Following Stabbing and Shooting Attack in Occupied Jerusalem, Israeli Forces Impose Collective Punishment Measures Against the City and Deir Abu Mash’al Village

June 18, 2017 3:44 PM

18 JUN  3:44 PM

Following a stabbing and shooting attack in occupied East Jerusalem on Friday, 16 June 2017, that resulted in the killing of three Palestinian youngsters and an Israeli female soldier, the Israeli forces imposed additional collective punishment measures against the Palestinian civilians in occupied Jerusalem and later in Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah, from which the three youngsters come.

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) strongly condemns these measures and stresses they fall within the collective punishment policy which is prohibited

he Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) strongly condemns these measures and stresses they fall within the collective punishment policy which is prohibited in the international human rights law. PCHR further calls upon the international community to work on protecting the Palestinian civilians in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) and ensure its application.

According to PCHR’s investigations, after the abovementioned attack, the Israeli forces completely closed Bab al-Amoud (Damascus Gate) area, Sultan Suleiman Street and all gates of Jerusalem, excluding Bab al-Asbat (Lions Gate).

They banned the Palestinians from entering and exiting the Old City and obliged the commercial stores’ owners to shut down otherwise they would pay a fine of over NIS 40,000.

The Israeli forces also erupted metal barriers in the streets leading to Bab al-Amoud and prevented vehicles from using these streets. The Israeli officers chased the civilians who were at Bab al-

The Israeli officers chased the civilians who were at Bab al-Sahera (Herod’s Gate), al-Mesrara and Nablus Street and fired sound bombs at them. Moreover, they assaulted some civilians and pushed the journalists away from the scene.

The Israeli forces mobilized all over Jerusalem, mainly the streets of Nablus, Bab al-Sahera, Sultan Suleiman and al-Mesrara. Israeli forces stopped the by-passers and checked their IDs and then deported the West Bank residents by buses distributed throughout the city. The Israeli police declared they “Deported over 350 Palestinians, who entered Jerusalem without permits, and returned them to the Palestinian territories”.

In the same context, after the identities of the three Palestinian youngsters, who carried out the stabbing and shooting attack, were disclosed, Israeli forces moved into Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah, from which the youngster come. They closed the main entrance by establishing an iron gate and closed the roads with sand and rocks, isolating the village from the world.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 05:30 on Saturday, 17 June 2017, Israeli forces moved into the said village and imposed a curfew.

The Israeli soldiers accompanied by an engineering team raided the houses belonging to the families of the three attackers and surveyed them. Before

The Israeli soldiers accompanied by an engineering team raided the houses belonging to the families of the three attackers and surveyed them. Before withdrawal, the Israeli forces handed over the owners of the houses decisions to demolish the houses without mentioning the date. The killed youngsters, whose family houses were raided, were identified as:

  1. Osama Ahmed Dahdouh ‘Ata (18). The area of his family house is 150 square meters and his family members are 6;
  2. ‘Adel Hassan ‘Ankoush (19). The area of his family house is 110 square meters and his family members are 10; and
  3. Bara’ Ibrahim Saleh Ata (18). The area of his family house is 140 square meters and his family members are 6.

Furthermore, Israeli forces raided, searched and damaged the contents of dozens of houses belonging to relatives of the attackers and confiscated permits they had to Israel.

In the meanwhile, a number of youngsters gathered in the center of the village and threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers, who immediately opened fire in response.

As a result, two Palestinian civilians were wounded. The first sustained a live bullet wound to the right leg and the other sustained a rubber-coated metal bullet wound to the right hand. They were both taken to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive the necessary medical treatment.

PCHR condemns the Israeli government’s measures against the Palestinian civilians in occupied East Jerusalem and Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah, which fall within the collective punishment policy that is internationally prohibited, especially under article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and:

  1. Demands the United Nations to work on protecting the civilians in the oPt;
  2. Calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to ensure Israel’s commitment as a State Party to the Conventions to apply them in the oPt; and
  3. Demands States Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under these Conventions by exercising their Universal Jurisdiction to hold the war criminals accountable regardless of the criminals’ nationalities and the place where the crimes were committed and put an end to the impunity they enjoy for decades.

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‘Today They Took My Son’–a film by Farah Nabulsi

Posted on January 31, 2017

A new film, soon to be released by Farah Nabulsi, the daughter of diaspora Palestinians. In June of 2016, Nabulsi launched OceansofInjustice.com , a project in which she brought together a website and a short film with the aim of drawing attention to the many injustices faced by Palestinians, especially children. Now in 2017, she hopes to raise awareness even further with this, her second short film, “Today They Took My Son.”

A screening is set to be held in London on February 5, 2017. You can find out more about it here.

Saudi, U.S., NATO genocide in Yemen threatens lives of 18 million Yemenis

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Sweeping House Demolitions: ‘A Declaration of War Against the Arab Community’

January 17, 2017 4:06 AM

Palestinians protest the demolition of eleven homes in Qalansuwa by taking to the streets and launching a general strike.


Alternative Information Center (AIC), Beit Sahour

Leaders of the Palestinian community in present-day Israel announced a general strike as hundreds of Palestinians took to the streets in protest of the demolition of 11 houses in the town of Qalansuwa.

The strike was observed in Nazareth, Umm al-Fahm, Haifa as well as Qalansuwa.

The Joint List, a coalition of primarily Palestinian parties that is the third largest bloc in the Israeli Knesset, condemned the demolitions.“The act of demolishing 11 houses, whose owners built on their private lands in Qalansuwa, is an unprecedented crime and a declaration of war against the residents of Qalansuwa and against the Arab community in Israel,” the party said in a statement. “The Arab public will not stand idle by this policy and will defend the right to fair and safe housing.”

Joint List MK Dr. Yousef Jabareen added:

“The source of this issue lies in the institutional, planning, and legal barriers forcing the Arab citizens to build without a permit as a last resort to ensure a basic right of shelter. It is inhuman and immoral to push the Arab citizens into choosing between two terrible decisions: either remain homeless or build without a formal permit.”

Joint List MK Jamal Zahalka said, in reference to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, “We suggested negotiation to solve the problem of unlicensed houses, but the government sent bulldozers to demolish them, leaving us no choice but to defend our homes.”

Another demonstration is planned for Friday in Qalansuwa. Protestors will gather at the Rabat Mosque and march in the direction of the demolished homes.

The High Follow-Up Committee for Arabs in Israel is planning further actions to upset Israel’s discriminatory city planning regime in coordination with the mayor of Qalansuwa and Joint List MKs.

Also in Human Interest — 12/25/16 DCI Report: Children in West Bank Face Deadliest Year of Past Decade

 

Palestine news

Palestinian Mayor Resigns After Israelis Demolish 10 Homes in His Town

[ Ed. note – Qalansawe is an Arab town located within pre-1967 Israel, though adjacent to the Green Line ]

Ma’an News

QALANSAWE (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities demolished 10 homes belonging to Palestinian citizens of Israel in the city of Qalansawe in central Israel on Tuesday morning, prompting a defeated mayor to resign after Israeli authorities refused for decades to approve the city’s master plan.

Local sources told Ma’an the devastating demolition campaign sparked clashes between Israeli police and residents.

Mayor Abd al-Basit Mansour visited the area along with members of the municipal council and announced he would resign from his post, as Israeli bulldozers razed the homes to ground.

Mansour told reporters that, “We have been waiting for approval of a master plan for twenty years, but our request fell on deaf ears.”

“As head of Qalansawe municipality, who doesn’t have the power to change anything, I decided to send my resignation to the ministry of interior.”

Dozens of locals crowded in the area in an attempt to prevent bulldozers from demolishing the structures, but Israeli police officers dispersed them.

One homeowner described the demolition as part of Israel’s policy of “oppression, injustices, and displacement.”

Qalansawe resident Ashraf Abu Ali criticized leaders of Palestinian communities in Israel. “What have they done to prevent demolitions in the Arab communities?” he asked, asserting that Palestinian citizens of Israel will “remain under threat as long as master plans and allocating land for construction are dealt with so recklessly.”

Another owner of one of the demolished houses Hassuna Makhlouf said he held Qalansawe’s mayor responsible, along with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

He told Ma’an that Israeli police officers treated homeowners “violently” during the demolition raid.

Continued here

First week of 2017: israel demolishes homes of 151 Palestinians, almost four times last year’s average

First week of 2017: Israel demolishes homes of 151 Palestinians, almost four times last year’s average

The IDF’s Civil Administration is carrying out Netanyahu’s vow to demolish the homes of Arabs with a vengeance.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s promise to settlers from the unauthorized outpost of Amona to enforce the law “equally” by demolishing the homes of Arabs is being strictly fulfilled.

The number of Palestinian buildings demolished in the first week of January 2017 is almost four times as high as the weekly average for 2016: 20 structures. In 2015, the average was 10 structures a week, according to the records of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

In Area C, which is under full Israeli civil and security control, between Monday and Thursday the Israel Defense Forces’ Civil Administration demolished 65 structures in Palestinian communities, and seven rainwater cisterns. The Jerusalem Municipality demolished another two homes in East Jerusalem. Some 151 people, including 90 children, lived in the buildings that were demolished.

On Monday, the day on which the Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee discussed a proposal to annex the city of Ma’aleh Adumim (east of Jerusalem) to Israel, the Civil Administration and IDF forces demolished 12 tin and wood shacks – including eight used for living purposes – in two Bedouin communities from the Jahalin tribe south of the settlement; three shacks in Bir al-Maskub; and nine in Wadi Sneysel. In total, 84 people, 68 of whom are children, lost the roofs over their heads within just a few hours.

Last August, the Civil Administration demolished structures in these communities. But the residents have nowhere else to live and were forced to build new shacks. In the 1990s, dozens of families from the Jahalin tribe were expelled from the area in order to allow the expansion of the settlement.

On Tuesday, the Civil Administration demolished 49 structures in Khirbet Tana in the northwestern part of the Jordan Valley: 13 residential structures, 9 portable toilets and the rest various agricultural buildings. Twenty-eight adults and 22 children lost their homes because of the demolitions. Another 71 people were affected by the destruction of the agricultural structures.

Some 40 families (250 men and women) live in this ancient village of caves, east of the village of Beit Furik. In four previous raids last year, the Civil Administration demolished 150 shacks, sheep pens, tents and various sanitary structures – as well as a school that had been built thanks to European contributions. During the raid on Tuesday, a work stoppage order was also presented for the new school, which is again being constructed with European donations. The High Court of Justice had dismissed a petition of the residents of Khirbet Tana against the order to permanently evacuate their homes, but the residents have built simple new dwellings and a school because they refuse to leave the village where their families lived long before 1948, and before the IDF declared the area a firing zone.

On Wednesday, a large army force raided the lands of the village of Tekoa, southeast of Bethlehem. Here, the Civil Administration bulldozers demolished seven rainwater cisterns and another three sheds used for agricultural purposes. The head of the village council told Haaretz that one of the cisterns was dug some 25 years ago, while the others were dug more recently. Some 180 people depend on these cisterns for their livelihood. And Thursday morning, the Civil Administration demolished an agricultural structure in the village of Jinsafut, east of Qalqilyah in the West Bank.

In mid-December, the Civil Administration told Haaretz that it was holding 11 agricultural machines, mostly tractors, that were confiscated from Palestinian farmers after the IDF turned their lands in the northern Jordan Valley into a firing zone.

The Palestinians must pay the Civil Administration a ransom of a few thousand shekels to release each tractor, and make a commitment not to commit the “offense” a second time. In 2016, only two tractors were released after payment was made. In addition to their agricultural uses, the tractors also aid in transporting water to the residents and their livestock, from the springs that are located a few kilometers away from the sheds. Israel does not allow the Palestinian communities in areas under its control to connect to the water infrastructure.

Another tractor was confiscated from farmers in the northern Jordan Valley on December 21, after they tried to reach their lands on the east side of Highway 90 (named after that preacher of Palestinian population transfer, former Minister Rehavam Ze’evi).

In the final three months of 2016, the IDF conducted 20 live-fire training drills on the land of the Palestinian communities in the northern Jordan Valley. According to the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, these drills meant about 220 people – including some 100 minors from the communities of Al-Ras al-Ahmar, Khirbet Khumsa and Abzik – were ordered to temporarily leave their homes on 19 different occasions.

In the village of Al-Farisiyah, which was not evacuated, the army forbade the residents to graze their sheep on the nearby lands, then trained on the cultivated fields and even placed mobile toilets on them, B’Tselem reported. In addition, the troops cleared part of the land in the area to make it easier for military vehicles to pass, and in doing so caused additional damage to the agricultural lands.

The IDF Spokesman’s Office told Haaretz that the “firing zones in the Jordan Valley in particular, and in the area of Judea and Samaria in general, were declared firing zones with an order under the authority of the military commander of the region back in the 1970s, based on security needs. Residents found in these firing zones are doing so in violation of the law.

“Before every military drill, actions are taken whose purpose is to prevent bodily harm or damage to property, such as conducting lookouts, patrols, placing security and dialoguing with the residents of the area through the Civil Administration. During the drills, the residents are requested to leave the exercise area. The actions mentioned in response were approved through the Supreme Court in petitions that were filed in similar matters,” said the IDF Spokesman’s Office.

Dafna Banai of Machsom Watch reported on Tuesday, December 20, 2016: “All tracks connecting the Palestinian Jordan Valley with the West Bank localities of Aqraba, Beit Furik and Tubas are now blocked with earth mounds, ditches, huge boulders and locked gates. Even those opened in the past few years have now been blocked again.”

“Only Gokhia Gate, which separates the Jordan Valley from Nablus and Tubas, is open today [since Sunday, according to local residents]. All of a sudden, there are no ‘security grounds,’ no ‘danger to Palestinians because the area is used for maneuvers’ – of all times, when the maneuvers are on, the gate is open (to enable war machines free passage without delay every time it has to be opened and closed). Near the gate, three armored vehicles and bored soldiers are seen. A military exercise is taking place again in the Palestinian Jordan Valley. We entered Al-Ras al-Ahmar, but couldn’t get through beyond the first encampment because of the thick mud. It was raining heavily this morning and the entire region turned into one big swamp,” she wrote.

“From 12 noon until 4:30 P.M., the road ascending to Tyassir and the rest of the West Bank was blocked because of the army’s maneuvers. Long lines of Palestinian vehicles were seen from Al-Malih, where two bored soldiers were stopping traffic. The soldiers had no idea when the road would be open again,” reported Banai.

“The Palestinians, mostly men, day workers on their way home from their work in the settlements – were loafing around on the road, smoking. Some asked us to ask the soldiers to let them get home – here, there, 200 meters away in Al-Burj. But the soldiers claimed they had orders not to let anyone through, no exceptions. We were also in phone contact with Mahdi, who was on the other [western] side of the blockage, and he spoke of long waiting lines there as well. Worst of all – school and kindergarten children (like 5-year-old Rina) had to wait on the road for 4.5 hours! They roamed around among the APCs, begging the soldiers for some food; they hadn’t had anything to eat since morning,” she wrote

PCHR Weekly Report: 67 civilians abducted, including 10 children; one woman shot and wounded

08 JAN
1:55 AM

In its Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territories for the week of 29 Dec. 2016 – 04 Jan 2017, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) found that Israeli forces continued systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Israeli forces conducted 74 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and a limited one in the Gaza Strip. 67 civilians, including 10 children, were abducted. 10 of them, including 6 children, were abducted in occupied Jerusalem.

Israeli attacks in the West Bank:

In the West Bank, Israeli forces stationed at Qalandia checkpoint at the northern entrance to occupied Jerusalem opened fire at Jihan Hashimah (35) from al-‘Issawiya village, northeast of the city. As a result, she was hit with 3 bullets to the leg and then abducted. The aforementioned woman was walking near the cars track when she was shot. Israeli forces claimed she had a knife.

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 74 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During these incursions, Israeli forces abducted at least 67 Palestinian civilians, including 10 children. Ten of them, including 6 children, were abducted in occupied Jerusalem. Moreover, two civilians were abducted while participating in Kufor Qaddoum weekly protest in addition to arresting the wounded woman at Qalendia checkpoint. Therefore, during this week, the number of abducted civilians mounted to 70, including 10 children and a wounded woman.

On 02 January 2017, in light of the cold and rainy weather during these days, Israeli forces and their heavy equipment demolished 11 dwellings built of tin plates belonging to al-Jahalin Bedouin family in Sneisel Valley area in al-Khan al-Ahmar, east of occupied Jerusalem, rendering 87 individuals homeless. Most of them were children and women.

On 04 January 2017, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a house comprised of two apartments belonging to ‘Adnan Shweiki in Sho’afat neighbourhood, north of occupied Jerusalem. The 300-square-meter house sheltered two families comprised of 14 members, including 10 children, with a rental contract.

On the same day, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a house belonging to the family of ‘Amer ‘Ebeido in Beit Hanina village, north of the city. The two-storey house sheltered two families of 8 members, including a child.

Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians. 2 Palestinian civilians, one of them was a child, were abducted at military checkpoints.

Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:

In the Gaza Strip, in the context of targeting fishermen in the Sea, on 01 January 2017, Israeli gunboats opened fire at Palestinian fishermen, northwest of Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip, and chased them. The shooting recurred in the same area on 03 January 2017 and on 04 January 2017 in the western side of Jabalia. The boats were sailing in those incidents within 3 nautical miles. However, neither causalities nor damages to the boats were reported.

On 04 January 2017, an Israeli gunboat hit a fishing boat manned by Mohammed al-Hessi (33) from al-Shati’ refugee camp. As a result, the boat capsized and the fisherman is so far missed. The boat was sailing within 5 nautical miles off al-Soudaniyah shore in the northern Gaza Strip.

In the context of targeting the border areas, on 01 January 2017, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel opened fire at agricultural fields to the west of the fence. The shooting recurred on 01 January 2017. No casualties were reported.

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

Israeli settlement activities:

Israeli Settlement activities continued in the West Bank. On 03 January 2017, Israeli forces and its heavy equipment demolished 14 dwellings and 22 other facilities in Kherbet Tana, east of Beit Foriq village, east of Nablus. Those facilities belong to 15 families comprised of 86 members, including 33 children. It should be mentioned that the Israeli forces demolished dwellings in Kherbet Tana 4 times before in 2016 in order to Empty them of their original inhabitants and seize them under the pretext that they are located within Area C.

Israeli attacks against non-violent demonstrations:

Israeli troops engaged in the use of excessive force against peaceful demonstrations protesting settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall.

Following the Friday prayer, on 30 December 2016, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized demonstrations in Bil’in and Ni’lin villages, west of Ramallah, and al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of the city, protesting against the annexation wall and settlement activities. Israeli forces forcibly dispersed the protests, firing live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs. They also chased the protesters into olive fields and between houses. As a result, many of the protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises as Israeli soldiers beat them up. Israeli forces also abducted Jamil al-Barghuthi (45) from Deir Abu Mash’al, northwest of Ramallah, and Ghaleb Helmi Shtaiwi (25) from Kafer Qadoum village, while both were participating in the weekly demonstration of Kafer Qadoum village.

Recommendations to the international community:

Due to the number and severity of Israeli human rights violations this week, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) called on the international community to follow certain recommendations. Among these were a recommendation that the international community act to stop all Israeli settlement expansion activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territories through imposing sanctions on Israeli settlements and criminalizing trading with them.

In addition, PCHR calls upon the United Nations to confirm that holding war criminals accountable in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a precondition to achieve stability and peace in the regions, and that peace cannot be built at the expense of human rights.

Click here for the full text of the report.

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