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From the field

Yusef 'Adur killed by the army during an incursion into Ramallah, January 2007

Nader Abu Rabah, vender

Nader Abu Rabah

Yesterday [4 January], around three in the afternoon, I was standing with my brother Jamal next to our wagon in the center of Ramallah, near the money changer a-Rian. We were selling coffee and tea. Two young men stopped next to the wagon and one of them asked for coffee. They said that special Israeli forces were in the vegetable market in al-Minara Square, in the city center, about 200 meters from where we were. Just then, I heard intense gunfire. I left my brother and walked toward the square to see what was happening. When I got there, I saw three or four Palestinian men who had taken a position next to the square and were firing at the Israeli special forces, who were in civilian clothes, from about a distance of 200 meters away. Two military helicopters were overhead.

The gunfire was intense, people began to flee, and I felt it was dangerous there. I ran back to the wagon, a distance of about fifty meters. When I got to the wagon, I saw some guys crouched beside it. My brother was lying on the ground. He had been wounded in the right hand. Blood was gushing out, staining his clothes. The other guys shouted to call for an ambulance. The ambulance arrived about ten minutes later. I put my brother in it and we drove to Sheikh Zayed Hospital . My brother was taken to the trauma ward for treatment.

About fifteen minutes later, when I knew that Jamal was all right, I went back to the wagon to move it. To get to it, I walked along a road that doesn't actually get to al-Minara Square. Rather, I went via Clock Square . I moved the wagon to the car parking lot nearby and then headed back to the hospital. When I reached the place where the wagon had been, opposite the money changer a-Rian, I saw that some guys had gathered there outside the range of fire from the square. Suddenly, a low-flying helicopter fired a volley of bullets at the area. It sounded like an air gun. One of the guys was hit and fell to the ground. The group of guys screamed. They picked up the wounded guy and rushed him to a nearby ambulance. The fellow who had been hit was wearing a black jacket, a blue shirt, and black pants. I heard the guys say that he was from Hebron . I went to the stairwell and hid there for about ten minutes.

When things quieted down a bit and the helicopter left, I went to the hospital. I saw the young men who had been near the fellow who had been hit by the helicopter fire. They said that the fellow - Muhammad 'Abd al-Qader 'Adur, who was thirty-two - had died.

That night, following coordination with the Israelis, my brother was transferred to al-Moqassad Hospital , in East Jerusalem . He needed an orthopedist because bones in his right shoulder had been broken.

Nader Zakria Muhammad Abu Rabah, 29, is a vender at the market and a resident of al-Birah, Ramallah District. His testimony was given to Iyad Hadad, at the scene of the incident, on 5 January 2007.