+972’s live blog follows November 30 ‘Day of Rage’ protests against the Prawer-Begin Plan, which if implemented, will forcefully displace tens of thousands of Bedouin living in the Negev desert.
By Activestills, +972 Magazine staff
Bedouin, Palestinian and Israeli activists staged a ‘Day of Rage’ against the Prawer Plan Saturday afternoon, holding rallies and protests throughout Israel and Palestine, with international solidarity protests taking place in cities across the world.
The central protest took place outside the Bedouin town of Hura in the Negev desert. Over 1,000 Arab and Jewish protesters arrived from all over Israel, calling to stop the Prawer Plan, which if passed, will displace tens of thousands of Bedouin, who are citizens of the state.
Protesters were met by dozens of armored and mounted riot police who confined the protest in a barricaded area tens of meters back from the main road.
Younger protesters attempted to breach the police barricades but elder demonstrators, including several Arab members of Knesset, pleaded with them and for a while prevented them from doing so.
Clashes eventually broke out and police used tear gas, foul-smelling water cannons and mounted, undercover and uniformed riot police officers to disperse the crowd. As youth threw stones, riot police charged into the crowd, arresting at least 15 activists, including at least one child (will update as numbers come in). Clashes continued for some time as Bedouin youth blocked the main road with burning tractor tires.
UPDATE (7:40 p.m.): Police were reportedly using rubber-coated steel bullets to push the remaining protesters who were still blocking the main road back into the town of Hura, arresting four. Other protesters made their way to a Negev police station where they were demanding the release of those who were arrested.
In the West Bank, several dozen protesters marched from Ramallah toward the encroaching settlement of Beit El. Settlement security officers fired live ammunition in the air and Israeli soldiers used tear gas to drive the protesters back toward the Jalazoun refugee camp. Three Palestinian protesters were arrested and reportedly beaten by the soldiers.
— Diana A. (@Pal_vegan) November 30, 2013
In the Gaza Strip, roughly 100 people gathered in Palestine Square (al-Saha) to protest the plan to displace Bedouin in the adjacent Negev desert.
Elsewhere, solidarity protests took place in Berlin, London, Rome, Istanbul and Belgium.
— Abir Kopty (@AbirKopty) November 30, 2013
Protests in Haifa and Jerusalem began at around 4:30 p.m. local time. Around 100 people gathered at Herod’s Gate (Bab a-Zahara), where Israeli border police awaited them.
Update (8 p.m.): Police reported that 15 people were arrested in Haifa and that a police officer was stabbed and lightly wounded.
Update (9:20 p.m.): Dozens gather at Jaffa’s Clock Tower to protest against the arrests of demonstrators across the country. Approximately 30 demonstrators were arrested in the Negev protest, all of whom are still in police custody. The three Palestinians arrested in the Ramallah demonstration have been released.