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Dozens injured as Israeli forces suppress weekly marches

April 3, 2015 10:36 P.M. (Updated: April 6, 2015 1:33 P.M.)
QALQILIYA (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces injured dozens of Palestinian and foreign activists on Friday, including one with live fire, as they suppressed weekly marches across the West Bank.

In Kafr Qaddum near Qalqiliya, a Palestinian was hit with live fire and dozens more with rubber-coated steel bullets when Israeli soldiers dispersed the village's weekly march.

Majd Abu Khalid, 23, who was shot with live fire in his lower extremities, was taken to Rafidia hospital in Nablus in a moderate condition, while the others were treated on the scene.

Murad Shtewei, the coordinator for Kafr Qaddum's popular committee, told Ma'an that Israeli forces have sealed off entrances to the village since early on Friday morning and declared the village a closed military zone, preventing people and journalists from getting there.

He said Israeli forces had fired both live and rubber-coated steel bullets and used water canons as they dispersed the weekly protest.

Another Palestinian was injured and dozens more suffered excessive tear gas inhalation during clashes with Israeli forces at the weekly march in Bilin near Ramallah.

Popular resistance committee member, Kifah Mansour, 33, was shot twice in the leg with rubber-coated bullets after Israeli forces fired tear-gas canisters, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel bullets at protesters.

Mansour was taken to the Palestine Medical Complex for treatment.

Dozens of popular resistance activists, in addition to other local and international activists, are reported to have participated in the protest, raising Palestinian flags and chanting songs for unity.

Separately, the weekly protest in al-Ma'sara near Bethlehem was dispersed by Israeli forces, who declared the area a closed military zone.

Dozens of locals and international activists were marching to protest the arrest of lawmaker Khalida Jarrar, as well as to mark Palestine's 39th Land Day.

Witnesses said that Israeli forces positioned themselves at the entrance of the village and formed a barrier to prevent protesters from reaching their confiscated land.

They reportedly assaulted the protesters when they tried to pass, and prevented cars from entering or exiting the village.

Palestinian lawmaker and member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Khalida Jarrar was detained by Israeli forces from her home near Ramallah earlier this week for being the leader of an alleged 'terrorist organization.'

Israeli forces routinely suppress weekly marches by violent means.

In the last week there has been an upsurge of protests to mark Palestine's 39th Land Day, commemorating Palestinian protests against Israeli land seizures that were violently suppressed on Mar. 30, 1976.
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