HEBRON/AT-TUWANI URGENT ACTION: Stop Extremist Violence

CPTnet
20 February 2005
HEBRON/AT-TUWANI URGENT ACTION: Stop Extremist Violence

- Help Protect CPT Peacemakers from Extremist Israeli Settler Violence
- Urge Israeli and your Authorities to Halt Settler Attacks

BACKGROUND
On 16 February 2005, a pair of Israeli settlers attacked international peace
team workers from Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) and the Italian-based
Operation Dove (OD), breaking the jaw of one Italian and sending him to the
hospital with a concussion and memory loss. The attack occurred near the
Palestinian village of At-Tuwani and the Israeli settler outpost of Havat
Ma'on, a location of repeated settler harassment. CPT and OD have turned
over videotape of the settlers to the Israeli police and the US Consulate in
Jerusalem. Find more details about the attack below.

Since Ma'on settlement was established in 1982, settlers have confiscated
more than 350 acres of At-Tuwani land. For years settlers and Israeli
soldiers have harassed the At-Tuwani Palestinian community with relative
impunity. In an effort to reduce this violence and harassment, CPT and OD
have maintained a presence in the At-Tuwani region in the southern West Bank
for over 6 months, accompanying Palestinian school children and farmers who
experience repeated attacks from Israeli settlers.

PATTERN OF SETTLER VIOLENCE
The 16 February attack is the latest in a pattern of attacks by extremist
settlers on international peace-builders and local Palestinians. In
September 2004 a group of masked settlers attacked and beat CPTers Kim
Lamberty and Chris Brown with chains, breaking Lamberty's arm and puncturing
Brown's lung. In October 2004 masked settlers attacked a group of five
internationals including CPTers Diana Zimmerman and Dianne Janzen and
severely beat an OD member, nearly rupturing his kidney and injuring his
wrist. In December 2004 and January 2005 settlers attacked Palestinian
shepherds numerous times, and repeatedly threatened violence against
school-children.

At a time when a flagging peace process is inching forward, many are worried
that Palestinian extremist actions threaten to derail the process. There is
little said in the press about Israeli extremists and military actions that
also jeopardize peace.

ACTION:
Please notify CPT at peacemakers@cpt.org as to what action you have taken,
who you talked to and what they agreed to do, so that we can follow up and
let you know the impact of your action.

ACTION I: CALL, FAX and EMAIL ISRAELI AUTHORITIES
As soon as possible, ask Israeli authorities to expediently and thoroughly
investigate the February 16 attack on unarmed international peacemakers near
the village of At-Tuwani, Hebron District, and to hold these armed Israeli
civilians accountable for their violence.
-Israeli Minister of Justice, Tzipi Livni, from North America dial: Tel:
011-972-2-675-3225 Fax: 011-972-2-675-3709 E-mail zlivni@knesset.gov.il
-Israeli Ministry of the Interior, Avraham Poraz, from North America dial:
Tel: 011- 972-2-6701411 Fax: 011-972-2-6701628 e-mail: sar@mops.gov.il

ACTION II: TALK WITH YOUR OWN GOVERNMENTAL REPRESENTATIVES
- Give them the details of the attacks.
- Tell them the presence of international peace-builders like CPT and OD is
an important element in reducing violence as the peace process inches
forward.
- Agree that it is in the interest of peace to deter extremist violence on
all sides -- including settlers -- cannot be allowed to continue.
- Remind decision-makers that it was an extremist settler that assassinated
Prime Minister Rabin. The February 16 attack is an opportunity to place
scrutiny on extremist settlers.
- Most importantly: Urge decision-makers to apply pressure so that an
expedient and thorough investigation into the February 16 attack is
conducted. Ask them what they can do to help.

TOGETHER WE CAN CURB EXTREMIST SETTLER ATTACKS. THANK YOU!
-------------------------------

AT-TUWANI: SETTLERS ATTACK AND INJURE INTERNATIONALS

At 11:00 a.m. 16 February 2005 while CPT member Dianna Zimmerman and an
Operation Dove (OD) team member were accompanying shepherds on their own
land near the Havat Ma'on Israeli Settler Outpost above At-Tuwani at the
southernmost tip of the West Bank. Two settlers accosted them. One settler
discharged his gun into the air, and later stood with his gun aimed at
Zimmerman while she engaged the other in dialogue. When the army drove by
the settlers briefly left.

A short time later CPT member Sally Hunsburger, a U.S. national, and two
Italian OD members appeared over the crest of the hill from the direction of
the village of Tuba. Settlers reappeared, noticed the video camera a team
member was carrying, and attacked. One OD member was treated for a head
injury including blurred vision and memory loss, and a broken jaw and teeth
from a karate kick. He has short-term memory loss and blurred vision. A
second OD member was also punched and kicked. His injuries were less severe.
Hunsberger was threatened during the attack, but was not injured. Israeli
police, who are responsible for issues related to settlers in the West Bank,
were contacted immediately. Instead of coming to the scene of the crime,
they required the internationals who had suffered the attack to come to
their station at the gate of the Ma'on settlement to file a report.

For Agence France Presse report: SETTLERS BREAK JAW OF ITALIAN PEACE
ACTIVIST IN SOUTHERN WEST BANK, 17 February 2005 see:
http://archives.gophercentral.com/index.php?op=news&id=9113

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