In the early morning hours of Wednesday, 1 July, as organizers in Palestine prepare for demonstrations in Ramallah, Bethlehem, Wadi Ara, Gaza and elsewhere to confront Israeli annexation schemes targeting Palestinian land, Israeli occupation forces launched a series of arrest raids and enforced closures upon Palestinian civilians in the occupied West Bank of Palestine.
Israeli occupation forces invaded a number of Palestinian cities, including Ramallah, Nablus, Tulkarem and Salfit, attempting to impose a closure throughout the West Bank and lock down even further Palestinians’ already-denied right to free movement.
In response, Samidoun Network in occupied Palestine emphasized in a statement that these widespread arrest raids and invasions will not terrorize the Palestinian people and reflect instead the confusion in the ranks of the occupation forces. Samidoun Palestine urged the need to respond to the closures by organizing local actions in villages, refugee camps and cities as well as participating broadly in the mass actions in Ramallah, Bethlehem, Wadi Ara and the Gaza Strip.
Among those targeted for Israeli abduction are Palestinian students. Alia Abu Hajla, a student at Bir Zeit University, was seized from her family home in occupied Ramallah in the pre-dawn hours of the morning.
Fellow Bir Zeit University student, Amjad Ahed Samhan, a former political prisoner for his student activities, was also seized by Israeli occupation forces.
This came shortly after Israeli occupation forces abducted Hanin Nassar, campaigner for Palestinian political prisoners and the wife of imprisoned Palestinian Rami Fadayel, also in the dawn hours of Wednesday, 1 July. They were three of at least 24 Palestinians seized by occupation forces throughout occupied Palestine.
These arrest raids came less than a day after Salah Hamouri, French-Palestinian lawyer and former political prisoner who has faced repeated attacks and continued repression – including the forced separation of his family through the exclusion of his wife and child from Palestine – was abducted by Israeli occupation forces on 30 June in Jerusalem. He was seized from a medical center, which he had visited to receive a mandatory coronavirus test in preparation to travel to France. His flight to France was booked for Saturday, 4 July.
The Committee of Support for Salah Hamouri issued an urgent call for action for his release, demanding the French government take action to free their citizen from further political detention by the Israeli regime. In 2017, he was seized and held for 13 months in administrative detention – imprisonment without charge or trial. This also took place just days before a planned trip to France to see his wife and son.
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network echoes the call of our comrades in Palestine to meet this repression with greater action and mobilization. Over 100 cities are organizing events and actions as part of the call to resist annexation and colonization in Palestine, especially on the 1 July Day of Rage. We urge the immediate release of Alia Abu Hajla, Amjad Samhan, Hanin Nassar, Salah Hamouri and all Palestinian prisoners detained by the Israeli occupation. These arrest raids and closures highlight – perhaps, more than ever – the urgency of widespread participation in all of these events and actions, from New York to Los Angeles to Boston, Toronto, Madrid, Amsterdam, Athens, Istanbul, Berlin and elsewhere.
No to annexation, no to Zionism! Palestine will be free, from the river to the sea!