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Affidavit No. 1844/2004

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, Hafeth Mohammad Ismail Hazahzeh, holder of ID # 954730974, born on 7 October 1962, working at Izziddin Samara Farming Nursery, and resident of Far'oun area in the district of Tulkarem, would like to declare the following:

At around 10:30 am of Monday 7th June 2004, and during my time at work in Izziddin Samara farming nursery, which is located approximately in the middle of Far'oun town, I saw a resident of the village of Far'oun named Omar al Jaber Farkh who is mentally retarded, suffers a physical disability in his arm and is deaf and dumb, enter the nursery running. Entering through the nursery’s only entrance on the western side, he kept constantly looking behind his back with expressions of extreme fear and terror evident on his face. Although he was screaming incomprehensible words, it seemed he was asking for help. Soon after Omar Farkh entered the nursery and approached me, I saw an Israeli military jeep stop at the entrance of the nursery and two Israeli military soldiers came out of it, wearing full military gear and armed. At that point, Omar Farkh started running again in the eastern direction behind the greenhouses. I realised that Omar was afraid, because these two soldiers had asked me to come closer to them which I did. When I reached nearby the jeep, the Israeli soldiers pointed their guns at me and asked me, in Arabic, not to speak and to stand besides the jeep motionless. I told them that the person they were pursuing was mentally retarded, at which point one of the soldiers screamed at me in Hebrew to "Shut up". In this instance, Omar Farkh peeked at us from behind the greenhouses, 50 meters towards the east away from the Israeli soldiers and me, as a result of which the Israeli soldiers aimed their guns at him and demanded in Arabic that he stop.

At that point, Omar started running again towards the east, and I saw one of the Israeli soldiers shooting bullets in the air, while the other aimed his gunfire towards Omar. In the beginning only several bullets were shot, then the shooting became heavier. During that period, I could not see Omar Farkh because of the greenhouses that stood in the line of my vision from where I was standing. As for the Israeli soldiers, they could see him because they had taken up positions that would enable them to do so. After less than two minutes, the shooting stopped and the Israeli soldiers asked me to leave the nursery, which I did because I was afraid of getting killed at the hands of these soldiers if I refused. One of these soldiers was tall, with dark skin, around 25 and with Hebrew as his mother tongue (he barely spoke Arabic). As for the second soldier, I could not tell whether he was an Israeli of Arab or Jewish origin, although it is worth mentioning that he was the first soldier who shot towards Omar Farkh. I left the nursery and I told the people gathered there that Omar Farkh was probably killed or injured.

At that point, several Israeli jeeps arrived on the scene, accompanied by an ambulance for the Israeli Army and one from the Palestine Red Crescent Society. At around 11:10, Omar Farkh was transferred to Thabet Thabet Governmental Hospital in Tulkarem, where it was later announced that he had become a martyr as a result of fatal injuries to the chest and abdomen. I would like to point out that this Israeli force is practically present in the town of Far'oun on a daily basis, and that although the Israeli soldiers know of Omar Farkh's condition, they nevertheless insisted on killing this mentally retarded and physically handicapped human being, who does not pose a threat to the life of the smallest creatures on this planet. This incident has deeply affected the people of the town and confirms the cruelty and ugly nature of the Israeli occupation.

Date: 20 June, 2004

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 1844/2004
  • Field researcher: Tareq al-Haj Mahmoud
  • Affidavit Date: 20 June, 2004
  • Name: Hafeth Mohammad Ismail Hazahzeh
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