On February 25 1994, a US-born Israeli settler, Baruch Goldstein walked into the Ibrahimi mosque in Hebron armed with a Galil assault rifle and murdered dozens of Palestinians. The massacre happened during the holy month of Ramadan. Palestinians remember and commemorate this day after 29 Palestinian worshippers were murdered along with hundreds being injured.
It was at this point under the pretext of keeping Palestinians safe that Israel expanded its land grabbing policy.
The Ibrahimi Mosque was forcibly partitioned with settlers being given most of the space and is under full Israeli military rule – a precedent many Palestinians fear the Israeli occupation will one day try to repeat at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The Israelis ordered 520 businesses to close overnight, and they remain closed to this day. Shuhada Street, the main road through town, was later sealed off. “The only way to be on this road is to be an Israeli or a foreigner,” said Al Jazeera’s Alan Fisher. “For Palestinians, this is a no-go area.”