Uno studente avverte su Facebook: "Israeli occupation forces stormed the village of jayyous and imposed a curfew until further notice"
Jayyous è un villaggio della West Bank a pochi chilometri dalla costa di Tel Aviv, nei dintorni di Qalqilya. E' circondato dal filo spinato, il "muro leggero" israeliano realizzato fin dal 2003, che ha tagliato agli agricoltori del paese ettari e ettari di terreno coltivato, soprattutto a olivi. In questo periodo le condizioni di vita degli abitanti palestinesi si fanno sempre più complicate, proprio in concomitanza con la raccolta delle olive: infatti i controlli vessatori dell'esercito israeliano ai check point rendono particolarmente difficile e tesa la quotidiana esistenza dei palestinesi.
A Jayyous, circa cinquanta partecipanti alla Carovana "Sport sotto l'assedio", ad aprile del 2009 sono stati ospiti ed hanno potuto toccare con mano, anche se per soli 4 giorni, le problematiche del vivere sotto occupazione.
Dalla notte del 20 ottobre, Jayyous è nuovamente sotto assedio israeliano: stiamo parlando di un villaggio di 2000 anime, composto di stradine e vicoli in cui la vita scorrerebbe tranquilla tra le botteghe, la scuola del Charity Centre e diverse strutture attrezzate per i numerisissimi bambini e ragazzini presenti. Sappiamo, avendo vissuto alcuni giorni con i ragazzi dell'organizzazione locale di attivisti contro il muro, quanto angosciante sia vedere le Jeep israeliane scorazzare per il villaggio la notte, quanto pericoloso sia un assedio che viene sempre anticipato da incursioni con i gas che soffocano il paese intero e da sparatorie che il più delle volte colpiscono qualche bimbo che gioca per strada.
Noor ha ventuno anni, è figlio di contadini ma non può attraversare il check point per andare a lavorare, così gestisce l'unico internet point della zona, luogo che ci ha accolto nelle serate della carovana, in cui potevamo ascoltare un po' di musica, socializzare con i giovani palestinesi e aggiornare i nostri siti durante la permanenza.
Questa intervista a Noor, che ieri ci ha comunicato l'inizio dell'assedio israeliano tramite Facebook, è di circa un mese fa, quando erano stati effettuati alcuni arresti ingiustificati in paese, come purtroppo d'abitudine accade.
A Jayyous, Noor e gli altri ci hanno fatto sentire a casa. Insegnandoci a mangiare le mandorle acerbe cogliendole dagli alberi, quasi non ci fosse il tempo di aspettare, di farle maturare.
Noor, have there been Israeli army raids in the village, this summer? Are you under curfew?
There have been a number of Israeli raids this summer - during the period June through August there have been 1 raid.. There has been no curfew this summer.
The army still pays a frequent visit to Jayyous, even if this is considered a “quiet period”. Usually the army comes in the middle of the night when people are sound asleep, to arrest one or more persons. The families, who experience the soldiers coming into their homes at night, tell us that they become very anxious and afraid when the soldiers storm into their homes. The soldiers behave frequently in a way that is felt as aggressive and scary. The most normal procedure is to take the wanted person out of the bed, blindfold him and put handcuffs on him, while the soldiers force the family into one corner of a room. This often creates a lot of crying and anxiousness in the family, as they don’t know where the soldiers are taking him. Several families have told us the last month how the soldiers have been kicking and pushing them, as well as pointing their machinegun towards the arrested person. Often children are watching, and in one incident this summer the parents had to get the doctor to come over the next day to talk to the children, who had gone into a state of shock.
We are informed that some young people were arrested at the check point. What happened? Why were those people arrested?
Yes, there have been few arrests atleast about 25 people are in prison today, but not all of them were arrested at the checkpoint, some of them as said above that they were arrested from their homes, and those who were arrested on the checkpoint usually they are being told that their permits are not valid or have expired.
How is working life going on? Do farmers manage to reach their harvest?
Working life is difficult – the unemployment figures in Jayyous have reached 80 %. Only 120 persons hold a permit to get access to their land inside the seam zone – the equivalent of approximately 10 % of the total number of landowning families. The number of permits that are issued has been decreasing. The reason for the decline is usually the one word: “security”.
Some of the permit holders are either women or very old men who need to have other adults accompany them, which is impossible if they do not have permits. Therefore the number of permits that can be used is even lower than 120. There are about 3000 people living in Jayyous, and their main income is farming. When only 10% gets a permit from the Israeli authority, it creates a lot of economic as well as social problems.
Is it manageable to arrive in Qalqilya, the town where you all study?
Currently the usual road that the Jayyousi people use to Qalqilya has been closed, and also the main road from Azzun usually used nearby villages to Qalqilya is also closed, so it is not easy to go to Qalqilya people have to now take a long road which take more time.
However, it is possible to get to Qalqilya if you come from Jerusalem– either by taking a bus (number 18) from Jerusalem to Ramallah and then a “service” from Ramallah to Qalqilya. You can also take a taxi or rent a car and driver here by yourself if you wish. Another way to get here is by taking a bus or taxi from Tel Aviv to Qalqilya, walking across the green line and then taking another taxi (ordered in advance) into Qalqilya.
Are internationals going to be in your town for the olives harvest that is soon to come? How does it usually function?
As far as we know there will be internationals in Jayyous for the harvest – we know that at least some of the Ecumenical Accompaniersstatione-d in Jayyous and people from Humans Without Borders (formerly known as The Olive Tree Movement) are planning to take part in the olive harvesting.
These organizations come to the village every year during the harvest time
These few questions to refer of the situation in your area, feel free to add considerations and everything you think it’s important to tell.
Most of the students who live in Jayyous are affected by the wall; as a result they are forced to quit their studies, but also due to the poor socio-economic standard most young people cannot afford to further their studies. Those who happen to finish their studies they are usually frustrated because there are no employment opportunities for them to pursue their careers; and most them choose to immigrate to outside countries.
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