Jenin - "My Mother Ran For Help.
A Soldier Shot Her In The Head"

By Justin Huggler in the West Bank
The Independent - London

Abdullah Washai had to watch his 17-year-old brother, Munir, slowly bleed to death. He took several hours to die. A hole had been ripped in his shoulder by a round from an Israeli helicopter.
When the boy's mother, Mariam, ran into the street screaming for help, Mr Washai says, Israeli soldiers shot her dead.
These are typical of the claims of those who have managed to escape the carnage of Jenin refugee camp, the scene of the worst fighting of Israel's onslaught in the West Bank.
The question that was facing Israel yesterday was: what will happen when the full story of what Israel has wreaked in the Jenin camp is revealed?
As the Israeli newspaper Ma'ariv said in an editorial: "We can begin thinking today about the war after the war: the public relations war in the media in which Israel can be expected to be placed in the international defendant's seat, when the television screens around the world become filled with the spectacle of bodies lined up, destroyed houses and crying, distraught relatives."
The Israeli army was claiming last night it had finally taken control of all but a tiny section of Jenin camp. But the stories that have been coming out of Jenin for several days have been horrifying, although it is impossible to verify them because of censorship by the Israeli authorities, who have denied journalists access to the camp.
To reach Mr Washai and his grieving brothers, we had to scramble down a steep, wooded hillside, with the Israeli helicopters clattering overhead. As friends shuffled past to pay their respects, Mr Washai told his story, which cannot be confirmed, in the home of a friend who had taken the family in.
"My brother was shot on Saturday afternoon," he said. "A helicopter round came through the wall. It went into his chest and out through the back of his shoulder. We called for an ambulance, but when it came outside the Israeli soldiers shot at it. It had to go."
The International Red Cross has said Israeli authorities have been refusing to allow ambulances to treat the wounded all over the West Bank, which is a war crime under the Geneva Conventions.
"Munir bled until 10 o'clock that night," Mr Washai continued. "My mother went out into the street screaming for help for him. An Israeli soldier shot her in the head."
At one point he buried his head in his hands and appeared to have difficulty going on. He spent two days in the house with the bodies.
"Then we heard people gathering outside. We went out to try to get an ambulance, and the soldiers took us. They separated my brothers and me from my father. We haven't seen him since. As far as we know, the bodies of my brother and mother are still lying in the camp."
The soldiers held them for some days at a military camp and interrogated them. When they released them, they ordered them to go to Ramani, a Palestinian village near Jenin.
Yesterday afternoon, an ugly rumour was going around the village, where Mr Washai and others who have left the camp were told to go. There is no evidence but the Palestinians were saying bodies were being taken out of Jenin refugee camp in trucks.
Nahum Barnea, a well-known Israeli commentator, wrote in Yedioth Ahronoth yesterday: "A number of discussions were held on this disturbing issue by military officials. The general conclusion was that some way has to be found to move the bodies into Israel. If Israel does not find some way to give them a dignified burial, the bodies will bury Israel."
There were other disturbing claims from those in Ramani. Mohammed al-Sadi told us he was used as a human shield by Israeli soldiers as they advanced through the camp.
"The soldiers smashed their way in through my door and started smashing a hole in the wall of my house so they could get from house to house without going in the street," Mr al-Sadi told us in the mosque, filled with refugees.
"The soldiers made four of us walk in front of their tank as it advanced. There were two of my cousins and another man. Then they took us to a house where the soldiers were inside. They put us outside the front door so if anyone shot we would be shot first."
Ariel Sharon toured an army base near Jenin refugee camp yesterday. "Our wonderful soldiers have to be able to continue this struggle," he said.
However, his Defence Ministry announced late yesterday that troops have pulled out of the West Bank villages of Yatta and Samua, near Jenin, and Qabatya, near Hebron.
*A United Nations agency said yesterday it had protested to Israel about the arrest of a member of staff and 104 students at a technical training centre it runs in Ramallah. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) said: "Incursions into UNRWA installations by Israeli forces and detention of UNRWA trainees and staff is completely unacceptable and contrary to Israel's obligations to guarantee the security of UN staff."

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