What happens when Israeli Border Police decide to stage a massive raid — looking for “tax delinquents” as well as “illegal West Bank worker” — in Shuafat Refugee Camp (the only Palestinian refugee camp inside the boundaries of what Israel unilaterally defined as the “Greater Jerusalem Municipality” in 1967?
The legal residents of the camp have Jerusalem IDs. But, in recent years, Israel has unilaterally decided to exclude it and close it off from Jerusalem by the construction of The Wall around three sides of Shuafat refugee camps — it is now only freely open to the West Bank.
And, an awful Israeli military checkpoint has been put at the main entrance into Shuafat Refugee Camp. Now, children needing to get to school in the morning, and adults needing to get to their jobs, all have to pass out of the camp through this prison-like checkpoint. The traffic jam, and the stress, are terrible — every day, day in and day out — imposing great stress on people who are technically residents of Jerusalem but who have become de facto West Bankers…
Though they still have to pay their Jerusalem taxes!
The CNN team in Jerusalem took some good footage under near-battle conditions, and the video can be seen by clicking on the link: here.
A few hours earlier, and not very far away, the Israeli military raided Ramallah/El-Bireh, and arrested the wife of the mayor of El-Bireh, apparently because of alleged activities on behalf of Hamas. And other Israeli military units raided the offices of the Stop the Wall campaign, carrying out a three-hour search operation, and carrying away documents, computers, videos and other materials found in the office.
And, still other units of the Israeli military raided another area of Ramallah and arrested two young women who were said to be members of the International Solidarity Movement. The two women were seized — in Ramallah — for overstaying their Israeli visas, and then taken to the Israeli military detention center in Ofer (still in the West Bank). Luckily, they had a lawyer who was able to take their cases before the Israeli Supreme Court, which ordered their release on bail while they contest their pending deportation. However, they are banned from returning to their apartment in Ramallah…