Israeli army bulldozers ravaged all roads to and from the town, completely isolating it from the outside world.
Bulldozers also dumped huge mounds of dirt across intersections leading to the town, leaving hundreds of motorists stranded on both sides of the roads.
Israeli soldiers manning armoured personnel carriers were seen pointing their heavy machine guns at Palestinian civilians.
“This is a criminal collective punishment,” said Muhammad Sharah, a local citizen. “These ramparts means that no car, not even an ambulance, will be able to reach a hospital. It means the patient will die.”
Local council officials appealed to the international community to protect Palestinian civilians from “Israeli criminality.”
“Here we have an army that is ganging up on a civilian population, this is the situation in our town,” said Dura’s Mayor Muhammad Abu Atwan.
“They have just ravaged the very roads that we only finished building and paving a few weeks ago. This means students can’t go to school and employees can’t reach their jobs. If a person falls ill, he or she won’t be able to reach hospital,” the mayor complained.
“Here we have an army that is ganging up on a civilian population, this is the situation in our town”
Muhammad Abu Atwan,
The Israelis went berserk after a lone Palestinian fighter infiltrated the small settlement of Negohot, 20km west of Hebron on Friday night, killing two settlers and injuring two others.
The fighter was subsequently killed in an exchange of fire with Israeli forces.
Following the incident, Israeli occupation troops shot flares into the sky and launched searches for other fighters in the area.
The Israeli army also imposed a tight curfew on the estimated 30,000 inhabitants of the town, with soldiers threatening through loudspeakers to severely punish Palestinians seen in the streets.
Israeli police and security forces had been on high alert for attacks as Jews marked their New year, Rosh Hashana.
Palestinians regard Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip as legitimate targets as they are built on confiscated Palestinian land.
The international community, too, regards the settlements as illegal under international law.