Icon of the popular resistance..from the seventies, Suleiman Al-Hathlin, who was trampled by the Israeli police?

Hebron- Late on Wednesday, the Palestinian village of Umm al-Khair, in the south of the West Bank, was on a date with a shocking event, which almost claimed the life of one of its most prominent dignitaries and symbols of the popular resistance in Palestine.

An Israeli police force raided the Bedouin village to the east of Yatta town, south of Hebron, claiming to confiscate a car it considers “illegal”, meaning that it is not registered with the Palestinian Authority or the occupation authorities.

For the residents, the car chase was nothing but a pretext to storm the village and terrorize its residents, targeting its symbol, Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin (70 years).

The residents were surprised when an Israeli police truck, supposedly brought to load the confiscated cars, caught Sheikh Suleiman and trampled him.

“Sheikh Suleiman,” as the journalists call him, and the “icon of resistance,” as activists call him, is not an ordinary citizen. He does not lose sight of any activity to reject settlement and occupation in the West Bank, especially in the south of the West Bank and in the vicinity of his village, where settlements are advancing.

Al-Hathaleen sustained serious head injuries, after which he was admitted to the operating room at the local Al-Mizan Hospital. He underwent a surgery that lasted several hours, which ended with stopping a bloody brain hemorrhage. He also sustained bruises and fractures throughout his body. The doctors preferred to deal with them after controlling the bleeding.

Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin after being run over by the Israeli police (communication sites)

Serious injury

Neurologist Dr. Imad Al-Talameh, who directly supervised the medical condition of Sheikh Al-Hathlin, says that his health condition is “stable, but his injury is serious.”

And he added in his speech to Al Jazeera Net: “There are damages all over the body, a direct injury to most areas of the head, and we arrived while he was suffering from a brain hemorrhage as a result of a fracture in the front of the skull, which was controlled.”

He also points to fractures in the neck, pelvis and thigh, “but we were able to save his life, and he is being treated aggressively in the intensive care unit.”

deliberate trampling

Ibrahim Al-Hathlin accuses the Israeli police of deliberately running over his brother Suleiman, citing a video tape showing his surprise by the truck.

And he says – in his talk to Al-Jazeera Net – that the occupation police “wanted to take revenge on Hajj Suleiman, whom she knows well, by confronting him in every event.”

The roots of the Al-Hathaleen Bedouin family go back to the “Arad” region in southern Israel, and they were displaced to the West Bank and spread in its eastern slopes, including the areas south of Hebron called “Masafer Yatta.”

permanent presence

Sheikh Suleiman records his permanent presence in popular events wearing a white hat (head covering) hanging over his shoulders, hiding behind him gray hair, after decades of fighting the occupation, and in his hand he leans on his stick and waves it in popular demonstrations and events, along with the flag of Palestine.

Wherever a man settles, the Bedouin dialect becomes apparent, and the non-Bedouin listener needs to repeat it in order to understand it, but he nevertheless keeps the imprint of a special chant that he repeats wherever he was:

Activist Fouad Al-Amour, coordinator of the Protection and Resilience Committees, south of Hebron, describes Hajj Suleiman as “an icon of the traveler of Yatta and the southern regions in a complete, public and nationwide way.”

He added in his speech to Al Jazeera Net, “It cannot be described in the stages of challenge and steadfastness. He is a great icon, and we consider him the first torch at the level of the nation,” and considers that “targeting Hajj Suleiman directly is in order to break the Palestinian thorn.”

In every event or demonstration in which Al-Hathaleen participates, the journalists find him at the forefront standing up to the soldiers and their military mechanisms, but this time the media was absent from recording the event, so the police truck surprised him and ran over him, as his brother Ibrahim says.

One of the issues that the injured Al-Hathalin interacted with was the issue of prisoners, the latest of which was the strike of the prisoner Hisham Abu Hawash, who suspended his strike on Tuesday, as he was present at a solidarity stand with him that took place in the city of Hebron, on the day of his victory.

Since the news of his trampling was confirmed, Sheikh Suleiman has turned into an icon, and the news has spread widely in the media and social networks, with a request to go to God Almighty in prayer to grant him recovery.

The Karmiel settlement is separated only by barbed wire from the house of Sheikh Suleiman Al-HathlinThe Karmiel settlement is separated only by barbed wire from the house of Sheikh Suleiman (Al-Jazeera)

bad neighbors

Sheikh Suleiman was born in a primitive tent on land his father bought before the occupation of the West Bank in 1967, as the occupation does not allow any change in the reality that existed in the village before its occupation, but carried out more than 15 demolitions, the effects of which are still present today.

Haj Suleiman and his relatives did not stop at the pursuit of demolition and the prevention of construction, but the tragedy took on another dimension, starting in 1982 to build a settlement that was separated from his tent only by barbed wire.

Today, the settlement has expanded to the west, south and north to devour more land, while he cannot add any construction, forcing his sons and others to leave and search for a place where they can build and live.

Sheikh of resistance

The Secretary-General of the National Initiative, Mustafa Al-Barghouti, wrote on his Facebook page: “The stubborn sheikh… the sheikh of the popular resistance in Masafer Yatta… Haji Suleiman Al-Hathlin, is lying on the recovery bed after being run over by a car belonging to the occupation police and his fascist army… Your prayers for him to recover.”

Journalist Muhammad al-Qiq wrote on his Facebook account: “The guardian of Umm al-Khair, its olives, its mountains and its waters, the supporter of the prisoners and the prisoners. Sheikh Suleiman al-Hathlin keeps their maps of their malice and confronts their racism. The nation is unable to name a title for you. Oh God, heal and take care of their cunning, O God.”

For his part, journalist Raed Al-Sharif also wrote on his account: “The news of Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin’s injury struck me like a thunderbolt. A man I love and he loves me, I have known him for a long time, come back, Sheikh Suleiman, and rise again, the Hebron mountains need your pride and dignity, and your words that (which) are impossible.” We forget it, God is great, praise be to God.”

As journalist Montaser Nassar wrote on his Facebook account: “The strong steel, the most smelly mountain, the icon of steadfastness and defiance, our father and the father of all, Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin, may God bless you and restore you to your family and country safe and sound. The country needs people like you, please do not hurry to leave.”

And Palestinian government spokesman Ibrahim Melhem published pictures of these two people at several stands, and wrote on his official account on Facebook: “Yatta / the terrorism of the occupation affects Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin, after he was run over by an occupying military vehicle.”

As for Kayed al-Fosfus, the prisoner released after a strike that lasted 131 days, he wrote on his Twitter account: “A speedy recovery to the fighter Sheikh Suleiman Al-Hathlin, who was subjected to a cowardly attack by settlers, a supporter of prisoners and prisoners, and a guard of land and homeland.”

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