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Rallies Support ISM by Palestinians and Israeli's


Rallies to Support ISM by Palestinians and Israeli's

Rafah

Today at 11:30AM Palestinians from the Palestinian Children's Parliament and the Progressive Palestinian Youth Union joined in solidarity with members from the International Solidarity Movement to protest the continued attacks on civilians by the Israeli army. Approximaely 200 protesters carried pictures of Rachel Corrie , Tom Hurndall and signs that read "Palestinians and Internationals are Targeted by the Israeli army". Simultaneously in Israel 20 ISM supporters gathered at the ministry of defense for avigil. They carried signs that read "I.S.M saves life", "Rachel Corrie - We won't forget and we won't forgive", and-"The Israeli occupation murders inoccents".

Before the march began in Rafah, a statement was read indicting the army and demanding an end to the shooting of civilians: an end to occupation, an end to house demolition and an end to the building of the security fence otherwise known as the apartheid wall. The march began at Al Awda square and moved down the main street in Rafah to the site in Yebnah where Tom Hurndall was shot ten days ago. Several people from the group then laid flowers on the place where Tom was shot. The activists and the community members were careful to stay out of line of fire from the tower. Those that ventured too far unknowingly were quickly told to move. Yebna is also the same area that was invaded by the Israeli army last weekend killing three adults, one child and losing one soldier.

Today's events were planned in response to the apparent targeting of internationals by the Israeli army. In just over one month, one ISM activist has been killed and two others citically injured by Israeli forces.On March 16, 2003 Rachel Corrie was killed when she was crushed by an American made bulldozer operated by an Israeli soldier. She was protecting the home of a doctor from demolition. On April 5, 2003 Brian Avery, twenty four years old, was shot in the face by an Israeli soldier in an Israeli Armored Personnel Carrier. He had his hands in the air and was clearly marked. On April 12, 2003 Tom Hurndall, twenty one years old, was shot in the head by an Israeli military sniper from a tower in Rafah. He was trying to move a child to safety from the sniper.

The International Solidarity Movement supports non-violent resistance to the illegal and brutal occupation of Palestine.

Palestinian activists have long been at risk of death, imprisonment and torture when they engage in acts of peaceful resistance. When internationals are present, that risk is somewhat reduced. But now the Israeli army is targeting international peace activists as well, violating international law and attempting to suppress all means of protest in the territories.

Tom Wallace ISM Media Coordinator Beit Sahour, Occupied Palestine

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