Stop mass home demolitions in Hebron

On Monday CPTer Greg Rollins (Surrey, BC) walked around the area of Hebron that Prime Minister Sharon’s latest plan would bulldoze for a new Israeli settlement. The journalists with me shook their heads in disbelief “there’s just no way, without demolishing hundreds of Palestinian homes,” said Rollins.

Three homes near the site of Friday’s gunfight have already been demolished in retaliation. The Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz reported that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is proposing that Israel should “quickly” expand the Hebron settlements. “Sharon said that for “operational and political” reasons, Israel must move quickly. An opportunity has been created and facts have to be created in the coming 48 hours, he said.” (Ha’aretz, 18 November 2002)

Tuesday CPTer LeAnne Clausen (Mason City, IA) learned names of at least fifteen more Palestinian families near Kiryat Arba who have just been given home demolition orders. “These Palestinian families had no connection with the shooting — the site of Friday’s attack is not even visible from most of them. These demolitions would leave over a hundred innocent civilians homeless,” said Clausen. At least one of the families is a partner in CPT’s Campaign for Secure Dwellings.

Please fax brief notes to Israeli and US and Canadian officials protesting that these planned demolitions and settlement expansions are escalations of violence and violations of international law. Making families homeless contributes nothing to peace or security for anyone. Ask these officials to make urgent, strong and clear representation to the government of Israel opposing new settlements/settlement expansion in general, and Kiryat Arba/Hebron expansion in particular. In your fax, you may refer to information you have received from Christian Peacemaker Teams.

Ambassador Michael Bell, Canadian Embassy, 011-972-3-636-3384; Ambassador Daniel Kurtzer, US Embassy, 011-972-3-517-3227; Ambassador Daniel Ayalon, Embassy of Israel to the US, fax 202-364-5607, phone 202-364-5500; Ambassador Haim Divon, Embassy of Israel to Canada, fax 613-237-8865, phone 613-567-6450.