Monday, April 26, 2004

Gila Svirsky writes:


I just spoke to Molly Malekar on her way to Sha'arei Tzedek Hospital in
Jerusalem, and here is what she reported:

"We were about 60 women, only women: roughly 1/3 Israeli, 1/3
Palestinian, and 1/3 internationals. We gathered at Bidu to protest the
construction of the wall in this village. It was a quiet march, with
women carrying signs and walking toward the area where soldiers were
guarding the construction of the fence. At a distance of about 10
(30 feet) from them, we stopped walking because the soldiers turned to
point their rifles directly at us. I called out to them in Hebrew, "Don't
shoot, we're not armed, this is a nonviolent demonstration." Suddenly
there was an onslaught of teargas and stun grenades, falling all around
us, completely out of proportion to the quiet, nonprovocative nature of
our action. The grenades fell right there at our feet and we were
choking, unable to breathe. Most dispersed and ran back. Soldiers
charged toward us and fell upon the women, grabbing some whom they
arrested. By then, there was no demonstration at all, nothing to
disperse. Most of the women had run back, trying to recover from the
gas, but I remained as I wanted to talk to the soldiers to prevent the
arrest of the four women. Suddenly out of nowhere four horses
with border police mounted on them. I started to run away, but one of
them ridden by a girl soldier caught up with me and she struck me on
head with a baton. I fell, and then a second horse charged toward me
I felt more blows on my head and back. There was no provocation
whatsoever at any point while this was happening."

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