By Joseph Dana, josephdana.com/ – 11 May 2010
On Sunday, 23 May 2010, Ta’ayush activist Ezra Nawi will be jailed for a month for his protest against house demolitions in the Palestinian village of Um al-Chir (video of the action, below). As openly stated by his judge, the sentence is meant to deter him and others from such actions of protest. On the same day, there will be a protest in support of Ezra and to show commitment to the continuation of the protest against the occupation and the oppression of Palestinians. This protest will be organized by Ta’ayush and be held in Jerusalem.
Ezra Nawi has been active for years in the area known as South Mt. Hebron. The Palestinians in this small desolate area in the very south of the West Bank have been under Israeli occupation for almost 42 years; they still live without electricity, running water and other basic services, and are continuously harassed by the Jewish settlers who constantly violate both Israeli and International law, and are backed by a variety of Israeli military occupation forces, all of which operate in an effort to cleanse the area from its Palestinian inhabitants and create a new demographic reality in it.
In March 2009, the judge Eilata Ziskind of the Jerusalem Magistrate’s (“Peace”) Court found Ezra Nawi guilty of assaulting a police officer and participation in a riot during a house demolition of a tin shack in the West Bank Palestinian village of Um el-Hir in the South Hebron hills, back in 2007. Nawi protested against the demolition by lying in front of a bulldozer, and later running into the shack before its demolition. Although throughout the whole incident Ezra kept to his principle of non-violent protest, in the end, he found himself arrested and charged with the aforementioned accusations that eventually led to his conviction based on the sole testimonies of two police officers who claimed that Nawi attacked them inside the shack. In addition, the judge Ziskind ruled that Ezra’s behaviour exceeded the limits of legitimate protest and therefore convicted him of rioting.
For more information about Ezra please visit his website Support Ezra.