As you have already heard and seen on television, scores of people have been arrested over the past few days, and many homes were invaded. This catastrophe did not spare the Birzeit University community, be it the students, the faculty or the staff.
Due to the curfew and the disconnection of phone lines and electricity, the below information is all we were able to get concerning our staff, faculty and students. If you know anything or anyone we haven’t mentioned below, please contact us at Birzeit University, and supply us with your full name and phone number in order to get in touch with you.
Mohammad Ya’coub: Staff member at the National Conservatory of Music. Mohammad was arrested on Friday, March 29, along with others living in the Jabal Taweel neighborhood in Al-Bireh. His whereabouts are unknown.
Dr. Majdi El-Malki: Head of Sociology Department: The Israeli army took over his house on Friday, March 29. The army used it as a military base for three days, causing a lot of damage to the equipment, furniture and other personal belongings. As a result, Dr. Malki and his wife and two daughters had to stay with relatives.
Mirabo Shammas - Chief Financial Officer - he, his wife and two daughters were evacuated from their home on Saturday at 5.00 a.m., were left standing in the cold for a few hours, and were finally told that they can’t go back inside. They were evacuated, and had to go and stay with his uncle’s house, and have been staying there since. They were able to go back on April 2 when the curfew was lifted for a couple of hours - the soldiers had left, but they had done a lot of damage while searching the house.
Ali Taher - Faculty member in the Physical Education Department - he and his family were forced by the Israeli army to stay in a small apartment along with other families for the past four days.
Jane Lindsey - Irish Consultant from England sent by Friends of Birzeit University (FoBZU). Lindsey came here to work on a project with the Center for Continuing Education and the Mental Health Program, and was supposed to leave on Friday, March 29, but has been stuck in Ramallah. The Irish Representative Office has been unsuccessful in reaching an agreement with the Israeli occupation forces to guarantee her safe departure from Ramallah.
Qasr El Hamra - the 12 students at Qasr El Hamra student hostel received medicine on Tuesday, April 2 from the Palestinian Red Crescent Society. During the two-hours when the curfew was lifted, they were able to go and get some food, but were unable to go to a safer place, as no where in Ramallah can be declared safe these days. They are still living without electricity and water.
Board of Trustees Building - the building housing the Board of Trustees, the Center for Continuing Education, the National Conservatory of Music and Friends of Birzeit Association was invaded on Saturday. The side door leading to all these offices was forced open using explosives, and the damages as far as we know, are minimal.
Six students arrested - We know that they were arrested as they were shown on Television. Their books were torn and their computers smashed, but we don’t have their names.