Hebden to Hebron - activist Tom’s story

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Activist Tom Woodhead will return to the upper Calder Valley this weekend to relive brutal treatment he says was meted out to him in Israel .

Tom, 29, an International Solidarity Movement volunteer, was deported by Israeli authorities in March after being arrested at a demonstration against Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land in the West Bank.

He will give a talk on Sunday entitled ‘From Hebden to Hebron - Palestine, a personal journey’ at the Good Shepherd Catholic Church, Mytholmroyd, at 7.30pm. All are welcome to attend the talk.

Tom, the son of Steve and JoanWoodhead, who live in Hebden Bridge, spent two weeks in an Israeli prison earlier this year before being deported and is now banned from returning to the country for 10 years.

During his arrest, he said, he was beaten, hooded and hit over the back of the head by Israeli soldiers. “I was put against the wall and someone was playing with their rifle next to my head,” said Tom, who worked for the ISM from October to March and now lives in Bristol. In 2010 he and other activists were cleared of charges of criminal damage after satisfying a jury they had lawful excuse because they were acting to prevent war crimes being carried out.