Hebron, South Hebron Hills, Tue 12.3.13, Morning
Translator: Charles K.
We left Beersheba at 08:30.
Highway 60: Dense traffic. Many trucks with building material, some with Palestinian license plates.
Hebron: Deserted; all checkpoints are quiet. We left the car at the giant parking lot near Beit Hamachpela and went to the Farcha school for girls which is right next to the building. The principal welcomed us warmly; she said that at the moment there are no particular problems, the army doesn’t bother them – in fact, the opposite is true: if there are problems with settlers the army arrives to help. The settlers’ children spit at them; they must remove their jewelry at the checkpoint, including wedding rings, to go through the magnemometer. But otherwise the crossing goes smoothly even though sometimes bags are checked, including the children’s, in a very intrusive manner. The surrounding buildings facing the schoolyard are protected by netting against any eventuality. The school is well cared for and clean. Everything’s great!
Back to Beersheba via Highway 317 and the village of Al Tawwani.
The usual problems: harassment by settlers, delays in the military escort for the children. There’s an activity on Saturday – erecting a tent to protect the children from the weather while they wait for the military escort. We asked whether that won’t lead to trouble from settlers – Nasser shrugged. They planned to organize transport for the children, but “the settlers objected.” He thinks all the organizations working in Tawwani should coordinate among themselves to improve conditions. But there’s a ray of light: a sewer line is being installed thanks to donations from abroad.
Everything’s quiet and normal, but Mahmoud el Titi from Al Fawwar was killed in the evening from live fire during a demonstration. The army announced that the soldiers felt their lives were in danger from Molotov cocktails. Four other youths, aged 16-20, were injured during the same incident.