When Christian Peacemaker Teams set up in Hebron/ Al-Khalil in the summer of 1995, among its first contacts were the Abu Haikel family, and the struggles of the families living in Tel Rumeida have featured prominently in our releases over the last eighteen years. Accordingly, to show our readers what this new settlement expansion means, what it means to have more Israeli settlers on Tel Rumeida with more Israeli soldiers to guard them, we will be running releases from our archives on Facebook and our blog in the coming weeks. [Note: Eighteen years later, the headline today would probably read, “Soldiers interfere with delivery of water to family at Tel Rumeida,” and the story would probably specify whether the water trucks were able to make their delivery.]



August 6, 1995


by Wendy Lehman

HEBRON, WEST BANK — The Israeli Defense Force (IDF) detained two members of Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) on July 12 [1995] as they attempted to accompany water trucks to the home of a Palestinian friend.  The home is located near the Jewish settlement of Tel Rumeida in the heart of Hebron.

Settlers had prevented water from reaching the home of Hanni Abu Haikel for more than a week by blocking the road and stoning the vehicles. In response to Haikel’s concerns, CPTers Cliff Kindy and Jeff Heie offered to accompany the water shipments.

IDF soldiers permitted Kindy and Heie to enter the area one at a time, but each was turned back at a later checkpoint. Soldiers then began to question Heie until he asked, “Am I arrested or can I leave?” A soldier replied, “You are not arrested but you cannot leave.”

As the soldiers detained Kindy and Heie, an elderly woman from the settlement walked past and said, “We are going to kill you.”  Later another settler drove up to the scene. Upon refusing to shake Kindy’s hand outstretched in greeting, the settler threatened, “The only way I will deal with you is with a gun!”

After being detained for nearly two hours in the hot sun, both men were taken to the civil (i.e. military) administration in Hebron.  Four investigators questioned Kindy for an hour, although he and Heie refused to answer questions without a lawyer.  While not officially arrested, they were charged with entering a closed military zone and held until 9 p.m.


© 2015 With love from Hebron.
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