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Israeli forces raid Bil’in, arrest member of Popular Committee

19 July 2009

At 5:30am, shortly after the Palestinian and international solidarity activists returned to their houses after patrolling the village all night, villagers gave the alert that four Israeli military jeeps were driving toward the village. Shortly thereafter, Israeli soldiers raided the house of Abd Al Fatah Bornat whose son, Muhammed Abd Al Fatah Bornat (age 21), they had arrested at 2am on July 17, 2009. His brother is also wanted by the occupation forces, but he was not at home this morning. The army left that home without making any arrests.

A few minutes later, they reached the house of Emad Bornat whom they arrested. Palestinian residents and international activists tried to block the path to the jeep where the soldiers were about to take the victim. They were pushed back violently by the army so that any attempt to de-arrest Emad was futile. As the jeep was about to drive off, the activists marched in a chain in front of it, preventing its escape. Soldiers in a second jeep then threw sound bombs and tear gas at the activists which made them disperse allowing the jeep to escape. The three remaining jeeps followed under a rain of rocks thrown by the villagers. They drove through the village while activists followed. After stopping at an intersection, soldiers took extensive video footage of all the activists. All the Jeeps then turned back and left the village with the victim.

The situation is extremely serious for Emad Bornat. He is currently undergoing medical treatment after a very bad tractor accident; which was caused because he had to pass a steep hill on the way to his land because he was forced to go through the Apartheid Wall. It is vital for him to continue receiving this treatment.