On Tuesday October 10th at 6:30 pm, Israeli Occupation Forces entered Lower Ramallah shooting their way through the city. One ISM volunteer on the scene reported having witnessed at least 9 Army Jeeps as well as a bulldozer. The ISM volunteer was not allowed near where the soldiers were trying to detain Palestinians. Israeli Jeeps glared their spotlight directly at her warning her to not approach any further. The scene was near the Arab Bank in Lower Ramallah. She reported hearing endless rounds of ammunition fire, sound grenades and single sniper shots apparently aimed at intended targets. Palestinian boys chanted nationalistic songs near the scene but remained well hidden and out of harm’s way. There were no reports of fatalities, but one Palestinian man has been injured. The seriousness of the injury is not yet known.
Palestinians gathered in the streets as well as on their balconies and rooftops, occasionally ducking or hiding from nearby shooting. The scene was very dangerous and Ramallah was left littered with rubble and empty bullet shells, a scene Ramallah has not witnessed since Israel invaded on September the 8th, kidnapping an entire family.
At 7:25 pm the Army jeeps began to retreat and hundreds began following the jeeps deeper into the buildings in order to reach the families whose sons were taken. The ISM volunteer reached the house that 3 brothers were aggressively dragged out of and into Israeli custody. The scene left a mother wailing and sisters sobbing. Other women present were screaming that “We will not let Israel win, we will not surrender”. One women of the family needed medical assistance as she was severely exhausted from crying. Television crews were filming the grieving families whose son’s fate has yet to be known.
The bulldozer was reportedly not used to demolish any buildings. Israeli Border Police were present which leads us to believe that their presence had no purpose other than to be prepared for an international presence (the ISM Media office is in Lower Ramallah, near the Arab Bank). While retreating, Israeli Hummers and Jeeps shone their spotlights all around them.
The approximate hour long Israeli shooting in Ramallah left one Palestinian injured and 4 in Israeli prisons, including Assam Bahdadi who was “wanted” by the Israelis. Fortunately no one was killed, at least this time around.
For more information:
Iman 054 786 7142
ISM Office 02 297 1824