intended to march to village’s lands that were left isolated behind the Wall, and managed to break open one of the barrier’s gates.
The demonstrators managed to break the lock on the gate by rocking it back and forth, despite the presence of soldiers, but could not reach their lands, as they were being shot at with rubber-coated bullets and teargas . One demonstrator was lightly injured after being struck with a rubber-coated bullet in the leg.As the demonstration was coming to an end, a large group of soldiers surprised a group of the protesters by closing in on them from the direction of the village, and arrested eighteen of the village’s youth. Today’s demonstration was the opening salvo for a public campaign by the Deir Al Ghussoun municipality and the affected farmers, which will accompany an appeal the Israeli High Court to remove the already-built wall from the village’s land. The said appeal is expected to be filed in the near future.
The wall in the area of the village cuts deep into West Bank land, leaving about 2,500 dunums (620 acres) of the village’s land west of the wall (on the ‘Israeli’ side), effecting 120 land owners, dozens of which do not receive permits from the Israeli army to even minimally tend to their lands.