Al- Shuhada Street is the main street in Hebron in southern part of the occupied West Bank. Al-Shuhada Street is a major commercial street, is connects between the north and the south of Hebron. Al-Shuhada Street could be compared to any major Street in New York that links between East of Manhattan and the south of Manhattan in the city.
Closing Al-Shuhada Street started in 1994 after the zionist terrorist Baruch Goldstein, an American National and jew from the Kach terrorist group committed a massacre on February 25, 1994 against Palestinian Muslims worshipers who were praying at the Ibrahimi mosque downtown. After the massacre in which over 50 Palestinians were murdered, the Israeli military “central command” Gen. Ilan Biran, a former Golani brigadier perpetrator of destruction of many Palestinian towns and cities in 1967, imposed a curfew on the Palestinian victims in Hebron which lasted for over 40 days. He closed some streets in the old city, among them Al-Shuhada street. The ethnic cleansing step followed, by preventing the Palestinian shopkeepers from opening the doors of their shops completely. They were only allowed to open one side of the door of their stores.
The ethnic cleansing continued and intensified under the followed war criminals of the “Central Command” which followed: Gen. Uzi Dayan, General Moshe Ya’alon, it worsened under Gen. Yitzhak Eitan, Major General Moshe Kaplinsky, Gen. Yair Naveh, Gen. Gadi Shamni, and now under the current war criminal Gen. Avi Mizrahi.
In 2000 under the command of war criminal Moshe Ya’alon, an ethnic cleansing order was issued which prohibits the owners of the Palestinian shops to open the doors of their shops without obtaining a military permission issued by Col. Yigal Sharon, (אל”מ יגאל שרון), then the military occupation brigadier in Hebron and Col. Amnon Cohen, the head of the military occupation so-called Civil Administration (DCL).
During the last 10 years Al-Shuhada Street was almost daily under curfew or closed to the Palestinians who live there. The American and European jewish squatters living in the center in the Al-Dabuya building, now called “Beit Hadassa” and “Tel Rumeida” now called “Admot Ishai”, could come and go as it pleased them. These criminals were terrorizing the Palestinians living in the area and all the shops remained closed. The IDF criminals placed uncounted military checkpoints in the streets and on the rooftops of the Palestinian residents of Al-Shuhada Street and the surrounding areas, they sealed the entrances to small streets and placed many electronic doors and gates. They also sealed the windows of Palestinians and issued uncounted military orders which prohibited the residents to live their houses in the city “for security reasons”.
During the last several months, every Saturday some young peace activists working against the closure of Al-Shuhada Street have led a nonviolent peace action titled “Open Shuhada Street”. The activists stand at the entrance to the Old City of Hebron and chant “open the street for the Palestinian owners of the city”. The peace demonstrations met the brutally of the IDF brigade commander Lt. Col. Guy Hazut, (סא”ל גיא חזות) the military orders of the IDF central command Major General Avi Mizrahi, (אלוף אבי מזרחי) and the ethnic cleansing decisions of the Brig. Gen. Yoav “Polly” Mordechai, (אלוף יואב (פולי) מרדכי) the so called the “head of the civil administration” and Brig. Gen. Nitzan Alon, (תא”ל. תא”ל אלון ניצן) the so-called the IDF brigade in the West Bank.
See the Video below. Credit of the IDF war crimes and horror seen in the film: Major General Avi Mizrahi, Brigadier General Yoav “Polly” Mordechai, Lieutenant Colonel Guy Hazut, Lieutenant Dean Nahum, and Brigadier General Nitzan Alon.
According to the CPT, American religious extremists living the old city and the Israeli military and police forcibly welded shut three Palestinian stores that stand directly behind the area of the weekly Saturday peace action and across the gate of an Israeli military checkpoint.
A local Palestinian friend alerted CPT at 2:45 pm that the shopkeeper had received a warning that the military would close his shops, and he had half an hour to remove all his merchandise. After arriving at the site, CPTers alerted other internationals, partner organizations and media to come. A crowd of about 75 people assembled in front of the stores. As they waited, Palestinians removed and hid two of the shop doors.
After 4:00 pm, 30 soldiers and three policemen arrived and pushed their way into the shops where internationals and Palestinians were waiting. The soldiers pulled the civilians out of the shops, scattered much of the merchandise, and dragged a Palestinian behind the gate. Red Crescent of the International Red Cross came shortly thereafter and examined the Palestinian man who had been injured while being dragged. They determined he had a brain concussion and advised the police that he needed hospitalization. The police replied they would take the Palestinian man to the jail, question him and then decide if he needed hospitalization.
Declaring the area from the military base to the stores a “closed military zone,” the soldiers formed two lines and progressively forced the crowd away from the stores being closed. Other soldiers retrieved the two hidden doors and welded shut the three shops. An Israeli policeman pushed the shopkeeper’s large cart of merchandise into one of the stores before the doors were welded shut. One of the CPTers urged the policeman to bring the cart out of the shop or allow her to retrieve it for the shopkeeper, but the policeman refused. One British man and four Palestinians were arrested.
The British man was released the next morning at 2:30am on the condition that he immediately leave the West Bank and not return for 15 days. The four Palestinians are now in Ofer Prison. The brother of the man with the brain concussion reported to CPTers that his brother was never hospitalized.
21 August, 2010 – The CPT reported that the regular Saturday Action “Open Shuhada St.” changed tactics this August 21, 2010. Since the police had threatened two of the organizers with large fines and a possible ten-year imprisonment if the demonstrations continued, the organizing group felt it better to use a new approach during the remainder of Ramadan.
The activists used the day to build up relationships in the Old City with certificates of appreciation to the shopkeepers for continuing to open their shops every day in the midst of this Occupation. Led by an energetic group of Israeli activist drummers and rhythm instruments, approximately 75 Israeli, Palestinian and international activists marched through the Old City, Hebron. Activists distributed flayers and gave certificates of appreciation to all the shopkeepers, encouraging them to continue their resistance to the Occupation.
The police had been discouraging the shopkeepers, telling them that their shops, like the three shops in Bab Al-Baledeyya just ten days earlier, were also in danger of being welded shut.