AFP
Last updated: October 19, 2011

Israeli and Palestinian women demonstrate for state

Several hundred Palestinian and Israeli women demonstrated on Saturday on each side of Israel's Qalandiya checkpoint, the main passage point between Jerusalem and the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Assembling nearly a week ahead of a Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations Security Council, the women all gathered under the slogan "Women want an independent Palestine".

They came from Ramallah, headquarters of the Palestinian Authority, from east Jerusalem, the Arab sector of the Holy City, and from Bethlehem on the West Bank.

"In the spirit of social demonstrations which have swept through Israel this summer, Israeli and Palestinian women demonstrate today in favour of social justice for the two nations, and for freedom from oppression and humiliation," according to the Israeli anti-colonialisation movement Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement.

"After two decades of failed negotiations, it is time that the international community, including Israel recognise Palestine as an independent state alongside Israel," the group said.

The demonstrations were watched by Israeli soldiers who confirmed that no arrests were made.

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