Occupied Jerusalem (In Palestine Today)- Israeli occupation forces assaulted dozens of Palestinian protesters and activists today evening while they were demonstrating in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in Jerusalem in support of families who are facing imminent Israeli threat of eviction in the neighborhood.
The Israeli occupation forces physically assaulted the protesters and attacked them with teargas and pushed them away from the entrance of the neighborhood, which has been sealed by the occupation authorities for more than two weeks.
The forces also assaulted a number of journalists who were covering Israel’s violations against Palestinians, beaten and pushed them away.
Recently, the Israeli forces have erected a permanent checkpoint at the entrance to the neighborhood denying access of the Palestinian citizens to and out of the neighborhood.
The Palestinian residents of the neighborhood have limited their movements and are mostly staying at home, since if they leave the neighbourhood, Israeli forces sometimes will not allow them to return, claiming they have orders it is a military zone.
However, Israeli settlers are allowed to move freely. They move in groups of 20-25 together, armed, residents of the neighborhood said, as they taunt and try to provoke Palestinian residents.
Palestinian residents of the neighbourhood say they have been placed “under a siege” by Israeli authorities.
Israeli NGO Ir Amim said in a Wednesday statement that for about two weeks, Israeli occupation forces cordoned off the Kerem Al’ajoni section, or the eastern part of Sheikh Jarrah, where hundreds of Palestinians under threat of forced expulsion live.
Since May 14, the closure has intensified with entry of supporters of Palestinian residents banned because of “the so-called risk of clashes”, but these restrictions are not imposed on supporters of Israeli settlers living there, Ir Amim said.
“The closure of the neighbourhood is seen as an intentional brazen move by the Israeli authorities to suppress Palestinian mobilisation and deprive the residents of Sheikh Jarrah of the freedom of expression and the right to protest against their forced displacement,” Ir Amim said.
Palestinian families are living inside “a cordoned-off military-like zone. They are subject to ongoing arbitrary harassment and aggressive police measures, marked by forced entry into homes and the use of stun grenades, skunk water, and rubber-tipped bullets against neighbourhood residents”.
Sheikh Jarrah has been cited as one of the most issues sparked attention and condemnation around the world, as several countries slammed Israeli occupation forces and settlers violence against Palestinians in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood, calling ‘Israel’ to cease evictions and violence, including the US, Egypt, Belgium, Russia, and Turkey.