Thousands of Jewish, Arab Israelis march in Tel Aviv against Arab home demolitions

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Thousands of Jewish and Arab Israelis marched in Tel Aviv against home demolitions in the Bedouin and Arab communities.

An estimated 5,000 people waving both Israeli and Palestinian flags participated in the Saturday night march organized by several liberal Jewish and Arab organizations, which ended in Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Square.

Amal Abu Sa’ad, the widow of Yakub Abu al-Kiyan, who was killed last month during the operation to demolish illegal homes in the unrecognized Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran in the Negev last month, told the protesters that: “All of you, who are standing here today, you are proof that Jews and Arabs can and want to live together and with equality.”

Lawmaker Ayman Odeh, the head of the Arab Joint List, said: “Thousands of people have come here today, Arabs and Jews, from all over the country to cry out against the government attack on the Arab population and to call for equality, recognition of the unrecognized villages, and in a demand to establish an official state commission of inquiry to examine all the events surrounding the brutal evacuation of Umm al-Hiran.”

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The protesters objected to how security forces acted during the evacuation of Umm al-Hiran compared with the treatment of West Bank settlers and their supporters in the Amona outpost.