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Eli Ashkenazi, Haaretz Correspondent, Haaretz and AP, 30 April 2006
On Saturday, 30th April, residents of the West Bank settlement of Maon, located in the southern Hebron Hills, renewed their efforts to prevent Palestinian children from traveling to and from school.
The settlers threw stones and eggs at an Israel Defense Forces jeep accompanying Palestinian children from school to their village of Hirbat Al-Tuwani. Despite the fact that a large police and military force was called to the scene, no arrests were made.
The settlers, along with residents of the nearby outpost of Havat Maon, are involved in an ongoing effort to prevent the passage of children to and from school through settlement property.
The IDF and police provide security jeeps to accompany and protect the children. However, the children’s parents have been attacked on four separate occasions in the past week while trying to facilitate the travel.
On Saturday afternoon, IDF soldiers drove five children home for fear of their being attacked. Next to Maon’s chicken coops, dozens of settler adults and youth ambushed the armored vehicle, surrounding it and pounding it with stones and eggs.
Large police and army forces were called to the scene, but it took close to an hour to clear a path to allow the jeep, with the children, to continue on its way. None of the passengers of the jeep were injured.
While no arrests were made, nine Israeli peace activists, called on by Palestinians for help, were removed from the scene.