In the latest and most serious incursion to date, Occupation forces rampaged through the village of Jayyous in the early hours of the morning on Wednesday. At least 50 youth have been arrested so far, and the village has been placed under an indefinite curfew, with residents being prevented from leaving their homes for any reason.
***image3***The raid began just after midnight, when 25 jeeps and 75 soldiers on foot entered the village and began breaking into houses near the south gate. Three youth were arrested from the homes in this part of the village, which is the focal point of Jayyousâ weekly demonstrations against the Wall.
After going through the homes near the south gate, Occupation forces then moved to break into the house belonging to the mayor of Jayyous. They took a mug shot of the mayor, and then proceeded to arrest his son. The soldiers then started ransacking homes throughout the village, shooting sound bombs at the houses before forcing their way in at gunpoint and terrorizing families. As of this morning, over 50 people have been arrested, including the youth committee of the Stop the Wall Campaign, which does much of the mobilizing work for the weekly demonstrations. The arrested youth have been rounded up and put in one of the schools in Jayyous, and have been detained there for hours.
In addition to the arrests, Occupation forces also destroyed the familiesâ belongings, including cabinets, pillows and mattresses, on the pretext of searching for arms during their house-to-house raids. Soldiers beat whoever tried to prevent them from breaking into the houses, including at least one elderly woman. They took pictures of the residents, and threatened to further brutalize them if they continued their resistance. Two people fell unconscious as a result of the shock and anxiety, and had to be rushed to hospital.
After conducting the raids, soldiers brought a bulldozer to seal off the two entrances to the village with mounds of dirt and stone. They then began shouting in loudspeakers throughout the village that Jayyous had been placed under curfew. The residents have been confined in their homes, and nobody has been allowed in or out of the village for any reason.
Following this, additional soldiers were brought in, bringing the total number to over 100. They went on to force their way into ten homes located at the highest points in the village. Located in the south, the centre and the north of Jayyous, these homes were occupied by the soldiers, who flew Israeli flags from the roofs in an attempt to antagonize the villagers. At the time of writing, soldiers are still occupying the houses and have positioned themselves on the rooftops, which serve as key surveillance and firing positions.
For several weeks now, Jayyous has been the site of intense repression at the hands of soldiers, who have not hesitated to enter the village and fire live bullets at youth. However, this operation is the most large-scale crackdown to date, aimed at threatening and intimidating the entire village in order to stop the strong weekly demonstrations that have been held in Jayyous for the past several months. The residents of Jayyous, however, refuse to bow down to this aggression. They will continue to resist until the Wall has fallen, the Occupation has retreated, and until they have achieved their freedom.