US citizen in critical condition; four others wounded by Israeli fire in Ni'lin
Ramallah – Ma’an – Israeli soldiers critically wounded an American peace activist after launching a tear-gas canister at his head and shot four Palestinians with rubber-coated bullets in the West Bank village of Ni’lin, west of Ramallah, on Friday.
“He had a large hole in the front of his head, and his brain was visible,” one protester said of the injuries to the American activist.
Dozens of others choked on tear gas at an otherwise peaceful demonstration against the Israeli separation wall. The protest is a weekly event attended regularly by international peace activists, many affiliated with the International Solidarity Movement.
Demonstrators marched through the streets of Ni’lin toward the Israeli separation wall chanting slogans calling for Palestinian national unity and for resistance to the occupation. Then “the Israeli soldiers attacked the peaceful demonstration using rubber-coated bullets gas and stun grenades.”
The coordinator of the anti-wall Popular Committee in the village, A’hed Al- Khawaja, added, “Four were injured [and] others choked after inhaling gas.”
ater in the day the AP reported that one ISM activist, Tristan Anderson of Oakland, California, was in critical condition at a Tel Aviv hospital. The agency quoted one hospital official as saying “he's in critical condition, anesthetized and on a ventilator and undergoing imaging tests.”
According to Teah Lunqvist, another protestor, "Tristan was shot by the new tear-gas canisters that can be shot up to 500 meters."
“I ran over as I saw someone had been shot, while the Israeli forces continued to fire tear-gas at us. When an ambulance came, the Israeli soldiers refused to allow the ambulance through the checkpoint just outside the village. After five minutes of arguing with the soldiers, the ambulance passed," she said.
In 2003 Rachel Corrie, another ISM peace activist, was crushed by a bulldozer as she stood protecting the home of a Palestinian family from Israeli demolition.