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Update / Mas'ha/ Incidents in Jayyous


Update / Mas'ha/ Incidents in Jayyous

1) Correction from August 1st, 2003 update

Radhika Sainath's name was misprinted twice in reference to her op-ed piece.

2) Mas'ha Press Release

In the Path of the Apartheid Wall

Ten meters behind the house of Hani A'amer is the fence of the illegal Elkanah settlement. Tomorrow, the Israeli government wants to continue its Apartheid Wall, their so-called "security fence", another ten meters in front of his house. The family will be trapped in a single-family Bantustan. Anti-occupation activists will face the bulldozer and prevent this innocent family from being imprisoned.

WHERE: The village of Mas'ha, in the occupied Salfit region WHEN: 10 am, August 3, 2003 WHO: Palestinians, Israeli anti-occupation activists, the ISM, the IWPS, Mas'ha peace camp WHAT: We will put up our tents in the path of the Ghetto Wall. We will not move until the government agrees to move the planned construction and free the family of Hani A'amer. We will not allow violence from the Israeli military or hired-security guards to shake us from our demands.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:

Maria 055-376-204 (IWPS spokesperson)

Saef: 055 829 680 (ISM coordinator) Ghassan 054-369-975 (ISM spokesperson) Huwaida 067-473-308 (ISM spokesperson)

ISM media office 022-774-602

The past week, hundreds of Palestinians, along with Israeli peace groups and internationals, have protested in several key spots along the Apartheid Wall, (some now calling it a "Ghetto Wall"). The Israeli military forces, who have been firing steel-core, rubber bullets at non-violent crowds, have wounded dozens.

Despite recent speeches by U.S. Secretary of State, Colin Powell, Security Advisor, Condoleeza Rice, and President George W. Bush warning the Israeli government not to jeopardize a fragile peace, the illegal construction of the wall continues. Now, it reaches Mas'ha, where for months Israelis and Palestinians have been holding a peace camp, learning how to communicate with each other—and yet the Israeli government wants to bulldoze a path into the heart of this peaceful co-existence.

Sharon promised: "We will make serious efforts not to harm Palestinians while constructing the wall..."

Come and see what is really happening.

3) Incidents in Jayyous

INCIDENTS IN JAYYOUS, JULY 29-30: On Tuesday, July 29, three Israeli border police came into the Palestinian West Bank town of Jayyous, and shot holes in fifteen water towers on the roofs of villagers' houses. They entered from the south side of the village, through a gap in the razor wire along the Separation Wall route which is three and half miles from the Green Line. They walked East to the farm of the Shamasny family and walked into the village along a road leading from the farm.

Villagers stayed indoors as the Border Police made their way towards the center of the village, stopping to take aim at water towers and shooting holes in them with thier rifles. The policemen were reported to be laughing whenever they scored a hit. After an hour, they withdrew from the village.

The same day, the Palestinian Red Cross was denied permission to visit a Jayyous Bedouin family that has been isolated from the rest of the village since razor wire was first strung along the Wall route on July 17. Since that day, the family has had no access to food or fresh water. Local activists, with the accompanied by international activists and media, have twice now brought the family food and water.

Also on July 29, two teenage shepards from Jayyous were arrested by Israeli forces while camping on the same side of the wall, near the Bedouin family. They had camped there for the last three months, to graze thier flock. The two were taken to the Israeli town of Jaljoulia, and released that night. They were told it was forbidden for them to be on that side of the wall. A younger companion, who was not arrested, was left to try to drive one hundred sheep back into the village, but was not able to retain two donkeys and three sheep which wandered off. The cost of the animals was said to be nearly 100 USD.

On Wednesday, July 30, a group of activists tried to call to the Bedouin family from the Jayyous side of the fence. Shortly after arriving at the site, Israeli forces patrolling the wall drove up and threatened to shoot and kill the activists if they didn't leave after ten minutes. The activists left immediately.

Also on July 30, shortly before sundown, Israeli border police drove into the village from the west. They parked in front of a house in the center of town, one block west of the mosque, and two dismounted from their jeep. Residents and internationals took cover as the policemen fired about ten shots into the water tanks on the roofs of the homes of the Khalid and Kareem families, leaving gaping holes in the tanks. M-16 bullet casings were picked up afterwards from the street outside both houses. It was also reported that the police hit three boys with wooden sticks in the west of the village before the shooting attack.

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