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Affidavit No. 3349/2007

Sworn Statement

After having been warned to tell the truth and nothing but the truth or else I shall be subjected to penal action, I, the undersigned, 'Isam Mahmoud 'Abd-al-Khaleq Hamed, of Palestinian nationality, holder of ID No. 963530472, born on 23 May 1966, a worker and a resident of Silwad village, Ramallah Governorate, would like to declare the following:

At 7:00 am on Thursday, 1 February 2007, I was working, along with three other colleagues, on the roof of the second floor of the Jamal al-Tamimi building, which is located on the old airport road (al-Matar road). This road is located to the west of, and runs parallel to, the main Ramallah–Jerusalem road. We had been working in this area, which contains several buildings, for the past two months. From my position, I could clearly see the al-Matar road and Atarot. I could also see the separation fence, which is part of the Wall constructed by the Israeli occupying authorities to isolate Jerusalem from the West Bank.

At approximately 7:10 am, I saw four children, between the ages of 12 and 16, arrive at the al-Matar road. Three of them proceeded towards the separation fence. They were not holding anything in their hands. The distance between the children and I was approximately 120–150 metres. My colleagues and I became nervous because the Israeli solders and border police often come and throw tear gas and shoot rubber bullets or live ammunition when they see anyone approaching the fence.

At approximately 7:30 am, while my colleagues and I were drinking tea on the roof, I heard the sound of shooting. Four or five bullets were fired. We stood up, looking for the Israeli occupying soldiers. However, I did not see any jeeps or soldiers in the area. I thought that this was very odd. Then, I saw a child running away from the Liftawi building, which is located to the northwest of the building where I was working. I also saw two other children running away from an area of the fence located to the northwest of the building I was in. They were running towards the Jerusalem main road. As they were running, I saw a bullet hit the ground near the feet of one of the children. The bullet kicked up dust, and I saw the child look behind and stumble as he ran.

Ten minutes later, my brother 'Abd-al-Razeq, who was working on a neighbouring building, called me and told me to look at the western balcony of the Liftawi building. I did so, and saw a soldier wearing the light green uniform of the regular Israeli occupying army and holding a gun. I was astonished to see a soldier in that building, as we are not used to the presence of soldiers in such buildings. When the soldier turned his back to me, I saw a large amount of kit, including his bag, on his back. It was as if he was going to a war zone. Then, I returned to work.

After 15 minutes, I saw a border police jeep, which I recognised because its colour was dark green, inside the separation fence. The word "Police" was written on the jeep in English. As the jeep passed in line with the building where I was working, it reduced its speed and continued along the security road next to the fence, which is used solely by military jeeps, towards one of the watchtowers.

After 15 minutes, at approximately 8:00 am, several military jeeps belonging to the regular Israeli army came from the north (from the Ramallah-Jerusalem road), and stopped in front of the building I was working in. The jeeps were accompanied by a military ambulance bearing a red Star of David. At roughly the same time, another jeep belonging to the regular Israeli army arrived in the airport area.

Then, I saw approximately ten soldiers getting out of the jeeps. One of them was holding a stretcher. A number of the soldiers moved towards the area of the fence where the children had been earlier. A short time later, the soldiers returned from the area carrying a child on the stretcher. At this moment, I saw the soldiers who were standing on the road holding their heads high, looking at the western part of the Liftawi building and speaking Hebrew in very loud voices. Someone replied, but I was unable to understand their conversation as I do not speak Hebrew.

They put the child who was on the stretcher inside the ambulance. I did not see any medical aid being provided to the child prior to this. Nothing happened for ten minutes. After this time, the ambulance left the area towards the main Jerusalem road. It was accompanied by two jeeps, one in front of it and one behind it. Two other jeeps remained in the area.

Roughly 20 minutes after the ambulance left, a light green military vehicle arrived along the al-Matar road from the south. The vehicle stopped at the road near the main gate of the Liftawi building. Then, I saw seven soldiers, all of whom were wearing the regular military uniform of the occupying army, exit the building. After a short discussion with the soldiers on the road, all of the soldiers got into the vehicle.

Immediately afterwards, the two jeeps and the military vehicle left, travelling south along the al-Matar road. My colleagues and I returned to work at approximately 11:30 am. My nephew Jum’a 'Abd-al-Khaleq went to a nearby grocery store to buy some food for us. When he returned, he told me that the owner of the store had informed him that Taha al-Qaljawi, a child from the area, had been killed near the fence that morning.

 

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 3349/2007
  • Field researcher: Tareq al-Haj Mahmoud
  • Affidavit Date: 1 February 2007
  • Name: 'Isam Mahmoud 'Abd-al-Khaleq Hamed
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