Caterpillar Excavator destroys homes #2
here, the occupation forces’ wrecking equipment destroys a small home in order to reach the Labadda house, which is to the left of the photo.
three homes were destroyed in this manner, to make room for the Caterpillar equipment to park within wrecking distance. while the Labadda house appeared to be the target of the demolition, three homes were completely leveled that surround the three-story structure.
blog entry about the incursion: "The Siege in Nablus today:"
blog entry: media lies about human shields in Jabal Shamali:
blog entry: news media pictures of Jabal Shamali casualties:
Israeli Army Kills 15 year old Demonstrator, Injures 12, and Demolishes Houses
August 26th, 2006
To view a video of the initial violence of the Israeli military and a collective punishment:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nablus, Palestine–Today, August 26, 2006, in the Jabal Shamali neighborhood of Nablus, soldiers of the Israeli Occupation Force (IOF) launched a 16 and a half hour incursion, wherein they killed one young boy, hospitalized at least twelve with many more injured, and destroyed twenty homes and apartments. The IOF entered the area around 2:00am, with over 26 military vehicles including armoured jeeps, hummers, border police jeeps, a Caterpillar D9 armoured bulldozer and Caterpillar “excavator” wrecking machines.
Upon entering the area, the army went to the Labbada house, a three-story building, built in 1927, and home to over seventeen families, including eights flats housing members of the Labbada family. Immediately after entering the area, the soldiers used loudspeakers to order the residents of the building to leave within one minute. At this time, seventeen families exited the building, and were detained on the street, from 2:00-4:00am, while IOF soldiers fired live ammunition over their heads.
Upon seeing the bulldozers, the families of the Labbada house made repeated offers to act as shields for the soldiers in order to allow them to enter the building to search for the target of the raid, but the soldiers refused, and soon began to demolish the homes. At 4:00am most of theresidents were released and allowed to enter the home of a neighbor, but one elderly man, approximately eighty years old, was further detained until around 9:00am when he was released.
At 3:00am, with the residents still detained in the street, IOF bulldozers and “excavators” began to demolish small homes surrounding the Labbada complex, in an attempt to reach the three-story building. Once the building around the Labbada house had been completely demolished, the army began to demolish the three-story building from three sides. At this time, soldiers entered the At Tamimi building, a two-story home adjacent to the Labbada complex, and used the top floor as a sniper position. At 9:30am, five men were kidnapped from the neighboring house and forced to enter the apartment being used as a sniper nest to act as human shields for the army.
These men were held from 9:30am-11:45am. The men are named Shadi, age 23, Majdi, age 35, Tamer, age 19, Rami, age 17, Mohammad, age 21 and Walid, age 64.
The army proceeded to demolish at least three homes bordering the Labbada complex, and an additional eleven flats within the complex. While they demolished the homes, the army fired almost constantly into the building, while also firing at demonstrators with live ammunition, tear gas and concussion grenades. During this assault, the soldiers repeatedly fired explosive grenades from M-16 assault rifles into the building’s windows.
While demolishing the homes, the army crushed at least eight automobiles, and utilizing a bulldozer, dropped three of them on a neighboring house. Also during the attack, IOF soldiers entered the adjacent children’s’ school and after knocking out the windows, used the area as a firing position to shoot at demonstrators. In addition, Palestinian medical volunteers reported that around 5:00pm, a large fire was seen blazing in the
Labbada house, the result of repeated IOF grenade fire.
During the demolition, young Palestinian demonstrators gathered on and around Amman street, and were fired upon repeatedly. Rafidia hospital has confirmed that during these clashes, Muntasir Sulaiman Muhammad Ukah, 15 from Askar refugee camp, was shot in the back and killed. Rafidia has also confirmed treating an additional 12 persons for injuries, they are:
Issam Fathi Joma’a, 27 years old, with shrapnel in his right shoulder.
Ammar Nizar Saed, 16 years old, shot in the hand.
Jaber Naser Abd-Alrahman, 16 years old, shrapnel in an unknown location.
Ayman Abed Al-kareem Al-Khayat, 17 years old, shot in left leg.
Rani Mohammad Al-akhbar, 18 years old, shot in the leg.
Mahdi Atif Shrooti, 13 years old, shot in the hip.
Abed Al-latif Tahseen Agha, 9 years old, with shrapnel in the neck.
Abed Al-aziz Khalel Jebril, 18 years old, shot with a rubber bullet in the right hand.
Fathi Mohammad, 80 years old, shot in the right leg.
Ramadan Husam Al-ajori, 13 years old, shot in the right leg.
Fadi Ahmad, 18 years old, show with a rubber bullet in the head.
Ahamd Zayad Solayman, 15 years old, shot in the back.
Local news sources report an additional ten injuries but only those named were transfered to Rafidia hospital. On at least two occasions, IOF soldiers prevented Palestinian ambulances from reaching injured persons in a timely manner.
The target of the incursion is unclear, but IOF soldiers arrested Nizar Labbada, 30 years old, before leaving the scene at 6:30pm. This is not the first time the 79 year old building was raided. In 2004, IOF soldiers attacked the building on four separate occasions in search of Firaz Labbada, now 34. Firaz was arrested in 2004 and is currently imprisoned until at least 2008.
Photo Evidence From the Last Incursion into Nablus
Home Demolitions in Jabal Shamali a “Mistake”
September 6th, 2006
by ISM Nablus
On Saturday the 26th of August, Israeli military invaded the Jabal Shamali area of Nablus and destroyed 22 homes [for a report, pictures and video, see the previous report on the ISM website]. The next day, Israel’s largest newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported that the home demolition was “a mistake,” and that the Israeli military failed to arrest two to three Fatah activists that were the target of the operation.
At the end of the incursion, five individual houses and one three-storey block of flats were destroyed. One of the six buildings demolished was a community meeting hall, the others homes belonging to the Saedi, G’name, Sa’eah and Lubaddeh families. Eight cars were also totally wrecked, five of which were dumped onto a neighboring house, causing structural damage in the form of broken base-beams in the roof and the bending of walls.
Additional houses were also damaged during the demolition. The home adjacent to the structure damaged by the demolished cars was severely burn-damaged, and three homes west of the apartment block were 80% destroyed and are now unlivable. In total, 22 homes and apartments were completely demolished, and an additional five homes were made unlivable.
About 100 people were made homeless by the Israeli military’s actions and are now evacuated to friends’ homes in surrounding neighborhoods, or forced to rent apartments around Nablus. With the help of friends and neighbors, they have removed the remains of their homes that were not completely bullet-ridden or shredded by bulldozers and are now planning on rebuilding the homes as they were.
The families have been given $15,000 collectively from the Palestinian government as aid for rebuilding their homes, and friends and neighbors collected an additional $17,000 for the same purpose. This is, however, far from enough money. The cost of rebuilding the Lubaddeh block of flats alone, as estimated by engineers, will amount to about $550,000.
The issue of home demolitions has been discussed at length by the Israeli High Court of Justice in many cases, including Janimat V. IDF Military Commander 1997. In the discussion of this case, published by the Israeli Supreme Court in “Judgments of the Israeli Supreme Court: Fighting Terrorism within in Law”, the Justices argue, “home demolitions are allowed only in light of especially serious terrorist activities, such as involvement in suicide bombings aimed at civilians… The demolitions are subject to legal principals, such as the principle of proportionality. For example, the measure may only be used if it is possible to limit it to the terrorist’s home, without demolishing adjacent dwellings. (60)” In addition, the President of the Court, A. Barak states, “[Demolitions are] implemented in stages and with care in order to prevent damage to the rest of the building. If damage is caused, it will be repaired. (62)” In the case of this incursion, the homes were demolished while searching for suspects, not “in light of especially serious terrorist activities.” In addition, 22 homes were demolished in their attempt to arrest, clearly violating the “principal of proportionality.” According to President Barak, the homes’ of the residents will be repaired, though follow through on this is unlikely.
Nizar Lubbadeh, who gave himself up to be arrested in a desperate bid to stop the demolition of his and his family’s home, was released shortly after questioning. One other man, Mohammad Ayad, was however arrested after the demolition and is still in jail.
According to the Nablus Municipality, 220 buildings have been destroyed in Nablus since the beginning of the current Intifada in September 2000. This number excludes the large number of homes destroyed in Israel’s “Operation Defensive Shield” in 2002. Following this most recent incursion into Jabal Shamali, the number is now up to 242. This attack marks one of the largest houses to be destroyed. Other big demolitions include a 9-storey building in Rafidya Al-Makhfiyya 3 years ago, belonging to Jafar Maasri who was killed by lethal gas in the Old City, and the Al-Sudder family home in New Askar refugee camp about one and a half years ago.
Amer and Allam Lubbadeh, two brothers made homeless by the demolition, urge anyone who wishes to donate money to the rebuilding of their family home to contact the Palestinian Red Crescent in Nablus, by telephone at 09-2384151, or by fax at 09-2380215.