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Injuries as soldiers fire on Qalandiya protest

March 5, 2011 8:21 P.M. (Updated: March 7, 2011 1:33 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces violently shut down a demonstration led by women north of Jerusalem on Saturday, organizers said, injuring at least two women including an international activist.

Border police fired tear gas and rubber-coated bullets at the protesters marking International Women's Day at the Qalandiya checkpoint, south of Ramallah.

The event was organized by minister of social affairs Majida Al-Masri, a leader in the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and union officials from Hebron and Ramallah in the occupied West Bank.

It was not clear how many people were hurt, but union official Nehad Al-Akhras said a Swedish activist was seriously injured by a stun grenade which struck her in the face.

Witnesses said a Palestinian woman was taken to hospital after inhaling large amounts of tear gas.

Following her recovery, the 23-year old Swedish woman said she had been lightly injured and treated on the scene, for skin burns after being hit in the arm with a tear-gas canister fired from a high-velocity launcher.

The canister had singed her hair, she reported, and caused temporary deafness in one hear.

She said she intended to return to her work with the International Solidarity Movement as an activist.
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