Israeli forces have maintained a closure of the village of Awarta for the last three days, preventing all residents from leaving their homes, with no indication as to when the closure will end and the residents will be allowed out of their homes. Any person caught leaving their home for any reason has been abducted by Israeli troops.The village closure began soon after the murder of an Israeli family, including a baby and two small children, on Friday night in Itamar settlement, located near the village of Awarta in the northern West Bank.
Since Awarta is the closest village to the settlement, Israeli forces searching for the assailant poured into the village in the early hours of Saturday morning, and have remained in Awarta since that time, searching and ransacking homes and maintaining a strict closure.
Three international non-violent activists with the International Solidarity Movement, Cinda, 23, Chad, 25, from Sweden, and Cissy, 53, from Norway, have been unable to leave the village, and have reported several incidents of soldiers beating local residents in their presence.
The activists also reported that around 100 men were rounded up and held for interrogation at a local school on Monday.
The Israeli army has made no statement as to the identity of the perpetrator of Friday night’s attack, although they have abducted around 30 Palestinians from nearby areas, including Awarta village, for interrogation.