Swiss observer killed in West Bank

A Swiss TIPH observer is reported to have been killed in a crossfire in the West Bank Keystone Archive

Two international observers - one of whom was Swiss - have been killed in an ambush near the West Bank city of Hebron.

This content was published on March 27, 2002 - 08:32

The observers, serving in the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH), were driving on a bypass road frequently used by Jewish settlers, when their car came under fire on Tuesday.

The TIPH's website reported that the two fatalities were Swiss TIPH observer Catherine Berruex and deputy head of operations Turtug Cengiz Toytunc from Turkey.

TIPH is having a condolences reception today at 10:00 AM.

A monitor who survived the incident said a Palestinian gunman had shot at the car at close range.

He told Israeli radio that the attacker was wearing a Palestinian police force uniform, and had opened fire with a Kalashnikov rifle, even though the car was clearly marked as an observer vehicle.

The Palestinian Authority blamed the attack on the Israeli army.

First foreign victims

It is the first time foreign monitors have been killed since the Palestinian uprising erupted in September 2000.

TIPH is a civil observer mission in the West Bank city of Hebron and consists of members from Switzerland, Denmark, Italy, Norway, Sweden and Turkey.

The incident happened shortly after Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat, had announced he would not attend the Arab League summit in the Lebanese capital, Beirut, this week.

swissinfo with agencies

In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Sort by

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Almost finished... We need to confirm your email address. To complete the subscription process, please click the link in the email we just sent you.

Discover our weekly must-reads for free!

Sign up to get our top stories straight into your mailbox.

The SBC Privacy Policy provides additional information on how your data is processed.