HEBRON Update 27 - 31 October 2005
12 November, 2005
HEBRON Update 27-31 October 2005
Thursday, 27 October
The team learned from an online report from the
Ha'aretz newspaper that the previous day settler youth
had established a new outpost beside Worshippers' Way
(Wad Annassara). The Israeli military had attempted
to dismantle it but had withdrawn in the face of
violent resistance by settlers.
Friday, 28 October
Anne Montgomery, Maureen Jack, and Kristin Anderson went to the
neighborhoods of Jabal Johar and Haret Jaber to investigate the situation.
They observed piles of stones, that would block vehicles, at intervals
across the road. Palestinians reported that settlers had placed them there.
A Palestinian family living across the road from the
new outpost told the CPT members of recent harassment
from settlers. They said that since the outpost had
been set up settlers had repeatedly thrown stones at
their house. In the early hours of the previous
morning settlers had entered the family's land, ripped
up plastic covering their vegetable garden, damaging
plants, broken off the trunk of a young fig tree, and
destroyed irrigation pipes. The mother told the CPT
members, "We are forbidden to leave our houses because
every time we open our door settlers throw stones."
The CPT members then visited Palestinian friends
nearby. The daughter said that young Palestinians
dream of praying at the Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.
"It is now easier for Palestinians to travel to Mecca
than to Jerusalem," she said.
A family living above the outpost invited the CPT
members onto their roof to photograph the outpost.
Settlers had occupied an unfinished
Palestinian building and put up several small
tarpaulin structures and a standpipe. From the roof
CPT members saw Israeli police and military push a
peaceful demonstration back up Worshippers' Way past
the new settler outpost as settler youth stood and
watched. The Group demonstrating were Israeli 'Peace
That afternoon, near the Gutnick Centre checkpoint at
the Tomb of Abraham / the Ibrahimi Mosque, Anderson,
Jack and Montgomery observed Special Forces checking
the IDs of Palestinians on their way home to break the
Ramadan fast. They forced the Palestinians to stand
spread-eagled against a wall.
Saturday, 29 October
During most of morning school patrol, CPT members
observed soldiers allowing children and teachers to
pass through the checkpoint at the mosque without
going through the metal detectors. Around 8:00 am,
however, the soldiers took the position that all Palestinians had to go
through the metal detector checkpoint. After some negotiation, the soldiers
allowed six school boys to pass without going through the metal detectors.
Though the CPT members told them that teachers had routinely been allowed to
by-pass the metal detectors, the soldiers insisted that the three pregnant
female teachers who had been waiting with the boys would have to pass
through them. The three teachers refused to comply, and after fifteen
minutes they left to go a different way to school, by which time they were
Around 1:00 p.m. Jack and Anderson went on patrol to
the Haret Jaber
(Worshipper's Way in Hebrew) and Jabal Johar area. Some of the stones across
the road had been removed, but the outpost was still in place.
On their return, as they approached Beit Romano, a
checkpoint near the CPT house, they saw an angry
confrontation between the Israeli soldiers and a group
of Palestinian men. As they made their way forward
they saw soldiers manhandling a Palestinian man. Anderson moved to intervene
and Jack took a photograph. One of the soldiers roughly shoved both CPT
members away. Anderson and Jack stayed to monitor the situation until it
calmed. The cause of the confrontation was unclear, but one Palestinian
suggested that soldiers had assaulted a young man.
Later Anderson and Diane Janzen went with a translator to visit a house
which they had seen soldiers enter with dogs earlier in the week. The family
told the CPT members that for two years soldiers and border police had been
coming into their homes most days, sometimes 2-3 times a day and taking over
the top floor living room, kitchen and bathroom, refusing to allow the
family access. The family told many stories of how the soldiers mistreat
them, behave disrespectfully in their home, and abuse their property. The
family has been too frightened to complain or publicize the abuse because
senior officers are among the perpetrators.
Sunday, 30 October
In the late morning, Jack and Montgomery went on a
patrol of Worshippers' Way. Israeli soldiers had
reinstated the piles of stones across the road and the
outpost was still in place. Soldiers had removed some
concrete blocks from the wall around the house that
the CPTers had visited on 28 October and used them to block the road.
Janzen and Jack went on a patrol of the Old City
around 4:00 p.m. At the Gutnick Center checkpoint,
border police were detaining four young men and
mistreating one of them; one of the men said soldiers
had already detained him for thirty minutes. The
police detained two more men after the CPT members
stopped to watch. The border police were drinking
water and smoking in front of the Palestinian men, who
were not able to do so because of the Ramadan fast.
After about ten minutes the CPT members left for a few
minutes to patrol the Ibrahimi Mosque checkpoint to
see if their absence would allow the border police to
release the men without losing face. On the CPT
members' return the soldiers were still detaining the
men. When the call to prayer began the CPT members
went to enlist the help of near-by police. The police
immediately made a phone call to their colleagues at
the Gutnick Center who were releasing the Palestinians
as Jack and Janzen returned.
Monday, 31 October
School patrol was uneventful. Soldiers allowed
teachers and pupils to pass the Ibrahimiya checkpoint
without passing through the metal detectors.
Around noon, a Palestinian friend called to say that soldiers were
installing a new watchtower at the Beit Romano checkpoint. Jack took
At 4:00 p.m. Janzen and Jack went up to Worshippers' Way. The road was
clear and the new outpost gone. A Palestinian youth told them that soldiers
had come at 3:00 a.m. and removed the outpost. Some Palestinian men were
blocking the doorway of the building the settler youth had comm