AL-KHALIL (HEBRON): CPT Palestine February 2017 Newsletter--Remembering at Martyrs' Cemetery, Checkpoint 56 and more...

CPT Palestine Newsletter - February 2017
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Remembering at Martyrs' Cemetery

On a warm, sunny, Sunday noontime, 26 February 2017, at The Martyrs’ Cemetery on a hillside in Hebron, groups of Palestinian community leaders, political officials, the press, school children, members of the community and international observers gathered to remember the 29 lives that an American-Israeli settler, and doctor, took Friday, noon, 25 February 1994.

The men whose lives the Israeli took were praying in the Ibrahimi Mosque, the site of the cave tomb of the Patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and their wives, Sarah, Rebecca and Leah. They were not “martyrs” to their Muslim faith, to a cause for Palestinian independence or in resistance against the illegal, immoral Israeli occupation of the West Bank. It was Friday noon. The 29 came, as usual, to pray. They did not think to “give” their lives. The Israeli settler, with his automatic rifle, took their lives. He didn’t ask. They didn’t agree or resist. He just took their lives.

Just as those 29 men could not imagine the enormity of what has about to happen to them, we could not grasp the reality of what did happen. (Read More)

 

Susiya, Palestine

Escalating tensions fill the village of Susiya in the South Hebron Hills as it faces threats of imminent demolition and a forced removal of all those living here.   Since 1986, the current location of susiya has been demolished several times. With each demolition, the residents rebuild on the land for which they have clear titles dating back to the Ottoman period. 

The fate of the village has been tied up in the Israeli High Court of Justice for years  as the Palestinians seek to peacefully inhabit their village. In July 2016, the State of Israel withdrew from ongoing negotiations with the village about its future,  taking the position that demolition is the only outcome. Since then, the High Court has ordered the State (of Israel) to present to the Court  its ultimate demolition  plan for Susiya.  The most recent deadline for the Court's decision was March 1 meaning that demolition could commence the same day. (Read More)

 


 

Checkpoint 56

To walk through Checkpoint 56 is no straightforward process for a Palestinian. Even the term “walking through” seems limp and devoid of truth:

There’s standing 

and waiting,

some leaning

and retracing of steps. 

There’s standing 

and waiting,

some leaning

and retracing of steps.

There’s standing 

and waiting,

some leaning

and retracing of steps.

And….

The journey through begins at a turnstile, one you will most likely have been waiting at for a while that you’ll only pass through when the Border Police care to look up from their conversation or cigarette. If you’re with friends or family, expect to make the next journey by yourself as they wait their turn. Your entrance is now locked and you’re at the mercy of some young recruit. You’ll walk down a restricted path roughly a meter wide, before arriving at a container. Inside this container, you’ll find to one side, behind a bullet proof window, those who are now completely in control of your actions, watching your every move as you make your way through the metal detector ahead. Be sure to take everything out of your pockets and prepare to be asked to lift your shirt to show those watchful eyes you only have skin underneath. This becomes a back and forth until the Border Police are satisfied you’re no threat. Now you’ll have to show your ID, which must correspond to a number on one of the many pieces of paper in front of them. If you don’t have a number, prepare to be turned around, if you do, you’ll have to be patient as they search and just hope they have all the pages this time. Once your numerical identity is confirmed you’ll be able to exit the container, walking again down a restricted path before exiting through another turnstile. (Read More)


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