Deadly Rumours?

Rumours are flying again. The IDF told the ICRC and UNRWA that the military curfew would be lifted at 2pm. To allow people to leave their houses to pick up bread, water, food, medicines. A friend from the UN calls me with this information; Representative Offices in Ramallah has also been in touch with the IDF, confirming it. So is it true? Can people leave their houses without being shot? Can people get out of Ramallah?

In this sort of situation, information and rumours can be deadly. The IDF confirms that people will be allowed out into the streets for at least two hours, starting at 2pm. But is this 2pm Israeli time or 2pm Palestinian time? The IDF says that foreigners can leave. But not ‘duals’. Meaning that even if you have a foreign passport, if you are also Palestinian, you can’t leave. And if you are Palestinian, you definitely cannot get out.

How can people get out? The IDF says yellow (Israeli) plates or diplomatic plates only. How, which way? Through Qalandia or the DCO/Bet El? Are they letting embassy cars in to come and get people? No. No. But most importantly, can the IDF confirm that it has informed its snipers to let people out to get supplies? The IDF is vague.

So people are too scared to leave. Some people are maybe desperate enough to chance leaving their houses to get supplies. Others might try to get out. And people might get killed. More people.

But this dangerous rumour game just changed again - the IDF has just now apparently told the Norwegian Representative Office that no one will be allowed out at all.