Hundreds of Jewish and Arab residents of Shaar Efraim, Qalansawe
and Nitzanei Oz protested against an environmental hazard
at the Qalansawe industrial zone on Sunday. Two demonstrators were arrested following clashes between the protesters and police officers.
The residents protested against the existence of a waste disposal site and plans to build polluting factories in the area.
During the demonstration, the protesters blocked Route 444 and waved signs which read "My house is not a dump site." Among the protesters were school students from Shaar Efraim.
The residents claim that the State has turned their region into "Israel's
backyard and one of the most polluted areas in the country." They hope to dissuade other entrepreneurs from setting up a cement factory that will increase pollution in the area.
They are claiming that in light of the region's windy climate, the factory would put the health of the residents at risk.
The residents further demanded that the Environmental Protection Ministry withhold the factory's permit until it meets the legal guidelines, halt construction demolish the structure and remove the illegal yard waste site.