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Iraq Burin: Demo - Fire near the Olive Grove

Iraq Burin is well-known for its popular resistance against the land occupation policy of Israel. Since 2009, the residents of the small village from the West Bank gather every Saturday to defend their village against the violent attacks of the settlers from the neighboring Bracha settlement, and to raise their voice against the occupation of the village land, which they cannot access.

MPT, together with other internationals, participated in the demonstration Saturday, the 22nd of May. The demonstrators marched toward the top of the hill chanting and waving flags. The small number of demonstrators had to face more than a dozen members of the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF), who were lined up at the top of the hill.

For several minutes, perhaps ten or fifteen, nothing happened, only the encouraging voices of the supporters could be heard who were watching the events from the other hillside. A protester told MPT that the soldiers told the demonstrators that if they did not throw rocks, they, the soldiers, would not fire tear gas at them. No rocks were thrown for some time, but then suddenly some rocks were thrown by the protesters, but from too great a distance and uphill to cause any kind of injury to the army. The IOF did not wait long to shoot the tear gas canisters and what sounded like rubber-coated steel bullets at the demonstrators. One young boy was injured in his arm by a tear gas canister and was taken to the hospital with some of his peers.

The Israeli military continued to shoot several tear gas canisters at the demonstrators, forcing them to spread out across the hillside. The hot gas canisters caused a fire in the dry grass and protesting activists were forced to stop the demonstration to prevent the flames from spreading to the olive groves.
After the fire was stopped, the demonstration ended with the personal satisfaction of the demonstrators. It may seem that the IOF "behaved" better than usual in this demonstration, but the villagers never know how violent they may become and when.

[Please view recent blogs below on MPT in Iraq Burin]

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