Israel Bombs in Homs Province, the Second Aggression in 48 Hours

 ARABI SOURI  

Israel bombs Al Qussayr Homs Syria 22 July 2021

Israel carried out its second bombing within two days during the Islamic holiest Eid holiday, this time it targeted some posts in the Qussayr region in the southwest of Homs province.

A Syrian military spokesperson in a statement conveyed by SANA said: “At about 1:13 in the morning today, the Israeli enemy carried out air aggression from northeast Beirut, targeting some points in the Al-Qusayr area in the Homs countryside. Our air defense media confronted the aggression’s missiles and shot down most of them, while the damage was limited to material.”

Ever since the Syrian air defense units shot down an advanced Israeli F16 fighter jet and caused severe damage to an even more advanced Israeli F35 in February 2018, Israeli fighter jets have completely avoided entering the Syrian air space to carry out their bombings, a flagrant violation of International Law, the UN Charter, the 1974 disengagement agreement and the related United Nations Security Council Resolution 350 of the same year.

The video is also on BitChute.

This latest aggression comes from northeast of the Lebanese capital Beirut; Lebanon is known to have a US-owned army with no air or air defense capabilities, furthermore, the Saudi-loyalist Lebanese officials have been trying hard to use the Lebanese army against their opponents in their country with the blessings of the USA and prevent allowing their country’s army to procure military gears from sources not approved by the United States of America. The Lebanese Army is in such bad shape that the Army commander had to go on a tour abroad literally begging for food for his troops.

The Syrian army can enforce an air shield over the Lebanese air space against Israeli intruding fighter jets and missiles but avoiding to do so in order to prevent a renewal of the Lebanese civil war as Saudi-sponsored militia will consider the Syrian air defense cover over their country as a violation of their independence and sovereignty, unlike the Israeli fighter jets which are welcomed by them! The Syrian army might, however, take the step sooner than thought before as the Israelis are repeatedly taking advantage of this particular situation to attack Syria. The Anti-Lebanon Mountains form a large, high, and tough terrain which Israel uses to fire its missiles against Syria from behind these mountains and instantly flee back to their bases.

After removing the war criminal Netanyahu who is accused of corruption, even by Israel’s standard, the current Israeli regime is trying its best to export its internal problems by instigating a regional war taking advantage of the presence of US troops in the region before their withdrawal as planned by the Biden Junta. Israel needs these US troops to be sacrificed in the war it’s trying to start to drag the United States into its war in order to protect the Israeli settlers.

The humiliating failure of the Israeli army in its latest aggression against Gaza at times of its top readiness when it was preparing for its largest military drill delivered a severe blow to the morale of the Israeli soldiers and settlers, and after its repeated humiliating failures in the face of the Lebanese Hezb Allah resistance, the Israeli leadership needs any aggression to regain some of that lost morale before its settlers start packing and return to their home countries en masses.https://syrianews.cc/israel-bombs-masyaf-in-central-syria-on-christmas-eve-as-expected/embed/#?secret=1SWGyH1kMyIsrael chooses religious anniversaries to carry out its aggression

Furthermore, the losses of the NATO-sponsored terrorists in Syria and the imminent Syrian army’s military operation to clean the regions still infested by these terrorists in parts of the north of Syria is another reason the Israelis are carrying out these attacks, to give the terrorists an illusion that they’re not alone fighting the Syrian army when needed. The Syrian leadership has vowed to liberate the last inch of Syria from these terrorists and said that these Israeli attacks will not help save those terrorists.

These latest Israeli escalations can only be seen in this context. Readers must keep in mind that any Israeli aggression is always sanctioned by the US regime and is always covered by the sitting US regime especially after the latest US-Israeli understanding dubbed ‘zero surprises’. Israel by itself is incapable of existing without such US support let alone attack its neighbors.

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‘Israeli’ Occupation Demolishes Five Palestinian Structures near Salfit

12/07/2021

‘Israeli’ Occupation Demolishes Five Palestinian Structures near Salfit

By Staff, Agencies

‘Israeli’ occupation authorities on Monday demolished five Palestinian structures in Hares village, west of the occupied West Bank city of Salfit, according to local sources.

Head of Hares Village Council, Omar Samara, told WAFA that Zionist forces demolished several commercial structures, including a blacksmith shop, a carpentry shop, car repair and wash shops in addition to a vegetable and fruit shop, all owned by siblings Saleh, Fadi and Nadi Saleh.

Samara said that this was the fourth time for the aforementioned structures to be completely demolished without any prior notice.

The Zionist occupation regime demolishes Palestinian houses and structures almost on a daily basis as a means to achieve so-called “demographic control” of the occupied territories.

The Tel Aviv regime, meanwhile, denies planning permits for Palestinians to build on their own land or to extend existing houses to accommodate natural growth, particularly in occupied al-Quds and so-called Area C, which constitutes 60 percent of the occupied West Bank and falls under full ‘Israeli’ occupation military control, forcing residents to build without obtaining rarely-granted permits to provide shelters for their families.

Ansarullah To Be ’Part of Equation’ In Defense of Al-Quds – Official

June 18, 2021

Ansarullah To Be ’Part of Equation’ In Defense of Al-Quds - Official

By Staff, Agencies

A senior member of Yemen’s Ansarullah resistance movement said his group will be an integral part of the equation to defend sacred sites in the occupied city of al-Quds against any ‘Israeli’ act of aggression.

Abdul-Wahhab al-Mahbashi told Beirut-based al-Mayadeen television on Thursday evening that his movement “will be part of the equation in defense of al-Quds” in the event of a new confrontation with ‘Israel.’

On June 3, Ansarullah leader Sayyed Abdul Malik Badreddine al-Houthi said Yemenis are part of the al-Quds equation and will be effectively present in the battle against the ‘Israeli’ regime.

Sayyed al-Houthi then praised Iran as the main supporter of resistance front in the region.

On June 6, the representative of Hamas resistance movement in Yemen expressed gratitude to the Yemeni people and government for supporting the Palestinian cause during the recent ‘Israeli’ military offensive on the Gaza Strip, which claimed the lives of at least 260 people in the besieged enclave.

“We feel brotherhood and comfort in Yemen, and this indicates the Yemeni people’s love for Palestine and al-Aqsa Mosque,” Moaz Abu Shamala said during a meeting with Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, a senior member of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, in Sanaa.

Abu Shamala said all signs confirm that the resistance is the right way to liberate occupied Palestine, Yemen Press Agency reported.

Hajja Nafisa: The story of a special bond with Al-Aqsa Mosque

Sara Dajani

9 June 2021 19:04 UTC

Meet Nafisa Khuwais, the 68-year-old lady from Jerusalem who is banned from al-Aqsa Mosque yet she continues to drive worshippers to the holy site every day using her Tuk tuk

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Al-Manar TV Channel: 30 Years of Resistance and Authenticity

Mohammad Salami

For 30 years, Al-Manar TV channel has been the authentic eye of the Islamic resistance in Lebanon and the heartbeat of all the Arabs and Muslims.

Al-Manar confrontation with the Israeli enemy started since the Channel’s establishment in 1991, two years before its crew moved to the battlefield in order to document the Resistance victory over the Zionist aggression.

The Israeli enemy launched another aggression on Lebanon in 1996; Al-Manar TV was the image of the resistance and the victory over the enemy.

Lebanon’s historical victory over the Israeli enemy in 2000 was professionally followed by Al-Manar staff that followed the resistance and the southerners movement towards the liberated villages.

In 2000, Al-Manar TV started broadcasting via the Arab satellites, reflecting the causes of all the Arab and Muslims. In this context, Al-Manar followed up the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.

The direct battle between Al-Manar and the Israeli enemy occurred during its war on Lebanon in 2006 when the Zionist warplanes destroyed the Channel’s headquarters in Beirut’s southern suburb. However, this did not prevent the TV staff from covering the enemy’s massacres against the Lebanese civilians and the Resistance’s fight as well as victory over the Israeli occupation army.

In 2008, the European satellite blocked the broadcast of Al-Manar TV Channel, paving the way to NileSat and ArabSat to take the same step later on.

In 2012, Al-Manar TV started following up the terrorist war on Syria, sacrificing the three martyrs Hamza Al-Hajj Hasan, Halim Allaw and Mohammad Mantash who were killed by the militant gunmen in Syria’s Maaloula.

The reconstruction of the main headquarters of Al-Manar TV, destroyed by the Israeli enemy in 2006, was completed in 2014. The staff returned to their original position, defeating the Zionist barbarism.

In 2017, Al-Manar TV followed up the military campaign of Hezbollah and the Lebanese army against the terrorist groups in Lebanon’s southeastern barrens, documenting the victory by preparing and broadcasting the Second Liberation Secrets series.

In 2021, the Resistance Channel conspicuously reflected the Palestinian resistance victory over the Zionist enemy after an 11-day confrontation.

In brief, Al-Manar is the TV Channel that has never abandoned the Lebanese, Arab and Islamic causes despite all the sacrifices, documenting the historical victories over the Umma enemies.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Hamas Chief in Gaza: Palestinian Resistance Used Only 50% of its Military Power During Al-Quds Sword Battle السنوار عن الرشقة الأخيرة في معركة سيف القدس: “وما خفيّ أعظم”

Source

manar-06674190016224720967

June 5, 2021

Hamas Chief in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, indicated on Saturday that the Palestinian resistance used only 50% of its military power during Al-Quds Sword battle, highlighting the military readiness to face any Zionist aggression.

Addressing the academicians in Gaza, Sinwar stressed that if the confrontation erupts again, the entire Middle East will change, underlining that there are great surprises in this regard.

Sinwar pointed out that 130 missiles were fired by the Palestinian resistance at Tel Aviv, adding that the Zionist enemy could not destroy more than 3% of Gaza tunnels.

On the other hand, Sinwar said that the Palestinian resistance will reject any attempt to keep Gaza affected by the destruction caused by the Israeli war, adding that all who plan to support the Gazans or invest in the Strip are welcomed.

Sinwar, also, noted that the PLO must be reorganized in order to be joined by Hamas and the resistance factions, emphasizing that all the political concepts that were adopted by the PLO figures before Al-Quds Sword have become useless.

 Al-Manar English Website

السنوار عن الرشقة الأخيرة في معركة سيف القدس: “وما خفيّ أعظم”

 الميادين نت

05/06/2021

رئيس المكتب السياسي لحركة حماس في قطاع غزة يحيى السنوار يؤكد أنه “إذا تفجرّت المواجهة مع “إسرائيل” مجدداً، فإن شكل الشرق الأوسط سيكون مختلفاً عما هو عليه الآن”.

رئيس المكتب السياسي لحركة حماس في قطاع غزة يحيى السنوار (أرشيف)

رئيس المكتب السياسي لحركة حماس في قطاع غزة يحيى السنوار (أرشيف)

أعلن رئيس المكتب السياسي لحركة حماس في قطاع غزة يحيى السنوار، أنه “إذا تفجرّت المواجهة مع “إسرائيل” مجدداً، فإن شكّل الشرق الأوسط سيكون مختلفاً عما هو عليه الآن، فالمقاومة قادرة على تحقيق الردع واستطاعت أن تصنع من المستحيل القوة المتراكمة”.

ولفت خلال لقاء مع الكتّاب والأكاديميين والأساتذة في جامعات بغزة، إلى أن”انتفاضة أهل الضفة الغربية والداخل شكلّت عامل ضغط أكبر من صواريخ المقاومة في العدوان على غزة، فيما الهرولة العربية للتطبيع والانقسام الفلسطيني والوضع الدولي شجعّت إسرائيل على عدوانها”. 

وكشف السنوار أن “ما خفيّ كان أعظم، ففي في الرشقة الصاروخية الأخيرة التي أعددناها، كان القرار بإطلاق كافة الصواريخ القديمة”، موضحاً أن “العدو لن يستطيع فرض واقعه المزعوم في القدس والشيخ جرّاح مستغلاً حالة الانقسام والتطبيع”.

وتابع السنوار قائلاً: “مقاومتنا المحاصرة من العدو والأقربون، تستطيع أن تدك تل أبيب بـ130 صاروخاً برشقة واحدة، والرشقة الأخيرة بمعركة “سيف القــدس” كان القرار أن تدك بكل صواريخها القديمة، وما خفيّ أعظم”، مؤكدا أن “تل أبيب التي أصبحت قبلة الحكام العرب، حولناها إلى ممسحة وأوقفتها المقـاومة على رجل واحدة”.

وأشار السنوار إلى أن “الاحتلال لم يدمّر إلا كسوراً من أنفاق المقـاومة في قطاع غزة، وفشل في تحطيم “مترو حمـاس” لأننا نعشق هذه الأرض كما هي تعشقنا، كما فشل بتحطيم قدرات المقـاومة وفي تنفيذ خطته التي تقضي بقتل 10 آلاف مقاتل من المقاومة، ولم يدمروا أكثر من 3% من الأنفاق، مضيفا أنه “إستعملنا فقط نصف قوتنا”.

وشدد على أنه “لا يمكن أن نقبل دون انفراجة كبيرة يلمسها أهلنا في قطاع غزة، ونحن بعد أيار/مايو 2021 لسنا كما كنا قبله”، مؤكداً بسياق المناسبة أن “المعركة الأخيرة أثبتت أن المقاومة الفلسطينية تضم بين صفوفها عدداً كبيراً من حملة الشهادات العليا”.

انتخابياً، كشف السنوار عن ” تقديم كل تنازل ممكن وأبدينا مرونة عالية جداً من أجل الوصول لحالة تنهي شتاتنا وتنهي الانقسام، لكن الانتخابات ألغيت، وأي شخص يريد الإستثمار بقطاع غزة أو يقدم الدعم لغزة سنفتح له الباب ولن نأخذ أي شيء للمقاومة، والأيام القادمة ستكون  اختباراً حقيقياً للاحتلال وللعالم وللسلطة لترجمة ما تم الاتفاق عليه”.

وأكمل: “أمامنا فرصة لإنهاء حالة الانقسام وترتيب البيت الفلسطيني ونقول كل ما كان يطرح قبل 21 أيار لم يعد صالحاً”، معتبراً أن “منظمة التحرير بدون حركة حمـاس وفصائل المقـاومة هي مجرد صالون سياسي، وأمامنا استحقاق فوري لترتيب المنظمة لتمثّل الجميع ولنضع استراتيجيتنا الوطنية لإدارة الصراع لتحقيق جزء من أهداف شعبنا”.

Hamas Warns “Israel” of another Round of Confrontation

05/06/2021

Hamas Warns “Israel” of another Round of Confrontation

By Staff, Agencies

The Palestinian Resistance Movement Hamas warned the “Israeli” entity over its daily incursions into the occupied West Bank, saying “another round of confrontation” could take place if Tel Aviv does not end acts of violation against the Palestinian people.

Speaking to Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency on Friday during a visit to the Tunisian capital, Tunis, the movement’s spokesperson, Sami Abu Zihri, stressed that “Israel” “does not respect agreements and carries out daily incursions into the cities of the West Bank, and the threat of displacement of the residents of Al-Quds is still present.”

“It is likely that “another round of confrontation” will occur if the ‘Israeli’ entity continues such violations,” he added.

Abu Zihri further added that the ceasefire between “Israel” and Hamas is still holding since May 21 but its future depends on the apartheid entity, adding that his movement will respect the agreement as long as “Israel” does.

“If ‘Israel’ does not comply, it is natural for us to confront it,” the Hamas official said.

In parallel, he emphasized that the sides reached “a mutual and simultaneous ceasefire agreement, not a truce,” which was “fragile, due to the bloody and criminal nature of the occupation.”

On another level, Abu Zihri welcomed recent talks between Egyptian intelligence chief Abbas Kamel and Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar in Gaza about a possible Hamas-“Israel” prisoner swap deal.

The Hamas spokesman stressed the importance of the reconstruction of the besieged Gaza Strip which was an “essential part of the dialogue that paved the way for the ceasefire.

He, however, emphasized that Hamas would refuse to link the issue of prisoners to the reconstruction aid.

“The file of Gaza’s reconstruction is linked to the outcomes of the ‘Israeli’ aggression. As for the prisoner exchange deal, its context is related to the release of Palestinian prisoners,” Abu Zihri pointed out.

It’s worth mentioning that more than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently held in some 17 “Israeli” jails, with dozens of them serving multiple life sentences.

Over 350 detainees, including women and minors, are under “Israel’s” “administrative detention”.

Abu Zihri warned against “any slowdown or delay in the reconstruction of Gaza” and suggested Egypt to lead the reconstruction project given the North African country’s “experience and competence.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, Abu Zihri said Hamas leaders have praised Iran for supporting the resistance.

“Iran has given a lot for the resistance, and we appreciate its stance on serving the Palestinian cause,” he reiterated, noting that “Hamas is keen to maintain relations with all Arab and Muslim states and not to foster a relationship with one country at the expense of another.”

Subjugating Palestinians by State Terror and Intimidation

May 30, 2021

By Stephen Lendman

Source

Historic Palestine is stolen Israeli Occupied Territory.

Since establishment of Zionist tyranny in their homeland, Palestinians have been slaughtered, displaced, intimidated, humiliated, collectively punished, denied rights afforded Jews, and confined in Israeli gulag imprisonment.

All of the above and other forms of oppression are for being unwanted Arabs in territory Israel wants for exclusive Jewish development and use.

Since establishment of the Jewish state, hundreds of thousands of Palestinian men, women, youths and children were murdered, imprisoned, tortured and otherwise brutalized for wanting to live free in their own homes on their own land — what the scourge of Zionism criminalized.

Israeli tyranny denies them rights affirmed under international law.

Every day is Kristallnacht in Occupied Palestine.

Millions of subjugated Palestinians are collectively punished by racial discrimination, economic strangulation, mass arrests, detentions, curfews, roadblocks, checkpoints, separation walls, electric fences, other barriers, neighborhood incursions, crop destruction, fishermen attacked at sea, farmers terrorized in their fields, land, sea and air attacks, bulldozed homes, land theft, ethnic cleansing, gulag imprisonment, and slow-motion genocide.

Institutionalized Israeli state terror against an entire population of indigenous people is for the crime of praying to the wrong God.

Israeli state terror is an instrument of slow-motion genocide, subjugation and controlling Palestinians by brute force and intimidation.

Ongoing relentlessly for decades, it continues with no end of it in prospect because US-dominated Western societies support what just ones abhor and don’t tolerate.

Besieged Gazans suffer most of all. Trapped with no place to hide in a virtual Israeli free-fire zone, they’re terrorized at Israel’s discretion by air, land and sea.

Activist Hanin Majadli renamed Israeli Operation Law and Order mass arrests this month Operation Intimidation and Silence to punish Palestinians “who dare to protest” for rights denied them.

Israel criminalized speech, media, academic, and peaceful demonstration rights that are critical of apartheid injustice.

Netanyahu’s Operation Law and Order is all about enforcing police state harshness against Occupied Palestinians and Israeli Arab citizens — ones who dare protest for rights afforded Jews denied them.

On Friday, journalist Farah Najjar tweeted:

“ ‘They hit my whole body – my head, my arms, my legs,’ 13-year-old Mohammed from Umm al-Fahem said.”

“He is among (hundreds) of Palestinian children who have been targeted in the Israeli police’s so-called Operation Law and Order.”

Throughout Occupied Palestine and in Israeli Arab communities, an entire generation of Palestinian youths and children is victimized by Israeli state terror, intimidation, and gulag imprisonment.

They’re kidnapped, detained, tortured and otherwise terrorized in captivity — while the West and most other world community nations de facto support Israeli state terror by looking the other way and saying nothing.

Attempting to subdue public activism for long denied justice encourages more of it.

Palestinian youths and children convicted of stone-throwing face up to 20 years of gulag imprisonment.

According to Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCIP), Palestinian youths and children, including ones engaged in peaceful protests, are prime targets for Israeli arrests and brutal mistreatment.

They’re also shot and at times killed by Israeli security forces — cold-blooded murder to intimate others against protesting for justice denied them.

In May alone, scores of Palestinian youths and children were violently arrested, detained and brutalized in captivity.

The scourge of Zionist tyranny operates against millions of Palestinians for not being Jewish.

A Final Comment

Anti-Zionism and criticism of Israel are unrelated to anti-Semitism.

Dominant hardliners in Israel and Washington falsely claim otherwise.

Zionism is tyranny by another name — a scourge threatening Jews and non-Jews alike. 

It’s extremist, undemocratic, hateful, ruthless, racist, destructive, and hostile to peace, equity and justice.

It’s contemptuous of fundamental legal, moral and ethical principles – a monster threatening everyone and everything it opposes, a cancer infesting Israel, America, other Western societies and elsewhere.

It considers Jews and others unequal, Muslims especially demeaned, Palestinians viciously persecuted and otherwise harmed.

In response to 11 days of Israeli war  on Gaza this month — along with brutalizing and mass-arresting Palestinians and Israeli Arab citizens for nonviolently protesting against Israeli ruthlessness — largely peaceful pro-Palestinian protests in US cities nationwide and in other countries included scattered incidents of anti-Israeli vandalism.

In response, a White House statement greatly exaggerated a rise in anti-Semitic attacks in defense of apartheid Israel —  falsely comparing incidents to persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany.

Nothing remotely like it went on in recent weeks or ever before in the US and West when anti-Semitism was much more commonplace than now.

Calling for a halt in “despicable, unconscionable, un-American…attacks,” the White House ignored weeks of escalated Netanyahu regime state terror throughout the Occupied Territories and against Arab Israeli citizens.

Like many times before, the White House statement showed one-sided support for Israel and indifference toward the rights of Palestinians subjugated under the boot of Zionist tyranny. 

If ruling regimes in Washington and other Western capitals wanted to eliminate most expressions of anti-Semitism in their countries, they’d end political and military support for apartheid Israel — along with demanding accountability of their culpable officials in international tribunals.

Instead, they partner with and otherwise support the highest of Jewish state high crimes — their unacceptable actions fueling anti-Semitism instead of preventing it by doing the right things, according to the rule of law.

Owner of Al-Jawarha Tower Speaks to The Palestine Chronicle: ‘We Will Never Compromise on Our Freedom’ (PHOTOS)

May 21, 2021

Owner of the Al-Jawarha Tower, Ahmad Moustafa al-Za’im, with his children. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

On May 12, Israel destroyed the Al-Jawarha tower in Gaza City, a large building of many stories and numerous flats. It was not the only tower that Israel destroyed in its latest war on Gaza. A few others too were leveled to the ground, as if they were legitimate military targets. 

Palestine Chronicle correspondent in the Gaza Strip, Mahmoud Ajjour, met with one of the main owners of the tower, Mr. Ahmad Moustafa al-Za’im. A successful businessman, al-Za’im is also a loving father of two boys and two girls. 

The Chronicle also interviewed Al-Za’im’s young daughter, Malak. Like her father, her testimony was that of pride and defiance. This is what they have to say:

Ahmad Moustafa al-Za’im:

“I have invested my whole life, everything I owned and worked hard for, in this building. Israel bombed it for no reason at all, aside from scoring a point that it simply can. It is a residential tower, which also hosted law offices, media companies, and the like. Lots of accountants and engineers were based here as well. Also, it had advertisement companies and a few clinics. We had an office that facilitates pilgrimage to Mecca. Also, an optical clinic and an office for marriage services.

“It was a thriving place of families and businesses and nothing else that could be understood, even from Israel’s point of view, as a ‘security threat’. 

“But thank God for everything in this life, good or bad. Israel has destroyed it completely. But I say it proudly, I am Ahmad al-Za’im, everything I own, my very life, in fact, my whole family, is a small price to pay for the freedom of Al-Quds, Jerusalem, for Al-Aqsa Mosque and for our people in Sheikh Jarrah. In fact, for Al-Khalil (Hebron), Jenin, Palestine ‘48 and the whole of Palestine. Thank Allah for everything. 

“My message to the Resistance: We will continue to be steadfast, you lead the way and we will march behind you. Israel will never break our will or weaken our steadfastness. We know that Israel has destroyed the tower, and all other towers to put pressure on the Resistance to relent and accept an end to the war with no achievements. But that will never happen. We will never compromise on our rights and our freedom, no matter the cost.”

Malak Ahmad al-Za’im:

“I am Malak Ahmad al-Za’im. We were living in this tower. When the Israelis decided to bomb it, they called the neighbors, then the neighbors called my dad and we hurried very, very fast. But there was no time to gather any of our belongings. I had so many toys in my house, but also so many memories as my brothers and I were always playing on the stairs. There was a very nice restaurant here that we often ate. Also, many lawyers worked here and there was a place where you can get your eyes fixed. Many many things and many people. But more importantly, all of our dreams, hopes and memories were in this tower. 

“When the tower was destroyed, I cried a lot. I don’t know what else to say aside from that, that I cried all the time.”

(All Photos: Mahmoud Ajjour)

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Gaza ceasefire between Hamas and Israel begins after 11 days of deadly air strikes

 Officials from both sides have confirmed the truce, which came into effect at 2am, local time

An Israeli air strike hits Gaza just hours before the ceasefire was announced on 20 May (Reuters/Mohammed Salem)

By MEE staff

Published date: 20 May 2021 20:01 UTC | Last update: 10 mins 28 secs ago

A ceasefire between Israel and Hamas aimed at ending eleven days of intense bombing on the besieged Gaza Strip appeared to be holding early on Friday, despite cross-border attacks in the hours leading up to the truce.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said in a statement on Thursday that it had accepted Egypt’s proposal for a “mutual” ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, after several days of mounting international pressure. 

The ceasefire, if it holds, would end the heaviest Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip since its 2014 offensive. 

Palestinians in Gaza and the occupied territories took to the streets to celebrate at 2 am local time, (23:00 GMT Thursday), when the ceasefire came into effect.

Celebratory gunfire and fireworks could be heard while mosques used their loudspeakers to broadcast celebratory chants as the war-torn enclave hailed the apparent end to some of the worst violence in a decade.

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The ceasefire comes amid heightened pressure from the US and the European Union. 

In remarks delivered on Thursday evening, US President Joe Biden Biden commended both Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and Netanyahu for the truce, while reiterating that the US “fully supports Israel’s right to defend itself against indiscriminate rocket attacks from Hamas and other Gaza based terrorist groups”.

“These hostilities have resulted in the tragic deaths of so many civilians, including children, and I send my sincere condolences to all the families, Israeli and Palestinian, who have lost loved ones,” Biden said.

Biden added that the US was committed to providing humanitarian assistance and support for reconstruction efforts in Gaza, but would only work with the Palestinian Authority, not Hamas.Live: Hamas and Israel agree to Gaza ceasefire after intense violence

Read More »

Despite efforts to broker a ceasefire, both parties continued exchanging blows late on Thursday – with Israeli strikes causing significant damage in the besieged Gaza Strip.

More than two million Palestinians are packed into Gaza, an area the size of the US city of Detroit. Under blockade by Israel since 2006, the area has been described as “the world’s largest open-air prison”.

Earlier, the White House said that it believed Israel would agree to a ceasefire because it had “achieved significant military objectives that they laid out to achieve, in relation to protecting their people and to responding to the thousands of rocket attacks from Hamas”.

“So that’s why in part that we feel they’re in a position to start winding their operation down,” said White House press secretary Jen Psaki during a regular briefing earlier in the day.

Sheikh Jarrah and al-Aqsa Mosque

Hamas began shooting rockets at Israel on the night between 9 and 10 May. The initial attacks, which caused no deaths or damage, were in response to Israel’s invasion of the al-Aqsa Mosque and its attempts to forcibly evict Palestinian families in East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood.

Tensions were already high as Israel had put severe limitations on Palestinians’ right to enter and pray at al-Aqsa Mosque during the holy month of Ramadan. Around the same time, Israel’s Supreme Court had ordered 40 Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah, including 10 children, out of their homes, which were set to be taken over by Israeli settlers. 

Protests erupted in Sheikh Jarrah over the decision, and within days, solidarity demonstrations spread across the rest of occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, as well as Gaza. 

Israeli forces attacked a large solidarity protest at al-Aqsa Mosque that had followed a massive day of prayers, shooting tear gas and rubber-coated metal bullets into and around the mosque, which is considered the third holiest site in Islam.

Outrage quickly spread across Palestinian communities, and the Hamas movement gave Israel an ultimatum, demanding it withdraw its forces from al-Aqsa Mosque and halt its plans to force Palestinian families out of Sheikh Jarrah.

When Israel did not respond, Hamas shot its first missile. The next day, Israel responded with sophisticated air strikes and began taking out high rise buildings. Throughout its bombing campaign, a high level of civilian casualties, particularly children, have been documented. 

While there were reports that the ceasefire had been conditional on Israel meeting Hamas’ original demands, Israeli journalist Barak Ravid has reported that no such conditions were agreed upon. 

“The agreement is unconditional. There are no understandings or commitments regarding the al-Aqsa mosque or Sheikh Jarrah as part of the agreement. Those claims are totally false,” a senior Israeli official told Ravid.

Jerusalem to see ‘disguised calm’

Despite the ceasefire announcement, Palestinians in the occupied territories said they remained sceptical that tensions would ease in Jerusalem, particularly with residents of Sheikh Jarrah still at risk of imminent eviction. 

Hamza Qattina, a lawyer from Jerusalem, said the ceasefire brought about a “disguised and temporary calm” in the disputed city. 

“This mask will disappear shortly after the end of the war and the occupation will return to its violations,” he told Middle East Eye.

‘This mask will disappear shortly after the end of the war and the occupation will return to its violations’

– Hamza Qattina, lawyer 

He added that Israeli courts had not annulled the decision to evict Palestinian residents from their homes.

“Instead, occupation forces have set up barricades around Sheikh Jarrah and besieged its people even more. They are trying to expel the families making the least noise possible,” he added.

Qattina said that he expected Israel to de-escalate tensions in Jerusalem for a few weeks, “so that everyone thinks they are not the ones causing tensions.”

‘New equation’

Hatem Abdel-Qader, a member of the Fatah Revolutionary Council and Council of Islamic Endowments, said that recent developments in Gaza created a new awareness regarding the Palestinian struggle and the dire situation Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem will remain the compass and heart of events regardless of whether the aggression on the Gaza Strip ends or continues,” he told MEE.

“The battle in Jerusalem is still ongoing and will continue until Israel ends the occupation. For Israel, Jerusalem is at the forefront of its attack on Palestinian national aspiration and it’s undergoing a fierce open war against all components of the city,” he told MEE.

‘Jerusalem will not calm down as long as Sheikh Jarrah is being targeted’

– Hatem Abdel-Qader, Fatah Revolutionary Council

“Therefore, the noble Aqsa Mosque will remain the hottest flashpoints and the other point will be Sheikh Jarrah. These won’t calm down as long as Israeli measures continue.

“I believe Jerusalem before the 28th of Ramadan is different from Jerusalem after this date,” Abdel-Qader said. 

“There is a new awakening and a new equation established by the people of Jerusalem which is based on meeting Israeli oppression and aggression with steadfastness and resistance.”

This new equation, according to Abdel-Qader, is what compelled Israel to postpone, even if temporarily, the eviction notice for the residents of Sheikh Jarrah. He pointed out that Israel has realised the expulsions would constitute a “red line” for the residents of Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem will not calm down as long as Sheikh Jarrah is being targeted and there are attempts to evict Palestinians.”

Palestinian struggle bolstered

Meanwhile, researcher and political analyst Khalil Shaheen believes that the current moment across occupied Palestinian territories will strengthen the longstanding tradition of resistance in the Palestinian struggle against Israel. 

Speaking to MEE, Shaheen said the struggle against the occupation has been taking a new turn since 2014, after the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip and the popular uprising that coincided with it in the West Bank. Then there was the Jerusalem popular uprising in 2017 against the installation of electronic gates by Israeli authorities on gates of al-Aqsa Mosque.Heavy Israeli crackdown on Palestinians in West Bank marking Nakba anniversaryRead More »

On the current wave of demonstrations, Shaheen said the West Bank is witnessing a new phase. The researcher said the wave has mostly been dominated by youth and popular initiatives that appear to be largely unorganised but are still able to accumulate efforts and make an impact. 

Despite Shaheen’s optimism that the popular sentiment of resistance in the West Bank will continue, he fears the Palestinian Authority’s repressive policies will likely lead to more oppression and persecution. 

“There is a big gap between the aspirations of the Palestinian street and the aspirations of the Palestinian Authority,” Shaheen said. 

Shaheen said Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is eager for the fighting in Gaza to end so that he can focus efforts on going back to negotiations with Israel and reviving the peace process. 

“There is a gap between the PA on one hand, which wants to recreate the same old policies, and a Palestinian youth on the other hand who want to forge a new path for themselves,” Shaheen said. 

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UN: “Israeli” Aggression Leaves 52,000 Displaced in Gaza

19/5/2021

UN: “Israeli” Aggression Leaves 52,000 Displaced in Gaza 

By Staff, Agencies 

The United Nations [UN]’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs [OCHA] confirmed that the “Israeli” entity’s ongoing aggression on the besieged Gaza Strip has left more than 52,000 Palestinians displaced and nearly 450 buildings destroyed or badly damaged in the coastal enclave.

Jens Laerke, a spokesman for the UN humanitarian agency in Geneva, told reporters on Tuesday that “Israeli” strikes had forced more than 52,000 Palestinians to abandon their homes in Gaza, with 47,000 of the displaced people seeking shelter in 58 UN-run schools in the besieged area.

He further stated that “132 buildings had been destroyed and 316 had been severely damaged, including six hospitals and nine primary healthcare centers as well as a desalination plant, affecting access to drinking water for about 250,000 people.”

The OCHA spokesman underlined that the UN agency and its humanitarian partners were trying to provide food and other assistance to displaced families in Gaza, while calling on the “Israeli” entity to open a border crossing for humanitarian supplies to the besieged coastal enclave.

The World Health Organization has already raised the alarm about a severe shortage of medical supplies, a risk of water-borne diseases, and the spread of COVID-19 among the displaced people in the Gaza Strip.

Moreover, Amnesty International said in a statement on Tuesday that “Israeli” forces had displayed a shocking disregard for the lives of Palestinian civilians by targeting residential buildings in air raids, which it said might amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity.

The London-based organization also called on the International Criminal Court [ICC] to urgently investigate the “Israeli” attacks in the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, a human rights group pointed to the worsening humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip as the ongoing ‘Israeli’ aggression reached its eighth day, warning that basic service sectors might collapse if the attacks continued.

“The intense bombings carried out by ‘Israeli’ forces have caused the destruction of hundreds of homes and service facilities and greatly affected electricity, water and sanitation services in many areas of Gaza,” the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor said in a statement. “This threatens the city and its citizens with serious health and environmental repercussions.”

The rights group warned that stopping power plants and disrupting supply lines would exacerbate the current crisis, and would have a serious impact on the basic services in the Gaza Strip.

The statement went on to say that, “Many of Gaza’s neighborhoods have been suffering interruptions to their water supply for days, especially since the bombings destroyed many water and sewage lines.”

The monitor stressed that “Israel’s” unabated bombing had caused almost “complete disruption of life and production” in the coastal enclave and seriously affected vulnerable groups who depend on daily paid jobs.

“The ‘Israeli’ military attack on Gaza must immediately end since it violates international humanitarian law,” the statement said.

Over the past week, the Tel Aviv regime has been launching large-scale airstrikes across Gaza, razing homes and civilian infrastructure to the ground. “Israeli” artillery and tanks have also been targeting the blockaded coastal enclave.

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Palestine’s ‘Day of Anger’: From River to the Sea

17/5/21

Palestine’s ‘Day of Anger’: From River to the Sea

By Staff, Agencies 

Palestinians staged a nationwide general strike across the occupied West Bank and towns occupied in 1948 lands to protest the ongoing “Israeli” aggression on the Gaza Strip.

Shops, business centers, civil institutions, banks, and universities shut their doors across the West Bank.
The general strike was called by Palestinian parties and unions as a “day of anger” over “Israel’s” military aggression in Gaza and Al-Quds.

“The strike is an expression of anger against this barbaric aggression by the ‘Israeli’ occupation and international silence toward [‘Israeli’] aggression against our people in Al-Quds, Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and Gaza,” Fahmi Shaheen, the coordinator of the national and Islamic forces in Al-Khalil said.

He further stated: “This strike acquires a special importance because it is joined by all the Palestinian people across historic Palestine.”

Meanwhile, shops and private institutions in Arab towns in 1948 occupied lands closed down as part of the general strike.

On Sunday, activists called on Palestinians to join the strike in protest of the ongoing “Israeli” attacks against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and West Bank.

“Israel’s” Unlimited Barbarism: Gaza’s Main Lab Damaged in Zionist Strikes

“Israel’s” Unlimited Barbarism: Gaza’s Main Lab Damaged in Zionist Strikes

By Staff, Agencies 

Again it’s “Israel’s” brutality that governs the scene. 

As part of the continuous “Israeli” barbarism in Gaza, the besieged strip’s Covid-19 testing and vaccination site was taken offline after it was struck in an “Israeli” air raid.

This comes as Palestinian health officials warned that Tel Aviv’s bombing campaign will drive a surge in the pandemic.

The strikes triggered a “complete halt” to immunizations, virus screenings and telemedicine services at Gaza’s Al-Rimal clinic on Monday, the territory’s Health Ministry said on Monday, noting that its own headquarters was also damaged in the bombing. 

“The ‘Israeli’ occupation’s targeting of the Ministry of Health and Al-Rimal Clinic caused a complete halt to the work of the only central laboratory examining coronavirus tests in [Gaza],” Health Ministry Undersecretary Youssef Abu al-Rish said in a statement, condemning the airstrikes as “a heinous crime aimed at dissuading the ministry from continuing its humanitarian work.”

In a separate statement, the ministry said that “Israeli” forces were targeting “densely populated residential areas,” sending some 40,000 families to crowded shelters, which have become “a dangerous environment for the rapid spread of Covid-19.” It urged the international community to provide “critically needed personal protection equipment” for the shelters.

The official announcement followed similar reports from both the Palestine Liberation Organization [PLO], as well as the territory’s UN mission, which relayed a warning from UN chief Antonio Guterres that the fighting could “unleash an uncontainable security and humanitarian crisis” in Gaza.

The UN’s Gaza relief agency, the UNRWA, has also voiced fears that the eruption of violence could fuel a surge in the pandemic, with agency official Matthias Schmale observing that “Israeli” airstrikes were sending large numbers of unvaccinated Palestinians into cramped shelters, saying they “could turn into mass spreaders.”

With Gaza under a tight Israeli blockade, health agencies have found themselves ill-equipped for the ongoing health crisis, seeing major shortages in tests, treatments and vaccines. The latest aggression has only made matters worse, overwhelming Gaza’s hospitals with dead and wounded, and even martyring some healthcare professionals.

Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestine ( 6 – 10 May 2021)

Serious Escalation in Gaza Strip: 26 Palestinians Killed, including 9 Children and Woman and her Child with Disability, and 75 Others Injured, including 22 Children and 7 Women

Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestine

IOF military escalation on Gaza Strip: 21 Palestinians killed, including 9 children; 68 wounded, including 22 children and 7 women

  • 969 Palestinians wounded in IOF attacks on Palestinians in East Jerusalem and worshipers at al-Aqsa Mosque, including 17 journalists, 9 in critical conditions and 3 lost their eyes
  • IOF excessive use of force in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem: 14 Palestinians wounded, including a girl
  • Six IOF shootings reported at agricultural areas (east) and three others on fishing boats in the Gaza sea
  • In 122 IOF incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem: 115 civilians arrested, including 2 children
  • Construction vehicle confiscated in Hebron and an agricultural caravan in Nablus
  • Settler-attacks: attacks on civilians and their vehicles, lands set on fire in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem
  • Israeli occupation authorities close Beit Hanoun and Karm Abu Salem crossings and the Gaza Sea
  • IOF established 39 temporary military checkpoints in the West Bank and arrested 6 Palestinian civilians on said checkpoints

Summary   

Israeli occupation forces (IOF) continued to commit crimes and multi-layered violations against Palestinian civilians and their properties, including raids into Palestinian cities that are characterized with excessive use of force. This week, the occupation continued its attacks in East Jerusalem, violating the sanctity of the al-Aqsa Mosque and conducted large oppressive campaigns across the city, with the participation of Israeli settlers. These attacks rendered hundreds of injuries amongst Palestinian civilians. As the situation escalated in the occupied East Jerusalem, Gaza armed groups launched missiles at Israeli settlements and towns and the Israeli occupation responded with multiple airstrikes across the Gaza Strip announcing the launch of a military operation, “Operation Guardian of the Walls,” against the territory. The Israeli occupation’s attacks on the Gaza Strip continue as of writing this report, causing extensive casualties. Additionally, the Israeli occupation authorities closed both Beit Hanoun and Karm Abu Salem crossings, as well as the Gaza Sea under its systemic policy of collective punishment.

IOF also continued its raids, arrests, and attacks on civilians that are mostly conducted after midnight and in the early morning hours, purposefully terrorizing protected civilians. This week also IOF confiscated Palestinians’ properties and agricultural equipment, and safeguarded settlers’ attacks on Palestinians.

Note: The 19th edition of PCHR’s Weekly Report of Israeli Violations in the oPt is issued early this week for the Eid al-Fitr Holidays. We wish you all peace and prosperity on the occasion of this holy Eid.

IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity:

In the Gaza Strip, 21 Palestinians, including 9 children -1 of them died along with his father, were killed and 68 others sustained wounds, including 22 children and 7 women after wide-scale Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip. Also, one Palestinian civilian was wounded, and 6 IOF shootings were reported on agricultural lands eastern Gaza, and 3 shootings at fishing boats, western Gaza.

In the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, 983 Palestinians sustained wounds in IOF excessive use of force against civilians.  Among the wounded, 969, including 17 journalists, and 9 in critical condition, sustained their wounds in Israeli attacks on civilians and worshipers at al-Aqsa Mosque and in East Jerusalem. Fourteen others sustained wounds due to IOF excessive use of force and dozens suffocated due to tear gas inhalation, and others were wounded in various IOF assaults across the West Bank.

IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians: 

IOF carried out 122 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, enticing fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 115 Palestinians were arrested, including 2 children. Of the 115 arrestees, 63 were taken during the clashes and IOF attacks on Palestinian civilians and worshipers at al-Aqsa Mosque, Bab al-Amoud, and Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.

Demolitions:

PCHR fieldworkers documented two violations: excavator confiscated in Kherbet Khelet al-Dabe’a, east of Yatta, south of Hebron and an agricultural caravan in Nablus.

Settler-attacks: PCHR fieldworkers reported and documented 7 attacks:

Ramallah: assault on a vehicle and agricultural fields set on fire

Nablus: assault on a vehicle and Palestinian civilians, and agricultural fields were set on fire

Hebron: assault on a civilian and a shepherd with stones

East Jerusalem: along with the wide-scale attacks in the City, settlers assaulted civilians in Issaweya

Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:

On Monday, 10 May 2021, the Israeli authorities closed Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing one after complete closure of the sea within the collective punishment policy against the Palestinian civilians in Gaza.

According to PCHR’s follow-up, the Israeli authorities declared Monday morning the closure of Beit Hanoun crossing, and only humanitarian cases are allowed, which was confirmed by PCHR.  IOF also declared on Monday, 09 May 2021, withdrawing the decision of allowing the businessmen to travel via the crossing after the Palestinian Civil Affairs Ministry announced on Thursday afternoon, 06 May 2021, that the Israeli authorities informed them of allowing again their travel via the crossing after they have been denied since the outbreak of coronavirus in the Gaza Strip.

On Monday evening, the Israeli authorities closed Karm Abu Salem Crossing, the sole commercial crossing in the Gaza Strip, until further notice.

These decisions are part of the comprehensive closure and illegal and inhuman collective punishment policy imposed by IOF on the Gaza Strip, and shall carry negative implication on the already restricted number of groups who are allowed travel via Beit Hanoun crossing.

The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the history of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life. The United Nations confirmed that the Gaza conditions are worsening, with deteriorating health, power, and water services. The UN emphasized that the Gaza Strip requires immense efforts in the housing and education sectors and to create job opportunities.

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

Shooting and other Violations of the Right to Life and Bodily Integrity

IOF Attacks in occupied East Jerusalem:

On Thursday, 06 May 2021, 22 Palestinians were wounded; 6 of them with rubber bullets when IOF suppressed a peaceful protest organized to sand in solidarity with Sheikh Jarrah’s residents, whose houses are threatened to be evicted in favor of Israeli settlers. IOF also arrested 15 Palestinians, taking them to a police station. According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 19:30, dozens of Palestinians from occupied East Jerusalem and Arabs holding Israeli ID cards organized breakfast (Iftar) for Sheikh Jarrah’s residents whose houses are under the threat of eviction. While the Palestinians were eating their Iftar, an Israeli settler living in al-Ghawi’s house, which was seized, assaulted the Palestinians and pepper-sprayed them. As a result, the Palestinians threw chairs and water bottles at the settlers and damaged their tent, which was established in front of al-Ghawi family’s house, which was seized by Israeli settlers in 2009, to receive a member of the Knesset, Itamar Bin Ghafir, who moved his office to the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in front of houses that are under the threat of eviction to support the settlers and provoke Palestinians present in the neighborhood. After that, a fighting erupted between the settlers, guarded by IOF, Sheikh Jarrah’s residents and other Palestinians who stand in solidarity with Sheikh Jarrah, during which, they threw chairs at each other and settlers along with IOF fired live bullets to disperse the peaceful protestors.

At approximately 20:30, despite the closure of Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood’s entrances and ban on vehicles’ entry into the neighborhood by IOF, Palestinians who stand in solidarity with the neighborhood residents continued to flock to the streets. When hundreds of Palestinians gathered in the center of Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and chanted slogans, IOF assaulted them, heavily sprayed skunk water at them, beat them up, pushed and dragged them on the ground, and chased them around the neighborhood streets in an attempt to vacate the area. IOF also fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at the Palestinians. As a result, 22 Palestinians were wounded; 6 with rubber bullets, 3 sustained teargas canisters shrapnel wounds, 4 sustained bruises throughout their bodies, 8 suffocated due to teargas inhalation, and others were pepper-sprayed in the face. The clashes continued until dawn, during which settlers indiscriminately fired live bullets after an Israeli vehicle was set ablaze. IOF also raided al-Kurd and Diyab houses, beat up the residents, and pepper-sprayed them.

Additionally, 15 Palestinians were arrested and beaten. PCHR keeps the names of the arrestees. It should be noted that al-Ja’ouni, al-Kurd, al-Qsem, and Iskafi families headed to the Israeli Supreme Court, which set a new session on Monday, 10 May, to consider a petition submitted by the mentioned families on eviction orders. It is worth noting that 28 Palestinian families comprised of 87 persons, including women and children, are threatened to be expelled from their houses in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood; 4 families on 10 May 2021 and 3 other families will face a similar fate on 01 August 2021.

On Friday, 205 Palestinians, including 5 journalists, were wounded; 2 were deemed serious and 3 others lost their eyes during mass suppression by the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) against tens of thousands of Palestinian worshipers in al-Aqsa Mosque and its yards, in Bab al-‘Amoud area and in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem. IOF raided al-Aqsa Mosque, violated its sanctity, deprived Palestinian worshipers of performing prayers, assaulted dozens of them, dragged them on the ground, and arrested 17 of them.

According to investigations conducted by the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), on Friday, 07 May 2021, while tens of thousands of Palestinian worshipers were heading to al-Aqsa Mosque to perform the last Friday prayer in Ramadan, thousands of Israeli soldiers flocked into occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, stationed on its streets and at al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates, established dozens of military checkpoints, and closed the city entrances. Before Maghrib prayer, IOF tightened their measures around al-Aqsa Mosque; closed al-Wad Road, which leads to al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates from the western side (the gate: Bab al-Majlis, Bab al Hadid, Bab al Qattanin and Bab al Silsilah); denied worshipers’ access to the mosque, fired sound bombs at them; pointed their guns at them to scare them and force them to leave. As a result, the worshipers tried to find alternative roads to enter the mosque from its northern gates, causing a traffic jam in the Old City. Before ‘Isha and Tarawih prayers, verbal altercation erupted between one of the worshipers and Israeli police officers stationed at Bab al Silsilah. After that, IOF suddenly raided al-Aqsa Mosque via Bab al Silsilah and fired heavy sound bombs and rubber bullets at the worshipers present in the mosque’s western yards, which caused clashes continued between IOF and worshipers in the mosque’s yards for 4 hours. During the clashes, IOF cut the wires of Bab al Magharibah Minaret, cut off the electricity in al-Aqsa Mosque’s facilities, topped and raided al- Qibli Mosque, fired sound bombs at the worshipers, detained them inside the mosque, and closed its doors with iron chains. In Bab al-Rahma Mosque, IOF fired sound bombs and rubber bullets at the worshipers while performing prayers. They also fired sound bombs at the Dome of the Rock gates, which designated for women entry. Additionally, IOF stormed and targeted al-Aqsa Mosque’s clinic, fired sound bombs inside it, damaged its contents, assaulted medical crews and injuries present there. After that, IOF used excessive force to evacuate and disperse tens of thousands of worshipers from al-Aqsa Mosque, its facilities, and yards, and indiscriminately fired heavy rubber bullets and sound bombs at them. As a result, dozens of worshipers were shot with rubber bullets in their upper limbs, including 5 journalists who were wounded while covering incidents in al-Aqsa Mosque.

The wounded journalists were identified as Fayiz Abu Irmilah, ‘Atta ‘Ewisat, ‘Abed al-‘Afou Bassam, Mohammed Abu Suninah, and Mohammed Samreen. Journalist ‘Ewisat said to PCHR’s fieldworker that a police officer fired 3 rubber bullets at him from a distance of 0.5 meter and damaged his cellphone. He added that despite all bullets fired at him, he remained standing. After that, seven police officers approached him and beat him up throughout his body, so he fell to the ground.

When the worshippers were forcefully removed from al-Aqsa Mosque to the Old City’s neighborhoods and its surrounding, clashes broke out between dozens of Palestinian young men and IOF in Bab Huta, Bab al-‘Amoud and al-Saherah neighborhoods.  IOF closed the two gates with iron barriers and denied citizens’ access via which.  During the clashes, IOF arrested many young men and wounded others. 

Meanwhile in al-Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, IOF and settlers’ attacks continued against its residents and those in solidarity for the second consecutive week.  Since Friday early morning, IOF heavily deployed in the neighborhood, closed its entrances, and prevented persons in solidarity from reaching the houses under the threat of eviction.  In a serious development, IOF allowed more than 200 armed settlers to enter the neighborhood.  Following the Friday Prayer, tens of Palestinians and internationals gathered in solidarity at the neighborhood’s entrance, chanted national slogans condemning the occupation. Those in solidarity stayed at al-Sheikh entrances until al-Maghreb Prayer, away from the neighborhood’s families, who organized an Iftar in front of their houses, amid heavy deployment of IOF which prevented the persons standing in solidarity from joining the families and had their Iftars on pavements.  After they finished, they chanted national slogans condemning settlers’ attacks.  IOF immediately beat them, pumped wastewater at them and fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at them.  As a result, many injuries and arrests were reported.

Due to IOF’s wide-scale suppression in Jerusalem, 205 Palestinians were injured in al-Aqsa Mosque, al-Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and Bab al-‘Amoud; 88 injuries were referred to Jerusalem’s hospitals, 20 were referred to the field hospitals and the rest were treated on the spot as stated by PRCS.

PRCS said that most injuries were with rubber bullets in the chest and face.  As a result, 3 persons lost their eyes and were transported to ST John Eye hospital in al-Sheikh Jarrah, Makassed Hospital and Hadassah Medical Center.  The medical staff at al-Makassed Hospital in At-Tur neighborhood, east of Jerusalem’s Old City, said that they treated 83 injuries with rubber bullets: 3 were in the eye, including one lost his eye, 2 were serious injuries in the head, 2 were jaw fractures and the rest were minor injuries. 

In addition to their attacks on the medical staff who were on duty, IOF prevented 2 PRCS ambulance crews from Bethlehem and Ramallah from providing help in aid and treatment due to the increasing number of injuries.  The crews arrived at Qalendia and Tunnel checkpoints to enter Jerusalem, but they were denied, in violation of the international humanitarian law principles, which emphasizes respect for the PRCS badge and protection and facilitation of their medical duties.

During the intense attacks on citizens and worshippers and pulling down some of them, IOF arrested 17 citizens in al-Aqsa Mosque, Bab al-‘Amoud and al-Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and took them to the police station in the occupied city.

On Saturday, 90 Palestinians were wounded, and 16 others were arrested when IOF violently suppressed dozens of Palestinian young men in the Old City and in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem. According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 16:00, thousands of Israeli soldiers flocked to occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, stationed on its streets and at its gates, closed main streets leading to the Old City, established dozens of military checkpoints on the main streets leading to Jerusalem, and prevented dozens of buses carrying thousands of Palestinian worshipers holding Israeli IDs from entering the city. As a result, the worshipers were forced to walk several kilometers in order to reach Jerusalemite people’s vehicles, which will drive them to al-Aqsa Mosque. Also, IOF stationed in al-Tur neighborhood, east of the Old City, prevented trucks holding Iftar meals prepared by the Islamic Endowment Department (Awqaf) for Palestinians from reaching the mosque. Before Maghrib prayer, thousands of Palestinian worshipers flocked to al-Aqsa Mosque via Bab al Asbat, Bab al-Malik Faisal and Bab al Hittah. Suddenly, IOF fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at the worshipers and severely beat and dragged Naser Ghaith and their two sons Laith and Mohammed. IOF arrested Laith (27) and took them to the hospital as he sustained wounds and bruises throughout his body. When the worshipers ate their Iftar meal, they gathered in al-Qibli Mosque’s yard and chanted national and religious slogans. Following al-Tarawih prayer, thousands of worshipers got out of al-Aqsa Mosque via Bab al-‘Amoud, Bab al-Sahera and Bab al-Asbat. During which, IOF assaulted them, fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at them, and pumped skunk water on the area and around the Old City. As a result, violent clashes erupted and continued for next day dawn. During these clashes, 90 Palestinians, including 6 children, were wounded; 90 of them received treatment at al-Maqased Hospital, according to the PRCS’s crew. Also, a paramedic was wounded, and a woman was directly shot with a rubber bullet in her face. According to PRCS, most of injuries were with rubber bullets, sound bombs and beating.

In Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, IOF and settlers’ attacks continued against the neighborhood’s residents and other persons who stand in solidarity with them. The neighborhood’s residents along with dozens of Palestinians who stand in solidarity with them organized a breakfast (Iftar) in front of their houses, which are under the threat of eviction. Following the Iftar, the Palestinian organized a sit-in, chanted national slogans, and performed al-Tarawih prayer. During which, IOF beat them up, pumped skunk water at them and fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at them. Also, IOF severely beat Nour Hammad and Maryam al-‘Afifi and dragged them on the ground before arresting them. Additionally, 4 other Palestinians, from Umm al-Fahm city, were arrested.

It should be noted that during clashes erupted near the Old City and in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, IOF arrested 16 Palestinians, beat them up, dragged them on the ground, and took them to police stations. PCHR holds record of the names of the arrestees.

Following Fajr prayer, on Sunday, 09 May 2021, thousands of Palestinian worshipers, who were performing al-I’tikaf (a period of staying in a mosque for a certain number of days to perform prayers) got out of al-Aqsa Mosque raising Palestinian flags. In the meantime, IOF raided al-Aqsa Mosque via Bab al Hittah and Bab al Magharibah. Also, Israeli snipers topped the mosque’s roofs from the western side and fired heavy rubber bullets and sound bombs at the worshipers while getting out of the mosque. After that, violent clashes erupted between the worshipers and IOF near Bab al Hittah and Bab al Asbat from the northern side and near Bab al Silsilah and Bab al Magharibah from the western side. During which, IOF fired heavy rubber bullets at the Palestinians. As a result, 21 Palestinians were wounded; 8 received treatment at the hospital while the rest on the spot, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS). IOF also closed Bab al Asbat and prevented anyone from entering or exiting, which hindered medical crew’s work, who were providing first aid for worshipers injured inside the mosque.

At approximately 18:00 on Sunday, 09 May 2021, IOF closed Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and prevented anyone from entering it. Also, Palestinians who stand in solidarity with Sheikh Jarrah residents were denied access to the neighborhood, while hundreds of armed settlers were allowed to enter the neighborhood, establish a tent, open loudspeakers and dance to provoke Palestinians. Following al-Maghrib prayer, hundreds of Palestinians gathered on the neighborhood’s main street, chanted slogans and sang. IOF immediately suppressed them, fired rubber bullets and sound bombs at them, and pumped skunk water at them. Also, police on horseback chased the Palestinians. As a result, clashes erupted and continued for several hours. During which, Israeli settlers, guarded by IOF, opened fire at the Palestinians and threw stones at them.

It should be noted that other clashes erupted between Palestinian young men and IOF in al-Tur and Shuafat neighborhoods and in Silwan village against the ongoing IOF’s attacks in al-Aqsa Mosque and Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.

PRCS crews stated that they treated 19 Palestinians during clashes erupted with IOF in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and Bab al-‘Amoud area; 5 of them were taken to the hospital for treatment. Also, the PRCS crew said that a paramedic was shot with a rubber bullet during clashes in al-Tur neighborhood, and an ambulance was shot with rubber bullet and hit with sound bombs in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.

At approximately 22:30, Palestinian worshipers performed Isha and Tarawih prayers and got out of al-Aqsa Mosque. During which, IOF fired rubber bullets and sound bombs in Bab al-‘Amoud area in the center of occupied East Jerusalem, to vacate the area. They also chased and beat dozens of Palestinian young men and shops’ owners. As a result, several young men were wounded, and 3 others were arrested. Also, the shops owners said that their shops and goods sustained damage due to pumping skunk water at their shops.

On Monday, 10 May 2021, IOF violated al-Aqsa Mosque and its facilities, suppressed, and assaulted Palestinian worshipers and fired sound bombs and rubber bullets inside the Mosque and in its yards. As a result, 305 Palestinians, including 8 journalists, were wounded- 7 were deemed in critical condition. This serious escalation came only a few hours before a planned demonstration by thousands of Israeli settlers in Bab al-‘Amoud area and near al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates.

According to investigations conducted by the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), following Fajr prayer, on Monday, 10 May 2021, thousands of Palestinian worshipers gathered in al-Aqsa Mosque’s yards and facilities in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to counter Israeli settlers, who called for a packed demonstration to commemorate the anniversary of Israel’s occupation of Jerusalem in 1967, according to the Hebrew calendar. At approximately 08:19, Chief of Israel Police ordered a large force to raid al-Aqsa Mosque in an attempt to facilitate the entry of Israeli settlers, who were gathering in Bab al Magharibah, into the Mosque. Afterwards, IOF moved into al-Aqsa Mosque’s yards and its facilities via Bab al Magharibah and Bab al Silsilah amid heavy firing of rubber bullets, teargas canisters and sound bombs for 4 consecutive hours.

During that time, Israeli snipers topped al-Aqsa Mosque’s western roofs, in addition to al-Qibli Mosque’s roof, and then raided the Mosque, assaulted Palestinian worshipers, and fired rubber bullets, teargas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, dozens of Palestinians, old and young, men and women, who were detained inside the Mosque sustained wounds. Also, IOF prevented medical and paramedics crew from providing first aid for the wounded. Moreover, IOF assaulted and severely beat worshipers present in the Old, El-Marwani, Bab al-Rahma and Dome of the Rock Mosques, fired stun grenades and rubber bullets at them and surrounded them inside these mosques. Additionally, IOF raided the Islamic Endowment (Awqaf) offices and expelled its employees, in addition to the fire station office, and welded the medical clinic doors shut to impede the provision of treatment for the wounded civilians.

All of the al-Aqsa Mosque Gates, particularly Bab Huta, Bab al Asbat and Bab al Silsilah, witnessed violent clashes after Israeli forces were reinforced with backups as the clashes at al-Aqsa Mosque intensified. At Bab al Asbat, IOF assaulted paramedics while the Palestinian Red Crescent Society’s crews were transporting the injured, wounding several of them with rubber bullets and banned others entry into the Mosque to transport the wounded to the ambulances and hospitals. In the midst of the violent clashes inside the Mosque, an armed Israeli settler ran-over Palestinian civilians with his vehicle on the outskirts of Bab al Asbat, injuring several ones; then stepped out of the vehicle and started shooting at them while protected by an Israeli police officer who kept away angered Palestinian youth.

During the Israeli violent escalation, which al-Aqsa Mosque has not witnessed for more than 20 years, 8 journalists were wounded while covering the incidents at the mosque; most with rubber bullets, and were identified as: Maisaa’ Abu Ghazaleh, Mohammed Abu Sneineh, Lewaa’ Rmeileh, Mohammed Jaradat, Eithar Abu Gharbiyeh, Fatmah al-Bakri, Rami al-Khatib, and Osayd ‘Amarneh.

At approximately 16:00, despite the Israeli authorities’ decision to move the planned demonstration by thousands of Israeli settlers from Bab al-‘Amoud area, Salah al-Deen and al-Wad Streets and al-Islami neighborhood to Bab al-Khalil area, IOF assaulted and severely beat dozens of Palestinians gathered in Bab al-‘Amoud area, fired heavy stun grenades at them and arrested 4 of them.

In al-Aqsa Mosque, following Isha prayer, clashes renewed in the mosque’s yards and in its facilities, as a large number of Israeli soldiers raided the mosque amid firing rubber bullets and stun grenades. As a result, al-Marwani and al-Qibli Mosques sustained material damage and dozens of Palestinian worshipers detained inside the mosques sustained wounds, noting that medical crew were prevented from providing first aid to the wounded civilians.

Moreover, the Dome of the Rock Mosque witnessed violent clashes after Palestinian young men set an Israeli police station ablaze. The clashes continued for several hours, during which, dozens of Palestinians, including 4 journalists, were wounded. The journalists were identified as: Turkish journalist Turgut Alp Boyzar, Baraa Shaludi, Muhammad Sharif, and Ayman Qawarik. It should be noted that IOF closed all al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates, hindered paramedics’ entry to the Mosque and wounded them with rubber bullets.

In Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, hundreds of Israeli soldiers flocked to the neighborhood to secure and protect Israeli settlers. Following al-Maghrib prayer, IOF prevented Palestinians who stand in solidarity with Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood from entering it and participating in the sit-in. The Palestinians gathered and protested at the neighborhood’s entrance. Before chanting slogans, IOF suppressed them, pumped skunk water at them, beat young and old, men and women, and fired stun grenades at them.

Ras al-Amud, al-Tur, Silwan, al-Ram, and al-Thawri neighborhoods witnessed violent clashes. During which, IOF pumped skunk water and fired rubber bullets and sound bombs to disperse the protestors who gathered in support of Jerusalem and against IOF’s attacks in al-Aqsa Mosque.

Also, Kalandia military checkpoint witnessed violent clashes erupted between hundreds of Palestinians and IOF, who fired live and rubber bullets and teargas canisters at the protestors, according to PRCS crew.

The PRCS crew said that the IOF’s attacks in al-Aqsa Mosque and the Old City, resulted in the injury of 612 Palestinians; 7 were deemed in critical condition. The PRCS added that more than 411 injuries were referred to al-Makassed and Augusta Victoria “al-Mutale’a” hospitals in at-Tur neighborhood, Saint Joseph Hospital in al-Sheikh Jarrah and PRCS’s field hospital in al-Sowannah neighborhood. PRCS added that a number of paramedics were wounded with rubber bullets while rescuing those injured at al-Aqsa Mosque. IOF also broke the windshield of an ambulance in Bab al-‘Amoud area after targeting it with stun grenades.

IOF Military Escalation on the Gaza Strip

21 Palestinians killed, including 9 children; 68 wounded, including 22 children and 7 women

Since yesterday evening, 10 May 2021, the Gaza Strip has witnessed a major military escalation that resulted in the killing of 26 Palestinians, including 9 children; one of them was killed with his father while another was with a disability and was killed along with his mother, and the injury of 75 others, including 22 children and 7 women, during wide ranging Israeli airstrikes against targets in the Gaza Strip.  The Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) declared that a wide-range military operation has begun in the Gaza Strip and has been given an official name: “Operation Guardian of the Walls” after rockets were fired, as claimed by the Palestinian armed groups in response to the Israeli violence in Jerusalem that escalated in the last 2 days when al-Aqsa Mosque was raided and hundreds of worshipers were injured.  The Israeli threats warn of a growing number of casualties among civilians and further destruction in the civilian objects.  While this report was in preparation, many Palestinians have fallen casualties to IOF attacks in Gaza; details will be included in next week’s report.

At approximately 18:10 on Monday, 10 May 2021, an Israeli drone fired a missile at an agricultural land located in al-Kashif Mount in Jabalia refugee camp, north of the Gaza Strip. As a result, Saber Ibrahim Mahmoud Suliman (38) and his son Mohammed (15), from Jabalia, were killed while they were present in the agricultural land. Both were taken to the Indonesian Hospital, where medical sources stated that they sustained shrapnel wounds throughout their bodies.

Around the same time, an Israeli drone targeted with one missile Mohammed ‘Abdullah Zidan (26) when he was in the center of al-Salah neighborhood in al-Bourah area in Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip.  As a result, he was immediately killed and taken to Beit Hanoun Governmental Hospital.

Around the same time, a missile fell on a gathering of civilians next to al-Basha Farm in al-Thahrah area at the end of al-Masriyeen Street, east of Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip.  As a result, eight were killed, including 6 children, and 18 were injured, including a woman and 10 children.  Those killed were identified as Ibrahim Yousif ‘Atallah al-Masri (11); his brother Merwan (6); Ahmed Mohammed ‘Atallah al-Masri (20); his sister Rahaf (10); Yazan Sultan al-Masri (2 years old); Hussein Munir Hussein Hamad (11); Mohammed ‘Ali Mohammed Nasir (24); and Ibrahim ‘Abdullah Mohammed Hasanein (16).  Moreover, 3 houses sustained partial damage from the southern side of the scene.

According to the field investigations and the scene inspection, the scene is around 800 meters away from the western side of the border fence with Israel.  Al-Masri Family works in collecting straws in the outskirts of al-Basha Farm next to their houses.  Children were playing at the time near their families who were collecting the straw while other members of Hamad Nasir and Hasanein families were present at the same time.

At approximately 21:30, an Israeli missile fell near al-Rahman Mosque in Zaytun neighborhood in Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip. As a result, Ibrahim Ahmed Khamis al-Shenbari (20), from Zaytun neighborhood, was killed and 13 others, including 4 women and 2 children, were wounded. All of them were taken to Beit Hanoun Hospital, where their injuries were classified between moderate and minor. Also, the mosque and nearby houses sustained partial damage.

At approximately 21:35, Israeli drone fired a missile at a plot of land in eastern Buraij refugee camp, in the center of the Gaza Strip. As a result, the land sustained material damage and no casualties were reported.

At approximately 22:15, Israeli drones fired a missile at a group of Palestinians in al-Manara neighborhood, south of Khan Yunis. As a result, 3 of them were injured and taken to Naser Hospital, where the injury of one of them namely Saleem Mohammed Saleem al-Farra (37), from Khan Yunis, was classified serious. Al-Farra was pronounced dead later.

At approximately 22:50, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a plot of land in al-Qarara village, northeast of Khan Yunis. As a result, the land sustained material damage and no casualties were reported.

At approximately 23:40, Israeli warplanes fired 4 missiles near a quarantine center in Tel al-Sultan neighborhood, west of Rafah. As a result, the center sustained material damage and no casualties were reported.

Other IOF violations of the right to life in the oPt

At approximately 06:30 on Thursday, 06 May 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and opened heavy fire around them, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.

At approximately 21:00, Israeli infantry units moved into Al-Arroub refugee camp, north of Hebron, and deployed between residential houses. Meanwhile, a group of Palestinian young men gathered on the main street near an UNRWA distribution center and threw stones at IOF, who responded with sound bombs and teargas canisters. As a result, many stone-throwers suffocated due to teargas inhalation. The clashes continued until 23:00 and IOF withdrew later; no arrests were reported.

At approximately 12:00 on Friday, 07 May 2021, following the murder of two civilians and the injury of another one in shooting incident occurred at Salem military checkpoint, which separates Jenin and Green Line, IOF closed the checkpoint and prevented press crew and ambulances from approaching the checkpoint. When journalists attempted to approach the checkpoint to cover the incident, IOF beat them up. The journalists were identified as:

‘Ali Sadeq Saleem Samoudi, a reporter at al-Quds Newspaper.

‘Alaa Tawfiq Badarnah, cameraman in the European News Agency.

Raneen Sawaftah, photographer at Reuters News Agency.

Sakher Rawatba, photographer at Palestine T.V.

Also, IOF assaulted a number of PRCS paramedics and chased them until they left the area.

Journalist ‘Ali Sadeq Saleem al-Samoudi said to PCHR’s researcher that: “Following the murder of two civilians and the injury of another one at Salem military checkpoint, IOF closed the sole checkpoint, which leads to the camp, and prevented journalists and PRCS paramedics from entering the camp. When we attempted to approach, IOF threatened to open fire at us. Despite our commitment to the soldiers’ orders, they assaulted, chased and cursed us and fired sound bombs and teargas canisters at us. As a result, journalist Raneen Sawaftah suffocated due to teargas inhalation. They also beat the two journalists Sakher Rawatba and ‘Alaa Tawfiq Badarnah. Additionally, IOF beat me up with their gun butts and violently beat my colleague ‘Alaa Badarnah while he was inside his vehicle.  IOF attacked ambulances and paramedics and forced all to leave and vacate the area, or they will be arrested.”

At approximately 13:30, a peaceful protest took off in front of Beit Dajan village council, northeast of Nablus, at the call of the villagers and with the participation of the National Action Factions in Nablus, towards lands under the threat of confiscation, east of the village. The protestors raised Palestinian flags and chanted slogans against the Israeli occupation and settlers. When the protestors arrived at the area, they found a large number of Israeli soldiers awaiting them. IOF immediately suppressed the protest and fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, a 50-year-old man was shot with a live bullet in his right foot. Also, many protestors suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot.

At approximately 12:50 on Saturday, 08 May 2021, IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip, fired live bullets and teargas canisters at Palestinian young men gathered along the fence. The IOF’s sporadic shooting continued for several hours; no casualties were reported.  At approximately 21:30, the protest renewed, during which, IOF fired rubber and live bullets and teargas canisters that reached the outskirts of Khuzaʽa village. As a result, dozens of Palestinians suffocated due to teargas inhalation.

At approximately 16:30, IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, fired heavy live bullets and teargas canisters at about 50 Palestinian young men gathered in eastern Bureij refugee camp along the border fence. The young men set fire to tires and fired incendiary balloons in response to IOF’s attacks in Jerusalem. At approximately 20:30, the young men gathered again, during which, IOF fired heavy teargas canisters at them. As a result, many of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation; 6 of them were taken to al-Aqsa Hospital for treatment.

At approximately 21:30 on Saturday, a number of Palestinian young men gathered near Huwara military checkpoint, southeast of Nablus, and organized a protest to stand in solidarity with Jerusalemite people. Clashes erupted in the area, during which, IOF fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at the protestors. As a result, many of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received a treatment on the spot.

Around the same time, a similar protest was organized to stand in solidarity with Jerusalem. The protest developed into clashes erupted at the entrance to Beita village, southeast of Nablus. During which, IOF fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at the protestors. As a result, many of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received a treatment on the spot.

Around the same time, violent clashes erupted at al-Jalma military checkpoint, north of Jenin, after organizing a protest to stand in solidarity with Jerusalem. During which, IOF fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at the protestors. As a result, many of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received a treatment on the spot.

At approximately 02:30 on Sunday, 09 May 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and opened heavy fire around them, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.

At approximately 14:20 on Sunday, 09 May 2021m IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip, fired live bullets and teargas canisters at Palestinian young men gathered along the fence. As a result, a 24-year-old male was shot with a live bullet in his right thigh and taken to Naser Hospital for treatment. The protest continued for several hours, during which, IOF fired live bullets and teargas canisters at the protestors.  As a result, dozens of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation.

At approximately 20:30, at least 80 Palestinian young men gathered in eastern Buraij refugee camp to stand in solidarity with Jerusalemite people. The protestors set fire to tires, fired incendiary balloons and threw stones at IOF stationed along the border fence. The soldiers responded with live bullets and teargas canisters; no casualties were reported.

At approximately 21:30, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, and off al-Sudaniyia Shore, west of Jabalia camp, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within varying nautical miles, opened heavy fire around them and fired flare bombs in the sky. Israeli naval forces ordered all the fishermen to leave the sea in implementation of the Israeli authorities’ decision. The fishermen were forced to leave; and no casualties were reported.

At approximately 08:05 on Monday, 10 May 2021, a rocket fell on Saleh Dardona St in Jabalia, northern Gaza Strip, while packed with civilians. As a result, 7 Palestinians lost their lives, including a child, and 34 others sustained wounds including 10 children and 2 women. Five of the wounded were classified in critical condition at first, and one of them – a child- was later pronounced dead. Those killed were identified as Nabil No’man Mohammed Dardonah (23); ‘Issmat ‘Abdullah al-Zain (49); Rae’d ‘Abed Zaki Abu Wardah (28); Zakaria Ziad Mohammed ‘Aloush (18); Mousa Khamis Mousa Jneid (18); Bashir Mohammed Mohammed ‘Aloush (55); and Mustafa Mohammed Mahmoud ‘Obeid (17). At approximately 23:00, the Indonesian Hospital pronounced Baraa al-Gharably (14) dead after succumbing to his wounds. PCHR continues to investigate this incident.

At approximately 21:00, dozens of Palestinian young men gathered in Muthalath Kharsa area, south of Dura, southwest of Hebron. The protestors closed the main street with rocks, set fire to tires and threw stones at a military watchtower established on the street. IOF arrived at the area and fired stun grenades and teargas canisters at the stone-throwers, residential houses and shops. As a result, many Palestinians suffocated due to teargas inhalation. The clashes continued until 02:00 dawn; no arrests were reported.

At approximately 22:00, hundreds of Palestinians, from Hebron, organized a peaceful protest against IOF’s attacks in Jerusalem. The protest took off in Dura city and headed towards Bab al-Zawiyia area, where a military watchtower was established on the closed Shuhada Street. The protestors chanted slogans and raised Palestinian flags. When they arrived at the checkpoint, dozens of Israeli soldiers suppressed them and fired stun grenades and teargas canisters at them. As a result, many protestors suffocated due to teargas inhalation. The protestors also set fire to tires and threw stones at IOF, who chased them between shops and on Wad al-Tuffah street and fired live and rubber bullets at them. As a result, 13 protestors were wounded: 5 with live bullets and 8 with rubber bullets. The clashes continued until 02:00 dawn, and all shops were closed.

Around the same time, dozens of Palestinians, from Beit Ummar village, organized a peaceful protest against IOF’s attacks in Jerusalem. The protest took off in front of the city’s mosque and headed towards the village’s entrance, where a military watchtower was established. When the protestors arrived at the area, IOF deployed and fired stun grenades, teargas canisters and rubber bullets at them. As a result, many of them suffocated due to teargas inhalation.

Incursions and arrests

Thursday, 06 May 2021:

At approximately 01:15, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Silwad, northeast of Ramallah. They deployed in several neighborhoods in the city, raided and searched several houses, mosques and even houses under instruction, and held field investigations to find the perpetrator of Za’tara operation on 02 May 2021. Meanwhile, they arrested Montaser al-Shalaby al-Sahlawi (46), from Turmus Ayya, who was charged of conducting the shooting attack at Za’tara military checkpoint, and Zeyad Abdul Jalil Hamed (57).

At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into Jannatah village, east of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Ahmed Naser Asakra’s (22) house and arrested him.

At approximately 06:20, IOF moved into Tubas. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Khalil Majdi al-Masri (24) and Munir Ibrahim Fuqha (23). IOF took them to unknown destination.

At approximately 10:00, IOF moved into Isawiya, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Khaled Khalil’s (22) house and arrested him.

At approximately 17:00, IOF arrested the guard of the Aqsa Mosque, Bader al-Rajabi, while working near al-Sisila Gate “Chain Gate”, in the western side of the Aqsa Mosque in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City.

At approximately 18:00, IOF arrested Shadi Nidal Abu Subaih (11), while present in front of his house in al-Tur neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. At approximately 21:30, IOF moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Khaled Fawwaz Ali Salah’s (29) house and arrested him.

IOF carried out an incursion in Beit Lid, east of Tulkarm. No arrests were reported.

Friday, 07 May 2021:

At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Aida refugee camp, north of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Khalil Mustafa Kan’an’s (22) house, severely beaten him and his family, and arrested him.

At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Turmus Ayya, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched Montaser al-Shalaby al-Sahlawi’s (44) house, who was arrested yesterday, and charged of conducting the shooting attack at Za’tara military checkpoint on 02 May 2021. IOF took the measurements of his house as a preliminary step for demolition, under the pretext of collective punishment against those who carrying attacks.

At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. They raided and searched Habib Aziz Issa’s (28) house and arrested him.

At approximately 03:15, IOF arrested Jehad Mehraj Shehada (22) and Mohammed Ahmed Sudani (18), from Tulkarm refugee camp, while passing through Za’tara military checkpoint, south of Nablus. IOF took them to unknown destinations.

At approximately 23:00, IOF stationed at Qalandiya military checkpoint, north of the occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Sayyaf Mohammed Abdo (28) and Saji Farah Ataya (36), from Kafr Ni’ma, west of Ramallah, while attempting to enter the Aqsa Mosque.

IOF carried out (8) incursions in Bir al-Basha, Jalamah, Jalbun, Deir Ghazaleh, and Beit Qad, northeast of Jenin; Beita, southeast of Nablus; Beddya, west of Salfit; Bani Na’im and al-Kum in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Saturday, 08 May 2021:

At approximately 01:30, IOF stationed at a military checkpoint established at the southern entrance of Jericho, arrested Abdullah Montaser al-Hinnawi (20) and Mahmoud Khaled Musleh (20), from Aqabat Jabr refugee camp, southwest of Jericho. IOF took them to unknown destinations.

In morning hours, IOF raided and searched several houses in various neighborhoods in the occupied East Jerusalem and arrested (23) civilians and took them to several investigation centers in the occupied city. PCHR keeps the names of the arrestees.

Amjad Abu Asab, head of the family committee of Jerusalem prisoners, said that all the arrestees were arrested in cases belonging to the Aqsa Mosque. He added that the arresting campaign coincided with “al-Qadr Night”, and the so called “Jerusalem Day”, to empty Jerusalem from its civilians and open the way for settlers to enter it.

Sunday, 05 May 2021:

At approximately 05:00, IOF (3) civilians from al-Izariya, east of the occupied East Jerusalem, while present near Bab Huta, one of the Aqsa Mosque’s gates. The arrestees are: Khaled Yaser Abu Zeyad, Bashar Bader, and Hamza Taqesh.

At approximately 11:30, IOF moved into Shu’afat neighborhood, north of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Nasr al-Dein Subhi Abu Khudair (59), one of the Palestinian National Movement leaders, and arrested him.

It should be noted that Abu Khudair is a former prisoner who spent up to 26 years in the Israeli prisons, and he was released two months ago after three months of the administrative arrest.

At approximately 13:00, IOF moved into Beit Hanina village, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Tareq al-Joulani’s (21) house and arrested him.

At approximately 17:00, IOF stationed at Qalandiya military checkpoint, west of the Aqsa Mosque, in the West Bank, arrested Hamza Ahmed Yamen (31), from Tal village, while returning from the Aqsa Mosque. IOF took him to an unknown destination.

At approximately 19:00, IOF moved into Sur Baher village, south of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Dandis’s (20) house and arrested him.

IOF carried out (4) incursions in Yatta, Kharas, Fawwar refugee camp, and Shwiaka, north of Tulkarm. No arrests were reported.

Monday, 10 May 2021:

At approximately 01:00, IOF and a crane moved into Aqraba, northeast of Nablus. They raided and searched the prisoner Raddad Fawzi Bani Minnah’s house and confiscated his vehicle. Raddad was arrested since 04 May 2021, while searching for Montaser al-Shalaby, the perpetrator of Za’tara operation on 02 May 2021.

At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Tarqumiyah, northwest of Hebron. They raided and searched (3) houses and arrested (3) civilians; including a girl and took them to unknown destinations. The arrestees are: Saqer Khalil Qutniya (28), Awwad Abdul Rahman Ja’afra (20), and Mais Tha’er al-Mraqtan (21).

At approximately 04:30, IOF moved into Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Suhaib Ragheb al-Sa’di (27), and his cousin, Ayman Ghassan Ragheb al-Sa’di (22), and took them to unknown destinations.

IOF carried out (4) incursions in al-‘Aroub refugee camp, Beit Ula, Halhul, and Deir Samit in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

III. Settlement Expansion and settler violence in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem

Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property

At approximately 11:00 On Sunday, 09 May 2021, IOF backed by military vehicles and accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration vehicle moved into Kherbet Khelet al-Dabe’a, east of Yatta, south of Hebron.  They deployed in the area, and the Civil Administration officer confiscated an excavator belonging to Jihad Mohammed Harb while he was digging a water wall.  The confiscation was under the pretext of working Area C.

At approximately 10:00 on Monday, 10 May 2021, IOF accompanied with a crane moved into the monuments area in Sebastia, northwest of Nablus.  IOF confiscated a 25-sqm agricultural caravan belonging to ‘Abdel ‘Aziz Rayes ‘Abdel ‘Aziz al-Nabulsi from Nablus under the pretext of its presence in Area C.

Settler attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property

At approximately 18:45 on Thursday, 06 May 2021, settlers from “Kawkab al-Sabah settlement  established on al-Mughayyir village land, west of Ramallah, threw stones at a car belonging to Yazeed Mustafa Hussein Zaid al-Deen from Majdal Bani Fadel, southeast of Nablus, and broke its windshield before he could run away from them to his village.

At approximately 10:30, settlers from “Yitzahar” settlement established on the southeastern lands in Nablus threw stones at a car belonging to Belal Mohammed Sa’id Qat from Madma village and broke the windshield.  He managed to run away to his village.

At approximately 18:00 on Friday, 07 May 2021, 2 settlers from “Avigayil” settlement outpost established on Palestinian lands confiscated from eastern Yatta, south of Hebron, threw stones at Mahmoud Hussein Hamamdah (49), from al-Mafqarah village, when he was in the lands near the outpost taking his sheep to the water well there.  As a result, he sustained bruises and a rupture in his right arm, forcing him to leave and go to a medical center, where he received treatment.

At approximately 17:00 on Saturday, 08 May 2021, 2 settlers from “Havat Ma’oun” settlement outpost established on Palestinian lands in eastern Yatta, south of Hebron, threw stones using slingshots at a shepherd who was in the pastoral lands adjacent to the outpost.  After 20 minutes, the 2 settlers ran away while a number of soldiers accompanied with a group of settlers arrived at the area.  Residents of at-Tuwani village arrived as well and clashes and stone-throwing broke out with the settlers while the soldiers fired randomly teargas canisters at the village residents and nearby houses.  As a result, winter grain plantings were burnt belonging to Meghnem al-Harini, and a girl was hit with a teargas canister in her shoulder while she was in her house. During this, one of the settlers opened fire in the air, and IOF did not intervene to stop the settlers’ attacks but even provided them protection and participated in the suppression of the Palestinians.  The villagers withdrew at 19:00 while backups of Israeli Border Guard Police officers arrived and stayed until 21:00.

At approximately 16:00 on Sunday, 09 May 2021, a group of settlers from “Adei Ad” settlement, northeast of Ramallah, moved into al-Saher area, east of al-Mughayer village, northeast of Ramallah.  The settlers set on fire the agricultural fields planted with wheat crops on an area of 40 dunums belonging to Fadel Ibrahim Hamed al-Na’asan.  After what they did, the settlers went back to the settlement and after hours the villagers could extinguish the fire.

At approximately 17:00, dozens of settlers gathered near the Hebrew University established on the lands near al-‘Issawiya village, northeast of East Jerusalem and threw stones at the Palestinians there.  Clashes broke out in the area for 2 hours, and IOF intervened to provide full protection for the settlers.  IOF fired rubber-coated bullets, teargas canisters and sound bombs at the Palestinians and arrested 2 of them, who have not been identified yet, taking them to an unknown destination.

At approximately 13:00 on Monday, 10 May 2021, with IOF’s backup, settlers from “Price Tag” group coming from “Yitzahar” settlement established on the southeastern lands of Nablus, attacked the eastern outskirts of Urif village   and threw stones at a high school for boys in al-Safafir area.  They damaged the solar panels on the school roof before a number of civilians could confront them and threw stones, forcing them to go back to their settlement.  When they were on their way to the settlement, the settlers damaged 15 olive seedlings behind the school in al-Marah area belonging to Nidal Mohammed Kamel Sabbah, from Urif village.

Around the same time, another group of settlers attacked Palestinian lands in Burin village to the east of the settlement and set fire in Khashabah area and Khelet ‘Amer.  The fire caught tens of dunums before the villagers and Civil Defense could extinguish the fire.

  1. Closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement of persons and goods:

Closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement of persons and goods:

The Gaza Strip:

On Monday, 10 May 2021, the Israeli authorities closed Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing one after complete closure of the sea within the collective punishment policy against the Palestinian civilians in Gaza.

According to PCHR’s follow-up, the Israeli authorities declared Monday morning the closure of Beit Hanoun crossing, and only humanitarian cases are allowed, which was confirmed by PCHR.  IOF also declared on Monday, 09 May 2021, withdrawing the decision of allowing the businessmen to travel via the crossing after the Palestinian Civil Affairs Ministry announced on Thursday afternoon, 06 May 2021, that the Israeli authorities informed them of allowing again their travel via the crossing after they have been denied since the outbreak of coronavirus in the Gaza Strip.

On Monday evening, the Israeli authorities closed Karm Abu Salem Crossing, the sole commercial crossing in the Gaza Strip, until further notice.  The Coordination Committee for the entry of goods into the Gaza Strip stated that the Israeli authorities declared the closure of the crossing starting from Tuesday until further notice and banning the entry of goods, food supplies and Gaza Strip’s needs.

On Sunday, 09 May 2021, the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), MG Ghassan Alian, announced closure of the allowed fishing area in the Gaza Strip starting from the moment of the announcement until further notice. Afterwards, the Israeli gunboats started chasing the Palestinian fishing boats and ordering them to leave the Sea.

The decision to close the Gaza Sea and ban fishermen from fishing and sailing has affected the livelihoods of 4,160 fishermen and 700 workers in professions associated with the fishing sector; the main providers for their families (a total of 27,700 persons) are threatened with further deterioration. Even before this decision, Gazan fishermen already suffered and were unable to fish and sail freely in the allowed fishing area due to the recurrent Israeli attacks at sea and the ban on the entry of equipment and necessary supplies for fishermen. Consequently, hundreds of fishermen are effectively unable to provide for their families’ basic needs, such as food, medicine, clothing, and education.

These decisions are part of the comprehensive closure and illegal and inhuman collective punishment policy imposed by IOF on the Gaza Strip.

The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the history of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life.

The West Bank:

In addition to 108 permanent checkpoints and closed roads, this week witnessed the establishment of 43 temporary checkpoints that restrict the movement of goods and individuals, where IOF searched Palestinians’ vehicles, checked their IDs and arrested 6 of them. IOF tightened its restrictions on the movement at the checkpoints and closed some of them for hours.

Jerusalem:

On Sunday evening, 09 May 2021, IOF closed Sheikh al-Jarrah neighborhood and denied entry into it except for the residents.

On Saturday evening, 08 May 2021, IOF closed Beit Iksa checkpoint and denied movement from and into the village.

On Saturday evening, 08 May 2021, IOF closed al-Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and denied entry into it except for the residents.

Bethlehem:

On Thursday, 06 May 2021, IOF established 3 checkpints at the entrance to al-Khader and Beit Fajjar villages and at al-Nashash intersection, south of the City.

On Friday, 07 May 2021, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to Beit Fajjr village and at Fureidis village intersection, east of Bethlehem.

On Saturday, 08 May 2021, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the western entrance to Tekoa village and western entrance to Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem.

On Sunday, 09 May 2021, IOF established 3 checkpoints at the entrances to Husan and Nahalin villages and at the western entrance to Beit Fajjar village.

Nablus:

On Thursday, 06 May 2021, IOF established 3 checkpoints near Deir Sharaf village intersection (on the Nablus-Jenin main road), “Shavei Shomron” settlement intersection (on the Nablus-Tulkarm main street), west of Nablus, and at Bita intersection, southeast of Nablus.

Jericho:

On Thursday, 06 May 2021, IOF established a checkpoint at the Dead Sea intersection.

On Friday, 07 May 2021, IOF established a checkpoint at southern entrance to Jericho.

On Saturday, 08 May 2021, IOF established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Jericho.

Hebron:

On Thursday, 06 May 2021, IOF established 5 checkpoints at the entrances to Beit Awwa village, Sa’ir village, al-‘Arroub refugee camp, al-Shyoukh village and northern Yatta.

On Friday, 07 May 2021, IOF established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to Idhna, al-Samou’a, southern Hebron and Beit Ummar village.

On Saturday, 08 May 2021, IOF established 3 checkpoints at the western entrance to Hebron, southern entrance to Halhul and the entrance to Beit Kahel village.

On Monday, 10 May 2021, IOF established 6 checkpoints at entrances to al-‘Arroub and al-Fawwar refugee camps, eastern Duraa, al-Thaheriya village, Bani Na’im village and northern Hebron.

Qalqilya:

On Sunday, 09 May 2021, IOF established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqilya.

Salfit:

On Saturday, 08 May 2021, IOF established 2 checkpoints at the entrances to Salfit and Kafr al-Deek village, west of Salfit.

Day 8 of Israeli Offensive on Gaza: Non-Stop Bombing and Systematic Infrastructure Destruction

Source

Ref: 64/2021

Date: 17 May 2021

Time: 15:00 GMT

23 Palestinians Killed, Including 3 Women and 7 Children, and 53 Others Wounded, Including 8 Women and 18 Children,

Death Toll Mounts to 204, Including 59 Children and 34 Women, and Total Number of Injuries Rises to 836, Including 251 Children and 184 Women

For the 8th consecutive day, Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) continued their offensive on the Gaza Strip, in violation of the basic principles of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL): necessity, proportionality and distinction. Tens of Israeli warplanes carried out dozens of intense airstrikes, along with artillery and gunboat shelling. The airstrikes targeted more houses and civilian facilities and intensified the destruction of roads and infrastructure, inflicting more casualties among Palestinian civilians and causing extensive damage to their properties.  As a result, IOF’s systematic destruction of streets and crossroads obstructed the movement of vehicles and ambulances, especially on roads leading to al-Shifa Hospital.

On Monday, IOF declared that the third phase of the military operation on the Gaza Strip has started and that 54 warplanes fired 110 missiles attacked 35 targets within 20 minutes, including 15 kilometer-tunnels; according to IOF’s claims, while the facts on the ground indicate that the airstrikes targeted more houses, facilities and streets.

The power outage crisis in the Gaza Strip aggravated as the electricity supply dropped to three to four hours a day that is inadequate for the vital facilities to provide services to the people of the Gaza Strip.  The Electricity Company stated that the components of the electricity distribution network sustained massive destruction as 5 main electric power transmission lines, which supply 60 megawatts, broke down since the beginning of the offensive while the rest lines break down from time to time and become out of service due to the airstrikes and destruction of many places.  The power plant warned that it would be forced to shut down this evening due to insufficient fuel supply. The Power Generating Company announced that “J4” electric power transmission line, which supplies Gaza City and passes through Street 8 and Street 10, sustained severe damage due to the intense airstrikes on the area.  As a result, electricity went off on vacant areas in the City.


The forced displacement of tens of thousands of residents from their houses in eastern Gaza Strip continued due to the violent artillery shelling as shelters were opened to receive them without so far providing the adequate circumstances. Also, almost all aspects of daily life have been disrupted due to the non-stop airstrikes.

Further to PCHR’s press release published yesterday, Israeli warplanes carried out hundreds of airstrikes while the Israeli gunboats and artillery shelled various and indiscriminate targets across the Gaza Strip. As a result, 23 Palestinians, including 3 women and 7 children, while 53 others, including 8 women and 18 children, were injured. Additionally, the airstrikes targeted 21 houses, several facilities, governmental headquarters and infrastructure on a wide scale. Thus, the number of targeted houses has risen to 115, including multi-story buildings and several towers.

Moreover, the death toll since the beginning of the Israeli offensive has risen to 204, including 59 children and 34 women, and the number of those wounded has risen to 836, including 251 children and 184 women.

According to the daily update by the Palestinian Ministry of Health, the total number of injuries has risen to 1300, including 50 serious injuries. These large numbers of injuries have increased the burden on medical crews and the already exhausted healthcare system due to the Israeli-imposed closure and the outbreak of coronavirus in addition to the negative impact of power outage on the operation of laboratories, blood banks and surgeries, especially in light of the growing number of injuries. Also, during these days, Gaza hospitals rely on generators due to long hours of power outage, rendering hospitals in urgent need of constant supply of fuel.

The following are the most significant developments:

Northern Gaza:

Israeli warplanes carried out many airstrikes and Israeli artillery stationed along the border fence and gunboats stationed off shore fired many shells at the eastern and western areas of the governorate. As a result, 4 Palestinians were killed while 32 others, including 16 children and 4 women, were wounded. Also, the airstrikes targeted 13 houses; 7 were completely destroyed while others were partially destroyed. As a result a sponge company sustained serve damage while a hospital, a hotel, a mosque, public roads, and infrastructure sustained destruction.

At approximately 15:00, the Israeli artillery fired a shell at Jamal Hussain Khalil al-Shawish’s (62) house in central Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip. As a result, the house sustained damage.

At approximately 15:20, Israeli warplanes fired 2 missiles at a 4-story house belonging to Hamed al-Shembari (55), east of Beit Hanoun. As a result, the house and nearby houses sustained severe damage, but no casualties were reported.

At approximately 17:20, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a 2-story house belonging to Mohammed Fawzi Naser (47) in central Beit Hanoun. As a result, the house was completely destroyed.

At approximately 17:35, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a 2-story house belonging to Hussain Khalil Hussain Fayyad (44), east of Beit Hanoun, and completely destroyed it.

At approximately 18:00, the Israeli artillery fired a shell at a 2-story house belonging to Hitham Mohammed Abu ‘Osda (43), east of Beit Hanoun. As a result, fire broke out in the house.

At approximately 18:30, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a 2-story house belonging to Nabil Foad Mahmoud al-Masri (57) in central Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip. As a result, the house sustained damage.

At approximately 19:15, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a group of citizens in the center of Zaytun neighborhood in Beit Hanoun. As a result, 3 of them were killed namely Mo’ath Nabil Mohammed al-Za’aneen (27), Mohammed Yousef Mahmoud ‘Abdullah (31) and Mohammed ‘Awni ‘Abdullah al-Za’aneen (25).

At approximately 19:50, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at Belal Mustafa Yahiya ‘Asaliyia’s (30) house in central Jabalia, and completely destroyed it.

At approximately 20:20, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a 2-story house belonging to Mohammed Shehdah Mas’oud al-Moghrabi (52), east of Beit Hanoun. As a result, the house roof and walls sustained damage.

At approximately 20:50, Israeli warplanes fired a missile at a 3-story house belonging to Mahmoud Mohammed Ahmed Ba’lousha in al-Salateen neighborhood, west of Beit Lahia, and completely destroyed it.

At approximately 07:30 on Monday, 17 May 2021, the Israeli artillery fired at least 2 shells at Foam Co. Sponge Company near the former Civil Administration Headquarter on Salah al-Deen Street, east of Jabalia, north of the Gaza Strip. As a result, a fire broke out in the area for 2 hours and civil defense crews rushed to extinguish the fire. No casualties were reported.

At approximately 08:30, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at Abdul Aziz al-Khaldi’s house. As a result, the 3-storey villa, southwest of al-Sudaniya, was completely destroyed and nearby houses, Mathaf Hotel, al-Khaldi Mosque and Hamad Rehabilitation and Prosthetics Hospital sustained damage.

At approximately 09:30, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at Fayez Ibrahim Mohammed Abu Ali’s house. As a result, the 3-storey house in Jabalia refugee camp was completely destroyed.

At approximately 10:15, Israeli warplanes launched 2 missiles at Abdullah Abu Rayya’s house. As a result, the ground-floor house, located in Jabalia, was completely destroyed, and Husam Mohammed Othman Abu Harabeed (36), a commander in al-Quds Brigades, was killed, as IOF declared targeting him.

At approximately 10:30, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a group of citizens in al-Qasasib neighborhood in Jabalia. As a result, one of them was wounded and taken to the Indonesian Hospital, where his injury was reported moderate.

At approximately 10:45, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a house belonging to Yousef al-Liddawi’s sons in Jabalia. As a result, the roof of the 6-storey house sustained damage.

On Sunday evening and Monday morning and dawn, Israeli gunboats and tanks fired dozens of shells on east and west of the Gaza Strip. Additionally, a strong suffocating odor spread in the northern Gaza Strip governorate, but no casualties were reported.

Gaza City:

Israeli warplanes carried out dozens of airstrikes on various targets across the city. As a result, a Palestinian was killed and 12 others were wounded, including 3 women and 5 children. The airstrikes targeted 5 residential multi-story buildings, main roads and vital streets, security sites belonging to the Ministry of Interior, sites belonging to the Palestinian Resistance, public facilities, shops and a civilian. On the other hand, the civil Defense crews retrieved 13 dead bodies, including 3 women and 7 children, from under the rubble of their houses on al-Wehda Street.

On Sunday, 16 May 2021, medical and Civil Defense crews pulled out 13 dead bodies, including 3 women and 7 children, from under the rubble of their houses on al-Wehda Street, raising the number of deaths to 43, most of them were children and women.

The deaths were: Subhiya Isma’el Hussain Abu al-Ouf (73), Ameen Mohammed Hamad al-Qolaq (90), Tawfiq Isma’el Hussain Abu al-Ouf (80) and his wife, Majdiya Khalil Hussain Abu al-Ouf (82), Raja’ Subhi Isma’el al-Ifranji “Abu al-Ouf and  3 of her children, Mira Rami Riyad al-Ifranji (12), Yazan (13), Ameer (9), and Hala Mohammed Mo’een al-Qolaq (13), and her sister, Yara (10), Rola (6) and Lana (4) Riyad Hasan Shkontana, and Mohammed Ahmed Musbah Ikki (40).

At approximately 18:50, Israeli warplanes launched 2 missiles at Ali Mousa Mohammed Affana’s (64) house, north of Gaza City. As a result, the 5-storey house (200 sqms), which included 10 apartments and sheltered 10 families, including 11 women and 21 children, was completely destroyed. It should be noted that Israeli Intelligence Services phone called the neighbors and ordered them to evacuate the house as it would be targeted.

At approximately 19:30, Israeli warplanes launched 2 missiles at Abdul Kareem Isma’el Ibrahim al-Ashram’s (60) house in al-Sabra neighborhood, south of the Gaza City. As a result, the 6-storey house (400 sqms) sheltering 7 families, including 12 women and 16 children, sustained severe destruction in the 3rd, 4th and fifth floors. It should be noted that Israeli Intelligence Services called the neighbors and ordered them to evacuate.

At approximately 21:00, Israeli warplanes launched 3 missiles at Jamal Attiya Hamdiya’s (62) house in al-Shuja’iya neighborhood. As a result, the 4-storey house and a nearby 3-storey house belonging to Mohammed Sa’eed Khalil al-Manasra, sheltering 5 families, was completely destroyed. It should be noted that the Israeli Intelligence Services phone called the neighbors and ordered them to evacuate.

At approximately 00:15 on Monday, 17 May 2021, Israeli warplanes launched 3 missiles at Mohammed Ahmed Saleh al-Dairi’s (47) house in al-Sabra neighborhood. As a result, the 4-storey house (500 sqms), comprised of 16 apartments and sheltering 17 families of 115 members, was completely destroyed. It should be noted that Israeli Intelligence Services phone called the neighbors and ordered them to evacuate.

After 5 minutes, Israeli warplanes launched 2 missiles at Hamdiya Othman Abdul Rahman Hamdan’s (60) house in al-Sabra neighborhood. As a result, the 3-storey house comprised of 3 apartments (each is 200 sqms) sheltering 3 families, including 6 women and 6 children, was completely destroyed, and nearby houses sustained partial damage. It should be noted that the Israeli Intelligence Services phone called the residents and ordered them to evacuate.

At approximately 01:00 and for an hour, Israeli warplanes carried out a huge number of intense airstrikes on Gaza City targeting main roads and infrastructures on al-Rasheed Street and other streets, in addition to destroying main roads and streets, which connect Tal al-Hawa neighborhood with al-Sheikh Ijlin neighborhood.  Moreover, the tourist facilities along the Gaza seaside sustained severe damage while nearby residential buildings and towers sustained partial damage.  Many security sites in Ansar Security Compound, west of Gaza City.

At approximately 12:30, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a civilian car travelling near Abu Hasira crossroad, west of Gaza City. As a result, the driver, Adeeb Sa’eed Deeb al-Sourani (43), was killed.

Around the same time, Israeli warplanes launched a missile at a group of citizens who were near the Maldives Coffeshop at Gaza seaside. As a result, 2 of them were killed, and nearby tourist facilities sustained severe damage.

Central Gaza Strip:

Israeli warplanes carried out several airstrikes on different parts of the central Gaza Strip.  They targeted houses, agricultural and vacant lands, and military sites.  As a result, a house was completely destroyed and dozens of houses near the targeted places sustained partial damage.  Moreover, a child and a woman were wounded.

At approximately 03:40 on Monday, 17 May 2021, Israeli warplanes launched 3 missiles at a house belonging to the heirs of Tawfiq al-Fallit in Deir al-Balah. As a result, the 2-storey house (250 sqms), which sheltered 4 families of 18 members, including 9 children and 3 women, was completely destroyed, while 5 nearby houses sustained partial damage.

At approximately 08:00, the Israeli artillery launched several shells at a vacant land, east of Deir al-Balah. As a result, a child sustained shrapnel wounds and a woman suffocated.

IOF continued to fire artillery shells in the eastern side of the city, setting the agricultural fields on fire.

Khan Younis

IOF carried out several airstrikes on different parts of the city.  The airstrikes targeted a house and completely destroyed it, causing damage to nearby houses, a kindergarten and agricultural lands.  As a result, 6 were wounded, including a child, and the injury of one of them was reported serious.

At approximately 15:55 on Sunday, 16 May 2021, Israeli warplanes launched 2 missiles at a house belonging to Mazen Fayeq Shlash Shbeir in central Khan Younis and completely destroyed it, causing severe damage to the nearby houses and partial damage to the Islamic Complex Kindergartens near it.  It should be noted that few days ago an Israeli drone fired a missile at the 150-sqm house of 3 floors that was home to 3 families of 15 members, including 3 women and 9 children.

At approximately 21:05, an Israeli drone fired a missile at an agricultural land in al-Mawasi in western Khan Younis.  As a result, four were wounded, including a child, when they were near their houses.  The injury of one of them was reported serious while the rest injuries were moderate.

At approximately 22:10, an Israeli drone fired a missile at a group of citizens in al-Fokhari area.  As a result, two sustained moderate wounds.

At approximately 12:22, an Israeli drone fired a missile at a group of citizens in ‘Abasan al-Jadidah.  As a result, Ahmed Fayez Hasan ‘Arafat (29), from the village, were killed while another sustained minor wounds.

IOF continued to fire artillery shells at eastern Khan Younis, setting fire to the agricultural lands.  Moreover, the gunboats sporadically shelled the seaside.

Rafah:

Israeli warplanes carried out several airstrikes on different targets in Rafah City, where 10 missiles were launched.  The airstrikes targeted a house, 5 trucks, a bulldozer, agricultural lands, streets and roads. As a result, two were killed.  Moreover, the Israeli artillery intensely fired shells, smoke grenades and sound bombs.

At approximately 18:45 on Sunday, 16 May 2021, an Israeli drone fired a missile at an agricultural land in Msabeh neighborhood, north of Rafah.  As a result, Tariq Mahmoud Qasem al-Qadi (39) and Sameh Jihad Sameh al-Qadi (23) were killed. 

At approximately 07:30 on Monday, 17 May 2021, IOF fired artillery shells at houses in al-Shokah village in eastern Rafah.  As a result, one of the shells hit a house belonging to Mohammed Safa Mohammed Abu Sheiban, and fire broke out in the first floor.  The neighbors managed to extinguish the fire, and no casualities were reported.  The Civil Defense vehicles could not reach the area due to the intense artillery shelling and lack of coordination with ICRC to enter the area.

At approximately 13:30, IOF fired artillery shells at houses in al-Naser village, northeast of Rafah.  As a result, a number of trucks and a bulldozer belonging to al-‘Attar Family were hit and burnt.  No injuries were reported.

Since the morning IOF stationed along the border fence in eastern Rafah fired artillery shells, sound bombs and smoke grenades at houses, agricultural lands and streets in al-Shokah and al-Naser village, north and east of Rafah City, causing fear among civilians.  As a result, 5000 civilians were forced to leave and seek refuge in 5 UNRWA schools, noting that they forcibly entered the schools without the guards’ approval while no services were provided by the UNRWA and the donations were provided by local societies and benefactors.

PCHR strongly condemns IOF’s use of mass explosive power, which proves Israel’s intention to inflict harm on Palestinian civilians in disregard for IHL principles of distinction and proportionality through killing and massacring entire families.

PCHR’s investigations indicate that IOF has effectively classified civilians as legitimate military targets, in violation of IHL principles. PCHR renews its warning that civilians are paying the heaviest price during the escalation and emphasizes that IOF’s ongoing strikes on residential populated areas and the use of weapons based on collective retaliation constitute grave breaches of the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 that amount to war crimes.

 PCHR warns of further deterioration in the Palestinian civilians’ humanitarian conditions; either those displaced or those whose houses were demolished, as they have become homeless and sought refuge in schools in degrading and inhuman conditions. Thus, PCHR calls upon th international community, including the High Contracting Parties to the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, to act urgently in order to end all IOF’s military hostilities and to provide protection for the civilians in light of the grave violations of the international humanitarian law, including murders and large-scale destruction of civilian objects and property.   PCHR also calls upon the international community and all UN bodies and agencies to take all measures necessary to stop the mass forced displacement of Gaza Strip’s civilians that is conducted by IOF through applying the scorched-earth policy across the Gaza Strip, particularly in the northern part.  PCHR calls upon the International humanitarian organizations to provide the humanitarian needs of the displaced civilians, including food, clothes, water and potable water, and hygiene services.

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What makes the Palestinian catastrophe incomparable to any crime that has occurred for humanity?

May 15, 2021

By Batoul Sbeity

 Why is Palestine considered the core issue when it comes to human justice, such that Al-Quds Day- a day to raise awareness about the plight of all oppressed groups is done in the name and the sanctity of Al-Aqsa? 

1)  The perpetrating entities of the oppression:

The formation of Israel was a settler-colonial conspiracy project- the biggest of its kind in history that was founded by the hegemonic global ruling system solely to serve their interest. 

The reality is that the Zionists were hunters for sources of power in the world that could actualize their vision of a Jewish homeland, and wherever the imperialists place the Zionists, they will follow. 

During the beginning of the 20th century, imperial Britain was adamant about creating for itself an extension in the land of Palestine, which was specifically chosen due to the benefits of the strategic location and the history of the land that could be used as a justifying pretext to the world.

It is the responsibility of all of humanity to correct the biggest shame that have occurred. All nations need to apply pressure on their governments to sever ties with the occupying state and grant the right of return and compensation for all Palestinian citizens. The Zionists and their imperial masters weaponized the anti-semitism that existed within sections of the people and activated this into a slogan that was used to justify the containment of settler Jews in Palestine whilst blackmailing those resisting the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians into accepting this new reality.

The U.S.S.R was the first government to recognize the illegitimate establishment of Israel and sent a large number of settler Jews there, whilst the U.S. took over Britain’s role after rising to power in post-WWII, providing the bulk of financial, political, security, and military support to the occupying state- to the extent that its existence is purely dependent and linked to the U.S. 

Israel’s functional role is to act as a stick for the world superpower, namely the U.S., used in order to punish other entities in the region that fail to obey U.S. orders and for them to maintain a direct presence at the heart of the strategic Middle East (West Asia).

2)  The nature of the oppression: 

Israel is the only settler-colonial state existing today. This means the existence of the occupying Israeli settlers is predicated on the forced and violent removal of the land’s indigenous inhabitants prior to 1948.

During the 1948 Nakba, Israeli forces killed an estimated 13,000 Palestinians and forcibly evicted 700,000-1 million Palestinians from their homes and land. Five hundred and thirty-one (50%) of Palestinian villages were entirely depopulated and destroyed. 

The Nakba continues today. Palestinians are the largest and longest-suffering group of refugees in the world. One in three refugees worldwide is Palestinian and over 60% are registered for humanitarian assistance with the UN.
Within occupied Palestine, the occupying state has displayed no limits to their aggression in pursuit of their expansionist ideals while have not been held to any account for their crimes against humanity.  

3)  The magnitude of the oppression:

The perpetrators realize a great magnitude of direct force and violence is needed to prevent any rebellion movement since the thief understands the victim will resist with whatever they have, and they, therefore, seek to crush the spirit of this resistance. The occupying state has made it mandatory for every Israeli Jew to serve in the ‘IDF’, and they are indoctrinated from a young age to believe every Palestinian is a ‘terrorist’, whilst their survival is dependent on getting rid of the indigenous Palestinians. 

With over 2.5 million Palestinian’s living in the West Bank, an extremely densely populated region, Israel is not only seizing the best land and resources through annexing the territories and giving themselves false authority over the land, but they are striving to create an unbearable condition for the Palestinian’s living within, such that they become hopeless and would want to immigrate and abandon their own homeland. 

4)  Continuity of the oppression:

Since the financial and military existence of Israel is completely linked to the U.S., this oppression will continue until Israel loses its functional role due to the balance of powers that are increasingly not in the U.S.’s favor in the region.

Besides the axis of resistance and its proponents, all countries are turning a blind eye to the continuous oppression in Palestine, which is legitimized by the majority of the world since there is an overlap between their aims and they only account for what is in their interests. They seek to wipe the history of Palestine and grant legitimacy to Israel’s existence, although acknowledging its illegality should by any standards create an uprising.

It is the responsibility of all of humanity to correct the biggest shame that have occurred. All nations need to apply pressure on their governments to sever ties with the occupying state and grant the right of return and compensation for all Palestinian citizens. 

Roger Waters just tweeted a video of an Irish MP speaking the truth to an Israeli ambassador

Roger Waters Interview: 'Us + Them' Film, Pink Floyd, David Gilmour -  Rolling Stone

May 12, 2021

ISRAEL LOSES NO CHANCE TO REMIND OF ITSELF IN SYRIA

 05.05.2021 

Video here

Barely a week goes by in Syria, without Israel reminding of itself and the warplanes it has.

At dawn on May 5th, Israeli warplanes carried out an attack on several areas in northwestern Syria, including the port city of Latakia along the Mediterranean coast. The strikes also hit the towns of Hifa, east of Latakia, and Masyaf in Hama province

Syrian Air Defense systems reportedly intercepted most of the missiles that were launched.

According to initial reports, the strike led to the death of a civilian and the wounding of six others, including a child and his mother. This comes in addition to some material losses, including a civilian plastics production factory. A Syrian military site in Deir Shamil, near Masyaf was struck, personnel was injured.

Airstrikes appear to be all the rage in Syria, as the US-led coalition reported that on May 4th it had carried out a strike and eliminated a single ISIS terrorist in Deir Ezzor. Essentially, Washington’s forces carried out a drone strike on a single person sitting in a car.

Comparatively, Russian forces seem to be more effective, on May 3rd and 4th, Russia’s Aerospace Forces carried out dozens of airstrikes on ISIS positions in Syria’s central and eastern regions.

The May 4th strikes targeted locations in the eastern countryside of Hama and the administrative border between Hama and al-Raqqah.

Additionally, Russian fighter jets carried out dozens of airstrikes on the Syrian Desert on May 3rd, along with the ongoing search for ISIS cells in Athria area, Aleppo-Hama-al-Raqqah triangle, Jabal al-Bishri, and other positions in the eastern countryside of Homs. The number of airstrikes is at least 55, and there are reports of an unknown number of casualties.

This increased activity is in preparation of an expected operation by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its Russian support that should take place in the central region, further contain ISIS’ diminished numbers and limit the terrorist influence.

Local media reports claimed that reinforcements from the SAA’s 25th Tiger Force division were deployed to the desert area east of Itria.

Taking advantage of Russia and the SAA’s focus being elsewhere, Turkey and the factions it backs are attempting to stir the pot in northern Syria. Ankara’s forces, and the “moderate opposition” shelled a number of villages in the Aleppo countryside, causing only material damages.

Ankara is taking the chance, as the impending anti-ISIS operation is sure to not last indefinitely, and Damascus’ gaze is sure to turn northward sooner or later. Its positions and those of the militants it supports need to be reinforced and secured.

MORE ON THIS TOPIC:

Israeli Violence Against Palestinian Protesters in Occupied Jerusalem

 April 25, 2021

By Stephen Lendman

Source

Time and again, when Palestinians protest legitimately against Jewish state viciousness, Israeli soldiers and other security forces attack them with live fire, rubber-coated steel bullets, toxic tear gas, and other repressive tactics.

For 11 straight nights, Palestinian residents of Israeli Occupied Jerusalem rallied against assaults and other provocations by police, extremist settlers, and likeminded far-right Jewish hooligans.

According to the Palestine News & Information Agency (WAFA) on Saturday:

“The Jerusalem uprising… expanded to reach the West Bank and Gaza.”

Over 100 Palestinians were injured, nearly two dozen hospitalized, the Palestinian Red Crescent reported. 

WAFA said Saturday night clashes were “in support of the Jerusalem uprising and against Israeli treatment of Palestinians in the holy city.”

What’s going on began on the first day of Ramadan after “Israeli police cut off wires to loudspeakers at Al-Aqsa Mosque minarets in Jerusalem to prevent the call for prayer that alert people to the start and end of the fast as well as the time for prayers,” adding:

For the past 11 nights, “police harassed Jerusalem residents leaving Al-Aqsa Mosque” — Islam’s third holiest site after Mecca’s Sacred Mosque and the Mosque of the Prophet in Madina.

Two nights ago, extremist “Israeli members of the Lahava terror group that advocates killing Palestinians in Jerusalem and taking over their homes joined the police in attacking the city’s Palestinian residents.”

During the weekend, Arab-hating settlers “attacked Palestinian homes and property in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at homes and cars.”

Israeli police and other security forces do nothing to deter them when these incidents happen.

Since the Jerusalem uprising began, “Israeli police (permitted) intrusions” by extremist Jews into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

They’re “allow(ed) to hold rituals in violation of the status quo and the sanctity of the holy site as a Muslim-only worship area, provoking strong reaction from people and countries, such as Jordan, the official custodian over the Muslim and Christian holy places in occupied East Jerusalem,” WAFA explained.

Extremist Jews marched from Jerusalem’s Zion Square to the Old City, chanting: “Death to Arabs.”

In parts of the city, police set up checkpoints, closing off areas to prevent Palestinians from observing traditional Ramadan activities, including prayer at the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Over the weekend, Israeli warplanes and ground forces terror-bombed and shelled Gaza in response to Strip support for abused Palestinians in Jerusalem.

The city is the epicenter of longstanding struggle. 

Israeli Jews consider it their capital, a national and religious center. 

For Christians, it’s where Jesus lived and died, and for Muslims, it’s home to the sacred Al-Aqsa Mosque.

In June 1967, Israel illegally occupied the city. 

On July 30, 1980, the Knesset introduced the Jerusalem Law, officially annexing it as Israel’s unified capital.

On March 1, 1980, Security Council Resolution 465 declared that “all measures taken by Israel to change the physical character, demographic composition, institutional structure or status of the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, or any part thereof, have no legal validity and that Israel’s policy and practices of settling parts of its population and new immigrants in those territories constitute a flagrant (Fourth Geneva) violation.”

These actions also “constitute a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East.”

On July 4, 2004, the International Court of Justice (ICC) ruled that “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Territory, including East Jerusalem, are illegal and an obstacle to peace and to economic and social development (and) have been established in breach of international law.”

Nothing changed. Like the US and other Western countries, Israel operates exclusively by its own rules.

Illegal settlements continue expanding exponentially on stolen Palestinian land.

Israel wants territory from Jordan’s border to the Mediterranean Sea developed for exclusive Jewish use.

Note: Separately on Saturday, scores of Israeli Peace Now activists rallied against police violence and rights of Arab Jerusalem residents, the group’s head Shaqued Morag, saying:

“We want to send a message both to the (Netanyahu regime) and to our Palestinian neighbors that we won’t stay silent in front of the violence and the incitement and the racism.” 

“We will defend the right of everybody to live in Jerusalem peacefully.”

For his part, Netanyahu warned that his regime is “prepared for all scenarios” —suggesting that if protests continue, so will police state violence.

Just Like in the US, Policing in Israel is Rooted in Racist Violence

April 15th, 2021

By Jessica Buxbaum

Source

In the US, policing can be traced back to nineteenth-century slave patrols. In Israel, security forces have roots in Haganah, a Zionist militia group involved in the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

HAIFA, ISRAEL — Israeli state violence manifests in several ways—police killings, home demolitions, displacement and detentions—but each is grounded in the same colonialist ideology spanning decades.

In the U.S., policing can be traced back to the nineteenth century slave patrols designed to control and suppress Black people. In Israel, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and Israeli security agency, Shin Bet, have roots in the Haganah, a Zionist militia group involved in the ethnic cleansing of Palestine (known as the Nakba) before Israel became a state.

The Haganah’s off-shoot organizations—Irgun and Lehi—committed atrocities like the Deir Yassin massacre. On April 9, 1948, these Zionist fighters stormed the village of Deir Yassin, “executed over 100 men, women and children, and then burned their dead bodies.”

Israeli history of the Haganah often tries to separate it from the right-wing Irgun and Lehi paramilitary organizations, but massacres were a core part of the Haganah’s strategy. During the Nakba, the Haganah carried out bombings, executions, and even castration.

Miko Peled, a human rights activist whose father served in the Israeli Army and was part of the Haganah, considers the Zionist group a terrorist organization.

“Their entire existence was to execute the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. So, there’s no way to execute ethnic cleansing other than [by] terrorizing the population,” Peled said, adding:

The Haganah became the Israeli Army after May of 1948, but in terms of their mode of operations and ideology, they were really just the same terrorist organization glorified now as an army.”

Haganah Israel
Zionist militia members walk in front of an Arab hotel bombed by Haganah in Jerusalem, May 6, 1948. Jim Pringle | AP

While the IDF originates from the Haganah, the Israel Police derives from the Palestine Police Force. Established by the British, the organization grew from a primarily Palestinian institution at its founding in 1920 to one mostly comprised of British and Jewish officers by 1948.

Specifically, the Jewish forces dominated the Notrim, a branch of the service defending Jewish settlements. The majority of its members were recruited from the Haganah. The Notrim became what is known today as the Israeli Military Police. Between 1947 and 1948, Palestinian police officers joined Arab forces defending Palestine, while Jewish police collaborated with Zionist militias.

Peled explained that these interconnections between the different police and military forces still exist:

The police, the military, and the Shabak [Shin Bet] all work together. A lot of officers retire from the military and go to the police or the Shabak. They were all raised on the same ideology and the mode of operation is Palestinian lives don’t matter.”

The violence and racist beliefs of slave patrols, the Haganah, and the Palestine Police Force can still be witnessed today in American policing and the Israeli Army.

The police brutality crisis in Israel-Palestine

On March 29, Munir Anabtawi’s mother called police to help subdue her mentally ill son, who had a knife, in their home in the Wadi Nisnas neighborhood of Haifa. The police arrived but instead of diffusing the situation, an officer shot Anabtawi twice in the chest, killing him.

The incident sparked renewed concern over the Israel Police’s treatment of marginalized communities, specifically of Palestinians with and without Israeli citizenship.

Anabtawi, 33, was a Palestinian citizen of Israel. His killing is still under investigation, but the officer who fatally shot him is now back at work after Israel’s Ministry of Justice accepted his claim he shot in self-defense. According to the officer, Anabtawi tried to stab him. A knife was found at the scene.

Munir Anabtawi
Palestinians from the occupied city of Haifa protest following the murder of Munir Anabtawi, March, 30, 2021. Photo | Activestills

Both Public Security Minister Amir Ohana and the Commander-in-Chief of Police have come out in support of the officer.

Alber Nahas, the lawyer for the Anabtawi family, disputes the police’s self-defense reasoning. He argues the police are professionals and should know how to de-escalate a confrontation without killing an individual.

“They could have shot him in the legs, not the chest,” Nahas told MintPress.

The Israel Police placed a gag order on Anabtawi’s case to stop further reporting. Anabtawi’s family requested an autopsy be performed by their own representative. Yet Nahas said the autopsy’s results remain unknown as a result of the gag order.

A day after Anabtawi’s death, crowds waved Palestinian flags outside his family’s home in protest of the police killing.

In recent weeks, massive demonstrations have erupted across Palestinian communities inside Israel over police brutality against Palestinian citizens of Israel and law enforcement’s mishandling of violence stemming from organized crime.

Video footage from a February protest in Umm al-Fahm in northern Israel shows police officers using excessive force against participants. The severe use of tear gas and stun grenades by police resulted in a protester requiring head surgery.

In February, Ahmad Hejazi, a Palestinian citizen of Israel and a bystander, was fatally shot when police opened fire during a crime scene.

These actions have pushed human rights organizations such as Adalah (The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel) and Palestinian members of Israel’s parliament to charge that police officers view Palestinian citizens as enemies of the state.

“The killing of 33-year-old Munir Anabtawi is merely the continuation of the aggressive treatment practiced by the police toward Arab citizens,” Ayman Odeh — head of the Joint List, a coalition of Israel’s main Arab political parties — told the Times of Israel. “The police see Arab citizens as enemies, not equal citizens.”

According to the Mossawa Center, an advocacy organization for Palestinians in Israel, Israeli police have killed 62 Palestinian citizens of Israel, and 47 of those deaths can be attributed to racism. Suha Salman Mousa, Mossawa’s executive director, explained how this violence is rooted in racism.

Since 2000 we see that the chief of police, the police officers, and the whole system are dealing with Arab citizens of Israel in a different way. And this is part of the racism we suffer from. We suffer from racism in the form of police brutality, we suffer from racism in laws approved by the Knesset [Israeli parliament], and we suffer from racism with home demolitions. We suffer from racism in all aspects of life, and one of them is police brutality.”

Black Lives Matter, Palestinian Lives Matter

Last year, in the wake of the horrific police murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd and the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement, Palestine-Israel was having its own Palestinian Lives Matter movement.

On May 30, 2020, Israeli border police fatally shot Iyad Hallak, a Palestinian man with autism, in Jerusalem. The reason for the deadly firing? Officers suspected Hallak was armed. It was revealed after his death that he wasn’t carrying a weapon.

Palestinians and Israeli activists made a connection between Floyd and Hallak’s deaths. Floyd’s face was painted on the Apartheid Wall, the barrier separating the West Bank and Israel. Activists demonstrating against Hallak’s killing in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem held signs reading “Palestinian Lives Matter,” an obvious reference to the ongoing civil rights struggle in the U.S.

George Floyd mural
A mural depicting George Floyd on Israel’s apartheid wall in the Palestanian city of Bethlehem, April 9, 2021. Maya Alleruzzo | AP

Anabtawi’s killing brings back to mind Hallak’s. “[Anabtawi] could have been taken over without live fire, according to his sister,” Palestinian member of the Knesset Ahmad Tibi said. “The names Iyad Hallak and Mustafa Yunis Zel come up again. Very light hand on the trigger.”

Just as Black individuals are seen as suspects by American police, so are Palestinians by Israeli forces.

“Whenever the police see an Arab, he immediately becomes a target,” one of Hallak’s relatives, Hatem Awiwi, told Al-Monitor days after his death.

For Mousa, police violence in the U.S. and Israel-Palestine is the product of a shared pervasive issue: “If you compare it with Black Lives Matter and the police officers in the U.S., it’s racism. It’s almost the same.”

An American-Israeli police alliance

American police killed 1,127 people in 2020 — 28% of those killed were Black; the U.S. population is just over 12% Black.

On the other side of the world — in Palestine-Israel — the numbers tell a similar story. In 2019, 13 people are known to have been killed by the police, 11 of them were Palestinians and two others were of Ethiopian descent.

Despite the difference in statistics, an ongoing exchange of militant practices and abusive tactics entwines the two organizations together.

In 2002, the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) launched a law enforcement exchange between Israeli and American police forces. Its success birthed an official exchange program between the allies, under which every year hundreds of American police officers travel to Israel for training with military and police personnel. Thousands more participate in conferences and workshops led by Israeli officials in the U.S.

According to a 2018 report by Researching the American-Israeli Alliance (RAIA), while the exchanges are touted as an opportunity for American police to partner with a foreign ally and gain invaluable counter-terrorism experience, they actually reinforce discriminatory practices embedded in law enforcement. Specifically, these exchanges enhance strategies of surveillance, racial profiling, and forceful suppression of protests among American police officers. RAIA wrote:

Upon their return, U.S. law enforcement delegates implement practices learned from Israel’s use of invasive surveillance, blatant racial profiling, and repressive force against dissent. Rather than promoting security for all, these programs facilitate an exchange of methods in state violence and control that endanger[s] us all.”

Overall, this “Israelization” of the U.S. police leads to increased militarization of an already heavily militarized police force.

In Israel, citizens are obliged to spend two years in the army. The Anabtawi family’s lawyer said he would like to believe police officers coming from the IDF understand the difference between a citizen and an enemy. Alber Nahas explained:

When you are with the army, you are fighting the enemy. If you are fighting the enemy, it’s easier to shoot, to kill the enemy, but the police should not look at the Arab people, the citizens inside the country, as enemies. So, the government should better educate the police so this doesn’t happen.

Because the statistics are saying to us that there are more Arabs who were killed by policemen than non-Arabs. And this shouldn’t be accepted as a human being.”

Oil Prices Rise After Targeting Thirty of Shaaban Operation

Oil Prices Rise After Targeting Thirty of Shaaban Operation

News – Middle East: Oil prices rose, Monday, after the Yemeni Armed Forces announced the implementation of a large-scale military operation in the depths of Saudi Arabia, which targeted the facilities of the Saudi oil company “Aramco” in Jeddah and Jubail.

According to “RT” website, oil prices changed direction after the announcement of the operation, as they were in the red trading, in the morning.

According to Bloomberg data, US West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.22% to $ 59.45 a barrel, while Brent crude rose 0.38% to $ 63.19 a barrel.

The Yemeni armed forces announced, earlier, Monday, the implementation of the “Thirty of Shaaban” operation, in response to the escalation of US-Saudi aggression and its unjust siege.

Thirty of Shaaban Operation Hits Saudi Depth with 17 Drones, Ballistic Missiles

Thirty of Shaaban Operation Hits Saudi Depth with 17 Drones, Ballistic Missiles

News – Yemen: Yemeni Armed Forces announced, Monday, the implementation of the “Thirty of Shaaban” operation, which targeted the Saudi depth, in response to the escalation of the US-Saudi aggression and its unjust siege.

The Armed Forces spokesman, Brigadier General Yahya Sare’e, said in a statement that Thirty of Shaaban Operation was carried out by 17 drones and ballistic missiles.

He indicated that Aramco’s refineries in Jeddah and Jubail were hit with 10 Sammad-3-type drones, and sensitive military sites in Khamis Mushait and Jizan regions were also hit with 5 Qasif-2k-type drones and two Badr 1 ballistic missiles.

He pointed out that the operation lasted from yesterday evening until dawn today, Monday, and it has successfully achieved its objectives.

The Yemeni armed forces reiterated that their operations are continuing and escalating as long as the aggression and siege on our country continues.

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