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IWPS: Israeli army imposes curfew as settlers raid the village of Kafr ad Dik

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Date of incident:
September 27th – September 28th 2008
Place: Kafr ad Dik, Salfit
Witness/es: Residents of Kafr ad Dik and IWPS volunteers

At approximately 4:00 in the morning on September 27th, the Israeli army entered the Salfit village of Kafr ad Dik and imposed a curfew. According to residents of the village, soldiers forcibly entered a number of homes, but after a few hours left the village. It is unclear whether or not they lifted the curfew.

According to media reports, these events were preceded by an incident west of Kafr ad Dik near the settlement of Ale Zahav, where Palestinian gunmen reportedly opened fire on a settler driving his car.

At approximately 9:30 that evening, around 100 settlers from the nearby settlements Ale Zahav and Pedu’el entered Kafr ad Dik on foot. According to eye witnesses, some of the settlers were accompanied by dogs and some were also armed. Residents of Kafr ad Dik state that five Israeli army jeeps returned to their village at approximately the same time as the settlers entered.

Marching along two parallel roads into Kafr ad Dik, the settlers reportedly hurled stones and rocks at the residents’ homes and cars, causing considerable damage to at least 16 houses and ten vehicles, including six trucks and two tractors. Apart from shattering windows and mirrors, the stones and rocks destroyed two families’ solar panels and hit Kafr ad Dik residents, causing minor injuries.

According to eyewitnesses, the Israeli army did not intervene to deter the settlers’ raid; instead, they renewed curfew at around 10:00 pm to prevent the Palestinians from leaving their houses.

When some residents of Kafr ad Dik challenged the curfew and went outside to defend their property, the Israeli army responded by throwing sound grenades and shooting tear gas canisters, rubber bullets and live ammunition.

During these confrontations, at least six people between the ages of 13 and 37 were injured by rubber bullets, sound grenades and physical assaults by soldiers. Three persons had to be taken to Salfit hospital by ambulances.

It is important to note that apart from these physical injuries, a great number of especially older people and young children suffered from severe stress and anxiety, caused by both the settler attack and the army’s actions.

After approximately an hour, the settlers left the village of Kafr ad Dik; according to the Israeli army’s Humanitarian Office, they tried to continue their raid in the nearby village of Al Lubban al Gharbi.

The army maintained its presence in the village until the early morning of September 28th. IWPS volunteers witnessed army jeeps infrequently patrolling the road that was earlier used by the settlers, throwing sound grenades, and firing flares and tear gas at the youth in the streets.