Saturday, 13 February 2010
Palestinian Bil'in weekly demonstration reenacts the Avatar film
The village of Bil'in reenacted James Cameron's new film Avatar during todays weekly demonstration. Five Palestinian, Israeli and international activists were painted blue, with pointy ears and tales, resembling the Avatar characters. Like Palestinians, the Avatars fight imperialism, although the colonizers have different origins. The Avatars presence in Bil'in today symbolizes the united resistance to imperialism of all kinds.
Todays non-violent demonstration was again met with excessive violence by the Israeli army. Sound bombs and tear gas were used, leaving four people directly injured by the canisters. The canisters were shot directly at the protesters, which is in violation with the IDFs firing regulations. Many other activists suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Before coming to Bil'in, Israeli activists reported that police were present at their carpool meeting point. Their IDs were checked and some cars reported they were followed by the police. At the Rantis checkpoint, they were delayed once more and activists were obliged to continue their journey by taxi.
Bil'in has reason to celebrate this week. Yesterday, preparations for the construction of the new Wall began, which returns 30 per cent of Bil'ins land to the village. Iyad Burnat, Head of the Bil'in Popular Committee speaks of a victory: We feel relieved and feel the non-violent resistance is successful in its aim. Nevertheless, we will continue our struggle against the occupation as Bil'in still has another 30 per cent of land that is confiscated by Israel.
Next week Bil'in will have a special demonstration, celebrating five years of non-violent resistance and expects a large number of demonstrators. Bil'in calls for all its supporters to invite people to join in next weeks demonstration.