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Occupation magazine - Activism

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Hebron: MK Barakeh injured during a demonstration against occupation
Efraim Davidy
Communist Party of Israel
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Feb. 25, 2012

Thousands of Palestinians, Israelis and international peace activists, among them Palestinian and Israeli communists, rallied in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron on Friday, commemorating the anniversary of a deadly shooting in Hebron`s mosque. The protesters demanded the city`s main thoroughfare be reopened after Israeli forces shut it off shortly after extremist settler Baruch Goldstein killed 29 Palestinians at prayer.

Six demonstrators were arrested and another injured, one of whom was Hadash Chairman and leading communist activist, MK Mohammed Barakeh, who was hit in the leg by a stun grenade. Among the arrested activists: the coordinator of Youth Against Settlements Badie Al-Dweik, 39, and Palestinian activist Fadi Quran. Forces fired tear gas, sound grenades and foul-smelling chemicals at the demonstrators calling for the opening of Shuhada Street, a Ma`an correspondent said. Approximately 70 Palestinians and Israelis peace activists, including a paramedic, suffered suffocation from the chemicals, medics in the city`s Muhammad Alo Al-Muhtaseb hospital said. Shuhada Street was partially closed off to the Palestinian public some 18 years ago shortly after a Jewish extremist from a nearby settlement gunned down 29 Muslim worshippers at the Tomb of the Patriarchs, on February 25, 1994.
Six years later, the street was completely sealed off to public access at the outset of the second Palestinian Intifada, or popular uprising, which erupted in September 2000, with the military declaring it a `closed military zone.` `This demonstration is part of an international campaign to reopen Shuhada Street which is the main road to the Ibrahimi Mosque and many other stores and homes that are closed in the heart of Hebron,` organizer Issa Amr told AFP, using the Arab name for the Tomb of the Patriarchs. In a statement, organizers of the demonstration said they wanted to establish February 25 as an international day of struggle to reopen Shuhada Street. Medics say an another Palestinian protester died Friday during surgery after being shot during clashes with the Israeli army near Ramallah in the occupied West Bank. Talat Ramia, 25, suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and five others were injured, medics at the Palestine Medical Complex said. Ramia died during surgery, they said. Israeli forces were firing tear gas and both live and rubber bullets at protesters gathering near the Qalandia checkpoint after hearing rumors of a raid on a holy site in Jerusalem.

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