by Diana Zimmerman and Kim Lamberty | Christian Peacemaker Team | 23 March 2005
For Immediate Release
Sheep are ill and dying on the day following the discovery of poison pellets on the land outside the Palestinian town of At-Tuwani adjacent to the illegal Israeli settlement outpost of Havot Ma'on. Two sheep are dead and others are ill. The amount of sheep affected remains unknown. Palestinians have also found two dead gazelles in the area. Villagers fear that a well has been contaminated. The poisoning is yet another incident in a pattern of attacks in this area.
Early Tuesday morning March 22, a Palestinian shepherd from At-Tuwani discovered poison pellets spread over the hillside outside the town in the South Hebron Hills. The turquoise blue pellets appear to be barley soaked with rodent poison. At least 30 dunams of land is affected and the villagers fear that the poison may be in other areas as well. The Israeli police were called upon discovery of the poison. The villagers were informed by the police that an investigator from the settlement of Ma'on has been assigned to the case.
The village is also concerned about a communal well in the area where the pellets were found. In the past an At-Tuwani well was poisoned with carcasses of dead chickens.
This malicious act not only affects the economic livelihood of the area farmers, it could have grave impact on the wildlife in the area. The local Palestinian people along with international are currently attempting to clean up the contaminated site.
This is yet another incident in a series of attacks and harassment in this a rea. On Saturday March 19 twelve settlers attacked Palestinian farmers. Also on the same day approximately 100 settlers paraded on to Palestinian land dancing and singing while trampling crops. Over the last six months internationals living in the area have been beaten on three separate occasions by settlers from the Havot Ma'on outpost.
Contact: Luna Villota 0546 893 690
Kim Lamberty 0525 157 859
CPT Hebron, West Bank; Telephone 02-222-8485
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