Beit Ula Resumes Demonstrations Against the Occupation
On Friday, October 22nd, 2010, around 50 Palestinian residents from the village of Beit Ula, in the southern West Bank, organized a prayer demonstration near Israel’s Separation Barrier. Residents gathered around 12:00pm near the barrier which is built on farmland appropriated from the village. The demonstrators carried Palestinian flags and were attempting to peacefully pray on the land. Three Israeli military jeeps drove up to the gathering and told the Palestinians that they had to leave the area and return to the village.
Activists in Beit Ula intend to resume demonstrations every Friday against continued harassment from Israeli Forces when Palestinian farmers attempt to work their lands near the Separation Barrier. In 2004 Beit Ula organized weekly demonstrations against the construction of the barrier, which were usually met with intense repression from the Israeli military. In 2008, soldiers have handed several farmers orders claiming that 3,000 dunums of land near the barrier has been declared state land. Additionally, the army has destroyed a Palestinian well and several irrigation walls in the area, severely hindering farmers’ ability to provide food for their families.