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Israeli Army soldiers came to the entrance of Birzeit University this morning, shooting rubber-coated steel bullets and tear gas on to the campus.
Two people were injured, one visitor to the University who was shot in the shoulder by a rubber-coated steel bullet as he was waiting to enter the University’s main gate, and one Birzeit University student who was shot in the hand after throwing stones at the Army jeep which blocked the entrance to the University. Both were bleeding from superficial wounds and the student with the hand injury could not at first feel his hand. After being treated at the University clinic, they were taken by ambulance to a hospital in Ramallah.
Israeli soldiers frequently block access to Birzeit University, by parking Army vehicles at the University entrance or by stopping cars on the road leading to Birzeit University from Ramallah. In a similar incident 5 weeks ago, on 5 May 2004, Israeli soldiers fired rubber bullets and tear gas on to Birzeit University campus and beat up 3 students trying to leave the campus.
Female Students Body-Searched by Soldiers
On 1 June 2004, one Israeli Army jeep, one humvee and at least 6 Israeli Army soldiers set up a road block stopping students and faculty from Birzeit University trying to get home to Ramallah at the end of the working day.
A faculty member from Birzeit University’s Women’s Studies Center was turned back at the roadblock because she did not have her ID with her, and a number of university students without IDs were turned back or told to sit at the side of the road. Female students not carrying their IDs were body-searched by male soldiers.
One of the soldiers said he was a doctor of medicine at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. When questioned why he was preventing access to and from an educational institution, he refused to answer. A camera crew which happened to be passing started to film the scene and a soldier threatened to arrest them if they did not stop filming.