Awarta police officer detained in night raid

An Israeli military patrol car drives through Awarta as the village was under curfew on 14 March 2011. (MaanImages)

Published today (updated) 30/03/2011 14:02


NABLUS (Ma’an) — A 40-year-old policeman was detained by Israeli forces from the village of Awarta overnight Tuesday, a day after dozens were rounded up in connection to a murder investigation involving a settler family from the adjacent Itamar settlement.

In the early days of the investigation, two security officers living in the village were said to have been detained. The village was then put on military lockdown, with a five day curfew. At least 40 were detained during the curfew, who village officials said were fingerprinted and taken for DNA testing.

A second curfew was imposed last week, with several more detained.

Tuesday morning’s detentions saw dozens taken into the custody of Israeli forces.

Police identified the latest man detained from the village of Awarta as Samih Ilias Al-Qadi. An Israeli military spokesman said he could not comment on events in the village.

The investigation of the grisly Itamar murders, which saw five members of the Fogel family stabbed in their beds on March 11, including two children and an infant, was put under gag-order by Israeli officials, and details of the investigation are prohibited in the country’s media.

Israeli political leaders pointed to Palestinian militant groups as the investigation got underway, but no group came forward to claim the killings.

The Itamar settlement and Awarta village are both in Area C, and so under Israeli civil and military control.


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