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From the field

Settlers attack child and injure person who tries to help him during disturbances following the terror attack at Beit Hagai Junction, Hebron District , 26 June 2005

Muhammad a-Sharif, age 10

I live with my family in an old house a few meters away from al-Haram al-Ibrahimi (Tomb of the Patriarchs) in Hebron . My father is the mu'azzin of the al-Mu'minin Mosque in South Hebron . I'm in the sixth grade. I decided to work during the summer vacation to earn money for my family. This morning, my mother prepared a tray of sweets for me and I went to sell them on a-Sahala Street, which is near our house. When I got close to the Abed checkpoint, which is staffed by Border Police, two boys from the al-Madhun family bought sweets from me. At the same moment, a group of five or six settlers started to harass me. They came near me, shouted at me and tried to attack me. One man wore an orange-colored shirt, and another man, who looked younger than the first, had a beige shirt on. The others were fourteen or fifteen years old.

Just then, a man who looked thirty years old came from the direction of a-Sahala Street. He walked towards Abed Checkpoint, and I wasn't more than fifteen meters away from it. He was wearing work clothes. When I was by the stairs of the 'Abd al-Mahdi Qafisha family's house, that man grabbed me by the shoulder and told me not to be afraid. He continued to walk alongside me to shield me from the settlers. Suddenly, the settlers rushed towards the man and violently attacked him. The settler in the orange shirt hit him hard on the chest and knocked him down. The man fell on his back. It appeared that he had hit his head on the asphalt, because he wasn't moving. I ran home right away, and I don't know what happened to the man. I heard my mother saying that the man who was attacked is Fares al-Batesh, who lives in the Old City and works as a tractor driver with the Rehabilitation Committee. She also said that an Israeli ambulance took him to the hospital.

About an hour after the incident, I returned to the street and continued to sell the sweets.

Muhammad Hassan Muhammad a-Sharif, 10, is a student in elementary school and a resident of the Old City in Hebron. His testimony was taken by Musa Abu Hashhash, at his home, on 26 June 2005