Internationals Report Israeli Army Brutality
Direct Action for A Free Palestine
April 11, 2002
Reports of Israeli Army Brutality from International Human Rights Activists Now in Jenin, West Bank
Thirteen internationals: 1 Swede, 1 Italian, 3 British and 8 American traveled from Bethlehem and Jerusalem to Jenin, where there are reports of 300 dead and countless injured. They filed this report.
· 548 Palestinian men now living in Romani have been dumped by Israeli soldiers at nearby Salem checkpoint after having been arrested or escaping from Jenin. 160 were dumped naked outside of Syba. We heard several stories of horror from the men.
· A Palestinian UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency) employee was detained at a checkpoint for three days without food, and only Israeli soldiers’ urine to drink. The right side of his face paralyzed due to severe beating. The Israeli interrogators, described as torturers, told the imprisoned man that all UNRWA employees are spies for Hezbollah. When asking the Israeli doctors to loosen his severely tight plastic handcuffs, the doctor only tightened them further. His home in Jenin caught fire, which was saved by firefighters, only to be bombed by an Apache helicopter. He does not know what has become of his family.
· A young Palestinian man was forced from his home in Jenin, and used as a human shield by Israeli soldiers. His back and neck are burned by cigarettes.
· A Red Crescent ambulance driver was arrested for feeding 200 women and children for 3 days. When the food ran out, the 200 left the medical center, heading for the Eastern side of Jenin. All were stopped, while some women and all of the men were forced to strip naked.
· At the school in Kyba, which is serving as a refugee camp for the arrested and escaped from Jenin refugee camp, there is a list on the wall of those detainees released from Salem checkpoint. In nearby Romani, the mosque loud speaker which otherwise projects a call to prayer, called out names of the missing and the disappeared from Jenin.
· In Jenin there is no electricity so recharging cell phones is impossible as is getting television news. Communication gathering in and out of the camp and surrounding area are next to impossible.
· The 13 internationals intend to deliver humanitarian aide, assist ambulance drivers and document human rights abuses in the town and the camp.