Do Unto Others focuses on the Middle East, (nonviolent) social movements, and how I make sense of my place in the world. I'm currently based in Cairo, Egypt doing peacebuilding and community development.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Masked Israeli thugs attack a house full of women and children

Another outrageous and despicable incident perpetrated by settlers in the South Hebron Hills (in this case, specifically, settlers from Havot Ma'on a.k.a. Ma'on Farm). This account from Operation Dove:
At-Tuwani – On the morning of Saturday, 12th June 2010, shortly before 11.00, about thirty Israeli settlers from Havat Ma’on oupost, masked and armed with slings and sticks, invaded At-Tuwani village, attacking the most exposed house of the village and throwing stones against Palestinian villagers.

The settlers approached the house and soon damaged the low stone fence and broke the glass of a window using an iron stick. At the time of the attack, only women and children were at home because all the men of the family were going to the near city of Yatta for a relative’s funeral. The women with the children soon left the house, running away scared. While running, one of the women, age 19, pregnant and with a baby in her arms, fell to the ground. Later in the morning, she has been transferred by a Palestinian Red Cross ambulance to the near hospital of Yatta.

When Operation Dove volunteers reached the place, together with many Palestinian residents of the village, the settlers were moving away from the house, without stopping throwing stones with slings. Some Palestinians have been hit and afterwards treated by paramedical staff.

Israeli army, police and border police came about half an hour after the aggression began, when the settlers had already retired among the trees of Havat Ma’on. Shortly after the security forces had arrived, some settlers with uncovered face came out from the wood, provoking a lot of tension among the Palestinians. Some activists, belonging to the Israeli peace association Ta’ayush, who had arrived shortly before, interposed betweeen the Palestinians and the soldiers; one of them have been arrested.

In the meantime, some army vehicles blocked the main entrance to the village, in order to control the area. After the accident, the police collected testimonies from all the witnesses and took pictures to document the damage caused to the Palestinian property by the settlers aggression. Two Palestinian men who live in the house attacked by settlers went to Kiryat Arba police station to file a complaint. Two Operation Dove volunteers did the same in order to release their testimony about the events and deliver evidences (photos and videos).

Operation Dove have maintained an international presence in At-Tuwani and South Hebron Hills since 2004.

Pictures of the incidents:

Note: According to the Fourth Geneva Convention, the Hague Regulations, the International Court of Justice, and several United Nations resolutions, all Israeli settlements and outposts in the Occupied Palestinian Territories are illegal. Most settlement outposts, including Havat Ma'on (Hill 833), are considered illegal also under Israeli law.]
Yeah a group of masked men attacked a home full of women and children. And one of the Israeli activists, who came to stand between the attacked Palestinians and the hateful settlers, was arrested. Wait what!? The people who broke the windows and terrorized the residents with iron bars and large stones weren't arrested. But the activists who came to intervene were arrested?! This is the wild, wild west, people.

Here is a follow-up of the incident from Rabbis for Human Rights:
Last Saturday settlers from Havat Maon damaged a home of a Twane resident in South Hebron Hills. Volunteers who came demanded from the regiment commander to detain the rioters, but in response to this demand the commander tried to remove the volunteers and even cocked his weapon at one of the volunteers. The RHR lawyer who was on the phone during this incident asked for the reaction of the Humanitarian Center of the Civil Administration and the reply that was received was that the regional commander cocked his weapon in order to deter the volunteers. The lawyer asked if the use of a weapon against unarmed people as a way of deterring trouble was reasonable. The police were requested to investigate the regional commander. A complaint regarding this incident will be passed to the Criminal Investigation Division.
Below are a couple pictures of kids, along with the matriarch of the family, who live in the house that was attacked. This woman and these 2 girls were probably home from school when 30 masked men surrounded their home with bats and stones.

1 comment:

Steve said...

this makes me so mad. tell the family i am sharing this story with lots of people here. we have to make this different.