Photo courtesy of Operation Dove
(At-Tuwani, Southern Hebron Hills, Palestinian Occupied Territories) IDF soldiers, without respecting Israeli or international laws, assault a Palestinian shepherd. The soldiers claimed he was allowing his sheep to graze on land under military closure.
by Operation Dove volunteers
A group of shepherds from the village of At-Tuwani, in the Southern Hebron Hills of Occupied Palestine was grazing their herds on village land in the valley near Kharruba, in front of the illegal Havat Ma’on settler outpost on August 1.
At around 10 a.m., the settlement’s security guards came and immediately called the Israeli Army. The patrol arrived and immediately ordered the
shepherds to leave the area.
One shepherd offered the officer in charge a map that he had received from District Civil Liaison Office, showing that the area in question was not a “closed military zone.” The officer quickly grabbed the map, commented that ”this is cow’s shit,” tore it up and threw away.
Five soldiers assaulted then assaulted the shepherd, beating him. Volunteers with Operation Dove and Christian Peacemaker Teams who had witnessed the incident called Israeli Police, who arrived an hour later.
When policemen arrived, the IDF officer accused the shepherd of having assaulted soldiers. The shepherd was arrested and taken to the Kiriat Arba settlement station to file a complaint, where he was held until Israeli friends posted bail. An Operation Dove volunteer’s testimony was not allowed, and in fact, that activist was told by police to “go back to Italy.”
After being released, the shepherd went to a hospital in Hebron due to liver pain from the beating from the soldiers.