Weekly report on israel’s terrorism against the State of Palestine (18-24 May 2017)

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

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

(18-24 May 2017)

  

  • Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child while a girl succumbed to her wounds in Bethlehem.
  • A Palestinian civilian was killed and a photojournalist was wounded by a settler in Howarah village, south of Nablus.
  • 46 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children and 2 women, were wounded in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
  • Israeli forces conducted 48 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 11 limited ones in Jerusalem.
  • 94 civilians, including 32 children and a wounded young woman, were arrested.
  • Forty-one of them, including 18 children, were arrested in Jerusalem, while 19 others, including 9 children, were arrested during peaceful protests.
  • Israeli forces continued settlement activities in the West Bank.
  • The settlers set fire to a tractor in Burin village, south of Nablus.
  • Hundreds of settlers stormed al-Qsa Mosque yards while the Israeli soldiers attacked the Mosque’s guards.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea.
  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 10th
  • Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
  • 8 civilians, including 6 children, were arrested at military checkpoints in the West Bank.

 

 

Summary

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (18-24 May 2017).

 

Shooting:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child at the Container checkpoint, northeast of Bethlehem, while a girl from Beit Fajjar, south of the city, succumbed to her wounds. Moreover, a civilian was killed and a photojournalist was wounded by a settler during a peaceful protest in Howarah village, south of Nablus. They also wounded 46 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children and 3 women. Thirty-three of them, including 10 children, were wounded in the West Bank while 13 others, including 2 children, were wounded in the Gaza Strip. In the Gaza Strip, the Israeli naval forces continued to chase and open fire at the Palestinian fishermen in the sea. Israeli forces also continued to open fire at farmers in the border areas.

 

In the West Bank, in excessive use of force, on 18 May 2017, a settler killed a Palestinian civilian and wounded a photojournalist. The aforementioned civilian was wounded when the settler opened fire at Palestinian protesters crossing Nabus-Ramallah Street in Howarah village, south of Nablus.

 

In another crimes of excessive use of force, on 22 May 2016, Israeli forces stationed at the Container checkpoint on al-Nar road, northeast of Bethlehem, killed a Palestinian child and claimed that he attempted to carry out a stab attack. It should be noted that the West Bank cities witnessed on the abovementioned day a strike in all aspects of life, therefore, there was no eyewitness to approve or disprove the Israeli claim.

 

On 20 May 2017, Fatima Taqatqa (16), from Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem, succumbed to her wounds according to Palestinian medical sources. The girl was wounded on 15 March 2017 with a bullet to the head when Israeli forces opened fire at her at “Gosh Etzion” settlement intersection, south of the city.

 

In the same context, the majority of the West Bank cities witnessed protests in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. Israeli forces used force against these protests and other protests against the annexation wall and settlement activities. As a result, 46 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children were wounded. Twenty-three of them sustained live bullet wounds and the 23 others sustained metal bullet wounds, in addition to the photojournalist that was wounded as a settler opened fire at him as mentioned above. The injuries were as follows:

 

  • Protests in solidarity with the prisoners: 40 civilians were wounded, including 10 children. Twenty two of them were wounded with live bullets, 18 others were wounded with metal bullets. Twenty seven of them, including 8 children, were wounded in the West Bank while 13 others, including 2 children, were wounded in the Gaza Strip.
  • Weekly protests against the annexation wall and settlement activities: 5 civilians, including 2 children, were wounded with metal bullets.
  • At military checkpoints: a young woman was wounded and then arrested.

 

Israeli forces directly targeted ambulances and press crews. As a result, a Palestinian Medical Relief ambulance sustained damage at the western entrance to Beit Foreek village, east of Nablus.

 

In the Gaza Strip, concerning Israeli attacks on fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea, on 21 May 2017, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Shati’ refugee camp, west of Gaza City, opened fire at the Palestinian fishermen sailing within 4 nautical miles. No casualties were reported.

 

On 22 May 2017, Israeli gunboats stationed off Rafah shore, south of the Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire at fishing boats (twice) and chased them. no casualties were reported as well.

 

Concerning attacks on the border area, on 24 May 2017, Israeli forces stationed in watchtowers, east of al-Zaitoun area, southeast of Gaza City, opened fire sporadically at the lands adjacent to the border area. neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

Incursions:

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 48 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and 11 others into Jerusalem and its suburbs  During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 75 Palestinian civilians, including 23 children. Forty-one of them, including 18 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem and its suburbs, while 19 civilians, including 9 children, were arrested while participating in protests supporting the Palestinian prisoners. The number of arrested persons this week raises to 94, including 32 children.

 

Settlement activities

 

On 19 May 2017, 2 settlers set fire to a bulldozer at the main entrance to Burin village, south of Nablus. They wrote slogans on the walls in Hebrew signed with “Price Tag”.

 

On 21 May 2017, a group of settlers attacked the eastern part of Burin village, south of Nablus. They attempted to stop the power supply to that area and to attack a number of houses.

 

On 22 May 2017, a number of settlers gathered in the center of Howara village, south of Nablus. They rioted in the streets until late night.

 

Regarding settler attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property in Jerusalem, on 24 May 2017, hundreds of settlers unprecedentedly stormed al-Aqsa Mosque yards in the Old City upon calls to celebrate 50 years of Israeli occupation of the city. During the raid, Israeli forces harshly beat the Islamic Endowments (Awqaf) officers and arrested 3 guards after beating them as well.

 

Restrictions on movement:

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Details

 

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

 

Thursday, 18 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into the southern area in Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to prisoner Hatem Mahmoud al-Jamal (46), who is sentenced to life. They then withdrew, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit ‘Awa village, southwest of Hebron, and stationed in al-Semiyah neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mo’tasem Naser Abu Thare’i (23) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Tubas and stationed in the vicinity of al-Shifa Medical Center of the Health Work Committees at the southern entrance to the city. They topped the house roof and turned it into a military watchtower until the morning.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Mansher, west of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Anas Amir Abdul ‘Aziz Rasras (53), locked the family members in a room and then questioned Anas and his wife on the spot about a sum of money. The soldiers then confiscated Ana’s car that cost NIS 94,000. Anas Rasras said to PCHR’s fieldworker that after the soldiers withdrew, they family lost a sum of money of about NIS 700 and 2 cell phones that belong to his sons.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Um Rokbah area, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Qusai Omer Sbaih (18) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested ‘Alaa’ Nasri Taqatqa (24) and Mahdi Salah Taqatqa (22).

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Surif village, northwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Malek Mohammed al-Hour (21) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into several neighborhoods in Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested 3 civilians namely Omer Abdul Qader Abu ‘Aisah (55), who was arrested from his house in al-Duhdah area, Murad Sa’di Qawasmah (33) and Ma’moun Husain al-Natshah (36), who were arrested from their houses in Abu Katilah neighborhood.

 

  • At approximately 10:30, Israeli forces moved into ‘Aboud village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Husain al-Sabti (23) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 18:30, following the protest that was organized in Howarah village, south of Nablus, an Israeli Intelligence officer introduced himself as “Captain Tareq” called Jamal Mohammed ‘Aref Shalu, one of al-Walid Bus Company. The officer asked Jamal if he owns the bus driven by the terrorists to Howarah village. Jamal said: “Yes and I drove elderly persons in it”, without using the word terrorists. The officer ordered him to bring the bus to Howarah checkpoint and threatened him if he did not follow his orders, the officer will confiscate all the company buses. Mustafa Zaid Shalu Jamal’s nephew, stepped into the bus and took it to the abovementioned checkpoint, which was closed. The officer, who was waiting for him, ordered him through loudspeakers to move the bus towards Howarah military camp. The officer then kept the bus in custody and handed Mustafa a legal notice confirming it was kept in custody for “transporting terrorists to an illegal organization.”

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: al-Thaheriyah and Ethna villages, south of Hebron and Kafer al-Deek village, west of Salfit.

 

 

Friday, 19 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Aqraba village, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yusuf Mousa Deriyah (48), an ambulance officer. They then arrested him and confiscated the ambulance, which belongs to ‘Aqraba municipality. The Israeli forces accused Yusuf that he used the ambulance to hinder the movement of an Israeli settler’s car. It should be noted that the settler ran over Palestinian civilians and opened fire at a civilian and journalist, causing the death of the civilian and injury to the journalist in Howarah village, south of the city.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Beta village, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Abdul Karim Duwaikat (21) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Deir Netham village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Raja’i Abdul Ra’ouf al-Khatib (17).

 

  • At approximately 23:30, Israeli force moved into ‘Ein Yabrub village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched a secondary school for boys. They confiscated a surveillance camera and then withdrew.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyah; Joyous village, northeast of the city; Ethna, Beit Awla and al-Burj villages in Hebron.

 

Saturday, 20 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Aydah refugee camp, north of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ya’qoub Hammad Hammad (22) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Shuweikah Suburb, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested 3 civilians namely Mohammed Khaled Shaker Naifah (25), Monther Abdul ‘Aziz Akabriyah (50) and Amjad Jehad Ahmed Abu Zahrah (45).

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into ‘Ezbet Shufah, east of Tulkarm. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Muhanad Salem Isma’il Abdul Razeq (36).

 

  • In the evening, Palestinian medical sources announced that Fatma Jabrin ‘Ayed Taqatqa (16) from Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem, succumbed to her wounds.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 16:30 on Wednesday, 15 March 2017, Fatma was hit with a live bullet to the head shot by the Israeli soldiers. The Israeli forces claimed that she attempted to carry out a run-over attack in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem. She was arrested and taken via an ambulance of Magen David Adom to “Shaare Zedek” Medical Centre in Jerusalem. Fatma stayed at the ICU where she was attached to ventilators and anesthesia in the abovementioned hospital until her death was announced on the same day. At that time, Fatma’s family refused the Israeli forces’ claims that she attempted to carry out a run-over attack. They said that Fatma always drive the car and she is the only girl for her brothers, as the family enjoy an excellent social status. The family added that the accident happened because Fatma lost control over the car.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Beit Ummer and al-Thaheriyah villages in Hebron and Howarah village, south of Nablus.

 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 00:40, Israeli forces moved into Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to E’teraf Bajes Hajjaj (45) and then arrested him. It should be noted that the abovementioned civilian was a former prisoner, who served more than 5 years in the Israeli jails.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Kamal Fawaghrah (19) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, and stationed in Safan neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Talal Mohammed Metleq Za’aqiq and then arrested his son Mohammed (22).

 

  • At approximately 07:00, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Shati’ refugee camp shore, west of Gaza city, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 4 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

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

 

Monday, 22 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 00:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Asker refugee camp, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Bahaa’ Ghazi Abu Keshek (17), Mo’tasem Majdi al-Refa’I (17) and Mohammed Anis al-Ashqer (17).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’ village, south east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested Malek (17) and Hazem Rateb al-Badan (18).

 

  • In a new crime of excessive use of the lethal force, Israeli forces stationed at the Container checkpoint, at Wad al-Nar road, northeast of Bethlehem, killed a Palestinian child, claiming he attempted to carry out a stab attack. According to PCHR’s fieldworker, at approximately 16:30 on the same day, Israeli forces opened fire at Ra’ed Ahmed ‘Essa Jararhah (Radaiah) (15), from al-‘Obeidiyah village, north of Bethlehem, claiming he attempted to carry out a stab attack at the Container checkpoint. As a result, Ra’ed sustained several live bullet wounds and died immediately. Following this crime, the Israeli police spokeswoman for the Arab media, Loba Samri, stated that “According to the preliminary information, it is apparently a stab attack against Border Guard officers, who neutralized him. The medical crews later announced Ra’ed’s death in the area and no casualties were reported among the Israeli soldiers. Moreover, the Israeli police continued the investigations to reveal all details that were not clear yet.” It should be noted that on the abovementioned day, the Wes Bank cities have witnessed an open strike to all life aspects. As a result, no eyewitnesses were found to confirm or deny the Israeli narrative.

 

  • At approximately 19:00, a number of Palestinian civilians from Kherbet Safa, west of Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, rushed to put out fire that was set to trees near the security fence adjacent to “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem. Israeli forces arrived at the area and chased the civilians. They then arrested 3 civilians and took them to the abovementioned settlement and released them at midnight. The arrested civilians were identified as Ghazi Mohammed Ahmed ‘Adi (33), Omer Mohammed Ekhleil (28) an Jamal Nayef ‘Adi (25).

 

  • At approximately 07:50, Israeli gunboats stationed off Rafah shore in the southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats and chased them. However, no casualties were reported.

 

  • At approximately 21:00, Israeli gunboats stationed off Rafah shore in the southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats and chased them. However, no casualties were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Halhoul, al-Samou’i, al-Thaheriyah and ‘Aqabet Taffouh villages in Hebron.

 

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 15:30 on Tuesday, 23 May 2017, Israeli forces stationed at a hill overlooking Street (60) adjacent to the western entrance to Selwad village, northeast of Ramallah, fired several live bullets at Taqwa Bassam Hamma (19) from the abovementioned village. Taqwa was waiting a cab to take her to Ramallah. An Israeli soldier shouted at her to stop and then opened fire at her. As a result, she sustained a live bullet to the right side and fell to the ground. Eyewitnesses said to PCHR’s fieldworker that 2 soldiers went down of the hill and carried the wounded civilian up to the hill. After 10 minutes, a PRCS ambulance and David Maegan Adom ambulance arrived  at the area. A Palestinian paramedic carried Taqwa and took her to the ambulance. On its way to a hospital in Ramallah, the Israeli soldiers forced the ambulance to stop and then moved Taqwa to the Israeli ambulance. The eyewitness said after two hours, he called the Palestinian ambulance officer. The officer said he knew from medical sources that Taqwa was transferred to the French Hospital in Jerusalem to receive medical treatment. Her medical condition was not identified yet.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Yatta, al-Samou’I, Deir Samet and Taffuh villages in Hebron.

 

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into several neighborhoods in Hebron. In Khelet Hadour neighborhood, the soldiers broke a door of a house belonging to Hamed Abdul ‘Aziz Da’doush Zahed (67), but did not raid it. The soldiers claimed they broke it mistakenly. As a result, the house inhabitants were panicked. The soldiers also raided and searched many other houses as follows:
    1. A house belonging to Mustafa Kamel Shawer (55). They arrested the house owner and confiscated a sum of money an cell phones;
    2. A house belonging to Yusri Hashem al-Hashlamon (28), who was arrested then;
    3. A house belonging to Omer Abdul Hai al-Qaimari (37), who was arrested then;
    4. A house belonging to Salah Eden Mohammed Zughair (33), who was arrested then; and
    5. A house belonging to ‘Adnan Mohammed ‘Eid al-Zarow. The Israeli forces confiscated of about NIS 2000 from his house.

 

  • In the meantime, another Israeli force raided and searched a house belonging to Nedal ‘Omran al-Qawasmah (50) in Beit Kahel village, west of Hebron. The six family members were detained in the living room and guarded by the Israeli soldiers. The also interrogated the house owner and then confiscated a sum of money of about NIS 2000 and JD 1000 that belong to Nedal’s wife. They then withdrew, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Awla village, west of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ra’ed Abdul ‘Afow Mohammed al-‘Omlah (28). They then withdrew, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Beta village, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested ‘Alqam ‘Essa Hamayel (26).

 

  • At approximately 06:30, Israeli forces stationed at military watchtowers, east of al-Zaytoon neighborhood, southeast of Gaza, opened fire sporadically at agricultural lands adjacent to the border area. As a result, the farmers were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

Palestinian Civilian Killed and Journalist Wounded after Israeli Settler Opens Fire at them in Howarah Village, South of Nablus

  • In a new crime committed by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians, on Thursday morning, 18 May 2017, an Israeli settler killed a Palestinian civilian and wounded a photojournalist. According to PCHR’s investigations and eyewitnesses’ testimonies, at approximately 11:30 today, dozens of Palestinian civilians made their way from the center of Nablus via buses towards Howarah village, south of the city. The buses stopped in front of the Education Directorate building, south of Nablus, on the main Ramallah-Nablus Street. After civilians stepped out of the buses, some of them started closing the street from both sides in light of steps in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners’ legitimate demands in the Israeli jails on their 32nd day of an open hunger strike.  At approximately 12:10, a white car with an Israeli registration plate and travelled by a settler wearing a Kibbah on his head was heading from Za’atarah Intersection towards Nablus.  After passing the cars with high speed, the driver attempted to run over a number of protesters.  When a Palestinian ambulance driver saw the settler, he stopped the settlers’ car.  The settler then took his gun out and opened fire at the protestors. As a result, Mo’ataz Hussein Helal Bani Shamsah (22), from Bita village, south of Nablus, was hit with a bullet to the head and immediately died.  Moreover, Majdi Mohammed Soliman Ishtayah (35), a photojournalist at Associated Press Agency, was hit with a bullet to the right hand.  An Israeli military vehicle then arrived at the scene, and the soldiers heavily fired tear gas canisters at the Palestinian protestors to disperse them and evacuate the settler from the area.

 

  • Use of excessive force against peaceful demonstrations protesting settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall

 

Demonstrations in Protest against the Annexation Wall and Settlement Activities

  • Following the Friday prayer on 19 May 2017, Palestinian civilians and International activists organized a demonstration in the center of Kufur Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the eastern entrance to the village in protest against closing that entrance since al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli forces heavily fired metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 5 civilians, including 2 children, one of them was identified as ‘Awad Mansour ‘Obaid (9), sustained metal bullet wounds to the lower limbs of their bodies.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized demonstrations in Bil’in and N’ilin villages, west of Ramallah, an al-Nabi Saleh, northwest of the city, protesting against the annexation wall and settlement activities and in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. Israeli forces forcibly dispersed the protesters, 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 protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises as Israeli soldiers beat them up. In the meantime, Israeli forces arrested Mustafa Jamal al-Khawaja (15) from Ni’lin village.

 

Demonstrations in Solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails

 

  • West Bank:

 

  • At approximately 11:30 on Thursday, 18 May 2017, a number of Palestinian young men gathered near the entrance to “Psagot” settlement established on the northern outskirts in al-Birah. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the fence of the abovementioned settlement. The Israeli soldiers fired sound bombs, tear gas canisters, and rubber-coated metal bullets at them and chased them. The Israeli forces then arrested Mohammed Samir ‘Azaizah (15).

 

  • At approximately 17:30 on the same Thursday, Palestinian civilians organized a protest in the center of Qalqiliyah and headed towards the eastern entrance to the city known as “DCO”. They chanted slogans supporting the prisoners in the Israeli jails. The Israeli forces then fired metal bullets at them. As a result, Zahrah Wahib Khadraj (35) sustained a metal bullet wound to the lower back and was taken to Dr. Darwish Nazal Hospital to receive medical treatment.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer on 19 May 2017, hundreds of Palestinian civilians performed the prayer at the intersection of Bita village, south of Nablus upon a call from the National Committee to Support the Prisoners to perform the Friday prayer in the confrontation areas with the Israeli forces to support the prisoners’ legitimate demands. At the end of the prayer, the civilians threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers, who fired live and metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, an 18-year-old civilian sustained a two-two bullet wound to the legs. He was then transferred to Rafidia Governmental Hospital in Nablus. Moreover, the father of the wounded civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the buttock and was medically treated in Beta Medical Center. It should be noted that both civilians are from Osarin village adjacent to Bita village.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, hundreds of Palestinians organized a protest in the vicinity of Beit Furik and Bet Dajan villages, east of Nablus, in solidarity with Prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. The protestors made their way towards Beit Dajan Gate, which was closed 2 years ago. When they approached the gate, the Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters and metal bullets at the protestors and medical and press crews. The soldiers fire a tear gas canister at the back of an ambulance belonging to the Palestinian Medical Relief Society driven by Dr. Ghassan Hamdan. As a result, the tear gas canister broke and penetrated the rear window. The soldiers also directly fired another a tear gas canister at a car belonging to Trans Media Company travelled by Joudah Najeh Joudah Abu Nejmah (32), a broadcast engineer from Hebron, and Amoun al-Sheikh, Reporter of Palestine TV Channel. As a result, both suffered tear gas inhalation. Moreover, Naser Khalil Abu Jaish (47), Member of the Political Bureau of Palestinian People’s Party (PPP) and Coordinator of the Committee of National and Islamic Factions in Nablus, from Beit Dajan, sustained a metal bullet wound to the right leg.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, Palestinian civilians organized a demonstration and made their way from a set-in tent in al-Mahd square in the center of Bethlehem towards the northern entrance to the city in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike the Israeli jails. When the protestors arrived at Bilal Ben Rabah Mosque (Rachel’s Tomb) near the military checkpoint between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, the Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. During that, dozens of the Palestinian civilians threw stones and empty bottles at the military watchtower and the soldiers. After short period, a number of Israeli soldiers dressed like civilians attacked the stone-throwers and fired live bullets at them. They also arrested 6 civilian; two of whom were identified as Ahmed ‘Oudah and Osayd Abu al-Halawah.

 

  • On Friday afternoon, Palestinian civilians organized a protest at the main entrance to Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah, in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli forces, who fired sound bombs, tear gas canisters, live bullets and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. As a result, a 17-year-old child sustained a live bullet wound to the right thigh. He was taken to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive medical treatment and later left the hospital.

 

  • Around the same time, dozens of Palestinian civilians from Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, gathered in a set-in tent that was established in the center of the city, in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. The civilians then made their way towards the eastern entrance to the village where there was an Israeli military watchtower. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned entrance, a large Israeli force deployed on the main road. The young men threw stones at the soldiers, who fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them and chased them. As a result, a number of young men suffer tear gas inhalation. The Israeli forces also arrested Hasan Mohammed Hasan Sabarnah (17), who was in front of his family house,and took him to the abovementioned watchtower. In the same time, a similar demonstration took place in al-Zawiyah Gate area in the center of Hebron.

 

  • At approximately 14:30 on the same Friday, Palestinian civilians organized a protest in the center of ‘Aboud village, northwest of Ramallah. They made their way towards the main entrance to the village, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. When the protestors approached the abovementioned entrance, the soldiers fired live and metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 4 civilians, including a child, sustained live bullet wounds. They were transferred to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah and left after receiving the medical treatment. The Israeli forces also arrested Ibrahim Hasan Balas (23) after attacking him.

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on Saturday, 20 May 2017, a number of Palestinian young men gathered near ‘Atarah checkpoint, north of Ramallah. They threw stones at the Israeli soldiers and set fire to tires. The Israeli soldiers chased the stone-throwers and fired sound bombs, tear gas canister and live bullets at them. As a result, a 16-year-old civilian from Jafna village, north of the city, sustained a live bullet wound to the right thigh. He was transferred to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive medical treatment.

 

  • At approximately 13:30 on Sunday, 21 May 2017, a number of Palestinian young men gathered at the center of Silwad village, northeast of Ramallah. They made their way to the main entrance to the village, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli soldiers fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. During that, the soldiers attacked Mo’men Haroun Edrees (15) and beat him before arresting him. However, no casualties were reported.

 

  • Around the same time, dozens of Palestinian young men organized a protest in the center of Jericho, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. They made their way towards the northern entrance to the city. When the protestors approached the abovementioned checkpoint, they threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers. The soldiers fired live and metal bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets and sound bombs at them in response. As a result, 8 civilians sustained metal bullet wound to the lower limbs of their bodies and received medical treatment by the PRCS ambulance on the spot.

 

  • At approximately 13:40, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a peaceful protest in al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, with the participation of civilians from the neighboring areas in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. They made their way towards the main entrance to the village near the military watchtower established on the village lands. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers, who immediately fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a 26-year-old civilian from Beit Rima village, sustained a two-two bullet wound to the abdomen, and a 15-year-old child from Kafer Ein village, northwest of the city, sustained a metal bullet wound to the leg. Both were taken to Yasser Arafat Hospital in Salfit to receive medical treatment.

 

  • At approximately 15:00 on the same Sunday, Israeli soldiers chased a number of children in Wad Qaboun area near al-Rama Suburb neighborhood in the northern area in Hebron, and fired live bullets at them after Israeli military patrols were stoned. After that, the soldiers arrested 2 children and took them to the detention center in “Kiryat Arba” settlement. The children were identified as Hamzah Eyad al-Bou (15) and Ahmed Mohammed al-Bou(15).

 

  • At approximately 09:30 on Monday, 22 May 2017, a number of children gathered near an Israeli military gate established on the main street in a housing project, east of Jericho. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the soldiers, who fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them and chased them. They then arrested 5 civilians, including 2 children, namely Hamzah Suleiman Khamis (16), Feras Khalil Maharmah (17), Suleiman Khalil Maharmah (20), Mahmoud Jamal Mohammed Lafi (21), all of them are from ‘Aqabet Jaber refugee camp, south of the city, and Mohammed Khalil Sarai’ah (23) from ‘Enata, northeast of occupied Jerusalem.

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on the same Monday, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered at the crossroad of Deir Sharaf village, northwest of Nablus. They set fire to tires in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. Several Israeli patrols rushed to the area and then fired tear gas canisters and metal bullets at the protestors. As a result, a 21-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the head, and a 28-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the right leg. They were transferred to Rafidia Governmental Hospital in Nablus.

 

  • On Monday afternoon, Palestinians organized a protest that made their way from a set-in tent established near Qalandiya refugee camp, north of occupied Jerusalem towards Qalandiya military checkpoint. When the protestors approached the checkpoint, the Israeli soldiers fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canister at them. The area turned into an arena for confrontation that continued for hours. The soldiers then topped the commercial and residential buildings adjacent to the abovementioned checkpoint overlooking the main street. After that, hundreds of Palestinian young men, who were present in the area, threw stones and empty bottles at the soldiers. The PRCS crews announced that 8 protestors, including 5 children, were wounded. Four civilians sustained live bullet wounds, and the 4 others sustained metal bullet wounds. The PRCS crews also said that one of the injuries was classified between moderate and serious as a young man sustained a live bullet wound to the abdomen. He was transferred to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah.

 

  • At approximately 13:30, a number of civilians gathered in al-Zawiyah Gate area in the center of Hebron. They threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers stationed at the entrance to al-Shuhada’ Street at which a checkpoint was established. The soldiers patrolled the area and fired tear gas canisters. Israeli backups arrived from al-Shallalah Street and deployed between the shops. They then arrested Husam Hesham ‘Atawnah (23) and took him to an unknown destiantion.

 

  • Around the same time, a number of Palestinian civilians organized a protest at the main entrance to Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli forces, who fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a 27-year-old civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the left leg. He was transferred to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive medical treatment.

 

  • Gaza Strip:

 

  • At approximately 14:00 on Friday, 19 Amy 2017, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered on al-‘Awdah Street, which is about 300 meters away from the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Khuza’ah and ‘Abasan al-Kabirah villages, east of Khan Yunis, in response to calls for protests in the border area in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike and in rejection to the Israeli imposed closure on Gaza. A number of the participants set fire to tires while a number of them headed towards the abovementioned border fence. They attempted to raise the Palestinian flags above the security fence. The soldiers stationed along the border fence fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them and the agricultural lands between the abovementioned villages. The shooting sporadically continued for about 3 hours. As a result, 2 civilians were wounded while they were in the eastern side of al-Farahin neighborhood in ‘Abasan al-Kabirah village. They were transferred to Gaza European Hospital and their medical condition was classified as moderate. The wounded civilians were identified as:

 

  1. Amin Mohammed Ibrahim Samour (21) from Bani Suheila. He sustained 2 live bullet wounds to the abdomen and pelvis, noting he suffers from a previous disability in his hands. He was wounded when he was about 40 meters away from the border fence.
  2. Mousa Zaye ‘Ouda Samour (24) from the eastern area. He sustained a live bullet wound the entered his left side and left from the abdomen. Mousa said to PCHR’s fieldworker that he was injured when he was in a land to harvest parsley. The land is about 300 meters away from the abovementioned border fence, east of al-Farahin in ‘Abasan al-Kabirah.

 

  • Around the same time, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered and headed to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Buraij, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike and in rejection to the Israeli imposed closure on the Gaza Strip. The protestors threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed there. The soldiers fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 3 civilians, including a child, sustained live bullet wounds. They were taken via a PRCS ambulance to al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al-Balah to receive medical treatment. Their wounds were classified as moderate. The wounded civilians were identified as:
  1. Anas Walid al-Louh (17) was hit with a live bullet to the right leg;
  2. Fares Taher al-‘Awawdah (21) was hit with a live bullet to the right thigh; and
  3. Mohammed Wajdi al-‘Aklouk (22) was hit with a live bullet to the left thigh.

 

  • At approximately, 14:30 on the same Friday, Israeli forces stationed in the military watchtowers, east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, fired live and metal bullets and tear gas canisters at dozens of Palestinian young men, who gathered  near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The young men threw stones at the Israeli soldiers in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. As a result, ‘Ahed Maher Abdul Rahman Abu Wadi (21) from al-Joron area in Jabalia, sustained a live bullet wound to the right instep causing He was transferred to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia and the medical sources classified his injury as serious.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces stationed in military watchtowers, east of “Nahal Oz” site, east of Gaza, fired live and metal bullets and tear gas canisters at dozens of Palestinian young men, who were present near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The young men threw stones at the Israeli soldiers in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. The clashes continued until at approximately 19:00. As a result, 5 civilians sustained live bullet wounds and were taken to al-Shifa’ Hospital in Gaza. Their wounds were classified as moderate.

 

  • At approximately 15:00 on Sunday, 22 May 2017, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered and made their way towards the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Buraij, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails and in protest against the Israeli imposed closure on the Gaza Strip. The protestors threw stones at the Israeli soldiers, who fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, Mohammed Samir Baroud (29) sustained a live bullet wound to the right knee. He was taken via a PRCS ambulance to al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al-Balah to receive medical treatment. His wounds were classified as moderate.

 

  • At approximately 17:00 on Monday, 22 May 2017, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Kahn Yunis, fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at dozens of Palestinian young men, who gathered near the abovementioned border fence, east of Khuza’a village, in response to calls for protests against the Israeli imposed closure in the Gaza Strip. A number of participants set fire to tires when they were about 300 meters away from the border fence. Some of them headed to the security fence raising the Palestinian flags. When the participants approached the abovementioned border fence, the soldiers fired live bullets around them to disperse them, but no casualties were reported.

 

  • At approximately 15:00 on Tuesday, 23 May 2017, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered and made their way towards the border fence between the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Buraij, in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails and in protest against the Israeli imposed closure at the Gaza Strip. The protestors gathered near the abovementioned border fence and threw stones at the Israeli soldiers, who fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, Khalid Husni al-Ghamri (17) sustained a live bullet wound to the abdomen and right hand. He was transferred via a PRCS ambulance to al-Aqsa Hospital in Deri al-Balah to receive medical treatment. His injury was classified as serious and he underwent a surgery. Khaled is so farin the intensive care unit.
  • At approximately 17:00 on Tuesday, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Kahn Yunis, fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at Palestinian young men, who gathered near the abovementioned border fence, east of Khuza’a village, in response to calls for protests against the Israeli closure of Gaza. A number of participants set fire to tires on the street that is about 300 meters away from the border fence and while a number of them raising the Palestinian flags headed towards the security fence. When they approached the abovementioned border fence, the Israeli soldiers fired live bullets in their vicinity to disperse them, but no casualties were reported.

 

  1. Continued closure of the oPt

 

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

 

Gaza Strip

 

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

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

Tulsi Gabbard and the Litmus Test

By Richard Edmondson

Tulsi Gabbard, the US congresswoman from Hawaii who introduced the “Stop Arming Terrorists Act” earlier this year, has been winning a lot of accolades (including on this blog) for her opposition to the war in Syria and US efforts to overthrow the country’s president, Bashar Assad. But of course in America, the real measuring stick of any politician, the litmus test if you will, is where they stand on Israel.

Last month I put up a post entitled Blessed Are the Peacemakers that included a video of a Gabbard town hall meeting in her home state as well as a commentary on the situation in Syria. The writer of the commentary, Yvonne Lorenzo, praised Gabbard for publicly condemning Trump’s April 6 missile attack on Syria, an attack which killed at least 14 people. But in response to the article, one of our readers, Robert Stiver, posted a comment about Gabbard’s position, or perhaps more precisely lack of a position, on the ongoing crimes being committed by Israel against the Palestinian people.

Robert lives in Hawaii and says he has contacted Gabbard’s office on a number of occasions–partly to express his support for the Stop Arming Terrorists Act, but also to discuss the Palestine-Israel conflict. With regard to his concerns over the latter, however, the congresswoman has failed to respond in any kind of meaningful manner, he says.

His comment led me to consider reaching out to Gabbard myself. And so I did. Here is the email I sent. You can click on the image to expand it.

I sent the above email to Gabbard on April 20–just over a month ago. I have yet to receive a response.

Ending US aid to Israel might not completely solve the problem in Occupied Palestine, but it would go a long way. There are presently more than 120 Israeli settlements (and countless other “outposts”) on occupied Palestinian land. No logical justification can be mounted for maintaining a program of sending billions of US tax dollars a year to support the Zionist state while these settlements continue to exist. They are all illegal. They have actually been formally declared illegal by the UN Security Council–in a resolution that was adopted in December of last year and that was not vetoed by the Obama administration.

So the justification for ending US aid is there–morally and now, with the passage of the Security Council resolution, even legally–and Gabbard should grab it. But she isn’t. In fact, she is doing almost exactly the opposite.

Not long after Robert posted his comment, another one of our readers, Rene, also posted a comment on Gabbard. In Rene’s view, the House member from Hawaii is not a “peacemaker,” but rather “just another ‘controlled opposition’ member” whose job is to confuse an already confused public. To support this thesis, Rene included a number of links, including to the video below in which Gabbard can be seen speaking at a 2016 event sponsored by the World Values Network. The mission of the World Values Network, according to its website, is “to disseminate universal Jewish values in politics, culture, and media, making the Jewish people a light unto the nations.”

In her comments, Gabbard talks about wanting to “stand strong with our ally and partner, Israel,” and then in the same sentence goes on to say she opposes “oppression, persecution, and genocide.” Voicing support for Israel while claiming to have humanitarian concerns of this nature is a shameful and disgraceful display of hypocrisy. As I have pointed out in previous posts, Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians probably meets the legal definition of genocide.

On January 5 of this year, the US House of Representatives, by way of response to the Security Council’s declaration of the settlements as illegal, passed House Res. 11 condemning the vote and accusing the UN of being “one-sided and anti-Israel.” Gabbard voted against that measure. However, she has supported an alternate bill, House Res. 23, and even signed on to it as a co-sponsor.

H.R. 23–you can go here to read the text of it–lauds the US-Israel “special relationship” and asserts that the US “remains unwavering” in its commitment to stand by the Zionist state as it meets its “myriad challenges.” These include terrorism as well as “civil conflict in neighboring states and the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran.” The measure also talks about “shared values of democracy and the rule of law” that supposedly are enjoyed by peoples of the two countries forming the “special relationship,” which leads us to ask: what exactly are these Washington politicians talking about? What commitment to “democracy and the rule of law” can Israel be said to be pursuing when it imposes a blockade/occupation upon some 4.5 million people–people who have no right to vote in Israeli elections? The blockade of Gaza has been going on for 10 years and the occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem enters its 50th year this year. With no end in sight. And this is what they refer to as “democracy and the rule of law”?

When Gabbard and the other Congress members who support H.R. 23 talk about “shared values,” are they trying to imply that Americans support apartheid? That we condone bulldozing people’s homes as a form of punishment? H.R. 23 also criticizes the “delegitimization” of Israel. Are these people living on another planet? The answer to that in a way may be yes. For that in a sense is what life in Israeli-occupied Washington is: it’s like living on another planet–in which all the lies of the mainstream media are believed, those who try to tell the truth are labeled as purveyors of fake news, and where boycotting Israel is “anti-Semitic.” Whenever you set foot on this planet you mind becomes automatically enslaved. Gabbard doesn’t seem to be immune from this process.

You can also go here to read about Gabbard’s alleged ties to Bharatiya Janata, or the BJP, the Hindu nationalist party of India. I don’t know enough about the politics of the BJP to comment one way or the other on it, but the article is at least worth reading, and it does discuss Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a BJP member, who has long been said to be intent on forging a closer bond with Israel (maybe he’s jealous of the “special relationship”). The writer also discusses the Hawaii congresswoman’s reputed ties to casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson–something that is also mentioned as well in a second article here. About all I can say to any of this is to repeat what my mother told me when I was growing up: you are known by the company you keep.

A bit more about the World Values Network (WVN) in closing. Each year the group sponsors a “Champions of Jewish Values International Awards Gala.” The video above shows Gabbard speaking at last year’s event. An article about that event can be found here. The article is written by Shmuley Boteach, the so-called “America’s rabbi” who has authored numerous books and is a familiar face on American television. Boteach seems to be affiliated with the WVN in some manner, at least he is featured prominently on the group’s website. At any rate, his article is devoted to giving a full report on last year’s awards gala, offering a summation of remarks made by the different speakers, including Gabbard’s. The congresswoman is spoken of highly, including her service in the US military. Interestingly, it seems Sheldon Adelson was also present at the event. Boteach refers to it overall as an “unforgettable evening” attended by “a who’s who of Jewish philanthropists and defenders of Israel.”

That was last year–the “4th Annual Champions of Jewish Values International Awards Gala.” This year’s event–the 5th Annual Gala–is scheduled to take place tonight, May 21, in New York. I could not ascertain whether Gabbard is returning as a speaker this year, but perhaps not surprisingly Boteach has a new article up. The piece, posted Friday at The Hill, seems to have a two-fold purpose: plugging the event and demonizing Syrian President Bashar Assad at the same time (perhaps the author is hoping to achieve a synergistic effect). At any rate, Boteach seems fixated upon the latest propaganda stew over a “crematorium” supposedly being operated by the Syrian government.

“If the phrase ‘Never again’ is to have any meaning, the United States, Israel, or some other power that stands for morality and against the evils of genocide, must immediately bomb the Syrian crematoria,” he writes.

This is quite ironic given that it seems to be at cross purposes with everything Gabbard was trying to accomplish with her “Stop Arming Terrorists” bill.  Which kind of brings us in a roundabout way back to the subject of the litmus test. How is the congresswoman stacking up? The answer seems to be not too well.

The Palestinian Refugees – 69 years and counting

The Palestinian Refugees – 69 years and counting…

This collection of some of the most compelling pieces Al-Shabaka has published contextualizes and discusses the unique difficulties of Palestinian refugees displaced across the Middle East – from becoming refugees a second or third time due to the ongoing Syrian civil war to over-researching camps “famous” for tragedy while under-researching other refugee situations and exile communities.

Facing Double Discrimination

Palestinian Refugees from Syria: Stranded on the Margins of Law

By Mai Abu Moghli, Nael Bitarie, and Nell Gabiam

Al-Shabaka Policy Analysts Mai Abu Moghli, Nael Bitarie, and Nell Gabiam analyze the effects of the war in Syria on Palestinian refugees through a succinct, country by country analysis of the legal and social obstacles they face beyond those faced by other refugee communities, and identify immediate steps that local and international communities should take to address their safety and human rights. Read more…

Palestinians on the Road to Damascus

By Ahmad Diab

Ahmad Diab, in this Al-Shabaka Commentary, focuses on the fate of the besieged Palestinian refugee camp of Al-Yarmuk to illustrate the predicament of Palestinian refugees caught up in the Syrian Nakba. Never allowed to be fully Palestinian or fully Syrian, they are, like the rest of the Syrian people, forced to make harsh political choices to survive, their fate as murky as the fate of Syria itself. Read more…

The Price of Statelessness: Palestinian Refugees from Syria

By Rosemary Sayigh

In this Commentary, Rosemary Sayigh explores how the way neighboring Arab states differentiate between Syrian and Palestinian refugees mirrors a differentiation at the level of the United Nations. She notes, for instance, that while donations have flooded in for displaced Syrians fleeing the civil war, the donations needed to aid the Palestinian refugees of Syria are lacking due to intertwined levels of discrimination. Read more…

Unwelcome and Invisible

Unwelcome Guests: Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon

By Dalal Yassine

In this Policy Brief, Dalal Yassine examines the legal status of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and argues that the country’s institutional racism not only deprives Palestinian refugees of their human rights but also serves to undermine the right of return. Read more…

The Invisible Community: Egypt’s Palestinians

By Oroub el-Abed

Oroub El-Abed examines the legal status of Palestinians in Egypt, including positive signs of change in the wake of the Egyptian revolution. Read more…

Trapped by Denial of Rights, Illusion of Statehood: The Case of the Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon

By Jaber Suleiman

Jaber Suleiman explores the bid by the Palestine Liberation Organization and Palestinian Authority to join the United Nations as a member state, complicating the already precarious status of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. This Policy Brief addresses the way in which Palestinian refugees are facing the double-edged challenge of denial of their rights and the illusion of statehood. Read more…

The Mechanics of Dispossession

Decades of Displacing Palestinians: How Israel Does It

By Munir Nuseibah

Al-Shabaka Policy Analyst Munir Nuseibah identifies six of the methods Israel uses to displace Palestinians, and discusses two: displacement by personal status engineering, and by urban planning. He calls on human rights advocates and organizations to apply the more recently developed transitional justice approach to deal with the mass human rights violations carried out as a matter of policy. Read more…

Refugees: Israeli Apartheid’s Unseen Dimension

By Hazem Jamjoum

Hazem Jamjoum explains in this Commentary how the Israeli denial of the Palestinian right to return is a cornerstone of Israel’s colonial-apartheid project, and how there can never be a durable peace without the implementation of this right. Read more…

External Actors

Uneasy but Necessary: The UNRWA-Palestinian Relationship

By Randa Farah

Randa Farah’s Policy Brief explores the United Nations Relief and Works Agency-refugee relationship. Farah argues that UNRWA took on an exaggerated role that mirrored that of a welfare government-in-exile and that it is a unique organization, but neither static, homogenous, nor apolitical. Read more…

Bartering Palestine for Research

By Mayssun Succarie

This Commentary by Mayssun Succarie discusses “research tourism:” the practice of over-researching Palestinian camps with a higher tragedy profile (such as Shatila), as opposed to others that have still faced tragedy but aren’t as famous for it (such as Burj al-Barajneh, 15 minutes away from Shatila). Read more…

israel’s war on Palestine’s food supplies: Gaza’s fishermen and farmers attacked from sea and air

Gaza’s fishermen and farmers attacked from sea and air

Crops on a farm in Gaza, severely damaged by herbicide sprayed by Israeli planes. B’Tselem investigated and published this photo, February 2016.

Israeli forces fire at Gaza fishermen, spray pesticides on Palestinian crops

By Ma’an
May 09, 2017

GAZA CITY — Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the besieged Gaza Strip on Tuesday morning, locals told Ma’an.

Fishermen said that Israeli forces shot at Palestinian fishing boats in two separate incidents off the northern coast of Gaza on Tuesday morning.

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

Tuesday morning’s events came a day after Israeli forces shot and injured a Palestinian fisherman with live fire off the coast of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip.


Replacing the machine guns with water cannon. The navy does this when a boat has international observers in it. Filmed by International Solidarity Movement

Meanwhile, Gaza farmers told Ma’an that Israeli drones sprayed pesticides on Palestinian crops along the border with Israel in central and southern Gaza on Tuesday morning.

The pesticides, they said, damage crops in the area, which is Gaza’s main agricultural region.

The army spokesperson also said she would look into the case.

Earlier this year, Gazan farmers said that Israeli forces regularly sprayed weed killers on both sides of the border fence to guarantee a clear view of the area for the army.

However, Gaza Ministry of Agriculture agronomist Wael Thabet told Ma’an at the time that the chemicals could travel up to 1,200 metres through the air away from the buffer zone, burning crops and causing Palestinian farmers huge economic losses.

Palestinians who work near the Israeli-designated “buffer zone,” which lies on both the land and sea sides of Gaza, often come under fire from Israeli military forces, as the authorities have not made clear the precise area of the designated zone.


Encounter between Gaza fishermen and Israeli patrol boats

By Harriet Sherwood, Guardian
July 20, 2011 — just a short quote from her Tweets

One IDF boat just circling our boats about 50m away. Other boat a bit further away.

A lot of resources devoted to a few tiny fishing boats.

Sea is calm today – except our little bit. Backwash creating lot of waves. They keep sounding siren. But we have all cut engines.

I’m told that the point of the IDF continually circling us is to create continuous waves and noise. Makes fishing harder.

One fishing boat just been swamped by backwash. They are giving up and going back to port.

The photo below has been used many times in the last three years to illustrate Israeli naval vessels firing at fishing boats from Gaza. No date, no credit,but it appears to be what it says it is.

How israeli schools help sabotage peace prospects

How Israeli schools help sabotage peace prospects

A display of Israeli-style community policing before an audience of hundreds of young schoolchildren was captured on video last week. Were the 10-year-olds offered road safety tips, advice on what to do if they got lost, or how to report someone suspicion hanging around the school?

No. In Israel, they do things differently. The video shows four officers staging a mock anti-terror operation in a park close to Tel Aviv. The team roar in on motorbikes, firing their rifles at the “terrorist”.

As he lies badly wounded, the officers empty their magazines into him from close range. In Israel it is known as “confirming the kill”. Everywhere else it is called an extrajudicial execution or murder. The children can be heard clapping.

It was an uncomfortable reminder of a near-identical execution captured on film last year. A young army medic, Elor Azaria, is seen shooting a bullet into the head of an incapacitated Palestinian in Hebron. A military court sentenced him to 18 months for manslaughter in February.

There has been little sign of soul-searching since. Most Israelis, including government officials, call Azaria a hero. In the recent religious festival of Purim, dressing up as Azaria was a favourite among children.

There is plenty of evidence that Israel’s security services are still regularly executing real Palestinians.

The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem denounced the killing last week of a 16-year-old Jerusalem schoolgirl, Fatima Hjeiji, in a hail of bullets. She had frozen to the spot after pulling out a knife some distance from a police checkpoint. She posed no threat, concluded B’Tselem, and did not need to be killed.

The police were unrepentant about their staged execution, calling it “a positive, empowering” demonstration for the youngsters. The event was hardly exceptional.

In communities across Israel this month, the army celebrated Israel’s Independence Day by bringing along its usual “attractions” – tanks, guns and grenades – for children to play with, while families watched army dogs sicking yet more “terrorists”.

In a West Bank settlement, meanwhile, the army painted youngsters’ arms and legs with shrapnel wounds. Blood-like liquid dripped convincingly from dummies with amputated limbs. The army said the event was a standard one that “many families enjoyed”.

The purpose of exposing children at an impressionable age to so much gore and killing is not hard to divine. It creates traumatised children, distrustful and fearful of anyone outside their tribe. That way they become more pliant soldiers, trigger-happy as they rule over Palestinians in the occupied territories.

A few educators have started to sense they are complicit in this emotional and mental abuse.

Holocaust Memorial Day, marked in Israeli schools last month, largely avoids universal messages, such as that we must recognise the humanity of others and stand up for the oppressed. Instead, pupils as young as three are told the Holocaust serves as a warning to be eternally vigilant – that Israel and its strong army are the only things preventing another genocide by non-Jews.

Last year Zeev Degani, principal of one Israel’s most prestigious schools, caused a furore when he announced his school would no longer send pupils on annual trips to Auschwitz. This is a rite of passage for Israeli pupils. He called the misuse of the Holocaust “pathological” and intended to “generate fear and hatred” to inculcate extreme nationalism.

It is not by accident that these trips – imparting the message that a strong army is vital to Israel’s survival – take place just before teenagers begin a three-year military draft.

Increasingly, they receive no alternative messages in school. Mr Degani was among the few principals who had been inviting Breaking the Silence, a group of whistle-blowing soldiers, to discuss their part in committing war crimes.

In response, the education minister, Naftali Bennett, leader of the settlers’ party, has barred dissident groups like Breaking the Silence. He has also banned books and theatre trips that might encourage greater empathy with those outside the tribe.

Polls show this is paying off. Schoolchildren are even more ultra-nationalist than their parents. More than four-fifths think there is no hope of peace with the Palestinians.

But these cultivated attitudes don’t just sabotage peacemaking. They also damage any chance of Israeli Jews living peacefully with the large minority of Palestinian citizens in their midst.

Half of Jewish schoolchildren believe these Palestinians, one in five of the population, should not be allowed to vote in elections. This month the defence minister, Avigdor Lieberman, called the minority’s representatives in parliament “Nazis” and suggested they should share a similar fate.

This extreme chauvinism was translated last week into legislation that defines Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people around the world, not its citizens. The Palestinian minority are effectively turned into little more than resident aliens in their own homeland.

Mr Degani and others are losing the battle to educate for peace and reconciliation. If a society’s future lies with its children, the outlook for Israelis and Palestinians is bleak indeed.

Throwing stones in israel is illegal, unless of course you are Jewish

Israeli troops filmed watching idly as settlers throw stones at Palestinians (VIDEO)

Israeli troops filmed watching idly as settlers throw stones at Palestinians (VIDEO)

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism against the State of Palestine (oPt) (04 – 10 May 2017)

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

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

(04 – 10 May 2017)

 

  • Israeli forces executed a Palestinian girl in occupied Jerusalem.
  • 24 Palestinian civilians were wounded during peaceful protests in the West Bank.
  • Among the wounded were 2 children and 5 photojournalists.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the Gaza Strip border areas, but no casualties were reported.
  • An Israeli agricultural aircraft spray fertilizers over agricultural lands along the border fence, south of the Gaza Strip.
  • Israeli forces conducted 64 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 2 limited ones in the Gaza Strip.
  • 58 civilians, including 12 children, were arrested. Nine of them, including 4 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem.
  • Israeli forces stormed Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah and opened fire inside.
  • Israeli forces continued measures to create Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.
  • 5 houses and 2 commercial facilities located within the Israeli municipality boundaries were demolished.
  • Settlers wrote curses against prophet Mohammed (pbuh) on the walls and punctured tires of 17 cars in Shu’fat neighbourhood.
  • Israeli forces continued settlement activities in the West Bank.
  • A house and a livestock barn in al-Jiftlek village, north of Jericho, were demolished.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea.
  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 10th
  • Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
  • 7 civilians, including a child, were arrested at military checkpoints in the West Bank.

 

 

Summary

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (04 – 10 May 2017).

 

Shooting:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian girl in occupied Jerusalem and wounded 24 others, including 2 children and 5 photojournalists, in the West Bank. In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces continued to pursuit the Palestinian fishermen in the sea and open fire at Palestinian farmers at the border areas.

 

In the West Bank, as part of the Israeli policy to use excessive and lethal force against Palestinian civilians, who are suspected by Israeli soldiers of intending to carry out stab attacks against the soldiers, on 07 May 2017, Israeli forces killed Fatima Hjeiji (16), from Qarawet Bani Zaid village, northwest of Ramallah, at the southern entrance to the Damascus Gate “al-‘Amoud” in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. Luba al-Samri, the Israeli police spokesperson, published a statement claiming that “According to the preliminary information available, it was an attempt to a stab attack carried out by a girl that was neutralized without injuries among the police officers.”

 

In the same context, the majority of the West Bank cities witnessed protests in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. Israeli forces used force against these protests in addition to weekly protests against the annexation wall and settlement activities. The Israeli attacks resulted in the injury of 24 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children and 5 photojournalists. Six of them sustained live bullet wounds, 11 sustained rubber-coated metal bullet wounds and 6 were hit by sound bombs. The cases of injury were as follows:

 

  • Protests in solidarity with the prisoners: 17 civilians were wounded, including 5 photojournalists. Two of them were wounded by live ammunition, 10 others were wounded by metal bullets and 5 were hit by gas canisters.
  • Weekly protests against the annexation wall and settlement activities: 6 civilians, including 2 children, were wounded. Four of them were wounded by live ammunition, a civilian was wounded by metal bullets and another was hit by a sound bomb.
  • Incursions: a civilian was wounded by metal bullets.

 

In the Gaza Strip, concerning Israeli attacks on fishermen in the Gaza Strip sea, on 04 May 2017, Israeli gunboats stationed in the sea opened fire at the Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed area, west of al-Sudaniya shore, west of Jabalia, north of the Gaza Strip. Other attacks recurred in the same area on 05 and 06 May 2017. However, neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

On 06 May 2017, Israeli gunboats opened fire at fishing boats sailing within the allowed area off Khan Yunis shore, south of the Gaza Strip. Neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

On 07 May 2017, Israeli gunboats opened fire at fishing boats sailing within the allowed area off Beit Lahia shore, north of the Gaza Strip. Similar attacks were carried out on 08, 09 and 10 May 2017. Neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

 

In the context of targeting the border areas, on 09 May 2017, an Israeli aircraft sprayed pesticides over agricultural lands 400 meters to the west of the border fence, north of al-Qarara village, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip. It should be noted since the beginning of 2017, Israeli aircrafts spray pesticides over that area under the pretext of burning the bushes for security reasons. However, the pesticides cause damage to the farmers’ crops.

 

Incursions:

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 64 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 58 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children. Nine of them, including 4 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem, while 4 others, including a child, were arrested while participating in a protest supporting the Palestinian prisoners.

 

In violation of the international humanitarian law, Israeli forces stormed on 04 May 2017, Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah. They opened fire randomly, due to which a number of patients, including children, suffered tear gas inhalation.

 

In the Gaza Strip, on 07 May 2017, Israeli forces conducted an incursion into the east of al-Qarara village, northeast of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip. They levelled lands along the border fence for few hours and withdrew later. On the same day, Israeli forces moved into the east of al-Salqa valley, east of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip. They levelled lands as well and then withdrew.

 

Restrictions on movement:

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Jewish majority

 

Concerning demolitions, on 04 May 2017, Israeli forces demolished 3 houses in al-Walaj village, west of Bethlehem, under the pretext of “building without license within the Israeli municipality boundaries.”

 

On the same day, the Israeli municipality demolished an under-construction building in al-Tour village, east of occupied Jerusalem’s Old City.

 

On the same day as well, the Israeli municipality demolished a house belonging to Ashraf Fawaqa in Sour Baher village, south of the city.

 

On the same day, the Israeli municipality demolished 2 commercial facilities in al-Eisawiya village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem.

 

In the context of Israeli settler attacks against the Palestinian civilians and their property, on 09 May 2017, settlers wrote curses against prophet Mohammed (pbuh) and racist slogans. They punctured also the tires of 17 cars in Shu’fat neighbourhood, north of occupied Jerusalem. The neighbourhood residents said the slogans were signed by the Israeli “Price Tag” organization.

 

Settlement activities

 

On 09 May 2017, Israeli forces demolished a house and a livestock barrack in al-Jiftlek village, north of Jericho. It should be noted the livestock barrack belongs to Najeh Ka’abna (48) while the house belongs to his son Ouda (20).

 

Details

 

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

 

Thursday, 04 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 00:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdullah ‘Atiyah al-‘Amour (27) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Dheisheh refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested Nasim Zaqqout (20) and Ahmed Khalil Nabhan (24).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Tal village, southwest of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Mustafa ‘Asidah (26) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Mohammed Jamal Abu Maria (22) and Husain Ramzi al-‘Alami (21).

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Howarah village, south of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Khalid Saleh Namer ‘Oudah (22) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces accompanied with several military jeeps moved into Ramallah, patrolled the area, surrounded Palestine Medical Complex in the city and stationed inside its yards. The soldiers randomly fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at the sections of the abovementioned complex. As a result, a number of patients, including children, sustained tear gas inhalation and received medical treatment in the emergency department, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli forces moved into Bal’aa village, northeast of Tulkarm. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Ahmed ‘Aref Yusuf Zuriqi (25).

 

  • At approximately 08:00, Israeli Border Guard officers stationed at “Mafia” checkpoint established at the western entrance to the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron’s Old City opened fire at Mohammed Zakariya al-Salaimah (22) from Khelat al-Natshah area in the southern area of the city. Mohammed was shot after he was detained near the abovementioned checkpoint. He sustained several live bullet wounds and then fell to the ground. Two Israeli ambulances arrived at the area and stayed there for half an hour. They did not offer first aid to the abovementioned civilian, who stayed on the ground for a while. An ambulance later transferred him to an unknown destination. The Israeli authorities claimed that Mohammed was carrying a weapon and attempted to attack the soldiers stationed at the abovementioned checkpoint. Following that, Israeli forces raided and searched the house of the abovementioned civilian an informed his wife that he was admitted to “Hadassah” Hospital in occupied Jerusalem and his injury was classified as minor. According to a video clip that was posted on social media, there was a soldier, who was 3 meters away from Mohammed and holding his ID. It should be noted that the 3-meter distance is designated by the Israeli forces to be in between the soldiers and Palestinian civilians when checking their IDs. However, no weapon or a knife appeared in the video near Mohammed. After that, a number of civilians gathered around the abovementioned checkpoint and talked to an officer known as Amal. He said that he regretted not killing him and threatened to close the whole area in the evening. The Israeli forces installed cement cubes and barbed wire fence in the vicinity of the abovementioned checkpoint. They also closed Gheith neighborhood, which is inhabited by more than 200 families, and opened a gate for their movement.

 

  • At approximately 19:15, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, west of al-Sudaniyah area, west of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fired sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 5 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (6) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Jalqamous village, east of Jenin; Jeet village, northeast of Qalqiliyah; ‘Ein Qeniya village, northwest of Ramallah; Hebron; al-Fawar refugee camp and Surif village in Hebron.

 

Friday, 05 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested 2 civilians, including a child namely Mustafa Jamal al-Badan (17), and Zaid Taleb al-Badan (20).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into ‘Asker refugee camp, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested 3 civilians namely Sameh Fares Abu Keshek (31) Abdul Rahman ‘Emad al-Asmer (21) and Khalil Ibrahim Hamzawi (28).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched 2 workshops belonging to Mohammed Sofian ‘Adwan and Baker Sa’id Abu Haniyah and then confiscated some equipment. They also raided and searched a shop for car spare parts belonging to Ahmed Mohammed Howari. They threatened to close the shop if his cooperation with “terrorists” is proven. At approximately 05:00, the Israeli forces withdrew from the village, but neither raids nor arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 14:30, Israeli forces moved into Selwad village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdul Hamid Husain Hamed (28) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 17:30, Israeli forces accompanied with several military jeeps moved into al-Moghir village, northeast of Ramallah. A number of young men gathered and threw stones an empty bottles at the soldiers, who fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullet, sound bombs and tear gas canisters in response. They also closed the eastern entrance with sand barriers causing traffic jam, but neither arrests nor casualties were reported.

 

  • At approximately 18:50, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, west of al-Sudaniyah area, west of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 4 nautical miles. The shooting continued until around 21:30. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Kafel Hares village, north of Salfit; Dura; al-Kume and al-Shyoukh villages in Hebron.

 

Saturday, 06 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Nablus and stationed in Kuroum ‘Ashour area in Ras al-‘Ein neighborhood, south of the city. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Mohammed Naser Ma’lawani (18).

 

  • At approximately 16:30, Israeli forces moved into al-Jaftalak village, north of Jericho. They raided and searched a house belonging to Anwar Mahmoud Abu Joudah and then confiscated his bulldozer used for establishing water networks for agricultural

 

  • At approximately 19:30, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore opened fire around Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 6 miles off Khan Yunis shore in the southern Gaza Strip. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

  • at approximately 19:50, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, west of al-Sudaniyah area, west of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 4 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

  • At approximately 21:00, Israeli forces accompanied with 2 military jeeps moved into al-Tabaqa village, south of Dura, southwest of Hebron. They patrolled in al-Baid neighbourhood amidst firing tear gas canisters and sound bombs in the bystreets, but no clashes erupted in the area. As a result, a number of civilians sustained tear gas inhalation. In meanwhile, the soldiers were shouting and ordering the young men to go out and confront them. The Israeli forces stayed in the village until around 23:00, but no arrests were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (7) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Qalqiliyah; ‘Azoun village, east of the city; al-Thaheriyah, Sa’ir, Taffuh, Abu al-‘Asja villages in Hebron and ‘Ein Yabrud village, northeast of Ramallah.

 

Sunday, 07 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces move into Taqqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Omer Tawfiq Abu Hlayel (25) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Omer Tawfiq Abu Hlayel (25) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Ma’sarah village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Jehad Mohammed Zawahrah (26) and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Aydah refugee camp, north of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses after which they handed summonses to Mahmoud Riyad Abu Sorour (29) and Motaz Mahmoud al-Debes (19) to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city.

 

  • At approximately 06:30, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties not material damages were reported.

 

  • At approximately 07:00, Israeli forces accompanied with several military jeeps moved about 100 meters into the east of al-Qararah village, northeast of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. They levelled the lands along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel heading northwards. The incursion continued for hours before the Israeli forces redeployed along the abovementioned border fence.

 

  • At approximately 08:30, Israeli forces accompanied with 5 military bulldozers moved about 100 meters into the west of the border fence, east of al-Salqa village, east of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip. The bulldozers levelled the lands adjacent to the abovementioned border fence. The incursion continued for 4 hours after which the bulldozers moved into the north of the eastern borders of al-Maghazi refugee camp. They then redeployed along the abovementioned border fence.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Beta village, southeast of Nablus; al-‘Aroub refugee camp and Beit Ummer village in Hebron.

 

Monday, 08 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched 2 houses belonging to Nedal and Mostafa As’ad Suwaidan in the eastern area of the village. They then withdrew from the area, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Hejjah village, east of Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yasser Mahmoud Rabe’ and a barber salon belonging to Khader Mohammed Masalhah and then confiscated 2 surveillance devices from them. The Israeli forces fired metal bullet, sound bombs and tear gas canisters while withdrawing, claiming that they were stoned. However, no more incidents were reported.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, and stationed in al-Barahish, al-Bayadah and al-Tarbiqah neighbourhoods. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Khalil Abu Hashem (50) and handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem. The soldiers also confiscated the ID of Ahmed’s son Mohammed (22). In the meantime, another Israeli force raided and searched a house belonging to Rami Bassam Khalil Za’aqiq (38) and handed him a similar summons.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into several neighbourhoods in Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested Saif al-Eslam Khamis Qafishah (25), Malek Abed al-Natshah (24) and Monjed Nader al-Qawasmah (27), who was released a week ago after serving a 9-month imprisonment in the Israeli jails.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched 2 houses belonging to Jamil Mohammed Jamil Abdul Rahman (27), a Palestinian Civil Defence officer, and Mos’ab Ma’zouz Ahmed Dalal (26). After that, the Israeli soldiers arrested them. At approximately 06:10, the Israeli forces withdrew taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Taqqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested 3 civilians, including a child, namely Mahmoud ‘Ali al-Sabbah (16), Ja’far (22) and his brother Yusuf al-Sabbah (18).

 

  • At approximately 06:20, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Sa’ir, al-Shyoukh, al-Tabaqah and Kharsa villages in Hebron.

 

Tuesday, 09 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to As’ad Abul Latif Thawabtah (28) and then handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of the city.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces move into Jayous village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched 2 houses belonging to Jehad Sobhi Kharishah (20) and ‘Amr Jehad Salim (17) and then arrested them.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Kharsa village, south of Dura, southwest of Hebron, and stationed in al-Dowar area. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdul Halim al-Talahmah (55) and then arrested his son Jamal (19).

 

  • At the same time, Israeli forces moved into Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses in Huneinah and Karisah neighborhoods and then arrested 6 civilians, including a child. The arrested civilians were identified as Moneer Mustafa Abu Sharar (33), Ja’far Taha Abu ‘Arqoub (44), his son Osama (16), Rezeq Abdullah Moslem al-Rajoub (57), Emad Mohammed Jadallah (35) and Husam Yusuf ‘Amayrah (27). Moreover, the Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to journalist Mohammed Adeeb Ahmed al-Qeeq in Naqet Nouh area, but no arrests were reported.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Sa’id ‘Abed Maskawi (20) and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Taqqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they arrested 3 civilians, including a child, namely Mousa Mohammed al-‘Amour (18), Riyad ‘Aref al-‘Amour (14) and Jom’ah Mohammed Abdul Jalil ‘Amour (24).

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Nablus and stationed in ‘Amman Street in the eastern side of the city. They surrounded a 3-storey building in the abovementioned street and then raided a metal workshop on the ground floor belonging to the heirs of Omer Sab’i Jamous. The heirs were identified as ‘Ammar, ‘Azmi, Ashraf and ‘Alaa’ Jamous. The Israeli forces confiscated 2 lathes, 2 scrapers and 2 drills. The workshop owners learnt about the raid through a call from the building residents. They hurried to the workshop, but they were detained in ‘Amman Street until the Israeli forces finished at approximately 05:00 in the morning. They claimed that the workshop manufactures primitive weapons. It should be noted 5 families make their living from the abovementioned workshop. The workshop was built in 1963 and consists of 4 shops.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. The shooting continued until approximately 09:00. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Nour Shams refugee camp, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Muhanad ‘Adnan Tawfiq Abdullah (18).

 

  • At approximately 06:50, Israeli aircrafts sprayed pesticides on the agricultural lands within 400 meters into the west of the abovementioned border fence between the Gaza Strip an Israel, northeast of al-Qararah village, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. Farmers there emphasized that they saw small planes flying low in the area. The farmers added that those planes started spraying pesticides on an area 400 meters to the west of the abovementioned border fence. The spraying continued for hours along the abovementioned border fence. It should be noted that since the begging of this year, that Israeli forces sprayed pesticides on the area under the pretext of burning bushes in the buffer zone, west of the border fence, for security reasons. However, the pesticides affect agricultural lands and damage large areas of them.

 

  • At approximately, 20:50, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Laiha village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Qalqiliyah; Hares and Kafel Hares villages, north of Salfit; Yatta and Taffouh village in Hebron.

 

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Taqqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Mousa Mohammed al-‘Amour (17) and Husain Khaled al-Badan (21).
  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into Birzeit village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched the students accommodation of Birzeit University. They then arrested 3 students namely Ahmed Tayseer al-‘Ayesh (26), ‘Amer Mohammed al-Remawi (24) and Ahmed Qasem Farah (21).

 

  • At approximately 06:50, Israeli forces accompanied with military vehicles moved about 100 meters into al-Fukhari village, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip. The Israeli military vehicles leveled lands along the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel for few hours before re-deploying along the border fence.

 

  • At approximately 06:40, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. The shooting continued until approximately 11:00. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee for fear of their lives, but neither casualties nor material damages were reported.

 

  • Use of excessive force against peaceful demonstrations protesting settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall

 

Demonstrations in Protest Against the Annexation Wall and Settlement Activities

 

  • Following the Friday prayer on 05 May 2017, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a peaceful demonstration at the main entrance to al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, in protests against the confiscation of Palestinian’s lands and in solidarity with prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the soldiers stationed at the abovementioned entrance. The soldiers fired live bullets, sound bombs, tear gas canisters and rubber-coated metal bullets at them in response. As a result, 4 civilians, including a child, sustained live bullet wounds to the lower limbs of their bodies and were transferred to Yasser Arafat Hospital in Salfit to receive medical treatment. Medical sources classified their injury as moderate. (PCHR keeps the names of the arrested civilians)

 

  • Following the Friday prayer also, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international activists organized a demonstration in the center of Kufur Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the eastern entrance to the village in protest against closing that entrance since al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli forces heavily fired metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, a 17-year-old civilian was hit by a tear gas canister to the head.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized demonstrations in Bil’in and Nil’in villages, west of Ramallah, 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 protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises as Israeli soldiers beat them up.

 

  • At approximately 17:30 on Saturday, 06 May 2017, Palestinian civilians and international activists organized a demonstration in the center of Kufur Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the eastern entrance to the village in protest against closing that entrance since al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli forces heavily fired metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, a 22-year-old civilian sustained a metal bullet wound to the hand.

 

Demonstrations in Solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails

 

  • On Thursday, 04 May 2017, Palestinian civilians organized demonstrations in several areas in Bethlehem. They made their way to the northern entrance to the city in solidarity with the prisoners, who have been on hunger strike. When the protestors arrived at the military checkpoint established at the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them and particularly targeted the journalists. As a result, 5 journalists, including a woman, sustained wounds. The wounded civilians were identified as:

 

  1. Abdul Hafith al-Hashlamoun, who works at the European Agency, was hit by sound bomb to the left leg.
  2. Safiya Omer Qawar (30), who works at Baladna  Radio in Bethlehem, was hit by  sound bomb to the abdomen.
  3. Eyad Hamad, who works at the Associated Press Agency, was hit by sound bomb shrapnel.
  4. Mousa al-Sha’er, who works at the Agence France-Presse, was hit by sound bomb shrapnel.
  5. Samer Hamad, who works at Pal Media Agency, was hit by sound bomb shrapnel.

 

  • At approximately 13:30 on the same Thursday, dozens of journalists organized a peaceful protest demanding the release of the journalists in the Israeli jails and in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike, near the entrance of “Ofer” military camp established in Betounia and Rafat villages, west of Ramallah. The protestors threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers, who fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters in response. However, no casualties were reported among the journalists.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer on 05 May 2017, hundreds of Palestinian civilians performed prayers at the crossroad of Beta village, south of Nablus. The prayers were called for by the National Committee to Support the Prisoners in the confrontation areas with the Israeli forces to support the prisoners’ legitimate demands. At the end of the prayers, the civilians threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli forces, who fired live and metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 9 civilians sustained metal bullet wounds according to estimations of Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) as they received medical treatment in the spot. However PCHR’s fieldworker was not able to obtain information about the civilians because they come from different areas and no one of them was transferred to any hospital.

 

  • At approximately 14:30 on the same Friday, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a peaceful protest in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. They made their way towards the entrance of “Ofer” military camp established in Betounia and Rafat villages, west of Ramallah. When the protestors arrived at the abovementioned camp, the Israeli soldiers fired live bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. However, no casualties were reported among the civilians.

 

  • Following the same Friday, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered at the eastern entrance to Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron, to organize a demonstration in solidarity with the prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. The protestors made their way towards the military watchtower established at the village entrance as there was an Israeli infantry unit stationed in the main road. The protestors threw stones at the soldiers, who fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them and chased them between the houses. The soldier also fired live bullets at the protestors while chasing them. As a result, a 20-year-old civilian sustained a live bullet wound to the leg and was then transferred to Hebron Governmental Hospital to receive medical treatment.

 

  • At approximately 16:00 on the same Friday, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a protest at the entrance to ‘Azmout village, northeast of Nablus. The protestors approached the abovementioned entrance, Israeli forces fired metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canister at them and chased them. They then arrested Mo’ez Rezeq ‘Amer (17) and took him to an unknown destination

 

  • At approximately 16:00 on Saturday, 06 May 2017, Israeli forces intercepted a demonstration organized by dozens of Palestinian civilians in Jouret al-Sham’ah village, south of Bethlehem, in solidarity with the prisoners on hunger strike in the Israeli jails. They stopped the protest and attacked the civilians after they forced them to step out of their cars. The Israeli forces then arrested Ahmed Zawahrah and his sons: Mohammed (21) and Ibrahim (18). Mohammed Barijah said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the demonstration moved from the center of al-Ma’sarah village and passed through Jouret al-Sham’ah village, south of Bethlehem. He added that Israeli forces intercepted the demonstration when it arrived at the main entrance to Jouret al-Sham’ah village and then attacked the civilians.

 

  • At approximately 18:00 on the same Saturday, dozens of Palestinian civilians organized a protest at the entrance to Beta village, south of Nablus. When the protestors approached the abovementioned entrance, the Israeli forces fired metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a civilian sustained  a metal bullet wound and received medical treatment on the spot by PRCS crews.
  • At approximately 15:30 on Monday, 08 May 2017, a number of Palestinian young men gathered at the entrance to al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, near the military watchtower established there. The Palestinian youngsters threw stones at the watchtower, due to which Israeli soldiers fired metal bullets, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, an 18-year-old male from Beit Rima village sustained a bullet wound to the belly. He was then taken to Yasser Arafat hospital in Salfit, where doctors classified his injury as moderate.

 

  1. Continued closure of the oPt

 

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

 

Gaza Strip

 

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

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

%d bloggers like this: