The Oslo process was a trap from which the Palestinians never escaped: ex-UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine

Source

By M.A. Saki

TEHRAN- Richard Anderson Falk, professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University and former UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine, says “the Oslo process was a trap from which the Palestinians never escaped”.
“Indeed, the dynamics of this Oslo period from 1993 until the start of the Trump presidency in 2017 was to raise Israeli expectations with respect to its maximal territorial ambitions,” Falk tells the Tehran Times in an exclusive interview.
Here is the full text of the exclusive interview:
Q: As a UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine your reports revealed many facts about the Israeli settlement policies, its apartheid approach, and so on. Your efforts in this regard are commendable. To what extent did these reports have a practical impact on Israeli policies?
A: My period as UN Special Rapporteur to Palestine was between 2008 and 2014. During that time Israel carried out massive attacks on Gaza in 2008-09, 2012, and 2014, while expanding the archipelago of its unlawful settlements on the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and blocking any realistic process of a political compromise in the context of the Oslo Peace Process. I mention these negative developments as background for responding to your question about whether my reports had any ‘practical impact on Israeli policies.’ I would have to acknowledge that I could not identify any positive impact on Israeli practices and policies, especially in relation to its efforts to pursue its expansionist ambitions with regard to the control of Palestinian territory and its non-Jewish inhabitants or its unabashed defiance of international law and UN authority.
A more promising Palestinian strategy, additional to continuing acts and displays of resistance, is to encourage pressures mounted by the global solidarity movement including at the UN. Such campaigns can gain inspiration from the South African worldwide anti-apartheid movement, which overcame seemingly insurmountable odds to achieve an unexpected, mostly bloodless, victory over racism in the form of a nonviolent transition to multi-racial constitutional democracy.It seems that the heightening of criticism of Israel’s behavior by myself and others did encourage Israel’s new approach, which abandoned defending itself against allegations of unlawfulness and criminality, and instead mobilizing energy and devoting resources to defaming critics, and doing its best to discredit, and even criminalize support for the BDS Campaign and other global solidarity initiatives as the Free Gaza Campaign. This Israeli pushback culminated in the widespread adoption of the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism that deliberately conflated hatred of Jews as a people with criticism of Israel as the State of the Jewish people. It is ironic that this regressive move has been most influential in countries such as the U.S., UK, and Germany that pride themselves on being the most respected constitutional democracies the world has known since ancient Athens, and yet when it comes to Israel the right of free expression and nonviolent protest are violated with official approval.
I believe my reports did have some beneficial impact on the discourse within the UN itself (including civil society NGOs), and on the understanding of the diplomatic community, with respect to four distinct aspects of Israeli behavior: 1) Understanding the settler colonial character of Israel’s domination and dispossession of the Palestinian people; 2) The de facto annexationist aspects of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem carried out in violation of international humanitarian law; 3) The unsupportable character of prolonged belligerent occupation, the abusive nature of which is not addressed by international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Conventions and Protocols; 4) The apartheid character of Israel’s Jewish State, not only in relation to the occupation of the territory acquired in the 1967 War but in relation to the Palestinian people as a whole, including refugees and involuntary exiles, the minority living in pre-1967 Israel, and those in Gaza after Israel’s ‘disengagement’ of 2005.
I gave particular attention in my reports to the daily injustices associated with prolonged occupation of Palestinian territories, which had not attracted much prior attention, although my successor as SR, Michael Lynk, has carried my arguments further and to their logical conclusion that the occupation must be ended by judicial and political action at the international level. The legally, morally, and politically problematic character of ‘prolonged occupation,’ especially as combined in this with a denial of all civil and political rights to the residents of the occupied Palestinian territories and subversive of underlying Palestinian sovereignty as evidenced by UN recognition of Palestine in 2012 as a non-voting member State in the UN.
I believe that my reports helped in small ways to change the discourse and perceptions of civil society activists as well as of many members of the diplomatic community who privately conveyed to me their agreement with my analysis. The reports also brought up to date the lawlessness of Israel’s behavior with respect to the settlements, the separation wall, and reliance on excessive force, most pronouncedly in Gaza, which figured in the way the media and public opinion understood the competing arguments being put forward by Israel and Palestine, and seemed of some use to governments in formulating their approach to the underlying conflict.
Q: One of your reports on Israel was removed from the UN website under pressure from the United States and Israel. What was the content of the report, and why was there so much sensitivity about it?
A: My report was temporarily removed from the UN website in either 2009 or 2010, but interestingly, not at the initiative of either Israel or the United States, but by the Palestinian Authority, which represents Palestine at the UN. Their sole objection to my text was its acknowledgment of Hamas as the administering authority of Gaza, ineffective control of the governing process, reflecting both through its electoral victory in the 2006 elections in Gaza and as a result of the expulsion of Fatah forces associated with the Palestinian Authority during the following year.
What is worse (during the Oslo process), the Palestinians went along with their own entrapment, somehow thinking that they would be rewarded by their cooperative attitudes.It was the mere mention of Hamas that disturbed and agitated the PA to the point of seeking my resignation as SR, especially after I criticized aspects of the PA administration of the West Bank and their surprising controversial support of Israeli and U.S demands that the UN disregard the recommendations of the Goldstone Report that had been critical of Israel’s violation of the Laws of War during Operation Cast Lead, its devastating military attack on Gaza that started at the end of 2008 and lasted for several weeks in January 2009. After failing to oust me from my position, the PA shifted its tone and posture, and for the remaining years of my mandate was cooperative, and did not subsequently object to my reports even when the role of Hamas was discussed.
Q: You have repeatedly criticized Israel’s policies and considered the peace process as a hoax. Why do you think this process is a hoax?
A: Maybe the word ‘hoax’ overstates my view, which was that the peace process as structured and implemented greatly favored Israel, discriminated against Palestine to such an extent that it was naïve to expect a sustainable and just peace to emerge from such one-sided diplomacy. This basic imbalance was evident in a number of respects. Above all, the framework for negotiations was seriously flawed by giving the United States, an overt and unconditional supporter of Israel, the inappropriate role of intermediary or ‘honest broker.’ This flaw exhibited itself by diplomats and staff representing the United States in the course of the Oslo process often being closely identified with the Zionist Movement, including being drawn from former employees of the pro-Israeli extremist lobbying group AIPAC. Such partisanship also explained the U.S. pressure on the Palestinian negotiating team not to object to settlement expansion or press other legal grievances as such objections would disrupt the peace process, insisting that such issues be left unresolved until ‘final status’ negotiations occurred at the last stage of the process, which was never reached. This pressure to mute international law objections to Israeli expansionism was perversely coupled with Washington’s acceptance of ‘facts on the ground’ as taking precedence over legal objections to the settlements, in effect, punishing Palestinians for following the advice to defer objections. This play of arguments reveals the entrapment of the Palestinians by the Oslo process—instead of insisting to Israel to freeze settlement activity to safeguard the diplomatic prospects, it exerted pressure on the Palestinians to suppress their objections to Israeli unlawful behavior, which by its nature, threatened reaching a two-state compromise. What is worse, the Palestinians went along with their own entrapment, somehow thinking that they would be rewarded by their cooperative attitudes.
The framework for negotiations was seriously flawed by giving the United States, an overt and unconditional supporter of Israel, the inappropriate role of intermediary or ‘honest broker.’The Oslo process was a trap from which the Palestinians never escaped, and ended up worsening Palestinian prospects as well as inflicting additional torments, including the frequency and viciousness of settler violence directed at Palestinian residents of the West Bank. Indeed, the dynamics of this Oslo period from 1993 until the start of the Trump presidency in 2017 was to raise Israeli expectations with respect to its maximal territorial ambitions, and to depress Palestinian hopes of reaching a political compromise in the form of the co-existence of separate sovereign states enjoying equal standing in international society. It became evident, as well, that Israeli internal politics drifted steadily to the right, partly reflecting the increasingly leverage of the settler movement. These developments made it increasingly clear that a two-state political compromise was no longer seen by the Israeli leadership as an expedient goal. In effect, it was no longer necessary to hide the Israeli belief that the West Bank, known in Israel by its biblical names of Judea and Samaria, was an integral element of the entitlement of the Jewish people to the land of Palestine as interpreted by mainstream Zionism as ‘the promised land.’ Some Zionists, attached to the ‘democratic’ claim attached to Israel’s political identity, worried that annexing the West Bank would explode a demographic bomb that would make it impossible to hide the apartheid nature of the Israeli state.
Q: U.S. President Donald Trump has now proposed a so-called Deal of the Century, and Israel is seeking to annex the West Bank. How do you evaluate this process?
A: As the occupation continued, and Israel’s annexationist moves met with only token international resistance, there was a noticeable shift in the outlook of Netanyahu, the dominant Israeli political figure of the period, from an international posture favoring political compromise to an outcome reached unilaterally in the form of an imposed Israeli one-state solution. When Trump arrived in the White House in early 2017 this shift for the first time enjoyed the explicit geopolitical support of the U.S. government, and need no longer be hidden from view. In this atmosphere Israel moved to affirm its claims to most of the promised land, and relinquished any attachment to ‘peace’ through negotiations, even negotiations biased in their favor.
The Trump Plan, whether known as ‘the deal of the century’ by its official name of ‘From Peace to Prosperity’ gives its seal of approval to the Israel vision of a one-state solution, slightly disguised by designating areas set aside for Palestinian administration as ‘a State,’ what was correctly associated with the Bantustans established by the apartheid regime in South Africa to hide the ugliest features of racist domination and exploitation.
The Trump Plan, whether known as ‘the deal of the century’ by its official name of ‘From Peace to Prosperity’ gives its seal of approval to the Israel vision of a one-state solution, slightly disguised by designating areas set aside for Palestinian administration as ‘a State,’ what was correctly associated with the Bantustans established by the apartheid regime in South Africa to hide the ugliest features of racist domination and exploitation. As is now known to the world, even the PA was unable to treat the Trump Plan as a serious negotiating proposal, correctly dismissing it as a blueprint for the Israeli one-state victory scenario. Israeli plans to annex a large portion of the West Bank by de jure enactment, on the basis of a green light from Washington, seems likely to be implemented in coming months, although opposed by some prominent security officials in Israel and even by maximalist Zionists on the grounds either of imperiling the Jewish demographic majority or provoking a surge of renewed Arab and international support for Palestinian grievances, and perhaps a trigger for a third intifada.
It should be internationally understood that the Trump Plan lacks any respectable international backing, and as such is in no way deserving of respect at the UN or elsewhere. It is an extremely partisan and arrogant set of proposals that are inconsistent with international law, the UN consensus, and elementary morality. Rather than being seriously considered, it should be summarily dismissed as an irrelevant geopolitical attempt to deny the Palestinian people of their inalienable right of self-determination.
Q: May 15 marked the 72nd anniversary of the establishment of Israel, and all through these years Israel has been supported by countries such as the United States and Britain. It is also noticeable that countries are consenting to Israel’s occupation. Please explain?
A: The core rationale of support for Israel over the years has changed. Back when Israel was established in 1948 the public mood was shaped by the experience of World War II, including an acute sense of guilt on the part of liberal democracies in the West as having done so little to oppose Nazi racism toward Jews. From the start of the Zionist Project in the late 19th century anti-Semitic governments in Europe oddly shared the goal of Zionists of inducing Jews to leave their countries, and were eager to encourage emigration to Palestine. These attitudes underlay the 1917 colonialist initiative of the UK, known to the world as the Balfour Declaration, by which Britain pledged to look with favor on the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine although the Jewish minority was less than 8% and the Arab majority was never consulted. The more politically active personalities in Palestine opposed the idea of a Jewish homeland in their midst from the beginning. In that sense, Western support rested on these rather weak moral foundations that were not even consistent with regional strategic interests such as access to (Persian) Gulf oil reserves, trade routes, and leverage in the post-Ottoman Arab world. Zionism in Palestine turned against its British backer when Arab unrest in the 1930s led to some limits being imposed on Jewish immigration to Palestine, and the more militant Zionist militias started an ‘anti-colonial’ war in Palestine despite themselves being colonists. Of course, this was not so unusual in the British experience, having their earlier memories of the American Revolutionary War waged by their own colonists to gain political independence.
This hostile propaganda (against Palestinians), popularized by Hollywood movies demonizing Arabs and glorifying Israelis, bestowed on Israel the political space to impose an apartheid structure of control over the Palestinian people as a whole, and to avoid any international accountability relating to its defiance of international law beyond token expressions of disapproval from European capitals and Washington whenever Israel’s provocations could not be entirely ignored.
In Palestine, as elsewhere, British divide and rule tactics during its administration of Palestine between the two world wars suggested to the UN that partition, again without consulting the smaller, yet still Arab majority, was the solution, which in turn sparked a series of regional wars, culminating in the 1967 War. In that war Israel demonstrated its military prowess, and was no longer regarded by American policymakers as a troublesome burden of conscience for the United States, but was seen as a reliable strategic ally in a turbulent region, and Israel has remained reliable over the course of the last fifty years. All in all, Israel made this unusual transition from being a burden of conscience to becoming a geopolitical junior, often not so junior, partner of the United States. In the process of a string of military defeats of the Arab countries by Israel, especially the 1973 War, there was a gradual weakening of regional support for the liberation of Palestine, and more of an Arab elite disposition to normalize the presence of Israel, and more recently join in an implicit coalition confronting Iran with the lead role being assumed by the U.S., a result of Trump’s tightening regional alignments with Israel and Saudi Arabia during the last four years. The Jewish diaspora also provided a major source of Zionist pro-Israeli leverage around the world, first, in the post-Holocaust context, and after 1967, in the course of celebrating Israel’s military successes and modernizing record of achievement.
Throughout the process, the native Palestinian population was Orientalized, denigrated as ‘backward’ and inclined toward ‘terrorism.’ This hostile propaganda, popularized by Hollywood movies demonizing Arabs and glorifying Israelis, bestowed on Israel the political space to impose an apartheid structure of control over the Palestinian people as a whole, and to avoid any international accountability relating to its defiance of international law beyond token expressions of disapproval from European capitals and Washington whenever Israel’s provocations could not be entirely ignored. Although Israel has benefitted over the decades from American aid and support and European less blatant support, Israeli leadership has always had a Plan B. Israel, sought by every means to be self-reliant with respect to its security, highlighted by its covert acquisition and development of a nuclear weapons arsenal. In this sense, unless there are important shifts in the outlook of Arab governments (although not among the captive populations), even the withdrawal of U.S. support, which seems highly unlikely, would not make Israel much more vulnerable to external pressures.
Q: Based on the realities on the ground, it seems that the only way for the Palestinian people to get their rights is to resist the Israeli occupation. What is your opinion?
A: In view of the considerations discussed above, the most opportune Palestinian strategy would be to give up hopes under present conditions for reaching a satisfactory solution through diplomacy or at the UN. A more promising Palestinian strategy, additional to continuing acts and displays of resistance, is to encourage pressures mounted by the global solidarity movement including at the UN. Such campaigns can gain inspiration from the South African worldwide anti-apartheid movement, which overcame seemingly insurmountable odds to achieve an unexpected, mostly bloodless, victory over racism in the form of a nonviolent transition to multi-racial constitutional democracy.
The UN should not be forgotten. It remains a crucial site of struggle in waging what I have in the past referred to as ‘the legitimacy war’ fought to gain control of world public opinion, as well the high ground of public morality and international law. It should be appreciated that since 1945 the side that prevailed in the legitimacy war, rather than the side that controlled the battlefield, usually achieved political victory in the end. Gandhi appreciated the role of international public opinion in changing the balance of forces in India against the British Empire as did Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam in leading the defeat of overwhelmingly superior American military capabilities. Each conflict has unique characteristics, but the Palestinian struggle, despite present difficulties, can draw hope from the historical record of liberation and self-determination struggles of the past 75 years, and it is winning the legitimacy war, despite the Zionist defamatory pushback.

Large cyber attack against Israel conducted from Gaza, Turkey, North Africa

By News Desk -2020-05-22

BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:10 A.M.) – Israeli media revealed on Thursday that the cyber attack on thousands of Israeli sites was carried out by a group of hackers from the Gaza Strip, Turkey and North Africa.

Initial reports indicated that Iran was behind the attack, in light of the recent escalation against the background of an Israeli attack that disrupted an Iranian port last week, in response to an Iranian disruption of an Israeli water system.

Ronin Bergman, a military and intelligence affairs analyst, told Ynet News, that the group referred to consists of 9 hackers, who are gathered by an “anti-Israel ideology” and formed their group on April 11th.

Bergman stated that the attack was simple and uncomplicated and aimed at defaming the sites, “taking advantage of the feet and weaknesses (of Word Press) to enter an Israeli server company.”

The Israeli media released a photo that it said was the leader of the hacker group, “Hello Loya”.

Reports indicated that the attack disrupted the work of the sites, replaced their main pages with pictures and video clips showing destroyed Israeli cities, and broadcast an anti-Israel message in both Hebrew and English, saying: “The countdown to the destruction of the State of Israel began a long time ago.”

Among the hacked websites is the Ehud Hatsla Association’s rescue teams, as well as local authorities and private companies, organizations, associations and websites of a number of museums.

One of the hacked websites, which appeared in the name of a hacker group involved in the attack, was “Hackers_Of_Savior”, and it was mentioned in the video clip of this group on YouTube: “We gather here to avenge the Zionist crimes against the Palestinians who died or lost their lives, their families and their lands.”


ALSO READ
  

Israel: A utopian image or merely a mirage?

Source

May 13, 2020 – 21:53

TEHRAN – While the founders of Israel had envisioned a utopia for Israeli settlers, now after 72 years, it has brought no freedom or justice to anyone except for some Zionist Jews and been involved in genocide and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians an Israeli-American activist and author tells the Tehran Times.

‘Genocide and ethnic cleansing is the practice of Israel’ 

On promises by the founders of Israel, including Ben Gurion, who had envisioned a utopia for settlers in Israel based on freedom, justice, and peace,  Miko Peled says “Israel is an apartheid regime” which “has been involved in genocide and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.”

He says Israel is “providing Jewish citizens who are Zionist with all the rights of liberal democracy.” 

He also says it “is true” that some Israelis are returning to their original countries as they are fed with governance.

‘Corrupt Netanyahu main reason behind Israeli political crisis’

Israel has been in a political crisis after three inconclusive elections and it is facing the growing prospect of an unprecedented fourth election.

Peled says it is mainly because “Israeli politics is controlled by the corrupt Prime Minister Netanyahu and his racist, violent allies.”

The deadlock ended now that Netanyahu got an agreement that he accepted and protects him and allows him to continue to serve as prime minister, he says, adding there was even social disobedience “about the fact that the man they voted for, Benny Gantz, who promised to unseat Netanyahu, lied to his voters and is now sitting with Netanyahu.”

‘Israel not a democracy but an apartheid’

On claims by Tel Aviv and its allies in the West that Israel is the only democratic country in the West Asia region, Peled says, “Israel is not and has never been a democracy. It an apartheid regime.”
 
He goes on to note that “the problem with West perspective is that it is a Zionist perspective which recognizing the legitimacy of Zionism and does not recognize the rights of Palestinians.”
 
 Israel sees Trump’s reckless policies toward Iran ‘a great thing’ 

Actually, in over a year that Israel has been holding three elections, each time Donald Trump has taken a step to promote chances of Netanyahu in elections. His administration moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, recognized the occupied Golan Heights as Israeli territory, and recently Mike Pompeo claimed that annexation of lands in the West Bank does not violate international law. However, each time Netanyahu’s party failed to win enough seats in Knesset to form a government.

“Israelis are actually very happy with Trump. His support for the Israeli regime and his reckless policies regarding Iran and the Palestinians is seen as a great thing,” Peled points out.

‘Racism in Israel comes even at expenses of public health’

Despite the coronavirus epidemic, Israel is refusing to release Palestinians who are held in crowded prisons, he said, noting, “Israel never respected Palestinian rights, even now that the spread of the Coronavirus is dangerous to all people.” 
“Racism in Israel is so strong that it comes even at the expense of public health,” the activist regrets.

 ‘2 million people of Gaza are heroes’

Gaza Strip is considered the greatest open prison on the earth.

Peled calls two million residents of Gaza “heroes” who are victims of “Zionist racism and violence”.

He also notes that except Iran, no country in the world cares about the miseries of the Gazans.

“They are victims of Zionist racism and violence and of the fact that the rest of the world, with the exception of Iran, do not care about them.”

RELATED NEWS

Over 250 Artists, Writers Urge Israel to Stop Siege of Gaza

By The Levant

Global Research, May 18, 2020

The Levant 16 May 2020

More than 250 global artists and writers including rocker Peter Gabriel, director Ken Loach and actor Viggo Mortensen have appealed to Israel to stop the “siege” of Gaza.

The coronavirus epidemic could have a devastating effect in “the world’s largest open-air prison”, the artists said in an online letter.

“Long before the global outbreak of COVID-19 threatened to overwhelm the already devastated healthcare system in Gaza, the UN had predicted that the blockaded coastal strip would be unliveable by 2020,” the letter said.

“With the pandemic, Gaza’s almost two million inhabitants, predominantly refugees, face a mortal threat in the world’s largest open-air prison,” it added.

Other signatories included poet Taha Adnan, Canadian writer Naomi Klein and British group Massive Attack.

The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli blockade since 2007 when the Islamist movement Hamas took control of the enclave.

Israel argues the measures are necessary to isolate Hamas, considered a terrorist organization by most Western countries.

It says that restrictions on some imports to the coastal strip are designed to deny Hamas materials that could be used to enhance its fighting capabilities.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since the group took control of the enclave, but reached a tentative truce in late 2018 that was renewed after successive flare-ups last year.

The Gaza Strip also borders Egypt, which severely restricts movement in and out of the territory.

“Well before the ongoing crisis, Gaza’s hospitals were already stretched to breaking point through lack of essential resources denied by Israel’s siege. Its healthcare system could not cope with the thousands of gunshot wounds, leading to many amputations,“ the artists said.

“Reports of the first cases of coronavirus in densely-populated Gaza are therefore deeply disturbing,“ they said.

“We back Amnesty International’s call on all world governments to impose a military embargo on Israel until it fully complies with its obligations under international law.“

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

Source is AFP

American Jews Have Abandoned Gaza — And the Truth. The Struggle for Human Decency

The original source of this article is The Levant

Copyright © The LevantThe Levant, 2020

Gaza vs. Coronavirus

Gaza vs. Coronavirus

By Mona El-Hajj

Gaza stands far from being able to handle any form of force majeure. Due to the ‘Israelis’ who have continuously confined and strained the most densely populated area on Earth, two million Gazans could tell you all about lockdowns, as well as the hells of food and medical scarcity.

Since 2007, people and goods have been restricted from entering and leaving the Strip, causing a dire shortage on electricity, potable water and infrastructure. Add to that an already crippled healthcare system with resource insufficiency. So far, 15 cases of coronavirus have been reported in Gaza, however, that number shows nil reliability: recently running out of testing kits, Gaza has been allowed only 5 more, which are viable for testing roughly 500 civilians in a sea of 2 million people.

“This has been the most difficult thing we’ve ever had to deal with,” says Iman, mother of three, a Palestinian residing in Gaza. “Treatment is unavailable, and if the virus were to spread, we’re not ready to withstand it. The situation is unbearable; it would crush us.” Iman speaks with angst to Al-Ahed, expressing her worries over how she’ll feed her children on the one hand, pay her medical bills on the other, while juggling the day-to-day anxiety of the coronavirus pandemic.

With only seventy hospital ICU beds and some sixty-two ventilators – most of which are in disrepair – it is only normal that infant mortality rates in the Gaza strip is ten times that of the Zionist entity. Amid the Corona virus pandemic which has fueled the international community into a stockpiling marathon-frenzy, ‘Israel’ continues to obstruct any medicine, COVID-19 testing kits and hospital supplies by international organizations such as the UN, regardless of the state of international emergency. Donated by the WHO, only 480 tests have been allowed into Gaza Strip. With civilians crossing from Egypt and ‘Israel’, both having considerable diagnosis rates, 15 cases of COVID-19 is only bound to increase.

The crippling unemployment rates add to the severe living conditions in Gaza. “The majority of people here are poor except for the landlords which make up a very small minority. The most affected by the current situation are people like taxi and bus drivers who live on day to day income,” says Iman, whose husband has been out of a job for several months now. Gaza has one of the highest unemployment rates in the world, being %45 before the outbreak, which has naturally increased when the authorities issued quarantine. “So, most of us are committing to staying home, however there are workers that don’t have a choice. If they don’t work, they starve.” Although most Gazans are committing to quarantine, the densely-populated nature of Gaza strip makes social distancing unfeasible.

With such harsh living conditions, it is difficult to envision how an already-locked-down Gaza would be able to function. “Not everyone can buy masks and gloves. There’s a crazy increase in price, and they’re not available everywhere,” Iman says. It has been reported that a factory in Gaza which produces 10,000 masks a day, which has closed down in January, has reopened recently. However, with the owner being an ‘Israeli’, all masks go to ‘Israel’ as Palestinians are exploited for cheap labor.

“You could say we have none but God to rely on,” Iman chuckles, as you can hear the little desolation in her voice.

Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in Palestine (30 April – 06 May 2020)

Posted by PCHR

30 April – 6 May 2020

  • IOF raids into oPt: a dangerous vulnerability in Palestinian preventive measures to combat the spread of coronavirus
  • Israeli occupation escalates personal attacks on Palestinian public figures in occupied Eastern Jerusalem to ban Palestinian Authority’s work
  • 13 Palestinian civilians sustained wounds, including 3 children in the West Bank
  • shootings reported against agricultural lands and 4 times at Palestinian fishing boats in eastern and western Gaza Strip
  • In 63 IOF incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem: 59 civilians arrested, including 5 children, a poet (woman) and a journalist
  • Collective Punishment Policy: Demolition notice delivered to a prisoner’s family house in Tulkarm
  • 5 notice to halt construction at 3 houses, an agricultural room, and water well in Salfit; civilian properties bulldozed and a settlers road dug in the West Bank
  • Settlers attacks in the West Bank: houses attacked and vandalized, Palestinian civilian assaulted and robbed of his sheep;
  • IOF established 38 temporary military checkpoints in the West Bank and roads closed

Summary

Israeli occupation forces (IOF) continued to violate Palestinians’ human rights and commit crimes against civilians and their properties, conducting raids into Palestinian cities without regard to the state of emergency declared across the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) since 06 March 2020, in the efforts put forward to combat the spread of coronavirus. IOF raids are conducted without proper attention to prevention and safety standards to mitigate the risk of transmitting coronavirus to Palestinian territory, as the virus is widespread throughout Israel. PCHR’s concerns over Israeli raids still stand, as those raids undermine preventive measures adopted by the government. Meanwhile, settlers backed up by IOF continued to seize more civilian property and attack civilians and their property. This week, IOF launched an arrest campaign against prominent Palestinian figures who work for the Palestinian Authority (PA), in a continuation of Israeli systematic efforts to combat the presence and work of the PA in occupied East Jerusalem. PCHR reiterates its concern over the Israeli occupation’s policy of banning any preventive measures by the Palestinian Authority in occupied East Jerusalem, especially that Israel has adopted lenient measures in the city despite its responsibility for it under international law as an occupying power.

This week, PCHR documented 134 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by IOF and settlers in the oPt.  The restrictions imposed under the state of emergency have hindered our fieldwork team’s ability to cover all incidents in the oPt and were forced to collect information via phone from trusted local sources. As such, this report is an incomprehensive record of Israeli violations of human rights against Palestinians in the oPt, as IOF continues its attacks against civilians despite the exceptional circumstances that have overcome the whole world in the face of a life-threatening viral pandemic.

IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity: 13 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children, were shot and wounded in excessive use of force by IOF. Among those wounded, 6 sustained their wounds in IOF attacks on workers attempting to sneak into Israel via the Annexation wall in Jenin, Qalqilya and Tulkarem. While 6 others, including 3 children, were wounded during IOF suppression of a protest in Kufur Qaddoum, Qalqilya, West Bank. Another civilian was wounded in an IOF raid to Jericho. Dozens of civilians suffocated due to inhalation of tear gas fired by IOF during its raids into Palestinian cities. IOF committed12 shootings against agricultural lands eastern Gaza Strip, and 4 shootings were reported against Palestinian fishing boats off the western Gaza Strip shore.

IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians: IOF carried out 63 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, enticing fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 59 Palestinians were arrested, including 5 children, a poet (woman) and a journalist. This week, IOF launched an arrest campaign against prominent Palestinian figures who work for the Palestinian Authority (PA), in a continuation of Israeli systematic efforts to combat the presence and work of the PA in occupied East Jerusalem.

Collective Punishment Policy

On Friday, 01 May 2020, IOF Mohamed ‘Alaa Jameel Risha’s (19) family a demolition notice. Risha was arrested and wounded after carrying out  a stab attack on 28 April 2020 in Kafar Saba city in Israel.

Settlement expansion activities and settlers’ attacks: IOF continued its settlement expansion operations in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, PCHR documented 9 violations, including: 2 plantation grounds, a laundromat in Bethlehem, 4 notices to halt construction at 2 houses, an agricultural room and a water well in Salfit; agricultural tools confiscated while digging a water wll in Qalqilya, an agricultural room demolished in Tubas, water pool bulldozed and iron barracks dismanteled in Jericho, a notice to halt construction at a house in Jenin and a settlement road dug in Hebron.

PCHR also documented 4 settler attacks: houses attacked and vandalized, assault on a civilian a theft of his sheep in Nablus; 24 olive trees sabotaged in Qalqilya.

Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:

The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the History of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life. Furthermore, IOF uses Erez Crossing that is designated for movement of individuals as an ambush to arrest Palestinians who obtain permits to exit via Israel.

Meanwhile, IOF continued to divide the West Bank into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation since the Second Intifada and with temporary and permanent checkpoints, where civilian movement is restricted, and they are subject to arrest.

  1. Violation of the right to life and to bodily integrity
  1. Shooting and other violations of the right to life and bodily integrity
  • At approximately 03:00 on Thursday, 30 April 2020, IOF stationed along the annexation wall, adjacent to Zeta village, north of Tulkarm, opened fire at Palestinian workers. As a result, 2 civilians, from Ajjah village in Jenin, were shot and injured. IOF arrested one of the wounded civilians, namely Eyad Adanan Zuhair Ma’li (26), who was shot with a live bullet in his abdomen. The other civilian aged 41years old was shot with a live bullet in the left knee. He was transferred to Khalil Suleiman Governmental Hospital.
  • At approximately 06:50 on the same Thursday, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area ( 3 nautical miles). As a result, fishermen panicked and were forced to flee from the see. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 06:50 on Friday, 01 May 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area ( 3 nautical miles). As a result, fishermen panicked and were forced to flee from the see. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:00 on the same Friday, IOF stationed along the annexation wall, adjacent to Hablah village, south of Qalqiliyah, opened fire at a number of Palestinian workers when they attempted to enter Israel through the annexation wall’s gate for work . As a result, a 23-year-old young man was shot with a live bullet in his right leg and a 21-year-old young man was also shot with a live bullet in his right leg. The wounded civilians, who are from Qalqiliyah, were transferred to Dr. Darwish Nazal Hospital for medical treatment.
  • At approximately 14:30 on the same Friday, IOF stationed at the northern entrance established at lands of Kafer Qaddoum village, north of Qalqiliyah, suppressed a protest in which dozens of civilians participated to protest against closing the road for more than 16years. IOF chased the young men, who gathered in the area. Clashes erupted in the area in which IOF fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the young men. As a result, 6 civilians, including 3 children, were shot and injured with rubber bullets throughout their bodies.
  • At approximately 16:00 on the same Friday, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of al-Shoka village, east of Rafah, opened fire at Palestinian shepherds. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 22:20 on the same Friday, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of al-Buraij in central Gaza Strip, fired flare bombs at agricultural lands, adjacent to the border fence. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 07:00 on Saturday, 02 May 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area ( 3 nautical miles). As a result, fishermen panicked and were forced to flee from the see. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 13:50 on the same Saturday, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of al-Maghazi in central Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:00, IOF stationed along the annexation wall, adjacent to Hablaha village, south of Qalqiliyah, opened fire at a number of Palestinian workers when they attempted to enter Israel through the wall’s gate for work. As a result, a 30-year-old civilians was shot with 2 live bullets in his feet. He was transferred to Dr. Darwish Nazal Hospital in Qalqiliyah for medical treatment.
  • At approximately 03:00 on Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF moved into Aqabet Jaber refugee camp, southwest of Jericho. They stationed in the southern area of the camp. In the meantime, a number of Palestinian young men protested and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails  at Israeli soldiers. The soldiers chased the young men and fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, an 18-year-old young man was shot with a live bullet in his foot. He was transferred to Jericho Hospital for medical treatment.
  • At approximately 07:20 on the same Sunday, IOF stationed along the border fence, adjacent to Far’oun village, south of Tulkarm, fired live bullets at a number of Palestinian workers when they attempted to enter Israel through the wall’s gate for work. As a result, a 26-year-old young, from Tulkarm,  man was shot with a rubber bullet in his right leg. He was transferred to Thabet Thabet Hospital for medical treatment.
  • At approximately 22:00 on the same Sunday, IOF moved into al-Tour neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They stationed on Slaman al-Faresi Street in the center of the neighborhood. In the meantime, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and fireworks at Israeli soldiers while the later responded with rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, dozens of civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 03:00 on the same Sunday, IOF reinforced with military SUVs moved into al-Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron, deployed between houses and patrolled the area, causing fear among the residents. They raided and searched Islam Mahmoud Jawabrah’s (19) house, searched it and arrested Islam and took him to the area where the military vehicles stationed. In the meantime, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at Israeli soldiers. The soldiers chased the young man and fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a number of stone throwers suffocated due to tear gas canisters. At approximately 05:00 on the same day, IOF withdrew from the camp taking the arrested civilian with them.
  • At approximately 06:30 on Monday, 03 May 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area ( 3 nautical miles). As a result, fishermen panicked and were forced to flee from the see. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 09:00 on the same Monday, IOF reinforced with dozens of military SUVs moved into Kafer Aqab village, north of occupied East Jeruslem. They stationed in several sites in the villages, and checked the ID cards of passersby and wrote fines for some others, who were not wearing the muzzle as the Israeli government forces all people to wear it when they leave their homes in light of their procedures to combat the spread of corona virus. Israeli soldier also raided dozens of commercial shops and wrote  exorbitant fines for their owners. In the meantime, dozens of Palestinian young men protested and threw stones and empty bottles at Israeli soldiers while the later responded with rubber bullets, and sound bombs. As a result, many civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. They received medical treatment on the field.
  • At approximately 19:00 on the same Monday, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands in the vicinity of the land fill. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 08:00 on Tuesday, 05 May 2020, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of Khan Younis in southern Gaza Strip, fired live bullets and sound bombs at agricultural lands, east of Khuza’a village, adjacent to the border fence. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 02:00 on Wednesday, 06 May 2020, IOF reinforced with several military SUVs moved into Bani Na’im village, in Hebron. They patrolled the streets and fired sound bombs indiscriminately at Yaqin and Khelat al-Mas’ourah areas without a reason. As a result, residents. IOF later withdrew from the village; no other raids were reported.
  1. Incursions and arrests

Thursday, 30 April 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Jabal al-Mawaleh area, in central Bethlehem. They raided and searched Sufian Mohammed Ajaj’s (34) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Owa village, southwest of Hebron Governorate. They raided and search Mahmoud Waseem Masalmah’s (20) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Shweika suburb, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Ameer Ameed Abu Hashish (22), Majdi Mohammed Dar A’mar (23), and his brother Saleem (24), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 03:55, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Jericho, and stationed on the city center. They raided and searched Ahmed Hazem Jahalin’s (24) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Betounya, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched Ibrahim Awad al-Najar’s (27) house and arrested him.
  • IOF carried out (3) incursions in Seelat al-Thuhr village, south of Jenin; Deir Sharaf and Tal villages in Nablus. No arrests were reported.

Friday, 01 May 2020:

  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Beit Sera village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians: Mohammed Ra’ed Anqawi (22), Ibrahim Suliman Anqawi (20), and Mohammed Yaser Anqawi (20).
  • IOF carried out (6) incursions in Salem, Ourif, Surra, and Qasra villages in Nablus; al-Samoua and Deir Samit villages in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Saturday, 02 May 2020:

  • At approximately 23:00, IOF moved into Bab Hatta neighborhood, in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Eyad Mos’ab Ghazalah (17) and Mohammed Reyad al-Joulani (22), and arrested them.
  • IOF carried out an incursion in al-Jaftalek village, north of Jericho. No arrests were reported.

Sunday, 03 May 2020:

  • At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into al-Issaweya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (7) civilians including a child: Samer Anwar Obaid (34), Adam Kayed Mahmoud (19), Mo’tasem Hamza Obaid (16), Waleed Dawoud Alian (24), Qusai Abdullah Alian (22), Tamer Ali Mahmoud (21), and Mohammed Ramadan al-Masri (20).
  • At approximately 12:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Azoun village, east of Qalqilya. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians including a child: Akram Tayseer Saleem (15), Mohmmed Ali Redwan (24), and Mansour Asem Saleem (19).
  • At approximately 18:30, IOF who were on patrol in al-Bayada neighborhood, southeast of Nablus, arrested Deya’ Omar Darawshah (22) and Izzat Majed Awwad (22), while they were collecting beans from their land. IOF took them to Howara military camp, and released them at approximately 21:30 of the same day.
  • IOF carried out two incursions in Aqraba, southeast of Nablus Governorate, and Izbt al-Tabib, east of Qalqilya. No arrests were reported.

Monday, 04 May 2020:

  • At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Qafin village, northeast of Tulkarm. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Abed Basel Biqawi (28) and Bara’ Sameer Ammar (20), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into al-Fawwar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched two houses and arrested Mahmoud Ishaq Abu Hashhash (26) and Obaida Jaber al-Titi (21).
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Wad Risha, west of Hebron. They raided and searched Abdul Fattah Ata Abu Jhaisha’s (25) houses and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:45, IOF moved into Abu Shukhaidm village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Zeyad Mohammed Abu Salem’s (26) house and arrested him. It should be noted that Zeyad is a former prisoner in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 04:40, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Marka village, southwest of Jenin. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Nawras Firas Sbaih (19), and took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Nablus. They raided and searched Ameed al-Houtari’s (18) house, east of the city, and took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into al-Issaweya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Awni Dawoud Ateya’s (53) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 16:00, IOF arrested Ameen Omar Hamed (26) while present near the western entrance to al-Issaweya village, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out (3) incursions in al-Jabreyat neighborhood, Arraba village in Jenin, and Askan new camp in Nablus. No arrests were reported.

Tuesday, 05 May 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Qutna villae, northwest of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Kayed Taha’s (22) house and arrested him.
  • Around the same time, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Owa village, southwest of Hebron Governorate. They raided and searched Sameer Subhi Masalmah’s (38) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Obaid neighborhood, west of al-Issaweya village, northwest of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (7) civilians: Mahmoud Ramadan Obaid (23), Deya’ Ayman Obaid (24), Yousef Ali al-Kaswani (22), Abdullah Ata Derbas (18), Yousef Dawoud Muhaisen (43), Ameer Awwad, and Mahmoud Mohammed Obaid (23).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched the house of the Secretary General of the National People’s Congress, Belal Hashim al-Natsheh (57), and his director Mo’ath al-Ashhab (52). IOF took them to al-Maskoubeya investigation center in West Jerusalem.

Lawyer Ahmed Safeya said that the Israeli Magistrate Court extended the arrest of General Bilal al-Natsheh, the Secretary-General of the Popular National Congress in Jerusalem, and his director Moaz Al-Ashhab, to the next day, to present them to the court again at approximately 14:00. Safeya confirmed that the Israeli Authorities immediately investigated with al-Natsheh and al-Ashhab which deteriorated the health condition of al-Natsheh. Al-Natsheh was referred to “Shi’ari Tsediq” the Israeli Hospital for treatment with an ambulance.

IOF’s spokesperson announced that they arrested (7) civilians, who were distributing food aids to needy families during the Coronavirus pandemic in charge of violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.

  • At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into al-Towr neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched the Poetry Rania Hatem’s (38) house, and took her to al-Maskoubeya investigation center in West Jerusalem. IOF released her in the noon after investigating with her about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.
  • At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into Silwan, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched the volunteer in the Palestinian Civil Defense; Jadallah Saeed al-Ghoul’s (41) house, and took him to al-Maskoubeya investigation center in West Jerusalem. It should be noted that al-Ghoul was released after investigating with him about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF moved into Wadi al-Jooz neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched the Eng. Mustafa Amin Abu Zahra’s (68) house, Member of the High Islamic Authority in the Occupied Jerusalem, and Chairman of the Committee for the Care of Islamic Cemeteries in the Palestinian Endowments, and took him to al-Maskoubeya investigation center in West Jerusalem. In the noon, IOF released him after investigating with him about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.
  • At approximately 06:00, IOF moved into Jabal al-Mukaber neighborhood, south of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched the journalist Tamer Obaidat’s (34) house and took him to al-Maskoubeya investigation center. IOF released him after investigating with him about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.
  • At approximately 09:30, IOF moved into Beit Hanina village, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched, assistant Secretary-General of the Popular National Congress in Jerusalem, Emad Awad’s (48) house and took him to al-Maskoubeya investigation center. At approximately 15:00, IOF released him after investigating with him about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.
  • At approximately 12:00, IOF moved into Qafin village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched Mahmoud Fawwaz Ammar’s house and confiscated the surveillances cameras of his house.
  • At approximately 17:00, IOF moved into Obaid neighborhood, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Omran Lo’ay al-‘Aweiwi (16) and Mohammed Mahmoud (17), after severely beaten them, then they were taken to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 19:00, IOF moved into Silwan village, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Yazan Emad Syam’s (25) house and arrested him.

Wednesday, 06 May 2020:

  • At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Taqoua, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Yousef Jamal al-Sabbah (22) and Yaseen Yousef al-Sabbah (22), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 21:00m IOF moved into Silwan village, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched the volunteer in the Palestinian Civil Defense; Jadallah Saeed al-Ghoul’s (41) house, and took him to al-Maskoubeya investigation center in West Jerusalem. It should be noted that al-Ghoul was arrested for investigation on the dawn of the previous day after investigating with him about violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem.

III. Collective Punishment Policy

  • As part of the collective punishment policy applied by the IOF against the Palestinian families of those accused of carrying out attacks against the Israeli forces and/or settlers,  IOF handed a demolition notice for a prisoner’s family in Tulkarm. According to PCHR’s follow-up, at approximately 02:00 on Friday, 01 May 2020, IOF moved into Tulkarm camp and raided a house belonging to Mohamed ‘Alaa Jameel Risha (19), who was arrested and wounded after carrying out a stab attack on 28 April 2020 in Kafar Saba city in Israel. IOF handed Risha’s family a demolition notice. Meanwhile, many Palestinian young men gathered in the area and IOF fired tear gas canisters at them, under the pretext of throwing stones. As a result, many civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  1. Settlement Expansion and settler violence in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem
  • Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property for Settlement Expansion Activities
  • At approximately 07:00 on Thursday, 30 April 2020, Israeli bulldozers leveled an agricultural nursery in Joret al-Sham’ah, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Hasan Breijieh, Head of the Bethlehem office of Settlement and Wall Resistance Commission, said that IOF bulldozed Mahmoud Ahmed Abu Hammad’s agricultural nursery in Wadi al-Nies village, under the pretext of non-licensing. He pointed out that IOF notified to demolish other houses and barracks in different areas in Bethlehem.
  • On Thursday morning, Israeli bulldozers demolished a carwash in al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. Eng. Eyad Abu Surra, said that IOF moved into Um Rokba area, south of al-Khader village, and demolished Mohamed Ibrahim Da’dou’s under-construction carwash, under the pretext of non-licensing. He pointed out that Um Rokba area is exposed to a systematic demolition of houses and shops by IOF.
  • At approximately 09:30 on Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF moved into Qarawet Bani Hassan village, west of Salfit. They expelled Palestinian shepherds from Nowiatif area while breeding livestock and ordered them not to return, under the pretext of being state-owned lands. IOF also distributed 3 notices to stop construction work in 2 houses and an agricultural room in Nowiatif area, under the pretext of non-licensing in Area C, and gave them until 24 June 2020 (to hold a session during which it will be decided to either demolish the building or return it to its previous status). The distributed notices were as follows:
  1. Jala Kan’an Rayan, stop construction work in an agricultural room built of tin plates.
  2. ‘Abed al-Hakeem Mohamed Mer’I, stop construction work in his 2-storey-house.
  3. Yaseen Nabil Mer’I, stop construction work in his 2-storey-house.
  • At approximately 13:30, IOF moved into Khelet Nejarah area in Dirsitiyia village, north of Salfit. They distributed notices to stop construction work in Moneer Khalil Ahmed Mansour’s water well, under the pretext of working in Area C and in a natural reserve. IOF identified 10 June 2020 to hold a court session in Beit Eill during which it will be decided to either demolish the building or return it to its previous status.
  • At approximately 15:00, IOF confiscated equipment belonging to Ras ‘Atiyia Cooperative Assocation for Agricultural Development, claiming that the association excavated an artesian well between Ras ‘Atiyia and Magharet al-Dab’ah villages, which are classified as Area C. IOF also confiscated a mounted-crane truck belonging to the association while excavating a new well in Tayseer Mohamed Mara’bah’s land to alleviate the water crisis that encounters farmers in the area.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Monday, 04 May 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-‘Aqaba village, east of Tayaseer village in Tubas. They demolished Murad ‘Awni Saleh Jaber’s 36-square-meter agricultural room built of brick and roofed with tin plates  in al-‘Aqaba village, under the pretext of illegal construction in Area C.
  • On Monday, 04 May 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Kherbet ‘Allan in al-Shona area, north of Jericho. IOF were deployed in the area while the military construction vehicles demolished a 300-square-meter water pool. The Israeli Civil Administration officers dismantled Anwar Abu Jouda’s 160-square-meter barrack built of tin plates and used for breeding livestock before confiscating it, under the pretext of non-licensing in Area C. It should be noted that Israeli authorities and the Israeli Civil Administration Department handed Abu Jouda a demolition notice on 26 April 2020, upon Military order No. (1797), which gives Palestinians 96 hours to challenge before Israeli authorities. The new military order came into force in the West Bank on 1/4/2019, and its details hinder any attempt to challenge before the Israeli court.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Tuesday, 05 May 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Daher al-‘Abed village, southeast of Jenin. The Israeli Civil Administration officers hanged a notice on ‘Ameed Bassam Sameeh ‘Amarnah’s house door to stop working in his 220-square-meter house, under the pretext of non-licensing in Area C.
  • At approximately 14:00, Israeli authorities built a new road on the Palestinians’ lands, which were confiscated from al-Swati family in Faqiqis village, southwest of Hebron, to connect “Negohout” settlement with “Mirchalim” settlement outpost.  Israeli authorities seek to expand “Negohout” settlement on the Palestinian confiscated lands and prevent their owners from accessing them from many years ago. It should be noted that the Settlement Sub-Committee in the Israeli Authorities announced a detailed plan for the construction of settlement units, buildings and roads in the “ Negohout ” settlement on Palestinians confiscated lands, west of Dura city in Hebron. The detailed plan was published on the website of the Israeli Ministry of Interior on 14 February 2018. The plan No. (A / 1/521) allocates 291 dunums and aims to change land uses from agricultural lands to residential areas designated for the construction of new settlement units. This plan came to expand the settlement established on Palestinian lands since the early 1980s, and to build more settlement units.
  • Israeli Settler Violence
  • At approximately 01:55 on Thursday, 30 April 2020, Israeli settlers, from ” Hafat Gilad ” settlement, which is established on Surra village lands, southwest of Nablus, attacked Palestinians’ vehicles parked in front of their owners’ houses in the eastern area, western neighborhoods and on the village streets. They also vandalized Khaled Mohamed al-Hendy’s house walls and punctured the tires of 14 vehicles before leaving. PCHR keeps the names of affected persons.
  • On the same day, settlers, from “ Gilad ” settlement, attacked Amateen village lands, north of Qalqiliyia. They broke Riyad Sadeeq Beri’s 24 olive trees planted in al-Ahmar Mount area, north of the village.
  • At approximately 21:40 on Sunday, 03 May 2020, a group of settlers gathered in al-Zaytouna square, southeast of Nablus, under the IOF protection. They carried out riots in the area and no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:00 on Wednesday, 06 May 2020, Israeli settlers, from ” Homish” settlement, which was established on Burqa village lands, northwest of Nablus, attacked Harbi Mohamed ‘Ali ‘Abdo (50), from Beit Amareen village, while breeding sheep in Bab Wad area. ‘Abdo was severely beaten, his left leg was fractured and 20 of his sheep was stolen by the settlers. The village residents helped him and returned 250 of his sheep. They phoned the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) to send an ambulance, which took him to Rafidia Hospital.
  1. Closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement of persons and goods
  • West Bank:
  • In addition to permanent checkpoints and closed roads, this week witnessed the establishment of more temporary checkpoints that restrict the movement of goods and individuals between villages and cities and deny civilians’ access to their work. IOF established 38 temporary checkpoints, where they searched Palestinians’ vehicles, and checked their IDs.

Jerusalem:

  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Jabei’ village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem.

Bethlehem:

  • On Thursday, 30 April 2020, IOF established 3 checkpoints at the entrances to Janata and Taqou’a villages and in ‘Aqabet Hasna area, west of Bethlehem.
  • On Friday, 01 May 2020, IOF established 3 checkpoints at the entrances to Janata and Taqou’a villages and in ‘Aqabet Hasna area, west of Bethlehem.
  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint in ‘Aqabet Hasna area, west of Bethlehem.
  • On Wednesday, 06 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrances to Taqou’a and Janata villages, east of Bethlehem.

Hebron:

  • On Thursday, 30 March 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Bani Na’iem village, east of Hebron.
  • On Saturday, 02 May 2020, IOF established 3 checkpoints at the northern entrance to Yatta, at the southern entrance to Hebron, and at the entrance to al-Fawar refugee camp.
  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Ethna village, west of Hebron.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Monday, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Bani Na’iem village, east of Hebron.
  • At approximately 10:00, Israeli authorities closed with cement cubes Abu Touq road, which connects bwteen Beit Ummer and Bypass road (60).
  • On Tuesday, 05 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Beit ‘Awaa village, southwest of Dura, southwest of Hebron.
  • On Wednesday, 06 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to al-‘Aroub refugee camp and at the entrance to Bani Na’iem village (Wad al-Jouz).

Nablus:

  • On Friday, 01 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to Qasrah village, southeast of  Nablus, and on ‘Oreef-‘Asirah al-Qabaliyia villages road. IOF also closed Surra village entrance, southwest of Nablus.
  • On Saturday, 02 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint on’Oreef-‘Asirah al-Qabaliyia villages road, southeast of Nablus.
  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Dir Sharafi village at the western entrance to Nablus. IOF also closed Hawarah checkpoint, at the south-eastern entrance to Nablus, and tightened their arbitrary measures at Za’tarah checkpoint against Palestinians who cross the checkpoint and undergo thorough searches before being allowed to cross.

Jenin:

  • On Wednesday, 06 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint at the entrance to Ta’nak village, on Jenin-Hifa Street, west of Jenin.

Qalqiliyia:

  • On Friday, 01 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village and at the eastern entrance to Qalqiliyia.
  • On Saturday, 02 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village and at the eastern entrance to Qalqiliyia.
  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village and at the eastern entrance to Qalqiliyia.
  • On Monday, 04 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village and at the eastern entrance to Qalqiliyia.
  • On Tuesday, 05 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village and at the eastern entrance to Qalqiliyia.

Salfit:

  • On Monday, 04 May 2020, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the northern entrance to Salfit and at the entrance to Burqeen village, west of Salfit.

Ramallah:

  • On Thursday, 30 April 2020, IOF established a checkpoint on the main street, near “Beit Eill” settlement, which leads to al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah.
  • On Saturday, 02 May 2020, IOF closed with cement cubes the main entrance to Kafur Malek village, northeast of Ramallah, and prevented Palestinians from entering and exiting the village. The entrance was re-opened on Sunday, 03 May 2020.
  • On Sunday, 03 May 2020, IOF established a checkpoint, searched Palestinian civilians, and checked their IDs.

Israel: A Lab for “The New Vaccine Order”? Towards a Second Lockdown?

By Joshua Tartakovsky

Global Research, May 08, 2020

In the fight against corona virus, when trying to discern in what direction the Western world is going, it is almost always useful to watch the steps taken by Israel, the Zionist State.[1].

Israel is not only a threat to the people of Iraq [3], Lebanon [4], Syria [5] and Egypt [6], it is also quite possibly a lab of sorts for human experimentation. In recent years, it has focused its experiments on the people of Gaza, testing weapons on the Gazan civilian population subject to siege who dared to rebel and subsequently selling those weapons to the world [7]. But now, Israel may be turning its gaze to its own population, the citizens of Israel itself.

As coronavirus broke out, Israel became the first Western country to close itself off to all flights . It then proceeded to enact a total lockdown, preventing its citizens from going beyond 100 meters from their homes. By relying on the General Security Services (Shabak), the Israeli regime using the mobile phone information of the various users, knew the exact location of each and every citizen and could round him up should he leave the confined area. The regime sent its security services, military and police, to arrest people who were walking beyond the confined area for what it deemed an unessential need. Extreme brutality was enacted against ultra-Orthodox Jews, who dared to leave their homes and walk in the streets [8].

The coronavirus lockdown was a turning point in Israeli history. Israel has also kept the Palestinians of the West Bank under constant siege and curfew [9] to be imposed randomly at will since 1967 until the present [10]. This military regime was new to the people of the West Bank, but not to the Arabs living within Israel proper, who have experienced it since the founding of the state in 1948 until 1966 [11]. Now the Israeli citizens themselves were subject to curfew. They could not leave their homes.

Why did the regime enact such an extreme total lockdown, that was later followed by the rest of the world? One possible cause may be the three corruption charges placed against the Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. The lockdown resulted in the closure of the Israeli Parliament. When the speaker of the house was ordered by the Supreme Court to open up the parliament, he simply resigned. In this way, Netanyahu avoided being voted against in the parliament.

But can there be other explanations? Is Israel a lab for population control? Israelis tend to disobey orders and most certainly orders to keep them locked at homes. This time, they largely silently obeyed and stayed in their homes for weeks.

Israel Seeks ‘Jewish’ Non-Jews in Numbers Battle with Palestinians

Then there are the medical considerations. Some virologists argue people must be kept at home to slow the spread, others argue that staying at home reduces one’s immune system and makes him more vulnerable for disease. Either way, as Michel Foucault argued, using medicine to subjugate humanity has long been the norm. Giorgio Agamben argued how the state uses biological arguments to reduce our existence to bare life and suffocate us in a struggle for survival while relying on fear and on creating a state of exception that does not end.

Will the Zionist Regime conduct experiments against its own population? It did so in the past. The Zionists have experimented on Mizrahi Jews, especially children [12] on numerous occasions.

But in recent days, Prime Minister Netanyahu said that for the sake of safety, chips may be placed or inserted, he did not say, in children. The chip would alert the child every time he comes closer to a person in danger, just as in an alert system placed in a car, Netanyahu suggested. Is Netanyahu testing an idea that may be implemented later? Does he want to see if the people are willing to accept freedom of movement in return for vaccination and a chip?

For now the lockdown has been gradually relaxedNetanyahu is expected to stand trial on May 24. But the Health Ministry experts are already warning that a second wave may ensue, resulting in a new lockdown. If this is the case, will we see the same trend occurring around the world, with a second lockdown, more stringent than before, unfolding, and not to be released until citizens are vaccinated or given a chip?

On February 6,2020, Haaretz reported that most members of the high commission responsible for approving and supervising human experimentation were expected to resign. This was done due to the decision of Israel’s Health Ministry CEO, Moshe Bar Siman Tov, to promote a policy that would benefit pharmaceutical companies at the expense of the public interest, Haaretz reported. The Chairman, Professor Alice Shalvi, already resigned, Haaretz said [13].

With the committee cleared of conscientious people, will the Zionist regime move on to vaccinate Israeli children next week?

Israel was the first western country to ban all flights and enact an extreme lockdown. It was the first western country where the sitting leader recommended chipping children. It is worth paying attention to what may be the lab for the rest of the world.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

Author’s note: Thanks to Haim Yativ for his help with the article.

Joshua Tartakovsky is an independent journalist, a graduate of Brown University and London School of Economics. Currently residing in Minsk, Belarus.

Notes

[1] https://www.timesofisrael.com/anti-zionist-rabbi-gives-hezbollah-chief-in-beirut-gift-from-the-jewish-people/

[2] https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/20/jewish-majority-israel-villa-in-the-jungle

[3] https://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/26/world/middleeast/kerry-reminds-congress-netanyahu-advised-us-to-invade-iraq.html

[4] https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200213-lebanon-army-fires-on-israel-drones-forcing-them-to-retreat-2/

[5] https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-israel-just-admitted-arming-anti-assad-syrian-rebels-big-mistake-1.6894850

[6] https://egyptindependent.com/israel-reacts-to-reports-that-its-defense-systems-will-protect-the-gerd/

[7] https://www.haaretz.com/gaza-war-is-arms-industry-cash-cow-1.5258893

https://www.972mag.com/wars-on-gaza-have-become-part-of-israels-system-of-governance-an-interview-with-filmmaker-yotam-feldman/

[8] https://www.facebook.com/bry.gl1/videos/2885883214802366/

[9] https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20161002-israel-places-curfew-on-west-bank-for-jewish-holiday/s

[10] Some Zionists seek to refute this claim by arguing that the West Bank was occupied by Jordan between 1948 to 1967. What they neglect to admit is that while the annexation of the West Bank by Jordan was not recognized by most countries, Palestinians occupied roughly half of the seats of the parliament and enjoyed full rights as citizens.

[11] https://www.haaretz.com/jewish/1.5280516

[12] https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/blog/2017/6/22/israel-conducted-illegal-medical-experiments-on-yemenite-children-testimonies

[13] https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-members-of-israeli-committee-on-human-experiments-quit-over-health-ministry-policy-1.8500440

Featured image is from DesertpeaceThe original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Joshua Tartakovsky, Global Research, 2020

%d bloggers like this: