AL-KHALIL/HEBRON: Soldiers enter Ibrahimi school grounds; invade civilian homes as part of training exercises

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CPTnet
19 December 2011
AL-KHALIL/HEBRON: Soldiers enter Ibrahimi school grounds; invade civilian
homes as part of training exercises

On
15 December 2011, CPT’s AL-Khalil/Hebron team received a phone call from the
principal of Ibrahimi School around 8:30 in the morning, saying that Israeli
soldiers had entered the school grounds. By the time CPTers arrived, the
soldiers had left. Members of the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in
Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), International Solidarity Movement (ISM),
Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) and the Hebron Rehabilitation
Committee (HRC) also arrived around the same time.

Translating
for the principal, the HRC representative said that the boys had been at a
school assembly celebrating the end of semester before exams when the soldiers
arrived, accusing the boys of throwing a handful of plastic chips painted in a
metallic color from the schoolyard.

As
the people gathered took pictures of the chips, the principal received word
that an officer in the paratroopers brigade currently occupying the H-2 area of
Hebron wished to speak to him. The officer told the principal that rather than
throwing the plastic chips from the schoolyard, the boys had thrown a small
piece of glass from a beer bottle at the soldiers near the Qitoun checkpoint.

The
officer told the principal to report to the Israeli District CoordinatinDec. 14-15 001g
Office (DCO) later that morning but the Hebron District Ministry of Education
told the Israeli military it was inappropriate for the DCO to make that demand
without first consulting the Ministry, so the principal did not attend the
meeting. Pictures of the objects the military accused the boys of throwing and
the officers talking to the principal are available here. The commanding officer threatened to close the school if the boys
continued throwing things at the soldiers.

Later
that day, the team learned from other internationals that members of the
paratroopers brigade invaded the apartment building next door to where
internationals live, telling them that they needed to do so for “practice.”
CPTers observed them conducting a similar invasion of a building in the Old
City in the late afternoon. The soldiers were laughing and joking as they pounded
on the doors of people’s homes, demanding access. (The soldiers left shortly
after TIPH officers arrived.)

Article
12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “[n]o one
shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or
correspondence.” Article 17(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights, to which Israel is a party, also protects individuals against
“arbitrary or unlawful interference with [their] privacy, family and
home.” The International Red Cross/Red Crescent Commentary on Article 27
of the Fourth Geneva Convention stipulates that “[t]he family dwelling and
home are protected; they cannot be the object of arbitrary interference.”

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