Monday, April 12, 2021

Palestinians in Israel protest after police kill two in southern Israel

By Editor - January 19, 2015
Section: [Main News]
Tags: [Negev Desert] [Palestinian citizens of Israel]

Medical team treating an injured mourner at the funeral of Sami al-Jaar. 

Protests spread across Palestinian communities inside Israel on Monday, as news spread of the death of a Palestinian Bedouin man killed late Sunday during the funeral of another man shot dead last week by Israeli police forces in southern Israel. 

Sami Ibrahim Zayadna, 45, suffocated after inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli police at mourners in the Palestinian Bedouin city of Rahat on Sunday, local media reported.  More than 40 others were injured during the clashes, including Rahat mayor Tala al-Qureinawi and Raed Saah, head of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel. 

The violent clashes began after Israeli police entered the Rahat cemetery as mourners were burying Sami al-Jaar, 22, who was shot dead last week while standing on the patio of his home. The young man had reportedly been watching clashes take place between Israeli police and local youth in the neighborhood. 

Despite an agreement with the Rahat municipality to stay clear of the funeral ceremony, Israeli police reportedly entered the graveyard and fired plastic-coated metal bullets and tear gas at mourners as the northern Islamic Movement’s chief, Raed Salah, attempted to deliver a eulogy.

“When I uttered the first sentence of the funeral oration a tear gas canister was fired in front of us. We thought it was fired accidentally, but showers of tear gas followed. It was clear they wanted to disperse the mourners before they could bid the martyr farewell and I think the officers on the ground were receiving instruction from the helicopter which was hovering above the mourners focusing its light on us,” Salah told Ma’an News Agency

Salah added that an Israeli police vehicle on the scene deliberately rammed into vehicles parked nearby the cemetery. 

The Higher Guidance Committee of Arab Residents of the Negev denounced the incident as “state terrorism.”

“We hereby tell the Israeli security organizations that your terror won’t scare us and we won’t hesitate to live in dignity despite your mean attempts and plans day and night to impose restrictions on us seeking to displace us. Save your bullets and your terror because we have already made our minds… we will stay here as long as there is thyme and olive oil,” the group said. 

In addition to the general strike announced in Rahat on Monday, a collective strike across all Palestinian towns and neighborhoods has been announced for Tuesday. 

Protests were held on Monday by activists in Haifa, Jaffa, Beersheba, Rahat and Nazareth, as well as by students at Tel Aviv University, Ben Gurion University and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

An estimated 1.7 million Palestinians carry Israeli citizenship and live in cities, towns and villages across the country. The diverse community of Muslims, Christians and Druze suffer from over 50 discriminatory laws that stifle their political expression and limit their access to state resources like land and education. 






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