Palestinians in West Bank mark Land Day with demonstrations

Source: Xinhua| 2018-03-30 23:09:26|Editor: Chengcheng
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Palestinians take part in a protest along the Israel border with Gaza, demanding the right to return to their homeland, on the 42nd Anniversary of the Palestinian Land Day, in Gaza City, on March 30, 2018. (Xinhua/Wissam Nassar)

RAMALLAH, March 30 (Xinhua) -- Hundreds of Palestinians took part in popular mass marches in Ramallah and other West Bank towns Friday, marking the 42nd national Land Day protesting the Israeli land grab policy and its attack against Palestinians.

Dozens were injured as the Israeli forces threw gas bombs and fired rubber-coated bullets and live bullets towards Palestinian demonstrators.

Demonstrators said they will continue to organize protest activities in the coming weeks, in rejection of the U.S. position towards Jerusalem, especially that it intends to move its embassy to the city on the eve of Israel's Independence Day, which Palestinians mark as Nakba, meaning catastrophe, where two thirds of the Palestinian people were forcibly displaced from their hometowns.

Member of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Mustafa Barghouti told Xinhua that this day highlights Palestinian people's commitment to peaceful resistance, adding that the Israeli forces reaction towards demonstrators is "dangerous."

He added that Palestinians are unified in one struggle, "but more than that, it's a glorious day for non-violent popular resistance."

Israeli military forces opened fire including live ammunition and rubber coated bullets towards demonstrators, according to medics.

Barghouti accused Israeli forces of carrying out a war crime against Palestinians, saying "they're using military force against popular non-violent peaceful resistance against peaceful demonstrators."

On March 30, 1976, Israeli soldiers killed six unarmed Palestinians during demonstrations in protest of an Israeli decision to confiscate thousands of acres of lands in the Galilee and the Negev areas.

Since then, Palestinians have designated this day to mark the sacrifices of the Palestinian people's lives in defending their lands, through planting trees and various activities that highlight their respect for their lands.

The last round of U.S. sponsored negotiations between Palestine and Israel was ended after nine months of talks without achieving any breakthrough.

On Dec. 6, 2017, Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and ordered the U.S. state department to move embassy from Tel Aviv to the city.

As a result, Palestinians disqualified the United States from being the sole sponsor of the peace negotiations with Israel and called for an international multilateral peace mechanism.

On Feb. 20, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas presented a peace initiative in a speech before the UN Security Council, proposing to hold an International peace conference mid-2018 to jumpstart final status negotiation based on two state solution and international legitimacy resolutions.

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KEY WORDS: 42nd national Land Day