York Activist Reports from Bethlehem:
Group Plans to Act as "Human Shields" Tonight
30 Mar. 2002, Bethlehem
Amanda Ream, 212-541-4226 x241, Direct Action for a Free Palestine
Bethlehem, Palestine Friday, 29 March 02 Report from Bethlehem
by New York Human Rights Observers: International Group Plans
to Act as "Human Shields" Tonight
New Yorkers are in the West Bank as part of a coalition of
international groups. They are sending reports as violence
takes over in Bethlehem and the surrounding region.
are surrounding Bethlehem where the International Solidarity
Movement of 100 is currently stationed. There is no way in
or out. The area and all checkpoints are completely closed.
A suicide bomber detonated inside a West Jerusalem supermarket
at noon today. The ensuing Israeli attack depended on where
the suicide bomber was from. She is from Dehesha refugee camp
in Bethlehem. Her video-taped statement was released on Fatah
TV around 2pm. Israeli tanks are rolling into Beit Jala, a
town connected to Bethlehem."
Italians are inside Dehesha refugee camp as observers and
human shields. They have been staying at Ibdaa Cultural Center
nearby for the past week. The sound of F-16s is in the air,
as is an unseasonable hail and wind storm, which is making
conditions even more chaotic. The ISM will spend the night
as human shields at Beit Jala, or in Ad Doha guarding would-be
bulldozed homes, or as shields and observers inside Dehesha.
Ramallah is under siege. Two buildings inside Arafat's compound
have been taken over. There are bodies strewn about the compound.
There are 60 internationals inside Ramallah. All power has
been cut off, but their hotel runs on a generator so they
may be able to get information out. Some internationals are
riding inside of ambulances, which are being fired upon."
are 10 dead (eight Palestinians and two international journalists)
at Al Aqsa in Jerusalem, the scene of now-Prime Minister Sharon's
arrogant visit to the Muslim holy site which marked the beginning
of the second Intifada."
from Kristen Schurr Bethlehem, Palestine cell: 011 972 56