Applies to CPTnet releases from Palestine projects

AT-TUWANI REFLECTION: Summer days in the South Hebron Hills

What are summer days like here in the South Hebron Hills? It depends. On a good day, we sit with Palestinian shepherds as they nonviolently resist Israeli settlers, who have used violence to seize the land. The Palestinians graze sheep on lands where Israeli settlers have attacked, stoned, shot at, and threatened Palestinian shepherds. We sit, listen to the shepherds tell us stories of life on the land before the Israeli occupation. We laugh together, and the shepherds teach us how to flick tiny pebbles between our two index fingers.

AT-TUWANI: March from At-Tuwani to Tuba a success

On 2 August, more than one hundred children and their parents from the South Hebron Hills marched from the village of At-Tuwani to the village of Tuba, calling for an end to settler violence and settlement expansion in the area. The march was a part of the annual South Hebron Hills summer camp for children and a response to recent settler attacks on children walking to the summer camp in At-Tuwani.

The children and their parents, accompanied by a few Israelis and internationals, took the most direct path to the village of Tuba. For the past eleven years, school children escorted by the Israeli military have been the only Palestinians able to use this road. Palestinian parents organized the march to call attention to the violence faced by school children, the failure of the Israeli army to protect them and the effects of Israeli settlement expansion.

AT-TUWANI: CPTer faces possible deportation

The Israeli authorities detained Kristin Anderson, a U.S. citizen working with Christian Peacemaker Teams in the South Hebron Hills, today during a non-violent action in At-Tuwani and may deport her. Israeli soldiers took Anderson's bag and passport, and police detained her when she stayed behind to retrieve them; they then took her to the Kiryat Arba police station. The Israeli authorities may move her to the Russian Compound in Jerusalem for a trial and possible deportation.

AT-TUWANI: Drought in South Hebron Hills worsened by Israeli occupation

At-Tuwani and neighboring villages are in the worst drought-affected area of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). Only 13% of the expected rainfall came in the Hebron area in the winter of 2007-08. Two weeks ago, At-Tuwani villagers told Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) that only around one week's supply of water was left in the village's wells and cisterns.

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers attack children for the fourth time in one week

On Wednesday 30 July, settlers attacked fourteen Palestinian children between the ages six to twelve on their way from summer camp to their homes in the villages of Tuba and Maghayer Al-abeed. Five settlers hid themselves along the route of the children and waited for them. When the children approached, the settlers began yelling, swearing, and throwing rocks at them. One settler jumped over the settlement fence and chased the children on a path leading to the village of Tuba. The Israeli soldiers assigned to protect the children (in a Jeep marked 611019) abandoned the children approximately 500 meters earlier, thereby failing to complete the escort of the children as ordered by the Israeli Knesset.

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers attack Palestinian children, CPTers, on journey home from summer camp

At 1:50 pm, on Sunday, 27 July, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian children between the ages of six and fifteen and Christian Peacemaker Team (CPT) members Joel Gulledge and Jan Benvie, who were accompanying them as they walked to their village of Tuba. The children had been attending summer camp in At-Tuwani.

As the fourteen children and two CPTers were walking in a valley south of the Havat Ma'on settlement outpost, one masked settler came down the hill, hurling stones with a slingshot. The children and Benvie ran ahead, but saw other stone-throwing settlers approaching them from the opposite side of the valley. None of the stones struck the children, however, and they were able to run to safety.  

When the masked settler saw Gulledge filming the attack, he began directing his stones at Gulledge. The settler hit him in the leg with a rock, inflicting an injury that made it impossible for Gulledge to run away. The settler then wrested the camera from him, and began beating him with a rock and the camera. After that, the settler ran off with the camera. Gulledge was treated for his injuries at a hospital in Hebron and then returned to At-Tuwani.

AT-TUWANI: Armed settlers enter village, threaten Palestinians and internationals; Israeli police refuse to intervene

On Friday 25 July at 10:30 a.m., three Israeli settlers, one masked and accompanied by a dog, left the Havat Ma'on settlement outpost and followed a Palestinian shepherd and his young son into the village of At-Tuwani. Over to the next hour, the settlers remained in the village shouting insults at the residents of the village and threatening to shoot them.

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers chase Palestinian children on their way to summer camp; Israeli military fails to protect children

On Wednesday 23 July, three Israeli settlers, one masked and wielding a stick, pursued fourteen Palestinian children who were on their way to a summer camp in At-Tuwani.  The children from the villages of Tuba and Maghaer Al-Abeed waited thirty minutes for the Israeli military escort that should have accompanied them on the most direct road between the villages of Tuba and At-Tuwani.  When the military failed to arrive, the children began walking along a long path through the hills to At-Tuwani.  When the children neared the Israeli settlement outpost of Havat Ma'on, three settlers with two dogs came out from the outpost and began walking in the direction of the children. 

SOUTH HEBRON HILLS REFLECTION: Living as an act of resistance-Kiryat Arba settlers steal all belongings of shepherd family

On Friday, 18 July 2008, Marius (another CPT intern) and I were on our way to Tel Arad, a Bedouin village in Israel that is not receiving any water from the Israeli government.  Just after we crossed into Israel, our ride, Arik Ascherman of Rabbis for Human Rights, got a call about an attack in the South Hebron Hills and we went to investigate.

Thirty settlers had arrived in cars at 9:30 that morning on a family's land near As-Samua  After attacking Mahmoud* and his family, the settlers took everything-the tent where the family lived next to their flocks, food, clothes, dishes, blankets.

HEBRON: Settlers decry "Activities of Leftist Organizations"

Recently, settlers in Hebron have increasingly demanded that the Israeli police remove Israeli and international peace and human rights organizations from the H-2 area of the city. Soldiers and settlers have succeeded in preventing two Israeli Breaking the Silence tours (see below) from entering Hebron, and police have informed CPTers they may not be in any of the areas where they might have contact with settlers-areas in which settlers attack and harass their Palestinian neighbors. Below is a section from the brochure that the settlers have been handing out to tour groups, entitled, "Inequality & Discrimination in Hebron. In contrast to the false anti-Jewish and anti-Israeli propaganda, here are the real facts: FACTS."