Israeli Soldiers Kill A Palestinian, Injure Another, Near Salfit

July 10, 2020 2:04 AM  IMEMC News

The Palestinian Health Ministry has confirmed, on Thursday at night, the death of a Palestinian man who was shot by Israeli soldiers near the main intersection of Kifl Hares town, north of Salfit in central West Bank, and added that the soldiers injured Palestinian teen.

The Ministry stated that the soldiers shot Ibrahim Mustafa Abu Yacoub, 33, with a live round in his neck, causing life-threatening wounds.

It added that Palestinian medics rushed the seriously wounded Palestinian to Salfit Governmental Hospital, where succumbed to his injuries.

The soldiers also shot and injured a Palestinian teen man with a live round in his thigh.

There were no protests when the soldiers opened fire at the Palestinians who were just walking near the main entrance of the town, which was blockaded by the army four days ago, and the soldiers have been preventing the Palestinians from entering or leaving it.

Eyewitnesses said Abu Ya’coub was just walking with a few of his friends when the soldiers targeted them with live fire without any cause or justification.

Essam Abu Yacoub, the head of Kifl Hares Town Council, said the slain Palestinian, and the wounded teen, Mohammad Abdul-Salam Abu Ya’coub, 17, were just walking in the area when the soldiers directly targeted them with live fire. The soldiers were on the military tower which was installed at the entrance of the town.

He added that a vehicle of colonialist Israeli settlers was in the area, and that the colonists also opened fire at the Palestinians.

Salfit Governor, Abdullah Kamil, said the Israeli army has escalated its violations against the civilians, and called on all factions, and the Palestinian people, to unite in facing the Israeli aggression against them, their homes, lands and their holy sites amidst the planned illegal annexation of large areas of the occupied West Bank.

“This despicable and ugly crime is just one of a series of Israeli violations against our people in every part of occupied Palestine,” Kamil added, “This is yet another cold-blooded murder; Ibrahim and his friends were just walking in their town; there was no reason for the soldiers to open fire at them in the first place, let alone to deliver the fatal shots.”

The slain Palestinian is the brother of Agricultural Engineer and the Director of the Ministry of Environmental Affairs, Marwan Abu Ya’coub.


PCHR: Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in Palestine (02– 08 July 2020)

Source

July 10, 2020 3:56 AM

Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR)

Summary

Israeli forces continued to commit crimes and multi-faceted violations against Palestinian civilians and their properties, including raids into Palestinian cities that are characterized with excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians. This week, IOF’s excessive use of force rendered 21 injuries among Palestinian civilians, including two children, during attacks on peaceful protests in the West Bank.

Furthermore, in Salfit, armed illegal Israeli settlers shot and injured two Palestinian civilians, one critically.

During the reporting period, Sa’di Khalil al-Gharabli (74), a Palestinian from Gaza, died in Israeli prison after spending 26 years in confinement. Al-Gahrabli died at Kaplan Medical Center in Israel, where he was recently transferred from al-Ramlah prison after his health condition deteriorated. Al-Gharabli suffered a prostate cancer, high blood pressure and diabetes, which he developed while in prison.

Over the past several weeks, the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem witnessed wide-scale demolitions and distribution of demolition notices of civilian houses and properties as well as confiscation of lands for establishing roads for settlements. This development comes as Israeli occupation authorities prepare to commence its annexation plan of large parts of West Bank territories.

This week, PCHR documented 145 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli and settlers in the occupied Palestinian Territories (oPt).

Israeli Forces shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity: Israeli forces shot and wounded 21 Palestinians, including 2 children, in excessive use of force against peaceful protests in the West Bank: 2 in Nablus; and 12, including 2 children, in Kufur Qaddoum weekly protests; and 7 were wounded in military invasion into Abu Dis village in occupied East Jerusalem.

In Gaza, opened fire at fishermen on 6 separate occasions; Israeli warplanes also launched several airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, one against a farm, and another on an agricultural land in al-Zaitoun neighborhood, eastern Gaza City. The airstrikes resulted in damage to the farm and nearby homes.

Israeli army incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians: Israeli Forces carried out 78 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, 71 Palestinians were arrested, including 4 children and a woman. Forces confiscated Palestinian property, including cash and gold jewellery.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli Forces stationed at Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing arrested a Palestinian from Gaza while en route to Tel HaShomer Hospital in Israel for a bone marrow donation for his ill brother.

Settlement expansion activities and settlers’ attacks: IOF continued its settlement expansion operations in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, PCHR documented 13 violations, including:

PCHR also documented 3 settler attacks that included firearm assault in Salfit that rendered 2 Palestinian civilians wounded, one critically, as well as arsenal attacks on private lands in Nablus, and racist verbal assaults in Hebron.

Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement: The Gaza Strip continues to suffer 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, since the PA ended security coordination with Israeli authorities in May 2020, hundreds of critically ill patients whose condition cannot afford delays in treatment were denied travel. This was amplified by the restrictions put in place by IOF since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, that had already had grave implications on the humanitarian and economic situation of the Gaza Strip population.

Recently, a very limited number of individual cases of patients who have obtained medical referrals and financial coverage to Israel were able to travel, and some others referred to Israeli organizations working in the field of health for assistance in coordination.

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.
 
I. Violation of the Right to Life and Bodily Integrity/Shooting and other Violations:

  • At approximately 09:00 on Thursday, 02 July 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed north west 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). Fishermen, as a result of that, panicked and sailed back to the shore. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 15:00 on the same Thursday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered in Bab al-Zawiyah area in the center of Hebron. They threw stones at Israeli soldiers stationed at a military checkpoint established at the entrance to al-Shuhada’a Street, which is closed. Israeli soldiers fired several rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at stone-throwers and chased them between commercial shops. As a result, a number of stone-throwers suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. No arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 20:30, Israeli gun boats stationed west of Rafah in southern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area (6 nautical miles). They surrounded 2 fishing boats and arrested 4 fishermen who were on board. Namely: Mohammed Zeyad Ali Syam (24), Emad Omer Mohammed al-Bardawil (22), Wadee’a Ismail Mohammed al-Bardawil (22) and Khalid Sameer Ali al-Bardawil (23).
  • At approximately 11:30 on Friday, 03July 2020, a peaceful protest took part from the center of Asirah northern village, north of Nablus, into lands threatened to be confiscated in al-Marj and Beit al-Zaki areas in Ebal Mount, east of the above-mentioned village. The protest was organized upon calls of the village residents and with participation of national factions in Nablus. The participants raised Palestinian flags and chanted slogans against IOF, settlers, Israeli annexation plan, and the U.S president Donald Trump’s Middle East plan. When the participants arrived at the area, a large number of IOF were waiting for them in the area. The participants performed Friday prayer in the above-mentioned land while Israeli soldiers were surrounding them and chanted slogans against IOF and settlers at the end of the prayer. IOF immediately suppressed the protest and fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 2 civilians were wounded; one of them was shot with a live bullet in his left leg and the other was shot in his chest with a sound bomb.
  • It should be noted that Israeli settlers recently established 2 houses in the area and brought their belongings and sheep to it and seized control over the area adjacent to a military camp established in the above-mentioned mount in premier to establish a settlement outpost, alleging that there is a historical shrine for them in the area, knowing that 6000 dunams of lands are owned by Palestinians in the area that is threatened to be confiscated.
  • At approximately 13:00, IOF stationed at the northern entrance to Kufur Qaddoum village, north of Qalqilia, suppressed a protest in which dozens of Palestinian civilians participated. IOF chased young men who gathered in the area, confronted them, and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 12 civilians, including 2 children, were shot with rubber bullets. (the names of the wounded civilians are available at PCHR)
  • At approximately 17:00 on the same Friday, an Israeli infantry unit stormed al-Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. Soldiers indiscriminately fired tear gas canisters between houses alleging that a military watchtower established at the camp’s entrance was stoned. Many civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 21:00 on the same Friday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered near al-Jabal area in Abu Dis village, east of occupied east Jerusalem, and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at an Israeli military border point established in the area. A large Israeli force stormed the village and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors and civilians as confrontations erupted in the area. As a result, 7 civilians were wounded. One of the wounded was shot with a live bullet in his body’s lower limb and, causing him severe bleeding and he was transferred to a local hospital. Other wounded civilians were shot with rubber bullets and they received medical treatment on the field. Also, 13 civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation and 3 sustained burns.
  • At approximately 23:30 on the same Friday, IOF stormed Zabuba village, west of Jenin. a number of Palestinian young men gathered in the center of the village and threw stones at Israeli military vehicles that raided the village. Israeli soldiers immediately fired tear gas canisters at stone-throwers and chased them. A number of civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation and they received medical treatment on the field. IOF also arrested Mojahed Nayaz Jaradat (17) and released him later.
  • At approximately 02:00 on Saturday, 04 June 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 ). Fishermen, as a result, of that, panicked and had to sail back to the shore fearing for their lives. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 17:00 on Sunday, 06 July 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed west of Rafah in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area (4 nautical miles). Fishermen, as a result, of that, panicked and had to sail back to the shore fearing for their lives. Neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 22:20 on the same Sunday, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a shepherds farm built on an area of 130 square meters owned by Mohsen Mohammed Salamah Abu Namous (53), in east of al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City. As a result, part of tools used for grazing the sheep and the farm’s outward wall were destroyed. No casualties were reported. The bombardment also caused partial damage in 3 nearby houses owned by Abu Namous family.
  • At the same time, Israeli warplanes launched 4 missiles at an agricultural land, east of al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City. As a result, civilians’ houses that are in the area sustained partial damage. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 16:30 on Monday, 06 July 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed adjacent to Khan Younis shore in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area. Fishermen, as a result of that, panicked and had to sail back to the shore fearing for their lives. Neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 15:00 on Tuesday, 07 July 2020, a number of Palestinian young men gathered in Bab al-Zawiyah area, set tire on fire, and threw stones at Israeli soldiers stationed at a military checkpoint established at al-Shuhada’a street, which is closed. Israeli soldiers immediately fired rubber bullets, sound bombs, and tear gas canisters at the young men and chased them. As a result, a number of stone-throwers suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • On Wednesday, 08 July 2020, Palestinian detained in Israeli prisons for the past 26 years, Sa’di Khalil al-Gharabli (74) from Gaza City, was pronounced dead in Kaplan Medical Center where he was recently transferred from al-Ramlah prison after his health condition Al-Gharabli suffered a prostate cancer, high blood pressure and diabetes, which he developed while in prison.PCHR communicated with al-Gharabli’s family after contradictory news about his death emerged the previous day due to the deterioration of his health condition. Accordingly, PCHR’s lawyer attempted to visit al-Gharabli in Kaplan Medical Center, but the hospital administration informed him that he should obtain the approval of the prison service. When PCHR’s lawyers contacted al-Ramlah Prison’s administration where al-Gharabli was detained, they stalled and refused his request for a visit permit.Al-Gharabli, has been detained since 1994 and sentenced to life imprisonment. The Israeli authorities disregarded the repeated calls for his release as is standard in such humanitarian cases, despite their knowledge of the deterioration of his health. Al-Gharabli was left to die in prison despite his age and having spent a very long period in prison.

 
II. Incursions and Arrests

Thursday, 02 July 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Ramin village, eats of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Khaled Adnan Mohammed Salman (28).
  • At approximately 01:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron and stationed in Ras al-Joura. They raided and searched Mohannad Hussain Falah al-Natsha’s (29) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into moved into al-Fawwar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched Alaa Mohammed al-Titi’s (17) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mahmoud Abdul Rahman Khalaf (26).
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into al-Saf street, in the central Bethlehem. They raided and searched Ramadan Zeyad Janazra’s (26) house and handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion” Settlement, south of the city.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Abu Dis, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Omar Yousef Makharza’s (17) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:05, IOF moved into Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohammed Omar al-Jamal (31), from his house in al-Marah neighborhood, and Nasser Zeidan al-Jada’ (32), from his house in Kharouba neighborhood, north of the city.
  • At approximately 05:30, IOF moved into al-Tiba village, west of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Aws Ibrahim Ali Jabarin’s (21) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 17:00, Israeli special unit arrested Nidal Na’eem Abu Akar (52), while present in Caritas area, north of Bethlehem, and took him to an unknown destination. It should be noted that Abu Akar is a former prisoner in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 18:30, IOF severely beat and arrested Ehab Mohammed Abu Sunaina (18), while present near Bab al-Asbat “Lions’ Gate”, which is one of the Al-Aqsa Mosque gates in Jerusalem, in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. Eyewitnesses said that IOF stationed at Bab al-Asbat, stopped Abu Sunaina to check his ID card before they severely beat him and arrested him.
  • IOF carried out an incursion in al-Ma’ajeen neighborhood, west of Nablus. No arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 21:10 on Thursday, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and sporadically opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area (3 nautical miles). As a result, fishermen panicked and had to sail back to the shore fearing for their lives. No casualties were reported.

Friday, 03 July 2020:

  • At approximately 05:00, IOF moved into Zububa village, west of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Hussam Jamal As’ad Jaradat’s (31) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 07:00, IOF moved into al-Taur neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Hijazi Nazmi Abu Sbaih’s (36) house and arrested him.
  • IOF carried out (3) incursions in Ein Yabroud and Bettin villages in Ramallah, and ‘Atouf village, southeast of Tubas in the northern valleys. No arrests were reported.

Sunday, 05 July 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron, and stationed near the UNRWA distribution center. They deployed between the Palestinian houses in the northern areas of the camp, raided and searched Abdul Karim Khaled Abu Sil’s (20) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli infantry unit moved into al-Ras neighborhood, west of Ethna, west of Hebron, coming from the western gate established adjacent to the annexation wall. IOF stormed 3 houses under construction, 200-meters away from the annexation wall, belonging to Farajallah family. IOF conducted a training session inside the houses that included shooting and withdrew from the area in the early morning.
  • At approximately 12:00, IOF stationed at a temporary military checkpoint at Jerusalem-Jericho street, the main road leading to al-Khan al-Ahmar village, east of the occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Saleh Majdi Saleh Abu Zeid (20), from Birzeit.
  • IOF carried out (2) incursions in Ein Yabroud and Bettin villages in Ramallah. No arrests were reported.

Monday, 06 July 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Kherbet Bani Harith, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Adnan Tal’at Hamouda (27) and Mohammed Motea’ Hamouda (24) and arrested them.
  • At approximately 01:40, IOF moved into Ein Yabroud village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Farhan Hosni Dahabra and Adel Nadeem Hoy, and arrested them.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into south of Hebron. They raided Mashhour Mahmoud al-‘Ajlouni’s house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:40, IOF moved into Deir Ghasana, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mo’tasem Naser Mes’hal’s (25) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Kobar village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Tha’er Tawfiq al-Barghouthi’s (29) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into Beit Rima village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched Saher Omar al-Barghouthi’s (57) house in al-Batha neighborhood, the father of the PCHR’s fieldworker, Huda al-Barghouthi. Huda said that IOF detained all the family in one room in the house and ordered her to call her brother, Emran, to surrender himself; otherwise they will arrest his family. Meanwhile, IOF accurately searched the house and confiscated a golden ring, cigarettes, and (1,300 NIS), and arrested Saher and his son Saddam (30). Later, IOF released Saher and Saddam and ordered them to surrender Emran. However, Saher al-Barghouthi received about 7 phone calls from the Israeli security officer to surrender his son Emran or they will storm their house again.
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF moved into Deir Qdais village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Sami Mahmoud Naser (22).
  • Around the same time, IOF moved into Bettin village, east of Ramallah. They raided and searched Lotfi Tharwat al-Kilani’s (26) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 10:00, IOF stationed at Beit Hanoun “Erez” checkpoint, north of the Gaza Strip, arrested Abdullah Shaker Mohammed al-Daghma (38), from Tal al-Sultan neighborhood in Rafah. The family of the detainee said to PCHR’s fieldworker that Abdullah, a father of 4 children, was heading to “Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer” in Israel, for a bone marrow donation for his brother Hani (45), who diagnosed with a blood cancer and receiving treatment several months ago in the above-mentioned hospital with a critical health condition.Al-Daghma’s family told PCHR’s fieldworker that after all family members did the necessary medical examinations; Abdullah’s results were the only ones that matched his brother. Accordingly, necessary procedures were conducted for his travel along with his sister. When they arrived at the Israeli side at Erez Crossing, ‘Abdullah was arrested while his sister was sent back to the Gaza Strip and quarantined according to the measures applied in the Gaza Strip.It should be noted that PCHR’s lawyer, in his capacity as legal representative of al-Daghmah, follows up with the Israeli authorities to determine Abdullah’s place of detention and to visit him as soon as possible.
  • At approximately 16:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Ra’fat Tareq al-Issawi’s (47) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 18:00, IOF moved into Silwan, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Mohammed Ali al-Ghoul’s (16) house, after releasing him from al-Damoun prison where he spent 12-months in. Meanwhile, IOF rearrested him, his brother Ibrahim (18), and their father Ali (44); Mahmoud al-Bazlamit (23), and Ali al-Khayyat (21); on charge of using fireworks. Three hours later, IOF released the detainees under condition of 50 days of house arrest, ban on any connection between them, and ban the celebrations for one month.
  • IOF carried out two incursions in al-Fawwar refugee camp and al-Samoua’ in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.

Tuesday, 07 July 2020:

  • At approximately 00:00, IOF stationed at Beit Fourik military checkpoint on the northeastern entrance of Nablus, arrested Mohammed Khaled Banhajawi (19) and Qusai Ishaq Shehada (21), from Balata refugee camp, east of the city. IOF took them to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Beit Rima, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (5) civilians: Saher Omar al-Barghouthi (57), Yehya Samer al-Rimawi (19), Ahmed Husam al-Rimawi (18), Amir Ahmed al-Rimawi (18), and Yousef al-Rimawi (19).
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (7) civilians: Majd Ibrahim al-Hamshari (23), Mahmoud Atef Abu Zeina (25), Eslambolly Reyad Bdeir (29), Nour Osama Yasin (23), Mathna Fo’ad al-Masri (22), and Hasan Ra’ed al-Jamala (26).
  • Around the same time, IOF moved into Anabta village, east of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Abdul Rahman Sabha (33).
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians: Mohammed Sameeh Jabr (28), Mohammed Adel Enaya (38), and Oday Yousef Hanini (Hasayen) (24).
  • At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Deir Abu Mesh’al village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mousa Naser Zahran’s house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Awarta village, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mos’ab Abdul Salam Awwad (19).
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into al-Fawwar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched Mousa Ahmed Abu Hashhash’s house, and no arrest was reported.
  • At approximately 18:00, IOF arrested Nahla Sa’eed Syam (31), while present in Bab Hatta, one of al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates, in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. IOF took her to one of the investigation centers in the city.
  • At approximately 21:00, IOF moved into Obaid neighborhood, northwest of al-‘Isawiya village, northeast the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Ahmed Harbi Obaid’s (29) grocery, and severely beat and arrested its owner and Eyad Dawoud Obaid (23). IOF took them to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out two incursions in Hebla and Qalqilia villages in Qalqilia governorate. No arrests were reported.

Wednesday, 08 July 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Qarawat Bani Hassan village, west of Salfit. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Salama Azzam Mar’i (21).
  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Kufur Qaddoum village, east of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohammed Rajab al-Qadoumi (35).
  • At approximately 01:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron, and stationed in Karbat Zaheda area. IOF raided and searched Shadi Mohammed Mousa Shaheen’s (45) house and his tobacco factory, which is licensed by the Palestinian National Authority, and confiscated (20) barrels of Glycerin, which is used in manufacturing the tobacco, and arrested Shadi’s son.
  • Around the same time, IOF moved into Eisa neighborhood, the western side of Hebron. They raided and searched ‘Aa’ed Mohammed Haimouni’s (30) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Jeet village, northeast of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohannad Jamal al-Sidda (25).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Obaid neighborhood, northwest of al-Issaweya village, northeast the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Mohammed Marwan Obaid (20) and Mohammed Esmat Obaid (19), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 04:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Surif, west of Hebron. They raided and searched Fadi Mohammed Ghuneimat’s (35) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 04:30, IOF stationed Bab al-Asbat, arrested Mohammed Yaser Abu al-Hawa (27), while getting out from the Aqsa Mosque in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City and took him to one of the investigation centers in the city. It should be noted that Mohammed is a former prisoner in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 09:00, IOF arrested the engineer, Bassam Khalil al-Hallaq (62), who is in charge of construction works, inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City and took him to one of the investigation centers. It should be noted that IOF arrested al-Hallaq several times on grounds of doing some construction works in the Aqsa Mosque.
  • At approximately 10:00, dozens of IOF and Intelligence Services moved into Daheyat al-Bareed area, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched the office of the Maps Department of the Arab Studies Society and arrested it’s director and the expert in maps and Israeli colonies, Khalil Mohammed al-Tafkaji (64), and took him to an unknown destination.It should be noted that al-Tafkaji is an expert in maps and Israeli colonies who follow up and document the settlers’ activities in the oPt, was arrested a few months ago for several hours before he was released.
  • At approximately 09:00, IOF arrested Emran Saher Al-Barghouthi (28), from Beit Rima village, northwest of Ramallah, while driving near Hilmich settlement with his father Saher al-Barghouthi (57), heading to Ofer settlement after being summonsed to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services. Day before, Saher was arrested and released on the same day from his house in Beit Rima.
    Saher al-Barghouthi said to PCHR:“My son and I were driving our car heading to the Israeli Intelligence Services office after my son was summoned during my detention. Before we arrived to Helmich settlement, west of Ramallah, an Israeli vehicle crossed our way and arrested Emran, and took the keys of my car and locked me in it. I shouted at the Israeli soldiers while they were severely beating my son, but to no avail. In the end, they took my son and one of the soldiers ordered me to take my car and immediately leave the area, without my son”.
  • At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched two houses belonging to the judge in the Sharea’ court, Dr. Eyad Mohammed al-‘Abbasi (54) and Jamil Eissa al-‘Abbasi (32) and took them to al-Maskoubeya investigation center. At approximately 19:00, IOF released them on condition that cut the connection between each other and 5 more persons.
  • At approximately 18:00, IOF deployed in Hebron’s Old City’s neighborhoods, arrested Khaled Ibrahim al-Batsh (21), awhile present in Khan Shaheen area, and took him to “Kiryat Arba’” settlement’s investigation center, east of Hebron.

III. Settlement Expansion and Settler Violence in the West Bank

a. Demolition and Confiscation of Palestinian Civilian Property for Israeli Settlement Expansion Activities

  • At approximately 10:00 on Thursday, 02 July 2020, Israeli authorities accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers and a vehicle of the Israeli Water Authority (Mekorot) closed the entrance to Ethna village, west of Hebron. IOF stopped 4 trucks for transporting water and confiscated them under the pretext they transported stolen water from the main water line located near the bypass road (60).
  • At approximately 12:00, IOF accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Khelet Mosbah in western ‘Aqrabah village, southeast of Nablus. IOF confiscated 2 diggers belonging to Shaker Shokri Lafi Bani Fadel and Fares al-Jama’ni, under the pretext of illegal working in Area C. Shaker and Fares were building an agricultural street in the area.
    Suhail Sameeh ‘Abed al-Fattah, a digger driver, told PCHR’s fieldworker that “At approximately 12:00, a digger driver and I were building an agricultural road in Khelet Mosbah area in western ‘Aqrabah village, southeast of Nablus, through 2 diggers belonging to Shaker Bani Fadel and Fares al-Jama’ni. During which, we found 4 Israeli vehicles carrying soldiers, who stepped out of the vehicles and approached us. They got into the diggers and forcibly ordered us to step out. They confiscated the diggers under the pretext of illegal working in Area C. IOF took the diggers to an unknown destination and left us in the area.”
  • On Thursday, 02 July 2020, Shalaldah and ‘Arameen families implemented the Israeli Municipality order and self-demolished their houses in al-Sahel neighborhood in al-Tour village, east of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Waleed Shalaldah said that Jerusalem Municipality court issued a decision to stop construction works in the 2 houses, under the pretext of non-licensing.On Wednesday, the Ministry of Interior stated that the demolition order must implement within 72 hours or the 2 families will pay the demolition costs estimated at NIS 10,000 for the municipality. Shalaldah pointed out that his house along with his neighbor ‘Arameen’s house were built few months ago on an area of 130 square meters. Hussain ‘Arameen said that it was supposed to live in the house with his wife and their 8 children.
  • On Sunday, 05 July 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles moved into Kherbet ‘Allan in al-Shona area, north of al-Jeftlik village, north of Jericho. IOF were deployed in the area, where they arrested Mousa Ahmed Salem Jahaleen while working in his agricultural land and took him to an unknown destination. Also, IOF confiscated Jahaleen’s bulldozer under the pretext of working in Area C.
  • On Tuesday, 07 July 2020, an Israeli police force accompanied with Israeli Municipality staff moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, for the 2nd consecutive day and hanged demolition notices on 15 residential and commercial facilities, under the pretext of non-licensing. Mohammed Abu al-Humus, Member of al-‘Isawiya Follow-up Committee, said that on Monday and Tuesday morning, IOF accompanied with Israeli Municipality staff moved into al-‘Isawiya village, where they hanged demolition notices on 15 residential and commercial facilities; some of them were under-construction while others were inhabited. He also pointed out that most of the owners obtained decisions from the Israeli Municipality to freeze the demolition.Abu al-Humus added that among the notified facilities were: Rafat Tareq al-‘Issawiy’s house that was bulldozed by IOF in 2013, houses belonging to ‘Eliyan, Dari and Mahmoud families, and Ihsan Abu al-Humus’s barrack. Abu al-Humus clarified that the Israeli Municipality photographed dozens of facilities and streets in the village. He added that the Israeli Municipality recurrent incursions and distributing demolition notices and summonses to refer to the municipality caused confusion and instability among the villagers, who attempt to license their facilities, but in vain.
  • At approximately 06:00 on Tuesday, 07 July 2020, Israeli military construction vehicles demolished a retaining wall in ‘Ein al-Jowizah area, north of al-Walajah village, west of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. An activist Ibrahim ‘Awadallah, from al-Walajah village, said that the Israeli military construction vehicles demolished a retaining wall surrounding Ahmed al-Atrash’s house in ‘Ein al-Jowizah area, under the pretext of non-licensing. ‘Awadallah pointed out that this area is exposed to a fierce attack by settlers, including demolishing houses and retaining wall, levelling lands, distributing notices to stop construction, and summoning dozens of civilians for investigation.‘Ein al-Jowizah area is located within the Israeli municipality boundaries in occupied East Jerusalem, and its residents are obliged to pay taxes “Arnona” even though they do not have a Jerusalemite identity card. Observers and experts in the settlement issue believe that the Israeli authorities are launching a campaign against al-Walajah village, aiming at completing the construction of the annexation wall and implementing new settlement plans, including confiscating more lands in favor of the so-called “Israeli National Park.”
  • At approximately 06:00 on Wednesday, 08 July 2020, Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews accompanied with IOF raided a bricks workshop in Wadi al-Jouz neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. The workshop belongs to civilians from al-Salimah, Marar, Srour and Abu Nab families. The Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews and IOF demolished the workshop and confiscated its contents estimated at NIS 500000, under the pretext of being in “National Parks” lands, where construction is prohibited.The workshop owners said that the Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews completely surrounded the industrial area in Wadi al-Jouz and raided the workshop. They demolished the workshop and confiscated its contents, including 3 bulldozers, 2 mounted-crane trucks, 14 tractors, concrete emptying and casting machines, tiles and stones. The workshop owners pointed out that the Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews handed them along with other workers summonses to refer to the Israel Nature and Parks Authority and Israeli Ministry of Interior and ordered him to pay the transportation and confiscation costs. The workshop owners clarified that the Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews implemented the demolition and confiscations before the court hearing, which is slated to be held in August 2020. The workshop owners pointed out that their losses are estimated at NIS 500,000, and many workers lost their work.
  • At approximately 09:00, IOF accompanied with a bulldozer raided Eyad Abu Subaieh’s house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. IOF vacated the house contents as a prelude to demolish it. During which, lawyer Sami Irsheed managed to freeze the demolition order, so the IOF withdrew and stole some of the house contents. Abu Subaieh clarified that his family comprising of 9 members lives in the house from 3 years and after raiding their house, they vacated all its contents for fear of demolishing the house. He added that after the lawyer managed to freeze the demolition for 21 days, they found that IOF stole a piece of gold belonging to his wife, in addition to mobile phones, devices, glasses, and other contents. Abu Subaieh added that he informed a soldier about the stolen items, then the soldier replied: “go and file a complaint!”
  • At approximately 10:00, IOF backed by Israeli military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Hamida area in Yatta, south of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officers demolished a livestock bran built of sheds and iron angels. During which, al-Najada family self-demolished their livestock sheds for fear of confiscating them. It should be noted that Israeli authorities sell the confiscated items in a public auction and if their owners want to recover them, Israeli authorities compel them to pay high financial amounts, impose fines on them and prevent them from using these items in Area C.
  • At approximately 11:00, Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews accompanied with IOF raided Omar and Ismai’l Samareen’s plot of land in Wadi al-Rababa neighborhood in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. The Israel Nature and Parks Authority’s crews and IOF demolished a room built of tin plates and used as a store of agricultural tools, under the pretext of non-licensing. Omar Samareen said that he built 20-square-meter room in his plot of land in Wadi al-Rababah neighborhood 3 years ago to put the agricultural tools in it. He added that he was previously handed several demolition notices, but he appealed the decision and the court did not issue a final decision. Samareen pointed out that the Israeli Municipality and Israel Nature and Parks Authority deprive the lands owners of using their lands, as construction in this area is prohibited.
  • At the same time, IOF handed a notice to seize 689 square meters belonging to Qarawet Bani Hassan lands, west of Salfit. This plot of land is property of Ratib Mohammed ‘Abdullah Khatib, from Sertah village. Khatib said that: ” I was notified by IOF and informed about the seizure notice by the municipality. On 08 July 2020, IOF hanged the seizure notice on my 698-square-meter land located between Bedia and Sertah villages. It should be noted that I previously filed a case in the court about removing a workshop and the court stop the demolition.”
  • At approximately 12:00, Israeli bulldozers demolished foundations of Eyad and Feras Nabil Da’na’s house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. It should be noted that Eyad and Feras implemented the Israeli Municipality order and self-demolished their house 3 weeks ago, under the pretext of non-licensing. Feras Da’nah said that IOF insisted on raiding the house and demolished its foundations, despite having self-demolished it 3 weeks ago. He clarified that both his family and his brother’s (11 persons) lived in the 140-square-meter house for the past 10 months.
  • At approximately 19:00, Israeli bulldozers cut and broke 200 olive trees in al-Shajarah area in Yasouf village, east of Salfit. These trees belong to the heirs of the Musleh family. Mohammed Musleh said that: “on 08 July 2020, Israeli bulldozes moved into al-Shajarah area in Yasouf village, east of Salfit, where they cut and broke 200 olive trees belonging to me and cousins.” It should be noted that IOF did not hand us any notices to demolish the trees and they suddenly raided the land and bulldozed the trees as a prelude to establish a settlement road.”

b. Israeli Settler Violence

  • At approximately 19:00 on Friday, 03 June 2020, dozens of Israeli settlers, from “Kiryat ‘Arba’” settlement, which is established on Palestinians’ confiscated lands in eastern Hebron, gathered in Palestinian agricultural lands in Wad al-Husain area, east of Hebron. Israeli settlers chanted racist slogans calling for killing Arabs. It should be noted that Israeli forces were present in the area and made no attempt to stop the settlers.
  • At approximately 14:00 on Saturday, 04 July 2020, Israeli settlers, from ” Price Tag groups”, set fire to Palestinians’ lands in the western mount in Hawarah village. As a result, dozens of dunams were burnt.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Sunday, 05 July 2020, at least 8 armed settlers opened fire at 4 Palestinian farmers working in their agricultural land in Khelet Hassan area in Bidia village, west of Salfit. As a result, Mohanad Omar Sadeq ‘Asi (52) was shot and injured with a live bullet that settled in his waist; and Dawoud ‘Abed al-Rahman Salama al-Wafiyia (58), was shot and injured with 2 live bullets in the shoulder and neck. Following that, Palestinian young men gathered in the area and confronted the settlers while the mentioned farmers were taken to Yaser ‘Arafat Hospital for treatment. ‘Asi was in critical heath condition, so he was referred to Plension Hospital in Israel.

PCHR: Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in Palestine(25 Jun – 01 July 2020) 2 Jul 2020

Source

Summary

Israeli forces continued to commit crimes and multi-faceted violations against Palestinian civilians and their properties, including invasions into Palestinian cities that are characterized with excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians. This week, Israeli Forces’ excessive use of force rendered 9 injuries among Palestinian civilians, including a child and a paramedic, during raids and attacks on peaceful protests in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, which have also witnessed wide-scale demolitions and distribution of demolition notices of civilian houses and properties over the past several weeks, as Israeli occupation authorities prepare to commence its annexation plan of large parts of West Bank territories.

This week, Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 155 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli soldiers and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt).

Shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity: Israeli Forces shot and wounded 9 Palestinians, including a child and a paramedic, in excessive use of force against a Kufur Qaddoum weekly protests against the occupation and settlement activities in the West Bank.
In Gaza, 5 shootings against agricultural lands eastern Gaza Strip were reported; and once against fishing boats sailing in northern Gaza sea.

Incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians: Israeli Forces carried out 74 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, 77 Palestinians were arrested, including 6 children and 3 women. In the Gaza Strip, IOF conducted 3 limited incursions into eastern Rafah, Khan Younis and Central governorate.

Settlement expansion activities and settlers’ attacks: IOF continued its settlement expansion operations in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, PCHR documented 5 violations, including:

PCHR also documented 4 settler attacks that included assault in Qalqilia and Salfit that rendered 3 civilians with bruises, and arsenal attacks on agricultural lands in Nablus and Ramallah.

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, since the PA ended security coordination with Israeli authorities in May 2020, hundreds of critically ill patients whose condition cannot afford delays in treatment were denied travel. This week, 2 children died because they were unable to travel for treatment abroad. This was amplified by the restrictions put in place by IOF since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, that had already had grave implications on the humanitarian and economic situation of the Gaza Strip population.

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.
 
I. Violation of the Right to Life and to Bodily Integrity/Shooting and other Violations

  • At approximately 09:00 on Thursday, 25 June 2020, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of Khan Younis in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands, east of Khuza’ah village, in eastern Khan Younis. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 17:00 on the same Thursday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered in agricultural lands, adjacent to al-Fawar refugee camp, south of Hebron, and threw stones at Israeli soldiers stationed at a temporary checkpoint leading to Bypass road (60). Israeli soldiers chased stone-throwers and fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a number of young men suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 22:00 on the same Thursday, Israeli gunboats stationed west of Rafah shore in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area (6 nautical miles). Fishermen, as a result of that, panicked and had to sail back to the shore. Neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 07:50 on Friday, 26 June 2020, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, opened fire and fired tear gas canisters at Palestinian shepherds present in lands adjacent to the border fence. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 13:00 on Friday, 26 June 2020, IOF stationed at the northern entrance established at lands of Kufur Qaddoum village, north of Qalqilia, suppressed a protest in which dozens of civilians participated. IOF chased young men, who gathered in the area, clashed with them, and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, nine civilians, including a child and a paramedic, were shot with rubber bullets. The child was shot with a rubber bullet in his shoulders and the paramedic was shot in his mouth while others sustained rubber bullets in their shoulders, except for one who was shot with a rubber bullet in his back. (Names of the wounded civilians are available at PCHR)
  • At approximately 13:15 on the same Friday, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of Khan Younis in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands, east of Khuza’ah village, in eastern Khan Younis. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:00 on the same Friday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered in Bad al-Zawiyah area in the center of Hebron and threw stones at a military checkpoint established at al-Shuhada street known as Checkpoint (56), which is closed. Israeli soldiers immediately fired tear gas canisters at stone-throwers and chased them between commercial shops into Abu al-Hums area. Confrontations between IOF and Palestinian young men continued until 17:00 on the same day, in which a number of young men suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 08:30 on Saturday, 27 June 2020, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, northeast of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip, opened fire and fired tear gas canisters at agricultural lands for 30 minutes. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Saturday, 27 June 2020, IOF stationed at Qalandia military roadblock, north of occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Ahmed Wajih Wahdan (22), a person with mobility impairment, and beat him severely, alleging that he has a knife. As a result, Wahdan sustained bruises all over his body. IOF also took Wahdan to “Atrout” settlement’s police station established on Qalandia village’s lands for investigation.Mohammed Wahdan, Ahmed’s brother, said that his brother, who is a roving street vendor at the above-mentioned checkpoint suffers from impaired mobility in his right foot and hand. Mohammed denied the news published by news agencies, including Israeli media, that his brother attempted to carry out a stab attack. Mohammed also said that his brother was arrested near the gate where he used to sell water. Mohammed added that according to eyewitnesses’ statement, Israeli soldiers ordered his brother to move backwards few steps and when he did, they immediately arrested him and beat him. It should be noted that Wahdan is from Qalandia, north of occupied East Jerusalem. Wahdan sustained a fracture in his nose, wounds in his head and foot and bruises throughout his body after IOF attacked him.
  • At approximately 20:00 on the same Saturday, an Israeli force reinforced with several military SUVs stormed al-Samou’s village, south of Hebron. They patrolled the village streets, stationed in its center, and deployed between houses. A number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at Israeli soldiers, who indiscriminately fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a number of stone-throwers suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. IOF withdrew from the village later. Neither arrests nor house incursions were reported.
  • At approximately 15:40 on Monday, 29 June 2020, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah in central Gaza Strip, opened fire and fired tear gas canisters at agricultural lands for 30 minutes no casualties were

 
II. Incursions and Arrests:

Thursday, 25 June 2020:

  • At approximately 12:00, IOF moved into Silwan, south of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Ali Ahmed al-Harsh’s (15) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Habayel village in Abu Dis, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Hamza Hesham Erekat’s (28) house and arrested him. It should be noted that Erekat’s cousin is Ahmed Mustafa Erekat (26), who was killed by the Israeli soldiers at the “Container” military roadblock last Tuesday, when IOF claimed that the victim attempted to carry out a run-over attack.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Nour Shams refugee camp, in Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Ahmed Izzat Zendiq (25).
  • At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (8) civilians: Mohammed Hamza Obaid (21), Mohammed Khalil Awwad (21), Awwad Ra’ed Kleib (24), Younis Wissam Abu al-Hums (18), Wadea’ Dawoud Alian (20), Khaled Dia’ Muhaisn (17), Yousif Tareq Darwish (22), and Ahmed Abdulsalam Abu al-Roumi (21).
  • At approximately 09:00, IOF moved into Jit village, northeast of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mo’aweya Ali al-Sidda (26).
  • At approximately 16:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Mahmoud Khudair Alian (17), and Mohammed Mousa Mostafa (21), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 16:20, IOF stationed near Ofer detention in Betounia, west of Ramallah, arrested (4) civilians while waiting out of the detention to welcome a Palestinian detainee, from Deir Jreir, to be freed. The arrestees are: Qusai Dawoud Olwi (22), Jehad Mohammed Ajaj (27), Aysar Zeyad Shuja’eya (26), and Ibrahim Abdul Wahab Olwi (23).
  • In the late night hours, IOF stationed at Za’tara military roadblock, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank, arrested an officer in the National Security, Ahmed Amin ‘Antari (38), from Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin, IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out (3) incursions in Ya’bad, southwest of Jenin; al-Nabi Saleh and Birzeit, in Ramallah. No arrests were reported.

Friday, 26 June 2020:

  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Burin village, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Ghassan Zeidan al-Najjar’s (28) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:45, IOF moved into Barqa village, northwest of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Ali Mohammed Saif’s (37) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 17:00, IOF stationed at al-Za’eem military checkpoint, east of the occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Anwar Sami Obaid (23), and took him to an unknown destination. It should be noted that the Israeli Authorities arrested and summonsed Obaid for more than 6 times in the latest months, and he spent up to 20-months in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 22:00, IOF deployed in Hebron’s Old City’s neighborhoods, searched and arrested Ahmed Hussain al-Natshah (18), while present near the building of Shari’a court. IOF took him to the police station at “Kiryat Arba’” settlement, east of Hebron.
  • IOF carried out (4) incursions in Jama’in and Kafr Qalil, southeast of Nablus; Jayous and Qalqilia, in Qalqilia governorate. No arrests were reported.

Saturday, 27 June 2020:

  • At approximately 11:00, IOF arrested the Head of the Aqsa Mosque Murabitun Committee, Yousef Ibrahim Mukhaimar (48), while present near al-Asbat Gate, one of the Aqsa Mosque’s gates. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 16:00, IOF stationed at Za’tara military checkpoint, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank, arrested Mo’men Mohammed Rihan (26), from Tal village, south of Nablus. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out an incursion in Kifl Hares, north of Salfit. No arrests were reported

Sunday, 28 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Abu Dis village, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Bilal Abu al-Zaki (24), and Qasem Halabeyah (26), and arrested them.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Ayda refugee camp, north of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Ahmed Mohammed Hammad’s (26) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron, and stationed in Daheyat al-Zaytoun area. They raided and searched Adnan Younis Abu Tabana’s (50) house and no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. They raided and searched four houses and arrested (3) civilians including a child and handed Ahmed Emad al-Badawi (23) a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem. The arrestees are: Ahmed Emad al-Badawi (14), Ahmed Mohammed Adawi (18), and Ahmed Ra’fat al-Badawi (23).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Taqoua’ village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Ali Yousef Jabareen (25), and Ahmed Salem Sabbah (20), and handed them summonses to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services.
  • IOF carried out (2) incursions in Qalqilia and Hebla villages in Qalqilia governorate. No arrests were reported.

Monday, 29 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Kahl, north of Hebron. They raided and searched Oday Hasan al-Khateeb’s (22) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Ya’bad village, southwest of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Osama Reyad Turkman (19) and Baha’ Adnan Abu Baker (27) and arrested them.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into al-Jalama, northeast of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Abdullah Ahmed Abu Farha’s (29) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles, moved into al-Thaheriya village, south of Hebron. They raided and searched Mo’ath Mohammed al-Qaisiya’s (32) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into Dura al-Qara’ village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Amjad Hassan al-Rabei’i’s (32) house and arrested him. It should be noted that the above-mentioned civilian was a former prisoner in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 04:20, IOF moved into Silwad, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched Awni Fares Hammad’s (40) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 08:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles and bulldozers, moved 100-meters from al-Mtabaq Gate on the border fence, to al-Shawka village, east of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip. They levelled and combed lands. At approximately 11:30, IOF redeployed again.
  • At approximately 08:00, IOF moved into Beit Hanin neighborhood, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched the house of the director of the “Women Development and Empowerment” association, Elham No’man Abu Sbaih (43) house and arrested her along with her son, Ahmed Khader Abu Sbaih (18). Elham’s husband, Khader Abu Sbaih, said that the Israeli “Yasam” special patrol unit aggressively stormed their house, they severely beaten and arrested his son, Ahmed, while he was sleeping. They damaged the house contents and confiscated several documents belonging to Elham, before they arrested her and her son, Ahmed.
  • At approximately 11:00, IOF stationed at Container military checkpoint, east of Bethlehem, arrested Rima’ Mahmoud al-Shabrawi (40), known as “Abu al-Reem”, from Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus, north of the West Bank. Rima’ works at the Palestinian Security Services, and he was taken to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 21:00, a group of Mista’arvim (Israeli Special Unit dressed like Palestinian), sneaked to al-Nasra street, northeast of Jenin, and stationed near al-Basateen park. They arrested a worker in the park, Hamza Mohammed Rahhal (20), from Jenin, north of the West Bank, and took him to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out (4) incursions in Deir al-Ghsoun and Tulkarem, in Tulkarem governorate; Derastya and Kifl Hares, in Salfit governorate. No arrests were reported.

Tuesday, 30 June 2020:

  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into ‘Araba, southwest of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Mahmoud Mustafa Merdawi’s (19) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Ayda refugee camp, north of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Shadi Mwafaq Badawna’s (35) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Nahaleen, west of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several; houses and arrested (4) civilians: Ahmed Mohye al-Dein Fannoun (24), Khaldoun Mahmoud Fannoun (31), Hassan Mohammed Najajera (23), and his brother Abdul Halim (20).
  • At approximately 08:45, IOF reinforced with several military bulldozers, moved 100-meters to the east of ‘Abasan al-Kabira and ‘Abasan al-Jadida villages,east of Khan Younis. They leveled and combed lands that were previously levelled amidst Israeli sporadic shooting and redeployed to the north of the border fence after hours.
  • At approximately 11:20, IOF reinforced with 8 military vehicles and bulldozers, moved 100-meters to the west of the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah in the Central Gaza Strip. They levelled, combed lands and done maintenance work along the border fence, and then headed to the east of al-Maghazi before they redeployed again at approximately 14:30.
  • At approximately 11:00, IOF moved into Beit Daqqo village, northwest of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Ali Dawoud’s (20) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 13:00, IOF arrested the lawyer Salah Hasan al-Hamouri (35), a former prisoner in the Israeli prisons, while present in a medical center in al-Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, north of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. IOF took him to an unknown destination.It should be noted that al-Hamouri is a French national, and he was sentenced to prison 3 times, in the first sentence he spent about two years before he was released, then he re-arrested again on 2005, and sentenced to 7 years, but he was released after 6 years and a half in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal in 2011. On 23 August 2017, IOF put him on administrative detention, he was arrested while working as a fieldworker for al-Dameer Association for Human Rights; al-Hamouri spent more than 11-months in the Israeli prisons.
  • At approximately 17:00, IOF moved into Silwan village, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Eslam Mas’oud Zaytoun’s (15) house and arrested him.

Wednesday, 01 July 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into several neighborhoods in the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched dozens of houses and carried out wide arrests campaign on charge of violating the law of the application, which criminalizes any work of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied Jerusalem. The head of the family committee of Jerusalem prisoners, Amjad Abu Asab, that IOF arrested (13) civilians from al-Issaweya, al-Tawr neighborhood, Wadi al-Jouz, and Silwan. The arrestees are: Mohammed Khalil ‘Amira, Ahmed Musallam Abu al-Rab, Oday Mousa al-Sha’er, Bassam Ghaith, Ra’ed al-Ashhab, Mohammed Obaid, Ahmed Mahayna, Ehab Abu Sbitan, Waleed al-Sayyad, Mohammed Khwais, Jawad Jouda and Akram al-Salayma.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Harbi Mohammed Dawoud (26), living in al-Ma’moun St., and Yazan Abdul Naser Zagha (19), and arrested them.
  • Around the same time, IOF moved into ‘Askar al-Balad village, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched Mansour Bashar Mansour’s (19) house and arrested him.
  • In the same context, IOF moved into Izbet al-Jarad, east of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Abdul Karim Zeyad al-Hamshari (31).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Thanaba village, east of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Suliman Husni Saleem Khraisha (37).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Tal village, southwest of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Sayel Tahseen Ramadan (40) and Ayoub Ahmed ‘Aseeda (40) and arrested them.
  • At approximately 03:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Ramallah, and stationed in al-Teira neighborhood, southwest of the city. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Elia’ Abu Hijla (20), a student at Birzeit University; and Haneen Nassar Fadayel (35), the wife of the prisoner Rami Rizk Fadayel.
  • At approximately 04:20, IOF moved into al-Jalazon refugee camp, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mahdi Naser Samad’a’s (19) house and arrested him.
  • Around the same time, IOF moved into Birzeit, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Amjad ‘Ahed Samhan’s (21) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 18:00, IOF arrested Amir Issa Za’tara (25), while present near Bab al-Sahera area in the central Old City of Jerusalem. He was taken to “al-Bareed” police station in Salah al-Dein Street.
  • IOF carried out (5) incursions in Ein Yabrod and Batn al-Hawa in Ramallah; Kreesa, Nuba, and Hebron villages in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.

III. Settlement Expansion and Settler Violence in the West Bank

a. Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property

  • On Thursday, 25 June 2020, Israeli military construction vehicles demolished a wall and 2 under-construction houses in ‘Anata village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. ‘Anata village council stated that IOF moved into al-Boq’an neighborhood and demolished Saied al-Khatib’s 2-storey under-construction house (200 sqm). The village council clarified that IOF also moved into al-Najma neighborhood, where they demolished ‘Alaa ‘Alqam’s 2-storey house (150 sqm) and a wall surrounding Majdi al-Fahidat’s house ( 80 sqm).
  • At approximately 13:00 on Sunday, 28 June 2020, IOF moved into Beit Iksa village, northwest of occupied East Jerusalem and levelled a plot of land. Eyewitnesses said that IOF, backed by military construction vehicles raided Hamayil family’s plot of land and levelled it. Eyewitnesses added that IOF closed the village entrance, surrounded the area and established a tent before levelling the land. It should be noted that Beit Iksa village is inhabited by nearly 2000 citizens and is surrounded by the annexation wall and the Israeli settlements.
  • At approximately 09:00 on Tuesday, 30 June 2020, IOF accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-Tawana, al-Rakeez and al-Mofaqarah villages in eastern Yatta, south of Hebron. They distributed 8 notices to demolish and stop working in houses, agricultural rooms, a water well, and a barn.
  • At approximately 06:00, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished ‘Atiyia Isam’il Mutair and Hayat Dawoud Muhasin’s houses in al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. ‘Atiyia Mutair said that Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a 40-square-meter building comprised of a room, kitchen and bathroom and built in May 2020. Mutair clarified that this building was attached to his old house built in 2013 to shelter his son family. Hayat Muhasin said that she was shocked when Israeli municipality staff raided her 80-square-meter house to demolish it.
  • At approximately 09:00, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished Yaseen Za’atrah’s house in Dir al-Sunna neighborhood in al-Mukaber Mount village, southeast of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Za’atrah said that IOF surrounded his house in the morning and forcibly got his family out of the house. They then started to demolish it over its contents. Za’atrah clarified that the municipality staff raided his house in 2013 and ordered him to stop construction. After that, the municipality imposed a fine of NIS 48,000 on him and he is still paying it.
    The municipality then hung a demolition notice on his house in December 2019. Za’atrah said that he headed to Israeli courts to appeal against the demolition notice, but in vain. He added that the municipality ordered him to self-demolish the house, but the construction vehicles’ owners refused to demolish the house, because it is located in a mountainous area. Za’atrah’s house sheltering 7 persons was built on an area of 84 square meters and comprised of 3 rooms, a kitchen and a bathroom.

b. Israeli Settler Violence

  • On Thursday, 25 June 2020, Israeli settlers threw stones at a vehicle belonging to Mohammed ‘Abed al-Hafiz Za’rour (28), from Sir village in Qalqilya. As a result, Za’rour, who suffers from epilepsy, started to lose conscious and received treatment in Rafidia Hospital while his vehicle sustained damage. Za’rour said;
    “At approximately 23:00 on Thursday, 25 June 2020, I was returning from my workplace in Jericho and heading to Sir village. When I arrived at Duma village intersection, I saw a vehicle carrying 3 settlers parked on the street. Two settlers stepped out of the vehicle and the third settler threw a stone at my vehicle, breaking the window. I was afraid and managed to flee towards ‘Aqraba village. I phoned one of my relatives who helped me and took me to the hospital.”
  • At approximately 14:00 on Saturday, 27 June 2020, Israeli settlers, from “Jaf’at Roneem” settlement, which is established in the eastern area of Burin village, southeast of Nablus, set Palestinians’ lands ablaze. As a result, dozens of dunams were burnt.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Sunday, 28 June 2020, Israeli settlers, from ‘Adi ‘Ad settlement outpost, which is established on al-Moghir village lands, east of Ramallah, set Palestinians’ lands ablaze in al-Seder area. As a result, 40 olive trees belonging to Rateeb ‘Abdullah Na’san were burnt.
  • On Tuesday, 30 June 2020, Israeli settlers severely beat Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Assaf (52) and Majdi Najem ‘Issa (45), from Bidiyia village, west of Salfit, while heading to Khellet Hassan area, northwest of the village. As a result, both of them sustained bruises throughout their bodies and received treatment later. Ibrahim ‘Assaf said;
    “At approximately 20:00 on Tuesday, 30 June 2020, my friend Madji and I headed to Khellet Hassan area, where we found 4 settlers. The settlers opened fire at us. We attempted to flee, but they caught us and severely beat us. I fainted and then regained consciousness while they were still beating me. They were speaking in Hebrew and I understood what they were saying. They wanted to kill me in Wadi Qana area, but they reversed their decision. They gave us our IDs and told us that they believed that we are security officers. We were released later and taken to hospital by the village residents.”

Israel Annexation Plan: Jordan’s Existential Threat

Jordan is being forced to confront a new reality with alarming cartographic and demographic consequences

By Emile Badarin

Global Research, July 09, 2020

Middle East Eye 6 July 2020

More than any other Arab state, Jordan’s past, present and future are inextricably linked to the question of Palestine. Jordan’s emergence is an outcome of British imperialism, which imposed the infamous Balfour Declaration and the Zionist settler-colonial project on the indigenous population of Palestine and the region. 

Settler-colonialism is the essence of the question of Palestine. All else is derivative. Jordan emerged out of this historical reality, and therefore, its present and future will always be subject to it.

The founder of present-day Jordan, Emir Abdullah bin Al-Hussein, successfully carved a new sovereign space in Transjordan. But this was only possible because of his cooperation with British imperialism and “collusion” with Zionist settler-colonialism. This tacit relationship resulted in mutual restraint between Jordan and Israel, even during their direct military confrontations.

National security interest

In 1994, Jordan and Israel signed the Wadi Araba peace treaty, turning their tacit understandings and secretive relationship into an official peace between the two countries – even if an unpopular one. This peace treaty would have been inconceivable without the 1993 Oslo Accord and the implied promise of Israel’s withdrawal from the West Bank and Gaza, which were occupied in 1967 from Jordan and Egypt respectively, to establish an independent Palestinian state.

Land repatriation and Palestinian statehood hold a high national security interest for Jordan. Only the achievement of these two conditions can halt the border elasticity of the Israeli state and its expansion eastwards, which poses grave geographic and demographic threats to the Hashemite kingdom.

Besides the strategic significance, a Palestinian state would allow a substantial number of Palestinian refugees displaced in 1967 to return to the West Bank, in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 237.

Yet, not only have neither of the two conditions been realised, but regional and international political dynamics have changed since 1994. In Israel, the political landscape has dramatically shifted to the far right, fuelling the settler-colonial practice of creating “facts on the ground” that make the prospect of Palestinian statehood and self-determination via the “peace process” a remote fantasy.

The political and material developments on the ground are complemented by complex regional and international dynamics. In particular, the Trump administration has taken a new approach towards most international conflicts, especially in the Middle East.

The Trump-Netanyahu plan (aka “the deal of century”) for Israel-Palestine promotes Israeli colonisation/annexation of the West Bank and sovereignty over the entirety of historic Palestine, as well as the Syrian Golan Heights.

Shifting geopolitics

Even worse for Jordanians and Palestinians, this plan enjoys the support of influential Arab states, especially Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which have stepped up their political rapprochement and normalisation with Israel.If Israel Annexes Part of West Bank, Palestine “Will Declare Statehood on 1967 Borders”

The EU, a staunch supporter and sponsor of the so-called peace process and two-state solution, failed not only to reach a common position on the US plan, but also to condemn Israel’s plans to officially annex any part of the West Bank.

Amid the changing international and regional politics, Jordan’s alliance with the US and EU has been a letdown. Jordan has become a victim of its own foreign and security policy, which has grown interlinked with the US and, more recently, the EU.

While half of this alliance, the US, is promoting Israel’s annexation and sovereignty over Palestine, the other half, the EU, is unwilling to act decisively.

The annexation is planned to take place while the entire world, including Jordanians and Palestinians, and the media are exhausted by the coronavirus pandemic. It provides the needed distraction for Israel to complete the annexation quietly, without effective local and international scrutiny and resistance.

Covid-19 has further entrenched the nationalist-driven trend in the Middle East. Even before the outbreak, the Arab world was consumed by domestic concerns, showing few qualms about the Trump-Netanyahu plan or recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.

Israeli expansionism

The feeble Arab (including Palestinian and Jordanian) and international response to the US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, has encouraged Israel and the US to press ahead and turn Israel’s de facto sovereignty over all of Palestine into de jure.

While this is all illegal under international law, it is a mistake to believe that empirical reality and time will not deflect, strain and fractureinternational law and legality.

Since 1967, the Israeli strategy has pivoted on two parallel components: empirical colonisation on the ground, coupled with the facade of a “peace and negotiations” public relations campaign to obfuscate the settler-colonial structure and market it to the international community, as well as Arab regimes.

With this strategy, Israel has expanded in the region both territorially, by de facto taking over Arab land, and politically, through overt and covert relations with most of the Arab states.

Only formal territorial annexation and gradual de-Palestinisation remains. The formal annexation of the West Bank, especially the Jordan Valley, officially torpedoes the century-old Jordanian foreign and security strategy of cooperation with its imperial patrons (Britain, then the US) and the Zionist movement, which evolved into a Jordanian-Israeli peace with an expected Palestinian buffer state between the two.

Another ethnic cleansing

It also puts Jordan face-to-face with a new reality with alarming cartographic and demographic consequences. The chances of another ethnic cleansing become a palpable prospect under the formulae of official annexation and a Jewish statehood in the entirety of Palestine, as articulated in the 2018 nation-state law meant to ensure a Jewish majority.

This is very much tied in with Jordanian fears grounded in previous (1948, 1967) and current experiences of forced migration in the Middle East. Against this backdrop, another ethnic cleansing in the West Bank, forcing a large number of Palestinians to flee to Jordan, is a real possibility. The transfer and elimination of Palestinians from Palestine are embedded in the settler-colonial structure of the Israeli state, which looks at Jordan as their alternative homeland.

While another population flow would be catastrophic for Palestinians, it would also adversely affect Jordan’s stability and future.

Beyond annexation, the Hashemite regime is witnessing a contestation of its custodianship of the Muslim and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, which constitute a significant source of legitimacy for the regime. Even on this matter, the US plan unequivocally appoints Israel as the “custodian of Jerusalem”.

After five decades, Israel’s grip over and presence in the West Bank is ubiquitous and entrenched. Most of the West Bank is empirically annexed and Judaised, especially the Jordan Valley, Greater Jerusalem, parts of Hebron and Gush Etzion. The pretence of the peace process and negotiations has thus become superfluous.

‘Considering all options’ 

Only against this background may one understand the depth of the trepidations that underlie the warning of King Abdullah II that the Israeli annexation will trigger a “massive conflict” with Jordan and that he is “considering all options” in response.

This warning does not reveal a strategy to respond to what constitutes a “direct threat to Jordan’s sovereignty and independence”, as the former foreign minister of Jordan, Marwan Muasher, put it.

It displays, however, the difficult decisions that have to be taken. Indeed, King Hussein was prepared to discontinue the Jordanian-Israeli peace treaty had Israel refused to supply the antidote for the poison its agents had used in an attempt to assassinate Khaled Meshaal, the former head of Hamas, in 1997. It remains to be seen whether the termination or suspension of this treaty and the realignment of alliances are currently options for Jordan.

The Jordanian response to Covid-19 has generated a unique, popular rally around the state – a perfect opportunity to conduct serious reforms to stamp out corruption and involve citizens in the decision-making process, in order to forge a nationally grounded response to Israel’s planned annexation of the West Bank.

Historically, the survival of the Hashemite kingdom has been at stake several times. But today, Jordan finds itself in an unprecedented political, security, economic and health emergency.

Whatever domestic, economic and foreign-policy decisions – or indecisions – that Jordan takes are likely to leave a long-lasting mark on the future of Jordan and the question of Palestine. Such existential decisions must be collective, with broader national consensus and real citizen participation.

*

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Emile Badarin is a postdoctoral research fellow at the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) Chair, College of Europe, Natolin. He holds a PhD in Middle East politics. His research cuts across the fields of international relations and foreign policy, with the Middle East and EU as an area of study.The original source of this article is Middle East EyeCopyright © Emile BadarinMiddle East Eye, 2020

Palestinians lose “legal ” battle to save Jaffa’s 200-year-old Muslim cemetery

Tel Aviv court rejects an appeal by Jaffa’s Islamic Council to halt construction of a homeless shelter on grounds of Al-Isaaf Muslim cemetery

Source

Palestinians had protested for weeks against the construction of a homeless shelter over the 18th-century Muslim burial ground (AFP)

By MEE staff

Published date: 7 July 2020 17:54 UTC

A Tel Aviv court has rejected an appeal by Jaffa’s Islamic Council to stop the city from building a homeless shelter on the site of an 18th-century Muslim cemetery. 

Judge Limor Bibi from the Tel Aviv district court revoked a restraining order on Tuesday that had stopped the city from building the shelter and ordered the Islamic Council to pay $2,200 in legal fees.

The Jaffa Islamic Council had filed a legal case claiming that the Tel Aviv municipality – which has jurisdiction over Jaffa – did not have a valid permit to build over the 200-year-old Al-Isaaf cemetery.

Last month an Israeli court ruled that the construction of the homeless shelter would be halted until a hearing on 22 July after weeks of protests during which Israeli forces beat Palestinian citizens who accused the municipality of erasing its heritage.

But the hearing was moved up to Sunday after the Tel Aviv municipality claimed a delay caused by the Islamic Council’s appeal had negatively impacted the municipality’s finances.

Tarek Ashkar, director of the Islamic Council, dismissed the Tel Aviv court’s ruling and said it was “legal acrobatics” and an example of how it was discriminatory towards Palestinians. 

“They could have said the permit was valid, but they didn’t say that,” Askar told Haaretz, who added that the city provided no further documentation for its claims. 

“The system is tipping the scales for the benefit of Tel Aviv’s municipality.”

Tel Aviv’s Mayor Ron Huldai welcomed the decision and said the “court decision proves that the city has worked and continues to work with sensitivity and according to the law”.

Al-Isaaf cemetery, which lies just north of the walls of Old Jaffa near the Hassan Bek Mosque, was built almost 200 years ago. Despite not being in active use for nearly 90 years, the cemetery holds hundreds of Palestinian tombs.

Jaffa was once an epicentre of the Palestinian economy, with some 120,000 people living in and around the flourishing city on the Mediterranean Sea in 1948.

Almost 95 percent of the Palestinian population of Jaffa and its surrounding villages were expelled by Zionist militias during the Nakba, or the catastrophe, that year.

Over the decades, Jaffa’s historic neighbourhoods were progressively demolished and the city shrank into a small town that was then absorbed by the municipality of Tel Aviv.

Related

Statement: “Death Of Palestinian Detainee Not Confirmed”

Source

 July 7, 2020 9:28 AM  Saed Bannoura

The Israeli Prison Service has not yet officially informed the Palestinians or the Red Cross of the death of a Palestinian detainee in prison, while the current information reveals that the detainee is likely clinically dead. However, despite various conflicting reports, many confirming the detainee’s death.

Former political prisoner, researcher and the head of the Studies and Documentation Committee of the Palestinian Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees, has informed the International Middle East Media Center (IMEMC) that the Israeli Prison Service has not informed to any party that the detainee, Sa’ad al-Gharabily, 75, has died, and only announced he is in a critical condition, or possibly clinically dead.

Ferwana added that his department is still awaiting an official confirmation about the detainee’s condition, and held Israel fully responsible for his life, especially amidst the lack of proper medical treatment to the detainees.

“We can only hope that al-Gharabily is alive, and we wish him a full recovery; we also hold Israel fully responsible for what happens to him,” Ferwana told the IMEMC, “All that we know, especially since Israel is not providing much information, is that the detainee is still alive, but in a very critical condition.”

It is worth mentioning that al-Gharabily is from the Gaza Strip, and was taken prisoner in the year 1994, before he was sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of participating in attacks against Israeli occupation targets.

Ferwana voiced an appeal to media outlets to refrain from publishing unconfirmed reports, that are largely conflicting and only cause more agony and suffering to the families of the detainees. His statements came after various media outlets, journalists and activists, published reports, or posts, claiming the detainee has died in prison, even though no official confirmation was ever made.

“The issue of the detainees is a humanitarian cause; it is not a subject for media outlets to deal with it as breaking news, competing on who publishes first before all others,” Ferwana told the IMEMC, “Media outlets and social media activists must be aware of the facts, and should never publish such reports before they are officially confirmed or denied.”

“It is already always difficult to get any news from the Israeli prisons, detention centers, and interrogation facilities. Israel’s lack of cooperation with human rights groups and the Red Cross, makes getting such news nearly impossible,” Ferwana said, “I call on all individuals, media outlets, officials, institutions, and political factions to refrain from making statements and publishing hasty reports without official confirmations. We also need to always respect the families, and what they go through in these conditions.”

“A martyr is not a number, is not a new breaking news item; we need to wait; we need to confirm before we make official statements and issue press releases,” Ferwana concluded, “to those who just want to publish, those who claim to know the full truth, if I could whisper in their ears, I would say please have compassion and respect to the feeling of others, respect the people, respect their minds, and then, they will respect you back.”

ماذا بعد؟ الفلسطينيّون يتلاحمون ترامب يرتبك، نتنياهو يتريّث…‏

د. عصام نعمان

تلاقى الفلسطينيون بعد طول تباعد. تلاقيهم على طريق اتحادهم كان مفاجأتهم لأنفسهم كما لأعدائهم. القادة الصهاينة ومن ورائهم نظراؤهم الأميركيون راهنوا طويلاً على انقسام الفلسطينيين على أنفسهم وتنافس فصائل المقاومة على الصدارة والنفوذ.

صحيح أنّ الفلسطينيين تأخروا في التلاقي على طريق توحيد الموقف وتفعيل المقاومة، لكنهم استدركوا تقصيرهم وباشروا التلاحم في وجه الأعداء في الوطن والشتات. مجرد التلاقي، لا سيما بين «فتح» و«حماس»، أقلق الأعداء واضطرهم الى إعادة النظر بحساباتهم.

كان بنيامين نتنياهو يتطلع الى بدء عملية ضمّ مناطق في الضفة الغربية بحلول الأول من تموز/ يوليو، لكن في اليوم نفسه صدر بيان عن حكومته يقول إنه عقد اجتماعاً مع كبار المسؤولين في المؤسسة الأمنية لمناقشة مسألة فرض السيادة على مناطق الضفة. من التعهّد القاطع بالتنفيذ تريّث نتنياهو بسرعة لافتة متحوّلاً الى مناقشة ترتيبات الضمّ.

مخطط نتنياهو للضمّ تعرّض لانتقادات دولية شديدة. الأمم المتحدة والاتحاد الأوروبي والفاتيكان فضلاً عن دول كثيرة عربية واسلامية وأجنبية قالت إن ضمّ «إسرائيل» مناطق فلسطينية سينتهك القانون الدولي ويقوّض الاحتمالات (المتضائلة أصلاً) لإقامة دولة فلسطينية مستقلة قابلة للحياة.

حتى الولايات المتحدة، حليفة «إسرائيل» وحاضنتها التاريخية، أبدت مداورةً، تحفظاً بشأن بدء عملية الضمّ في الاول من تموز. كبار مسؤوليها السياسيين والأمنيين عقدوا اجتماعات متتالية لتخريج موقف يحفظ ماء وجه الرئيس المرتبك والغارق، وسط احتدام معركته الانتخابية، في طوفان من الانتقادات والتشنيعات على مستوى العالم برمته. في غمرة هذا الحَرج، تهرّب وزير الخارجية مايك بومبيو بالقول إن واشنطن تعتبر مسألة الضم قراراً يخصّ «إسرائيل».

قبل تصريح بومبيو وبعده كان المسؤولون الإسرائيليون قد انقسموا حول مسألة تنفيذ الضم وتداعياته. بعضهم رفضه لأنه ينطوي بالضرورة على وضع عشرات آلاف الفلسطينيين تحت سيادة الكيان الصهيوني ما يؤدي لاحقاً الى قيام دولة ثنائية القومية وذات اكثرية عربية ومسلمة بين سكانها. بعضهم الآخر، وجلّه من أهل اليسار، تخوّف من ان يؤدي الضمّ ليس الى تقويض يهودية الدولة فحسب بل الى التمييز الشديد ضد «مواطنيها» من غير اليهود ايضاً ما يرسّخ صورتها كدولة ابارتهايد (تمييز عنصري) مكروهة من الدول والشعوب.

صحيح أن الضمّ الآن أرجئ، لكنه لم يُلغَ قط. كثيرون من المراقبين في:

«إسرائيل» وفي اميركا يعتقدون ان كلاًّ من نتنياهو وترامب مضطر الى السير مجدّداً في مخطط الضمّ، ولو الجزئي، لاعتبارات شخصية وسياسية. نتنياهو مهجوس بمسألة ملاحقته جزائياً بتُهَم الفساد والرشوة ما يستوجب بقاءه رئيساً للحكومة لضمان تبرئته من جهة، ومن جهة أخرى لتعزيز طموحه الى ان تتخطى سمعته وإنجازاته تراث دايفيد بن غوريون، فيصبح هو «ملك إسرائيل» في تاريخها المعاصر!

ترامب يؤرقه شبقه المضني للفوز بولاية رئاسية ثانية ما يدفعه الى تأمين تصويت جماعتين كثيفتي العدد والنفوذ الى جانبه، الإنجيليين واليهود، وذلك بتجديد تحبيذه البدء بتنفيذ قرار الضم. لهذا الغرض، صعّدت جماعات الإنجيليين ضغوطها على ترامب من أجل الدفع قُدُماً بمخطط ضم مناطق الضفة الغربية الى «إسرائيل». أحد أبرز قياديّي هؤلاء مايك ايفانس قال لصحيفة «يديعوت احرونوت» (2020/7/2) «إن قدرة الرئيس ترامب على الفوز في انتخابات الرئاسة ستُحسم بأصوات الانجيليين، ولن يكون بمقدوره الفوز من دوننا (..) وأيّ مستشار يحثه على التراجع عن تأييد الضمّ يتسبّب بإبعاده خارج البيت الأبيض (…) ولو كنتُ مكان نتنياهو لضغطت على ترامب من أجل تنفيذ الضم قبل انتخابات الرئاسة الأميركية».

ماذا على الصعيد الفلسطينيّ؟

لم يتضح بعد ما جرى الاتفاق على اعتماده عملياً لمواجهة قرار الضمّ حتى لو كان جزئياً. غير أن ما يمكن استخلاصه من تصريحات وخطابات ومواقف قادة فصائل المقاومة المؤيدة لاجتماع قياديي «فتح» و«حماس» اتفاقهم على توحيد الجهود الرامية الى مقاومة «صفقة القرن» بكل أبعادها وتحدياتها. لن يكشف، بطبيعة الحال، ايٌّ من فصائل المقاومة القرارات السريّة العملانية التي يمكن ان يكون قادة «فتح و«حماس» قد اتخذوها، منفردين او متحدين، لمواجهة عملية الضمّ ميدانياً. إلاّ ان نبرة القياديين في تصريحاتهم من جهة وتسريبات أو تخمينات بعضهم من جهة أخرى توحي بأن ثمة توافقاً على إشعال انتفاضة شعبية مديدة ضدّ الاحتلال في الضفة الغربية بالإضافة الى جميع ساحات الوجود الفلسطيني بما في ذلك الأراضي المحتلة العام 1948.

هل ثمة اتفاق بين كبريات الفصائل الفلسطينية على مواجهة اعتداءات «إسرائيل» بهجوم معاكس على جميع الجبهات في الشمال والجنوب والشرق بالاتفاق مع قيادات محور المقاومة؟

لا جواب صريحاً في هذا المجال من أيّ قيادي فلسطيني وازن. غير انّ مراقبين مقرّبين من قيادات المقاومة، الفلسطينية والعربية، يستبعدون ذلك لأسباب ثلاثة:

أوّلها لأنّ فصائل المقاومة جميعاً منشغلة داخل أقطارها بأزمات وتحديات سياسية واقتصادية واجتماعية معقدة تضطرها الى اعتبارها أولى بالاهتمام في الوقت الحاضر.

ثانيها لأنّ «إسرائيل» ذاتها تبدو منشغلة بمشكلات داخلية ليس أقلها اندلاع موجة ثانية من جائحة كورونا، كما هي قلقة من تحوّل ميزان الردع في الصراع الى كفة المقاومة، لا سيما حزب الله، بعد ثبوت امتلاكه عدداً وفيراً من الصواريخ الدقيقة.

ثالثها لعدم توافر أوضاع دولية ملائمة لـِ «إسرائيل» لتوسيع رقعة تحديها للمجتمع الدولي ولأحكام القانون الدولي المتعارضة مع سياسة الضمّ والتهويد واقتلاع السكان الأصليين.

غير انّ هذه الاعتبارات لا تصمد امام تصميم رئيس أميركي بالغ العنهجية والتطرف ويصعب التنبؤ بنزواته وتصرفاته، ورئيس حكومة إسرائيلي مُترع بحب التسلّط والصدارة وبرغبة جامحة لتغطية ارتكاباته الجنائية والهروب من حكم العدالة.

*نائب ووزير سابق.

Israeli Settlers Shoot, Injure Two Palestinian Youths near Salfit

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 Ali Salam

Illegal Israeli settlers shot and injured two Palestinian youths, on Sunday, in Bidya village, west of Salfit, in the northern West Bank, the Palestinian Information Center reported.

Local sources said that a group of Israeli colonists attacked Palestinian families in Khillat Hassan area, opening fire at them, resulting in the injury of two young men.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health reported that one of the men was shot in the abdomen, while the other was shot in the shoulder, both men are currently in hospital, and both injuries were described as “moderate”.

Palestinian civilians were gathered on a threatened land, near the village, when illegal Israeli settlers opened fire at the young men, injuring two of them.

According to Palestinian WAFA News Agency, the first of the two men sustained an injury in the pelvis, while the other one sustained a light injury in the neck and a fracture in his shoulder.

The two men were reported to have been moved to nearby Salfit Governmental Hospital.

Hundreds of thousands of illegal colonialist settlers live in hundreds of colonies across the occupied West Bank, in violation of International Law.

~ PIC, WAFA

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ROBERT INLAKESH ON HIS DOCUMENTARY, “STEAL OF THE CENTURY: TRUMP’S PALESTINE-ISRAEL CATASTROPHE”

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Robert Inlakesh is a Documentary Filmmaker, Journalist, and Middle-East  Analyst

I recently spoke with him on his visits to Occupied Palestine nd in  particular his two-part documentary, “Steal Of The Century’: Trump’s  Palestine-Israel Catastrophe” , the first part of which he released on  June 5.

Watch part 1

Twitter: @falasteen47

Facebook/Youtube: Robert Inlakesh

Robert’s Patreon

‘Set Them All Free’: Child Detention in American and Israeli Prisons

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June 30, 2020

By Benay Blend

Referring to the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic, a federal judge in Los Angeles on June 26, 2020, ordered the release of migrant children detained in the country’s three family detention centers. Some have been held since last year.

The mandate refers to children who have been held for more than 20 days in centers run by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, two in Texas and one in Pennsylvania. According to the ruling, 124 children were living in those places since June 8, and some of them have tested positive for the virus. This number is separate from the US Department of Health and Human Services centers for unaccompanied children that contained around 1,000 children in early June.

In her order, Judge Dolly M. Gee of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California denounced the Trump administration for ignoring recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). To stall the spread of the virus in detention facilities, the agency had endorsed social distancing, the wearing of masks, and treatment for those who tested positive.

“The family residential centers are on fire,” she wrote, adding that this is no time for “half measures.”

Because of the pandemic, Judge Gee wrote, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) should work with “all deliberate speed” to release the children either together with their parents or sent to family sponsors.

“Some detained parents facing deportation brought their children to this country to save them from rampant violence in their home countries,” said Peter Schey, counsel for the class of detained children, “and would prefer to see their child released to relatives here rather than being deported with the parent to countries where children are routinely kidnapped, beaten and killed.”

Amy Maldonado, an attorney who works with detained families, said Gee “clearly recognized that the government is not willing to protect the health and safety of the children, which is their obligation.”

“They need to make the sensible choice and release the parents to care for their children,” she said of the government. Under terms of the Flores Settlement, the government can be forced into releasing children but not their parents, so that family separation occurs again unless the immigration rights group demands the release of entire families from detention.

More than 2,500 people in ICE holdings have tested positive for COVID-19. Although approximately 900 people considered at medical risk have been released, ICE refused to discharge more because it deems most of the family detainees to be “flight risks” because they are set to either be deported or appear in court.

Family separation has a long history in the United States beginning with children taken from their parents during slavery in the American South. As Shaun King observes, while children locked in cages is surely an “abomination,” it is also as deeply entrenched in American culture as “Facebook and Disneyland” seem to be.

During the 250 years of slavery in the American South millions of African family members were separated from each other. Ripped from their homelands, sold at auction blocks across the South, African parents, children, brothers and sisters would do their best to reunite after the Civil War.

Not only were enslaved African children sold away from their families, claims King, but Native American children, too, were forcibly sent to boarding schools where they suffered under harsh discipline and corporal punishment. In Our History is the Future (2019), historian Nick Estes (Lower Brule Sioux Tribe) writes that “the system…was as much about taking the children hostage as it was using them as leverage to coerce the behavior of reservation leadership,” (p. 118) and this continued until the 1970s.

Finally, in The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Color-Blindness (2010), Michelle Alexander traces the “rebirth of a caste-like system” that relegates millions of African American prisoners to a “permanent second-class status” by robbing them of their rights won in the 1960s. By focusing on the War on Drugs, Alexander shows that the U.S. criminal justice system is little more than a “contemporary system of racial control” that targets black men for petty crimes and consequently decimates communities.

Given these examples, it’s clear that “this nation has mastered separating parents and children,” as King asserts, but in fact, it is guilty of so much more. As he explains: “What’s happening right now in our country is, without question, a human rights catastrophe.” Yet, when others respond with statements like: “This is not the American I know and love,” his immediate reply is: It is.

It is also the same America that funds and supports the detention of Palestinian children in Israeli military jails. As reported by the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, Israel detains and prosecutes between 500 and 700 Palestinian children in military courts per year.

Not only do such courts lack due process guarantees, they have a conviction rate of 99.74 percent. During their time in the penal system, these children are subjected to various kinds of physical and emotional abuse when neither their parents nor their lawyers are there to protect them.

According to Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network, conditions inside Israeli jails are particularly deadly now due to systemic medical neglect in the face of the coronavirus. If this motivated the release of children from detention in America, surely Palestinian prisoners, especially the youth, deserve the same consideration.

On May 1, 2019, Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) reintroduced legislation in Congress that would prohibit US tax dollars from funding the Israeli military detention of Palestinian children. H.R. 2407, Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living Under Military Occupation Act, is the follow-up to H.R. 4391, in the last Congress, which totaled 31 sponsors.

“By introducing H.R. 2407,” writes Ramzy Baroud,

“McCollum has broken several major taboos in the US government. She unapologetically characterizes Israel’s violations of Palestinian rights with all the correct terms – ‘torture’, ‘abuse’, and so on… Moreover, she calls for conditioning US military support for Israel on the latter’s respect for human rights.”

The time is ripe. The Palestinian rights movement, writes Alex Kane, has helped push Democratic public opinion away from unqualified support for Israel. Jamaal Bowman’s declared victory over Rep. Engel this past week shows this to be the case.

Rep. McCollum agrees:

“I strongly believe there is a growing consensus among the American people that the Palestinian people deserve justice, equality, human rights, and the right to self-determination. It is time to stand with Palestinians, Americans, Israelis, and people around the world to reject the destructive, dehumanizing, and anti-peace policies of Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Trump.”

Neither Bowman’s campaign nor McCollum’s stance represent a forum for challenging the foundation of the US-Israel relationship, but these steps do question Israel’s regard for human rights. As Justine Teba (Tesuque and Santa Clara Pueblo) notes, it took a movement to free the children. It happened because of ongoing protests at ICE detentions centers, these movements aren’t being talked about in mainstream media because they’re are undeniable PROOF of movement power and PROOF that this is how we get things done in an unjust system. I see the see first-hand accounts of these actions online. Do you think the state just decided on a whim to let their child prisoners free?”

In These Chains Will Be Broken: Palestinian Stories of Struggles and Defiance in Israeli Prisons (2020), Ramzy Baroud records a total of 5,250 political prisoners in Israel, a number he predicts will be growing because Palestinians will continue to resist.

Expect an increase, too, because on July 1, various Palestinian factions and support groups have called for a Day of Rage to protest the annexation of all illegal settlements in the West Bank and large swaths of the Jordan Valley, consuming the remaining areas under Palestinian control. Here in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Red Nation has called for a car parade ending with a rally at Tiquex Park.

If justice is truly indivisible, in the words of Martin Luther King, then all prisoners—in America and Occupied Palestine–deserve the same demands to ensure their release from COVID-infested prisons.

– Benay Blend earned her doctorate in American Studies from the University of New Mexico. Her scholarly works include Douglas Vakoch and Sam Mickey, Eds. (2017), “’Neither Homeland Nor Exile are Words’: ‘Situated Knowledge’ in the Works of Palestinian and Native American Writers”. She contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

Panic and the Pandemic ‘Down Under’: The Ultimate Unseen Enemy

By Jeremy Salt

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In the southeastern corner of Australia a State of Emergency has replaced what was known until recently only as the State of Victoria. The unseen enemy has been a fact of modern life since the 1950s but at least the red under the bed could be seen if found. COVID-19 is the ultimate unseen enemy, because it literally cannot be seen except through a microscope and noone knows where it is and when it will strike.

The panic generated by the spread of the virus is completely disproportionate to the risk of dying from it. Between late January and July 1, 2020, 2,505, 923 people were tested for COVID-19 in Australia. As updated by Worldometer on July 3, of the 8255 cases that tested positive, 7319 had recovered.  A further 832 cases were still active (99 percent in mild condition; of the 7423 ‘closed’ cases 99 percent of those infected had recovered and one percent (104) had died.

Figures issued by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that of the deaths associated with COVID-19, no-one below the age of 39 had died.  In the 40-49 age bracket, there had been one death; 50-59, two; 60-69, 13; 70-79, 31; 80-89, 35; over 90, 20. Thus, well over 80 of the 104 deaths were in the 70s-90s age bracket.

By comparison 3334 Australians died from influenza/pneumonia in 2016 (median age 88.8). In 2017 the figure was 4269 (median age 88.3): in 2018, 3102 (median age 89.3). In the same year, 2952 Australians died from accidental falls, their median age 87.3. A further 3046 Australians died from “intentional self-harm” and hundreds of others from traffic accidents or drowning.  This is not to underplay the seriousness of the COVID-19 virus but only to put it into perspective and the context of deaths from other causes.

The figures for influenza deaths in 2019 have not yet been published.  According to a report published on August 18, 2019, however, even before the influenza season (June-September) was over 430 people had already died (some deaths were attributed to other causes despite showing “flu-like symptoms).” Hospitals were said to be “overrun,” with nearly 217,000 people diagnosed with the illness and “experts” believing the final death toll could could be much higher. [1] The Queensland government’s Ministry of Health confirmed that 264 people in Queensland alone had died.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one billion people around the world get the flu every year, with a loose estimate of 290,000-650,000 deaths, compared to the number of people misleadingly listed by the WHO as dying ‘of’ the COVID-19 virus: 472, 541 by June 23, 2020, and more than half a million by the end of the month. Despite the comparatively high global death toll from influenza, only five pandemics have been declared in more than a century, the worst of them in 1918 and the most recent after the ‘swine flu’ outbreak of 2009.

While COVID-19 may be ‘a’ cause of the 104 deaths it is not generally ‘the’ cause.  Those who die are listed as having been infected with the virus and its significance in their deaths remains unknown. Most of those infected have other serious and possibly terminal diseases likely to end their lives anyway (only about four percent of those said to have been infected with the virus when they died had no preconditions) and statements that people have died ‘from’ the virus or ‘of’ the virus, as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) on its website, are misleading.

Doctors in the UK are authorized to list the virus as a cause of death on the clinical “balance of probabilities.” In Australia doctors are instructed that COVID-19 should be recorded on the death certificate when the disease caused “or is assumed to have caused or contributed” to the death. The doctors might be right but probabilities and assumptions are hardly scientific as a means of assessing the causes of death. Bearing this in mind, the veracity of the statistics has to be regarded with some caution.

A further issue in COVID-19 control is the reliability of the basic WHO-approved test for the virus, which two investigators have concluded after detailed research is “scientifically meaningless.”[2]  Many deaths associated with COVID-19 have occurred in nursing or aged care homes, where the Swiss Policy Research Institute estimates that up to 30 percent may ultimately have been caused not by the virus but by the consequences of the lockdown, including isolation, panic and fear.[3]

Australian politicians will insist that without the lockdown the figures would have been much higher. This will forever remain a moot point but other countries have come through well without adopting such restrictive measures as Australian governments, Singapore, Japan and Taiwan among them.

Sweden, on the other hand, the bad boy of the pandemic, took minimal measures and suffered a comparatively high death toll of 5280, 51.85 deaths per 100,000 or a 8.1 fatality rate per 100,000. Of the deaths, 1151 were in the 70-79 age bracket and 2191 in their 80s to 90s, a total of 3342 deaths, more than two-thirds of the total, suggesting that while Sweden was correct in thinking that no more than minimal restrictions were necessary for the general population, it failed to provide sufficient protection for the most vulnerable, the aged and seriously ill.

In the state of Victoria 20 people infected with COVID-19 had died by the end of June, 2020 (compared to 68 deaths from influenza in 2016 and 297 in 2017).  The battle to contain the virus is being led by the Premier, Daniel Andrews, an aspiring or professional politician since he left university, and his Health Minister, Jenny Mikakos, a tax lawyer before she went into politics.  They have closed down schools and businesses.  Tens of thousands of people have been thrown out of work and the center of Melbourne turned into a dead zone.  In a city that is a magnet for young people, with hundreds of bars and other music ‘venues, the ‘hospitality’ sector has been severely affected.

While staff can claim unemployment benefits, restaurant and bar owners have been hung out to dry, with the government that closed their businesses offering nothing beyond small dollops of financial support and the suggestion that they take out bank loans. Many will go under (some already have) and others will be saddled with debt if/when they are able to reopen.  The easing of restrictions can mean little in practice, when owners of a ‘music venue’ have to apply a ‘density quotient’ of one person per four square meters.  This obviously rules out the numerous small bars where people like to meet because they ARE small and therefore cozy.

The politicians, the police, the health ‘experts’ and the media are all speaking with one voice.  There is no two-way conversation between the state and the people but a monologue, with the government and its ancillary forces telling the people what they have to do, what they have to understand, as the media frequently puts it.  In the name of suppressing the pandemic the dividing line between the authoritarian state and the liberal democracy is gradually being erased.

Expanded police powers include random home door-knocks to check that people are ‘self-isolating,’ with the police searching for anyone not at home.   A recent video showed police harassing a woman walking in the center of the city with a child in a pusher.  While one policeman wrestled her to the ground when she objected, another wheeled the child away. Groups of police are arriving unnannounced at restaurants to make sure social distancing guidelines are being observed and the names and contact phone numbers of all customers recorded on the official government form.  Police ‘enforcement patrols’ have been set up in viral ‘hot spots’, with traffic stopped across the city to check whether drivers have moved out of these suburbs.

Both the Federal (national) and state police have an arm called Protective Service Officers. In Victoria, they were created for the express purpose of providing security at suburban railway stations but are now being redeployed at shopping centers and in residential areas.   In the words of Police Minister Lisa Neville, “What we hadn’t predicted was that we would be given the opportunity to test how using them in shopping centers and other areas would go and we’ve had that opportunity.”   Assistant Police Commissioner Shane Patton concurs, as it had been a “real advantage” for the Victoria Police to be able to use the PSOs elsewhere during the pandemic.

Hundreds of people have been calling the “police assistance line,” set up for reports of “non-urgent” crime, to report breaches of the pandemic regulations: 61,000 in February, before the pandemic was declared; 71,000 in March and 102,000 in April, an average of  3500-11,500 day, mostly about the virus.  ‘Dobbing in’ – snitching – has always been regarded with the greatest contempt in Australia, along with contempt for the ‘scab,’ the worker who breaks the union picket line, but now the police see the snitch as a virtue, as doing “the right thing and holding others to account,” says Assistant Police Commisssioner Patton. “It’s about saving lives.”

Fines of up to $1652 are being imposed for people not doing the right thing, by failing to wear a face mask or not observing the correct social distance.   Apart from police surveillance and intervention, the phone app millions of Australians have been persuaded into downloading enables the government to track them down wherever they happen to be, in the name of ‘tracing’ contacts of those who might have been infected.   The fact that anyone with a smartphone can be tracked down anyway, can even be heard and photographed without their knowledge is no argument for taking the surveillance possibilities of the virus app lightly when there is no verifiable protection against its use for other purposes.

With the number of new cases on the rise, Andrews called in the army to give logistical support. Prime Minister Scott Morrison, talking as though this was Afghanistan, said the army was already “on the ground” in Victoria.  Discussions were continuing with Mr Andrews and the Minister of Defence.   The army had already been summoned “to assist with compliance” at the hotels where nationals returning from overseas are being quarantined in their rooms for 14 days (at least at the government’s expense: in Queensland overseas arrivals have to pay $2800 per person).

The quarantine hotels have been placed under the overall control of Corrections Victoria, which runs the state’s prisons.  Media images show up to a dozen police and soldiers in uniform with slouch hats surrounding travelers bussed in from the airport as they wheel their luggage into a hotel foyer.  In South Australia police armed with assault rifles have been patrolling “at risk” areas.

As the number of infections continued to rise in Victoria, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian called on anyone offering accommodation – hotels, hostels and Airbnb –  to turn away people from Victoria.  The NSW government then took a further step, closing its borders to Victorians from ‘hot spots’ and threatening those who ‘slip across’ with an $11,000 fine and six months in jail.  Queensland has closed its borders to all visitors from Victoria.  Cars crossing from Victoria into South Australia have been vandalized and the drivers abused, such is the hysteria that has been generated.

While travelers arriving in Melbourne are quarantined in hotels for 14 days at the government’s expense, those arriving in Brisbane on a flight from overseas have to pay $2800 per person.   No arrangement seems to have been made for travelers who need to be in Queensland and don’t have $2800 to spare.

With dire reports of death, new ‘hot spots’ and ‘spikes’ filling the papers every day, people have been wondering when and how it will all end, “when will I be able to hug my grandchildren again?” as the headline over one article read but “do the right thing”,  “do the decent thing”, “play it safe and stay at home” are the messages repeatedly being hammered home by politicians, police, bureaucrats,  health experts and the media, in and out of uniform, but all speaking with the same voice of authority.

Around the world ‘lockdowns’ have had profound economic and social consequences, including mass unemployment (about half the British workforce is now unemployed or underemployed), depression, domestic violence, eviction from homes, impoverishment, the denial of regular medical service even to people with serious and possibly terminal illnesses and ‘distance education,’ with parents expected to hold down jobs and simultaneously supervise the education of their children at home.

Health practitioners writing for the British medical journal the Lancet say the closure of schools in 107 countries around the world has been based on evidence and “assumptions” from influenza outbreaks.  About 862 million children and young people – “roughly half of the global student population” [4] – have been affected, apart from the impact on the lives of parents and other relatives.

The other consequences include the loss to society of parental productivity, the possibility of vulnerable grandparents called on to provide child care transmitting the virus to children (or children transmitting it to them), the loss of education, harm to the welfare of the child especially among the most vulnerable childen and nutritional problems caused to children for whom free school meals are “an important source of nutrition.”  Social isolation is listed as another negative byproduct.

The Lancet study notes the “remarkable dearth of policy-relevant data” on school distancing, including closures.  The authors question whether the closures were necessary and draw attention to the adverse effects, which include the economic harm to working parents, health-care workers and other workers “forced” from work to provide child-care.

İt finds that “the evidence to support national closure of schools to combat COVID-19 is very weak and that data from influenza outbreaks suggest that school closures could have relatively small effects on a virus with COVID-19’s high transmissibility and apparent low clinical effect on school children.”

Writing in the New York Times, David Katz, President of the True Health Initiative and founding director of the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Centre, proposed more targeted ways of dealing with the pandemic, based on preferential protection for the medical and those over 60 years of age while allowing ‘herd immunity’ to develop among the population at large.  Infection would spread but only in a mild form for the vast bulk of the population, with adequate medical resources then available to treat those who become seriously ill. [5]

Although contact-tracing phone apps have been introduced in many countries, including Australia, the WHO has recommended against their use in any circumstance, whether epidemic or pandemic.   Issues of privacy, increased government surveillance at a time when it has already reached an all-time high and the possible ‘repurposing’ of the apps are immediately raised.

These questions only add to a long list that need answers, including where the virus first surfaced.  The media fed the first assumption that it was transferred to humans from a ‘wet market’ in China but numerous other countries, including the US, have since been identified as an earlier possible source (according to a Spanish report, the COVID-19 virus was discovered in waste water in Barcelona in March 2019).

The supposedly ‘natural’ origin of the virus has been challenged by some eminent epidemiologists who say it can only have been developed in a laboratory.  If so, was its release accidental or deliberate? Given the intense security measures observed in biological research laboratories, especially when a virus can threaten human life, how could such a release have been accidental?

On October 18, 2019, the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation sponsored a pandemic exercise called ‘Event 201.’  According to the scenario as laid down, it would only be a matter of time before an epidemic turned into a pandemic with catastrophic global consequences, arising from the transmission of a virus to humans through bats and pigs.  The ‘matter of time’ turned out to be only two months later, when the first outbreak of COVID-19 was identified in China (subsequent reports had it appearing much earlier elsewhere).

Fortuitously, the virus surfaced at the precise point when US banks, trading houses and other financial institutions were about to plunge off the cliff, more disastrously than in 2007-09.  While the world was looking the other way, the Federal Reserve bailed Wall Sreet out to the tune of trillions of dollars: $6.6 trillion from September, 2019 – March, 2020, a total of $29 trillion since 2007.  When the root of the problem is systemic, however,  these trillions might end up as good money thrown away after bad.  Writing in the current issue of the Atlantic, Frank Partnoy warns that the US financial system could be on the cusp of calamity and “this time we might not be able to save it.” [6]

The enormity of this second bailout would surely have caused public fury if exposed to the light of day but the bigger story was what it represented, not just the collapse of financial houses but an epochal collapse of the global ‘free market’ capitalist order as it had operated since 1945.  Based on over-production and artificially-stimulated consumerism in a world of shrinking resources, the system had not been sustainable for a long time.  Astute observers had seen the end coming for years. Already in 2015 the UN Agenda 2030 had as its central theme “a sustainable world with income equality, gender equality and vaccines for all.”  But how was the changeover to be managed, how was the new world going to be built on the ruins of the old and how could the global capitalist order be preserved in these new circumstances?

At this point COVID-19 appeared like a genie out of the bottle. In the short term it provided cover for the trillions of dollars paid out in the US to faltering corporations and financial institutions.  Banks and corporations in the UK, Australia and other countries were also the prime beneficiaries of multiple billion dollar ‘stimulus’ packages.   Media-generated pandemic panic then enabled governments to lock down entire populations and prepare them for the post-COVID-19 world.

On June 3, 2020, the WEF announced ‘The Great Reset,’ the theme of its next global forum, in January 2021.  This ‘reset’ would be based on economic restructuring built around sustainable development. The ‘market’ would be steered towards new outcomes; investments would advance equality and sustainability; and a ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ would be launched to address health and social issues.

The ‘reset’ has been endorsed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the corporate world.  Goldman Sachs has developed “a framework for investing after Covid-19,’ which it regards as a “rule-changing” and an “existential event where capital needs to find new homes.”  Retooling, winners and losers, new learning, and filling empty spaces created by failed businesses are some of the key phrases in a research paper on how Goldman Sachs (which would have collapsed in 2007-9 but for the $12.9 billion it received in the ‘bailout’ of that time) plans to be part of ‘The Great Reset.’[7]

The ‘reset’ is top-down management by the same institutions and corporations that created and kept alive a failing economic order for as long as they could and only accepted change when the system was on the point of collapse. The First Industrial Revolution did not lead to social equity and balance but to children working in coal mines for ten hours a day or losing their fingers in the spinning jenny at the textile factory.

The notion now, that those who have exploited humanity in every age are about to become its benefactors, is amusing but not to be taken seriously. The promises of great health, social and environmental benefits made by the architects of the ‘great reset’ and the Fourth Industrial Revolution are no more than the sales pitch for the restructuring of the old economic order.

Just like the old order, the new one is destined to serve the money and power interests of governments, institutions and corporations stratospherically above the interests of the people. The economic and social debris of the old world, the collapsed businesses, the millions of jobs lost (almost half the working age population of the US is presently unemployed) and the countless lives destroyed will be cleared away, leaving the corporations, protected, refinanced, and coming through unscathed, to fill Goldman Sachs’ empty spaces.

There could not be a ‘great reset’ without the pandemic. With the consent of the people, fear bordering on hysteria has been used to turn ‘liberal democracies’ into working models of authoritarian states.  The world has been subjected to a training exercise for the balance between state and society once the world has been reset.  State intervention and micro- surveillance will be generally accepted as part of the ‘new normal.’ Consensual authoritarianism will prevail.  Rights and responsibilities will be reversed: even more than previously, it will be the right of the state to intervene and the responsibility of the individual to obey.

The leaders 

Finally, the background and personalities of the politicians who have locked down Australia raise questions of their own. Internationally, Scott Morrison, the prime minister, was last seen on holiday in Hawaii, a big smile on his face and frangipani wreathing his head, Nero-like, as large parts of Australia burnt down.  The folly of his behavior might have finished him off had not the virus given him the opportunity to renew himself as a national leader.

Politically, Morrison is an arch-conservative; religiously, he is a Christian fundamentalist, a Pentacostalist who regularly attends Sydney’s Horizon Church.  The Pentecostalists believe in the ‘inerrancy’ of the Bible and ‘prosperity theology,’ acording to which the rich are rich because they deserve to be rich.  They also believe in miracles, faith healing through the laying on of hands and the vocal gifts of ‘glossolalic’ utterances, otherwise known as speaking in tongues, and xenoglossia, which is speaking or writing in a language noone else can (yet) understand.

In Morrison’s political life there is little of the mercy, compassion and humility usually associated with Christianity.  As Minister for Immigration and Border Protection in 2014, he did his best to stop asylum seekers from reaching Australia and was accused by the Australian Human Rights Commission of falling down on his responsibilities under international law to protect children being kept in detention. He has denied that there was ever slavery in Australia, in complete ignorance of the 19th century ‘blackbirding’ of tens of thousands of Pacfic islanders, tricked into coming to Queensland to work on plantations as indentured laborers or the indigenous people exploited by church missions. He opposes gay marriage and has upheld the ‘right’ of religious schools under the Sex Discrimination Act to expel gay or lesbian students.

In foreign affairs he has further cemented Australia’s place as a camp follower of the US, whatever it decides to do. On Palestine, his government has recognized West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and has tried to block the prosecution of Israelis for war crimes at the International Criminal Court.  In late June only the Marshall Islands and Australia voted against resolutions tabled by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) opposing Israel’s annexation of the West Bank.

Morrison has signaled that if the US decides to go to war against Iran he will “seriously consider” Australia joining it.  Australia hosts a number of US military/communications bases, is fully inside the current US military-economic ‘pivot’ against China and Morrison has just announced a $270 billion ‘defense’ program for a “dangerous and disorderly post-COVID19 world” policy fashioned around the ‘threat’ from China.  Here the virus is again used as cover, this time to justify massive (in Australian terms”) ‘defence’ spending.

Both Morrison and Foreign Minister Marise Payne have made numerous public statements that could only antagonize China.  In late June the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian Security Organization (ASIO) raided the home and office of an NSW Labor Party MP, Shaoquette Mosolmane, on the basis of an allegation that the office had been infiltrated by a Chinese government agent. Although no evidence was presented and no charges laid, Mosolmane was immediately suspended from the Labor Party.  The raid would have had to have been authorized by Morrison. These developments plus the accusation that Wuhan was the source of the COVID-19 virus have directly fed public and media anti-Chinese sentiments.

In the private sector, Morrison was hired as the director of New Zealand’s Office of Tourism and Sport in 1998 but ‘let go’ in 2000 with a year of his contract still to run, after criticism of the board’s conduct and performance by the Auditor-General. In 2004 he was taken on as managing director of Tourism Australia by the Howard government and, again, ‘let go’ in 2006   a year before his contract ended, after complaints of $184 million being awarded in contracts without proper assessment that the organization was getting value for money. The fact that a federal Liberal Party government let Morrison go is a fair enough indication that what he did wrong was serious. In 2007 he entered federal parliament after a dirty election campaign which saw him collaborating with a Labor Party figure, Sam Dastyari, to do in a rival within his own party.

While Morrison presents himself as a man of the people, as an open, good-hearted suburban dad, he has a tainted background in business, has engaged in underhand behavior in politics, has shown no empathy with the wretched of the earth in line with the tenets of the Christian faith he professes and has played on public biases and fears to advance his own political interests.

Daniel Andrews, the Victorian Premier, comes across as a far cleaner figure, if increasingly out of his depth in the handling of the pandemic.  He also has a religious background, as a Catholic, but a progressive one. He supports abortion on demand, has opened safe injection rooms for drug addicts and has legalized euthanasia for the terminally ill.   Nevertheless, his close daily control of the messages coming out of the government and increasingly authoritarian management style have earned him the nickname of “Chairman Dan.’

The consequences

So far the federal Australian government has spent $138 billion to support workers and businesses, but many – especially in the hospitality sector – have received little or no financial support and will either not be able to reopen their businesses or will reopen them saddled with years of debt.  In May unemployment had jumped in one month from 5.2 percent to 6.2 percent of the work force, with 600,000 people losing their jobs in April and a further 230,000 in May.   At 13.8 percent, youth unemployment was especially high.   The ABS statistics show that about 2.7 million workers – one in five of the work force – ‘left’ their employment in March-April or had their hours reduced.   According to current predictions, unemployment will reach 10 percent.

The financial costs incurred in the name of suppressing the virus are likely to set Australian economic development back for decades.  The social costs and medical costs are yet to come in.  These would cover the number of people whose medical needs have been disrupted by the single-minded focus on COVID-19, and those whose health has been worsened by isolation, loneliness and the inability to maintain businesses and provide for their families, leading in some cases, without any doubt, to suicide.

Victorians, and Australians more generally, need to do the right thing, the decent thing, and ask questions instead of docilely accepting what they are being told, much of it misleading and lacking context.  Overall, the question eventually to be asked may not be whether the cure was worse than the disease, but how much worse it was.

‘The Deal of Shame’: Thousands in Gaza Protest against Annexation, Urge Boycott of Israel (PHOTOS)

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Thousands of Palestinians rally in the besieged Gaza Strip in protest of Israel’s annexation plan. (Photo: Fawzi Mahmoud, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

Thousands of Palestinians on Wednesday rallied in the besieged Gaza Strip in protest of an Israeli government’s plan to annex large swathes of the occupied West Bank. 

The protesters were led by representatives of all Palestinian political groups and civil society organizations. The crowds, which descended from across the Strip, carried Palestinian flags and placards condemning US bias towards Israel and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s attempt to confiscate more Palestinian land.

Annexing approximately a third of the occupied West Bank means that Israel would officially consider the newly-annexed Palestinian land as part of the Israeli state, similar to Israel’s illegal annexation of East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights in 1980 and ‘81 respectively.

Annexation also means that some 4.5% of the Palestinian population of the West Bank will be living in isolated enclaves within the annexed territories.

“The annexation is a threat to the Palestinians and violates international legitimacy resolutions,” Saadi Abed of the Palestinian Democratic Union (FIDA) said, addressing the rally in Gaza, TRT News reported. 

“The land grip will give away for a new Palestinian intifada,” he said, going on to call on the Palestinians to close ranks and “end the rift to face occupation plans.”

Netanyahu’s government coalition had set July 1 as the date to begin the implementation of the annexation plan, as part of the US President Donald Trump’s Administration’s so-called ‘Deal of the Century’.

Similar mobilization was reported in the West Bank as well, and many protests have already been scheduled for the coming days. 

Protesters in Gaza held signs in English and Arabic that read in part, “The annexation is contrary to the UN charter and a fundamentally illegal act,” “Palestinian Lives Matter,” “Our People Are United against Annexation,” “No Apartheid No Annexation,” “Down with the Deal of the Century,” “The Deal of Shame,” and “BDS: Boycott Israel.” 

Aside from the political factions that participated in the Gaza rally, women groups, student groups, and many civil society organizations were also present, including representatives from the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS).

(All Photos: Fawzi Mahmoud)

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Related

Hundreds March In New York Against ‘Israel’s’ West Bank Annexation Scheme

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Hundreds March In New York Against ‘Israel’s’ West Bank Annexation Scheme

By Staff, Agencies

Hundreds of protesters marched through New York City to voice opposition to the Zionist entity’s annexation plans in the West Bank and the continued occupation of Palestinian territory as the Tel Aviv regime gears up for a major land grab.

A sizable crowd of demonstrators gathered in Brooklyn for Wednesday’s ‘Day of Rage’ rally, where marchers were seen carrying an array of flags and banners while shouting slogans for a “free Palestine.”

The gathering grew throughout the afternoon, according to local reporters at the scene, who estimated that some 2,000 people turned out for the rally. Though there were no reports of clashes with law enforcement, riot police were present, trying and failing at one point to corral protesters to one side of the street.

Dozens of speakers from local organizations addressed the crowd during the march, while members of Neturei Karta, an anti-Zionist Orthodox Jewish organization, were also spotted at the event carrying elaborate signs and placards.

Similar rallies were also staged in New Mexico and California. Early on Wednesday morning, protesters gathered outside the San Francisco home of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) to protest against the annexation plan, calling on the lawmaker to join progressive Democrats in opposing the scheme, local media reported.

The protests come as the Zionist regime moves ahead on plans to annex all Jewish settlements in the West Bank – including in the strategically important Jordan Valley – many of which were built on Palestinian land in defiance of international law.

While the move was initially slated for July 1, on Tuesday Zionist Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suggested the plan would be delayed as talks continue with Washington, which has yet to give its formal blessing for the land grab.

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وسائل إعلام إسرائيلية تكشف عن خريطة الضم التي اقترحتها “إسرائيل”

المصدر: الميادين نت

وسائل إعلام إٍسرائيلية تكشف عن خطة الضم التي اقترحتها
إعلام إسرائيلي: خريطة الضم الإسرائيلية تقتضي ضمّ 30% من المناطق

خريطة الضمّ التي اقترحتها “إسرائيل” على الإدارة الأميركية تقتضي ضمّ 30% من الأراضي الفلسطينية، وتتضمن حوالي 20 نقطة استيطانية كحزام واسع من المستوطنات المعزولة.

كشفت وسائل إعلام إسرائيلية عن خريطة الضمّ التي اقترحتها “إسرائيل” على الولايات المتحدة، مشيرةً إلى أنها تعديل لخطة الرئيس “الأميركي بفرض السيادة على نقاط استيطانية، مقابل تبادل مناطق مع الفلسطينيين”. 

وتشمل الخارطة الإسرائيلية تعديلات أدخلتها “إسرائيل” على الخطة الأميركية الأصلية المعروفة بـ”صفقة القرن”.

وذكرت قناة “كان” الإسرائيلية أن الفارق بينها وبين المقترحِ الأميركي، هو أن المستوطنات المعزولة أصبحت أحزمةً واسعةً جداً، تتضمن حوالي 20 نقطة استيطانية، لم تظهر في الخُطة السابقة.

وأشارت القناة إلى أن الحفاظ على الموقف الذي قدّمه الأميركيون، “سيقتضي ضمّ 30% من المناطق، وإعطاء 70% للفلسطينيين”.

وفي سبيل ذلك، اقترح رئيس الحكومة الإسرائيلية بنيامين نتنياهو، منح الفلسطينين “تعويضاً” عبارة عن “قطاع من الأراضي بالمنطقة المعروفة باسم صحراء يهودا بالضفة”.

كذلك نقلت القناة عن مصادر سياسية إسرائيلية أن نتنياهو يسعى لضم مستوطنتين “تنطويان على أهمية دينية”، هما بيت إيل (قرب رام الله وسط الضفة) و”شيلو” (بين رام الله ونابلس)، لافتة إلى أن فرض السيادة على تلك المناطق يمثل “أهمية للوبي الإنجيلي (الداعم لإسرائيل والرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب) في الولايات المتحدة”.

وكانت وكالة “أسوشيتد برس”، قد نشرت تقريراً قالت فيه إن “كبار مساعدي الأمن القومي للرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب لم يتمكنوا من التوصل إلى قرار بشأن ما إذا كان سيتم دعم خطة إسرائيلية لضم أجزاء كبيرة من الأراضي”.

وعارض الاتحاد الأوروبي خطة الضم، المزمع الإعلان عنها غداً الأربعاء، فيما حذرت المفوضية السامية لحقوق الإنسان”إسرائيل” من المضي قدماً في خططها لضم مساحة غير مشروعة من الأراضي الفلسطينية. 

No place for justice in UN dictionary: Lebanese journalist

Source

June 28, 2020 – 15:18

TEHRAN – Mohamad Kleit, a Lebanese journalist specialized in international affairs and geopolitics, tells the Tehran Times that the United Nations celebrates its 75th anniversary, while this international organization has failed to achieve justice.

“Considering Israel is the “U.S. pampered baby”, metaphorically speaking, any international resolution would be negligible if it doesn’t preserve Israeli interests, even if those interests were ethnic cleansing against Palestinians, preservation of the illegal and inhumane blockade on the Gaza Strip and building illegal settlements on the Palestinian soil in the West Bank,” says Kleit, who is deputy editor at U-News Agency.

On the future of the United Nations, Kleit notes, “I personally see that the role of the UN will be minimized considering that major powers are out their taking what they want with disregard to any UN resolution or the disruption of global stability.”

The text of the interview with Mohamad Kleit is as follows:

Question: The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War with several objectives primarily the prevention of war and maintaining peace in disputed areas. But the UN has failed to prevent war and fulfill peacekeeping duties many times throughout its history. In your opinion, what have been the main causes of this passivity?

Answer: The United Nations’ passivity is basically caused by the strong political powers controlling some of its major and most critical decisions; particularly by the United States of America which spent $10 billion in 2018 (almost 30% of UN’s peacekeeping operations are funded by the United States). This affects United Nations and its Security Council’s decisions in areas that the U.S. is directly involved in, for example, Syria, Yemen, Iraq in 2003, and others.

“Considering Israel is the “U.S. pampered baby”, metaphorically speaking, any international resolution would be negligible if it doesn’t preserve Israeli interests, even if those interests were ethnic cleansing against Palestinians, preservation of the illegal and inhumane blockade on the Gaza Strip and building illegal settlements on the Palestinian soil in the West Bank,” says Kleit, who is deputy editor at U-News Agency.

On the future of the United Nations, Kleit notes, “I personally see that the role of the UN will be minimized considering that major powers are out their taking what they want with disregard to any UN resolution or the disruption of global stability.”

The text of the interview with Mohamad Kleit is as follows:

Question: The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War with several objectives primarily the prevention of war and maintaining peace in disputed areas. But the UN has failed to prevent war and fulfill peacekeeping duties many times throughout its history. In your opinion, what have been the main causes of this passivity?

Answer: The United Nations’ passivity is basically caused by the strong political powers controlling some of its major and most critical decisions; particularly by the United States of America which spent $10 billion in 2018 (almost 30% of UN’s peacekeeping operations are funded by the United States). This affects United Nations and its Security Council’s decisions in areas that the U.S. is directly involved in, for example, Syria, Yemen, Iraq in 2003, and others.

“They (UN) didn’t call out who was clearly responsible for this (Yemen) catastrophe, yet they called for a political solution back in 2016 in Kuwait that would indirectly preserve the Saudi Arabia’s interest while acknowledging the newly formed government in Sana.”

It also acts as a pressure force on political issues, most recently the Israeli atrocities against Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, where Israel doesn’t abide by any Security Council decision nor UN resolutions ever since the entity joined the UN. This is because the U.S. has close ties and joint interests in Israel, thus it is not dealing with the Palestinian cause in an objective manner, where the U.S. always sides with Israel, consequently belittling any UN resolution, regardless how righteous and just it is.

Q: Ever since the creation of the Jewish state in 1948, Palestinians have been fighting against what a UN investigator once described as Israel’s ethnic cleansing. Today Israel controls dominantly over Palestine territories. It also has imposed a crippling blockade on Gaza and is continuing its construction of illegal settlements on occupied lands in defiance of several UN resolutions calling for an end to those activities. What is your take on it?

A: As in other areas of turmoil and disruption, the UN has its hands tied because of the U.S. financial advantage over its regular budget. This poses a threat and jeopardizes any resolution issued by the UN in matters the U.S. would consider part of its so-called “national security”, which, as history taught us, extends across the world far from the U.S. national borders.

Now considering Israel is the “U.S. pampered baby”, metaphorically speaking, any international resolution would be negligible if it doesn’t preserve Israeli interests, even if those interests were ethnic cleansing against Palestinians, preservation of the illegal and inhumane blockade on the Gaza Strip, building illegal settlements on the Palestinian soil in the West Bank, or even detainment of Palestinian children for investigation while mistreating prisoners of opinion and protests.

History has also taught us that Israel has never once abided by any UN resolution that isn’t fully in its favor, even when it’s waging an occupation like the one in 1982 in Lebanon or bombing civilian sites in Syria that is being internally war-torn since 2011. It also, rudely, disrespects any UN resolution that is internationally consented, like Resolution 1701 to end the 2006 war on Lebanon that was unanimously approved by the United Nations Security Council on 11 August 2006, where each side of the war (Lebanese Resistance Movement and Israel) goes back to their international borders before the war started in July, yet Israel, until this day, violates Lebanese airspace with fighter jets and occasionally targets civilian, scientific, and military targets in Syria from the Lebanese airspace.

Q: Saudi Arabia has been incessantly pounding Yemen since March 2015 in an attempt to crush the popular Ansarullah movement and reinstate former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who is a staunch ally of the Riyadh regime. Many experts accuse the UN silence regarding Saudi Arabia’s aggression and argue that the UN has failed to send humanitarian aid and support to civilians amid a blockade imposed on the war-torn country. What is your thought?

A: Justice is a negligible term in international books; it is only used when the elite nations preserve their interests on the expense of smaller powers, or helpless nations in that case. The Saudi-led coalition, that is supported militarily and politically by (just to name a few) the UAE, USA, UK, France, Israel, Egypt, Bahrain, and other nations, launched a war on Yemen in 2015 that has been described by the UN itself as “one of the worst human catastrophes in modern history.” The war started on the request of the ousted Yemeni president Abed Rabu Mansour Hadi, who took Aden for refuge after a large-scale protest in the capital Sana, where a coalition of Yemeni parties rules now, most prominently Ansarullah led by Abdul Malek al Houthi. Now considering Ansarullah’s opposition to Saudi Arabia’s control over Yemen (Saudis controlled and interfered in Yemen’s politics and economy for over 40 years during the reign of Ali Abdullah Saleh and then Mansour Hadi), which would jeopardize what they call “national security”, thus they launched a full-scale war on Yemen that has led to the death of well-over 30,000 persons and displaced millions, while 19 million are suffering from poverty and in danger of famine.

What did the UN do? They didn’t call out who was clearly responsible for this catastrophe, yet they called for a political solution back in 2016 in Kuwait that would indirectly preserve Saudi Arabia’s interest while acknowledging the newly formed government in Sana. The talks failed because of the continuation of hostilities until 2018 in Stockholm, where another round of talks happened to mark a breakthrough, yet the war is still ongoing with more complications and disasters to put in short.

From 2015 until this day, neither did the UN nor the international community point out that it’s Saudi Arabia and the UAE which are the direct causes of the catastrophe by a huge margin, with the help of the U.S., Israel, the UK, and France, yet they put both sides (the Saudi-led coalition and the Sana government) as equally responsible for the war… It is quiet intriguing for a man shooting an AK47 and an RPG to be held the same responsibility as another man flying an F-16 with U.S. satellites giving him pin-point directions (not all the time though) with missiles that have proven to have the ability to put entire villages to the ground. This is a major problem that stands in the way of any problem-solving procedure that would be in the best interest of Yemen’s future, which is pointing out who holds responsibility for the problem in a just and fair way, not on the basis of equality.

Q: The United Nations is celebrating its 75th anniversary, while it is dealing with serious challenges, including poverty, disease, environmental breakdown, ongoing conflicts, and so on. In your view, is the UN ready to face the future?

A: In addition to the ongoing global crises from Palestine, Yemen, to general African wars, to the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, the Coronavirus and its financial backlash put huge pressure on the UN, as well as the rise of alt-right movements and populist ideologies affect the on-the-ground operations of the UN. One major example is U.S. President Donald Trump retreating from the World Health Organization with accusations that it is siding with China (U.S. economic rival), as well as cutting funding for UNRWA which is specialized with Palestinian refugees. Both cases place huge pressures on both organizations, considering that the U.S. is their biggest donor. The first one is a political decision to pressure WHO into joining the “Ideological Cold War” (as China’s Foreign Ministry named it) against China, while the second is to pressure the Palestinian authorities into accepting Trump’s “Deal of the Century” which is completely a pro-Israel agreement basically aimed to give full control of the West Bank to Israel.

These are just examples of what the UN is going to face from the U.S., in particular, as a cost for its not-so-total kneeling to the man in Washington. I personally see that the role of the UN will be minimized considering that major powers are out taking what they want with disregard to any UN resolution or the disruption of global stability.

‘Ordinary’ Israelis Don’t Perceive Themselves as Ordinary People

By Rima Najjar

Global Research, June 28, 2020

On reading the enduring horrific daily news coming out of Palestine/Israel relating to the ongoing Jewish-state Nakba, I invariably feel a strong desire to discuss what is often the elephant in the room. It’s an issue constantly on the minds of Israelis and Palestinians alike, while at the same time being difficult to discuss frankly and directly in polite society.

The issue is Jewish supremacy as it manifests itself in the Zionist settler-colonial state of Israel and beyond. (See my blog post, What is Jewish supremacy and how is it different from White supremacy?). I say “beyond”, because there is a strong existing connection to Israel by ‘ordinary’ Jews outside of Israel/Palestine, whose Jewish communities, in Europe and America, feed Israel. Even at a mature age they go there, either to visit or to stay (which is a support and confirmation for the state), but more often to serve in the military which is the most militant of brainwashing in Jewish supremacy.

Most activists skirt the issue of Jewish supremacy and some deny it outright in a way they would not dream of doing with White supremacy. The only safe place to discuss the issue of Jewish supremacy, it sometimes appears, is within the confines of Mondoweiss.

But even there, we are more likely to read forceful critiques debunking the Zionist idea of a ‘Jewish nation’ as sold to the world by the world Zionist movement. A necessary exercise. Nevertheless, I often wonder, what about the concomitant fact of the religious Jewish character of the state as expressed in its Basic Law? What about the self-professed Jewish identity of millions of Jews, in Israel and outside Israel — not to mention Palestinian perceptions of them — as Jews first, and Zionist second?

It therefore seems at times that, in order to liberate Palestine from the Zionist settler-colonial regime, Palestinians must first undertake the impossible task of convincing the world that those who espouse the Zionist settler-colonial regime are less Jewish than Zionist, which of course strips them of their self-identified Jewish identity and is unacceptable to them.

More and more Jews worldwide today are saying “not in our name”, in reference to Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people. However, they too, don’t have the power to rename Israeli Jews as something else. This brings to mind Israel’s chief rabbi’s statement that “some Jews are more Jewish than others.”

When we talk about Israel, we can discuss apartheid, demographics, settler-colonialism, but we are often silenced when the issue is Jewish supremacy and the Jewish nature of the state — issues that are central to Israeli society as well as to the current and future dynamics of Palestinian-Israeli relations.

If the goal of all the analysis about Israel is to find realistic solutions for an impossible status quo, we ought not to dismiss this very real and troubling issue. It doesn’t make sense to do so.

In a 2015 article published online and titled ‘Palestine‒Israel: Decolonization Now, Peace Later’, Alaa Tartir (researcher at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland and a policy advisor at Al-Shabaka) lists a number of basic but fundamental obstacles to any future lasting peace in Israel/Palestine. Among them is the following characterization of Israeli society:

Another dominant observation that I noticed in my small, random and unrepresentative sample is the sense of superiority [among Israeli Jews]. liberal, leftist, fundamentalists, secular, religious and progressive voices, from different generations living in different cities, shared the feature of superiority, which is problematic at the very personal and human level, before it extends to politics. Statements like ‘we are God’s chosen nation’, ‘we don’t care about international law’, ‘we help those poor Palestinians to end the occupation’, ‘we offer Palestinians jobs and they work for us’, ‘Gaza is irrelevant’, ‘I have Palestinian friends but would never trust them’ characterized the discussions. Therefore, unless ‘ordinary’ Israelis perceive themselves as ordinary people and not superior to other nations it is impossible to imagine how a one-state or two-state solution could work.

Tartir goes on to say,

Just as the Palestinian people and leadership need to engage in a serious process of reforming their strategies, so do the Israelis. The Israelis need to reconcile internally a number of issues mainly related to the apartheid structures, Jewish supremacy, the Jewish nature of the state, the demographic phobia and the return of the Palestinian refugees from exile.

When we are forced to ignore the perceptions of Israelis and their set of values and beliefs (which are the root manifestation of the Zionist Jewish state in Palestine), when we are unable to confront them candidly, we Palestinians will never be able to achieve justice and equality.

Lena, a former Israeli, writes:

Many Jews, even if not overtly Zionist, share this basic belief that in order to prevent another extermination, they must become DOMINANT and exercise superiority, because “this is how the world works, either you dominate or be exterminated”. Although nobody ever has persecuted or offended these young Jews, they share the view of Goyim as a bunch of people who inherently want to erase Jews from this planet. I honestly do not know how to combat a basic belief that the world is based on domination, that whoever does not dominate will be subjugated or killed, that Jews must forever fight against an inherent existential threat, therefore not letting them dominate is the same as wanting them all dead.

Lena describes the mindset of any group of people who have been conditioned to see the world through us vs. them.

“Confronting the occupier, colonizer or oppressor is the main lesson from the history of liberation movements across the world,” writes Tartir. We must confront Israelis on the issue of Jewish supremacy, as on all others.

*

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Rima Najjar is a Palestinian whose father’s side of the family comes from the forcibly depopulated village of Lifta on the western outskirts of Jerusalem and whose mother’s side of the family is from Ijzim, south of Haifa. She is an activist, researcher and retired professor of English literature, Al-Quds University, occupied West Bank. She is a frequent contributor to Global Research.The original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Rima Najjar, Global Research, 2020

مائة عام من الاستقلال تنتهي ب “وطن عربي محتل”!طلال سلمان

2020-‎06-‎29

طلال سلمان

يبدو الوطن العربي، في هذه اللحظة، وكأنه “ارض مشاع” لكل قادر منها نصيب: دوله متهالكة، او تائهة عن مصيرها، او فاقدة هويتها، ومصيرها ووجودها متروك للريح.
حتى جامعة الدول العربية، التي هي مجرد “مبكى”، لا تجتمع الا في مناسبات الحزن او الاغتصاب، كما تفعل الحبشة مع السودان ومصر ببناء “سد النهضة” على حساب جيرانها الاقربين واصدقائها التاريخيين، قبل أن يغزوها الاميركيون ومعهم العدو الاسرائيلي لمنحها فائضا من القوة على حساب مصر والسودان.
وسوريا غائبة او مغيبة عن جامعة الدول العربية بناء لقرار اتخذته امارة قطر العظمى ومساندة عدد من المفيدين منها، ولو على حساب قضايا العرب المقدسة، وفي الطليعة منها فلسطين..

أما العراق المنهك بترسبات حكم صدام حسين، فعلى ارضه، بعد، قوات اميركية وفرنسية، وايرانية، مع غزو تركي لبعض شماله بذريعة مقاتلة الاكراد.. علماً أن تركيا اردوغان قد شفطت من نهري دجلة والفرات ما استطاعت من المياه لتفرض العطش مع الجوع على ارض الرافدين.

..وها هو لبنان يعاني من آثار الحصار الشديد المضروب على سوريا، مع استمرار الغارات الاسرائيلية على مواقع محددة فيها بذريعة ضرب “القوات الايرانية، مع استهداف لوجود “حزب الله” كرديف، ومع تحاشي اصابة القوات الروسية المنتشرة فيها، وكذلك مواقع القوات التركية الغازية التي تحتل بعض الارض السورية في الشرق والشمال ( منبج ثم القامشلي ومحاولة التقدم نحو دير الزور) .

لن نتحدث عن السعودية وامارات الخليج فهي “رهينة المحبسين” الولايات المتحدة الاميركية والاسر الحاكمة.. وبرغم ذلك فإنها لا تتردد في غزو اليمن واعادة تقسمه إلى شمال وجنوب (صنعاء وعدن) مع خلاف حول شبه جزيرة سوقطره الخ..

في الجهة المقابلة تبرز ليبيا، التي جعلها معمر القذافي “جماهيرية” والتي يتزاحم على احتلالها، الآن، السلطان اردوغان بجيش المرتزقة معظمهم من اللاجئين السوريين إلى خليفة العثمانيين، فضلاً عن تطلع ايطاليا لاستعادة ما تعتبره من “املاكها” السابقة، كذلك فرنسا التي كانت تحتل الجنوب (سبها وما احاط بها) فضلاً عن البريطانيين الذين جاءوا إلى طبرق بذريعة أن الجنرال مونتغمري كان يجتاجها لطرد الجنرال رومل وجيش النازي بعيدا عن مصر الواقعة آنذاك تحت الاحتلال البريطاني.


لكأننا في العام 1920 حين تقاسم المشرق العربي (لبنان وسوريا والعراق بين بريطانيا وفرنسا)، كما تم اختراع امارة شرقي الاردن، لاسترضاء الشريف حسين، مطلق الرصاصة الأولى لتحرير الامة، ومن ثم تم اعطاء نجله الثاني الامير فيصل الاول ملك العراق، بدلاً من سوريا التي لم تقبله او لم يقبله (الفرنسيون عليها..)

شعب لبنان محاصر بالجوع، وشعب سوريا بخطر تقسيم الامر الواقع: فشماله مفتوح للغزو التركي، وفي دمشق وسائر المناطق القوات الروسية، وفي بعض انحاء الشمال قوات ايرانية تساندها قوت من “حزب الله”.

لقد دارت الارض بالأمة العربية دورة كاملة، فاذا “الجحاش ملك”، كما تقول العجائز واذا الماضي ذكريات موجعة، واذا المستقبل… لله يا مسحنين!.
يا أمة ضحكت من جهلها الامم!

PA Political Circus: Why Abbas Must Hand the Keys over to the PLO

Source

June 24, 2020

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in Ramallah. (Photo: via Facebook)

By Ramzy Baroud

The painful truth is that the Palestinian Authority of President Mahmoud Abbas has already ceased to exist as a political body that holds much sway or relevance, either to the Palestinian people or to Abbas’ former benefactors, namely the Israeli and the American governments.

So, when the Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Mohammed Shtayyeh, announced on June 9, that the Palestinian leadership had submitted a ‘counter-proposal’ to the US’ Middle East peace plan, also known as the ‘Deal of the Century’, few seemed to care.

We know little about this ‘counter-proposal’, aside from the fact that it envisages a demilitarized Palestinian state within the pre-1967 borders. We also know that the Palestinian leadership is willing to accept land swaps and border adjustments, a provision that has surely been inserted to cater for Israel’s demographic and security needs.

It is almost certain that nothing will come out of Shtayyeh’s counter-proposal and no independent Palestinian state is expected to result from the seemingly historical offer. So, why did Ramallah opt for such a strategy only days before the July 1 deadline, when the Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to launch its process of illegal annexation in the occupied West Bank and the Jordan Valley?

The main reason behind Shtayyeh’s announcement is that the Palestinian leadership is often accused by Israel, the US and their allies of supposedly rejecting previous ‘peace’ overtures.

Rightly, the Palestinian Authority rejected the ‘Deal of the Century’, because the latter represents the most jarring violation of international law yet. The ‘Deal’ denies Palestine’s territorial rights in occupied East Jerusalem, dismisses the right of return for Palestinian refugees altogether, and gives carte blanche to the Israeli government to colonize more Palestinian land.

In principle, Netanyahu also rejected the American proposal, though without pronouncing his rejection publicly. Indeed, the Israeli leader has already dismissed any prospects of Palestinian statehood and has decided to move forward with the unilateral annexation of nearly 30% of the West Bank without paying any heed to the fact that even Trump’s unfair ‘peace’ initiative called for mutual dialogue before any annexation takes place.

As soon as Washington’s plan was announced in January, followed by Israel’s insistence that annexation of Palestinian territories was imminent, the Palestinian Authority spun into a strange political mode, far more unpredictable and bizarre than ever before.

One after another, Palestinian Authority officials began making all sorts of contradictory remarks and declarations, notable amongst them Abbas’ decision on May 19 to cancel all agreements signed between Palestinians and Israel.

This was followed by another announcement, on June 8, this time by Hussein Al-Sheikh, a senior Palestinian Authority official and Abbas’ confidante, that if annexation takes place the Authority would cut off civil services to Palestinians so that Israel may assume its legal role as an Occupying Power as per international norms.

A third announcement was made the following day by Shtayyeh himself, who threatened that, if Israel claims sovereignty over parts of the West Bank, the Authority would retaliate by declaring statehood within the pre-1967 borders.

The Palestinian counter-proposal was declared soon after this hotchpotch of announcements, most likely to offset the state of confusion that is marring the Palestinian body politic. It is the Palestinian leadership’s way of appearing pro-active, positive, and stately.

The Palestinian initiative also aims at sending a message to European countries that, despite Abbas’ cancellation of agreements with Israel, the Palestinian Authority is still committed to the political parameters set by the Oslo Accords as early as September 1993.

What Abbas and Shtayyeh are ultimately hoping to achieve is a repeat of an earlier episode that followed the admission of Palestine as a non-state member of the United Nations General Assembly in 2011. Salam Fayyad, who served as the Authority Prime Minister at the time, also waved the card of the unilateral declaration of statehood to force Israel to freeze the construction of illegal Jewish settlements.

Eventually, the Palestinian Authority was co-opted by then-US Secretary of State, John Kerry, to return to another round of useless negotiations with Israel, which won the Authority another ten years, during which time it received generous international funds while selling Palestinians false hope for an imaginary state.

Sadly, this is the current strategy of the Palestinian leadership: a combination of threats, counter-proposals and such, in the hope that Washington and Tel Aviv will agree to return to a by-gone era.

Of course, the Palestinian people, occupied, besieged, and oppressed are the least relevant factor in the Palestinian Authority’s calculations, but this should come as no surprise. The Palestinian leadership has operated for many years without a semblance of democracy, and the Palestinian people neither respect their government nor their so-called President. They have made their feelings known, repeatedly, in many opinion polls in the past.

In the last few months, the Authority has used every trick in the book to demonstrate its relevance and its seriousness in the face of the dual-threat of Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’ and Netanyahu’s annexation of Palestinian lands. Yet, the most significant and absolutely pressing step, that of uniting all Palestinians, people and factions, behind a single political body and a single political document, is yet to be taken.

Considering all of this, it is no exaggeration to argue that Abbas’ Authority is gasping its last breath, especially if its traditional European allies fail to extend a desperately needed lifeline. The guarded positions adopted by EU countries have, thus far, signaled that no European country is capable or even willing to fill the gap left open by Washington’s betrayal of the Palestinian Authority and of the ‘peace process’.

Until the Authority hands over the keys to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) so that the more democratically representative Palestinian body can start a process of national reconciliation, Netanyahu will, tragically, remain the only relevant party, determining the fate of Palestine and her people.

– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of five books. His latest is “These Chains Will Be Broken: Palestinian Stories of Struggle and Defiance in Israeli Prisons” (Clarity Press, Atlanta). Dr. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA), Istanbul Zaim University (IZU). His website is www.ramzybaroud.net

PCHR: Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in Palestine (18 – 24 Jun 2020)

Source

June 25, 2020 10:26 PM

Summary

Israeli forces continued to commit crimes and multifaceted violations against Palestinian civilians and their properties, including invasions into Palestinian cities that are characterized with excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians. This week, the Israeli military’s excessive use of force killed 1 civilian, rendered 22 injuries among Palestinian civilians, including a child during raids and attacks on peaceful protests in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, which have also witnessed wide-scale demolitions and distribution of demolition notices of civilian houses and properties over the past several weeks, as Israeli occupation authorities prepare to commence its annexation plan of large parts of West Bank territories.

This week, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 191 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli Forces and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt).
 
IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity: IOF shot and wounded 22 Palestinians, including a child, with live and rubber-coated steel bullets in a show of excessive use of force against unarmed civilians in the West Bank.

In Gaza, 6 shootings against agricultural lands in eastern Gaza Strip were reported; and once against fishing boats sailing in northern Gaza sea.

IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians: IOF carried out 105 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, 88 Palestinians were arrested, including 7 children and 4 women.

Settlement expansion activities and settlers’ attacks: IOF continued its settlement expansion operations in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, PCHR documented 24 violations, including;

  • Hebron: confiscation of sheep barn, caravan, oil pump and archaeological pillars, and distributed two cease-construction notices to two houses;
  • Bethlehem: construction on a settlement-road;
  • East Jerusalem: 2 civilians forced to self-demolish their homes, demolition notices given to two buildings and a house at al-Madares St.; several demolition notices in al-‘Isawiya; 3 houses demolished; confiscation al-Abbasy family land in Silwan village; confiscation a blacksmith workshop and tools; raid on mechanic shops in al-Sawahra and Abu-Dis;
  • Nahalin village: car wash and a house demolished; notice to evacuate a land and to cease rehabilitation work at an agricultural land; and confiscation of a construction vehicle;
  • Salfit: notice to cease-construction on an agricultural room and a rainwater well; 1 house self-demolished and another residential building (3-storey) demolished; other demolitions included: 1 residential facility; 7 small commercial facilities; 1 barracks; under-construction apartment and sports center wall;
  • Ramallah: demolition of 3 houses, including 1 under-construction;
  • Northern Jordan Valley: 48 olive trees bulldozed.

PCHR also documented 2 illegal Israeli settler attacks that included assault in Bethlehem and Ramallah that injured 4 civilians.

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, since the PA ended security coordination with Israeli authorities in May 2020, hundreds of critically ill patients whose condition cannot afford delays in treatment were denied travel.

This week, 2 children died because they were unable to travel for treatment abroad. This was amplified by the restrictions put in place by IOF since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, that had already had grave implications on the humanitarian and economic situation of the Gaza Strip population.

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.

 
I. Violation of the Right to Life and to Bodily Integrity/Shooting and other Violations

  • At approximately 08:10 on Friday, 19 June 2020, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands, adjacent to the border area. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 13:00 on Friday, 19 June 2020, IOF stationed at the northern entrance to Kufur Qaddoum village’s lands, north of Qalqilia, suppressed a protest in which dozens of Palestinian civilians participated. IOF the young concussion grenades, and tear-gas canisters at them. As a result, 10 civilians, including a child, were shot and injured with shrapnel and rubber-coated steel rounds. (The names of the wounded civilians area available at PCHR)
  • At approximately 15:00 on Friday, 19 June 2020, IOF suppressed a peaceful protest at the northern entrance to al-Bireh city called for by national factions in Ramallah and al-Bireh to pretest against the Israeli annexation plan to part of the West Bank lands. Israeli soldiers stationed at al-Mahkamah checkpoint, adjacent to “Beit Eil” settlement, north of the city, fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, dozens of civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 07:30 on Saturday, 20 June 2020, reinforced with military SUVs stormed al-Maghir village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched several houses. In the meantime, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered and threw atones and Molotov Cocktails at Israeli soldiers stationed in the center of the village. Israeli soldiers opened fire at the civilians. As a result, a 22-year-old young man was shot with a rubber-coated steel round in his head. He was transferred to Palestine Medical Complex for treatment.
  • At approximately 07:30 on the same Saturday, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence in eastern al-Maghazi area in central Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 10:30 on the same Saturday, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah in central Gaza Strip, opened fire at a group of civilians in lands adjacent to the border fence. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 00:10 on Sunday 21 June 2020, Israeli gunboats stationed west of Deir al-Balah shores in central Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishermen and their boats. Fishermen, as a result of that, panicked and had to sail back to the shore fearing for their lives. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 10:30 on the same Monday, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of al-Maghazi in central Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian shepherds in lands adjacent to the border area. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:30 on the same Monday, IOF stationed at al-Hamrah checkpoint, north of the West Bank, fired rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at Palestinian civilians, who gathered near the checkpoint after Israeli soldiers stationed at the above-mentioned checkpoint prevented dozens of Palestinian buses from crossing the checkpoint to participate in a protest in Jericho against the Israeli annexation plan to be implemented in the next month. As a result, many civilians suffocated due to tear gas canisters. They received medical treatment on the field.
  • At approximately 15:00 on the same Monday, a number of civilians gathered in Bab al-Zawiyah area in the center of Hebron and threw stones at Military Checkpoint (56) established at the entrance to al-Shuhada’a street, which is closed. Israeli soldiers chased stone-throwers and indiscriminately fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a number of young men suffocated due to tear gas inhalation.
  • At approximately 16:00on the same Monday, an Israeli infantry unit stormed al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. Israeli soldiers indiscriminately fired tear gas canisters at the camp’s main street claiming that they were stoned. As a result, a number of civilians suffocated to tear gas inhalation. The infantry unit withdrew later from the camp. Neither casualties nor houses incursions were reported.
  • At approximately 17:30 on the same Monday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered in “al-Qatou’a” area, west of Deir Abu Mash’al village, adjacent to the settlement street linking between “Halmish” settlement, north west of Ramallah, to confront Israeli settlers protected by IOF, who carried out riots in the area. They young men threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at settlers’ vehicles passing through the above-mentioned street. Israeli soldiers immediately fired rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, Mos’ab Abu Ata (15) was shot with a rubber bullet in his foot. He was taken via an Israeli ambulance that handed him over to a PRCS ambulance, which referred him to Palestine Medical Complex for treatment.
  • At approximately 22:40 on the same Monday, IOF moved into Nablus from the eastern entrance (Beit Furik) and southern entrance (Howarah) and stationed in the eastern area of the city, to secure the entry of dozens of buses carrying settlers to the above-mentioned area in order to perform prayers in “Joseph’s Tomb” in Balatat al-Balad village. A number of Palestinian civilians gathered and set tires on fire, put barricades, and threw stones and empty bottles at Israeli vehicles. IOF immediately fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at civilians to disperse them. As a result, a 24-year-old young man was shot with a rubber bullet in right hand. He was transferred to Rafidia Governmental Hospital for medical treatment. Many also were suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. They received medical treatment on the field.
  • On Tuesday evening, 23 June 2020, Israeli Forces killed a Palestinian young man after opening fire at his vehicle, which collided into the traffic island in the center of al-container military checkpoint, east of Bethlehem. IOF claimed that the victim attempted to carry out a run-over attack, but according to the information collected by the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) the victim was in fact was en route to pick up his mother, in preparation for his sister’s wedding, which was supposed to be held in the evening in Abu Dies village. PCHR stresses that IOF used disproportionate force, especially that the victim posed no real threat to the soldiers’ lives in light of the heavy fortifications at the checkpoint.
     According to PCHR’s investigations and eyewitness testimonies, at approximately 15:53 on Tuesday, Ahmed Mostafa Mousa Erekat (26), from Abu Dis village in occupied East Jerusalem, was waiting in queue at al-container military checkpoint in eastern Bethlehem, to cross into Bethlehem where he was supposed to pick up his mother and sisters from a beauty salon in the city and return to Abu Dies village to attend his sister, Eman’s wedding. At approximately 15:55, when Erekat vehicle approached the checkpoint, it deviated from its path and collided into the traffic island opposite the glass room where Israeli border guard soldiers stationed. The soldiers immediately opened fire at the vehicle, wounding Erekat with several live bullets in his upper body. They pulled him out of the vehicle, threw him on the ground and prevented Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS)’s medical crew from approaching him or providing first aid; leaving him to bleed to death on the ground at the checkpoint.
  • At approximately 15:25 on the same Tuesday, IOF stationed along the border fence, east of Wadi al-Douh area, northeast of Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza Strip, sporadically opened fire at the border area and fired a number of tear gas canisters. Palestinian shepherds who were adjacent to the border fence, panicked and left the area. Neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 08:25 on Wednesday, 24 June 2020, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of Deir al-Blah in the central Gaza Strip, opened fire agricultural lands, adjacent to border area. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 18:00 on the same Wednesday, dozens of Palestinian outraged young men at the killing of Ahmed Mustafa Oraiqat (27) gathered in front of Ahmed’s house in Abu Dis village, east of occupied East Jerusalem as the protest took part in all the village streets. The protestors chanted slogans condemning the killing of Qraiqat, headed to the Mount area in the village, and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at Israeli military vehicles. A large Israeli force immediately stormed the village and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors and clashed with them for 4 hours. At approximately 13:00 on the same day, confrontations between IOF and Palestinian young men took part in Ras Kabsah area, adjacent to al-‘Izariyah village, during which IOF fired a barrage of tear gas canisters. As a result, a house owned by Walid Hatem al-Huseini was completely burned after it was hit with many tear gas canisters. Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said that its crews offered medical treatment to 9 persons who were shot with rubber bullets and more than 28 persons suffocated due to tear gas inhalation and they received medical treatment on the field.

 
II. Incursions and Arrests:

Thursday, 18 June 2020:

  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Jabal Handaza area, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Hatem Yousef al-Refati’s (37) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Bani Na’eem village, east of Hebron. They raided and searched Yehya Khader Humaidat’s (25) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Nahaleen, west of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Bara’ Ibrahim Shakarna’s (21) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Sourif village, west of Hebron. They raided and searched Malek Tayseer Ghunaimat’s (30) house and arrested him.
  • Around the same time, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Ammer village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched Ahmed Haitham Slaibi’s (22) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:10, IOF moved into Jayyous village, northeast of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Suhaib Wael Shamasnah (21).
  • At approximately 04:20, IOF moved into al-Mazra’a al-Gharbeya village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Sa’ed Taha al-Khatib’s (27) house and arrested him.
  • Around the same time, IOF reinforced with 8 military vehicles, moved into al-Beira and stationed in Um al-Sharayit neighborhood. They raided and searched Majd Ibrahim al-Boushi’s (32) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 04:30, IOF moved into Kafr Tholth village, northeast of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mahmoud Sameeh Shawahna (22).
  • At approximately 04:40, an undercover unit from the IOF “Mista’arvim” moved into ‘Aqabat Jabr refugee camp, southwest of Jericho. They sneaked by a Ford mini-bus carrying Palestinian registration plates and stationed in front of Mohammed Abdul Karim Abu Zeina’s (27) house and arrested him. Meanwhile, IOF stormed the village and surrounded their house and covered the unit’s withdrawal and took Zeina to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 05:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Adam Shafiq Obaid’s (20) house and handed Obaid a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services.
  • At approximately 05:15, IOF moved into Jinsafut village, east of Qalqilya. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Abdul Rahman Mahmoud Bashir (28), and Sami Abdul Rahman Mahmoud Shubair (33).
  • At approximately 11:00, IOF arrested Fadi Ali Alian (34), the guard of the Aqsa Mosque’s guard, while working in the mosque’s yard in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. IOF took him to one of the investigation centers in the city.
  • At approximately 15:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and handed (4) civilians summonses to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services; Anwar Sami Obaid (22), Mohammed Ayman Obaid (20), Mohammed Esmat Obaid (20), and Yousif Ali al-Kaswani (22).
  • At approximately 17:00, IOF moved into Azoun village, east of Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Qais Zahran Owda (22).
  • At approximately 20:30, IOF stationed at Za’tara military checkpoint, southeast of Nablus, north of the occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Osaid Mor’eb Jaghoub (22), from Bita village, southeast of the city. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 21:50, IOF stationed in front of Gate (104) established adjacent to the annexation wall, west of Tulkarem, arrested Ibrahim Hussam Mahmoud Darwish (23) and ‘Amer Mahmoud Helal (25), from Tulkarem.
  • IOF carried out (7) incursions in ‘Atouf, southeast of Tubas, Kafr Qalil and Bita, Southeast of Nablus, al-Nabi Saleh and Betounia in Ramallah, Azoun, east of Qalqilia, and Ezbit Shofa, north of Tulkarem. No arrests were reported.

Friday, 19 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles, moved into Kreesa village, east of Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched Husain Ali Husain Shawaheen’s (38) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 04:55, IOF moved into Qafin village, north of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (4) civilians: Mohammed Nabil Mahmoud To’ma (26), Ahmed Nabil Mohammed Sabbah (28), Ridwan Nasr al-Dein Ajouli (27), and Adeeb Mohammed Sabbah (24).
  • After Friday prayers, dozens of Susya village’s civilians, south of Hebron, a peaceful protest against the Israeli Authorities’ decision of annexing more areas in the West Bank on July 1. Meanwhile, IOF and group of Susya settlers arrived and tried to ban the protestors from entering the main street and prevented the journalists from documenting the incident. After dispersing the protestors, IOF withdrew, and no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 13:50, IOF stationed at the entrance of Salem military court, west of Jenin, arrested Abdul Rahman Taha Abu Sereya (25), from Jenin refugee camp. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 19:20, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles, moved into al-Mghayer village, northeast of Ramallah, and stationed at the main rotary of the village. They raided and searched two houses and arrested a man and a child; Mo’ayad Rayeq al-Na’san (17) and Rajeh Fayeq al-Na’san (20).
  • IOF carried out (11) incursions in Jenin and Qabatya, southeast of Jenin; Kafr Ra’i, southwest of Jenin; Bita, southeast of Nablus; Jericho, Termas’eya, and Na’leen, in Ramallah; Kafr Tholth, east of Qalqilia; Ra’s ‘Ateya, east of Tulkarem; and al-Zaweya, north of Salfit. No arrests were reported.

Saturday, 20 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Kharas village, west of Hebron. They raided and searched Tha’er Aziz Halahela’s (41) house and confiscated his Laptop, and no arrest was reported. It should be noted that Halahela was detained a month ago.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Hasan Khaled Alian’s (26) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 08:30, IOF stationed at Za’tara military checkpoint, southeast of Nablus, arrested Ali Jamal Abu Salah (28), from ‘Arraba village, southwest of the Jenin. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • IOF carried out an incursion in Derastya, north of Salfit. No arrests were reported.

Sunday, 21 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast if the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (9) civilians including (4) children. The arrestees are: Omar Marwan Obaid (18), Mahmoud Marwan al-‘Anati (21), Mahmoud Marwan Owda (16), Hasan Yaser Darweesh (14), Mohammed Murad Dari (17), Mohammed Sameeh Alian (14), Mohammed Nasim Obaid, Mahmoud Abdu Ra’ouf Mahmoud (23), and Ahmed Eyad Awda. IOF also handed Ahmed Khalil Obaid (20) and As’ad Dari (23) summonses to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services.
  • Around the same time, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Ammer, north of Hebron. They raided and searched two houses and arrested Hamad Yousef Mohammed Bahr (26) and Mohammed Ibrahim Mustafa Sabarna (24). Meanwhile, IOF stormed al-Manasra furniture store in Safa, the northern neighborhood of the city, they opened the store’s doors with special tools, and started searching until 02:30. IOF withdrew and took the arrestees to an unknown destination.
  • Around the same time, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles, moved into Yatta, south of Hebron. They raided and searched Eyad Diab Abu Qbaita’s (35) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 01:20, IOF moved into Dura al-Qara’, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Salim Edris Hamdan (32) and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:30, IOFD reinforced with two military vehicles moved into al-Mazra’a al-Gharbeyya village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Ra’fat Mohammed Saleem Abu Rabea’s (45) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 13:00, IOF moved into al-Rahmah Gate praying hall, east of al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They arrested one of the mosque’s guards and (5) civilians including (2) children and took them to al-Qashla police station in Jerusalem’s Old City. After several hours of investigation, IOF released them on condition that banning their entry to the Aqsa Mosque for a week and refer to the police station to extend their banning decision again for several months. The arrestees are: Abdul Karim Qa’oud, Shifa’ Abu Ghalya (18), Aya Abu Nab (21), Aya Ma’touq (18), Mayar al-Natsheh (16), and Maram al-Natsheh (17).

Monday, 22 June 2020:

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Tayaseer village, east of Tubas, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians; Eyad Mithqal Daraghma (35), Duham Fayez Subaih (28), works at the Palestinian National Security, and Zahi Ahmed Abu Muhsen (45).
  • At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into Beit Fujjar, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Mohammed Akram Taqateqa’s (29) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 04:20, IOF moved into Jenin, north of the occupied West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians; Waseem Jehad Nazzal (25), Ahmed Ibrahim al-Sheikh (18), and his brother Mohammed (19).
  • At approximately 05:30, IOF moved into ‘Anabta village, north of Tulkarem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Marwan Salim Hannoun (23).
  • At approximately 06:25, IOF moved into Zeita village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Bader Mazen Sayed Ahmed (24).
  • At approximately 20:00, IOF stationed at Howara’s main street in Howara village, southeast of Nablus, arrested (3) civilians from Bita village while presented near a fast-food restaurant. IOF took Sa’eed Rabah Dwaikat (18), Aseel Naser Dwaikat (19), and Ahmed Yaser Dwaikat (18), to unknown destinations.
  • IOF carried out (6) incursions in Bita, southeast of Nablus; Yatta, Sa’eer, and Beit Ammer, in Hebron; Beit Sirra and Na’leen in Ramallah. No arrests were reported.

Tuesday, 23 June 2020:

  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (9) civilians, and took them to al-Maskoubeya investigation center, then released them after several hours on financial bail of 10,000 NIS and home confinement. The arrestees are: Mhmoud Shafiq Obaid (20), Amjad Ali Obaid (24), Mohammed Waleed Obaid (21), Ali Mohammed Obaid, Majd Nayef Mustafa (19), Tamer Darwish (21), Eyas Hussain Obaid, Nayef Waseem Obaid (18), and Mahmoud Ramadan Obaid (23).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Qalandia refugee camp, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians; Isma’el Ahmed Abu Latifa (28), Abdullah Mohammed Alqam (26), and Anas Mohammed Ya’qoub (24).
  • At approximately 03:10, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Kobqr village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mujahed Basel al-Barghouthi’s (25) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into al-Saf street in Bethlehem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Ibrahim Maher Khamees (18) and Nidal Ibrahim Abu ‘Ahour (41) and arrested them.
  • At approximately 06:00, IOF moved into Wadi Hilwa village in Silwan, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Ibtisam Sharaf’s (50) house and arrested her.
  • At approximately 18:40, IOF established a temporary military checkpoint on the main entrance of al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, arrested Wahbi Ehsan al-Rimawi (29), from Beit Rima village, while passing through the checkpoint. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 20:30, IOF stationed at al-Mahkama checkpoint, near Beit Eil settlement north of the city, arrested Mustafa Mahmoud Ghawanma (17) and Ahmed Ali Safi (17).
  • IOF carried out an incursion in Qabatya, north of the occupied West Bank. No arrests were reported.

Wednesday, 24 June 2020:

  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into al-Sawahra al-Sharqeya, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Noah Fahd Za’atra’s (30) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Qalqilia. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Wael Ali Abu Qamar (44) and Yousef Mohammed al-Ra’i (39). Meanwhile, a special unit headed to arrest Bara’ (24) and his brother Hussain Ali Abtali, in Jaljoulia street in the city.
  • At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Halhoul, north of Hebron governorate. They raided and searched two houses and arrested Oday Younis al-Douda (24) and Mohammed Younis al-Bow (20).
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Qalandiya refugee camp, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Sameer Zayyat’s (46) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron and stationed at al-Duhdah neighborhood. They raided and searched Mathna Omar al-Qawasma’s (26) house and arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqilya. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Belal Mohammed Miskawi (39), and Ibrahim Shaker Shbaita.

 
III. Settlement Expansion and Settler Violence in the Occupied West Bank

i. Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property for Illegal Settlement Expansion Activities

  • At approximately 09:00 on Thursday, 18 June 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-Tawana village, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. IOF were deployed between Palestinians’ houses while the Israeli Civil Administration officers got Jamal Mohammed ‘Issa Rab’i (44)’s sheep out of the barn and confiscated the shed and steel pipes, under the pretext of establishing the barn without getting a permission from the Israeli Civil Administration Department.
  • On Thursday, the Israeli Nature Authority staff raided al-‘Abasi family land in Silwan’s Wadi al-Rababah neighborhood to seize and confiscate it. Eyewitnesses said that the Israeli Nature Authority staff moved into the land and started working on it, so the land’s owners confronted them. During which, the Israeli Nature Authority staff pepper-sprayed ‘Abasi family members, including the elderly Mohamed Dawoud (90). As a result, they sustained burns in their faces and suffocated. The Israeli police arrived at the area and informed al-‘Abasi family that the Israeli Nature Authority staff could gardening the land upon the court’s decision and if they have any objection, they could head to the court.
  • At approximately 11:00, Israeli Municipality staff along with officers from the Israeli Ministry of Interior moved into the eastern lands of al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, where distributed demolition and eviction notices. Mohammed Abu al-Humus, Head of the Follow-up Committee in al-‘Isawiya village, said that Israeli authorities distributed demolition and eviction notices in al-‘Isawiya village in favor of establishing National Parks on Palestinians’ lands. He added that Israeli authorities prevented the village residents from construction and demolished their houses, in addition to distributing notices every week, under the pretext of non-licensing. He also clarified that Israeli authorities refused to endorse the structural map that enables the residents to build and expand.
  • On the same day, IOF demolished a car wash in al-Manshiyia village, near Taqou’a village, east of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Mayor of Taqou’a Municipality, Tayseer Abu Mefreh, said that IOF moved into ak-Manshiyia village and demolished ‘Ali al-Khatib’s 70-square-meter car wash, under the pretext of non-licensing.
  • On the same day, Israeli military construction vehicles bulldozed a house in al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Ahmed Salah, Head of al-Khader village, said that IOF moved into Kherbet ‘Alia in Um Rokba area in al-Khader village and demolished Sameer Ahmed Salah’s house comprised of 2 rooms and a kitchen and built of tin plates. Salah clarified that the house sheltered 6 persons. It should be noted that IOF demolished Salah’s 150-square-meter house 6 months ago.
  • On Saturday, 20 June 2020, Eyad and Feras Nabeel Da’nah implemented the Israeli Municipality order and self-demolished their houses in Hosh al-A’war area in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, under the pretext of non-licensing. Feras Da’nah said that he was handed 2 demolition notices months ago and due to the outbreak of coronavirus, the Israeli municipality delayed the demolition. Since then, he went to several lawyers to stop the demolition, but in vain. Da’nah clarified that the municipality staff prevented him from completing the construction and ordered his brother ‘Alaa to vacate the 2 houses and self-demolish them, or they will pay the demolition costs for the municipality. He added that he submitted an application to license the houses and informed the municipality that he will pay all fines, but it refused. Da’nah pointed out that he borrowed NIS 10,000 in order to build the two houses and got a loan to live in the house with his two brothers.
  • On Sunday, 21 June 2020, Israeli authorities notified a Palestinian civilian to vacate his agricultural land in al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. Hasan Breijieh, Head of the Bethlehem office of Settlement and Wall Resistance Commission, said that IOF notified Bassam Khalil Jaber Ghunaim to vacate his 6 dunums of agricultural lands in Khelt al-Fahem area in al-Khader village. It should be noted that al-Khader village residents are continuously exposed to IOF and settlers’ attacks, including levelling lands, uprooting trees and preventing farmers’ access to their lands.
  • At approximately 10:00, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Kherbet Bereen, west of Bani Na’iem village, west of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officers handed Fayiz Imraziq al-Faqeer and Isma’il Joudi Burqan notices to stop construction works in their 50-square-meter houses built of bricks and tin plates.
  • At approximately 13:00 on Sunday, 21 June 2020, IOF moved into Khelet Kharoub area in Burqeen village, west of Salfit. They distributed a notice to stop construction works in an agricultural room and a water well, in addition to hanging another notice on an agricultural room’s wall, under the pretext of being in Area C. The room owner, ‘Abed al-Fattah Samarah, said that IOF accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Khelet Kharoub area, where I built an agricultural room and a water well. They also hanged a notice on the wall of an agricultural room built 8 months ago.
  • On Sunday, 21 June 2020, IOF stopped reclaiming agricultural lands and confiscated a bulldozer in Nahaleen village, west of Bethlehem. Hani Fanoun, Deputy of Nahaleen Municipality Mayor, said that IOF moved into Thour al-Za’faran area, south of the village, and stopped reclaiming agricultural lands. They then confiscated a bulldozer working in the land and detained its owner. Fanoun added that IOF threatened Nahaleen Municipality and Palestinian civilians not to return to the area and work on it, under the pretext of being under Israeli sovereignty.
  • On the same day, Israeli bulldozers, under IOF protection, built a new road for Israeli settlers in Nahaleen village. The new road will connect the two settlements “Beitar Illit” and “Gush Etizon”. IOF imposed tight measures on civilians to deny their access to the area. The building of this road will isolate 4 dunums of the village lands from its surrounding in a proactive step to control these lands planted with different types of trees.
  • At approximately 09:00 on Tuesday, 23 June 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Wad al-A’war area, south of Hebron. The military construction vehicles demolished Thair Farah ‘Abed al-Motaleb Ghaith’s 30-square-meter agricultural room, under the pretext of non-licensing in Area C.
  • At approximately 10:00, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Zaif area, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officers confiscated a 20-square-meter mobile caravan and a diesel fuel dispenser belonging to Ahmed Abu Rajab, who was handed a list of confiscated items to refer to the competent authorities in “Gush Etizon” settlement.
  • At the same time, IOF seized equipment from a blacksmith workshop and raided an automobile repair shop in al-Sawhrah and Abu Dies villages, southeast of occupied East Jerusalem. Activist Mohammed Hijazi said that a large force of IOF moved into al-Sawhrah village and seized equipment from ‘Urwa Ja’afrah’s blacksmith workshop. He added that IOF moved into Abu Dies village, where they raided and searched Nouh Za’atrah’s automobile repair shop.
  • On the same day, IOF demolished Mohammed al-Rajbi’s house in al-Bostan neighborhood in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, under the pretext of non-licensing.
  • Mohammed al-Rajbi said that IOF accompanied with Israeli Municipality staff raided his house sheltering him, his wife and their 4 children and demolished it with manual machineries, because their construction vehicles could reach the house location. Al-Rajbi added that he built his house in March 2020 and during that period, he received notices to stop construction works. When he lived in the house in May 2020, the Israeli Municipality issued an administrative demolition order against his house. Al-Rajbi also said that he attempted to freeze the demolition order, but in vain. After that, the court gave him until 15 June to vacate the house. Al-Rajbi clarified that his 130-square-meter house costs NIS 100,000, and that he could not self-demolish his house despite the high demolition costs that would be imposed on him after the municipality crews carried out the demolition.
  • At approximately 11:00, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Tawameen area, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officers confiscated hand tools used for excavation from Barakat Mahmoud Barakat Mur’s land.
  • At approximately 13:00, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-Thaghrah area, east of Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron. IOF raided Khaled Yousef Berighith’s house and confiscated stone pillars. IOF handed Berighith a list of confiscated items and withdrew later.
  • On Tuesday, 23 June 2020, Israeli Municipality staff hanged demolition orders on 2 buildings and a house in Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, under the pretext of non-licensing. Hussain Mohamed al-‘Abasi said that the municipality hanged a demolition order on his building comprising of a shop and 2 apartments; the first sheltering 4 persons and building on (75 sqm), and the second sheltering 7 persons and building on (40 sqm). Also, Israeli Municipality staff hanged a demolition order on Sa’ied ‘Ali al-‘Abasi’s 110-square-meter building comprising of 2 floors; each one includes 2 apartments sheltering 16 persons. It should be noted that al-‘Abasi’s building was built 60 years ago. Al-‘Abasi said that the municipality staff informed all the notified buildings’ owners that their houses will be demolished under the pretext of construction without licensing, noting that all buildings were established 25-60 years ago.
  • At approximately 07:30 on Wednesday, 24 June 2020, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Betunia village, west of Ramallah. IOF demolished ‘Abed al-‘Aziz ‘Odah al-Farroukh’s under-construction house (110 sqm), under the pretext of illegal construction in Area C.
  • At approximately 08:00, Israeli Municipality staff demolished a floor comprised of 2 residential apartments in al-Raba’ia neighborhood in al-Mukaber Mount area, south of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Ra’fat Rabai’a, an apartment’s owner, said that he was shocked when the municipality staff raided his house and demolished it, noting that a court session was supposed to be held on afternoon regarding the demolition order. Rabai’a added that the municipality staff used manual machineries to demolish the 3rd He also said that each floor was comprised of 2 apartments and built 25 years ago. He clarified that in April 2020, he repaired the house roof built of bricks, so the municipality issued an order to stop working and appointed a court session. Rabai’a said he his apartment sheltered his family comprising of 5 persons while the 2nd under-construction apartment was for his brother Mohammed.
  • At approximately 09:00, Israeli municipality bulldozes demolished Sharhabeel ‘Alqam’s house in Beit Haninah neighborhood, north of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing. ‘Alqam said that the municipality staff bulldozed his house, although a court session was supposed to be held at 13:30. He added that his 120-square-meter house, sheltered 9 persons and was built 2 months ago.
  • At approximately 09:15, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Beit Sira village, west of Ramallah. IOF were stationed at the entrance to al-Latroun Street, near a military checkpoint established there. The military construction vehicles demolished Ahmed Fayiz Abu Safia’s under-construction house (90 sqm), under the pretext of illegal construction in Area C. Meanwhile, clashes broke out between Palestinian young men and IOF, who indiscriminately fired a barrage of sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the stone-throwers. As a result, olive trees in the area were set ablaze. The Palestinian civil defense vehicles immediately arrived and put out the fire. It should be noted that Israeli authorities did not notify the mentioned house prior to the demolition.
  • At approximately 09:30, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Bardalah village, west of Jericho in northern Jordan valley. The military construction vehicles bulldozed 84 olive trees from agricultural lands and workers from private companies cut the trees with saws. The damaged trees belong to al-Rabai’a family, and they were as follows:(58) olive trees planted 9 years ago, property of ‘Izzat Faleh Mahmoud Raba’ia, were damaged.
    (13) olive trees planted 12 years ago, property of Mohmoud Faleh Mahmoud Raba’ia, were damaged.
    (7) olive trees planted 12 years ago, property of Hazza’ Faleh Mahmoud Raba’ia, were damaged.
  • At approximately 16:40, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-Jabal area in al-Tira neighborhood, southwest of Ramallah. The military construction vehicles demolished Natheer Mohammed’s under-construction house (160 sqm), under the pretext of non-licensing.

ii. Israeli Settler Violence

  • On Friday, 19 June 2020, Israeli settlers beat and pushed Wadee’ Fadi Salah (15), from al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. As a result, he sustained bruises throughout his body and received treatment in Beit Jala Governmental Hospital. Activist Ahmed Salah said the Israeli settlers attacked Salah while staying near his house in Abu Sowd area, west of the village. They chased and pushed him from a great height, causing bruises and wounds throughout his body. He was then taken to a hospital in Bethlehem.
  • At approximately 12:00 on Tuesday, 23 June 2020, Israeli settlers, from ” Nahleel” settlement, which is established on Ras Karkar lands, west of Ramallah, attacked Ratib ‘Othman Abu Fikhidah (62) , his son ‘Othman (28) and his grandson Moheeb (18) while present in their agricultural lands in the village outskirts. As a result, they sustained wounds and bruises throughout their bodies and received treatment at Palestine Medical Complex.

Netanyahu: Israel, UAE to Cooperate in Fight against Coronavirus

Source

June 26, 2020


UAE Minister of Health and Prevention, Abdulrahman Al Owais. (Photo: File)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that Israel and the United Arab Emirates would cooperate in the fight against the coronavirus – a possible boost to Israeli efforts to normalize relations with Gulf Arab countries.
Netanyahu said a formal announcement on working together with the UAE on confronting the COVID-19 pandemic was imminent and would be made by the UAE and Israeli health ministers.
The UAE’s foreign affairs ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Such cooperation would come at a time of strong Arab opposition to Israel’s plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank – territory Palestinians seek for a state – under a US peace plan.
Last week, the UAE’s minister for foreign affairs, Anwar Gargash, said it could work with Israel on some areas, including the battle against the coronavirus and on technology, despite political differences.
Addressing a military ceremony in southern Israel, Netanyahu said Israel and the UAE would collaborate in research and development and technology “to improve the well-being of the entire region”.
Gulf Arab states do not have diplomatic relations with Israel. However, due to shared concerns over Iran’s influence in the region, they are are increasingly normalizing relations cooperating against a perceived threat from Teheran.
(Palestine Chronicle, MEMO, Social Media)

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