Archive - Jul 2008

ROBERTSVILLE, ON: Algonquins, with supporters, continue to protect their lands


Early on the morning of 21 July, five CPTers joined a group of Ardoch Algonquin First Nation (AAFN) members and local non-indigenous people (who refer to themselves as settlers) at the Robertsville site where they have been resisting efforts by Frontenac Ventures Corporation to explore for uranium since last year. The gathering was brief, lasting only about forty-five minutes, but the message was clear: NO MINING ON FIRST NATIONS TERRITORIES WITHOUT CONSENT.

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers attack children for the fourth time in one week

On Wednesday 30 July, settlers attacked fourteen Palestinian children between the ages six to twelve on their way from summer camp to their homes in the villages of Tuba and Maghayer Al-abeed. Five settlers hid themselves along the route of the children and waited for them. When the children approached, the settlers began yelling, swearing, and throwing rocks at them. One settler jumped over the settlement fence and chased the children on a path leading to the village of Tuba. The Israeli soldiers assigned to protect the children (in a Jeep marked 611019) abandoned the children approximately 500 meters earlier, thereby failing to complete the escort of the children as ordered by the Israeli Knesset.

July 30th

URGENT ACTION: Demand international investigation into Kurdish journalist's death.

Supporters of Soran Hama, democracy and human rights in Iraqi Kurdistan are circulating a letter and asking that international support and pressure be brought to bear upon Kurdish authorities whom they hold responsible for this murder. They are calling for a quick international investigation of this killing in order to find out who is directly responsible and to counter the threat that this assassination poses to free expression and democracy in Iraq and Kurdistan.

IRAQ: Journalist's assassination exposes lack of democracy

On 22 July 2008, the twenty-three-year old journalist Soran Hama was assassinated in front of his home in a relatively safe, Kurdish-controlled neighborhood in Kirkuk. He had received death threats after publishing an article in the independent magazine, Lvin, exposing corruption among Kurdish officials involved in local prostitution.


Pray for the six members of CPT’s first delegation to the Kurdish north of Iraq who will be traveling to Suleimaniya this weekend. Pray they will be effective witnesses to the challenges facing the Kurds and displaced people in the region.

July 29th


1 June 2008
An armed paramilitary group, presumably the Black Eagles, entered southeast and northeast Barrancabermeja. Members threatened to kill young people they encountered talking in the street, accusing the youth of laziness and using drugs.

3 June
At the request of the survivor of an attempted assassination, the team did follow-up work regarding the attack, which team members witnessed in 2006. At the time of the shooting, many people said the paramilitary wanted to kill the survivor, a teacher, because he had refused to join a network of paramilitary informants. The case has not advanced because the the teacher had not wanted to file a complaint against the assailants.

July 28th

COLOMBIA PRAYER REQUEST: Challenging violence in Barrancabermeja

The weekend before last, six people died in an ongoing string of murders in Barrancabermeja. A newspaper headline called it the most violent weekend of the year. In response, a coalition of social organizations in Barrancabermeja, including women's groups, the diocese, labor organizations, community leaders, CPT, Peace Brigades, and others; organized vigils at the site of the murders. Relatives of those who were killed, as well as friends and neighbors, joined us to commemorate those whose lives violence ended abruptly. "You are not alone," our vigils proclaimed. "We join in your grief."

July 27th

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers attack Palestinian children, CPTers, on journey home from summer camp

At 1:50 pm, on Sunday, 27 July, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian children between the ages of six and fifteen and Christian Peacemaker Team (CPT) members Joel Gulledge and Jan Benvie, who were accompanying them as they walked to their village of Tuba. The children had been attending summer camp in At-Tuwani.

As the fourteen children and two CPTers were walking in a valley south of the Havat Ma'on settlement outpost, one masked settler came down the hill, hurling stones with a slingshot. The children and Benvie ran ahead, but saw other stone-throwing settlers approaching them from the opposite side of the valley. None of the stones struck the children, however, and they were able to run to safety.  

When the masked settler saw Gulledge filming the attack, he began directing his stones at Gulledge. The settler hit him in the leg with a rock, inflicting an injury that made it impossible for Gulledge to run away. The settler then wrested the camera from him, and began beating him with a rock and the camera. After that, the settler ran off with the camera. Gulledge was treated for his injuries at a hospital in Hebron and then returned to At-Tuwani.

July 26th

AT-TUWANI: Armed settlers enter village, threaten Palestinians and internationals; Israeli police refuse to intervene

On Friday 25 July at 10:30 a.m., three Israeli settlers, one masked and accompanied by a dog, left the Havat Ma'on settlement outpost and followed a Palestinian shepherd and his young son into the village of At-Tuwani. Over to the next hour, the settlers remained in the village shouting insults at the residents of the village and threatening to shoot them.

July 25th

AT-TUWANI: Israeli settlers chase Palestinian children on their way to summer camp; Israeli military fails to protect children

On Wednesday 23 July, three Israeli settlers, one masked and wielding a stick, pursued fourteen Palestinian children who were on their way to a summer camp in At-Tuwani.  The children from the villages of Tuba and Maghaer Al-Abeed waited thirty minutes for the Israeli military escort that should have accompanied them on the most direct road between the villages of Tuba and At-Tuwani.  When the military failed to arrive, the children began walking along a long path through the hills to At-Tuwani.  When the children neared the Israeli settlement outpost of Havat Ma'on, three settlers with two dogs came out from the outpost and began walking in the direction of the children.