Over the past three days, Israeli military forces have invaded Palestinian neighborhoods in major towns and villages throughout the West Bank. In addition to occupying these residential neighborhoods with tanks and other heavy military vehicles, the army has imposed a continuous curfew on the residents, preventing them from leaving their homes for any purpose. Neighborhoods recently occupied are in cities and villages including Bethlehem, Ramallah, Tulkarem, Qalqiliya, Jenin, al-Bireh, Beit Jala, al-Khader, and ‘Aida Refugee Camp. Many residents of these neighborhoods are quickly running out of food

The Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees

Urgent Appeal

Widespread Occupation and Curfew of Residential Neighborhoods

October 20, 2001

Over the past three days, Israeli military forces have invaded Palestinian neighborhoods in major towns and villages throughout the West Bank. In addition to occupying these residential neighborhoods with tanks and other heavy military vehicles, the army has imposed a continuous curfew on the residents, preventing them from leaving their homes for any purpose. Neighborhoods recently occupied are in cities and villages including Bethlehem, Ramallah, Tulkarem, Qalqiliya, Jenin, al-Bireh, Beit Jala, al-Khader, and ‘Aida Refugee Camp. Many residents of these neighborhoods are quickly running out of food.

As a result of these incursions and the accompanying curfews, residents are unable to access medical services.Additionally, providers of primary and emergency medical services such as UPMRC have found it difficult or impossible to provide care to residents of these areas under curfew. The occupying forces are not making allowances for emergency situations. In one instance, a woman in labor with medical complications died in the car while trying to pass through a military checkpoint by the occupied village of al-Khader. 30-year-old Rihab Nufal was trying to travel to a hospital in Bethlehem from her village of Husan when she became the 26th Palestinian known to have died as a result of being denied access to medical care by the closures imposed by Israel over the past 13 months.

UPMRC calls upon medical and humanitarian organizations, solidarity groups, and the representatives of the international community to intervene in this crisis by all means possible. We particularly ask that letters of protest be sent to the Israeli prime minister and defense minister, demanding an end to the curfews and the withdrawal of Israeli forces from these neighborhoods. Please send letters to:

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon
The Office of the Prime Minister
Kiryat Ben-Gurion
Jerusalem
Fax: +972-2-566-4838 / 670-5415
Email: webmaster@pmo.gov.il

Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer
Ministry of Defense
Kaplan Street
Hakirya
Tel Aviv 67659
Email: sar@mod.gov.il

To view all UPMRC appeals and facts regarding the Israeli siege and use of force against Palestinian civilians, visit the UPMRC website at http://www.upmrc.org.  For further information, please contact Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi at +972-50-254-218 or the UPMRC office at +972-2-583-3510/ 2-583-4021.

The Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees
P.O. Box 51483
Jerusalem
Tel: +972-2-583-3510  Fax: +972-2-583-0679
Email: mrs@upmrc.org
Website: http://www.upmrc.org