A Palestinian man drives his car over a banner bearing US President Barack Obama’s image in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, on March 18, 2013.
Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:50PM GMT
Palestinians have held a demonstration in the occupied West Bank against the upcoming visit of US President Barack Obama and destroyed a banner bearing Obama’s image.
On Monday, they trampled on the banner, drove over it in cars, and then burned it in the West Bank city of Bethlehem.
On March 15, Palestinians in Ramallah, which hosts the headquarters of the Palestinian Authority, vandalized posters showing Obama.
Obama is scheduled to arrive in Israel on Wednesday, and is likely visit the occupied West Bank the following day.
Many Palestinians accuse the US president of following the path of his predecessors and unfairly favoring the Israeli regime.
They accuse Obama of not doing enough to stop Israel’s illegal settlement activities as well as the arbitrary arrest of Palestinians by Israeli troops.
In December 2012, Israeli officials said they would go ahead with plans to build several thousand more settler units on Palestinian territory, despite the opposition of the United Nations and the international community.
The presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine have created a major obstacle for the efforts to establish peace in the Middle East.
More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds in 1967.
The UN and most countries regard the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in a war in 1967 and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbids construction on occupied lands.