International observer assaulted

A Swedish member of TIPH was rushed to hospital after being hit by a big stone in his head outside a Jewish settlement in central Hebron on the 5th of March 2007. TIPH condemns this act of aggression against one of its members and urges the Israeli authorities to take action. (Hebron 06.03.2007)

A Swedish member of the civilian observer mission TIPH (Temporary International Presence in Hebron) was rushed to hospital after being hit by a big stone in his head outside a Jewish settlement in central Hebron Monday afternoon, 5th of March 2007.

TIPH condemns this act of aggression against one of its members and urges the Israeli authorities to take action.

Before the incident on Monday the TIPH patrol car was driving on Al-Shuhada street outside Beit Hadassah settlement when the patrol observed a group of four Israeli youth. One of them threw a large stone at the front window of the car. The patrol stopped at the checkpoint just outside the settlement. The soldier on duty had not seen the incident.

While speaking to the soldier the Swedish observer was hit on the side of his face with a big stone. Bleeding heavily he was first taken to Al-Ahli Hospital in Hebron. Later he was rushed to Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem for treatment. He was released from hospital early Tuesday morning after examinations showed no internal bleeding and no fractures to the skull.

– This incident is only the last in a number of serious assaults on TIPH observers in this area, Karl-Henrik Sjursen Head of Mission for TIPH says. If this is allowed to continue it is only a matter of time before the perpetrators will succeed in inflicting permanent bodily injury on one of their victims, or in the worst case, the loss of life.

– TIPH expects the Israeli authorities to take all necessary steps to put an end to these attacks.

TIPH is a civilian observer mission in the West Bank city of Hebron, consisting of personnel sent from the Foreign Ministries of Norway, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland and Turkey.

TIPH was called for during the Oslo peace talks by the Israeli government and the Palestinian authority to assist them in their efforts to restore normalcy to the city of Hebron. TIPH reports on breaches of regional agreements on Hebron and human rights law.