Settlers launch sit-down strike in Jerusalem

Three months after Israel pulled out of the Gaza Strip and dismantled the 21 Jewish settlements there, settler leaders on Tuesday launched an open-ended sit down strike opposite the government compound in Jerusalem to protest the government "neglect" and obtuseness" in dealing with the thousands of forced Israeli evacuees. The demonstration, which got off to a slow start Tuesday morning with but a dozen participants in the huge white tent erected opposite the foreign ministry, was initiated by Zvi Slonim of the Eretz Israel Academy in the West Bank settlement of Kedumim, who said that the "shameful humiliation and cruelty to the evacuees" can no longer be stood for. "It does not matter if you were for or against the disengagement, people need to call upon the government to solve this problem because it is on its way to becoming a disaster," Slonim said Tuesday.