Quiet Deir Istiya Under Israeli Army Attack – And Deir Istiya Resists
UPDATE 22 August: In the last few weeks the Israeli army has kidnapped 14 young men from Deir Istiya and injured several more. The main road to the village remains closed, but residents of Deir Istiya are now using an alternative route through the olive groves.
Since the Israeli occupation army closed off the main entrance to Deir Istiya on 22 July, people of the village have successfully opened it twice. They would use their bare hands or shovels in fear that a bulldozer might be confiscated by the army were the villagers to use it; they would only open a passage large enough for one car, in order not to attract the unwanted attention of Israeli military and settler vehicles constantly passing by. There are also concrete blocks underneath the rubble that require special machinery to be moved.
However, despite Deir Istiya’s efforts, the Israeli army would come back the next day or two days later and put up their barricades again, restricting the Palestinians’ freedom of movement that is guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The village would essentially remain almost closed off; such actions constitute collective punishment, which is prohibited under international law.
As the army closed the road, they also kidnapped two young men from Deir Istiya and were looking for a third one who was not at his house during the kidnap attempt.
Several weeks prior to this, illegal Israeli settler-colonists opened fire at two young boys of Deir Istiya as they were walking home for the Iftar (Muslim break of fast during the holy month of Ramadan). The boys managed to escape deadly fire but were deeply traumatized.
In response to such provocations, the shabab (local youth) of Deir Istiya started confronting the Israeli occupation army that was making numerous raids in their village. Clashes have erupted for several night in the past week.
Pictured below are the findings after one such night in Deir Istiya; they include live ammunition, steel rubber-coated bullets, and tear gas canisters.
Photo credit: Deir Istiya facebook page.