July 26, 2004
HEBRON UPDATE: July 11-16, 2004
Sunday, July 11
On patrol in the evening, CPTers Lorin Peters and Jim Satterwhite drank tea
with some men near the Hebron Rehabilitation Center. The men expressed
appreciation for CPT, saying that CPT's presence deters arbitrary searches
and harassment by Israeli soldiers.
Monday, July 12
CPTers Chris Brown and Peters observed Israeli military special forces
staffing the Beit Romano checkpoint.
CPTers Christy Bischoff and Jim Satterwhite, accompanied by a
translator,left for an overnight in Ar Ramadin. They met with a number of
families who had had their homes demolished or were living under threat of
home demolitions, families who had had olive groves destroyed, and families
the Israeli military had forbidden to work their farmland. Some of the
families are paying to have water trucked in, because the Israeli military
had demolished their cisterns have been demolished. (See forthcoming report
on Ar Ramadin.)
Tuesday, July 13
CPTers Brown and Peters with two guests observed a bulldozer moving cement
blocks together to block the street at Abraham's Well. Cement blocks had
also been shifted 100 yards down Shalaileh Street, which opened up the
intersection at the Bab iZaweyya. The team learned later that this was a
"relaxation of restrictions."
The CPTers learned from a friend that the military had served eight homes
with demolition orders in Yatta and that the military uprooted fifty olive
trees in Beit Ummar, because they were on "state land."
CPTers Kristin Anderson, Donna Hicks, and Diane Janzen visited the UN Office
for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to share information on
closures, house demolitions, and probable path of the "security fence."
Upon returning to the CPT office with three guests they found two
Palestinian women who had been referred to CPT by the Hebron Rehabilitation
Committee. The Israeli military had taken over the home of the son of one
of the women and searched it on Saturday, July 10, 2004. Hicks and Janzen,
along with a translator for the team, accompanied the women to the home.
They learned that the Israeli military had occupied the home all day on
Saturday. The soldiers refused to leave when international observers
On Monday, the whole family was at a wedding when the Israeli military
returned and broke into the house. A neighbor warned the family, and they
stayed at a relative's home. On Tuesday, the daughter-in-law and the mother
went to the house at 8:00 am. The Israeli soldiers there were holding a
picture of the son and said they wanted him and his younger brother. The
mother asked why the soldiers had not taken him on Saturday. The family was
able to contact the younger brother and both went to the mosque police
station. The police checked their ID's and let them go. The soldier patrol
that had been at the house saw the mother and her sons and called them
liars. One of the soldiers said, "You are mine. You belong to me."
While the mother was at the Hebron Rehabilitation Center reporting the
incidents, soldiers went to
the son's house again and told his wife they would handcuff her and kill her
before she can kill the Jews. While CPT was visiting, Janzen was able to
call the DCO and the mother was able to report the incident in Arabic to the
Wednesday, July 14
CPTers Christy Bischoff and Satterwhite visited a Palestinian family who
live on Tel Rumeida. The father recounted that Israeli soldiers searched
the house on July 10, after evacuating the family, and checked ID's, even
the women's. They looked at family photos, asking who people were and
saying that they needed to speak with them.
Thursday, July 15
Satterwhite phoned at 8:30am to say soldiers were stopping everyone at Beit
Romano and Bab iZaweyya. Anderson, Bischoff, and Hicks responded and
Israeli soldiers cursorily searched their bags at Beit Romano. The
soldiers were stopping everyone from heading towards the Old City. After
soldiers finished checking an area, people were able to move closer to the
Old City. However, they prevented people from going down a side walkway
near Abraham's Well to some shops. A news photographer told the CPTers that
some Palestinians had called the Israeli military because they feared there
was a bomb outside their shop. After an hour, the military moved off in two
military jeeps. The CPTers returned home. At the Beit Romano checkpoint,
the Israeli civilian police had set up a table with fingerprinting equipment
on it, but would not tell CPT what the the equipment was for. A shopkeeper
said the police were stopping men and fingerprinting them.
Bischoff, Hicks, Janzen, and Peters met with leaders and volunteers to
continue planning for the next Festival Shopping Day in the Old City.
Around 6:30pm, Satterwhite observed Israeli settler boys throwing stones at
the CPT office window. They cracked three of the window panes.
Friday, July 16
Hicks and Peters, accompanied by a team translator, visited a couple around
the corner whose home, stable, and roof areas have been entered by Israeli
settlers on tours of the Old City. When accompanied by soldiers, the
settlers look at the site and pray. When unaccompanied, they have entered
the house and tossed furnishings around, although nothing has been broken.
The settlers believe the house to have been a Jewish home because of the
Star of David carved on the keystone on the home's archway.