Land Day Commemorated in Betlehem District
Today, international and Israeli activists joined more than 200 Palestinians from the village of Al-Khadr and surrounding villages in their weekly demonstration against the construction of a series of Apartheid structures, including the Annexation Barrier, a settler by-pass road, and by-pass tunnel. Today residents commemorated Land Day, traditionally observed in Palestine on March 30.
Participants gathered near the main thoroughfare, Route 60, and held their midday Friday prayer near the site where the Annexation Barrier is currently being built. The Wall in this area will cut off or destroy 90% of Al-Khadr’s land in Israel’s most recent policy of land confiscation. They then marched towards the highway where Israeli Occupation Forces had blocked the street with razor wire. 9 military jeeps and 1 armored personnel carrier were stationed near the entrance to the area. Soldiers announced that if anyone touched the wire they would be shot. Leaders of the Popular Committee of the area spoke about the connection between the construction of the Annexation Barrier and the first Land Day.
Land Day is held in honor of 6 Palestinian Israelis who were killed in a demonstration in Sakhnin (near Tel Aviv) in 1976. That demonstration was against the ‘appropriation’ of Palestinian lands in Israel. Since that time, Land Day has been a time for Palestinians and their supporters around the world to unite in demonstrations against the theft of their lands by Israel.