On February 23rd 2014 twenty settlers, led by Baruch Marzel, sat down at two tables covered in food on the side of the Sahleh street, near the Ibrahimi mosque, impeding construction and renovation work on a new shop. Baruch Marzel is the leader of the far right-oriented Jewish National Front party. He claims he was the “right hand man” of assassinated Rabbi Meir Kahane, acting as spokesman for the American rabbi’s Kach organization for ten years, until it was outlawed in Israel and the US as a terrorist organization.
Hebron Rehabilitation Committee has a working permit for the restoration of the shop. The settlers attempted to stop the workers from continuing these renovations. Twenty members of various Israeli forces (border police, civilian police and soldiers) were present to protect the settlers.
One CPTers talked to the owner of the shop and he said “ we have permit to work, and the settlers came and claim it is not a working area”.
As the Palestinian workers decided to resume work, the settlers became furious and tried to stop them again. A Palestinian activist asked one of the soldiers why the settlers were allowed to stop the work, since a permit from the Israeli Civil Administration had been issued, and she replied “the street is a public place!”
Once again, Palestinian men resumed work. More settlers joined in the effort to stop the work, taking photos and video of those involved. In the end, the police and the Palestinian workers, reached an agreement to stop working for one hour until the police could convince the settlers to leave.
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