Israeli soldiers fired into the air and heaved tear gas canisters as Arab youths in the West Bank town of Nablus threw stones at them on Wednesday (8 December).
NABLUS: GV PAN FROM: armoured car and troops to soldier searching truck.
GV: children throwing stones at soldiers.
GV: soldiers in street with youths hurling rocks. (2 shots)
GV TILT DOWN FROM: mosque TO fire in street.
GV: troops advancing in armoured vehicles.
GV PAN ACROSS: area filled with tear gas with demonstrators in background
SV: woman on crutches along street.
GV PULL OUT TO SV shattered windscreen with cameraman filming.
GV: troops taking away injured boy on jeep.
CU: sign Hebron
GV PAN: food stalls in front of locked shops.
SV PAN: people outside closed shops.
CU: Padlock PAN TO padlock.
GV: people along street
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Background: Israeli soldiers fired into the air and heaved tear gas canisters as Arab youths in the West Bank town of Nablus threw stones at them on Wednesday (8 December).
SYNOPSIS: The soldiers arrived in full force to break up a demonstration in Nablus against occupation policies on the troubled West Bank of Jordan. The latest issue there is about he imposition of an Israeli value-added tax which went into effect in Israel last July. Arab children were out throwing rocks at the soldiers in support of local shopkeepers who kept their stores closed in protest.
The unrest in the occupied West Bank towns follows violent riots earlier this year. In August there were demonstrations and strikes by shopkeepers about the same tax, Israeli border police have been firm in their approach but careful about their image. The israeli government has been anxious to improve its image to the outside world in connection with the West Bank. However, this did not prevent the usual volleys of tear gas being thrown.
Most residents of Nablus kept out of the trouble area. A group of about 80 to 120 youths, mainly students, were involved in the stone throwing and burning of tyres.
In Hebron, the other major town on the West Bank, shopkeepers also kept their premises closed in protest. The strike entered its fourth day on Thursday (9 December). The shopkeepers maintain the imposition of the VAT is illegal. The Mayor of the town said that shoppers did not accept the tax because it is a levy according to the Geneva Convention and this made illegal.
But not all the shopkeepers there agree with the strike. At a meeting of the chamber of commerce, the merchants complained that Hebron was one of the only towns to close its shops and said they would reopen on Friday (10 December) unless the rest of the region joined the strike. israel wants to impose the eight per cent tax because of the extensive trade between the two sides. But West Bank residents consider themselves governed by Jordanian law.