Thursday, October 16 2008 Olive Harvest in Susya and a Military Takeover a Private House in Hebron

Over 100 activists – Palestinian, Israeli & international – arrived at dawn to Susya region. Police claimed that the area has been announced “restricted military zone”. After arguing that dozens of Israeli vehicles pass undisturbed, and especially due to the media’s attention to the unequal enforcement of the warrant – the harvest was allowed. In light of agreements with the police, some areas were harvested by Palestinians only, while some in cooperation with Israeli & international activists. At the end of the day nearly all the olives at Susya region were picked – including many regions that are routinely not accessible to the Palestinian landowners due to settlers’ violence and\or Israeli security forces.

At the end of day, we received a desperate call from residents in the rural area surrounding Hebron. For three days the family members were imprisoned in a single room in their own house, as the Israeli army took control over it. During the first two days of the imprisonment a one-year old baby had also been held inside. Only after numerous pleas the grandmother (free outside) was permitted to take the baby. The soldiers presented no valid warrant ordering the seizure nor told the family members how long they were about to be caged in their own house. Four activists stopped by on return from Susya. In vain they questioned the soldiers asking to see a valid seizure warrant. Passing the information to journalists and human rights NGO’s, that in turn addressed higher military officers, fruited in the release of the pregnant woman toward evening, and the soldiers’ evacuation at 9PM.

Military Takeover a Private House in Hebron