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OCHA Weekly Briefing Notes

Update for oPt (06 – 13 April 2004)

INSIDEINSIDE:   Casualties — Incidents involving ambulances — Curfew — House demolition — Land levelling/confiscation — Checkpoints/roadblocks/Barrier/restrictions on movement — Education — Labour movement to Israel —  Appendix

1.  Casualties

Palestinians: 5 deaths, 33 injured
Israelis: 0 deaths, 4 injured

Sources:  OCHA FCU, PRCS, IDF website, Israeli MoFA

2. Incidents involving ambulances and medical teams

Denial of access: 2 incidents

Delay (2.5 hours): 1 incident

Physical/Verbal abuse of Medical team:  2 incidents

Shooting/Damage to Ambulance: 1 incident

3. Curfews

Curfews were reported in the following locations:


4. House demolitions/Demolition Orders

12 April: a 3-storey building was demolished in the area west of Netzarim settlement in the Gaza Strip
Sources:  OCHA FCU, Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights, PCHR

5. Land levelling/confiscation1

West Bank:

07 April: Israeli settlers from Pnei Khever settlement, Hebron district, set up 20 caravans outside the boundaries of the settlements on the southern part.
08 April: Local council in Hizma, Jerusalem district, received seizure order No 33/04 for the confiscation of 83.6 dunums for the construction of the Barrier north of Hizma village on road 437.
13 April: Israeli contractors started uprooting the olive groves in the valley between al Khas and An Nu'man villages in Bethlehem district for the construction of the Barrier.
11 April: Israeli settlers from Sysia destroyed 14 dunums of land planted with wheat and barley west of the settlement.  The land belongs to farmers from Yatta, Hebron District.


 • 08 April: IDF bulldozer destroyed three greenhouses of tomatoes and cucumbers at Orayba area in Khan Yunis.


1 4 dunums = 1 acre

Sources:  OCHA FCU

6. Checkpoints/roadblocks/Separation Barrier/Restrictions on movement

Tulkarm/Qalqiliya governorates:

The last week continued to see a relative relaxation in the movement in Qalqilya governorate.  In Tulkarm, the Kafriat checkpoint was closed for all Palestinians except for international organizations and medical staff, teachers/students and official employees.  Closure of the Kafriat checkpoints was re-enforced 10-12 April for all Palestinians including the group of students, teachers and official employees.  International organizations and medical staff were exempted.  All permits into Israel were suspended during these days. Restrictions on Israeli citizens into the West Bank are still in force.
The two villages of Ramin and Shufa are still under closure.  All access roads are blocked and controlled by the IDF.  Local villagers are using alternative roads to access Tulkarm town.  Only ambulances are able to access the villages from road 57 in co-ordination with the IDF.
The commercial traffic between Qalqiliya and Tulkarm governorates was also restricted from 10-12 April.
13  April:  the IDF re-opened the DCO office in Tulkarm, which has been closed since 12 February.  The office is currently only open for the issuance of magnetic cards.
Construction of the tunnel between Habla and Qalqilya town is ongoing.
Opening statistics of Barrier gates are listed below in the table.  The announced opening hours of the agricultural gates have not been strictly adhered to by the IDF.  There were frequent delays.

Nablus/Jenin/Tubas governorates:

10 April:  Flying checkpoints were erected at the entrance of Qabatiya and al Zababda south of Jenin.
10 April:  Tayaseer Gate east of Tubas was closed.  A metal detection machine was installed at the checkpoint.
10 April:  All female Palestinians were denied access at Huwwara and Beit Iba checkpoints.
Two flyinglying checkpoints were erected at tastern and western entrances of Kuful Raái village south of Jenin.

Ramallah/al-Bireh/Beituniya governorates:

11-13 April:  Permanent checkpoints were in operation at an Nabi Saleh gate and Atara bridge.  Long delays were experienced.

Jerusalem/Jericho governorates:

Construction of the Barrier is continuing in different sections from Khallet an Nu’man northwards near Har Hommah settlement, Ash Sheikh Sa’ad, Sur Baher, Sawahriya ash Sharqiya, Abu Dis and Al ‘Eizariya.
The construction of the Barrier in Al ‘Eizariya east towards Mount of Olives near Beit Fagi monastery is moving rapidly.  The Barrier is in the form of 8m concrete slabs, which will close the remaining section of the passage from Al ‘Eizariyah to the Mount of Olives.
The construction of the Barrier opposite Al Quds University is moving rapidly.  The Barrier is in the form of 8m concrete slabs.
The construction of the Barrier ongoing opposite az Za'yem Checkpoint with land levelling east of the valley towards Ma’ale Adumim settlement.
Land levelling for the construction of the Barrier in the north western villages of Beit Surik, Biddu Beit Duqqu and Bet Ijza started again on 27 March.  The levelling stretched for approximately 2km.
IDF continued placing concrete slabs in the middle of the road between Dahiet al Barid and Qalandiya checkpoint.  The stretch is 1000m long.

Bethlehem/Hebron governorates:

09-13 April: The IDF continued to close off the secondary dirt roads opened by Palestinian residents in the village of an Nu'man village, Bethelehem District, which keeps the village totally closed.
The number of valid permits for the Hebron national bus company is 34, of which 26 for public transport between Hebron and Bethlehem and 8 for movement between Hebron and Jericho.  Buses and passengers were searched at Gush Etzion checkpoint and drivers faced problems in collecting passengers at al Khadr junction due to flying checkpoints set up there during the reporting period.  No busses headed to Jericho this week since the Container checkpoint has remained closed since 22 March.


The enclosed areas in Gaza:

As-Seafa: Movement remains restricted by the IDF with the entry-exit gate opening twice daily for As-Seafa ID holders from 06:30 to 08:30 and 14.00 to 16.00. Motor vehicles are not allowed to enter since November 2000, with the exception of international agencies that have undertaken prior coordination with the IDF. Since 28 January 2004, IDF started to allow women to get in and out of As-Seafa but movement is subject to body search and with 24 hours prior coordination.

Al-Mawassi: IDF imposed restrictions remain, with the entry-exit gate at Tuffah checkpoint opening twice daily for Al Mawassi ID holders from 07.00 to 09.00 and 14.30 to 17.00.  No passage is possible for male Al Mawassi ID holders aged 15-23 without prior coordination. Youths aged below 15 must be accompanied by a guardian. Motor vehicles are not allowed to enter, with the exception of international agencies that have undertaken prior coordination with the IDF.

7 April – 11 April:  Tel Es-Sultan checkpoint was closed but Toufah checkpoint was open for residents leaving Al Mawassi.  Males aged 18 – 40 require prior coordination to return back.
12 April:  Both At-Toufah and Tal as-Sultan checkpoints were completely closed.
13 April:  Tal As-Sultan checkpoints closed.  All males and females aged under 40 require prior coordination to both enter and leave Toufah checkpoint.

Kfar Darom.  The Palestinian area adjacent to Kfar Darom settlement was declared a Closed Military Zone following a suicide attack on 27 February 2004.  Since 20/7/2003 no vehicular movement was allowed as the IDF erected a fence around the area.  Movement restricted by the IDF with the entry-exit gate opening four times daily for Al Ma'ni ID holders from 06:30 to 07:30, 10:30 to 11:30, 13:00 to 14:00 and 16:00 to 17:00.


7. Education

The closure of Kafriat checkpoint in Tulkarm between 10-12 April affected the movement of teachers and students especially on  Sunday and Monday morning for those who rely on access through Kafriat checkpoint.  Students from neighbouring villages were forced to use alternative routes to attend their classes in Tulkarm town.  School children from Jbara village in Tulkarm governorate were collectively transported by a bus company.
10 April:  IDF entered a nursery school in Nablus.  Children were forced to leave the nursery.
12 April:  IDF patrols fired tear gas canisters into two UNRWA boys' schools, one in Al-Am'ari refugee camp and one in Qalandiya refugee camp.  Five pupils from Al Am'ari and eight pupils and a teacher from Qalandiya were injured.
According to villagers in Bani Zeid (Beit Rima and Deir Ghassana villages) IDF patrols in the area are increasingly harassing school pupils.
10 April:  The IDF entered two adjacent schools in Dura, Hebron district, before lesson started in the morning.  Clashes erupted and as a result three students were injured by rubber-coated metal bullets.


8. Labour movement to Israel

West Bank:

Tulkarm/Qalqilya: All work and trade permits have been suspended since 22 March until further notice.
Nablus/Jenin/Tubas: No work and trade permits were issued due to the closure announced till 26 April.


2,824 workers crossed on 08 April into the Erez Industrial Zone, 57% of a total of 5,003 workers issued permits.

13 April:  in a protest against IDF security procedures, Palestinian workers at Erez Industrial Zone protested against IDF security procedures and went on strike refusing to enter.  3 workers sustained light injuries.



Appendix: Checkpoints Status 07 – 13 April 2004

Document Type: Note
Document Sources: Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
Subject: Incidents, Situation in the OPT including Jerusalem
Publication Date: 13/04/2004