By: Vera Reider
While the media focused on the London summit, in our area the same horrible routine rules supreme. On Friday night a week ago 4 Israelis died in a terror attack, a fifth person – a young woman – died of wounds later. For many Israelis it was a surprise, as if the occupation ended with the election of Abu Mazen and the renewal of the negotiations with the PA. However the life in the “Territories” continues to be hard, dangerous, hopeless, and full of humiliation. In violation of the cease-fire, the Israeli army continues to arrest, search, impose curfews, enforce closures on towns and villages, and terrorize the Palestinian civilian population. So it is way too early to celebrate peace. The media should be reminding Israelis of this fact more often.
It is time to plough the fields, and, as usual, Palestinian farmers encounter difficulties obtaining permits required to work their own fields. In the Israeli Supreme Court, a hearing continues which was initiated by Rabbis for Human Rights and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel. The State of Israel was requested to explain why it does not safeguard free access of Palestinian farmers to their land.
Saturday Feb. 26 in the evening – a 14 year old girl was wounded in Hebron. She was then arrested, despite her bleeding wounds.
Sunday Feb. 27 The army raided Tulkarm. The soldiers invaded homes, spreading panic among women and children. They arrested six men.
- A 16 year old boy from Qalqilya died of wounds sustained on Jan. 26 during an army invasion.
Monday Feb. 28.
- A Bethlehem man was released from detention and expelled to Gaza.
- At the Jbarra checkpoint a man was arrested and taken to an unknown location.
- The army invaded the villages Masha and Az-Zawiya and imposed a curfew, while shooting in the air and in the direction of houses.
- Beit Sourik village: a non-violent demonstration against the Separation Wall, with the participation of women, children, and Israeli activists, was dispersed by the army using tear gas and rubber-coated bullets. Ten people were wounded. The head of the local council Mohamed Kandil was arrested.
- The official report of the Palestinian Authority was published, according to which since September 2000 the Israeli army and the settlers killed 4007 Palestinians. Of those 260 were women, 741 - children and youths aged less than 18 years, 344 – policemen and security personnel, 817 students and faculty. Approximately 52000 Palestinians were wounded; resulting in many cases in irreversible handicaps.
Tuesday March 1
- Two Israeli soldiers were wounded in the area of settlement Menora.
- 13 Palestinian laborers without work permits were arrested in the south of Israel.
- Soldiers in jeeps invaded the villages Tubas and Tammun in north West Bank, shooting in the air and at buildings. Nobody was hurt, no arrests.
- In the village Tulut, in the Qalqilya area, fields and an olive grove were bulldozered. A 70 year old farmer who tried to protect his land was hurt by the bulldozer. The apparent reason – expansion of a nearby settlement.
- In Yatta in South Hebron Hills, homes were invaded by the army. Tens of people were arrested, and their vehicles confiscated. The people were released after several hours of interrogation.
- A Yatta inhabitant was detained, beaten and wounded in Hebron.
- Settlers and soldiers bulldozered Palestinian fields in the Hebron area in order to construct a settler road. The road construction also poses a threat to a number of Palestinian houses.
- In Azun village in the Qalqilya area four people were arrested.
- The inhabitants of Wadi Fukin south west of Jerusalem found land confiscation orders in their fields.
Wednesday March 2
A curfew was imposed in East Jerusalem suburbs Al-Azariyeh and Abu Dis. Dozens of Al-Quds University students, whose main campus is located in Abu Dis, were detained, interrogated and released after several hours.
- Ten people were arrested in the Silet A-Taher village in the Jenin area.
- A decision was announced to confiscate 10677 dunams of land in the Hebron area, for Separation Fence construction.
- Several people were hurt during an anti-wall protest demonstration in Beit Sourik.
- Two 18 year old men were arrested in Tulkarm.
Thursday March 3
- Three people were arrested in the Silet A-Taher village, among them a 16- and a 17-year old.
- During the night the army invaded the Balata camp near Nablus. The soldiers raided homes and established a position on one of the rooftops, from which they shot at surrounding buildings. Exchanges of fire took place with the local resistance.
- Two men were arrested in Jenin, one of them a member of the Palestinian Police force.
- Seven people were detained in Jenin, interrogated in the military prison in Salem, and then released.
- In Beit Sourik, destruction of the olive groves continued on the route of the Separation Fence. Four 14-year old boys were arrested.
- A man was arrested in Ayn-al-Bayda; family property was damaged when the house was raided.
- A child was wounded in the ear in Rafah. His state was described as moderate.
Friday March 4
- At the checkpoint at the entrance to Al-Khader, south of Bethlehem, dozens of people were detained and searched. The town was divided in two and people were forbidden to cross from one side to the other.
- Several roads were blocked by flying checkpoints in the Tubas area in north West Bank. People were requested to leave their cars and were searched.
- Three children were wounded in Rafah. It was reported that they played with an object left by the army which then exploded.
- In the Al Nazariya villige in central west bank the army blocked the central street and the inhabitants were interrogated. Dozens of young men were detained for several hours.
- Three settlers were lightly wounded by stones thrown at them by Palestinian youths in the Modiin Ilit area.
- A demonstration against the Separation Fence was dispersed forcefully in Deir Balut, Salfit area. Several demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation.
- In violation of the cease-fire, and despite of arrests of Islamic Jihad members by the Palestinian Authority, a military operation was conducted in Tulkarm.
Saturday March 5
In Yatta soldiers occupied the school and did not let the students in for three hours.
Sources of information: WAFA, IMEMC, Palestine Monitor, Windows-Channels for Communication, Rabbis for Human Rights, Walla, Haaretez