Sophia's Peace Work

Sunday, October 03, 2004

More from the Team in Hebron


HEBRON, WEST BANK - This morning members of the Christian Peacemaker Team(CPT) again escorted children from Tuba to their school in Tiwani in the South Hebron hills. They attempted to follow the same path, past the Ma'on settlement, as Chris Brown and Kim Lamberty had taken when they were attacked and badly injured last Wednesday 29th September.

Despite a military permit confirming the children's right to pass, the army and the settler security police blocked their path, declaring it to be a Closed Military Zone. After long negotiations the Israeli police finally allowed the children to pass with a police escort but without their CPT accompaniers.

On their journey home the children, with their CPT escort, were forced to take a 10-km detour along ill-defined sheep tracks. The actions of the military have made it clear that they are responding more to the wishes of the settlers than to the needs of the school children. Indeed the Lieutenant in command said outright - "Ten km is not a long wayto school. I went further than that. They can take a tractor like everyone else. These people are used to it".

Christian Peacemaker Teams are present in the area at the request of Palestinian villagers who are suffering repeated harassment from Israeli settlers while Israeli authorities have failed to intervene.


Meanwhile, here in Baghdad, I spent a frustrating day in the fruitless pursuit of PERMISSION at the Iraqi Ministry of Environment. Ah joy.


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