5 February 2011 | International Solidarity Movement
A 14-year old boy was arrested at a checkpoint in Hebron on Friday morning. His family have contacted the Israeli authorities, but have received no answer as to his whereabouts. The following day, his cousin was detained at the same checkpoint, apparently for calling someone German. The Palestinian youth claimed he was just joking around with his friend; he was released an hour-or-so after his family promised to discipline him.
Hebron is unique in that the town has the presence of Jewish settlers within the city itself, with five illegal settlements in the city centre. Since the Goldstein massacre in 1994 – when Baruch Goldstein fired on Palestinians while they prayed in the mosque, killing 29 men and boys, and injuring a further 200 – al-Shuhada street (which is located in the heart of the city) has been closed to Palestinians. This has severed the city in two, paralyzing trade and destroying the commercial centre. More than 500 shops and businesses have been forced to close under military order. The continued repression enforced by the occupation has led to the mass abandonment of more than an additional thousand shops, businesses, and homes in the city centre.