Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Tale of 7 Houses (Part Two)

DCO officer posts stop-work order on new Palestinian house

On the 20th of July, DCO delivered stop work orders for nine Palestinian structures around the village of At-Tuwani. These orders were delivered to seven new houses (the ones I was talking about in the previous entry), one cave, and one cistern. But it wasn't easy for the DCO to deliver the order. They were met with nonviolent resistance:

Palestinian children surrounded each house and chanted loudly, attempting to make it difficult for the DCO to leave the orders at each house and making it difficult for the DCO and soldiers to use their radio and phones. Palestinians sat in protest in front of the military and DCO and prayed together on their land.

They argued their case with the DCO. One made an especially important point - the DCO and soldiers should be delivering demolition orders to the illegal buildings in the Israeli outpost of Havot Ma’on, which is expanding every day.

Over the course of the day, the Israeli soldiers committed several abuses (in addition to delivering the stop-work orders, of course):

- Soldiers hit child.

- Soldiers shoved a Palestinian man to the ground.

- Soldiers arrested a Palestinian man for "threatening a soldier." What was he actually doing? Laughing at him. He is still being held.

Landowner being arrested

Despite Israeli settler and soldier harassment to discourage the growth of the village of At-Tuwani, Palestinians remain committed to asserting their right to develop their land. I'll do my best to keep you updated on what's going on here. In the meantime, check out this video for another look at this protest. You can also see our press release here.


Anonymous said...

The Israeli's say they want the Palestinians to recognize Israel - but they have yet to recognize Palestine. It is very sad when people are not allowed to build on their own land, but others from outside their area(Israeli's) are.

Claire said...

What brave people; the children are amazing! I What is the expressed motive behind the soldiers action toward the Palestinians? What law are they supposedly breaking?

joy_in_palestine said...

Hi Claire,

All building in Palestine requires a permit and these buildings don't have one. The thing is, the Israeli government doesn't give permits in area C (rural areas) at all. So they're between a rock and a hard place.

Those kids are my heroes, honestly.