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Affidavit No. 4328/2008

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, Ibtihal Jamal ‘Abd-al-Rahman Mansour, of Palestinian nationality, holder of ID No 950170854, born on 5 September 1987, a 4th year student at the al-Najah University and a resident of the Rafidya neighbourhood, Nablus City, Nablus Governorate, would like to declare the following:

On 21 July 2008, my family members and I: my 46-year-old mother; my sister Bayan; 18 years old; and my brothers Bakr, 16 years old, and Badr, seven years old, were in our flat, on the 3rd floor in the Abu as Su'oud Building. We were asleep. Suddenly, my  family and I were woken up by the loud noise of vehicles. We concluded that these were Israeli army patrols.

I looked at my watch, which read 2:20 am. My mother went to a room and looked through the north-western window. She returned and told us that a number of patrol cars were surrounding the building. About three minutes later, we could clearly hear the sound of steps on the internal staircase of the building. Shortly thereafter we heard loud knocking on the door of our flat. "Open the door. This is the Israeli Defence Army. Get out!" a voice shouted.

The knocking was repeated several times. I turned on the lights in the house, went to the entrance and opened the door. I saw over 15 soldiers in regular military uniform, wearing helmets and carrying long weapons. A number of soldiers were crouched on the ground, pointing their weapons at me. Others were standing, also pointing their guns at me. Of these, one soldier had his face uncovered, another one was masked, and the others wore black face paint. I was shocked and stumbled back almost one metre.

All I could hear was soldiers yelling at us to get out. My mother and brothers were standing behind me. We refused to get out and stayed in the sitting room near the door. Soldiers entered the flat. The soldier with the uncovered face demanded that we present our ID cards, which we did. Most of the soldiers entered our rooms. Only one soldier stood beside us, pointing his weapon at us. "Keep silent!" he told us whenever we tried to talk with one another.

The other soldiers were dispatched into the rooms. We heard objects falling to the ground and the cupboards being opened. About 20 minutes later, I saw a number of soldiers take the computer out of my mother's room, as well as several boxes. I did not know what these contained.

A soldier in regular military uniform, carrying a long weapon and wearing a helmet, came along and asked us our names. I estimate that he was in his early thirties. When it was my mother's turn, the soldier asked if she was Muna? He also asked her if she had any illnesses. She said she suffered from a calculus in the gallbladder and inflammation of the colon. Then, he asked about the medicine she took. She answered that it had ran out. He then went into another room.

About ten minutes later, a black skinned female soldier in regular military uniform, with a long weapon and of around 20 years of age, arrived. This soldier said, "Muna, you will come with us." My mother was carrying my younger brother Badr in her lap. She tried to give him to us, but he refused to go. "Mother, mother," he cried. After several attempts, she managed to leave him. She asked the soldier to allow her to change her clothes. Having allowed her to do so, the female soldier accompanied her. My mother also asked the soldier to allow her to take some clothes with her, but she rejected. We wanted to embrace our mother, but the soldier refused. Nevertheless, we bid her goodbye. Then they went out. They did not handcuff or blindfold my mother.

"Forgive me because I spoiled your happy graduation from high school," my mother told my sister Bayan as she was walking out. We were supposed to have a party for my sister the following day for this occasion. My mother also told us to take care of Badr; he was sick and suffered from shortness of breath. He had undergone several surgical operations. I went to the north-western window to see where they would take my mother. After a soldier opened the side door, I saw my mother get into a large Israeli vehicle. Although they had my mother, soldiers came back. "Are there any soldiers left?" a soldier mocked. The soldiers stayed in the house for about 15 minutes and then left.

Afterwards, I went to the rooms. In addition to the computer, I found that they also seized several papers and documents belonging to my mother, as well as newspapers, which she used to collect and keep. My mother was a member of the Legislative Council. Soldiers also took CDs of games and scientific materials and four mobile telephones, including mine and my sister Bayan's. The other two mobiles were broken. In addition to throwing all the clothes and other objects in my mother's room on the ground, the soldiers took the memory stick of our digital camera. We found our ID cards on the television set.

Finally, I would like to note that I did not check whether any of the soldiers had the rank of an officer; I did not pay attention.

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 4328/2008
  • Field researcher: Yousef Qawareiq
  • Affidavit Date: 21 July 2008
  • Name: Ibtihal Jamal ‘Abd-al-Rahman Mansour
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