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Three injured, 15 Bedouins arrested over land confiscation protest

Sept. 23, 2009 2:23 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 25, 2009 5:36 P.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - Fifteen Bedouins were arrested on Wednesday near the Beersheba-area Goral Junction, according to the Hebrew-language newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth.

The paper said the Bedouin arrestees were trying to stop work by the Jewish National Fund, a pro-Israel corporation owned by the World Zionist Organization, on land they said was privately owned by local residents.

Two Bedouins were hurt by tear gas, the paper said, as well as a police officer who suffered light injuries. Israel's Magen David Adom ambulance service treated the three, it added.

The report said dozens of locals attended the demonstration that police claimed became violent. Police said they and some of the JNF operatives were assaulted during the protest, according to the newspaper.

It was not the first time the local population has objected to the semi-governmental organization's efforts in the Negev, and that "several violent incidents" had occurred recently.
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