Palestinian students clash with Israeli police

2015-11-02 22:03
Palestinians carry the body of Mahmoud Sabaaneh during his funeral in the West Bank village of Qabatiya. (Majdi Mohammed, AP)

Palestinians carry the body of Mahmoud Sabaaneh during his funeral in the West Bank village of Qabatiya. (Majdi Mohammed, AP)

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Abu Dis - Israeli border police stormed a university Monday in the occupied West Bank after clashes with Palestinian students protesting against Israel's separation barrier and recent Palestinian deaths.

Israel began building the barrier of walls and fences inside the West Bank in 2002 at the height of the second Palestinian intifada, or uprising, saying it was crucial for security.

The Palestinians see it as a land grab aimed at stealing part of their future state and call it the "apartheid wall."

The clashes erupted after Palestinian students at Al-Quds University in Abu Dis gathered at the foot of the barrier separating the town from Jerusalem to demonstrate against Israeli measures.

At least one protester used a sledge hammer to strike the wall as others milled around carrying Palestinian flags or covering their faces with traditional keffiyeh scarfs.

The students then pulled back into the campus and rained stones on the Israeli border police who approached the gates.

Israeli forces retaliated by firing rubber bullets, tear gas and stun grenades before forcing open the gates of the university and going inside.

"The policemen entered firing grenades left and right," one of the students told AFP.

"They fired at us with rubber bullets, aiming for the torso and the head," he added, declining to be identified.

The number of wounded was not immediately clear.

Third intifada

But Palestinian medics said many people were hit by rubber bullets and injured in the upper parts of their bodies, while many others suffered from smoke inhalation due to tear gas.

The clashes follow weeks of Palestinian-Israeli violence that has raised fears of a third intifada.

Nine Israelis, 68 Palestinians and an Arab Israeli have been killed in the surge of unrest which erupted at the beginning of October in Jerusalem.

Around half of the Palestinians who have died were killed while attacking, or trying to attack, Israelis.

One of the students who protested on Monday said it was in response to the high number of Palestinian deaths in recent weeks.

"Many people lost their lives for their country, for their nation and for the intifada. So, we decided to do our best to oppose the separation wall. It is our responsibility," said Amanda Manasra.

Read more on:    palestine  |  israel

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