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Hundreds protest in solidarity with Gaza across West Bank
Published Friday 22/08/2014 (updated) 24/08/2014 10:35
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(MaanImages)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Hundreds took part in rallies across the West Bank on Friday in solidarity with the besieged Gaza Strip that were violently dispersed by Israeli forces.

At least two were injured in the marches, which took place in Kafr Qaddum, Beit Iksa, Masara, Bilin, and Nabi Saleh, in addition to an earlier march in Bethlehem where one Palestinian was also shot.

Kafr Qaddum

One Palestinian was struck in the head by a tear gas canister fired at high velocity by Israeli forces during clashes in Kafr Qaddum near Qalqiliya.

Dozens also suffered from tear gas inhalation after Israeli forces used it heavily in addition to foul-smelling Skunk water to disperse the protest in support of Gaza.

A tear gas canister hit a home and caused a fire in the nearby trees.

Protests are held every Friday in Kafr Qaddum against Israel's closure of a main road linking the village to its nearest city, Nablus, as well as against the Israeli occupation more generally.

Beit Iksa

A Palestinian was shot with a live bullet by Israeli soldiers after clashes broke out in Beit Iksa village northwest of Jerusalem.

Locals in the village said Laith Mansour was shot near a checkpoint in the village and suffered moderate injuries.

Clashes began in the village after noon, as protesters marched towards the village entrance and were met with tear gas and stun grenades by Israeli forces.

al-Masara

A weekly march in al-Masara village south of Bethlehem was also dispersed by Israeli forces.

The march set off from the center of the village to support Gazans as well as in support of the campaign to boycott Israeli products.

Protesters held Palestinian flags and chanted national songs, condemning Israeli "crimes against civilians" in Gaza as well as a deportation order given to West Bank-based Palestinian member of parliament Khalida Jarrar earlier in the week.

Since 2006, the residents of al-Masara have protested on a weekly basis, demanding Israeli authorities return village lands confiscated in order to build the separation wall as it crosses through their town.


Bilin

Clashes erupted between Israeli soldiers and protesters as more than 100 people marched in Bilin village west of Ramallah against the Israeli offensive on Gaza.

Dozens where suffocated by tear-gas canisters fired by Israeli soldiers to disperse the march, which was attended by dozens of international and Israeli activists against the occupation as well.

Since 2005, Bilin villagers have protested on a weekly basis against the Israeli separation wall that runs through their village on land confiscated from local farmers.

Previous protests by Bilin activists have forced the Israeli authorities to re-route the wall, but large chunks of the village lands remain inaccessible to residents because of the route.

Israel began building the separation wall in 2002, and the route has been the target of regular demonstrations by border towns whose land is cut off by its path.

Nabi Saleh

In Nabi Saleh, Israeli forces fired tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets to disperse protesters who tried to march towards lands confiscated by Israeli authorities.

Israeli forces also imposed a curfew on the village from the early morning and deployed dozens of soldiers in its surroundings as Israeli settlers visited a nearby spring on lands that were recently seized from the village.

The village is the site of weekly protests against the Israeli occupation, with residents demanding that lands confiscated by Israeli forces to build a nearby Jewish-only settlement be returned to them.

The internationally recognized Palestinian territories of which the West Bank and East Jerusalem form a part have been occupied by the Israeli military since 1967.
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