JOHN M COX coxj at
Mon Oct 9 13:03:27 MDT 2000

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 9 Oct 2000 14:38:04 -0400
From: Zahi Damuni <zdamuni at>
Reply-To: palestine-net at
To: zahi at

From: "DCI/PS" <dcipal at>

For Immediate Release
9 October 2000

ref:  002500


Israeli military violence against Palestinian civilians continues
throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip and inside Israel proper.  The last
few days have seen a dramatic escalation to the conflict, with Israeli
settlers and soldiers attacking Palestinian civilians and private property
and confrontations between Arab protestors and Israeli military forces at
Bab Al-Fatima, the last Israeli checkpoint on the Lebanese side before the
Israeli border.  On 7 October, Hizbullah activists captured three Israeli
soldiers who were serving in Occupied Arab Territory near Shab'a farms.
Yesterday evening, Israeli Jewish fundamentalists attacked Palestinian
civilians and property in Nazareth, killing 42 year old Mohammed Omar
Akawi. For the second evening straight, Israeli settlers, under the
protection of Israeli soldiers, rampaged throughout the Occupied
Palestinian Territories, destroying property and attacking Palestinian
civilians and their homes.  In Um Safah, north of Ramallah, Israeli
settlers attacked 40 year old, 'Assam Joudeh and set his body on fire.

DCI/PS views with grave concern the recent series of settler attacks, which
were preceded by demonstrations of Israeli settlers and right-wing
fundamentalists shouting slogans of 'death to the arabs'.  Beginning with
the killing of 18 month old Sarah 'Abdel 'Atheem 'Abdel Haq by an Israeli
settler on 1 October 2000 and continuing to the present, it is clear that
Israeli settlers are actively engaged in a war against Palestinian
civilians, thus, turning the rhetoric of slogans into tragic reality.  To
date, four Palestinians have been killed as a result of settler violence
and tens injured.  Moreover, Israeli settlers destroy Palestinian property,
attack homes, and randomly open fire against Palestinian civilians. These
actions occur with the full knowledge of the Israeli army, who rather than
arresting the settlers, provide protection for them, and instead, arrest
Palestinian victims.

In the confrontations that have erupted following Israeli opposition leader
Ariel Sharon's provocative 28 September visit to the Al-Aqsa compound, over
20 Palestinian children have been killed, with an additional four declared
clinically dead after sustaining serious injuries in the clashes.
Statistics reported thus far indicate that over 2,000 Palestinians have
been wounded, at least 18 of whom sustained injuries to the eyes.
Moreover, hundreds of Palestinian children have been forced to flee from
their homes in order to escape the random violence of Israeli settlers and
soldiers.  In the midst of these ongoing attacks, an atmosphere of fear
permeates Palestinian residential areas.

DCI/PS joins the growing number of local organizations, institutions and
individuals that are calling for international protection for Palestinian
civilians against the violent assault of Israeli soldiers and settlers. Of
particular concern to DCI/PS are the long-term psycho-social ramifications
the recent attacks will have on Palestinian children.  While the immediate
violence may end, the negative impact of the recent events will have
lasting effects on Palestinian children. Such afflictions affect the
child's life in every sphere, often causing great difficulty in their
ability to concentrate at school, to relate to their peers, to find
employment, and to develop normally.

As such, DCI/PS has launched a crisis intervention project in all areas of
the West Bank and Gaza Strip.  The project, which is being carried out in
coordination with the Palestinian Ministry of Social Affairs, will be
implemented within the framework of DCI/PS's Social Program and seeks to
reduce the adverse psycho-social affects on Palestinian children of the
ongoing violent clashes between Palestinian civilians and Israeli military
forces.  Around 175 trained psychologists and social workers will implement
outreach crisis intervention to homes, hospitals, schools, community
centers, and clubs.  In addition, individual, family, and group counseling
is available and a hot line for children and families in need of
psycho-social advice and/or counseling has been set up through the DCI/PS
offices in Ramallah and Hebron.

The project is being implemented with the assistance of numerous
Palestinian governmental and non-governmental organizations, and with the
support of UNICEF.  DCI/PS continues to seek additional support for the

The project is currently seeking trained social workers and psychologists
to volunteer in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

For more information or to support this initiative, please contact:

West Bank: Ibrahim Al-Masri, Project Coordinator,  (+972 2) 240 7530,
dcipal at
Gaza Strip: Imad Abu Dia, Tami Center, (+972 7) 284 1877


**Please note DCI/PS's new office location:

Sateh Marhaba, Al-Khulafa' Street
Al-Sartawi Building, 2nd floor
Tel:   +972 2 240 7530
Fax:   +972 2 240 7018

Our email, website, and mailing addresses will remain the same:
Email:   dcipal at
Website: (under construction)
Mail:   P.O. Box 55201

Directions to New Office:

Our new office is located in Sateh Marhaba, just off the main road between
Jerusalem and Ramallah.  When coming from Jerusalem, after passing Orabi
rental car and the PNA checkpoint, take the first street to the right, just
past the checkpoint.  Then, take the first left and then an immediate right
onto Al-Khulafa' street.  The new office is one block up Al-Khulafa'
street, in the Al-Sartawi Building, 2nd Floor.  There are signs posted,
starting at the main road, indicating the direction to the new office.

Defence for Children International/Palestine Section
is an independent, Palestinian non-governmental
organization, established in 1992 to promote and
protect the rights of Palestinian children as articulated
in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as well
as in other international instruments.

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