Resistance and Ramadan at Qalandiya: A Boy’s Tears for Al-Aqsa Mosque (PHOTOS)

A boy breaks into tears as Israeli soldiers wouldn’t allow him and his family to reach Al-Aqsa for prayer. (Photo: Tamar Fleishman, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Tamar Fleishman

I spent the first Friday of Ramadan at the Israeli military checkpoint of Qalandiya.

Despite earlier claims by a spokesman for the Israeli military that Israel will be easing restrictions on Palestinians during the holy month, in reality, nothing has changed. The soldiers behaved exactly as they did before – rude, inhumane and aggressive. 

Yet the restrictions that were meant to block Palestinians from traveling within their own cities and from reaching Al-Aqsa Mosque in Occupied East Jerusalem for prayer did not prevent a seemingly endless stream of people from trying anyway. 

Racist comments made by Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, on March 19, that “there is no such thing as a Palestinian people” didn’t seem to matter here. They do exist – worship, resist, live, and love as they have done for many generations. 

Of the numerous touching scenes at the checkpoint, a particular one remained with me: a little boy who broke into tears because Israeli soldiers wouldn’t allow him and his family to reach Al-Aqsa for prayer. 

(Translated by Tal Haran, Edited by The Palestine Chronicle) 

– As a member of Machsomwatch, Tamar Fleishman documents events at Israeli military checkpoints between Jerusalem and Ramallah. Her reports, photos and videos can be found on the organization’s website: She is also a member of the ‘Coalition of Women for Peace’ and a volunteer in ‘Breaking the Silence’. Tamar Fleishman is The Palestine Chronicle correspondent at the Qalandiya checkpoint.


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