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Nablus: Direct Targeting of Children

Early in the morning Friday, July 20, 2007, the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) arrested three Palestinian men and injured three others during an invasion in ‘Ein Beit Al Ma’ refugee camp located in the north of the West Bank city of Nablus.

According to several men living in ‘Ein Beit Al Ma’ the IOF entered the camp, shortly past midnight, raiding more than nine homes, terrorizing the women, children, and families as well as the community at large.

At 9:30 am nine international activists approached the refugee camp. The roads were blocked; the IOF soldiers yelled from their jeeps that they could not enter the area. The activists continued to walk the streets of the camp undeterred by their threats. The nine walked to the main road at the edge of the camp where two IOF jeeps were blocking traffic on either side.

Palestinian boys were victimized by the IOF fanatical anger and lack of control as they were shot at with rubber bullets and live ammunition from inside the IOF’s monstrous steel jeeps.

At this time several international activists positioned themselves in between the gun sticking out of the IOF jeep and the Palestinian boys. The activists shouted questions at the soldiers about the necessity of shooting young teenagers as well as their illegal and unwanted presence in Nablus. Several activists took video footage of the event.

After approximately 20 minutes, the soldiers in their fleet of jeeps left the city, not without first throwing a sound bomb out the door of their vehicle in close proximity to the medics and international activists.

After the Israeli withdrawal, two internationals left the camp for Rafidia Hospital where the three injured teenagers saught emergency medical treatment. Mohammed Salim Askr, 17, was hit in the stomach/abdomen by a rubber bullet and underwent emergency investigative laparotomy. Edres Abdul Agfro Kama, 18, was hit in his right leg by a rubber bullet. He received surgery last year on the same leg for another rubber bullet injury. This time, he received IV antibiotics and discharged himself. Ali Esa Ramadan, 12, took a rubber bullet in his left hand. He did not have a fracture and was discharged.