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Demonstrations against evictions of Palestinians to make way for Jewish settlers

By Donald Macintyre in Jerusalem

A Palestinian boy wearing toy handcuffs joins hundreds of protesters against Jewish settlements near Sheikh Jarrah in east Jerusalem yesterday. The demonstrations have become a weekly event

EPA/JIM HOLLANDER

A Palestinian boy wearing toy handcuffs joins hundreds of protesters against Jewish settlements near Sheikh Jarrah in east Jerusalem yesterday. The demonstrations have become a weekly event










At least 15 protesters were arrested yesterday as several hundred left-wing Israelis held their biggest demonstration yet against demolitions and evictions of east Jerusalem Palestinians designed to make way for Jewish settlers.

Police moved in to force back the noisy but largely peaceful protest in Sheikh Jarrah, the inner-city district that has rapidly become the main flashpoint of the struggle to prevent further government and local authority-approved inroads by settler groups in the city.

Organisers of the demonstration, which had been kept behind a police cordon at the entrance to one of the neighbourhood's residential streets, said that two Palestinians had been injured by stone-throwing settlers further along the road and beyond the barrier.

Continued settlement in the inner districts of east Jerusalem is regarded by the moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas as a central obstacle to resuming negotiations with Israel. Mr Abbas resisted fresh pressure to re-enter the talks during a three-hour meeting yesterday with US Middle East Envoy George Mitchell.

Israel insists it annexed the eastern Arab sector of Jerusalem after the Six-Day War in 1967, but this is rejected by most of the international community who see it as the capital of a future Palestinian state. According to UN figures, 194 people were forcibly displaced from their homes in east Jerusalem by evictions and demolitions in the first half of 2009 alone.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyhau has repeatedly – most recently when he talked to foreign journalists this week – insisted that he has no intention of halting settlement in east Jerusalem.

Yesterday's protest, the sixth of what has become a regular weekly event, was joined by prominent figures on the Israeli left, including Yossi Sarid, former leader of Meretz, and a prominent Haaretz columnist; Avraham Burg, a former Knesset speaker; the veteran human rights and political campaigner Uri Avnery; and Yariv Oppenheimer, former director of Peace Now.

Brandishing banners linking Jewish settlement with apartheid, some of the demonstrators chanted slogans like "No, no, fascism will not pass", "Don't despair Sheikh Jarrah, we will end the occupation" and "One two three four Occupation no more/five six seven eight, Israel is a fascist state."

While local Palestinian residents were largely absent from the protest, one Israeli demonstrator hoisted on to his shoulder a small Palestinian boy who had been watching the protest so that he could lead the crowd in an Arabic chant of "Sheikh Jarrah for the Palestinians; evacuate the settlers."

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good morning Israeli left... :)

Hamas left us ashamed and confused , about gaza.

good thing there is the west bank...

its amazing how easy it is to confuse us at the left.


for a second I felt like I was the onlly one left at the Israeli left
the Israeli left was quiet BC after we left Gaza Hamas started to shoot rockets .
land for peace was the left mantra... I think many in the left realized that even after the settlements will go we will still be at war ... but at least we will be at borders according to international law. that is some thing I believed in for many many years.

Ehud Barak was never left

and Ben artzi is not a not a really good example of what the Israeli left needs. even thou I supports him as an individual
I wish when we say the left it would mean not only banding together of the Israelis and arabs to make sure there is a Palestinian state and a transfer of those in the settlements but also against terrorist activities, propaganda, freedom of speech issues and national legitimacy for both Jews and Palestinians.

Why is it that when we say left, we only talk about one side of the conflict?
Hi basil I am a big supporter both of Burg and Yossi Sarid.

what we need to see is a public speech form a palestinian government that is unit . that the two state solutions the end of the conflict.


That's all... the day it will happen is the day we will have peace.

We need to put everything on the table , Jerusalem , refugees , the Israeli Arabs , and the borders.

And at least say exactly what both sides wants.

So far in Israel we see rockets from a land that we left. we saw the palestinians voting for hamas, we all read the hamas manifesto it is very hard for the left to say anything. although obviously the occupation is the bigger evil

I don't feel that we have anyone to talk with especially after 3 weeks in here,

it made it very clear no one is sirius about peace not even on a site that calls it self mepeace.

we need to stick to the international consensus and hope that something will happen before the next war.

the blaming game not only that is not pogresive it is boring. Israelis use to the fact that the world blames them for everything we really do not take the blamers seriously bc they are a fraud ,they are hypocrites . they are calling them self peace activists and they want war, they calling themself human right protector but they want to take rights. they claim to say the truth but they constantly lie.

Too many people blaming beroe they look at the mirror.. that will not bring peace ! it is a big fat joke.

I am very much afraid for what the next war will bring ,
Basil as I told you many times you are right.

It is my fault you can blame it on me, we can go in to a blame game again and I will tell you that hamas is not like the likud BC hamas started a war on the fatah, and you will tell me the fatah is corrupted and is supported by the CIA and Israel arrested the hamas government, and I will tell you that Hamas is supported by Iran ...and the all thing is way bigger then us .... but you know what forget about that its all my fault.

Just Please!! freaking tell me what you want... and please people stop saying that you want peace and security to all Arabs and Jews and rainbows and flowers.

It does no help... we all know what are the issues are..

Borders , Refugees, and Jerusalem .... just everybody cut to the chase.
so we will know if there is war or not.
"hamas started a war on the fatah"

++++ Sorry Ohad, but it was fatah who started that one. Not hamas.
Making good hummus is all about taking the husks off of the chick peas and the correct mix of tahini, garlic (fresh and roasted), and lemon juice.

Adding some finely crushed roasted cumin seeds is a good idea also.
Basil,

This events where we see Israelis demonstrations against occupation is important, as it signal out a voice existed in the Israeli society. this is part of the Israeli internal conflict one group with two state solution where two societies has healthy respectful relationship and other group focus only in Israeli/Jewish security and interests.

I would like to suggest that the Left in israel is less in vocal demonstration he is in the pools that drove Netanyahu and Ehud Barak to freeze the settlements and while their acts are critisized by the "right" who think it is not "Jewish" to remove settlements in WB and by the "left" who think it is just another trick aim for make to destroy the two-state option.

I think that "left" and "right" perspective are dangerous at this time and we need to take more sociological developmental view. see that the forces that create change are not personal and any peace will must include population that has "right wing" world view and "left wing" world view. the conflict within israel justifies the acts toward the Palestinians, because the inner conflict there are Israelis who are working to create settelment at freeze time, so they will destroy the Israeli government call for negotiation, and they succeed they manage to convince many of us that this is no way a path to peace, the convinced the Palestinian authority and actually strengthen the Hamas position ....

The Israeli internal conflict is what drive Israelis to show that the Arabs are terrorists and justify terror toward Arabs. the Settlers are attacking Arabs to show that Arabs are dangerous and hateful.

The Israeli left, by attacking the government and the current effort to change are playing to the hand of the "right" if the succeed we will have more rounds of violence and more confused and split palestinian society.

for the Palestinian internal conflict and how it flame the israeli palestinian conflict I invite Palestinian to describe.

we not needing "left activists" we need center practical people who care to create a future that include all of us,
Is this a news story or an opinion and advocacy piece? Fascists settlers?

Does The Independent ever use the label Fascist for Hamas or Hezbollah, or the Fatah extremists who are really more obviously and overly Fascist?

As this really is a partisan opinion piece, according to what I am told the current interpretation of the mepeace Guidelines are, this piece obviously belongs to the Uncategorised category.
It seems that on this peace site it is OK to refer to some Jews as Fascists whilst articles critical of "The Other Side" are either deep sixed or banished to "uncatogorised".

Consistently ethical moderation? I know! To question that invites banishment.
This "Fascists settlers" labels has called some jewish writers too. So do you call in that event such a action more or less nasty than non-jewish writers.....
"Paul, did you even read the article?"

++++ I once asked the same thing about that Goldstone report.

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