Updates from Tulkarem and Nablus
Updates from Tulkarem and Nablus
1) Stories from Occupied Lands - The Martyrs 2) Stories from Occupied Lands - The Wall 3) Incursions and Land Grabbing Around Nablus 4) The Siege of Tell
1)Stories from Occupied Lands – The Martyrs February, 19 2004 By Dave Tulkarem Practically every house we visit has lost someone. A father, brother, an uncle, sister, son, daughter. We hear the story of one of the local ISM committee members who has lost a brother. Tariq was a member of the Fatah militia (the Palestinian army as it was) who was tracked down and killed by Israeli special forces. The 'surgical strike' occurred in a residential area between two apartment blocks in Tulkarem. It was during Ramadan and Tariq at the time was allegedly unarmed. Armed or not, the Israeli special forces shot indiscriminately ('they shoot even the birds in the sky' was one quote) in the crowded residential area in order to bring him down, wounding 23 others and killing six including two children under the age of 12 and a passing taxi driver.
Stories from Occupied Lands - The Wall February, 22 2004 By Dave Tulkarem
Today I visited the village of Baqa ash Sharqiya, roughly 10km north of Tulkarem. Baqa enjoys the rather dubious distinction of having a "security fence" built on both sides of it. The first fence built deviates from the 'green line' (the 1967 border of Israel pre the invasion of what is now the Occupied Territories) roughly 2.5 - 3 km south of the village and cuts into the Occupied Territories, neatly slicing a roughly 9 sq kilometer diamond shaped part of the West Bank off onto the Israeli side of the fence. Inside this diamond are two Palestinian villages, Baqa and Nazlat Abu Nar...roughly 2500 'terrorists' in Israel-speak which were inexplicably included in Israel. There are no illegal Israeli settlements in the area, in fact not one Israeli citizen lives there. If security is the aim, one can't help but wonder why these people were fenced in such a way?
Incursions and land grabbing around Nablus February, 22 2004 By Zeiad Nablus
After the chaos of a Balata morning, we find ourselves on the road leading from Nablus to Tell village. The road is broken up by dozens of earthmounds, forcing Palestinians traveling to and from Tell - and beyond - to walk for several kilometers. An ISM delegation is heading to the village of 6,000 for a meeting with mayor Abu Faruk in order to obtain more information on a recent IDF military order, dated February 10th, expropriating two dunums of land on a strategic hill overlooking the main settler bi-pass road bisecting the area. The land has been designated for a 'temporary' and unspecified IDF military installation to be constructed there, even though there's already an Israeli military base 1km away near a school on the eastern fringes of the village. Since the Intifada began, Tell - and neighboring villages like Iraq Burin - have been closed in on all sides to vehicular traffic, suffering the customary deprivations of sieges as a result.
The Siege of Tell February 22, 2004 By: Kole and Zeiad Nablus
Since the last report there have been two Israeli military incursions in Balata and three in Tell. An ISM delegation met again yesterday with Mayor Abu Faruk who requested international volunteers in the village. "We have many problems, not just the taking of the two dunums on the Tal hill in the west, but also everyday problems since two years. People cannot get their produce to Nablus and there is no medical assistance in the village, people cannot get any medical help during the nights. There are also the checkpoints which make travel difficult. This is our problem, and it is the same for the people in Iraq Burin and Sar'ra," explains the mayor.