HEBRON UPDATE: February 5-9, 2003

February 25, 2003
HEBRON UPDATE: February 5-9, 2003

Wednesday, February 5th
Curfew, 83rd day

In the morning, CPTers Kristin Anderson, Chris Brown, and Art Gish watched
young Palestinian boys milling around at the southwest corner of Tariq Ibn
Ziad Boys School until Israeli soldiers chased the boys away. In other
places children were able to go to school.

Most of the Palestinian children had entered their schools when CPTer Kathy
Kapenga noticed an Israeli soldier kicking at a locked gate of Ibrahimiya
School (for elementary boys.)
He told the school officials that the school had to close and Kapenga that
he was just following orders.

Four soldiers on foot patrol arrived. CPTer Barbara Martens and a friend
pointed out
that these young children just wanted to attend school as the soldiers
themselves had and suggested the soldiers phone their commander to check the
order. The soldiers checked and found that the school could remain open.

Police in a jeep stopped CPTer William Payne, along with a friend of the
team and three Chileans, asking to see their IDs. The police said that all
should go home due to curfew, but the friend of the team pointed out that
curfew applied only to her. He disagreed but eventually said, "Go do what
you were going to do and then go back indoors."

Later that morning, Gish,Martens, Anderson, and Brown observed Israeli
soldiers arresting two Palestinian men at Al Manara. Three jeeps, an
armored personnel carrier, a tank, and a bulldozer were parked in the area.

Palestinian children milled about, and eventually soldiers fired tear gas.
When Anderson asked, "What does that do?" one soldier replied, "It makes
people go home. They must respect the curfew."

Israeli soldiers detained the Palestinian bus Gish was riding on for two

Anderson witnessed soldiers repeatedly fire tear gas at school girls
attempting to return home. She noticed that it slowed down their progress.

CPTers JoAnne Lingle and Kapenga visited Al Aroub Refugee Camp. They
learned that unemployment stands at 60% there. The sale of goods and
services has decreased 35-100%, with only legumes sales increasing. Some
families fast two days/week because they cannot afford to buy food.

Thursday, February 6th
Curfew 84th day
Curfew lifted for several hours

In the morning, Rhodes and Kapenga watched Israeli soldiers forcing students
to leave the Ibrahimiya School before classes had started. One soldier said
he had already phoned his commander and that schools were to remain closed
because there was curfew. One said he didn't like what he had to do but
was following orders. In any case, he said, he was just one small person.
Kapenga pointed out that students have a right to study. TIPH (Temporary
International Presence in Hebron) arrived and phoned the IDF
(Israeli Defense Force) commander to verify the order. Meanwhile the
faculty and administration herded the students between two buildings across
the street to wait. After an hour, word came that the school was to remain
closed, despite the fact that all other schools in the area remained in
session. Everyone dispersed.

Ibrahimiya School is located near the Avraham Avinu settlement and faces one
of the roads the settlers use.

In the afternoon, Anderson and Rhodes visited a family in the Jabal Johar
neighborhood. A daughter is studying some short courses at home because the
IDF has closed the Palestine Polytechnic University.

Later in the afternoon Rhodes and Martens noticed three TIPH vehicles at the
Duboya Street checkpoint, where Israeli soldiers had detained and handcuffed
two young men.

The IDF lifted curfew for several hours, but shopkeepers were uncertain as
to the exact times and asked CPTers if they knew.

Friday, February 7th
Curfew, 85th day

A school principal asked CPT to accompany two students to school. Israeli
soldiers have prevented their going to school; the boys have not attended
for two months.

Rhodes and Anderson photographed new illegal Israeli settler roads in the
Beqa'a Valley.

Saturday, February 8th Curfew, 86th day
Curfew lifted for several hours.

In the late morning a young Palestinian man told CPT that Israeli soldiers
detaining a youth. He said that soldiers had hit the youth, and when his
mother intervened soldiers had hit her as well.

CPTers Anderson, Brown, and Martens went to investigate. Soldiers told them
he had broken curfew three times. The officer in charge said the youth
would be detained till 11:00 p.m.; two others said 5:00 or 8:00 p.m. The
CPTers gave the youth a
jacket and left. When they returned at 2:45 p.m., he was no longer there.

In the afternoon, CPTers received a phone call from a friend as they were
traveling to Jerusalem. The friend said she had been arrested and was at
the police station. CPTers Anderson, Payne, and Kapenga, along with a
photographer who had employed the woman, waited for four hours outside the
police compound, periodically talking to their friend by phone. (See
February 14 posting, "This Time They Meant to Destroy Me." )

Sunday, February 9th
Curfew, 87th day
Curfew lifted for most of
the day

CPT's friend who was beaten by soldiers on Saturday said she could not sleep
after returning home, as she kept having flashbacks of the incident. She
said she broke down and wept each time she spoke of it. When team members
visited, she seemed better.