activists arrested in palestine after attempting to stop israeli forces firing live ammunition

by Tim Phillips

Vincent Mainville and Fabio Theodule are Swiss and Italian citizens, respectively. They were arrested by Israeli border police on Wednesday for attempting to stop Israeli forces who were firing live ammunition and tear gas canisters towards a group of Palestinian youth. The group was throwing stones towards the soldiers.

Israeli forces accused Mainville and Theodule of obstructing military action and attempting to assault a border police officer. They were left in handcuffs at a police station for more than three hours before they were allowed to contact legal representation. On Thursday, Mainville and Theodule were taken to an immigration center for deportation procedures to begin, effectively nullifying a judge’s subsequent ruling that they had been arrested illegally.

On Friday, Palestinian youth threw stones towards the military during a demonstration in Ni’lin. Israeli soldiers responded with live ammunition, tear gas canisters, and stun grenades. A 40-year-old Palestinian demonstrator was shot in the leg with live ammunition. According to a report from the International Solidarity Movement,

… Israeli military shot live ammunition against approximately thirty demonstrators who gathered around the annexation wall. … Israeli soldiers and Palestinians from Ni’lin clashed for more than two hours before the demonstrator was shot… Every Friday residents of Ni’lin gather to march towards the annexation wall in order to protest the loss of their stolen land.