HRR 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 74:

Summary of incident:

Defacto detainment at the checkpoint at the bridge between Mas’ha and Azawiya.

Incident details -

Date of report:- 29. December 2003

Time:- from 10:30 onwards

Place:- the checkpoint at the bridge between Mas’ha and Azawiya  (the only road between the two towns)

Witness:- 3 IWPS members (Karin, Alisa and Fatima) as well as the people from the cars that were waiting to get to their homes.

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

IWPS team members arrived at the checkpoint at 10pm after repeated calls from villagers saying that several had been waiting since 6pm to pass.  When we reached the checkpoint we had already liased with the Israeli District Cooperation Liaison (DCL) who told us that an order had already been issued to let everyone through.

When we arrived, we found 17 cars on the Mas’ha side in waiting in a queue at a distance up the hill from the actual checkpoint.  Some of the cars had old men, women and children in them.  No one was being let through.  According to accounts by waiting Palestinian villagers, they had made a fire to keep warm and were standing around it when the soldiers came up the hill, pointed their guns at three young men by the fire, and marched them down to the checkpoint area.  They forced them at gun point to kneel on the ground with their heads bowed.  The men had already been there for half an hour by the time we arrived.

Finally, we were able to get the DCL on the telephone.  He confirmed that there was an order in place to have the checkpoint opened.  We asked him to speak with a soldier on duty so that he might enforce the order and let the people pass.  The soldier refused to take the phone to speak to the DCL and he refused to speak to us.  K asked to see the officer in and eventually, K had put the phone to his ear so he could hear what the DCL had to say.  The soldier said that the officer would be coming around in 10mins and we should go back up the hill.  He did not want to talk to us and was not interested when we told him that we had information that and order had been issued to open the roadblock.  He said that he would only be opening in the morning.

We continued to liase with the DCL and other organizations including Rabbis for Human Rights on the phone.  We then went back to try and get the soldiers to let the three young men up.  By that time they had been kneeling on the ground for about an hour.  At 11:15? the checkpoint was opened and the cars finally passed by 12:oo?

Report written by: Fatima & Dunya

Date report written on: 29.12.03

IWPS Incident Report No. 73:

Summary of incident:

Palestinian boy shot by Israeli settler after throwing stones at settler cars

Incident details -

Date of incident: 27. December 2003

Time:- 9.30 am

Place:- At Road 505 at the junction to Jamaiin

Witness:- schoolboys from Jama’in, who were with the victim

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Schoolboys witnessing, describe the incident as follows:

After the exams, at about 9am a small group of schoolboys, among them Tarek, was walking down to the settler road 505 between the villages Marda and Jama’in to throw stones to the settler cars passing by.  They hit one car in the window.  That car stopped and made a phone call.  About 5 minutes later another car drove by.  The boys saw four people sitting in a civilian car, two in the front and two in the back.  The boys said the people in the car opened the window and shot four times in the direction of the boys.  Tarek was hit by gunfire.  Early reports are that a bullet went his body in the hip area.

He was taken to Rasidia Hospital in Nablus accompanied by his father.  According to his mother he had an operation yesterday and his condition is stable and getting better.

IWPS Incident Report No. 72:

Summary of incident:

Palestinian Driver beaten by Israeli soldier

Incident details -

Date of incident:- 26. December 2003

Time:- 2.30 pm

Place:- Route No 60 from Huwara towards Kedumim

Witness:- Pal. Driver (victim) a young married man from Hares, father of five,

Passenger woman, around 20 years old, from Tulkarem

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Victim and witness describe the incident as follows:

The driver N., who has a permission for the whole West Bank roads, picked up a woman to give her a ride to the Gate of Tulkarem.  On Route 60, just after he turned east at Huwara, an army jeep was driving in front of them and slowed down the speed. They drove for some time at just 30km/h, before the jeep turned and stopped right in front of N.’s car. This was on road 60 approximately in the area of Maddama. The soldier, who had three stripes on his uniform and sitting next to the driver gets out, N. opens the window and before all, the soldiers boxes in the drivers temple. The soldier asked for the papers and then pulls him out of his white Ford Transit, beats him with fists, shoes and his rifle. During this, N. hits his head on the door of the army jeep and starts bleeding. The other three soldiers checked papers of the driver. The soldier tried to throw N. over the street barrier into the ditch, when one of other soldiers asked, why he beats the driver since all his papers are accurate. The soldier who drove the car spoke Arabic and told N. to file a complaint. The soldier who has beaten him, responded, that if he would say any word, that he would kill him.

Victim and witness describe this soldier as a smaller, thin guy with blue eyes in this early 20ies.

Both would identify him any time.

Two days later, December 28th, victim and witness went with members of IWPS to the DCO Huwara to file a complaint. They reported both separately to the Citizen Police there, who will forward the complaint to the Army Police. The police man in charge confirms that the soldier, if he is once caught, would go on trial.

N. will go the doctor to get a medical report of his injuries.

Report written by: Karin and Mariko

Date report written on: 28.12.03

IWPS Incident Report No. 71:

Summary of incident:

Random checkpoint at the only road between Mas’ha and Azawiya, blocking people and cars for hours

Incident details -

Date of report:- 27. December 2003

Time:- from 9am onwards

Place:- bridge between Mas’ha and Azawiya

Witness:- 2 IWPS members (Mariko and Karin) as well as villagers from the whole surrounding

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

According to Mas’ha and Azawiya villagers, Israeli soldiers started blocking the road around 9am in the morning.  Reports from villagers are that this roving checkpoint is a direct result of the demonstration in Mas’ha on 26 December 2003 (see IWPS Incident Report No. 70).  Since this street is the only connection between the villages south of Highway No 5 and the northern ones, this blocking has a great impact on the life of a big number of people. According to villagers cars were not let through at all and pedestrians stopped for sometimes more than 3 hours and the ID cards of some of the people taken.

IWPS arrived around 7.20 pm, when 5 cars and around 20 people were waiting. No cars or people seemed to be moving through the checkpoint. Some villagers had been delayed since lunchtime. After some questions to the soldiers, they started checking one by one and let slowly person by person pass and walk around 300m to the other side of the bridge. We could see 5 soldiers on the northern side, but only one soldier checking ID’s. It took over 40 minutes for those 20 people to pass, as well as the five cars. At least 4 cars were waiting on the southern side, without anybody checking.

According to an Israeli activist doing checkpoint watch in Deir Ballut, people’s ID’s were taken from those trying to avoid the checkpoint and going through the fields. They were told to pick up their ID’s in the village Deir Ballut, around 10km south of Azawiya. In the evening those villagers were told by the army, that they have to wait till 10pm, other soldiers told, that all ID’s were given back already.

Report written by: Karin & Dunya

Date report written on: 27.12.03

IWPS Incident Report No. 70:

Summary of incident:

Israeli and international activists shot by army during nonviolent anti-wall protest with Palestinians in Mas’ha

Incident details -

Date of report:- 26. December 2003

Time:- 4pm

Place:- Mas’ha Westgate next to Elkana Settlement

Witness:- Israeli, Palestinian and International    Protestors. Among them 2 members of IWPS (Mariko and Nijmie)

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

At 3pm about 300 non-violent protestors arrived at the western wall gate between the Palestinian village Mas’ha and the Israeli Settlement Elkana and started shaking the gate. Over three jeeps of Israeli soldiers immediately arrived and fired several rounds of bullets into the air for a period of about seven minutes. Activists then began to dismantle the gates. At this point, Israeli soldiers fired at Na’amati’s legs.

The activist, Gil Na’amati (22), was shot with two live bullets in both legs and is badly injured. An American member of the International Solidarity Movement was also injured by a bullet. Both were taken to the Biddya medical centre for treatment and Na’amati has since been transferred to Belinson hospital in Petah Tikva, Israel.

Right after this incident the soldiers drove into Mas’ha village, hunting down demonstrators, and declaring curfew.  Another Israeli activist participating in the protest, Jonathan Pollack (21) has been arrested and is being detained in Ariel police station.

Report written by: Mariko, Karin & Anna

Date report written on: 27.12.03

IWPS Incident Report No. 69:

Summary of incident:

Pregnant women give birth at check point.

Incident details -

Date of incident:-December 22nd, 2003

Time:- 2 – 4 am

Place:- Checkpoint Deir Ballut

Witnesses:-

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

LQ, pregnant in the seventh month of twins, had contractions. She felt she was going to deliver in the early morning (she has a one and a half year old girl). Her husband, her mother and the sister of her husband (names above) went with her by car to the checkpoint, about 500 meters east of their village of Deir Ballut, at 2 am on Monday, December 22nd, 2003.

A soldier shouting in Arabic from the watchtower had them wait: they waited half an hour in their car.  It was cold and windy, L. recalls. The husband shouted back saying it was an emergency, a delivery. They had telephoned in advance to order an ambulance from Beit Rima to wait for them on the other side of the checkpoint. The ambulance was not there.

Then the four of them decided to get out of the car and walk toward the houses that are beside the checkpoint, to deliver there because the contractions were increasing and the delivery was at hand. They walked a few meters. The soldier from the watchtower shouted at them to stop. They did, and waited a whole hour, standing in the cold wind. The husband got angry. Eventually told the women to get back to their car.

The ambulance arrived. The soldiers did not allow the ambulance to approach. The ambulance driver Rawhe called the officer from the settlement of Ale Zahav. The officer arrived in his jeep and refused to let the ambulance approach.

The driver and the second person in the ambulance brought a stretcher to L. She lay down on it. Then the soldiers checked her: looking under the blanket. They kept the husband at a distance.

The ambulance started then stopped immediately: the second person in the ambulance delivered the first baby girl and wrapped it in a blanket. The baby was crying.

The husband tried to approach the ambulance because he wanted to see why it had stopped. He was prevented from doing this by the soldiers.

Both the soldier and the officer were witnessing that a birth was happening.

The ambulance left. In Libban the ambulance had to stop again: the second baby girl was delivered. She cried immediately. She was put on the mother’s belly as the chord was not cut and the placenta still inside the womb.

When they arrived at around 5 am at the Governmental Hospital in Ramallah the persons in charge intended to put the first baby, who had cried all the way to Ramallah but by this time did not cry anymore, into an incubator. But the first baby was dead.

The second baby was severed from the placenta and then put in an incubator. It died around 2 pm. The three women, L., her mother and the sister of the husband, left the hospital after the second baby had died. They went home in a private car.

At the Deir Ballut checkpoint the soldiers uncovered the blanket from the woman to “check” her. They were back in Deir Ballut around 4 pm.

The twins Latifa and Mudifa were buried in Deir Ballut on Monday, 8 pm.

L. added that she does not wish anyone to make such an experience.

Report written by: Dorothée

Date report written on: December 25th, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 68:

Summary of incident: Shooting in Deir Istyia

Incident details -

Date of incident:- December 12th, 2003

Time:- 5 between 5 and 6 pm

Place:- on road out of Deir Istya near bridge

Witness:- not sure if witnesses

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Tamer Mamdo Abed Al Majid Diab, ID No. 9 4118569 6, date of birth 11.04.1984, uses a car and works as a taxi driver inside and around Deir Istya. He was driving to the bridge on the road toward the entrance of Deir Istya.

The exact event is unclear as there seem to be no eyewitnesses.

But we were given the following details on December 13th, at the home of the family:

Soldiers motioned Tamer to stop, he was scared and started to run according to one person: The soldiers were in a sort of ambush and scared him, he started to run away when they shot at him.

People from the village came to see what was going on. The army allowed one person to come to Tamer who was lying on the ground his car keys and purse beside him. This person said to an uncle of Tamer, Nidal, that Tamer was lying unconscious on the ground but that he had told the family that he had said “my leg”, when he asked him where he was hurt.

The army called an ambulance and Tamer was taken to an Israeli hospital. The Palestinian DCO informed the family about this.

On December 13th we were told that Tamer was in Belinson hospital.

Dorothée and Anna W. went to Deir Istya in the morning to get the details of the incident and see what the family needed, Tamer being in Israel. Susi telephoned Belinson, she will get in touch with a cousin who works in Israel at Beth Shemesh and plans to accompany him to Belinson in the afternoon as he is afraid to go alone.

Report written by: Dorothée

Date report written on: December 13th 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 67:

Summary of incident:  Many cabs confiscated at Zatara

Incident details:

Date:- December 5, 2003

Place:- Foot of Tapuach military base, near Zatara checkpoint

Witnesses: Kate and Dunya of IWPS, Osama and Hamzi of Hebron

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

When Kate and Dunya were crossing Zatara, they saw a line of cabs being led and followed by military vehicles.  The vehicles were driven into the parking lot at the foot of Tapuach and the soldiers instructed the drivers where to park them.  The cab drivers said the cars had been confiscated, some were told for 15 days and others for 40.  There were seven cars in this convoy, but there were already about 8 in the lot.

Passengers who had come from the cars said that they had been on the way from Ramallah to Qalqilya, because they heard on the radio that the roads were open for the first time in months.  Indeed, the roads were open.  (Zatara was not functioning as a checkpoint, no army presence.)  Between Zatara and Ariel, they were stopped and detained for some hours, while their IDs were checked.  Then some of the cars were allowed to continue, and others were told that they did not have permission to be on the road and forced to follow the soldiers to Zatara.  Soldiers got very agitated when Kate took a picture of them and the confiscated cars, and tried to take her camera, but were satisfied when she deleted the photo.

We later learned from a cab driver from Hares that his car had also been confiscated that day, but he had a spare set of keys.  He reported that he was held for five hours before being released.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: December 11, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 66:

Summary of incident: Settlers Cut Trees Near Revava

Incident details -

Date of report:- December 12th, 2003

Time:- Incident from 2002 – 2003

Place:- Olive groves south of Revava

Witness:- Ayesha Mahmoud Abd el Kader Qassem, Hares, Salfit

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Ayesha Mahmoud Abd el Kader Qassem owns land south of Revava.

In autumn 2002 60 (sixty) trees were cut by the settlers of Revava. Ayesha had a report made and pictures taken by the police of Qedumim. She has a copy of the report, dated September 11th, 2002. Her file was transferred to Ariel. She has not had connection with the police of Ariel.

She had a report made at the Ministry of Agriculture of the PNA in Salfit, dated September 14th 2002.

She went to court of Jerusalem with a lawyer, Bassam Karraje, who will fight her case.

Whenever she goes on her land the guard of Revava, Gadi, comes and tells her to leave. He also told women who picked olives for Ayesha and a man who plowed the land to go away.

She recently reported an incident that happened in 2003 to the DCO of Salfit, Ibrahim Diik: on November 20th a pole was planted o her land and a road made, cutting 4 (four) trees. Dorothee and Nijmie visited the land with Ayesha and took pictures.

Report written by: Dorothee

Date report written on: December 12th, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 66-1:

Summary of incident:  60 trees cut in Kifl Hares for “road widening”

Incident details:

Date: – December 1, 2003

Place:- Land of Kifl Hares, on the main road across from Ariel entrance, and further down toward Marda

Witnesses: Najib S., Kate and Anna of IWPS, Susy and Aya of Machsom Watch

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

While passing the fields of Kifl Hares on the bus, IWPS team members noted trees being uprooted.  When we got home, we learned that Susy and Aya of Machsom Watch had also seen this on their way to Huwara and called the house.  Susy said they had spoken to the bulldozer driver, who said that 40 trees were being uprooted in the eastern part, and then they were going back to do some “corrections” in the western area of the village lands.

Kate and Anna arrived at the roadblock of Kifl Hares and a man from the village asked us to come with him to see what was happening.  The digger was working just west of the roadblock, uprooting one tree after another.  We saw a man and two young children collecting wood that had been cut from the trees and piling it up.  There was a truck there, and apparently, the family had made arrangements with the contractor to replant the trees. They told us that 10 trees were being uprooted in that area.  We filmed the digger uprooting the trees, and also interviewed some of the workers.  One security guard, who insisted that the Palestinians are to blame for the entire situation and that the West Bank was never Palestine, also said that the bulldozer driver said he felt sick when he began uprooting the trees.

Najib, whose family owns the land just east of the roadblock, showed us four newly uprooted trees on his land.  He also showed us several telephone poles which had been cut, and a water pipe he said had been cut several days before, leaving the village without water for three days.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: December 4, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 65:

Summary of incident:  Olives confiscated from farmer in Marda; family threatened with arrest if picking olives on the road

Incident details:

Date:- November 10, 2003

Place:- Marda fields, near occupied house west of Jamai’in

Witnesses: Abu Mohammed and family; Abdelkarim and family

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

Abdelbasset called at 8:30 a.m. and said that Abu Mohammed had been picking on his land near the occupied house across from the mafraq of Marda when the army came and told him to go.  When his sons tried to take the sack of olives, the soldiers said no, they were taking them.  They also told him that if he tried to pick there again, he and his sons would be arrested, along with their tractor.

Abdelkarim has the land next to Abu Mohammed’s, and he also reported that he was told by the army that he could not pick next to the road.  When he asked for how long, he was told, today, tomorrow and for the next month.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: November 11, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 64:

Summary of incident:

Palestinian woman and IWPS team members prevented by Army from gathering wood on land belonging to Hares

Incident details:

Date:- November 8, 2003

Place:- Hares fields under Revava settlement

Witnesses: Hannah and Kate from IWPS

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

M. asked us to go with her to land belonging to her sister-in-law under the Revava military point.  There is a barbed wire fence and a new road built by the settlement running through this land.  M. wanted to gather the fire wood left when several trees were uprooted by the settlement.

We had just begun to gather the wood when an alarm went off.  It sounded for about 5 minutes.  About 10 minutes later, four soldiers arrived and came to where we were.  They said that we were trespassing and had to leave.  We explained that we just wanted the wood, but they said we could not take it from there.  They then asked M. for her ID.  She did not have it, and they said they would call the police because she had crossed a road without ID.  One soldier went to the jeep, presumably to call.  The others were quite verbally abusive to M and us.

We tried to leave, but they told us we had to wait.  At one point, when Hannah from IWPS asked why they were doing this, the soldier who spoke English said, “I am very bored.”  He told Kate, “I’ve seen you here at least five times,” and therefore, he said, he would “personally see that you are thrown out of this country.”  After detaining us at gunpoint for fifteen minutes, the soldier from the jeep came back and said that the phone was closed.  At that point they warned us that if we came near there again, we would be arrested.  They refused to let us take any of the wood, and followed us out to the road, clicking their rifles.

Report written by: Kate and Hannah

Date report written on: November 11, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 63:

Summary of incident:

Army occupies Marda, imposes curfew for two days
Incident details:

Date:- November 8, 2003

Place:- Marda

Witnesses: Hannah and Kate from IWPS

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

N. from Marda called at 12:30 p.m. and said that the army had been in the village since 8:00 the previous evening.  Hannah and Kate went to see what was happening.

There was a Humvee at the western entrance to the village but no army at the middle crossroads.  We walked in with a man who had come to pick up his wife.  A jeep stopped us halfway into the village, looked at all of our IDs, talked to Y., and let us all go on into the village.

There were a few people on the street.  They said that a young man had been arrested about an hour earlier.  We met with his family, who told us that at about 10:00 a.m., the soldiers came to the house and took their son, saying that he had thrown stones from the roof.  However, the father pointed out, there were no stones on the roof.  When we asked the army later, they said that “we are not the only ones who are watching.”

There were at least three jeeps in town.  They stopped anyone who was walking or driving, checked all cars, but did not seem to be using weapons.  One of the soldiers, who said he was in charge, told us that the village was closed and ordered us to leave.  He said that the curfew was because a Molotov Cocktail had been thrown onto the road, and they believed it came from Marda. He said he did not know how long they would remain, “maybe until tomorrow or the next day.”  Another jeep later accosted us and the soldier asked, “Aren’t you afraid?”  When we said no, he said, “Start to be afraid.”

Report taken by: Kate and Hannah

Date report written on: November 11, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 62:

Summary of incident:

Palestinian elders attacked and injured by masked armed settlers near Tapuach settlement

Incident details -

Date:-            28th October 2003

Time:- Approximately 3pm

Place:- Land of Jama’iin, 1 kilometer northwest of Tapuach Outpost

Witness:-The victim and his wife

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

On Tuesday 28th October 2003, S. and his wife, two elders from the Palestinian village Yasouf were picking olives on the northwestern side of the outpost of Tapuach, also known as Tapuach Chadasch. They were about one kilometer below the illegal outpost.

They had already harvested three sacks of olives when at 3 pm three settlers took them by surprise and attacked them. Two of the settlers wore face masks obscuring their features and were armed.  One settler was unmasked and this one used a metal pipe to break the elderly man’s right arm.

The old villagers fled the scene and the settlers stole the three sacks of olives, their tools and two donkeys which they borrowed from relatives to help them carry the harvest.

S. informed the Palestinian DCL, who forwarded the information to the Israeli DCO and the police. He also was treated in the hospital in Salfit and has his arm in cast for 30 days.

Two days after the incident he went himself to the Israeli DCO and filed a complaint.

To date there has been no reaction and the donkeys are still missing.

Report written by: Karin & Nijmie

Date report written on: 2nd November 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 61:

Summary of incident:  300 held, 25 arrested in Kufr Eyin

Incident details:

Date:-            October 23, 2003

Place:- Kufr Eyin (Ramallah District)

Witnesses: Dunya, Hannah, Lynn, and Nijmie from IWPS

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of incident:

On Thursday October 23 at 8:30 a.m., IWPS office got a call from a man in Qurawat Bani Zeid, saying that six Israeli jeeps and Armored Personnel Carriers (APC) had moved into the town.  The man requested our presence.  At 10:30 four IWPS workers arrived at a nearby village and walked across a roadblock to access the area, witnessing a number of jeeps passing on the road.  We entered Kufr Eyin, population 1,500, and were told the army was now there.  Moments later, a formation of approximately 40 soldiers marched down a hill and into a waiting APC.  Further up the hill, a military incursion was in progress.  Israeli army jeeps and more APCs were parked in front of the village school.  Several men, blindfolded and handcuffed, were being led into one of the APCs.  We were told that Israeli soldiers were holding all of the men in the village between the ages of 14-40 in the schoolyard.  As IWPS workers watched, the soldiers herded frantic mothers and children back away from the arrest scene.  For approximately 1/2-3/4 hour, the soldiers kept the villagers back from witnessing the arrests, often times yelling, threatening the women with tear gas, and chasing them back towards their homes, with rifles pointed at them.  The army vehicles left at 11:30 a.m. with the men they had arrested.

We spoke with witnesses, one of whom had been held in the schoolyard since 6:00 a.m.  He relayed the following information:  At 2:00 a.m., the soldiers surrounded the village.  Shots and explosions were heard.  Between 4:00-5:00, the army announced curfew through loudspeakers of roving jeeps, ordering all men between 14-40 to present themselves at the school.  Shortly afterwards, they conducted house-to-house searches, looking for men.  He said there were 33 military cars and 300 soldiers involved in the operation, one soldier per Palestinian.   Three hundred men were herded into the schoolyard, their identifications checked in groups of 10.  Eight did not have Palestinian I.D.’s and were immediately blindfolded and sequestered.  Thirteen others were ultimately blindfolded and arrested as well, and estimated the total men arrested to be between 20-25.   The majority remaining were made to sit against the wall of the school ard in the sun from approximately 6:00-11:30 a.m.  The witness said the soldiers provided some water for the men, but they were given no food and limited bathroom use.

The soldiers had constructed barbed wire pens inside the schoolyard, drilling holes in the concrete for the poles, then stringing barbed wire to divide the yard into three sections.  They destroyed a door and windows inside the school.  One young man was hit by a border policeman in the stomach, struck with both rifle and fist, when he asked to use the bathroom.  They had also demanded the detainees give their phone numbers to the soldier, and on a number of occasions, when men claimed to have no phone, the same soldier would read the phone number out loud, as if to show the men that they could hide nothing from the army.

The witness reports that Kufr Eyin has been under heavy surveillance for the past 10 days.  A curfew has been enforced three times in the past week; people with olive trees have been prohibited from harvesting their crops.

IWPS workers witnessed damage to the school following the release of approximately 275 men and boys.  A window was broken, and there was a watermelon-sized hole in the thick concrete wall adjacent to the rooftop door, which lay in rubble off its hinges on the ground.  The soldiers had left their trash, and ripped several of the school’s posters from their walls.

IWPS will maintain contact with Kufr Eyin and Qarawat Bani Zeid, and will provide accompaniment (olive-picking and otherwise) as needed.

Report taken by: IWPS team

Date report written on: October 24, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 60

Summary of incident:

Army occupies Kufr Ayn for four days

Incident details -

Date:- October 16-19, 2003

Place:- Kufr Ayn (Ramallah District)

Witnesses: Nadam, Fawzi B.

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Abu Rabia from Qarawat Bani Zeid took us to the neighboring village of Kufr Ayn, which had been occupied by the army for four days.  The army had set up a checkpoint in the middle of town, and no one was allowed to pass from one side to the other.  This meant that, (1) 70% of the people could not get to their olive trees during the last picking days before Ramadan; and (2) twenty houses were cut off from all shops in the village, the mosque and the school.

Two houses were occupied.  Fawzi B. and his family were confined to their home, while the owner of the other house, an elderly woman, was ordered to leave the house and not allowed to return for four days.

Most of the teachers in the school come from the neighboring villages of Beit Rima and Deir Ghassan, and they were not able to pass the checkpoint, so the school was closed for all four days.

Women from Machsom Watch visited the village on Saturday, and the checkpoint situation improved briefly, but after they left, it got worse again.  We were going to ask the soldiers what they were doing, but they left while we were in the village.

Report taken by: Kate and Karin

Date report written on: October 20, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 59

Summary of incident:

Two shot in Qarawat Bani Zeid

Incident details -

Date:- October 16, 2003

Time:- 5:30 p.m.

Place:- Qarawat Bani Zeid (Ramallah District)

Witnesses: Aish A., Abu R.

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

On Thursday, October 16, two men were shot while walking on the main street of Qarawat Bani Zeid.  They both reported that a jeep drove through firing rubber bullets from close range.  Aish A., 38, was getting out of a car, having just returned from Salfit.  He was shot in the back.  The soldiers did not say anything.  The other man, who is in his 60s, was taking his olives to the press.  He was shot three times, and has wounds in the backs of both legs.  Both men showed us their injuries.

After the shootings, both were taken in ambulances, but the ambulances were held at the checkpoint and not allowed to reach the hospital.  After waiting over an hour at the checkpoint, the men returned to Qarawat Bani Zeid and were seen by the doctor in town.  They went to the hospital in Salfit the next day.

Report taken by: Kate and Karin

Date report written on: October 20, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 58

Summary of incident

Army Burns Olive Grove in Az Zawiya

Incident details -

Date:- October 16, 2003

Time:- Afternoon

Place:- Az Zawiya

Witness:- villagers from Az Zawiya

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all relevant information you may need to begin action.

Description of Incident

On October 15th, a Wednesday, we got a call from Enam that trees had been burned in the village of Az Zawiya.  On Sunday, Dunya, Hannah, and Fatima went to investigate the situation.  We arrived on the land and met three brothers, sons of Atam H. I., who told us that the army had burned several hundred olive trees on Thursday.  The Israeli army has set up at least two army bases on Az Zawiya land, and judging by several trailers situated at the side of one army base, the settlement of Elkana seems to be expanding.  This army base is located directly across the road from the family’s land.  No warning was given to the family before their 40 dunums of land were destroyed, and no reason has followed.  The only interaction the family has had with the army in the past few days has been their failed attempt to cross the road to put out the fire as it burned Thursday afternoon.  The army refused to let them pass to try to save their century-old trees.

Az Zawiya has been very hard-hit by military action in the past several years.  The army conducts training on their land, and they sometimes forget to clean up after themselves.  About three years ago, villagers report, one man picking olives had his arms blown off by an Israeli bomb left in the field.  Two similar incidents were recounted to us as well.  This week was not the first time trees have been cut or burned for military purposes.  Three months ago, the army cleared an area near the road with 200 trees, supposedly in an attempt to stop Palestinian men from entering Israel to work.  Now the village is faced again with the brutal realities of land confiscation, destruction, and occupation.

In the coming days, we will accompany Az Zawiya farmers as they attempt to harvest olives near the road, and will help them replant the trees if they decide to do so.

Report written by: Hannah & Dunya

Date report written on: October 19, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 57

Summary of incident:  Curfew and arrests in Hares village

Incident details -

Date:- October 8, 2003

Time:- 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Place:- Hares

Witness:- Dunya and Kate from IWPS, Danielle (guest) and villagers

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

6:45 a.m.  Kate and Dunya go to Hares roadblock.  Army is there, saying no one can go out.  Commander says it is “curfew,” although it is not.  Eventually, teachers are allowed to go out, and some students.  Some of those who go through return back, saying they cannot get a car.

8:00 a.m.  Following an episode where a man with a donkey attempted to cross the roadblock, soldiers order everyone back into the village, and prepare tear gas canisters.

10:45 a.m.  Kate goes to the roadblock and a man asks her to help negotiate for him to move his car from outside the village to inside.  Negotiations fail.  Helicopters are circling overhead.

1:15 p.m.  There are several jeeps outside the village and several services full of people are being detained.  Jeeps appear inside the village and drive around with sirens blaring, as the kids and teachers are coming from school.  They do not announce curfew.  Helicopters are still circling.

3:00 p.m.  Two busloads of people going to Tulkarem are being detained at the Giti junction.  Kate goes to monitor.  People say they have been waiting more than two hours, More people are detained at roadblock.  Danielle learns that at least two people have been arrested.  The army suddenly tells the detainees at the intersection that they can go, but they cannot have their IDs back.  Many people leave without IDs.

3:30 p.m.  Army surrounds auto body shop owned by Souf family.  Kate watches them.  They occupy the shop for about an hour, allowing no one to pass in either direction.  Jeeps drive around town announcing curfew.  Maybe they fire either tear gas or warning shots (people say they heard them, but we did not.)  Our neighbor and friend, Um Rabia, tells Kate that Abu Rabia, the DCL for Salfit, has been arrested in the village.  Dunya and Danielle locate the house where people are being detained.  Abu Rabia is being held in a jeep, shackled and blindfolded; soon after IWPS arrives, he is released. Another man is also detained, but released.  We return to the roadblock, where there are now border police, police jeeps, army jeeps, a troop carrier, a Humvee and a bulldozer.  A busload of people as well as others are detained.  Two children who live outside the village and came in to buy food are now are prevented from leaving.  It is dark.  We try to negotiate for them to be allowed to go to their families.  Border police say that that would not be fair because there are also kids on the bus.  We point out that the kids on the bus are with their parents.  They respond that anyway, 14 (the age of the older boy, the other is 10) is not so young.  Negotiations fail.

6:15 p.m.  The two arrested men, who have now been held for hours in the bus stop, blindfolded, handcuffed and clearly in pain, are taken away, but still no one is allowed in or out of the village, except for us.

7:05 p.m.  Men who have been waiting for four hours come and ask us for water.  Kate and Dunya decide to bring it from the house.  As we are walking back, Danielle calls to say that everyone is being released, and a policeman is approaching her.  We go back to monitor the situation.  The police tell Danielle that she has been rude to soldiers and someone is making a complaint against her.  They say they want her to come to the police station and sign something saying she is making propaganda with the village. She tries to negotiate with them.

7:30 p.m.  Danielle is taken to Ariel police station.

11:00 p.m.  Neta calls Ariel and they say they are not holding the Palestinians.

12:05 a.m.  Danielle is released, and gets home about 1:15.  We are not able to get any information about the arrested Palestinians that night.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: October 8, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 56:

Summary of incident

Flower stall demolished in Hares

Incident details -

Date:- October 1, 2003

Time:- 8:00 a.m.

Place:-

Witness:- Mohammed S. and family; Abu Rabia, Kate and Jean from IWPS

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Abu Rabia came to the house at 7:45 this morning to say that there were soldiers at the checkpoint causing problems.  Jean and Kate went to the roadblock and people told us that the army was demolishing a flower shed across the street.  We went to the site and observed several workers in the process of demolishing a shed with a wrecking crane, and loading all the pieces onto a flatbed truck.  Three soldiers were guarding the scene.  The DCO was there as well.

We spoke to Um Hassan and Um Mustafa, whose family owns the shed.  The shed has been there for five years.  They said the army came without warning, though later we heard the DCO say that they had given them the order yesterday.  We did not see many plants in the area.  The frame of the shed had been collapsed, and the workers took the iron rebar and metal siding out piece by piece and loaded them onto the truck.  They cut some pieces with electric cutters powered by a generator.

Jean asked the soldiers why they were demolishing the building, and they said because it had no papers, and because it was ugly.  They were quite verbally abusive, and kept insisting that we spoke Hebrew.  Um Mohammed, who is 81 years old, was extremely upset about the destruction of her family’s property, and was trying to go nearer to the wreckage.  The soldiers yelled at her to get back.  We asked them to move a little, so that she would not cut herself on the barbed wire fence, and they refused.  Kate tried to go retrieve a plastic chair from the pile of rubble for her to sit on, but the soldiers blocked her access to the area.  They yelled at the women to get away, saying, in Hebrew, “This is our land.  It is Israel, and you can’t be here.”

Kate was taking pictures, and the DCO told her to stop.  Abu Rabia came and talked to the DCO for a few minutes, the DCO made a phone call, then told Abu Rabia something.  Abu Rabia talked to the men from the family and then left.

Kate asked the soldiers, “Don’t you feel bad about doing this?”  One said, “No.”  She asked, “Why not?  Because they are not people?” and he answered, “Yes.  They are a pile of shit.”

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: October 1, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 55

Summary of incident:

Seventy men detained at Azun/Oranit checkpoint, some for over 24 hours

Incident details –

Date:- September 23, 2003

Time:- 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Place:- Checkpoint 110 on Highway 505

Witness:- Kate, Carolyn and Hannah of IWPS

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

On Monday, September 22, IWPS got a call from Dorothy Naor, who said that she had been by the checkpoint near Oranit on Highway 505 (known as Azun checkpoint in Palestine, and Checkpoint 110 to the army) and seen over 50 men detained in the olive groves nearby.  She had talked to the men and many of them said they had been held there since early morning.  She asked if we could go out there on Tuesday and see if the same situation was occurring.

Kate, Hannah and Carolyn got to the checkpoint at 4:30 p.m.  When we first got there, it appeared simply that there were groups of men hanging out in the fields.  However, we soon realized that they were actually detainees.  There is a barbed wire fence around one side, and a guardrail that separates the grove from the street.  There were both border police and soldiers present; only the border police had a jeep, and the license number of the jeep was 22-266-מ.

There were about 70 men present.  Most of them said they had been there since early morning.  Some said they had been there since the day before.  Kate talked to one of the soldiers, who said that the men had tried to go around the checkpoint and been caught.  He said they could leave any time they wanted, but since the soldiers had their ID cards, this was not true.  When we asked more, the soldiers said that they were punishing the men for trying to go around the checkpoint to work in Israel.

One man, Mohammed, told Hannah he was going to visit his son in the hospital in Israel.  He reported that the border police hit him in the face with the butt of a gun, handcuffed him and made him stand in the sun for hours.  Another man said he had been beaten on the arm.

We called both Hamoked and the Palestinian DCL.  Both said they would look into the situation.  After we had been there about two hours, with no one being released, we asked the soldiers again when the men would be allowed to go home.  Instead of answering us, they told the men in Hebrew that if we stayed, they would not be allowed to go home, that if we left now, they would release them in two hours, but if we stayed two hours, they would hold the men for five.  We asked the men if they wanted us to leave, but they said no.

Hannah had a sheet in her pack, and Kate had spraypaint, so we decided to make a banner to draw attention from passing cars to this human rights violation.  The Palestinians decided on the slogans which they painted in Hebrew, English and Arabic – “Freedom Only,” in English and Arabic, and “רוצ׳ם שלום”in Hebrew.  The soldiers came over and told them they could not hold up the banner.  The men argued for a while and then gave the banner to Carolyn and Hannah. The soldiers then tried to say that we could not hold it either, saying we were a demonstration with more than 50 people and needed a permit.  Carolyn responded that there were only three of us, and they accepted that.

At about 6:30 p.m., the soldiers let the older men go and told the rest they had orders to hold them until midnight.  However, they began returning IDs a few at a time after about 15 minutes.  When we left at 7:30 p.m., there were still about 40 men waiting.  Other IWPS members returned the next afternoon, and some of the men said they had been there since the day before.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: September 26, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 54

Summary of incident:

Home in A-Ras, Qalqilya District, given 3-day demolition notice

Incident details -

Date:- September 23, 2003

Place:- A-Ras/Jbarra outside Apartheid Wall, Qalqilya District

Witness: Abu Eyad and family; Abu Hazen (Sadiq M.)

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Azmi D. (Abu Eyad) bought land on the edge of the village of A-Ras, in northern Qalqilya, five years ago so that he could build a house large enough for his family of 12.  Abu Eyad’s family are 1948 refugees from Hadera, who fled to Tulkarem Camp in 1948.  Abu Eyad told Carolyn he has Israeli citizenship and lived in Israel for years, though there seems to be some question about this.  Five years ago he decided to move to the Tulkarem area because he was having a hard time finding work in Israel.  He applied for a license to build a house, but was denied because the government said that the land, which is in Area C, is for agricultural use only.  He objected that the settlement of Salait, which is visible from his window, has cut trees to build houses.  His license was not granted, but he built the house anyway.  He estimates that with the land, the house cost him 150,000 jd to date.

In March 2002, he received a notice from the army ordering him and his family to evacuate the house.  He talked to a lawyer at that time.  He received a second notice in May of 2002, and received nothing since until now.

Last year, the Wall was built next to the house, leaving Abu Eyad’s family and one other on the Jbarra side of the Wall, cut off from A-Ras and the rest of the West Bank.  They are also cut off from Jbarra by a fence that runs along the other side of the village road.  They are in the security zone, and have been given special permission to drive on the security road, as it is the only access to their house.  A hole has been cut in the barbed wire fence that separates the road from the village so that Abu Eyad’s car can get to the house.

On September 23 they received a third and final notice which warns that the house will be demolished in three days.  The army says it has nothing to do with the Wall and is only because the house is not licensed.  However, Abu Eyad believes that the settlement wants to expand onto his land.  The neighboring house has also received an evacuation order, but it is their first notice and they have a good lawyer.

IWPS was contacted by Abu Hazen, a member of the Village Council of Jbarra, on September 24, one day after Abu Eyad received the notice.  We contacted the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions and the Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center.  Both were interested in the case.  ICAHD talked to Abu Eyad and Abu Hazen, and they faxed them the order.  On September 25, we went to visit the family and they had not heard from ICAHD or JLAC.  We called ICAHD and they said they needed more information to see what could be done, but they advised getting a lawyer and going to court to try to stop the demolition at least temporarily.  On Sunday, Abu Eyad faxed JLAC all the papers.  Later, Kate talked to Suleiman from JLAC and he said that on Monday, he would try to get a seven-day reprieve from the army so that he can go to court and file for an injunction.

Chris and MJ, two British volunteers, are staying with the family over the weekend.  ISM Tulkarem knows the family and will also be helping to coordinate support.  The family is interested in having activists try to block the demolition, and say they will not leave voluntarily.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: 9/26/03

Contacts:

IWPS Incident Report No. 53

Summary of incident

Families in Kifl Hares prevented from picking olives from trees which have been cut

Incident details

Date:- September 20-21, 2003

Time:-

Place:- Olive groves of Kifl Hares, opposite entrance to Ariel

Witnesses: Kate, Carolyn, Hannah from IWPS; Dorothy Naor

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

The mayor of Kifl Hares called on September 20 to say that some farmers had been prevented from picking olives from the trees which were cut a few days earlier across from the entrance to Kifl Hares.  The army had told them it was a closed military zone and they did not have permission to be in the olive groves.  Dorothy Naor called around, and finally talked to Talia in the IDF Spokesperson’s office, who said that the families had permission to pick their olives the next morning at 6:30 a.m.  We arranged to meet the farmers at 8:00 a.m. at the entrance.

Kate, Carolyn and Hannah arrived at the roadblock at 8:00.  Soldiers were blocking the entrance, but they allowed us through.  Soon two men came with saws.  The soldiers told them they could not go to the groves, even though one of them had a paper showing he had permission from the DCO.  We argued with the soldiers, and Carolyn called Talia, who did not answer.  Eventually, the man with the written permission was allowed to go to the grove, but the other man was sent home.  When we tried to go into the grove as well, the soldiers yelled at the farmer that only he was allowed there, not us, and that if he talked to us he would be sent home.  About 10:00 a.m., the army left the area.

Dorothy and Carolyn called Talia again, and she said she would check.,  Eventually she said that the farmers had three days’ permission to pick there.  Soon, the DCO came, followed by some regular soldiers. They said they were there to protect the people picking, and make sure no one interfered with them. Carolyn, Kyrle and Dorothy picked with them for some hours.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: 9/25/03

IWPS Incident Report No. 52

Summary of incident:

40-200 trees belonging to four families cut in Kifl Hares across from Ariel
Incident details –

Date:- September 18, 2003

Time:- 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Place:- Olive groves of Kifl Hares, opposite entrance to Ariel

Witnesses: Tayseer, Abu Omar

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Tayseer called at approximately 1:30 p.m. to say that trees were being cut at the entrance to Kifl Hares, across from the entrance to Ariel settlement.  Cathy, Kate and Kyrle went to investigate.  When we arrived, the cutting had already been completed and the workers were gone.  Two men were in the field, and we talked to them.  One was an older man who identified himself as one of the owners of the land.  The other was Abu Omar, a friend of his.  They said that 200 trees had been cut, but we did not see evidence of more than 50.  Tayseer had mentioned 40 trees.  There were at least five holes where trees had clearly been uprooted.  The men said that the contractor had taken those trees away on tractors.  Many others had been cut down but not uprooted.  Abu Omar and the owner mentioned that the olive harvest for those trees would have begun in two weeks.

According to Arik Asherman of Rabbis for Human Rights, and Nawaf Souf (Abu Rabia), the Palestinian DCL for Salfit, the army decided to cut the trees after the last bombing at the Ariel entrance.  The families appealed, and on September 20, the Supreme Court denied their appeal.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: September 25, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 51

Summary:

Army Jeeps Enter Hares Village, IWPS Team Members Threatened With Arrest

Incident details -

Date:- 14th September 2003

Time:- 9:00 a.m.

Place:- Hares Roadblock

Witness:- Carolyn, Kate, Riziq, various other villagers and soldiers

Description of Incident

On Sunday morning, Kate and Carolyn of IWPS were sitting at the Hares roadblock, where a checkpoint had been set up.  Four soldiers were at the entrance to the village, and we were about 20 meters away from them, on the roadblock.  When we first arrived, Kate crossed the street to talk to some women at the bus stop and they checked her ID; when she crossed back they asked her some questions and she asked them some; it was a brief idle conversation.

We had been there about 15 minutes when two jeeps arrived from inside the village.  There was a group of Palestinian men in front of them, who were allowed to cross after about ten minutes.  The soldiers got out of the two jeeps with their guns drawn and started looking around the house at the entrance to the village.  We got up and went to stand inside the roadblock, along with the other people who had gathered to see what was going on.  The commander saw us and immediately called someone and said in Hebrew, “There are two people here from ISM.”  He then asked Carolyn for ID.  She asked why and he said, “Because I want it.”  She gave him a copy of her passport.  He asked Kate and she said that she had already shown her ID to the other soldiers.  He seemed to accept that.

We realized that at that point, all 12 soldiers were surrounding us and not doing much else.  We did not talk to them or engage with them.  The soldier who had checked Kate’s ID earlier came and asked her why she didn’t give it to the commander.  She said, because I already showed it to you, and he said, “But he’s higher than me.”  She said, “Okay, if he needs it, no problem,” and gave it to him.  He complained to Carolyn about the fact that we only had copies.

After about 20 minutes, two policemen arrived in a jeep.  The commander went to talk to them, and gave them our IDs.  One of the policemen called us over and asked if we spoke Spanish.  We said we didn’t, only English, and he got one of the soldiers to come over, though he didn’t really need him to translate.  He told the army commander that he was going to warn us to stay away from them or we’d be arrested.  The commander objected that he wanted us gone now, and the policeman said he would tell us to leave.  The commander thanked him and he and his group left.  Another jeep and two more soldiers arrived outside the roadblock.  One of the soldiers knew Carolyn and came to talk to her.

The policeman told Kate, “This is not the first time, I’ve seen you here before, making problems.”  She said no, she did not make problems.  He said, “You always bother soldiers,” and she said she was not bothering them, she was not even talking to them.  He said “Even sitting here watching them is bothering them, and if I see you doing it again, I will arrest you.”  We objected that lots of people sit at the roadblock and it’s our right to do it too, and he repeated that if he saw us doing it, he would arrest us.

He gave us back our IDs, and we left.

Report written by: Kate

Date report written on: 9/16/03

IWPS Incident Report No. 50

Summary:

Settlers from Revava come onto D’s land.

Incident details -

Date:-            4th September 2003

Time:- afternoon

Place:- D’s family land

Witness:-     Carolyn, Kate, Marlous, Nijme, Mohanad.

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

On Tuesday 2nd September, IWPS was approached at Hares roadblock by Ayman D. who said that there settlers on his land. We went to have a look from the edge of the road. There were caravans situated about 100 yards down the hill from the Revava settlement. The caravans were next to a road that borders the settlement and Ayman’s family land.

He told us that the settlers had been on his land with a bulldozer, shifting boulders and dirt. We took some photos and said we would contact some Israeli groups that monitor settlement activity.

On Thursday 6th of September, IWPS had an urgent call from Ayman D saying that the settlers were on his land again and that they had beaten up his brother. When we got to Hares, another brother Mohanad, took us to see what was happening. The caravans turned out to be demountable buildings, which are being used as a temporary school while a new girls school is being built on the land. The settlement had hired private building contractors (it is not clear whether the building work is being paid for by the government or directly by the settlement) who had put the caravans on the land about a year ago. Subsequently the D. family had spoken to the building contractors about this and the contractors had guaranteed that they wouldn’t come onto the family land. About 2 months ago they came back again to start work on the permanent school buildings and had taken soil from the D’s land. The family had had a confrontation with them at that time but Mohanad explained that after that, the building contractors had only come on the land at night or when there was curfew was imposed on the village. Several days ago the building contractors had started to come on the land again in broad daylight. The family had contacted the police and the District Co-ordination Officer (DCO) called Mansour, who had guaranteed that the contractors would not be allowed on the D’s land. However 3 days later the contractors were back moving boulders on the D’s land in order to expand the security fence around the school. The expansion of the fence encroaches on the D’s land. It also turned out that the brother who had been taken to hospital by the time we arrived, had not been beaten up by settlers or building contractors, but had had a minor heart attack attempting to lift the boulders back and dig up the fence posts laid by the building contractors.

When IWPS reached the road that acts as a border between the family’s land and the settlement we were approached by a security guard Moshe, hired by the building contractors. He had driven up the road as soon as he had seen Marlous who had arrived first. When we got to the road a couple of minutes later, Moshe had gotten out of his car and was shouting at Marlous. She had told him that we had come to investigate what was happening. Moshe was standing very close to Marlous and was leaning over her with his face about an inch away from hers and shouting at her that she was a liar and had better got off ‘his’ land. When the rest of us arrived he turned to us and started shouting at us in Hebrew to get off the road. Mohanad walked back to the side of the road, which was techn ically his family’s land. Moshe followed him and took Mohanad aside saying he wanted to have a word with him. We stood by and heard Moshe say to Mohanad that there was no problem here. They (meaning the Palestinians and Israeli settlers) were all friends. He also kept saying that he had already offered the D’s money and they should take the money and leave. When Mohanad argued back that he didn’t want the money, Moshe suggested that if he really had a problem he should approach the police who were there to sort these things out.

He then turned back to us and yelled at us to get off ‘his’ land and that this was nothing to do with us, we should go back where we came from etc. At one point when he was using very aggressive body language, standing very close and leaning over us yelling, another young security guard that was working with him, came over to try and pull him away. Moshe pushed him off and continued to yell at us.

By this time a third security guard had arrived in another four wheel drive. He was the guard from the settlement. He had been sitting in his car watching Moshe threatening us. We called to him to come and over and help calm Moshe down. He managed to get  Moshe to leave but then told the IWPS that we had also better leave as we were on settlement land.  Finally after several minutes of arguing about whose land we were standing on, he called the army. Two jeep loads of soldiers arrived. One of the soldiers approached us and when we tried to explain the situation he said ‘I don’t have anything to do with real estate matters!” Finally he threatened to call the police so we left.

Report written by: Carolyn and Kate

Date report written on: 9/9/03

IWPS Incident Report No. 49

Summary:

Israeli soldiers in house in Hares

Incident details

Date: 21 August 2003

Time: 11:30am

Place: Hares

Description of Incident

IWPS received phone call from Abu Rabiya that Israeli soldiers were in house in Hares. The soldiers had left by the time we got there. The house is actually a warehouse for storing goods. The owner of the building, Abu Nidal, had been sent notification of demolition a while ago. He had consulted a lawyer and received a document from an Israeli court staying the demolition. He has a copy of this document. The soldiers that came this morning brought a civil servant with them, possibly a surveyor. IWPS member stayed about an hour with Abu Rabiya while he spoke to the family and various other people, and took some photos.

Report written by: Carolyn

Date report written on: August 21, 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 48

Summary:

Closed military zone declared at Kefl Hares roadblock. Palestinians unable to come into or leave area.

Incident details

Date: 19th August 2003

Time: 9:00 – 17:00

Place: Kifl Hares

Description of Incident

Monday evening 18th August 2003 , IWPS received a call describing soldier harassment and the setting up of a new checkpoint at the Kifl Hares roadblock at the village’s junction with Highway 505 (“ Trans-Samaria Highway ”).

Tuesday morning around 9:00 , three members of IWPS went to Kifl Hares to observe the situation.

At the roadblock they met several men who said that the soldiers refused anybody to enter or leave the village through the roadblock. One person present was the owner of a house and plant nursery at the Kifl Hares/Road 505 junction, whose roof had been occupied by two soldiers to exercise control over the roadblock. The soldiers were preventing him from entering his house or care for the plants. Two other men were prevented from reaching their cars parked at the road junction. One man had a van full of eggs. The soldiers said they would keep the van (parked in the sun) until the evening, even though the driver had all the correct permissions from the occupying forces for using the settler road. The other man wanted to reclaim his car that had been detained since the night before, after his son was fined for driving without the proper permits for using a settler road.

The IWPS members approached the junction to find out the reason for the problems and try to negotiate back the cars of the drivers and for house owner to water his plants. They were threatened in Hebrew by the soldiers and told (in English) to leave the area by the soldiers, private security and what appeared to be a settler. When they persisted in trying to establish the problem, they were told the area was a closed military zone (CMZ). An army commander came to shown them a paper in Hebrew that purportedly established the CMZ. When the IWPS members still refused to leave, he took their passports and called the border police. The border police told them to leave immediately or they would be arrested. The IWPS members decided to retreat to behind the roadblock.

The IWPS members rang the DCOs in Nablus and Salfit, and were told they should ring human rights organizations about the situation.

One of the IWPS members stayed with the men waiting for their cars and papers, whilst the other two rang Hamoked , LAW, PHRG, Mahsoum Watch and Rabbis for Human Rights from the IWPS office. The Red Cross and B’Tselem heard about the incident from other sources and both send a delegation down to Kifl Hares.

Around 10:30 six army jeeps arrived, broke through the roadblock and drove into the village. It is unclear where they went and for what reason.

Mahsoum Watch sent four women to negotiate with the soldiers. The owner of the van with eggs used the opportunity to negotiate his car back. The women left after the soldiers told them about the CMZ. The driver of the jeep that B’Tselem sent to the checkpoint was told that he could not stop or get out of his car. He also left.

By this time, the soldiers had started to randomly stop and search vans and busses with Palestinian license plates passing along the Highway. They made ten men descend from a bus and wait in the full sun for 2 hours.

Around 15:30 the soldiers on duty changed. The new shift let the men waiting in the sun go and allowed the owner of the second car to leave with his vehicle. After interventions of the IWPS member and an Israeli friend, the soldiers allowed the owner of the house to water the plants for 10 minutes, a job that actually requires two hours every day. The soldiers pleaded with the women not to tell other soldiers about their decision to let the house owner enter his yard, because they expected to be punished for it.

After all the men had left and the house owner watered the plants, the women left the roadblock around 17:00 . The house remains occupied by soldiers. Rabbis for Human Rights informed IWPS per telephone that the army claims the roadblock will be closed permanently, because of its proximity to the entrance of Ariel settlement.

Report written by: Claire, Carolyn and Marlous

Date report written on: August 19, 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 47

Summary:

Soldiers destroy goods at Qarawa roadblock

Incident details

Date: June 29th, 2003

Time: Mid-afternoon

Place: Qarawat Bani Hassan

Description of Incident

A marble worker, had unloaded some cut marble from the west side of the roadblock at Qarawat Bani Hassan that he wanted to transport to his village in Marda. The cut marble slabs were neatly arranged, leaning against the concrete block at the roadblock awaiting re-loading into another vehicle on the east side of the metal gate at the roadblock.

He related how an Israeli army jeep drew up and soldiers got out and without any provocation came and smashed some of the marble slabs. They then got back into their jeep and left. It all happened within a quarter of an hour.

When IWPS arrived on the scene, the broken slabs were lying on the ground right. The Israeli liaison officer had been called and I was told that an officer was on his way. In the meantime, another jeep drove towards the roadblock, stayed just a minute and then turned around and drove off.

Ten minutes later another jeep came with the officer who came to take a report, noting down what the marble worker was telling him. The officer refused to answer to the IWPS worker and just strode off to the waiting jeep and drove away.

The marble worker had to wait to transport his marble until he heard that his village of Marda was no longer under curfew. A curfew of Marda had started the night before and had continued throughout that day.

Report written by: Barbara

Date report written on: July 1st, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 47-2

Summary of incident:

Military Invade Haris, detain 2 men.

Incident details -

Date:- 13th August 2003

Time:- 22:00

Place:- Hares

Witness:- Claire, Cathy, Maria, Marlous

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

  • At ten pm members of the team were sitting with Abu Rabbia when he received a call to say that an Army jeep had entered the village from the eastern side.
  • Ten minutes later, two jeeps began slowly making their way through the village announcing curfew.
  • Marlous, Claire and Cathy went out to witness the jeeps and ensure that all the villagers were safe.  A wedding was taking place in the village, in a house near to the IWPS.
  • IWPS approached the jeeps as they neared the top of the road and addressed the soldiers.  They told us that there had been shooting from ‘somewhere along the main road’ and that all the villages in the area were being placed under curfew.  IWPS accompanied a family (who were leaving the abandoned wedding) to their house near the school and then went to the roadblock and found two jeeps stationed there with soldiers holding up a party of men who were leaving from the wedding and trying to get home to Burquin.
  • The soldiers said the men were being detained until they had got the ‘all clear’ from the jeeps in the village.  IWPS filmed the scene and stood by the men who were conversing with the soldiers.  The scene was not particularly tense. The women and children of the group had been allowed to leave before IWPS arrived.
  • The men were detained for approximately half an hour after which they were allowed to leave.. Then the army jeeps left.
  • A border police jeep remained at the Biddya/Revava junction for a further ten minutes.  A villager told us he thought that a prisoner was held inside – but he was not sure
  • The police jeep left the scene at approximately 10:45 pm

Report written by: Claire

Date report written on: 14th August 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 46:

Summary:

Rocked fired into house in village of Azzawiya, West Bank
Incident details

Date: June 8th, 2003

Time: 11:00 p.m.

Place: Azzawiya (As Sawiya) in Salfit district, West Bank

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Around 11 p.m., an 80-year old woman and her daughter were watching television. A nephew, 22 years old, and visiting from another town, was sleeping in one of the bedrooms, when a rocket landed on their house, penetrating the roof and landing in a bedroom. Fortunately, no one was in that room and no one was hurt or killed, although they were all in a state of shock. The 80-year old’s legs would not function, her daughter fainted and the nephew lost the faculty of speech for a time.

At first, the family thought that the ensuing fire was from some electrical fault. Only later, once the fire was put out by neighbours using a garden hose, did they see that it was a rocket that had struck their house.

A neat hole was made at the point of entry into the flat roof of the house. Shrapnel from the rocket damaged the nearby water tank. Below in the bedroom everything was destroyed by the fire or the water used to put out the fire, including about ten mattresses, a bed, and a cupboard. The entire room is totally blackened and burnt.

The rocket was an Israeli-made rocket with Hebrew lettering on it. Its small parachute was still attached.

The village of Azzawiya has around 5,000 inhabitants. We were told that none of the villagers are wanted by the Israeli army.

The DCL for the Salfit area stated that it was fortunate that there was no explosive otherwise the family would have been killed immediately.

The Israeli DCO came around 10:30 a.m. with an army journalist to make an inspection and take photographs. The IDF spokesperson, when asked about the incident around 3 p.m., stated they had no report on this incident.

The family is wondering who will compensate them for the loss of the water tank, household goods and costs of fixing the roof. The family currently has no electricity because of all the water flooding the floors.

Report by: Barbara


IWPS Incident Report No. 45

Summary:

1 boy aged 11 years old killed in Qarawat Bani Zeid

Incident details

Date: May 26th, ‏2003

Time: 5:45 p.m.

Place: Qarawat Bani Zeid

Witness: Imad Arar and Ghanji Arar

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

The army entered the village at 5:30 p.m. in the evening. There were two army jeeps and around 14 soldiers. They left immediately after the killing.

The village is on a hill and so some houses are on higher ground than the centre of the village where the mosque is. People on the street who saw the soldiers quickly went inside, but the boy was sitting in the garden of his house located higher up the hill eating some bread and cucumber. The soldiers apparently told the drivers of cars that if the children shouted or whistled, they would kill them.

The boy was killed from a distance of around 300 m from a wall in the centre of the village near the mosque. An Israeli soldier shot him in the head and the bullet penetrated into his skull and killed him instantly.

This is the fifth killing in the village in just over a month

Report written by: Barbara and Nadya, IWPS
Date report written on: May 28th, 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 44

Summary:

2 people killed in Qarawat Bani Zeid, 1 injured

Incident details

Date: May 21st, ‏2003

Time: between 4 and 4:30 p.m.

Place: Qarawat Bani Zeid

Witness: X

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Between 11:30 in the morning and 1 p.m. of that day 4 jeeps came to the village from the settlement of Halmiesh.

Youths on the street threw stones at the jeep and the soldiers shot and wounded one youth near the school. He was sent to hospital and later released.

The soldiers came a second time, between 3:30 and 4 p.m. and a crowd of youths threw stones. The soldiers left the village by the East entrance where
the mosque is. After about half an hour, snipers shot from what is estimated to be about 500 meters away. They were not seen by anyone. The youth was shot halfway up a steep slope. We were told that the bullets used were 255 mm exploding bullets and that the shot entered his side and exited the opposite side. He went a few steps to lie down under a fig tree and died there.

The woman who was shot heard the boy crying and was going towards him. She was shot on the higher ground under a lemon tree and did not make it to where the boy lay. She is a mother of seven children, who lost her son in last month’s slaying (see report 40 below). The two were activists in the village and may have been deliberately assassinated.

Report written by: Barbara

Date report written on: May 22nd, 2003

IWPS Incident Report No. 42

Summary:

Break-in to offices of PPP
Incident details

Date: May 9th, 2003

Time: around 10:30 to 11 p.m.

Place: Office Palestinian People’s Party in Ramallah

Witness: Residents across the street

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the
relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

IWPS was asked to take photographs were taken of the offices after the break-in. Computer hard drives were stolen and some
documents were taken and others strewn on the floor.

Around 11 army jeeps were seen by people living across the street arriving at the building. This was not the first time that PPP
offices had been raided.

The incident is viewed by Palestinians as a political act and had nothing to do with security or the military. They see it as part of the Israeli policy of destroying any Palestinian infrastructure and any civilian organizations. It was not seen as directed specifically against PPP but rather against all Palestinians. Israel does not want to see grassroots movements that are truly democratic but rather wants to impose its own form of “democracy”.

Report written by: Barbara

Date report written on: May 16th. 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 41

Summary:

House demolition in Az-Zawiya

Incident details

Date: 13th May ‏2003

Time: 1 till 2 am

Place: Az-Zawiya

Witness: Whole family and neighbor families

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

At 1 am on Tuesday, May 13, 2003 the army arrived at the house. The owner opened the door. The rest of the family, wife and four children, were still sleeping at that time. According to the witnesses about 22 big and small jeeps arrived with about 100 soldiers. The army told the house owner, that he has 2 minutes to wake everybody up and leave the house. At that time,he did not know what was going to happen.

While the man woke his family up, the army lit up the whole house.

One soldier asked the owner if he knows why they came and explained then, that they came to demolish his house, because of his son. His son wanted to commit a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv on October 11, 2003 but finally did not do it and was imprisoned since then. So the house owner explained, that his son lived and worked in Israel for two years and has not been in the house and that they cannot punish the family for what their son did or wanted to do. He also told them, that the first trial will only take place on the 28th June 03 and that they should not do something before that date.

Then the soldier only gave the family 10 minutes to get their papers and some of the equipment, schoolbooks and clothes, before they bombed the house with about 150kg dynamite.

They evacuated the whole neighborhood into the school during the explosion. The house is totally destroyed. One house next to it which is under construction is partly destroyed and the windows of the neighbors’ houses are all broken. Everything left behind in the house, including toys, pots, pans, computers and the satellite dish was totally destroyed.

Report written by: Karin, IWPS

Date report written on: May 13, 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 40

Summary:

Killing and injuring of students in schoolyard

Incident details

Date: 24 April 2003 (report collected 26 April 2003)

Time: 10:30 a.m.

Place: Qarawat Bani Zeid High School

Victims: 2 Killed (student aged 17 years, labourer aged 23 year), 2 Injured

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

The incident took place in the schoolyard of the High School in Qarawat Bani Zeid which serves Qarawat Bani Zeid as well the village of Kafr ‘Ein. There are approximately 500 students and 20 teachers at the school. The students range from 10-19 years of age (from Grades 5 to 12).

At 7:45 a.m. the bell rang for the start of the school day, at 10:25 the bell for the break rang and all the students left their classrooms and went towards the cafeteria inside the schoolyard. Exactly at 10:30 a.m. the students started shouting “army, army” to alert everyone to the arrival of 3 jeeps and approximately 15 soldiers.

The soldiers stopped the jeeps approximately 50 meters in front the of the main school gate, just off the primary thoroughfare of the town. A teacher instructed the students via a loudspeaker to go back to their classrooms and to let the soldiers pass. Some of the students did not obey the request and threw stones. An unknown number of soldiers climbed a hill that overlooked the school courtyard. The soldiers then began shooting into the schoolyard from the hill as well from behind a few olive trees approximately 50 meters beyond the school gate. The student (17) who was killed was shot between a small outhouse and a cement barrier wall, through a corridor approximately 2 meters wide. The other man (23) who was killed was shot as he tried to pass through an olive grove at the side of the school to avoid the shooting.

We were told that this incident is only one in a sequence of abuses that the witness has seen in the village. The soldiers have repeatedly appeared at the school, preferring to arrive when the students are outside, in the morning before classes, in the morning break (when these shootings happened) or in the afternoon as classes finish.

The witness is aware of 15 additional villagers who have been shot and wounded in the past four months (January, February, March and April). Soldiers have increased the frequency of their visits. They have been appearing at the school from time to time for approximately five months, but in the last two months this has increased. Last month they started coming every day, sometimes two or three times in one day. They have been harassing the students regularly, sometimes injuring the students. Each incident that results in injury is reported to the Education Office in Ramallah.

The witness also reported that there are other forms of harassment directed at the general village population. The army has been entering the village late at night (23.00 – 1.00). They arrive on foot and call their units to come and pick them up when they are finished. The soldiers go door to door forcing people onto the street, entering the homes and breaking household items, seemingly at random. They often collect young men into groups (20 to 30 people). In the opinion of the witness, they are attempting to recruit collaborators.

We have encouraged the witness to contact us regarding further abuses. A follow-up call on May 2nd, 2003 revealed that there have been no further incidents since the killings.

Report written by: Barbara and Amy

Date report written on: 27 April 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 39

Summary:

Threat of house demolition

Incident details

Date: April 10th, 2003

Time: 8 p.m.

Place: Home that the army threatens to demolish

Witness: Family and neighbour

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

We took report on April 22, 2003

Description of Incident

We spoke to the mother of a man wanted by the Israelis. The army has come regularly since October 20, 2002 looking for him. They have been so many times, she no longer knows the accurate figure, citing hundreds. They could come one time, eight times or ten times a week. Sometimes they come once a day, sometimes two times or three times a day, most often at night. Each time they threaten to demolish the home. The building has five apartments and houses 25 people, 14 of whom are children.

During the incident they were told that they had 10 minutes to decide whether to give the whereabouts of their oldest son or risk the house being demolished.

The last visit was on April 10th, 2003. They arrived around 8:30 p.m. with about 9 jeeps and 2 bulldozers, one large, one small. Soldiers entered the house and put everyone out onto the street in the cold weather, including babies. They were allowed back in around midnight to find many things broken, the apartments ransacked. This is apparently the normal behaviour each time the soldiers come. The soldiers measured the house to see if there were any hidden rooms.

They beat the youngest son – not for the first time. Both other sons have been beaten by the soldiers on previous occasions.

We were told how the soldiers throw stones at their veranda breaking windows. See picture attached. Inside the houses they break anything made of glass, tip over wardrobes, break beds and bedroom furniture and generally ransack the place. They pull out clothes from wardrobes and stamp on them with their muddy boots. On one occasion the mother just left them there, too weary to pick them up and the next time the soldiers came, they taunted her asking her why she had not picked them up. They have broken a camera to ensure that the family does not take pictures of the damage they cause. They frighten the mother by emptying her house of furniture while she is at work and she comes home to find her furniture on the street. She has taken to having the apartment sparsely furnished.

She is upset about how the soldiers play with their emotions. On one occasion, they took an 8-year old boy in the extended family and put him in a room on his own with soldiers who questioned him and asked him about his uncle, frightening the child who peed in his pants. The first time the soldiers came to the house, they exploded a sound bomb on the balcony of one of the homes, rendering one woman deaf for a couple of days.

They say that none of the doors lock because of damage done to them and that once in the hallway, the soldiers fired 76 shots from a machine gun.

Hamoked took a report November 2002 and said a lawyer would be involved following up the case, but the family has not heard from them to-date.

The family asked if there is not a law prohibiting this kind of thing. They ask if the army can demolish a house without a written order.

Date report written on: 22nd April 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 38

Summary:

Young man shot in Salfit

Incident details

Date: 07.04.2003

Time: 8.30pm

Place: A cafe in the town of Salfit.

Witness: Friends of the victim at the cafe with him. A woman at the house where the incident took place.

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

B., a young man in his early twenties, was drinking coffee with some friends outside a cafى in Salfit. Darkness had fallen by this time. A bus load of Israeli military snipers drove by and targeted B. shooting him a number of times: his mother said there were 35 bullet holes in him, from his head all down his body. It is obvious from the circumstances that the intention of the Israelis was to kill that one particular person quite deliberately. B’s mother and daughter said they believed this targeting was the result of information given to the Israelis by collaborators.

B had never been in prison. His work was with local government in Salfit.

6 months before soldiers had come to ask for him and had ransacked his family home and also their neighbour’s home. The same happened 1 month ago. B’s younger brother aged 14 had been picked up by the Israelis on a previous occasion, questioned about his brother and beaten up, then dumped in Yasouf in the early hours.


IWPS Incident Report No. 37
Summary:

harassment by settlers and soldiers and village land under threat.

Incident details

Date: March 13/14, 2003

Time: start – 8:00-9:00 p.m.

Place: Madama Village

Witness: residents from Madama Village

Contact details: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Description of Incident

Madama is a village in the Nablus Governate. A settler road was built along one part of the village about three years ago, cutting into village land.

Between 8:00 and 9:00 p.m. on March 13th, a settler came into the town and started shooting at houses. He said that he had been shot at by a man from the village while he was driving on the settler road. After he started shooting, 35-40 soldiers arrived in 8-9 jeeps. The soldiers said that they were imposing a curfew that would last for three-four days. They went from house to house, collecting all of the men of the village – youths to those of middle age (approximately 40 men in total) -, telling them to go to the village school. When some of the men went out into the street, soldiers who were there beat them, asking why they were breaking curfew. The soldiers beat one young man twice – once in the night and again in the morning. He’s a top student at university. The men were questioned at the school but no one was arrested. They were held there for one hour.

The soldiers told the settler “Look at what we’re doing for you.” They targeted, in particular, the homes near the settler road, shooting at the concrete walls, and into windows. There were bullet holes on either side of the homes. The soldiers also shot and damaged water tanks on the roofs. They searched the homes, terrorizing the families. In one home they pushed the owner’s elderly father (a man in his 70’s), throwing clothes at him and accusing his elderly wife of shooting at the settler, while cursing and taunting her. At sunrise they told the owner of this home that they would demolish his house because he must have seen who shot the settler and yet he wouldn’t co-operate with them. They threatened to cut all of his olive trees. They said to many in the village that they would come back at 5:00 p.m. on the 14th and cut down all of the trees by the settler road.

In another home, the owner’s wife was shot at while in one of the home’s bedrooms. This occurred at approximately 8:00 p.m on the 13th. The bullet hit the metal grating of the bedroom window and this possibly prevented her from being seriously injured. The soldiers then entered the home at 11:00 p.m., banging at the door. When the owner opened it, soldiers stood in front of him, their guns pointing at his face. They ordered him to leave his family and go to the village school. He was afraid for his wife and children. The soldiers searched the home, pointing their guns and lights at the children and taking off their blankets. In a third home two water tanks were damaged and there were bullet holes in the walls near the tanks. The children in this home didn’t sleep all night.

The soldiers told the villagers that curfew was in effect, but that they would be allowed to attend the first part of prayer during the day (Friday, the 14th), but for the rest of the time, they would have to stay inside their homes. In the afternoon of the 14th many people were still inside their homes, afraid to leave them. Army jeeps drove by the village on the settler road at approximately 5:00 p.m. on the evening of 14th but did not enter the village that night.

We received a call from our contact on March 16th – Sunday. Soldiers had re-entered the village and imposed a curfew. IWPS telephoned members of ISM who went to the village – the soldiers had gone by the time they arrived. ISM remained in the village until early evening.

On Thursday, March 20, 2003 the village was served with a Military Order; village trees on land adjacent to the settler road would all be cut down – approximate area is 120 metres long and 15 metres wide. The village was also served with an aerial photograph of the area where the trees were to be cut. The deadline for fighting against the Order was Sunday, March 23, 2003. The villagers are attempting to get a lawyer in order to fight the tree removal.


IWPS Incident Report No. 36

Summary:

Reoccupation of house in Salfit

Incident details

Date: 9 March 2003

Time: 12:00 midnight

Place: Home of Wa’el Hassan Mohammed Al Yassin, Salfit

Witnesses: IWPS Team Members Ayesha, Dunya and Patricia

Description of Incident:

At midnight on Sunday 9 March Israeli soldiers returned to the house of Wa’el Al Yassin, which they had occupied for a number of days on 22 February (see IWPS Incident Report No. 35). IWPS team members Ayesha, Dunya and Patricia were told about the reoccupation the following morning (Monday 10 March) and we went to see what we could do.

We were told that there were about a hundred soldiers, far more than the last time, and that they brought a large amount of equipment with them. The soldiers got all the members of the family (nine people) outside and made them stay in the cold for two hours (including a baby of five months). In the meantime they went through the house, searching, and damaging things (for example, we saw that pictures and light fittings had been broken, shoes thrown onto the road, carpets ripped up to cover windows, and stone railings had been knocked through). There was a strong smell of petrol when we arrived, which apparently came from a canister of petrol (belonging to the father of the family, Wa’el Al Yassin) that had been broken on the road.

Wa’el Al Yassin said he told the soldiers they could use the top floor but instead they locked the family into half of the second floor and occupied the rest of the house. The family were locked inside when we arrived; the house phone had been removed. Our visit coincided with one by representatives of the Red Cross (Nerea from the Jerusalem office and Hani from the Salfit office). We spoke to the family after the Red Cross had, and established that their most pressing need was to be able to send the baby to the clinic the next day for an appointment, as well as sending the ten-year-old, Talib, to school.

On Tuesday 11 March IWPS members Ayesha and Patricia returned to the occupied house in order to accompany two of the women and a baby to the health clinic; the soldiers allowed us in and let the women leave with us. It seemed that in the following days members of the family did leave the house when they needed to, but they had to knock on the door and request permission from the soldiers to be let out of the second floor area.

When Ayesha called a neighbour on 17 March to see what the situation was, he told her that the soldiers had finally left the house the night before. The family requested that we come and see just how much damage the soldiers had done during their occupation of the house.

The above Israeli measures violate international law. Home occupation constitutes collective punishment. Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention forbids collective punishment and states that a person shall not be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. This article explicitly relates to administrative punishment imposed on persons or groups because of acts that they did not personally commit. Article 50 of the Hague Regulations states a comparable prohibition.

Contacts: IWPS withholds this information as a courtesy to those involved – we will do our best to furnish you with all the relevant information you might need to begin action.

Date report written on: 19 March 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 35

Summary:

House in Salfit occupied

Incident details

Date: February 21, 2003

Time: 2:30 p.m.

Place: home of Wa’el Yassan Hassim

Witness: Maren, Laura, Patricia

Description of Incident

At 1:00 p.m. IWPS received a call from Abu Rabia who told us that a home in Salfit had been occupied by Israeli soldiers. We (Maren, Laura and Patricia) arrived in Salfit at about 2:15 p.m. We were driven to a place behind the house that was being occupied by the Israeli military (8 or 9 people from one family were being held on the second floor). The driver stopped in front of a home – one of the members received us (they are related to those whose home is being occupied). Laura stayed with that family while Patricia and Maren went back to the main road.

Laura was told by this family that the house had been occupied at 10:00 p.m. the previous day; that the telephone line had been cut, and that there had been 10 minutes of shooting when the soldiers occupied the house. The house was chosen for strategic reasons, it was the tallest home in the area. The soldiers then arrested 10-12 people who were on the road in front of the house and took them inside the home.

The camera had been left with Laura. Maren and Patricia had only walked part way when Maren went back to get it. While she did so Patricia waited behind a home near the road. Standing there, she could see a large group of men, their hands above their heads, walking slowly down the road toward the occupied house. We found out from neighbours that these men were part of the Palestinian Authority security forces.

Maren and Patricia got to the main road and approached the home. Patricia phoned the DCO, saying she was from IWPS, and asked them what was going on and why. The person who answered said that they would get back to us. They did a few minutes later, telling us that what was going on was a military operation; the family were okay, they would not be harmed. We were told no more than that.

There was a wall in front of the home, set back from it by about 10 feet. Soldiers were standing on the porch. They had their back to us. The men who had been rounded up were being taken into the home a few at a time. We got to the home and told the soldiers that we had been called by the family and that we wanted to see them and speak to them; know how they were. The soldiers wouldn’t let us. They turned to walk back. Two women approached them, one carrying a baby. She was the daughter of the owner of the home. We accompanied them and went back to the home, knocked on the door. Two soldiers opened it – the daughter spoke to the soldiers, saying it was her home, she wanted to see her family. One soldier answered telling her that it was not her home, but the home of the Israeli army. He went on further, stating that they had a list of family members who lived there, that she actually didn’t live in the home and couldn’t be with them. She was angry and upset with this response. We continued to question why she wasn’t allowed in. The soldiers were adamant that the two women and baby wouldn’t be let in. We went down the porch steps. The young woman with the baby called up to where the family were being held. Her father opened the window – they spoke and the two women decided to leave.

As Maren and I walked back we saw that some men were being released from the home. We came up to them and asked what had happened. They said they had been held for a short time and let go, but beyond that, they didn’t say more. We went back to the home where Laura was staying, then came back to a small shop that was on the main street near the home. The people at the shop told us that the military had released 15 men, and 5 were still being held.

As of February 22, 2003, the family of Wa’el Yassan Hassim were still being held as prisoners in their own home.

Report written by: Patricia

Date report written on: February 23, 2003


IWPS Incident Report No. 34

Summary:

House demolition in Jemai’in

Date and time: 19 February 2003, between 12.30 am and 4 am
Place: Jemai’in village, Salfit
Witnesses: Family and neighbors

Description of incident

IWPS got a call early evening of the 19th of February 2003 that a house had been demolished in Jama’in the night before. Dunya and Laura went immediately to the family. The following is the account that was told to us by, Aarif S. the uncle of the man whose home was demolished.

The army arrived at the home in 4-5 jeeps at 12:30 am while the family was sleeping. The army used the butt of a gun to break the windows of the home and kicked in the door of the neighboring house and the family was told that the house would be destroyed in ten minutes. Both the family and their neighbors were forced to stand outside and watch during the entire operation

Nafez N.H., the home’s owner is 25 years old and has been in prison for 7 months. He is being held in prison on what is called Administrative Detention*. In the home at the time were the Nafez’s wife, daughter and son. They gathered some clothes but did not have time to take any of their furniture or additional belongings with them and left the house. The home was then imploded at around 4 am and is now completely collapsed. The soldiers left just after their operation was concluded.

The adjacent house also suffered significant damage. Stress cracking in the walls and ceiling, broken doors, doorways and windows and burn marks from the explosion were in all in evidence. This home’s stone kitchen counter and cupboards were broken and askew and their china was cracked and strewn about. The windows of three neighboring houses were blown out by the explosion as well.

This home demolition constitutes collective punishment. Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention forbids collective punishment and states that a person shall not be punished for an offense he or she has not personally committed. This article explicitly relates to administrative punishment imposed on persons or groups because of acts that they did not personally commit. Article 50 of the Hague Regulations states a comparable prohibition. (Bt’selem)

*Administrative Detention is a status in which without a person may be held by the State of Israel with no charge and the period of incarceration, again without charging the person, is commonly extended for 6 months at a time. Although and appeal before a military court is possible, it is largely considered futile.


IWPS Incident Report No. 32

Date: 11 February 2003, Tuesday (Aid al-Kibir), 1:30-2:00 p.m.

Place: Hares, at the entrance of the village near the road block

Witness: neighbours of Abu Fadih

Contacts Aarif Salem (home 259.60.67; work 259. 61.01)

At 2 pm we (IWPS in Hares) received a phone call from Sheikh Y.

Sheikh Y’s house is at the edge of the village and the water tank on the roof of his house had just been shot by a settler. Witnesses said that the settler had a long beard and drove a white van. In the van there were two other people. They said the settler was from Immanuel. He stopped on the edge of the road for about five minutes and then he shot one bullet at the water tank on the roof . Witnesses said that an army car and a police car were also there, but they did not do anything to stop the settler. After the shooting the settler left. Some villagers tried to talk to the police to convince them to go and check the roof of the home, but they refused to go.

I (Laura) arrived on the scene about 20/30 minutes after the episode. An army car arrived a few minutes later and stopped on the road near the entrance of the village. I approached the soldiers, accompanied by Sheikh Yasin and another man who could talk Hebrew. We told the soldiers what had happened but the soldiers said that it was not possible, and that there had been no shooting at all in the previous hours. Sheikh Yasin, the other man and I told the army to come and check the home, but they refused to do so.

We called the police (number 100) but no one spoke English. Then the man who speaks Hebrew tried to talk to the police but the police hung up on him.

I called Dunya (IWPS team member) who gave me the phone number of some Israeli women who could speak to the police in Hebrew. I called Neta Effroni (Checkpoint Watch). Neta phoned the police in Ariel. They said that this was not their business and to phone the army, so she phoned the army (DCO). At first they said that the incident was a police matter, then they promised that they would try to do something.


IWPS Incident Report #31

Summary

Two young boys detained in Hares
Date and time: Wednesday, January 15, 2003, 8:00 p.m.

Place: East end of Hares village

Witnesses: Nijmie, Kate, family of Mahmoud D., family of Masrour S.

Description of Incident

A 20 year old man named Mahmoud Abdellatif D. was taken from outside his family’s home on the night of Jan. 15, 2003. Kate and Nijmie went to the scene after coming from the East end of the village where two boys had been taken two hours earlier. We followed the lights to the opposite end of the village where we found three army jeeps parked outside a house. A total of eight soldiers were standing around the jeep, and in the headlights, the older brother of Mahmoud as well as his father were being questioned. Mahmoud’s brother is Abu Karim, and his mother and father are Um and Abu Fahd. The soldiers demanded to see Mahmoud, Abu Karim’s younger brother, and stated that they merely wanted to question him. The family complied and sent word for Mahmoud to return to the house. This process took about an hour, during which time one soldier went into the family’s compound for several minutes. Kate and Nijmie watched the events unfolding, and Kate took a couple of pictures. At one point the soldiers instructed us about where to stand but other than that they did not interfere with us. Nijmie asked the soldiers whether or not the two boys were in the jeep, and if and when they would be released. The soldiers replied that the boys were picked up for questioning and would not be arrested.

After waiting for Mahmoud for about half an hour, the jeeps left the house and went to the nearby home of Masrour S. They knocked and called everyone out. Kate followed them; she knew the family and went to be with them. The father is mostly deaf, and there was a verbal altercation between him and the soldiers, and then one between him and his sons. The soldiers stayed at this house for more than half an hour, pointing guns around the compound while the young children watched. They were all frightened and several were crying. Eventually the soldiers appeared satisfied that the person they wanted was not home, and went back to the house of Mahmoud D.

When Mahmoud appeared, the soldiers questioned him in the headlights of the jeep for a few minutes, and then grabbed him and put him in the jeep. Nijmie asked where Mahmoud was being taken but was given no response by the soldiers.

Follow up required:A call to the family the next morning yielded the information that Mahmoud had been released back to his family at 7:30 on the morning of Jan. 16. No further follow-up to the situation was requested by the family.

Filed By: Nijmie and Kate, January 26, 2003


IWPS Incident Report #30

Summary: Two young boys detained in Hares

Date and time: Wednesday, January 15, 2003, 4:30 p.m.

Place: Central square, Hares village

Witnesses: Abu Fadi

Description of Incident

Two boys, Mohammed Hani O.D. (age 12), and Rami Aiman O.D. (age 13), were snatched by the army on their way home from the barbershop. Witnessess report that the boys were treated roughly (one described “beaten”) and thrown into the back of an army jeep. The boys’ father and mother are called Abu Shaikat and Im Shaikat. Nijmie and Kate from IWPS went to the scene (about 20 meters in the village from the roadblock) after being called by Abu Fadi. We spoke to people at the scene and got the phone number of the family. After being made aware that the army was still in the village we left the scene to find out where they went and if they boys were still in the back of the jeep, promising to keep in touch and to attempt to find the boys.

Filed By: Nijmie, January 26, 2003


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IWPS Incident Report #29

Summary: Army threatens to demolish a home in Madama, Nablus as collective punishment

Date and time: January, 25th, 2003

Place: Madama village, near Huwara checkpoint, Nablus

Witnesses: Family and relatives; Ahmed H.

Description of Incident

Someone called IWPS around 16:00 hours, Saturday, January 25th to say that a family in Madama had received a warning by the army that their house would be demolished within the next 24 hours. The demolition is intended to punish the family of a 23-year-old who died in an attack at Ariel in March 2002. There are 8 members of the household, including six children.

Dorothىe and Dunya telephoned to Jeff Halper who advised us to telephone LAW. The field rep. from LAW, Hassib, is not reachable.
Telephone to ISM Nablus who are informed since the morning. They are able to send two people to the village and the house.
Telephone to Arik, who advises to telephone Hamoked for legal part of the work. These were informed since the morning about the warning and threat.
Tel. to Hamoked. Tel to Al Haq, no answer.
Telephone to Ta’yush, Talli who doubts someone will come and stay in the house that is threatened of destruction.

January 27, 2003:

ISM will continue a presence in the house.
Ahmed, is a “psychological social worker” working with the family; we have continued to be in touch.
Hamoked has assigned a lawyer to the case. Mysa from their office is our contact. They feel pessimistic about stopping the demolition
Dunya spoke again with Arik and he also feels pessimistic about stopping the demolition but wants to be kept informed.

Filed By: Dorothىe R., Dunya A.

Human Rights Reports


Summary of IWPS reports July to September 2003
Article:
During the three months July to September 2003, IWPS reported on human rights violations in the immediate area in which IWPS operates. IWPS does not attempt comprehensive documentation, and these are likely to be only a tiny proportion of the violations taking place in the area during that period.

Summaries of human rights violation documented are given below under the following six categories: closure, demolition, land and crops, detention and arrest, settler violence, and violation of the right to education.

1. Closure of villages

A closed military zone was imposed at Kifl Hares roadblock on August 19. Soldiers barred access to the village and those beyond. IWPS documented the consequences for daily lives, including damage to produce and crops. IWPS intervened and was eventually able to have a plant nursery owner allowed through for 10 minutes to water plants. The report highlights military statements regarding possible long-term closure. (Incident report 48)

Kifl Hares farmers were prevented from picking olives from trees that had been by the sawn down by the Israeli military near Ariel settlement. IWPS and Israeli activist intervention eventually secured access for the day so that farmers could salvage some olives. (Incident report 52)

2. Demolition of buildings

A house in A-Ras was given a 3-day notice of demolition. This ‘unlicensed’ house is close to a settlement. IWPS investigated on September 23 and contacted Palestinian and Israeli legal action groups to take this case. (Incident report 54)

Israeli soldiers entered Hares with Israeli officials August 21; residents reported to IWPS that this concerned the threatened demolition of a building used as a store. (Incident report 49)

3. Destruction of land and crops for settlement

Settlers from Revava settlement were seen on September 2 and September 6 expanding the settlement on Hares village land. IWPS were approached by the farmer, and investigated. (Incident report 50)

September 18 the army cut down several dozen olive trees on Kifl Hares land next to Ariel settlement. (Incident report 52)

4. Military arrests, detention and harassment

Arrests at Masha. A detailed IWPS report was prepared on arrests of 46 protestors on August 5th during a demonstration against the Wall. It also gives background on the wall and on the family who are cut off from the rest of the village by the Wall. (House report 39)

Around 70 men were detained at Azun checkpoint for 24 hours or more on 23rd Sept., after they allegedly tried to avoid the checkpoint. IWPS interviewed the men. This is an ongoing problem. (Incident report 55)

IWPS watching the Hares roadblock were harassed by soldiers who entered the village September 14. (Incident report 51)

5. Settler violence

IWPS and Hares villagers were harassed by settlers when they went to investigate land destruction on 6 September. (Incident report 50)

6. Violation of right to education

IWPS prepared two detailed reports on the violation of the right to education. One describes the impact of the Wall on education in three villages: Sawiya (due to closed military zones and settler attacks), Ras Atiya (where students and teachers held demonstrations at the gate in the Wall); and Deir Ballut (where a new school lies unused and unfinished because of threats by the Israeli authorities).

The other report describes the situation in Jubara village, where the Wall prevents access for school, and the impact on daily life that the Wall has. It documents the events when students and teachers held a demonstration at the gate in the Wall to be allowed to go to school. (IWPS report 40. Yes, yes education. No, no occupation; IWPS report 42. Jubara students defend the right to education.)

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