Support #BDS: AIPAC Seeks to Imprison Americans for Opposition to israel

AIPAC Seeks to Imprison Americans for Opposition to Israel

Seldom does an agent for a foreign country dare to push legislation that in effect would prohibit constitutional protections to exercise lawful defiance. Before undertaking a scrutiny of this tragic abuse of legislation, one needs to understand the malevolent nature of AIPAC. Examine the article, AIPAC Zionists – the Archenemy of the American Nation for a detailed analysis of the fifth column that operates with impunity on our very shores. If you are concerned about collusion into our elections by a foreign power, look no further than the strings pulled on Congressional representatives, who are toadies for the state of Israel.

 

Glenn Greenwald from The Intercept provides a compelling case that U.S. Lawmakers Seek to Criminally Outlaw Support for Boycott Campaign Against Israel. This is a most important essay because it provides irrefutable evidence of the methods that AIPAC uses to shape the “PC” orthodox culture and control Congressional legislation for the sole purpose of protecting the Zionist regime.

 

Greenwald writes on this treasonous legislation. “The proposed measure, called the Israel Anti-Boycott Act (S. 720), was introduced by Cardin on March 23. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency reports that the bill “was drafted with the assistance of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.” Indeed, AIPAC, in its 2017 lobbying agenda, identified passage of this bill as one of its top lobbying priorities for the year:”

 

Criminalizing the expression of protected free speech and the righteous dissent of political expression against a foreign government, which is a permanent constitutional Bill of Rights safeguard, because extreme Jewish Zionists maintain their loyalty to Israel above the natural rights of all Americans; is obscenely offensive.

 

When the ACLU objects to this proposed statute being pushed by Israel-First zealots, the normally reliable pro Zionists signifies that the assault on civil liberties must be so egregious that resistance to the Reign of Terror from AIPAC must be recognized. Read the ACLU letter to the 45 senators support bill that makes boycotting Israel a crime, urging them to Oppose S. 720 – Israel Anti-Boycott Act.

 

The essential aspects that have alarming consequence from this S. 720 legislation follow as cited in The Intercept essay.

 

 

Greenwald reveals just how sneaky the AIPAC lobbying operates to deceive the bootlick Senators who would never dare to defy the Israel Lobby. Read carefully the sources used to create a perverted linkage of previous laws in their disgusting attempt to circumvent the constitution in order to criminalize behavior that opposes the Khazars rogue apartheid state of Israel.  

 

“But as the ACLU put it, “Violations would be subject to a minimum civil penalty of $250,000 and a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years in prison.”

That’s because, as Josh Ruebner expertly detailed when the bill was first unveiled, “the bill seeks to amend two laws — the Export Administration Act of 1979 and the Export-Import Bank Act of 1945,” and “the potential penalties for violating this bill are steep: a minimum $250,000 civil penalty and a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years imprisonment, as stipulated in the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.”

Indeed, to see how serious the penalties are, and how clear it is that those penalties are imposed by this bill, one can just compare the bill’s text in Section 8(a), which provides that violators will be “fined in accordance with Section 206 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1705),” to the penalty provisions of that law, which state:”

Both the ACLU and The Intercept have a reputation of being left leaning. There is no such proclivity from the Daily Stormer.  Drunk on Their Own Kool Aid, Jews Protest Themselves at AIPAC, cites a report in the Jerusalem Post, “Protesters bore a banner saying: “Jews won’t be free until Palestinians are, reject AIPAC, reject occupation.”

Azzmador, the author of the Daily Stormer article contends.

“Jews are just crotchety people with no sense of humor whatsoever, that’s why they’re always protesting something, and if the gentiles have not done something worthy of marching and shrieking about on any given day (excluding Shabbos, of course) they will march against themselves.

 

You see, the Jews are the most hated group of people in history for a reason, and no one knows this better than other Jews, thus, they hate themselves. They hate themselves so much that they even have Knesset members (the Israeli version of a congressman) come to America to protest their own country, whatever sense that makes.” 

Wow, contention in the ranks of Israelis? Guess they may need AIPAC to set up their own versions in Tel Aviv. Watch the video, AIPAC 101 for U.S. appeal used to convince naive Americans that supporting Israel is in the best interests of our own country. As the factual evidence proves, formulating American foreign policy to advance Israel has demonstrated that a state of permanent war is a direct result from allowing Zionists to write or vote on our legislation.

 

Bipartisan consensus in Congress always bows to Jewish demands.

Study the Philip Weiss essay: The Role of Jewish Democrats in Bill That Could Imprison Israel Boycotters for 20 Years

Nevertheless, reading the text of S. 720 goes too far for any objective participant in the legislative process.

When The Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement originated some twelve years ago, their mission was stated as to end international support for Israel’s oppression of Palestinians and pressure Israel to comply with international law.

Today, Eric Levitz over at New York Magazine outlines the evolution of opposition to Israeli illegal occupation of the West Bank.

“The state of Israel maintains a military occupation of territories that were assigned to Palestinians by international law. Palestinian residents of the occupied West Bank are subjected to the discriminatory rule of a foreign army, while their Israeli neighbors enjoy the full rights of citizenship — a situation that many former Israeli officials have likened to South African apartheid.

 

The United Nations has repeatedly held that Israel’s maintenance — and expansion — of settlements in the occupied West Bank constitutes a violation of international law. Nevertheless, the occupation persists, as it has for half a century. At present, there is no discernible, diplomatic path for bringing it to an end.

In light of these facts, some American citizens and businesses have decided to avoid purchasing goods that are produced by Israeli companies in the West Bank, in the hope that such a boycott might nudge the Jewish state into compliance with international law. Others avoid conducting business with entities located anywhere in Israel for similar reasons.”

As no fan of the UN, the operative standard is that international law cannot be ignored with the passage of punitive criminal punishments to Americans, who refuse to buy or sell with Shekel Shysters.

From the UK perspective, author William Eichler acknowledges in Banning boycotts: is history repeating itself?

“The Israel/Palestine conflict is, in a sense, an anachronism. Zionism—Jewish nationalism—was the movement of self-determination for the Jewish people. However, it could only be realised through the colonisation of territory that was (largely) populated by non-Jews. Furthermore, this could only happen with the help of the British empire which occupied huge swaths of the Middle East in the aftermath of the First World War.”

Nowadays that complicity flows from the U.S. government. As long as bribes and targeted removal from office from the pro Israel lobby occupies the inner greed and fears of the political class, America will never free herself from the furthermost betrayer of true national interest.

The rejuvenation of the NeoCons in a Jared “Kosher” Kushner Trump administration lends itself for begging to the Wailing Wall. The NeoLibs are no different in their acquiescence to Talmud demands.

Ignoring this AIPAC initiative for placing Americans of conscience in the Judaistic crosshairs is an outrage of biblical proportions. Interested parties do not have to join this boycott movement to vigorously oppose the effort of making criminals for expressing their free speech rights.

As the decades fly by the evil that people do intensifies. The government of Israel has clearly demonstrated that humanity outside the tribe perceives their rule as The Synagogue of Satan. Yet, the prospects of Congress opposing this destructive Zionist culture are remote. Requiring AIPAC compliance with the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) would be a start, but before this would happen, a sea change would need to occur in society.

Imagine the nefarious transgressions that the “so called” dual loyalists commit as they implement their Israel-First pressure on our representatives. Greenwald released the Snowden revelations. The Intercept now publishes a sober warning that must not be dismissed.

Envision a real independent special counsel investigation into AIPAC. Such a fantasy would cause the fake news presstitutes to formulate a sequel to their outrage used against those anti-Semitic holocaust deniers.

Protecting Israel is the prime objective for AIPAC. America’s best interests are routinely shredded. The goy are treated as useful idiots. So why should we be shocked that AIPAC wants to make a place in concentration camps for those who reject their political reign of terror.

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism against the State of Palestine

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestine Territory

Israeli forces continue systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)

(20 – 26 July 2017)

 

  • Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children, in the West Bank.
  • A child was killed after a suspicious object from the Israeli forces’ remnants exploded in Tubas.
  • 259 Palestinian civilians, including 8 children and 2 paramedics, were wounded in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
  • 221 civilians were wounded in Jerusalem and its suburbs, 19 were wounded in the West Bank and 19 others were wounded in the Gaza Strip.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the Gaza Strip border areas with no casualties reported.
  • A checkpoint belonging to the Palestinian armed groups in the central Gaza Strip, causing material damages to the checkpoint and a nearby house.
  • Israeli forces conducted 81 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 3 limited ones in the Gaza Strip.
  • 128 civilians, including 14 children and 4 women, were arrested.
  • 51 of them, including 5 children and a woman, were arrested in Jerusalem.
  • Among those arrested was a Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) Member and Former Finance Minister, Dr. ‘Omer ‘Abdel Razeq.
  • Israeli forces continued efforts to create Jewish majority in occupied Palestinian Jerusalem.
  • Israeli forces continue to escalate their arbitrary measures against al-Aqsa Mosque.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea.
  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 10th
  • Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
  • 11 civilians, including a child and girl, were arrested at military checkpoints in the West Bank.
  • Among those arrested was writer Sa’id Media and activist ‘Abdullah Abu Rahmah.

 

 

Summary

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (20 – 26 July 2017).

 

Shooting:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children, in the West Bank while a third child was killed due to the explosion of a suspicious object from the Israeli forces’ remnants. Moreover, Israeli forces wounded 259 Palestinian civilians, including 8 children and 2 paramedics, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Two hundred and twenty one of them were in Jerusalem; 19 were in the West Bank while 19 others, including a child and 2 paramedics, were wounded in the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile, Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip continued to chase the Palestinian fishermen in the sea and to open fire at farmers in the border areas.

In the West Bank, on 14 July 2017, in excessive use of force, Israeli forces killed Mohammed al-Teneh (24) from Taqou’a village, east of Bethlehem, after he was shot near the northern entrance to the village.  The Israeli forces claimed that al-Teneh attempted to carry out a stab attack, but eyewitnesses in the scene emphasized they did not see any sharp tool beside his body lying on the ground.

 

Following the Friday prayer, 21 July 2017, most of occupied East Jerusalem’s neighbourhoods and villages witnessed violent clashes between the worshippers and Israeli soldiers.  Those clashes continued until the afternoon, resulting in the killing of 3 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children; one of whom was shot dead by an Israeli settler.  In Ras al-‘Amoud neighbourhood, east of the City, Mohammed Sharaf (17) was shot dead when a settler opened fire at him.  Sharaf was hit with 2 bullets to his neck.  In al-Tur neighbourhood, east of the City as well, Mohammed Abu Ghannam (20) was shot dead when Israeli soldiers opened fire at him from a close distance, wounding him to the chest and heart.  In Abu Dis, east of the City, Mohammed Lafi (17) was hit with bullets to his chest, one of which directly hit his heart.

 

In the same context, on 22 July 2017, ‘Oday Nawaj’ah, from Yata, south of Hebron, was killed after a suspicious object exploded from the Israeli forces’ remnants in Bzeiq area, northeast of Tubas, while grazing his sheep.  It should be mentioned the abovementioned area witnessed many similar incidents as the Israeli forces is used to conducting military trainings there.

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces wounded 240 Palestinian civilians, including 6 children; 221 were wounded in occupied Jerusalem, while the others were wounded in the West Bank.  They were directly wounded with bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters.

 

In the Gaza Strip, the border area witnessed peaceful protests against the illegal closure imposed on the Gaza Strip. Israeli forces used force against the protestors. As a result, 19 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children and 2 paramedics, were wounded. Two of them were hit with live bullets and 17 were directly hit tear gas canisters and sound bombs.

 

In the context of opening fire at the border area, on 23 July 2017, Israeli forces fired two artillery shells at a checkpoint belonging to the Palestinian armed groups, southeast of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip.  As a result, the checkpoint and a nearby house sustained damages.

 

On 26 July 2017, Israeli forces stationed east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at the area adjacent to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel.  Neither casualties nor damages were reported.

 

Concerning attacks on fishermen, on 24 July 2017, Israeli gunboats sporadically opened fire at the Palestinian fishermen, northwest of Beit Lahia village, north of the Gaza Strip, and chased them. However, neither casualties nor material damage were reported. A similar attack recurred against the Palestinian fishing boats in the same area on 25 and 26 July 2017.

 

Incursions:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 81 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and 8 limited ones in the Gaza Strip. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 128 Palestinian civilians, including 14 children and 4 women. Fifty-one of them, including 5 children and a woman, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem and its suburbs.  Four civilians, including 3 children, were arrested during protests. Among those arrested were PLC Member of the Change and Reform bloc (Hamas) and former Finance Minister, Dr. ‘Omer ‘Abdel Razeq; writer and journalist Mohammed Sa’id Medyah (83) from Halhoul, north of Hebron; and Coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlement, ‘Abdullah Abu Rahmah (46).

 

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces conducted 3 limited incursions.  On 23 July 2017, Israeli forces moved 100 meters into the western side of the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Bureij.  They combed and levelled the area lands before redeploying along the border fence.

 

On 25 July 2017, Israeli forces moved 100 meters into the eastern side of al-Qararah village, northeast of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip.  They levelled and combed areas along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel.

 

On 26 July 2017, Israeli forces moved 100 meters into the south-eastern side of Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip, and levelled and combed areas there.

 

Efforts to create Jewish Majority

For the second week, the Israeli authorities continued to escalate the measures taken against al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem.  Those measures included closing the Mosque; banning prayers; and establishing metal detector gates at its Gates.  On Sunday morning, 16 July 2017, these authorities established metal detector gates at 9 gates of al-Aqsa; 5 were in the yard of the Lions’ Gate “al-Asbat”, 2 in the Council Gate “al-Majles”, and 2 in the Chain Gate “al-Silselah”.  Meanwhile, the Gates of Remission “Huttah”, King Faisal, Bani Ghanim “al-Ghawanmah”, Iron “al-Hdaid”, Ablution “al-Mutaharah”, and Cotton Merchants “al-Qattanin” are so far closed.  Since then, the Palestinian worshippers has refused to enter al-Aqsa Mosque through these detector gates and started performing prayers in the yards at the entrances to the Noble Sanctuary.  Despite the demands to remove these gates, the Israeli Cabinet in the Israeli government decided in its meeting on Thursday, 20 July 2017, to maintain these detector gates; amass more forces to Jerusalem, its surroundings and al-Aqsa Mosque; impose a tightened closure on Jerusalem; and close all roads and entrances to and from the city.  On 23 July 2017, Israeli forces installed surveillance cameras, overhead metal brdiges and railings at the entrances to the Lion’s Gate in addition to the metal detectors.  On 25 July 2017, the Israeli forces removed the metal detectors and declared its intention to remove all the cameras, overhead bridges and surveillances cameras installed in the previous days at al-Aqsa Mosque entrances to restore the situation before 14 July.

 

Restrictions on movement:

 

Israel continued to impose a tight closure of the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

 

The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip, which has been steadily tightened since June 2007 has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.  The Israeli authorities impose measures to undermine the freedom of trade, including the basic needs for the Gaza Strip population and the agricultural and industrial products to be exported. For 9 consecutive years, Israel has tightened the land and naval closure to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, and other countries around the world. This resulted in grave violations of the economic, social and cultural rights and a deterioration of living conditions for 2 million people.  The Israeli authorities have established Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shaloum) as the sole crossing for imports and exports in order to exercise its control over the Gaza Strip’s economy.  They also aim at imposing a complete ban on the Gaza Strip’s exports. The Israeli closure raised the rate of poverty to 65%. Moreover, the rate of unemployment increased up to 47% and youth constitutes 65% of the unemployed persons.  Moreover, 80% of the Gaza Strip population depends on international aid to secure their minimum daily needs. These rates indicate the unprecedented economic deterioration in the Gaza Strip.

 

In the West Bank, Israeli forces continued to suffocate the Palestinian cities and village by imposing military checkpoints around and/or between them. This created “cantons” isolated from each other that hinders the movement of civilians. Moreover, the Palestinian civilians suffering aggravated because of the annexation wall and checkpoints erected on daily basis to catch Palestinians.

 

Details

 

  1. Incursions into Palestinian Areas, and Attacks on Palestinian Civilians and Property in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip

 

Thursday, 20 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Ethna village, west of Hebron, and stationed in the western area. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Abed al-Rasoul Bashir (28) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Fawar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ibrahim ‘Ali al-Husaini (22).

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into the southern area in Hebron, and stationed in al-Ja’bari neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Hamzah Sami Eshaq al-Ja’bari (22) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Salem village, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested Mohammed Mustafa Hamdan Salem (22).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Yatta, south of Hebron, and stationed in Roq’ah area, west of the city. They raided and searched 2 houses belonging to Saddam Majed Zain (38) and Abdul Karim Nayef Zain (28) and then arrested them. They also raided and searched a lathe workshop belonging to Zain family and confiscated some machines from it.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Deir Sharaf village, northwest of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Ward Netham ‘Antari (20).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Saida village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested Mo’men Nawaf Raddad (25).

 

  • At approximately 13:40, in a new crime of excessive use of force, Israeli forces killed Mohammed Husain al-Teneh (24) from Taqou’ village, east of Bethlehem after shooting him near the northern entrance to the village. They claimed that Mohammed attempted to carry out a stab attack, but eyewitnesses, who were in the area, confirmed that they did not see any sharp tool on the ground. The soldiers attempted to prevent the village residents from reaching Mohammed by firing live bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters in the air. Mohammed’s body was taken to an Israeli jeep. Photos taken of the body, showed that Mohammed sustained several live bullet wounds to the head and chest as part of the brain was on the ground.

 

  • At approximately 23:15, Israeli forces moved into Rafat village, west of Salfit. They raided and searched a house belonging to Anas Khaled Sharif ‘Ayash (22) and then arrested him.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (6) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Kharas, Taffouh, al-Thaheriyah, Deir al-‘Asal and Deir Samet villages in Hebron, and ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyah.

 

Friday, 21 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces accompanied with 12 military jeeps moved into Taqou’, east of Bethlehem, from the northern and western entrances, and then stationed in al-Sabah, al-‘Amour, Al-Teneh and al-Deir neighborhoods. They raided and searched a house belonging to the family of Mohammed Husain al-Teneh, who was killed at the northern entrance to the villages in the previous day. The soldiers ripped off Mohammed’s photos and damaged the contents of the condolences house. They also handed the family a threat notice signed by Israeli forces ordering them” not to commit any terrorist acts which violate the law”. Moreover, the soldiers raided and searched a house belonging to Mahmoud Mohammed al-‘Amour and withdrew in the morning, but no arrests were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Hebron, Dura, Qalqas and Beit Ummer villages in Hebron.

 

Saturday, 22 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’ village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mahmoud Husain al-‘Amour (25) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into Jenin. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Abdul Salam Jamal Abu al-Haijaa’ (36) and Ghassan Abdul Wahab Zaghibi (44).

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Dura, Beit Awla and al-Burj villages in Hebron.

 

Sunday, 23  July 2017

 

  • At approximately 00:00, Israeli forces accompanied with 4 military bulldozers moved about 100 meters into the west of the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Buraij in the central Gaza Strip. They leveled the lands adjacent to the abovementioned border fence. The incursion continued for 3 hours after which the Israeli forces redeployed along the border fence.

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into several neighborhoods in Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested 5 civilians namely Nedal Mohammed Abu Suneinah (44), Hazem Mohammed Zablah (32), Mohammed Salah Bader (38), Ahmed ‘Ali al-‘Oweiwi (24) and Nouh Yusri al-Hashlamoun (28).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to ‘Arafat ‘Essa al-Za’aqiq, and Mohammed Moneer Redwan Ekhleil (37) and then arrested them.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli moved into Ethna villages, west of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Isma’il Talab Ahmed Natlah (37) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Jamil Ya’qoub Salamah Qamsiyah (75) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Nablus. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Omer Abdul Rahim al-Hanbali (46) and Nidal ‘Ali Abu Ramilah (45).

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Ourta village, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested ‘Ali As’ad Laulah (34).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Madama village, south of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested Mahmoud Wajih Kamel Qet (23).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces accompanied with 15 military jeeps and an infantry forrce moved into Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested 5 civilians namely Mos’ab Omer ‘Atiyah (21), his brother Mo’ath (25), Mohammed Bilal Farij (28), Abdul Naser ‘Ali al-Rabi (45) and Mohammed Hashem Abu Khader (45). It should be noted that last three civilians were former prisoners and released before only a short period.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Halhoul and stationed in al-Tharwah area. They raided and searched a house belonging to ‘Ali Abdul Mohsen Zama’arah (33) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Walid Khader Salah (27) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Tubas. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Ashraf Mustafa Daraghmah (38).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Salfit. They raided and searched a house belonging to Dr. Omer Abdul Razeq Matar (53), a PLC Member representing the Change and Reform Bloc of Hamas Movement and former Minister of Finance in the tenth Palestinian government, and then arrested him. At approximately 06:00, they withdrew taking him to an unknown destination. It should be noted that Matar was arrested 6 times before by the Israeli forces and served 7 years in prison; the last of which was for 9 months.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Hendazah area, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Nader Khader Mohammed ‘Obeidullah and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Jenin. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Khaled Mohammed Amin al-Haj (50).

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Arouj village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ja’far Abdullah al-‘Arouj (24) after which they arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli forces moved into Sa’ir village, east of Hebron, and stationed in al-Kawazbeh area. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yunis Ahmed Kawazbeh (55) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 17:30, Hekmat Jawdat Sa’id Hamed (26), from Furoush Beit Dagan village adjacent to al-Hamra checkpoint in the central Jordanian Valley, was driving his car on the main street. An Israeli military jeep chased him, so he fled away to the agricultural lands. The soldiers chased him and ordered him to stop, but he did not respond. When he travelled away from them, he left the car and ran away. The soldiers continued to chase him, and one of them opened fire at him.  As a result, he was hit with live bullet to the right foot. The soldiers took him to al-Hamrah checkpoint. In the meantime, an ambulance of Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) arrived from the center of Tubas and offered first aid to Hekmat at the abovementioned checkpoint. The Israeli forces did not allow the ambulance crews to evacuate him from the area until approximately 19:30, as he was arrested from the ambulance and taken to “Jadi” military camp in al-Jiftlik. At approximately 20:30 on the same day, The Israeli forces coordinated with the Palestinian Military Liaison to hand over the wounded civilian and transfer him to a Palestinian hospital.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: al-Samoa’ and Surif villages in Hebron; Howarah and Beta villages in Hebron, and Kafer al-Deek village, west of Salfit.

 

Monday, 24 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 00:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed ‘Ali ‘Essa (31) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’ village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Husain Mohammed al-‘Amour (17) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces fired 2 artillery shells at a military checkpoint belonging to the Palestinian armed groups, southeast of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip. The shelling caused damage to the targeted checkpoint in addition to a house belonging to Mervat Mohammed al-Wazir. The house, which sustained partial damage, is about 70 meters to the east of the abovementioned checkpoint. Moreover, the house inhabitants panicked.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Abu Katilah neighborhood in the southern area in Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdullah ‘Ali al-Junaidi (30) and handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Nablus to carry out an arrest campaign against Palestinian civilians. A number of youngsters gathered and threw stones at the Israeli forces, who immediately fired tear gas canisters, sound bombs and metal bullets at them. As a result, a 17-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the lower jaw and was taken to Rafidia Governmental Hospital to receive medical treatment. Moreover, they raided and searched several houses on al-Sekkah Street after which they arrested Hanan Khamis Mustafa Abu Seriyah (50) and her son Khamis ‘Adnan Mohammed Abu Seriyah (19).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Husan village, west of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Mohammed Hamamrah (37) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into al-Dawha village and al-Dheisheh refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Mohannad Fehmi Qawar and Emad ‘Oudah Abu ‘Ajamiyah.

 

  • At approximately 07:00, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Halhoul and Kharsa village in Hebron; and Beta village, southeast of Nablus.

 

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Husan village, west of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested Ibrahim Khaled Hamamrah (17) and Mohammed Ra’ouf Abu Yabes (18)

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Kuber village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested 3 civilians, including a women, namely Ebtesam al-‘Abed (46), mother of Omer al-‘Abed, who was arrested by the Israeli forces and accused of carrying out a stab attack in “Halamish” settlement, ‘Ammar Abdul Men’em Zebar (23) and Soheib al-Barghuthi (20).

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Nablus to carry out an arrest campaign. A number of youngsters gathered and threw stones and Molotov cocktail at the Israeli forces, who immediately fired live and metal bullets and sound bombs at them. As a result, a 16-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the neck, and a 20-year-old civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the right shoulder. The Israeli forces also raided and searched a house belonging to Raja’i Omer al-Qanneh (25) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit Eba village, west of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Khaled Ahmed Abu Namous (26) and the arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’ village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Mousa Mohammed al-‘Amour (17) and ‘Odai ‘Ezzat al-‘Amour (17).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces move into ‘Ein al-sultan refugee camp, west of Jericho. They raided and searched a house belonging to Montaser Mohammed Abu Zaid (18) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Khatib (55) after which they arrested him and his son Mahdi (24).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli force moved into Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Laith Samir Deriyah (17) and ‘Odai Maher Thawabtah (17).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Jenin and its camp. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested 3 civilians namely Ghassan ‘Abed al-Wahab Zaghibi (45), Mohammed ‘Ali Salem Jamahnah (25) and Mohammed Yusuf Manasrah (21). Zaghibi family said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the Israeli forces confiscated aroundNIS 20,000 while searching the house.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Tal village, southwest of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Qatibah Tayseer Mohammed ‘Asidah (20) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Dheisheh refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. they raided and searched a house belonging to Abdul Hadi Akram Mannaa’ (20) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 06:00, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

  • At approximately 07:30, Israeli forces accompanied with several military bulldozers moved about 100 meters into the east of al-Qararah village, northeast of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. The bulldozers leveled the lands adjacent to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The incursion continued for several hours after which the Israeli forces redeployed along the abovementioned border fence.

 

  • At approximately 10:00, Israeli forces arrested Abed Khalil Zedan (22) from al-‘Aroub refugee camp, south of Hebron after he referred to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Beit Awla, Dura and al-Maj villages and Hebron.

 

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Qabatiya village, south of Jenin. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested 3 civilians namely Yusuf Namer Khazimiyah (60), his son ‘Alaa’ (24) and Haitham Ahmed Reda Turkman (22).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Fawar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yaman ‘Ali Khashan (30) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Asker new and old refugee camps, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Hasan Ahmed Qatanani (18) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Oyoun Abu Saif village, south of Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Sabrin Walid Abu Sharar (25) and then arrested her.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Asja village, east of Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Thaer Jehad Abu Sondos (35) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Surif village, northwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Omer Mohammed Ghuneimat (28) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli forces moved into Yatta, south of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Eid Makhamrah (38) and handed him a demolition notice of a room that was left from a 240-square-meter house belonging to his brother Mohammed. The Israeli forces demolished the house on 04 August 2016, claiming that Mohammed’s son carried out a shooting attack in Tel Aviv on 08 July 2017. The demolition notice, which was signed by the Legal Advisor to the Israeli Government, mentioned that the family built and used the 12-square-meter room in violation of the demolition and confiscation orders. He gave the family 72 hours to evacuate the room in order to demolish it. Mohammed Makhamrah said to PCHR’s fieldworker :

“On 04 August 2016, the Israeli authorities demolished my house after they rejected the petition we submitted via the Center for the Defense of the Individual’s Rights “Hamoked”. A 12-sqaure-meter room was not demolished because the digger could not reach it. I moved along with my 7-member family to a rented a house while my brother’s family stayed in their house in the first floor, which cracked due to the demolition. During the winter, the house was flooded due to the cracks, so we built a one-meter wall around the house to prevent the water leakage. We did not use the room that was left. We then were surprised with an Israeli patrol that arrived at the house and they asked us what we were doing and we told him about what happened. On Wednesday, 26 July 2017, an Israeli force arrived at the house and handed us a demolition notice for the wall and room. The house became inadequate for living and if the demolition happened, my brother’s family will become homeless like us.”

 

  • At approximately 07:30, Israeli forces accompanied with 8 military bulldozers moved about 100 meters into the southeastern side of Beit Hanoun village in the northern Gaza Strip. The bulldozers leveled and combed lands that were leveled before amidst Israeli shooting. As a result, the farmers, who were in their lands, left the area fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

  • At approximately 09:15, Israeli forces stationed in military watchtowers, east of al- Shuhadaa’ Cemetery, east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at the area adjacent to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel. As a result, Civilians living in houses near the area, panicked, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

  • At approximately 06:30, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. The shooting sporadically continued until at approximately 11:00. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Dura, al-Koum, Beit Marsam and Sa’ir villages in Hebron, and Barta’ah eastern village, southwest of Jenin.

 

Child was killed Due to Explosion of Suspicious Object from the Israeli Forces’ Remnants

 

  • At approximately 19:00 on Saturday, 22 July 2017, the PRCS was informed of a wounded civilian in Bzaiq area, northeast of Tubas. An ambulance headed to the area, which is a remote area, and found a child under a tree and wounded to the hands and sustained shrapnel wounds to the head and throughout his body, particularly the upper part. The child arrived as a dead body at Tubas Turkish Hospital. The child was identified as ‘Odai ‘Aziz Nawaj’ah (17) from Yatta, south of Hebron. Nawaj’ah lived with his family in Bzaiq plains. He was grazing sheep in the area where he was wounded due to the explosion of a suspicious object from the Israeli forces’ remnants. It should be noted that the Israeli forces is used to training in the abovementioned area and several similar incidents happened before.

 

Demonstrations in protest against the annexation wall and settlement activities

 

  • At approximately 13:45 on Friday afternoon, 21 July 2017, Palestinian civilians and International activists organized a protest in the center of Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way to the eastern entrance of the village in protest against closing that entrance since the beginning of al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. When the protesters approached the entrance, Israeli forces fired metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, a 38-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the back and a 22-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the back too.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer on the same Friday, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized a protest in Bil’in and Ni’lin villages, west of Ramallah; al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of the city, in protest against the annexation wall and settlement activities. Israeli forces forcibly dispersed the protests, firing live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs. They also chased protesters into olive fields and houses. As a result, some of the protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises as Israeli soldiers beat them up.

 

 

Demonstrations Against Israeli procedures in al-Aqsa Mosque:

 

West Bank:

 

  • At approximately 12:00 on Friday, 21 July 2017, dozens of Palestinian residents from Bethlehem and it camps gathered to perform Friday prayer near the military gate established in the annexation wall near Bilal Ben Rabah Mosque, north of the city. At the end of the prayer, they chanted slogans against the Israeli policy aimed to Judaize Jerusalem and the tight security measures imposed around al-Aqsa Mosque. A large number of Israeli soldiers arrived to the area from the security gate and fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors. The protestors threw stones at the soldiers and set fire to tires to deny the Israeli military jeeps and wastewater pumping vehicle access to the area.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer that was performed in al-Husain Ben ‘Ali Stadium in Hebron, the worshippers made their way to al-Zawiyah Gate. There was an Israeli force stationed at the military Checkpoint (56) established on al-Shuhadaa’ Street, which is closed. They threw stones and fireworks at the soldiers, who fired tear gas canisters at them. The young men dispersed and the soldiers chased them between the shops amidst Israeli soldiers’ firing live bullets and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. As a result, a 14-year-old civilian sustained live bullet wound to the left leg, a 19-year-old civilian sustained live bullet wound to the left shoulder, a 16-year-old civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the chest and was hit with a tear gas canister to the back. The soldiers also attacked a number of journalists in al-Tuffah Valley and prevented them from taking photos. Hazem Bader, a photographer at the French Agency, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that Israeli Border Guards attacked him and banned the other journalists from staying in the area. The Israeli forces moved into Hebron Governmental Hospital and fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters around the hospital. Journalist Doaa’ al-Atrash, a reporter at Ma’an News Agency said to PCHR’s fieldworker:

“I was with my colleague Mashour al-Wahwah, a photographer at Wafa News Agency, when something hit my back. Before I turned back, an explosion occurred and it was a sound bomb although I was wearing the Press uniform.  Fortunately, my colleague and I were not wounded.

 

  • Around the same time, Palestinian civilians organized a protest from the center of ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the northern entrance to the village and chanted slogans supporting al-Aqsa Mosque. The Israeli forces stationed at the abovementioned entrance fired metal bullets at the protestors. As a result, a 20-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the left knee. He was taken to Dr. Darwish Nasal Governmental Hospital to receive medical treatment. (PCHR keeps the name of the wounded civilian)

 

  • At approximately 14:15, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a demonstration and made their way towards Howarah checkpoint, south of Nablus in protest against the Israeli measures against al-Aqsa Mosque. When they approached the abovementioned checkpoint, they set fire to tires and threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed there. The soldiers fired live and metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a 23-year-ld civilian was hit with a tear gas canister to the right ankle, a 20-year-old civilian sustained a super-facial live bullet wound to the right foot, a 24-year old civilian was hit with a metal bullet that broke the ribs and a 25-year-old civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the left arm.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, residents of Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, organized a peaceful protest against the Israeli security procedures in Jerusalem after they established metal detectors at the entrances to al-Aqsa Mosque. They approached the entrance to the village where the Israeli forces established a military checkpoint and there was a large force deployed in the area. The protestors threw stones at the soldiers, who fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them and chased them between houses. They also set up ambushes in the area to arrest the protestors. They arrested Mohammed Thyab Sabarnah (19) after they chased him and took him to the checkpoint established at the entrance to the village. They then transferred him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 17:00, dozens of Palestinian civilians made their way from the center of Qalqiliyah towards the northern entrance to the northern checkpoint “Eyal” checkpoint where the Israeli forces ara stationed. When they approached the checkpoint, the Israeli forces fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. They also arrested 3 children namely Khaled Na’el ‘Oudah Nazal (16), Hamzah Yusuf Ja’idi (17) and Yahiya Mohammed Abu Shehab (17).

 

  • At approximately 18:00 on Sunday, 23 July 2017, Palestinian civilians organized a protest from the center of Joyous village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the annexation wall, west of the village, and chanted slogans supporting al-Aqsa Mosque. The Israeli soldiers stationed at the abovementioned wall fired live bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, Mahmoud Mohammed Isma’il Qadoumi (14) sustained 2 live bullet wounds to the left thigh and right leg and was arrested. The PRCS crews were not able to offer medical treatment for him. The civilians, who were in the area, including Mohammed’s father, attempted to offer him first aid. However, a soldier pointed out his weapon at Mohammed’s father and threatened him to move away. Mohammed was arrested and transferred via an Israeli ambulance to an unknown destination. His family was informed later that he underwent a medical surgery in “Meir” Medical Center. The surgery continued from approximately 21:00 on the same day to approximately 05:00 on Monday, 24 July 2017. Moreover, Ahmed Fehmi Salim (60) sustained a metal bullet wound to the right hand.

 

 

Gaza Strip:

 

  • At approximately 14:00 on Friday, 21 July 2017, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Khuza’ah and ‘Abasan al-Kabirah villages, east of Khan Yunis. They set fire to tires and raised Palestinian flags. A number of them approached the abovementioned border fence and threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed there. The Israeli forces fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them to disperse them. As a result, a number of civilians sustained tear gas inhalation.

 

  • At approximately 15:30 on Friday, 14 July 2017, dozens of Palestinian young men made their way to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Buraij in the central Gaza Strip, protesting against the Israeli metal detectors that were established at al-Aqsa Mosque gates. Some of the young men gathered near the security fence, set fire to tires, raised the Palestinian flags and threw stones at the Israeli forces stationed along the abovementioned border fence. The soldiers fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 2 civilians were wounded. The first one was hit with a tear gas canister to the head and the other sustained a live bullet wound to the right leg. (PCHR keeps the names of the wounded civilians).

 

  • At approximately 16:00 on the same Friday, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered few meters away from the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, in response to calls for protests against the Israeli measures in occupied Jerusalem. Some of the young men set fire to tires and threw stones at the Israeli forces stationed along the abovementioned border fence. The soldiers fired live bullets, tear gas canisters and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. The clashes continued until approximately 20:00 on the same day. As a result, 17 civilians, including 2 children and 2 PRCS paramedics, were wounded. One civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the right leg while the other 16 civilians were directly hit with tear gas canister. As a result, the side windows of 2 ambulances belonging to the PRCS and Military Medical Services were broken.  The wounded paramedics were identified as:

 

  1. Mahmoud Yusri ‘Ayesh al-Masri (21), from Beit Hanoun, was hit with a tear gas canister to the nose which was broken as a result.
  2. ‘Alaa’ Abdul Mo’ez Abdul Mo’ati Abu Sh’air (32), from Jabalia, was hit with a tear gas canister to the back.(PCHR keeps the names of the wounded civilians)

 

 

  • At approximately 16:30, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel around Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing, northwest of Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip. A number of them approached the abovementioned borer fence and threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed there. The soldiers fired live bullets and tear gas canisters around the protestors to disperse them. As a result, a number of civilians sustained tear gas inhalation.

 

  1. Continued closure of the oPt

 

Israel continued to impose a tight closure on the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

 

Gaza Strip

 

Israeli forces continuously tighten the closure of the Gaza Strip and close all commercial crossings, making the Karm Abu Salem crossing the sole commercial crossing of the Gaza Strip, although it is not suitable for commercial purposes in terms of its operational capacity and distance from markets.

Israeli forces have continued to apply the policy, which is aimed to tighten the closure on all commercial crossings, by imposing total control over the flow of imports and exports.

 

Israeli forces have continued to impose a total ban on the delivery of raw materials to the Gaza Strip, except for very limited items and quantities. The limited quantities of raw materials allowed into Gaza do not meet the minimal needs of the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.

 

Israeli forces also continued to impose an almost total ban on the Gaza Strip exports, including agricultural and industrial products, except for light-weighted products such as flowers, strawberries, and spices. However, they lately allowed the exportation of some vegetables such as cucumber and tomatoes, furniture and fish.

 

Israel has continued to close the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing for the majority of Palestinian citizens from the Gaza Strip. Israel only allows the movement of a limited number of groups, with many hours of waiting in the majority of cases. Israel has continued to adopt a policy aimed at reducing the number of Palestinian patients allowed to move via the Beit Hanoun crossing to receive medical treatment in hospitals in Israel or in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Israel also continued applying the policy of making certain civilian traveling via the crossing interviewed by the Israeli intelligence service to be questioned, blackmailed or arrested

Israel has imposed a tightened closure on the West Bank. During the reporting period, Israeli forces imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians:

 

  • Hebron: Israeli forces established (23) checkpoints all over the city.

On Thursday, 20 July 2017, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to Ethna village and at the northern entrance to Halhoul village.

On Friday, 21 July 2017, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrance to al-Fawar refugee camp and al-‘Aroub refugee camp; at the southern entrance to Hebron and at the entrance to al-Shayyoukh village. .

On Saturday, 22 July 2017, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrance to al-‘Aroub refugee camp; at the entrances to Deir Razzah and Ethna villages and at the eastern entrance to Dura village.

On Sunday, 23 July 2017, 2 similar checkpoints were established at the southern entrance to Hebron and at the entrance to Beit ‘Aynoun village.

On Monday, 24 July 2017, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the eastern entrance to Dura village, at the entrances to Beit Ummer and Ethna villages and at the entrance to al-Fawar refugee camp.

On Tuesday, 25 July 2017, 5 similar checkpoints were established at the northern entrance to Dura village; at the eastern entrance to Dura village; at the entrances to al-Fawar refugee camp and al-‘Aroub refugee camps and at the entrance to Beit Ummer village.

On Wednesday, 26 July 2017, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the southern entrance to Halhoul village and at the entrance to Sa’ir village.

 

  • Qalqiliyia: Israeli forces established (9) checkpoints all over the city.

At approximately 09:15 on Thursday, 20 July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyia.

On Friday, 21 July 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the eastern entrance to Qalqilyia ( was established twice); and at the entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of the city.

On Saturday, 22 July 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints under the bridge of ‘Azoun village, leading to Jayyous village; between ‘Azoun and Kafur Thulth village; and at the northern entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyia.

At approximately 22:00 on Sunday, 23July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint between ‘Azoun and ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb villages, east of Qalqiliyia

At approximately 03:15 on Monday, 24 July 2017, a similar checkpoint was established at the entrance to Amateen village, northeast of the city.

 

  • Salfit: Israeli forces established (5) checkpoints all over the city.

At approximately 08:40 on Friday, 21 July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Salfit.

At approximately 12:30, a similar checkpoint was established under the bridge of Askaka village, east of the city.

On Saturday, 22 July 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the northern entrance to Salfit; at the entrance to Deir Balout village, west of the city; on the road between Kaful Hares and Hares villages, north of the city.

 

Arrests at military checkpoints:

 

  • At approximately 17:30 on Friday, 21 July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinian vehicles, questioned the passengers and checked their IDs. In the meantime, they arrested Mo’min Hisham ‘Odwan (28) and Husam Yunis Saleem (22).

 

  • At approximately 20:00 on Friday, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the southern entrance to Jenin. They searched Palestinian vehicles, questioned the passengers and checked their IDs. In the meantime, they arrested Abed al-Raheem Fakhri Ghawadrah (21), from Beir al-Basha village, south of the city.

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on Saturday, 22 July 2017, Israel forces stationed at Abu al-Reesh military checkpoint, in the southern area of Hebron, arrested Hazem Mohamed Abed al-Fatah Zablah (17).

 

  • At approximately 14:00 on Saturday, a force of Israeli soldiers stopped a Palestinian vehicle at the entrance to Bani Na’iem village, east of Hebron. They checked the passengers’ IDs and arrested Safa Abdullah Manasrah (23).

 

  • At approximately 19:00 on Sunday, 23 July 2017, Israeli forces arrested the writer and journalist, Mohamed Sa’ied Mohamed Ibrahim Mudiyah (83), from Halhoul city, north of Hebron, while he was in his agricultural land near “Karmei Tsur” settlement, north of the city. Mohamed was then taken to “Kiryat Arba” police station and was released later. Mohamed stated to PCHR’s fieldworker that, “At approximately 18:00, I headed to my agricultural land after I received a call from the Israeli peace activists from the Ta’ayush Movement to photograph the land in order to support its legal defense in the Israeli court. As soon as we arrived at the land, the security officer of the settlement came and yelled at us. He also asked me to show my ID card, but I refused. After that, a number of Israeli soldiers came and the officer took my ID card while other officers quarreled with an Israeli activist until a police vehicle arrived at the area. Few minutes later, the officer asked me why I was here. I told him that I am on my agricultural land and I do not violate the law. He then told me that I am under arrest. I was taken by a military vehicle to a camp near the settlement, where I stayed for about 15 minutes. After that, I was taken to the “Kiryat Arba” police station, east of Hebron. An Israeli Civil Administration officer named Alaa, whom I knew before, came to me and blamed me for going to the land without prior coordination. In the meanwhile, I was taken to the interrogation room and was charged that I entered an area where I was not allowed into. They interrogated me for about half an hour. After that, the officer told me that I was not allowed to enter the land for two weeks, and if I violated the decision, I would pay a fine estimated at NIS 2,000. At approximately 23:30, I was released.”

 

  • At approximately 15:00 on Monday, 24 July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint on Nablus-Tubas road, northeast of Nablus. They stopped Palestinian vehicles and checked passengers IDs. In the meantime, they arrested Moahmed Nidal Mansour (21), while he was returning from his work to his house in al-Far’ah refugee camp, south of Tubas city.

 

  • At approximately 19:00 on Monday, a group of Palestinian young men were present at the entrance to Salem camp, west of Jenin, waiting for the release of a prisoner. In the meantime, Israeli forces arrested Anas al-Ghoul (22), from Jenin camp, west of the city.

 

  • At approximately 20:00 on Monday, Israeli forces stationed at Hawarah military checkpoint, south of Nablus, arrested Ammar Mit’ab al-Tirawi (23), from the city. Eyewitnesses stated that the Israeli forces stopped a vehicle carrying ‘Ammar and ordered him to step out before arresting him.

 

  • At approximately 07:30 on Tuesday, 25 July 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Bi’lin village, west of Ramallah. They stopped Palestinian vehicles and checked passengers’ IDs. In the meantime, the Israeli forces arrested Abdullah Abu Rahma (46) while heading to his work. Abdullah’s brother, Ratib Abu Rahma, stated that the Israeli forces stopped his brother, confiscated his vehicle and then took him to an unknown destination. It should be noted that Abdullah is the Coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Annexation Wall and Settlements.

 

  • At approximately 14:00 on Tuesday, Israeli forces arrested Guevara Ma’an al-Namoura (24), a member of the Yatta Youth Club, from Dura city, southwest of Hebron. He was arrested while passing through a military checkpoint near Taqou’ village, east of Bethlehem.

 

  • Efforts to Create Jewish majority

 

Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it:

 

 

Shooting Incidents:

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Thursday, 20 July 2017, a demonstration started from Jerusalem’s Old City towards al-‘Asbat Gate. Hundreds of Palestinian young men participated in the demonstration to protest at installing metal detectors at al-Aqsa Mosque entrances and performed noon prayer there. They also continued their protest until the evening. Israeli forces attempted to assault the protesters several time and hit them with batons, but the protesters insisted on staying there. Before al-Maghrib prayer, thousands of Palestinian worshipers arrived in the vicinity of al-‘Asbat Gate to perform prayers. Moreover, before al-‘Isha prayer, the Israeli forces fired sound bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at the protesters and forcibly dispersed them. A group of Palestinian young men remained in the area in spite of the indiscriminate suppression against them. As a result, around 79 Palestinian worshipers were pushed and hit and sustained bruises as a result. Mohamed al-Fetyani, a paramedic and the PRCS spokesperson in Jerusalem, stated that the PRCS crews treated around 79 persons, who were exposed to the Israeli suppression at al-‘Asbat Gate between al-Maghrib and al-‘Isha prayers. Forty two of those wounded were treated on the spot while 37 cases were referred to the hospital. Three cases ranged between moderate and serious.

 

  • Following Friday prayer, on 21 July 2017, violent clashes erupted between Palestinian worshipers and Israeli forces in occupied East Jerusalem’s neighbourhoods and villages. The clashes continued until the evening. As a result, 3 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children, were killed. One of the victims was killed by an Israeli settler. PRCS crews stated that around 84 Palestinian civilians were wounded, 11 of them were hit with live bullets and 73 others were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets.

 

  • In Ras al-‘Amoud neighbourhood, east of occupied Jerusalem, thousands of Palestinian worshipers performed the Friday prayer on the street at the entrance to the neighbourhood. Following the prayer, Israeli forces fired sound bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at the worshipers and then dispersed them. Confrontations erupted in the neighbourhood and then reached near the entrance to “Ma’aleh Zeitim” settlement, in the center of Ras al-‘Amoud neighbourhood. According to PCHR’s investigations and eyewitnesses’ statements, an Israeli settler, who lives in the “Ma’aleh Zeitim” settlement, chased a group of Palestinian civilians while he was present at the entrance to the settlement. In the meantime, the Israeli settler topped one of the settlement walls and then opened fire at Mohamed Mahmoud Dawoud Sharaf (17). Mohamed was hit with 2 bullets to the neck. The Palestinian youngsters attempted to help Mohamed, but he succumbed to his wounds before arriving at the medical center. It should be noted that Mohamed has just celebrated his high school (Tawjihi) graduation and was planning to join the university and complete his study.

 

  • In al-Tour neighbourhood, east of occupied Jerusalem, violent clashes erupted between Palestinian worshipers and Israeli forces at the neighborhood intersection. The Israeli forces fired live bullets towards the worshipers. As a result, Mohamed Hasan Abu Ghannam (20) was wounded. Eyewitnesses stated that the Israeli forces opened fire at Mohamed from a close range. Mohamed’s father also said that the bullets penetrated Mohamed’s chest and heart and killed him as a result. After that, Mohamed was taken to al-Maqased Hospital to receive medical treatment. In the meantime, the Israeli forces raided the hospital and heavily fired sound bombs in the hospital yards. They also attempted to arrest Mohamed. When medical sources declared the death of Mohamed, a number of Palestinian young men smuggled his corpse out of the hospital and buried his corpse in al-Tour cemetery. In addition, Mohamed’s mother said that she could not bid farewell to her son because of the Israeli forces, who attempted to take his corpse from the hospital. According to PCHR’s investigations about the killing of Mohamed Abu Ghannam, at approximately 15:00, Mohamed arrived at the emergency department at al-Maqased Hospital. Mohamed was hit with a live bullet to the chest and his health condition was serious. According to medical sources, Mohamed suffered from a severe bleeding and he fell into a coma. Therefore, the medical crew offered first aid to him and tried to revive his heart. It should be noted that the electrocardiogram showed that he was still alive. Twenty minutes later, the medical crew decided to take Mohamed to the surgery’s section, where Mohamed was given blood units. Furthermore, Mohamed was accompanied by three nurses from the emergency department, an anesthesiologist, and another specialist from thoracic surgery.  He was then put on a bed and taken to the corridor leading to the electric elevator. When Mohamed and medical crew arrived at the blood bank, a force of Border Police officers deployed in the corridor leading to the elevator and pointed their firearms at the Palestinian young men gathered in the blood bank. The Border Police officers attempted to deny Mohamed’s bed access to the elevator and during which they attacked a nurse, Raied Ibrahim Mubarak (25), hit him in the neck and pushed him on the ground. The Border Police officers also attacked the doctors and then removed the artificial oxygen device and blood units from Mohamed’s body. After that, a number of Palestinian young men immediately carried Mohamed and quickly took him to the X-ray room to which the doctors followed them. The Palestinian young men closed the door of the X-ray room so that the Border Guard officers would not catch them. The doctors tried to revive his heart, but he succumbed to his wounds.

 

  • Abu Deis village, east of occupied Jerusalem, witnessed violent clashes following the Friday prayer that was performed near Ras Kabsah city. In the evening, Mohamed Mahmoud Lafi (17), was hit with live bullets to the chest and heart. Mohamed was then taken via a PRCS ambulance to Palestine Complex in Ramallah, where medical sources declared his death. It should be noted that Mohamed has just celebrated his High School (Tawjihi) graduation and he was planning to complete his study.

 

  • Wadi al-Jouz neighborhood, east of occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, witnessed violent clashes between hundreds of Palestinian young men and Israeli forces. The Israeli forces fired rubber-coated metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at the protesters. Additionally, the Israeli soldiers sprayed wastewater at the protesters. A group of undercover units also indiscriminately fired live bullets in the area and attacked dozens of youngsters by hitting and pushing them. As a result, the Palestinian youngsters sustained bruises and various wounds. Eyewitnesses stated that the Israeli undercover units raided al-Takrory grocery and a parking lot, where they arrested many persons. Mohamed Mahmoud, a lawyer, stated that the Israeli forces arrested 8 civilians, including a child, from Wadi al-Jouz neighborhood. The arrested persons were identified as Hasan Waheeb Yehia al-‘Ajlouni (15), Sa’d Sa’eed Kayaneih (19), Ibrahim Khalil Abu ‘Arafa (28), Suhaib ‘Adli Abu Sinanah (28), Loai Faraj ‘Eid Jaber (18), Ameer Rafeeq Ghaith (20), Ahmed ‘Adli ‘Ashour (23) and Mo’taz Sa’iadah (23).

 

  • In the afternoon, thousands of Palestinian worshipers performed the Friday prayer on street at Qalandia military checkpoint, north of occupied Jerusalem. They performed the prayer in response to calls from the Ministry of Islamic Endowments (Awqaf), Islamic religious figures and national powers. Israeli forces were widely deployed around the checkpoint and called for backups to deny the worshipers’ access to Jerusalem. Following the Friday prayer, the Israeli forces fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets and sound bombs to disperse the worshipers. As a result, 17 civilians, including 5 children, were wounded. Six of them were hit with live bullets and 11 others were hit with metal bullets.

 

  • On Saturday, 22 July 2017, Israeli soldiers forcibly dispersed thousands of Palestinian worshipers while they were present at al-‘Asbat and al-Majles Gates. The Israeli forces attempted to prevent the worshipers from staying in the area and fired sound bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. They also sprayed wastewater at the worshipers. PRCS stated that around 63 Palestinian civilians were hit with metal bullets in al-‘Asbat Gate area and sustained shrapnel wounds. Moreover, Silwan, al-‘Isawiyia, al-Tour, Wad al-Jouz, al-‘Ezariyia, and Abu Deis villages, in addition to al-Fawar refugee camp and Qalandia refugee camp witnessed clashes between the Israeli forces and Palestinian young men. As a result, 29 civilians were hit with metal bullets.

 

  • On Sunday, 23 July 2017, Israeli forces fired sound bombs at Palestinian worshipers in al-‘Asbat Gate area in order to disperse them. They also arrested Ahmed al-Shawish after hitting him. In the meantime, hundreds of Palestinian worshipers were present in the area and then were able to perform al-Maghrib prayer at Hitah Gate entrance. Outside al-‘Asbat Gate, the Israeli forces fired sound bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at the worshipers following al-‘Isha prayer after forcibly dispersing them.  The Israeli forces then chased the worshipers into Wadi al-Jouz neighborhood. According to PRCS crews, 15 Palestinian civilians were hit with metal bullets, 4 of them were taken to the hospital while the others were treated on the spot.

 

Ongoing Arbitrary Measures against al-Aqsa Mosque:

 

  • On Friday, 21 July 2017, Israeli forces tightly cordoned off al-Aqsa Mosque and occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, in coincidence with the Israeli Cabinet’s decision to keep installing the metal detectors at al-Aqsa Mosque gates. The Israeli forces also erected metal barriers at the intersections of roads adjacent to the Old City. Additionally, they installed metal barriers at the entrance to al-Asbat Gate (Lions Gate) and on the road leading to it. Moreover, the Israeli forces declared in a statement that they imposed restrictions on the Palestinian Muslim worshipers entering Jerusalem’s Old City and al-Aqsa Mosque, as men below 50 are denied access to the Mosque.

Since early morning on the abovementioned day, Israeli forces fixed more barriers at the entrances to villages and neighborhoods in occupied Jerusalem, especially those surrounding the Old City. They erected barriers on all main streets to stop buses driving Muslim worshippers from Israel in order to prevent them from entering Jerusalem. The Israeli police was supported by five Israeli army brigades that were deployed in Jerusalem’s suburbs, besides, military preparedness throughout the West Bank was announced. In response to these updates, the Islamic Endowments (Awqaf) Department issued a decision to close all mosques across occupied Jerusalem and demanded the worshipers to perform the Friday prayer at the al-Aqsa Mosque gates in rejection of the metal detectors. The Islamic leaders and patriot powers called for heading to al-Aqsa Mosque instead of mosques around. As a result, the worshipers gathered and closed the streets during al-Fajr (Dawn) prayer. They did the same during the Friday prayer, as dozens of thousands of Palestinians performed the Friday prayer in occupied Jerusalem. Some of them were able to reach al-Aqsa gates, while the biggest number of them performed the prayer outside the city gates. Wad al-Jouz neighborhood, Saladin Street, Hebron Gate, al-Sowana, al-Amoud (Damascus) Gate and Ras al-Amoud area witnessed prayers performed by tens of thousands.

 

  • On Sunday, 23 July 2017, Israeli forces fixed, in addition to the metal detectors, surveillance cameras, bridges and metal stands at al-Asbat (Lions) Gate. However, the Palestinians continued their sit-ins and prayers at the gates, rejecting the metal detectors. They performed the five prayers at al-Asbat and al-Majles gates’ entrances. Besides, they performed the funeral prayer over a Jerusalemite’s corpse at the entrance to al-Aqsa Mosque as his family refused to enter through the metal detectors. The head of the Israeli municipality toured in al-Asbat area while Israeli officers toured throughout al-Aqsa mosque gates.

 

  • At approximately 01:00 on Tuesday, 25 July 2017, the Israeli authorities dismantled the metal detectors established at al-Asbat, al-Majles, al-Selsela and al-Hadeed Gates, but kept the enclosed metal tunnels at al-Selsela and al-Asbat Gates. They did not also remove the bridge they established at al-Asbat Gate. The Israeli bulldozers levelled the area and removed huge rocks from in there, establishing bridges at all gates of al-Aqsa Mosque, excluding Hetta Gate. The smart cameras will be placed on this bridges. Ofir Gendelman, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesperson, said, “The Security Cabinet has decided to replace the metal detectors with smart and other measures in order to ensure security on the Temple Mount”!!

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on the same day, the Islamic leaders held a meeting in the Shari’a Court’s head office in Jerusalem and issued a statement confirming the “full rejection of all Israeli measures since 14 July 2017 until now”. The Islamic leaders stressed the importance of opening all gates of al-Aqsa Mosque for all worshipers unconditionally. They added that entering al-Aqsa Mosque will be decided about after the technical committees issue their reports to observe what happened inside and outside al-Aqsa Mosque.

 

  • Following al-Isha prayer, on Tuesday, 25 July 2017, the Israeli forces accompanied with mounted police attacked the worshipers gathering at al-Asbat Gate inside and outside the Old City walls in Jerusalem, “calling for stopping all measures the Israeli authorities are trying to impose on the worshippers while entering al-Aqsa Mosque. The Israeli forces forcibly pushed the worshippers away from the area and fired sound bombs. They opened fire as well and chased the worshippers in Wad al-Jouz and at the entrance to Silwan village. Moreover, they fired sound bombs at the medical crews and journalists in the scene and prevented them from performing their duty. As a result, Fatima al-Bakry, a volunteer at al-Aqsa Satellite Channel, sustained sound bomb shrapnel wound as the Israeli forces directly targeted her while covering the clshes at al-Asbat Gate. The Israeli forces also arrested journalist Fayez Abu Rmaila after harshly beating him up. PRCS sources stated that 13 persons were wounded as a result of the Israeli suppression of worshippers with sound bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets. Three of the wounded persons were taken to al-Maqased Hospital in al-Tour neighborhood to receive the necessary medical treatment.

Lawyer Mohammed Mahmoud said that 5 Palestinian were arrested at al-Asbat Gate: journalist Fayez Hamza Abu Ermaila (25), Isaac Dawood al-Natcha (24), Majdi Ahmed al-Atrash (20), Taher Khaled Idris (22) and Hamza Samer Abu Diab (17). Besides, Ahmed Dawood Ewisat was arrested while walking in Ras al-Amoud neighborhood.

 

Arrests and Incursions:

 

  • At approximately 00:00 on Thursday, 20 July 2017, Israeli forces moved into al-Tour neighborhood, east of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Hazem al-Sayyad and arrested his son Ra’ed (12).

 

  • At approximately 02:00 on Thursday, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Issawiyia village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched dozens of houses and arrested 8 civilians, including 5 children. The arrested persons were identified as Anas Ali Abu ‘Asab (16), Qusai Ahmed Dari (16), Nadeem Mohamed al-Safadi (17), Mohamed ‘Izzat ‘Obid (15), Nidal Omar Ghannam al-Faroukh (17), Ahmed Kaiyd Mahmoud (23), Ashraf Jamal ‘Eliyan (19) and Mohamed ‘Esmat ‘Obaid (20).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Sho’fat refugee camp, north of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Mohamed Abdullah Abu Khadir and Hamza ‘Ajaj.

 

  • On Friday, 22 July 2017, Israeli forces carried out an arrest campaign against Jerusalemite activists after raiding their houses. Lawyer Mohamed Mahmoud stated that the Israeli forces arrested Hatem Abdul Qadir, Fateh leader in Jerusalem; and ‘Adnan Ghaith, Secretary of Fatah movement in Jerusalem; Amjad Abu Assab, the head of the Jerusalem Committee for Families of Prisoners; Hani Ghaith; Naser ‘Ajaj; Mousa al-‘Abasi; Mohamed Dawoud Abu al-Hawa; Naser al-Hadami and Zuhair Za’aneen.

 

  • In the evening, Israeli forces arrested 6 civilians from Jerusalem’s Old City. The arrested persons were identified as Mohamed Najeeb, ‘Alaa Najeeb, ‘Obadah Najeeb, Yousef Hazinah, Ibrahim Abu Isninah, and Hamoda Abu Isnienah.

 

  • At approximately 01:00 on Sunday, 23 July 2017, Israeli forces moved into al-Tour neighbourhood, east of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Tamara Mu’amer Abu Laban (17) and arrested her.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched a house belonging to ‘Alaa Mohamed Rowaidy (16) and arrested her.

 

  • At approximately 19:00 on Sunday, Israeli froes arrested Mos’ab Ahmed Abu Ghannam (23) after they ran over him while chasing a group of Palestinian young men on the main street in al-Tour village, east of occupied East Jerusalem. Mufeed Abu Ghannam, Head of the follow-up committee in al-Tour village, said that Mufeed was run over by a military jeep and was then arrested.

 

  • At approximately 01:30 on Monday, 24 July 2017, Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to Mohamed Abu Ghannam on al-Jadeed street in al-Tour village, east of occupied East Jerusalem. Mohamed was shot dead by Israeli forces during clashes erupted in the neighbourhood on Friday, 21 July 2017. They arrested Mohamed’s father, Hasan Abu Ghannam ; and his cousin, Isma’il Abu Ghannam.

 

Israeli settlers’ attacks against Palestinian civilians and property

 

  • At approximately 09:00 on Thursday, 20 July 2017, Israeli forces accompanied by military vehicles and a Israeli Civil Administration vehicle moved into Beit al-Rosh al-Foqa village, west of Dura, southwest of Hebron. An Israeli Civil Administration officer issued 3 notices to halt construction works and hanged them to the walls of 3 under-constructions buildings. He also took photos of the buildings. The notices were issued against houses belonging to 3 siblings from ‘Ashour family. The abovementioned buildings were built in the beginning of the year. In addition, 3 families comprised of 20 persons, including 14 children, were supposed to live there. These notices were issued under the pretext of non-licensing and the Israeli Civil Administration ordered the families to stop construction. Moreover, the Israeli Civil Administration appointed 10 August 2017 to hold a session for the inspection committee in its office in “Beit Eill” settlement, north of Ramallah. The session will be held in order to look in the demolition notice issued against the building and return the place to its previous state.

These notifications were issued to halt construction works in the civilian buildings while the Israeli authorities were constructing a cement wall on the civilians’ lands, west of Hebron and in the vicinity of Beit al-Rosh al-Foqah village and other neighborhoods. The abovementioned buildings belong to:

  1. A 185-square-meter building belongs to Habes Huraiby Abdul Qadir Kashour. It was supposed to shelter 10 persons, including 8 children;
  2. A 120-square-meter building belongs to Saber Huraiby Abdul Qadir Kashour. It was supposed to shelter 6 persons, including 4 children; and
  3. A 120-square-meter building belongs to Ramzy Huraiby Abdul Qadir Kashour. It was supposed to shelter 4 persons, including 2 children.

 

Israeli Settlers’ attacks

 

  • At approximately 00:20 on Sunday, 23 July 2017, a group of Israeli settlers gathered near the entrance to Dersitiyia village, northwest of Salfit, and then withdrew. No more incidents were reported.

 

  • At approximately 01:00 on Sunday, a group of Israeli settlers gathered at the entrance to Kafur al-Deek village, west of Salfit. An Israeli settler fired a live bullet in the air. No more incidents were reported.

 

 

Recommendations to the International Community

 

PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 10 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.

 

  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC in 2017 to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area

Israeli Settlers Celebrate Takeover of Palestinian Home in Hebron (video included)

I’ve posted videos like this before. It seems the typical sort of behavior we often see from Israeli settlers. Even so, it comes as a bit of a jolt every time I come across a video like this. The Abu Rajab family of Hebron is being dispossessed of their three-story home. The settlers shown here have reportedly even begun moving furniture into it–and this apparently is what they’re so happy about,  dancing so joyously over, and making excessively goofy faces into the camera in celebration to…

Zionist Squatters celebrating the forceful at gunpoint take over of a  family’s home in Occupied Hebron. 

A little bit from Ma’an News provides some further insight into the matter:

Residents of the Abu Rajab house, located in the Old City of Hebron near the Ibrahimi Mosque, have been embroiled in a legal battle with Israeli settlers for years, after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared his intention to encourage the establishment of a new illegal Israeli settlement there to be named Beit Hamachpela.

However, Israeli authorities have not granted permission to establish the settlement on the grounds that the settlers have failed to prove their alleged purchase of the Palestinian house, as the Palestinians have accused the settlers of forging the documents.

On Tuesday, settlers escorted by Israeli soldiers had raided the building in an attempt to take it over.

Hazem Abu Rajab al-Tamimi, a resident of the house, told Ma’an that Israeli settlers attempted again to raid the house on Wednesday morning but were thwarted by the Abu Rajab family.

However, the settlers later took over the second and third floors of the building, in addition to raiding the first floor, where the Palestinian family lives.

Al-Tamimi said that Israeli soldiers threatened to detain him and his brothers when they tried to protect their home, as a video shared by NGO Human Rights Defenders showed soldiers manhandling Abu Rajab family members as scores of young Israeli settlers looked on, jeering.

A Ma’an reporter on the scene saw Israeli settlers moving furniture and belongings inside the house under armed protection by Israeli forces, who were deployed around the house, adding that the home had reportedly been turned into a closed military zone.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that they were looking into the case.

Israeli settlers have claimed that they bought the house from its owners, however, the Palestinian owners sued the Israeli settlers in court and accused them of forging documents in an attempt to steal the house, as al-Tamimi said on Wednesday that the settlers’ claims were “pure fabrications and lies.”

The Abu Rajab family home consists of three floors. Al-Tamimi said that the Israeli court decided, due to to ongoing case regarding the house, that no one could enter the second and third floors of the house until a court decision was reached.

The court also decided to keep the house under the “protection” of the Israeli army and the Israeli Civil Administration, he said. Hebrew-language media had meanwhile reported that Netanyahu had appointed coordinators from the Israeli army to negotiate with the settlers and evacuate them.

Al-Tamimi said that the settlers had chosen to ignore the court’s ruling, adding that “they even refuse to apply their prime minister’s decision.”

Meanwhile, over in Bethlehem, Israeli soldiers have basically kidnapped a seven-year-old boy from his father. I don’t know anything about this incident other than what’s in the video below, but watch and you’ll see the father get grabbed himself after protesting the arrest of his son…

Israeli army arrested a 7 years old child in  and assaulted his father when he was trying to save his child from IDF

Chalk it up to another day in the occupation of Palestine, I guess. Keep in mind that both Hebron and Bethlehem are in the West Bank–an area that is recognized under international law as belonging to the Palestinians. What are Israeli soldiers even doing there? They are occupiers, of course. Pure and simple. And every day Israel continues its illegal settlement enterprise is an affront to international human rights law. Moreover, the audacity of the affront is about to become a tad bit more marked.

It has been reported that Elor Azaria, the Israeli soldier who was caught on videotape last year killing a wounded Palestinian with a gunshot to the head, is about to have his sentence lightened to house arrest. Here is what the JTA is reporting:

Azaria, who was convicted in January and sentenced in February, has been confined to the closed Nachshonim military base since being arrested in March 2016. However, the time of his military service ends on Thursday and he must leave the base.

Azaria is appealing his conviction and military prosecutors are appealing his 18-month jail sentence for being too lenient. Azaria does not have to report to prison until his appeals are exhausted.

A military court ruled on Monday that Azaria will go from the army base to house arrest. He will be required to remain at his parents’ home in Ramle in central Israel and can attend Shabbat services in a synagogue on Friday night and Saturday if he is accompanied by a family member.

A military court will rule on the appeals by the end of the month, according to reports.

Azaria shot 21-year-old Abdul Sharif as the latter lay on his back critically wounded on a Hebron street (yes, Hebron, where the Abu Rajab family are now having their home taken over). The incident took place in March of last year, and I put up several posts about it at the time (see here and here for instance). Sharif and a companion allegedly attacked an Israeli soldier. Both were shot. The companion died instantly. Sharif, however, was left in a pool of blood on the street but still alive–until Azaria walked up to him and fired a shot directly into his head.

Little was said about it at first. Only after the video went viral was Azaria even arrested. At first he was charged with murder, but this was subsequently reduced down to manslaughter. He finally was convicted on the latter charge, but as the report above notes, his sentence was very light–only 18 months. And now it’s looking like he will get off with nothing more than house arrest–if he even serves that. For as I noted in a previous post, Azaria is regarded as a hero in Israel.

The U.S. Hypocrisy of ‘Human Rights’

The U.S. Hypocrisy of ‘Human Rights’

Long before President Trump, the U.S. government had made a mockery of “human rights,” condemning abuses by adversary states but silent when crimes were committed by U.S. agents or U.S. allies, explains Todd E. Pierce.

By Todd E. Pierce

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is reportedly considering closing the Office of Global Criminal Justice, a tiny agency with a meager budget of $3 million a year, located within the State Department.

Some of the original detainees jailed at the Guantanamo Bay prison, as put on display by the U.S. military.

According to its website, the office “advises the Secretary of State . . . on issues related to war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide.” It “also coordinates U.S. Government positions relating to the international and hybrid courts currently prosecuting persons responsible for genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity — not only for such crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Cambodia — but also in Kenya, Libya, Côte d’Ivoire, Guatemala, and elsewhere in the world.”

Furthermore, it deploys “a range of diplomatic, legal, economic, military, and intelligence tools to help expose the truth, judge those responsible, protect and assist victims, enable reconciliation, deter atrocities, and build the rule of law.”

The New York Times reported that human rights advocates saw the proposal as an example of “the Trump administration’s indifference to human rights outside North Korea, Iran and Cuba.” Human rights activists also said that shutting the Office “would hamper efforts to publicize atrocities and bring war criminals to justice.” Newsweek reported, however, that the Obama administration also reportedly considered downgrading the office and merging it with another agency.

According to the Newsweek article, the office offered rewards for information on “war criminals, and has inveighed against brutal dictators, including Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.” But the article also noted it “has not criticized Saudi Arabia or other American allies with dismal human rights records.”

The same Newsweek piece explained that the office was formed following the 1996 passage of the War Crimes Act. That Act defined a war crime as a “grave breach” of the Geneva Conventions. The War Crimes Act, codified as 18 U.S. Code § 2441, makes it an offense, “whether inside or outside the United States,” to commit a war crime, if one is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or a national of the United States. Newsweek writer Nina Burleigh correctly noted that when “the CIA began using torture early in the Iraq War and, later, jailing people indefinitely and without trial in Guantanamo, the U.S. was in open breach of the conventions.” As noted above, the Office of Global Criminal Justice has inveighed against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. But it seemed to have had no problem with the Syrian government when CIA officials outsourced torture to the Syrian government earlier in the so-called Global War on Terror.

A Symbol of Hypocrisy

So, if there was ever a U.S. government agency standing as a symbol for U.S. hypocrisy, the Office of Global Criminal Justice is it. It is not hard to see in decoding their mission statement that “elsewhere in the world” does not mean leaders of any U.S.-allied nations.

Barack Obama and George W. Bush at the White House.

But even more hypocritical is having a U.S. government agency charged with tasks to “help expose the truth, judge those responsible, protect and assist victims, enable reconciliation, deter atrocities, and build the rule of law,” when the U.S. Department of Justice is doing the exact opposite in enforcing the War Crime Act itself.

That hypocrisy is seen in a series of cases beginning in 2006 with the decision in Rasul v. Rumsfeld, by the D.C. District Court. As law professor Steve Vladeck explained, when asked of that case in a 2006 article, “Is torture or other forms of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment (CIDT) within the scope of government employment? At least somewhat surprisingly, . . . the answer to that question is ‘yes.’”

Since 2006, the principle in the decision of Rasul v. Rumsfeld that Vladeck referred to has become a time-honored principle of U.S. jurisprudence, and a symbol of U.S. hypocrisy when compared to other U.S. pronouncements on torture and war crimes, as seen in a long series of cases down to the present day.

The manner that those decisions are written eliminates all illusions that the United States government is opposed to war crimes when done by “a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or a national of the United States” — they have been granted impunity under the law to offend. Famously, that was expressed by President Obama when he stated that those CIA officials guilty of torture would not be held criminally accountable for acts that are defined as “war crimes,” that is, torture. Little wonder that Donald Trump could so readily say he believed torture worked, since that is what many CIA officials continue to say.

Failing to prosecute war crimes is in itself a war crime under international law, and, to use the words of the “Office of Global Criminal Justice,” the opposite of its mission to “expose the truth,” and “judge those responsible.” But taking matters a step further, the U.S. government has designed a legal procedure to deny protection and assistance to victims. This is exactly what leaders of countries that are in line for U.S.-sponsored regime change are routinely accused of doing by the Office of Global Criminal Justice.

Shielding Torturers

The issue in a series of lawsuits involving the war crime of torture is whether former Guantanamo prisoners who were victims of U.S. government officials could sue the officials for civil damages. The courts have held, however, that government officials were entitled to immunity for the acts they had committed and were being sued for torture, as it was “within the scope of their employment.” These decisions are based on procedures based on the Westfall Act, which is too convoluted to explain here, but it serves to nullify the War Crimes Act.

CIA seal in lobby of the spy agency’s headquarters. (U.S. government photo)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Typical of the language in the court’s decisions is: “several detainees were subjected to abuse — including ‘forced grooming, solitary confinement, sleep deprivation, forced medication, transport in ‘shackles and chains, blackened goggles, and ear coverings,’ and the disruption of … religious practices” — even after a CSRT had determined that there were not enemy combatants…. The court held that the defendants’ actions were ‘of the kind’ [they were] employed to perform,” even though the mistreatment occurred when several of the plaintiffs “had no intelligence value.”

The court noted that “[t]hough the intelligence rationale has dissipated, the need to maintain an orderly detention environment remained after CSRT clearance.” The court continued: “Authorized or not, the conduct was certainly foreseeable because maintaining peace, security, and safety at a place like Guantanamo Bay is a stern and difficult business.”

That was what German military and Gestapo officers said of the prisons they worked in when they went on trial for war crimes at Nuremberg. Most common as their legal defense against war crime charges was that the defendants were only following “superior orders,” in German, “Befehl ist Befehl” (“orders are orders”) — a tactic now known as the Nuremberg defense. In other words, the earlier generation of war criminals effectively claimed their actions were “within their scope of employment.” That defense didn’t work at Nuremberg for Germans, but it works now for U.S. officials in U.S. courts.

The closing the Office of Global Criminal Justice just makes official what has been U.S. policy since 9/11. If it is true that hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue, then the U.S. government has showered tribute upon vice with the hypocrisy of the Office of Global Criminal Justice. If it closes, it means we won’t even pay tribute anymore to virtue, preferring to fully embrace vice in a display of our “authenticity.” And that may be the one example where the “Office of Global Criminal Justice” fulfills its mission to “expose the truth.”

(Ret.) Maj. Todd E. Pierce is a former Army judge advocate general defense attorney at Guantanamo Bay detention center, Cuba. This article originally appeared at The American Conservative at http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/tillerson-mulls-closing-of-war-crimes-office/ ]

Quote “Nazis used torture & escaped prosecution, so should Spokane psychologists”

Spokane psychologists should not liable for interrogation methods they designed  including waterboarding

The ACLU challenges that claim, saying psychologists should be held accountable for the methods they designed following the Sept. 11 terror attacks, including waterboarding and beatings. The sides plan arguments Friday in U.S. District Court in Spokane.

The two psychologists who helped craft the CIA’s harsh interrogation methods used in the war on terror should be as free from liability as a worker for a company that supplied the Nazis with poison gas used in concentration camps, defense lawyers said in a motion to dismiss a lawsuit from former detainees.

The American Civil Liberties Union challenges that claim, saying the psychologists should be held accountable for the methods they designed following the Sept. 11 terror attacks, including waterboarding and beatings. The sides plan arguments Friday in U.S. District Court in Spokane.

The outcome will determine whether the lawsuit will go to trial, set for Sept. 5. The judge could decide that the psychologists are guilty of aiding and abetting torture and no trial is needed. He also could dismiss the suit or limit what claims can be pursued.

Like the gassing technician who was acquitted on charges of helping the Nazis, Spokane psychologists James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen were independent contractors who lacked authority to “control, prevent or modify” the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques, their lawyers said.

Challenging that argument is Dror Ladin, an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer who sued on behalf of three former detainees: Suleiman Abdullah Salim, Mohamed Ahmed Ben Soud and a representative of Gul Rahman, who died in custody.

They were subjected to physical assaults and sleep deprivation, forced to stand for days in diapers with their arms chained overhead, doused with icy water and stuffed into boxes.

“In fact, the Nuremberg tribunals that judged the Nazis and their enablers after World War II established the opposite rule: Private contractors are accountable when they choose to provide unlawful means and profit from war crimes,” Ladin said.

The owner of the company that developed the poison gas for the Nazis was executed after World War II.

Mitchell and Jessen came up with the “torture methods,” personally tested them on the CIA’s first prisoner, and formed a company that took in $81 million to run the program, Ladin said.

“Making money by choosing to supply the tools for torture isn’t ‘simply doing business,’” Ladin said. “It’s illegal.”

The psychologists’ lawyers say they hoped to “prevent another catastrophic attack on the United States.”

When the CIA asked for help interrogating Abu Zubaydah, a “high value” detainee, Mitchell suggested methods used for decades at an U.S. Air Force school, his lawyers said. When the CIA asked for more details, Mitchell provided that help and brought in Jessen.

The techniques were designed to motivate a person to provide information, “while avoiding permanent physical harm or profound and pervasive personality change,” defense lawyers said. Mitchell and Jessen “never acted beyond the scope of their CIA contracts,” the attorneys said.

They noted the lawsuit over the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, in which federal contractors received immunity from clean water laws for any damage resulting from their actions as long as they acted within the government’s directives.

In this case, Congress empowered the president to respond to terrorist threats, and he directed the National Counterterrorism Center to capture and interrogate al-Qaida operatives. The CIA then hired the psychologists. Therefore, the government’s immunity extends to Mitchell and Jessen and the lawsuit should be thrown out, their lawyers said.

The ACLU says there’s a legal and moral imperative to hold the men accountable

Mitchell helped implement interrogation techniques used on Zubaydah that began with extreme sensory deprivation, shifted to coercive methods to instill fear and despair, then moved to the “aggressive phase,” involving assaults, waterboarding and stuffing him into coffin-like boxes, the ACLU said.

Zubaydah “cried, begged, pleaded, vomited, trembled, shook and became so hysterical he could not communicate,” the group’s lawyers said.

By 2003, the psychologists’ methods were formalized in instructions sent to a secret CIA prison where the plaintiffs in the new lawsuit were held and tortured, the ACLU said. Mitchell and Jessen participated in some interrogations, the lawyers said.

When Jessen observed prolonged physical assaults on Rahman, his reaction “was to opine that it was worth trying” and suggested alterations that might prove more effective, the ACLU said.

After those methods were added, Rahman, “starved, sleepless and freezing,” died of hypothermia.

How Witnesses of the Unseen: Seven Years in Guantánamo Opens Up the Horrors of Torture

Seven Years in Guantanamo Opens Up the Horrors of Torture

 by Robert Koehler

To read Witnesses of the Unseen: Seven Years in Guantánamo is to run your mind along the contours of hell.

The next step, if you’re an American, is to embrace it. Claim it. This is who we are: We are the proprietors of a cluster of human cages. This torture center is still open. Men (“forever prisoners”) are still being held there, their imprisonment purporting to keep us safe.

The book, by Lakhdar Boumediene and Mustafa Ait Idir – two Algerian men arrested in Bosnia in 2011 and wrongly accused of being terrorists – allows us to imagine ourselves at Guantánamo, this outpost of the Endless War.

“‘Take him outside,’ the interrogator told them. They led me up a flight of eight or nine concrete steps to a long gravel drive. It was pitch black out, and completely quiet. There was no one around. One of the soldiers grabbed my left arm, and another took my right. And then they started running.

“I tried to keep up, but my legs were shackled together. First, my flip-flops fell off, and after a few barefoot strides, my legs fell out from under me. The soldiers didn’t even slow down. They kept a firm grip on my arms while my legs bounced and scraped along the ground, gravel biting into them. When the run finally ended, the soldiers brought me back to the interrogation room, bloody and bedraggled.”

This is one fragment, one story of the seven years these two innocent men endured: these two fathers who were pulled away from their wives and children, yanked from their lives, stuffed into cages, interrogated endlessly and pointlessly, humiliated, force-fed (in Lakhdar’s case) . . . and finally, finally, ordered by a US judge to be freed, when their case, Boumediene v. Bush, was at long last heard in a real court and the lack of evidence against them became appallingly clear.

The book is the story of the courage it takes to survive.

And it’s a story that can only be told because of the work of the Boston legal firm WilmerHale, which spent more than 17,000 pro bono hours litigating the case, “work that would have cost paying clients more than $35 million.”

Lakhdar and Mustafa were freed in 2008 and began rebuilding their lives. They eventually decided they wanted to tell their story – to an American audience. Daniel Norland, who was a lawyer at WilmerHale when the case was making its way through the court process (but was not part of the litigation team) and his sister, Kathleen List, who speaks fluent Arabic, conducted more than 100 hours of interviews with the two men, which were shaped into Witnesses of the Unseen.

In October 2011, the two men, who were living and working in Sarajevo, were among six Algerians who wound up being arrested by Bosnian authorities and charged with plotting to blow up the American embassy in Sarajevo. They were held for three months, then released. There was no evidence to back up the accusation.

But this turns out to be the beginning of their story, not the end of it. The men were released not back to their own lives but to an authority more powerful than the Bosnian judicial system: They were released to the Americans, who had begun rounding up Muslims . . . uh, terrorists. Evidence, or lack thereof, didn’t matter. These men were shipped to a new military prison, built at the Guantánamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba – an offshore prison, in other words, unencumbered by the US Constitution. The detainees there allegedly had zero rights. That was the whole point.

Much of what Lakhdar and Mustafa describe is the efficiency of the US military in dehumanizing its prisoners. The beatings and physical pain inflicted by guards, interrogators and even medical personnel were only part of it. The men also endured sexual humiliation, endless mocking of their religion – “I heard . . . that a soldier went into someone’s cell and flushed his Qur’an down the toilet” – and the cruel, teasing “misplacement” or censorship of letters from the prisoners’ loved ones.

Several years into his imprisonment, Lakhdar went on a hunger strike, which meant he was subjected to force-feeding, which the U.N. Human Rights Commission has called a form of torture:

“The soldier brought out an apparatus with a long yellow tube and started measuring out the length of tube he needed. He stopped when he got to a marking somewhere between 45 and 50 inches. That was the amount of tube he was going to insert through my nostril. . . .

“It’s almost impossible to explain what a feeding tube feels like to someone who hasn’t experienced it. I felt like I was choking, and being strangled, and yet somehow still able to breathe, all at the same time.

“The soldier taped the tube in place. I could see the Ensure trickling through the tube, one droplet at a time. It felt cold as it reached my stomach. I later learned that a full feeding normally takes fifteen to twenty minutes, but that first time they went exceptionally slowly. I sat in the clinic, chained to the chair, a tube protruding down my throat, for the rest of the afternoon and all through the night.”

It took no less than a Supreme Court ruling to start ending this nightmare.

In early 2007, a US Circuit Court judge had refused to hear Boumediene v. Bush on the grounds that Guantánamo prisoners had no Constitutional rights. But the Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal, and in June 2008 ruled that Guantánamo counted as part of the US and, as Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote, the government couldn’t “switch the Constitution on and off at will.”

Thus the case went back to the Circuit Court and a real hearing got underway, leading to one of the most appalling revelations in the book: “Our lawyers had told us, in the days leading up to our trial, about a recent bizarre development in our case: the government had dropped its allegation that we had plotted to blow up the US Embassy in Sarajevo. Just like in Bosnia seven years before, authorities were eager to toss around bomb-plot allegations right up until a court required them to provide evidence.

“Instead, our lawyers told us, the government now said that the reason it considered us ‘enemy combatants’ was that it had evidence – classified evidence that I wasn’t allowed to see – that we had made a plan to fly to Afghanistan and join Al Qaeda’s fight against American forces there. This was the first time I had ever heard this allegation. No one – no police officer, no Bosnian official, no American interrogator – had ever asked me a single question about it.

“And it was a ludicrous allegation. . . .”

And the judge ruled in their favor and they eventually were set free, to reclaim their lives, to see their children for the first time in seven years – and to give their story to the world.

But as long as Gitmo remains open and the Endless War continues – and no one is held accountable – there is no ending to this story, just an open wound

Hasan Nasrallah: Trump Must Be Thanked For His Stupidity: In Case You Missed It

We should thank Trump for revealing the true face of the racist, cruel, criminal and murderous U.S. government.

Posted July 27, 2017

%d bloggers like this: