Peaceful Land Day March in Huwara Explodes in Violence as Unprovoked Occupation Forces Attack

Peaceful Land Day March in Huwara Explodes in Violence as Unprovoked Occupation Forces Attack

In villages across the occupied West Bank as well as inside the green line, Palestinians gathered to commemorate the 39th anniversary of Land Day.   Palestinians mark Land Day on March 30 to commemorate the events which took place in 1976, when the Israeli government announced a plan to expropriate thousands of dunams of land for security and settlement purposes.

In Huwara, nearly 200 gathered to plant olive tree saplings, hear speakers and to hold a peaceful Land Day march when suddenly, unprovoked Occupation Forces and Israeli Border Police began to rapid fire 45 stun grenades and numerous tear gas bombs indiscriminately into the gathered crowd which included children and the elderly.

Peaceful Land Day Commemoration in Huwara explodes in unprovoked Israeli violence.

Peaceful Land Day Commemoration in Huwara explodes in unprovoked Israeli violence.

A Palestinian man injured from a fired stun grenade fell helplessly in the streets, yet Border Police continued to fire numerous others quickly around him.  Marchers were chased, attacked, beaten and dragged from a building they had run into seeking shelter from the screaming and firing soldiers and police forces.

Land Day Commemoration Attendees Run for Safety from clouds of tear gas.

Land Day Commemoration Attendees Run for Safety from clouds of tear gas.

Israeli forces then forced shop owners to close their businesses as they continued the attack and held presence in the streets.

IWPS members rushed to Al Watani Hospital where six of the injured were being treated, reportedly suffering from gas inhalation issues- one who was sprayed directly in the face by pepper gas.  Three of the six were admitted in-patient after suffering complications from pre-existing heart conditions which were aggravated by the violent and unexpected offensive at what was, up until that moment, a peaceful gathering.  Several others were brought to Rafidia Hospital for treatment.

A Palestinian man recovers in the hospital after becoming overwhelmed by the dozens of tear gas grenades fired by Israeli Occupation Forces.

A Palestinian man recovers in the hospital after becoming overwhelmed by the dozens of tear gas grenades fired by Israeli Occupation Forces.