Activists steadfast as Bab al-Shams violently evicted by Israeli soldiers – ‘We will not remain silent as Israel continues to build Jewish-only colonies on our land’

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Israeli soldiers raiding Bab al-Shams. (Photo: Babalshams Facebook page)

Shortly before 3 AM, hundreds of Israeli cops and soldiers staged a raid on the newly founded Palestinian village of Bab Alshams (Gate of the Sun), violently evicting its 150 inhabitants. Use of police brutality is even more objectionable in light of the passive resistance offered by the residents. No arrests were made, and all persons detained were released shortly after.

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(Photo: Babalshams Facebook page)

In light of harsh international criticism over the plan to expand the Ma’aleh Edomim settlement, and in an attempt to draw away attention from the case, eviction took place early this morning. Following its arrival at the scene, a massive police force began by removing journalists from the residents’ immediate surroundings and proceeded to drag people away, beating some of them. Six Palestinians later required medical care at the Ramallah Hospital.

Following his release, Mohammed Khatib of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee said, “We will not remain silent as Israel continues to build Jewish-only colonies on our land. Bab Alshams is no more, but during its short days it gave new life and energy to all who passed through it. Israel continues to act in violation of every imaginable law and human decency. In establishing Bab Alshams we declare that we have had enough of demanding our rights from the occupier – from now on we shall seize them ourselves.”

Last night the state appealed to the High Court to withdraw an injunction prohibiting the eviction. The state argued, among other things, that the very existence of the village may occasion rioting, despite its remote and isolated location. The state further argued that the village was established by the Committees to Resist the Wall (a body which does not exist), also behind a blockade of Route 443 in October 2012. This claim, backed only by an affidavit signed by an Israeli police chief, has never been supported by any indictments or arrests for the questioning of individuals.

The village of Bab Alshams was established last Friday by Palestinian activists, on privately owned Palestinian lands, in an area between East Jerusalem and the settlement of Ma’aleh Edomim, which Israel refers to as E1. After the acceptance of Palestine as a non-member state to the UN, Israel announced the approval of a plan to expand the Ma’aleh Edomim settlement by building some 4,000 residential units in this area. Such construction would effectively bisect the West Bank and effectively cutting it off from Jerusalem.

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(Image: Sixteen Minutes to Palestine)
About Popular Struggle Coordination Committee

The Popular Struggle Coordination Committee was formed by prominent activists in the popular committees from all over the Occupied Territories and across the Palestinian political spectrum. Popular committees present a unique form of community based organizing and resistance in the tradition of the first Palestinian Intifada.

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3 Responses

  1. Kathleen
    January 13, 2013, 10:56 am

    Shameful and criminal that Palestinians are removed once again from their own lands. Clearly the Israeli government did not want “six days” to go by without illegally evicting the Palestinians and the chance that some brave talking head might pick the story up. Certainly not the phony human rights Rachel Maddow, Al Sharpton etc. They would never have touched this human rights story. Have to be gay or black for them to pick up these human rights violations.

    Where is the private Palestinian land owner that these folks had received permission to build their village on. Would seem this would be a case for the courts. The International Courts

  2. Mndwss
    January 13, 2013, 12:57 pm

    The Jewish state is trying to make me anti-Jewish or anti-zionist or anti-semittic or whatever they call it…

    They are trying to make me hate them.

    And they are very good at that…

    But i will resist.

    I will not hate the haters…

  3. Robert Naiman
    January 13, 2013, 10:20 pm

    This was a great action.

    – I hope they do it again.
    – I hope people set up #BabalShams support committees.
    – I hope people set up #BabalShams tents in front of Israeli embassies and consulates and public buildings around the world.
    – I hope people carry the slogan #BabalShams in the upcoming demonstrations in DC, like

    “Stop Israeli settlements! #BabalShams”
    “Free Palestine! #BabalShams”
    “No blank check for Israel! #BabalShams”

    Maybe some people who see those signs would think to themselves, I wonder what #BabalShams is? and look it up on their smartphones.

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