Affidavit No. 4887/2009

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, Thamina Khalil ‘Abd-al-Haq Hasan, of Palestinian nationality, holder of ID No. 850799644, born on 21 May 1988, a student at al-Quds Open University – Salfit Branch, and a resident of Qusra village, Nablus Governorate, would like to declare the following:

At around 8:15 am on 26 May 2009, I departed from our village of Qusra, together with six other persons, onboard a Ford Transit taxi, driven by Abu-‘Ubaiyda,. The taxi was taking us to our respective workplaces and universities in the governorates of Nablus, Ramallah, and Salfit.

About twenty minutes down the road, I got out of the taxi, near the Israeli Za’tara junction checkpoint, like I always do. The driver was on his way to the city of Nablus. It was 8:35 am. I stood at a distance of about seven metres away from the checkpoint, waiting for another taxi to drive me to al-Quds Open University in Salfit. After twenty minutes of waiting for a taxi, a young man, whom I did not know, arrived, stopping at a distance of five metres north of where I stood. One minute later, I was surprised to see an Israeli settler arriving from the southern area of the checkpoint on foot. He wore white shorts and a dark blue blouse, carried a pistol on his waist, and had a small beard. He must have been about 18 years of age.

The settler approached the young man, yelled at him in a language I did not understand, and pushed him. Meanwhile, an Arab taxi was passing near the checkpoint. The young man hurried to the taxi, stopped it, and climbed in. I tried to catch a ride with the same taxi, indicating to the driver that I wanted to get it. However, since the taxi was full and there was no room for me, the driver did not stop. After the taxi had left, I continued to wait at the checkpoint. I was really anxious.

The said settler was standing at the bus station right next to the checkpoint approximately four metres north of where I was standing. He was drinking juice while Israeli soldiers were present at a distance of about six metres to the northeast. One minute after he had finished drinking his juice, the settler approached me and shouted at me in a language that I did not understand. Without any prior warning, he started to kick me with his right foot on my right leg and hit me with his fist on my right arm. I screamed and looked at the Israeli troops positioned at the checkpoint. There were four soldiers in military uniforms, carrying long weapons, and wearing red berets on their heads as well as red signs on their arms. I could not tell whether they were officers or regular soldiers. I continued to scream waiting for them to come and help me. The soldiers, however, just looked at me with indifference. They were just standing there watching and blocking the northern and southern ends of the street, denying access to Arab vehicles.

One or two minutes after the settler had started beating me, I fell to the ground. Lying on my back, I was screaming and crying. Nonetheless, the settler continued to beat me with his fists and kick me with his feet on my legs and arms for fifteen minutes. The soldiers at the checkpoint did not intervene or help me in any way.

Then, an Israeli patrol arrived and stopped near me. Five soldiers in military uniform and with long weapons stepped down. I estimated that they were around 25 years of age. They immediately grabbed the settler and helped me stand up. Meanwhile, the settler kept trying to get away from the soldiers and approach me. However, the soldiers kept grabbing him, moving
him several metres away  from me. I did not see any signs indicating that these soldiers were officers.

Five minutes later, I saw a small car with yellow number plates arrive at the checkpoint from the Tappuah settlement area. The car stopped near the settler, who climbed in immediately and drove towards the settlement of Tappuah, located approximately 300 metres west of Za’tara checkpoint. Fifteen minutes later, another patrol arrived. Three soldiers, who were in military uniforms and carrying long weapons, stepped down. Two of the soldiers must have been around 25 years of age and the third one around 35. “Calm down, girl.” The soldier, who was about 35 years old, said to me as I was crying. “The settler beat me.” I responded. Then, I heard him ask soldiers of the other patrol about the settler. He was speaking in Arabic. They replied that he had gone to Tappuah. The said soldier responded that they would go there and get the settler.

“Where are you going?” the same soldier asked me. “To the university.” I answered. “Al-Najah University?” he inquired. “No. Al-Quds Open University.” I answered. “The road to Ramallah is not from here.” He commented. “There is a branch of al-Quds Open University in the city of Salfit.” I replied. About five minutes later, an Arab taxi passed by. After I indicated to the driver
that I wanted to hitch a ride, the driver stopped immediately and I got into the taxi. The soldiers did not obstruct my way to the taxi. Within half an hour, I reached my university. I told a colleague of mine what had happened to me and said that I felt pain in different parts of my body. He immediately went to thew Administration of the University and reported the incident. The Administration called a private car that took me to Salfit Hospital for medical treatment. At the hospital, doctors diagnosed me and found bruises and contusions on my right leg and arm. My leg and arms were also blue and swollen. I left after I was treated for about one hour at the hospital.

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 4887/2009
  • Field researcher: Yousef Qawareiq
  • Affidavit Date: 27 May 2009
  • Name: Thamina Khalil ‘Abd-al-Haq Hasan