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Settler Violence Against Human Rights Observers and Palestinians in Hebron

Tel Rumeida, Incident Report by Sarah

After the main group of settlers had passed us on the hill, Moran and I followed the rest of them up to the intersection at the top of the hill where many of them were milling around.

We wondered where Eva and Sarah were. We later found out that they had been forced into the shop by the crowd of settlers chanting “death to the arabs” and by the soldiers. The store keepers had bolted the door and showed them the back way out and they had made their way to the stairs of the apartment.

Moran and I observed about 10 small settler boys (of varying ages between 6 and 12) throwing stones up toward our apartment and yelling (although we could not understand what). We thought they knew it was the internationals’ apartment and were just generally showing hostility, but we realised later they had seen Eva and Sarah and that is who they were yelling at.

An apparently senior member of the settler group with a long beard and prayer shawl aged about 50 was shooing the boys away, and three police officers were also scattering the boys.

After less than 5 minutes one of the police approached us and spoke Hebrew to Moran: they told us to get out of here for our safety.

We returned a short way back past the soldier station down the hill and watched until the group dispersed in both directions (towards the tombs and Tel Remeida settlement).

Generally it was a very intimidating day with settlers harranguing us and the boys spitting on us (I got big green ones on 3 different occasions during the day). I also witnessed Galit intervene to stop a settler girl (around 15 years old) from touching a Palestinian child, and the girl slapped her. She was walking with a family group consisting of parents, baby carriage, a small boy and 2 teenage girls. Settler parents of often actively encourage their children to assault Palestinians and stand with them as they stone Palestinian children.