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16 arrested at Gaza solidarity rally in Haifa

July 19, 2014 1:24 A.M. (Updated: July 19, 2014 10:39 A.M.)
HAIFA (Ma'an) -- Israeli police arrested 16 Palestinian citizens of Israeli after they took part in a rally in solidarity with Gaza in the northern Israeli city of Haifa.

The rally began at Abbas street halfway up Mount Carmel and continued towards the German Colony in central Haifa, before protesters were stopped by Israeli police on horseback and riot police.

Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samari said that protesters closed Ben Gurion Street for several minutes and refused to abide by police orders, leading to the arrests.

They were removed from the street and a number of police officers were lightly wounded in the process, she said, confirming that 16 were arrested.

Organizers of the rally said that among the detainees were Suheil Abu Ahmad, Joel Elias, Yasir Shawahna, Anas Elias, Hassan Safadiya, Sahir Jeries, Marcel Kayyal, Mutasem Zidan, Alaa Taha, Zakariya Muhareb, Amir Jabarin, and Amir Murshi.

Four others were detained but not yet identified.

Although the majority of Palestinians were expelled from their homes inside Israel during the 1948 conflict that led to the creation of the State of Israel, some Palestinians managed to remain in their villages and their descendants today make up around 20 percent of Israel's population.

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