Weekly report on israel’s terrorism on Palestinians (07 March – 13 March 2019)

PCHR Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (07 – 13 March 2019)

 

15 Mar  7:50 AM

Israeli forces continued with systematic crimes, in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), for the week of 07 – 13 March, 2019.

Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip. A Palestinian civilian was killed and 3 others, including a child, succumbed to their wounds. 150 civilians, including 43 children, four women, three journalists, and three paramedics, were wounded. The injury of four of them were reported serious. Three Palestinian civilians were killed; one of them was killed by the Israeli forces in the West Bank. Five Palestinian civilians sustained wounds in different incidents in the West Bank.

Shooting:

 

In the Gaza Strip, the Israeli forces continued to use lethal force against the participants in the peaceful protests organized along the Gaza Strip borders, which witnessed the peaceful protests for the 50th week along the eastern and northern border area of the Gaza Strip. They also continued to use force as well during the incursions into the West Bank.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian civilian and 3 other civilians, including a child, succumbed to their wounds. Moreover, 150 civilians, including 43 children, 4 women, 3 journalists, and 3 paramedics, were wounded while participating in the Return March. The injury of four of them was reported serious.  Furthermore, four Palestinian fishermen were wounded.  In the West Bank, the Israeli forces killed 3 Palestinian civilians; one of them was shot dead by the Israeli police. Moreover, five civilians were wounded in different shooting incidents in the West Bank.

 

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces killed Tamer Khaled Mustafa ‘Arafat (23) while participating in the Return and Breaking Siege March, east of al-Shawkah village, east of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip. Tamer was hit with a live bullet to the head at approximately 17:25, while he was around 150 meters away from the border fence, east of al-Shoka, east of Rafah. Tamer’s death was declared at approximately 18:40.

 

In the same context, three civilians, including a child, succumbed to wounds they sustained while participating in the Return and Breaking Siege March. On 07 March 2019, medical sources at al-Shifa Hospital in the Gaza City, declared the death of Saif al-Deen Abu Zaid (14), from al-Zaytoun neighborhood, after he succumbed to his wound he sustained. Saif was hit with a live bullet to the head when the Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel opened fire at Palestinian young men and children present in Malaka area, east of al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City.

 

On 11 March 2019, medical sources at the Gaza European Hospital in Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip, declared the death of Bassam Safi (22), from Khan Yunis Camp. Bassam succumbed to wounds he sustained after being hit with a tear gas canister at the head on 22 February 2019  while participating in the Return and Breaking Siege March in eastern Khuza’ah, east of the city.

 

On 11 March 2019, the medical sources at al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al-Balah, declared the death of Mussa Mohammed ‘Abd al-Karim Mussa (23), from Deir al-Balah, who succumbed to his wounds. On Friday, 01 March 2019, Mussa was hit with a live bullet to the abdomen while he was participating in the Great March of Return, east of al-Buraj in the central Gaza Strip. Mussa was taken to al-Aqsa Hospital, where he underwent a surgery and then admitted to the ICU until he succumbed to his wounds.

 

In excessive use of lethal force against the peaceful protesters in eastern Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 150 civilians, including 43 children, 4 women, 3 journalists, and 3 paramedics, while participating in the Return March. The injury of four of them was reported serious.

 

Injuries in the Gaza Strip from 28 February to 06 March 2019 According to the Governorate

 

Governorate Injuries
Total Children Women Journalists Paramedics Critical Injuries
Northern Gaza Strip 14 7 0 0 0 0
Gaza City 59 5 1 0 0 0
Central Gaza Strip 36 18 1 1 0 1
Khan Yunis 26 8 1 2 3 0
Rafah 15 5 1 0 0 3
Total 150 43 4 3 3 4

 

  • As part of targeting the Palestinian fishermen in the sea, the Israeli forces continued to escalate their attacks against the Palestinian fishermen, indicating the on-going Israeli policy to target their livelihoods. During the reporting period, PCHR documented 9 incidents were as follows: 7 incidents adjacent to al-Waha Resort, 1 incident adjacent off Dir al-Balah Shore, and  1 incident off Rafah Shore. The Israeli naval forces’ attacks on Palestinian fishing boats resulted in the arresting of 7 fishermen and the injury of 4 others, in addition to confiscating 2 fishing boats and damaging another one.

 

  • As part of targeting the border areas, on 07 March 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel, opened fire at Palestinian shepherds and agricultural lands, east of Deir al-Balah in the Central Gaza Strip. At approximately 14:00, the Israeli shooting recurred in the area.

 

  • On 09 March 2019, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands, east of al-Maghazi Camp in the Central Gaza Strip.

 

  • On 10 March 2019, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands, east of al-Shawkah village, east of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip. The Israeli shooting recurred at approximately 15:40 and no injuries were reported.

 

  • As part of airstrikes, on 09 March 2019, an Israeli drone fired one missile at a land, east of Gaza Valley village (Johr al-Dik), southeast of Gaza City, and no casualties or damage to property were reported.

 

  • On 10 March 2019, an Israeli drone fired two missiles at a seaport in the vicinity of a building belonging to the General Union of Fishing Workers in Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip. As a result, three fishing boats were damaged and three windows were broken in the building of the General Union of Fishing Workers, and no casualties were reported.

 

  • On the same day, an Israeli drone fired two missiles at a seaport in Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip. As a result, a building belonging to the General Union of Fishing Workers and a fishing boat sustained damage and no casualties were reported.

 

In the West Bank, in a new crime of excessive use of lethal force, Israeli police officers killed a Palestinian civilian, from Fassayel village, north of Jericho. “Yedioth Ahronoth” published that Israeli security sources said that a Palestinian civilian was driving his car and while passing through a police checkpoint, he passed a parked vehicle and refused to stop, so that the Israeli police officers opened fire and killed him. It should be noted that the Israeli forces could have used less lethal force against him, arrest him and reffer him to investigation.

 

In a new crime of excessive use of force, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian civilian while passing by al-Rajaby building, which the settlers took over several years ago, in al-Ras neighborhood, east of Hebron, and his corpse was taken to an unknown destination. He was killed under the pretext that he intended to carry out a stabbing attack, but PCHR’s investigations refuted those allegations.

 

In a similar crime, Israeli forces killed Mohammed Jamil ‘Abdel Fattah Shahin (24), from Salfit. Mohammed was killed when the Israeli forces moved into the village. Dozens of Palestinian young men gathered to confront the Israeli soldiers, who opened fire at the protestors.

 

In the same context, the Israeli forces wounded 5 Palestinian civilians in different shooting incidents in the West Bank.

 

  • Collective Punishment Policy:

 

  • As part of the collective punishment policy adopted by the Israeli forces against the Palestinian civilians accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli soldiers or/and settlers, on Thursday, 07 March 2019, the Israeli forces demolished a house belonging to the family of ‘Asem ‘Omer al-Barghouthi in Cooper village, north of Ramallah.It should be mentioned that the Israeli supreme court refused on 04 March 2019 the petition submitted by al-Barghouthi family against the house demolition decision. Thus, the court proved again its violation of the international humanitarian law and international human rights law and being one of Israel’s mechanisms to punish the Palestinian civilians and take revenge from innocents.  It is noteworthy that on 08 January 2019 the Israeli forces arrested ‘Asem al-Barghouthi and  accused him of shooting at Israel soldiers near “Givat Asaf” settlement outpost, north of Ramallah on 13 December 2018 and killing at the time 2 Israeli soldiers and seriously wounded 2 others.

 

Incursions:

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 82 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 10 other incursions into Jerusalem and its suburbs. During those incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 45 Palestinians, including 3 children and a woman, from the West Bank, while 43 other civilians, including 11 children and 7 women, were arrested from Jerusalem and its suburbs. Moreover, the Israeli forces mal-treated the families whose houses were stormed, in addition to confiscating their money. Among those arrestees was the PLC member, Mohamed Hasan Abu Tair (68).

 

 

Israeli authorities continued to create a Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.

  • As part of the Israeli house demolitions and notices, 08 March 2019, ‘Atallah ‘Eliwat self-demolished his house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to implement the Israeli Municipality decision. ‘Atallah said that the Israeli Municipality issued a decision to demolish the house, despite his attempts to license it and paying fines estimated at NIS 100.000. He added that on Friday evening, he self-demolished parts of his 80-sqaure-meter house built 8 years ago. It should be noted that the house sheltered 7 members, including 5 children.

 

  • On 09 March 2019, Elham Ja’abees self-demolished her house in al-Mokaber Mount area, southeast of occupied East Jerusalem, to impellent the Israeli Municipality decision. Elham’s brother ‘Ali said that the municipality notified his sister on 03 March 2019 to demolish her house under the pretext of non-licensing. He pointed out that she paid a lot of money as a fine building, but the municipality insisted to demolish it or the municipality will demolish the house and force her to pay the demolition costs, which is estimated at NIS 30.000. The mentioned house was built on an area of 130 square meters and sheltered 9 members, including 7 children.

 

  • On 12 March 2019, the Israeli authorities confiscated a caravan used as an agricultural facility in al-Walajah village, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem. The caravan belongs to Waleed Abi ‘Ali.

 

  • In the same context, 07 March 2019, the Israeli Municipality handed Ayman Rezeq Zarinah and his sons notices to demolish two residential buildings; one of them is under-construction, in Bir ‘Onah area, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem. The Israeli Municipality gave the family until 10 April 2019 to demolish the buildings or it will demolish them and force them to pay the demolition costs. Moreover, the Israeli forces handed Basema ‘Isaa, from Bir ‘Onah area, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem, a notice to demolish her an under-construction building comprised of 2 floors. She said that the Israeli forces raided her house and handed her husband Ibrahim ‘Abdullah ‘isaa a notice issued by the court to demolish their building on 01 April 2019. It should be noted that the Israeli authorities targeted the buildings of Bir ‘Onah area, which are located near al-Nafaq Road, in order to expand this road.

 

  • As part of seizing Palestinian civilians’ property in favor of settlement associations, on 11 March 2019, the Israeli Execution and Procedure Department handed the heirs of the late Maryam Abu Zowair a notice to evacuate their facility in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem in favor of El’ad” Settlement Association. The Israeli Court gave the family until the end of March to implement the eviction decision for the facility located in Wadi al-Helwa neighborhood. The facility is a house, where Elham Siyam and her four children live in, in addition to 1.5- dunum plot of land.  The sons of Monirah and Fatemah Siyam, the heirs of the late Zowair, are fighting from 22 years in the Israeli Courts to protect their facility, prove their ownership and refute the settlement association’s claims. The settlement association did all its efforts to seize the facility during the past years.

Israeli Forces continued their settlement activities, and the settlers continued their attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property

 

  • As part of house demolitions, on 07 March 2019, Israeli forces demolished an under-construction house belonging to Mosheer Suliman Mahmoud Saif, from the mentioned village. The house was comprised of 2 floors; the first one built on an area of 150 square meters while the second built on an area of 250 square meters. The demolition was carried out under the pretext of non-licensing in area classified as Area C, noting that the house built on the land classified as Area B, according to the Palestinian classification.

 

On the same day, Israeli forces moved into Kherab al-Sakinah in al-Masafer area in Yatta, south of Hebron, and confiscated 4 residential tents and 3 other tents used for breeding livestock in (al-Fakhit- al-Majaz- al-Dakikah) areas, under the pretext of building without a prior permission.

 

  • On 13 March 2019, Israeli forces demolished a 120-sqaure-meter barrack used for breeding livestock and a 12-sqaure-meter agricultural room attached to it. The barrack and agricultural room, which were built 2 years ago, belong to Basem Zait.

 

  • As part of levelling lands and uprooting trees, on 10 March 2019, Israeli forces leveled a 800-sqaure-meter plot of land, demolished stone chains and uprooted 80 trees. The trees were as follows: 40 olive trees, 3 almond trees and 10 grapes. The plot of land belongs to Khaled Mohamed Salman al-Samaheen.

 

  • On 12 March 2019, Kastro was surprised with cutting and damaging 30 olive trees planted in 12-dunum-plot of land. Kastro said that the Israeli settlers cut the trees 2 days ago. It should be noted that this is not the first time that Israeli settlers attack the plot of land, but this is the fifth time during the past 5 years.

 

  • As part of Israeli settlers’ attacks, Israeli settlers levelled 10 dunums in Jaloud village, southeast of Nablus. The dunums belong to the heirs of the late Ibrahim ‘Abed al-Haji Mohamed.

Use of Force against Demonstrations in Protest against the U.S. President’s Decision to Recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel:

 

Israeli forces continued its excessive use of lethal force against peaceful demonstration organized by Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and it was named as “The Great March of Return and Breaking Siege.” The demonstration was in protest against the U.S. President Donald Trump’s declaration to move the U.S. Embassy to it. According to PCHR fieldworkers’ observations, the border area witnessed large participation by Palestinian civilians as the Israeli forces continued to use upon highest military and political echelons excessive force against the peaceful demonstrators, though the demonstration were fully peaceful. The demonstration was as follows during the reporting period:

 

 

Gaza Strip:

 

In the 50th week of the Return and Breaking Siege the March activities, Israeli forces wounded 150 civilians, including 43 children, 4 women, 3 journalists and 3paramedics.  The injury of four of them was reported as serious. The incidents were as follows:

 

  • Gaza City: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of 59 civilians, including five children and a women. 30 of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel, 19 were directly hit with tear gas canisters and ten were hit with rubber bullets.

 

  • Northern Gaza Strip: the Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of 14 civilians, including seven children. Four of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel, eight were directly hit with tear gas canisters and two were hit with rubber bullets.
  • Central Gaza Strip: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued until 18:00, resulted in the injury of 36 civilians, including 18 children, a woman and a journalist. Twenty-three of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and 13 were directly hit with tear gas canisters. The injury of one of them was classified as serious. The wounded journalist identified as Hussain Jamal Mohammed Mansour (27), from al-Buraij Refugee Camp, was hit with shrapnel to his hands. Hussain works as a freelance journalist.

 

  • Khan Younis: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued until 18:00, resulted in the injury of 26 civilians, including eight children, a woman, three paramedics, and two journalists. Thirteen of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and 13 were directly hit with tear gas canisters. The wounded paramedics are:

 

  • ‘Ali Bahjat al-Qassas (36), a volunteer paramedic at the PRCS, who was hit with a tear gas canister to the face.
  • Ghaleb Samir Abu Khater (29), a volunteer paramedic at the PRCS, who was hit with a tear gas canister to the hand.
  • Mohammed Rajab Abu Jazar (21), a volunteer paramedic at PMRS, who was hit with a tear gas canister to the neck.

 

The two wounded journalists were identified as:

  • Yasser Mamdouh al-Qadi (32) who was hit with a live bullet to the right foot and works at Kan’an Agency.
  • Hussam Saleh Ahmed al-‘Adlony (30) who was hit with a tear gas canister to the left thigh and works as a freelance journalist.

 

 

  • Rafah: The Israeli shooting at the demonstrators, which continued from 14:00 until 17:00, resulted in the killing of Tamer Khaled Mustafa ‘Arafat (23) and the injury of 15 civilians, including five children and a woman. Nine of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and six were directly hit with tear gas canisters. The injury of three of them was classified as serious. Moreover, Tamer was hit with a live bullet to the head at approximately 17:25, while he was around 150 meters away from the border fence, east of al-Shoka, east of Rafah. Tamer’s death was declared at approximately 18:40.

 

  • Three civilians, including a child, succumbed to their wounds:

At approximately 00:40 on Thursday, 07 March 2019, the medical sources at al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City declared the death of Saif al-Din ‘Emad Nasser Abu Zaid (14), from al-Zaytoun neighborhood, who succumbed to his wound. It should be noted that at approximately 21:40 on Wednesday, 6 March 2019, Saif al-Din arrived at al-Shifa Hospital after being hit with a live bullet to the head when Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel fired live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at a group of Palestinian children and young men in Malaka area, east of al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City.

 

 

  • At approximately 03:50 on Monday, 11 March 2019, the medical sources at the European Gaza Hospital in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, declared the death of Bassam Sami ‘Othman Safi (22), form Khan Younis, who succumbed to his wound. According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 16:00 on Friday, 22 February 2019, Bassam was directly hit with a tear gas canister to the head while he was around 150-200 meters away from the border fence with Israel, southeast of Return Camp in Khuza’a, east of Khan Younis. Bassam was standing among a group of demonstrators doing nothing. He was then taken to a medical field point then to the European Gaza Hospital. Bassam was admitted to the ICU due to his serious health condition until he succumbed to his serious wound.

 

  • At approximately 10:30 on Monday, 11 March 2019, the medical sources at al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al-Balah, declared the death of Mussa Mohammed ‘Abd al-Karim Mussa (23), from Deir al-Balah, who succumbed to his wounds. On Friday, 01 March 2019, Mussa was hit with a live bullet to the abdomen while he was participating in the Great March of Return, east of al-Buraj in the central Gaza Strip. Mussa was taken to al-Aqsa Hospital, where he underwent a surgery and then admitted to the ICU until he succumbed to his wounds.

 

 

West Bank:

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, on 08 March 2019, dozens of Palestinian civilians headed to Beit Sira village’s entrance, west of Ramallah, and gathered near an Israeli military watchtower established in the area, calling for returning the bodies of Amir Daraj and Youssof ‘Enqawi, who were killed on 04 March 2019 by the Israeli forces in Kafur Ni’mah village, and their bodies were detained. After the demonstrators arrived at the area, the Israeli soldiers fired live and rubber bullets, tear gas canisters, and sound bombs at them. As a result, a 22-year-old civilian was hit with a rubber bullet to the head and then taken via a PRCS ambulance to the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive treatment.

 

  • Collective Punishment Policy:

 

  • As part of the collective punishment policy adopted by the Israeli forces against the Palestinian civilians accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli soldiers or/and settlers, on Thursday, 07 March 2019, the Israeli forces demolished a house belonging to the family of ‘Asem ‘Omer al-Barghouthi in Cooper village, north of Ramallah. According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 01:30 on the abovementioned day, Israeli forces backed by 20 military vehicles and armored personnel carriers in addition a Volvo military bulldozer moved into Cooper village, north of Ramallah.  The soldiers got off their vehicles and deployed in the center of the village and between the houses.  A number of them topped the roofs and closed the entrances leading to the vicinity of the family house belonging to detainee ‘Asem ‘Omer al-Barghouthi (33). Many Israeli soldiers then raided the abovementioned house to implement the demolition order which the family previously was informed of.  Dozens of Palestinian youngsters and young men then gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers deployed in the center of the village and set fire to tires.  The Israeli soldiers then in response heavily fired teargas canisters at them; as a result, many civilians suffered tear gas inhalation and fainted.  Meanwhile, the Israeli military bulldozer was demolishing the walls of the 2-storet house built on an area of 280 square meters.  At approximately 04:00, the Israeli forces completely demolished the house and later withdrew from the village. It should be mentioned that the Israeli supreme court refused on 04 March 2019 the petition submitted by al-Barghouthi family against the house demolition decision.  Thus, the court proved again its violation of the international humanitarian law and international human rights law and being one of Israel’s mechanisms to punish the Palestinian civilians and take revenge from innocents.  It is noteworthy that on 08 January 2019 the Israeli forces arrested ‘Asem al-Barghouthi by officers from the Yamam Unit, which is part of the Israeli “Mista’arvim” units and dressed like Palestinian civilians, when he was in Abu Shkeihdem village, north of Ramallah.  The Israeli authorities accused al-Barghuthi of shooting at Israel soldiers near “Givat Asaf” settlement outpost, north of Ramallah on 13 December 2018 and killing at the time 2 Israeli soldiers and seriously wounded 2 others.  Further, the Israeli authorities accused him of participating with his brother Saleh, who was assassinated by the Israeli soldiers on 12 December 2018, in a shooting incident near “‘Ofra” settlement, east of the city.

Closing Roads:

 

  • At approximately 09:00 on Monday, 11 March 2019, the Israeli authorities closed 6 dirt roads in the southern area of Hebron. The residents used these roads to access their houses and agricultural lands. The Israeli Civil Administration officer did not clarify the closure reasons. The closure included the following roads: the road connects between Ma’een village and Kherbit Sha’b al-Baten, southeast of Yatta; the sub-raod leading to Kherbit Wad Jehish, south of Yatta; the road of Khelet al-Mayiah leading to Yatta’ the road connects between Kherbit Ghowain and al-Kharabah area; the road leading to Kherbit Raffat, southwest of Samou’a; and the road leading to Kherbit Maqtal Musallam, south of Samou’a.

 

 

  • Efforts to Create A Jewish majority

 

Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it:

 

 

  • Arrests and Incursions:

 

  • At approximately 13:00, on Thursday, 07 March 2019, Israeli police raided al-Rahma Gate Mosque, east of al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City in occupied east Jerusalem, and took pictures for those who were there. In addition, eyewitnesses said that the Israeli police raided the mosque and took photos for the worshipers who were there, resulting in an altercation between both the Israeli police and the Palestinian worshipers. This tension came after the Israeli police sealed with chains the door on the top of the stairway leading to “al-Rahma Gate” building last month, outraging the worshipers who broke the door after performing their prayers near the mosque. The events continued to escalate as the worshipers were attacked and arrested in addition to denying them entry to al-Aqsa Mosque as well as attacking al-Aqsa guards. As a result, the worshipers, in cooperation with Islamic Endowment Department (Awqaf), were able to open the mosque, which has been closed for 16. After that, the Israeli police conducted a two-week arrest campaign targeting religious figures, activists, women, and children, who were able to break the steel gate and participated in opening al-Rahma Gate Mosque. Moreover, they denied more than 130 Palestinian civilians to enter al-Aqsa Mosque for period ranging from weeks to months.

 

  • On the same day evening, Israeli forces arrested seven Palestinian women and a man when they were on their way out of al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City in occupied East Jerusalem, taking them to al-Qashala police station in west Jerusalem to interrogate them. Lawyer Khaled Zabarqa said that Israeli police extended the women’s detention on charges of disturbing public order. The arrested women were identified as Nehad Mahajna, Islam Mahameed, Nour Mahameed, Montaha Emara, Samah Mahameed, Raeeda Sa’eed, and Sou’ad in addition to sheikh Nour al-Deen Ishaq al-Rajabe (57), who was released several hours after being arrested. Eyewitnesses said that the arrests were carried out at al-Asbat (Lion), Hata and al-Majles gates. That coincided with settlers raiding al-Rahma Cemetery, adjacent to al-Aqsa Mosque, performing their religious rituals and violating the sanctity of the graves by stepping over them. It should be mentioned that on the same day evening the settlers organized the monthly “Gates March”, in which they dance, sing and perform their rituals while raising the Israeli flags. The March started from al-Buraq Wall and passed by al-Aqsa gates. Moreover, eyewitnesses said that the Israeli police provided settlers full protection and closed the roads leading to al-Maghariba (Dung Gate).

 

  • At approximately 20:00, on Thursday, 07 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Qanater Khdeir neighborhood in the Old City in occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses from which they arrested ‘Abdul Rahman Taher al-Sharbati (14) and Ihab Sa’eb Taha (15), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 00:00, on Friday, 08 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into Al-Issawiya village, northeast of occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Fady ‘Ali Mohammad ‘Elayan (33) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination. It should be mentioned that ‘Elyan was one of al-Aqsa guards, who were denied access to al-Aqsa Mosque in last January for six months. Moreover, he was arrested several times and spent a whole year in Israeli jails.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, on Friday, 08 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into several neighborhoods in the Old City in occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses from which they arrested three civilians namely ‘Obada Sameer Yusuf Najeeb (20), Waheed Marwan Waheed al-Bakry (19) and Mahmoud ‘Abdullah Najeeb (21).

 

  • At approximately 14:00, on Friday, 08 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into Jabal al-Mukabir neighborhood, southeast occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses, from which they arrested three civilians namely ‘Amer Mahmoud Mash’al (33), Loai Mohammad Salama (27) and Hassan Yusuf Salama (45).

 

  • At approximately 09:00, on Sunday, 10 March 2019, ‘Omar Ramzy ‘Omar al-Za’neen (18) turned himself in to the Prison Service in al-Ramla to serve his eight-month sentence. Amjad Abu ‘Assab, Head of the Prisoners’ Families Committee in Jerusalem, said that al-Zaneen was arrested many times, denied access to his place of residence in the Old City in al-Ramla and stayed in house arrest for months. Furthermore, the Israeli court sentenced him to eight months of imprisonment, thus he turned himself in. It should be mentioned that al-Za’neen is the goalkeeper of Helal al-Quds Club and plays also for Palestine Junior National Team.

 

  • At approximately 19:00, on Sunday, 10 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Sa’dya village in the Old City in occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Nedal Abu Diab. Before they withdrew, they arrested his child Nassrallah (13), taking him to Moscovia Detention Center in west Jerusalem. It should be mentioned that the Israeli forces arrested the aforementioned civilian and released him few hours later under the condition of being under house arrest for three days. Later on the same day, they raided the house again and arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 22:00, on Monday, 11 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Sa’dia neighborhood in the Old City in occupied east Jerusalem. They raided a house belonging to Bahjat Mohammad ‘Ali al-Razem (26) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 01:00, on Tuesday, 12 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Tour neighborhood, east of occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmad ‘Abdullah Abu Ghannam (15) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, on Tuesday, 12 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Eizariya village, southeast of occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammad Hassan Mattar (40) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • Following the midday prayer, on Tuesday, 12 March 2019, Israeli authorities imposed a tightened siege on al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied east Jerusalem, closed the gates and completely evacuated it after the police station, which is located in the mosque, was set on fire. Eyewitnesses said that the fire was set to al-Asbat’s Gate Police Station following the midday prayer. Moreover, Israeli forces opened fire at the worshippers and completely locked down the vicinty of the police station. Furthermore, the Israeli forces backed by special forces, police and intelligence officers raided the mosque and closed its gates and then raided the Dome of the Rock and carried out arrests, which included children and women. The eyewitnesses added that the Israeli forces severely beat everyone at the mosque, including Islamic endowment “Awqaf” employees, worshippers, women, children, and young men and women, evacuated it and started searching the rooms and offices. Sheikh Wasif al-Bakri, acting chief justice of Jerusalem’s Islamic courts, said that the Israeli forces, upon the order of Jerusalem’s Police Chief, emptied the mosque of Islamic endowment “Awqaf” employees and worshippers. He also said that he along with a group of Islamic endowment “Awqaf” employees attempted to stay in the Dome of al-Nahawiyah, but the Israeli police raided it twice and threatened to get them out by force. PRCS reported that, during those events, their staff offered treatment for six persons injured after being beaten and sustained fractures. Five of them were taken to al-Makassed Hospital. Lawyers Mohammad Mahmoud and Rozan al-Jo’ba said that the Israeli forces arrested 17 civilians, including six children, and that they visited the arrestees in al-Qishla police station in Jerusalem’s Old City and Moscovia Detention Center in west Jerusalem. They added that the arrestees told them that they were hit against the wall and some of them were prevented from wearing their shoes at the moment they were arrested from al-Aqsa Mosque. Moroever some of them were hit on the head and suffocated. PCHR keeps the names of the arrestees.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, on Wednesday, 13 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-Issawiya, northeast of occupied east Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and then arrested four civilians, including a child. The arrested civilians were identified as Wassem Iyad Dari (17), Saleh Bader Abu ‘Assab (19), Majd ‘Ali ‘Ata (20), and Khaled ‘Awny Abu Gosh (19).

 

Notices and House Demolitions:

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on Thursday, 07 March 2019, the Israeli Municipality handed Ayman Rezeq Zarinah and his sons notices to demolish two residential buildings; one of them is under-construction, in Bir ‘Onah area, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem. The Israeli Municipality gave the family until 10 April 2019 to demolish the buildings or it will demolish them and force them to pay the demolition costs. Waleed Zarinah said that the Israeli authorities handed him a notice issued by the court to demolish a building belonging to his brother Ayman and his sons Rezeq, Mohamed and Salah, or the municipality will demolish it and force him to pay the demotion costs, in addition to confiscating NIS 230.000, which the family was forced to pay as a bail to release Ayman who refused to sign the demolition notice. Ayman’s building is comprised of two floors, including four apartments. Waleed added that the Israeli Court, which belongs to the Ministry of the Interior, detained Ayman after he refused to sign the self-demolition notice, so the family was forced to pay the mentioned money as a bail to release him and implement the demolition by himself before the specified date. Waleed pointed out that the family appoint an Israeli lawyer a year ago after the Israeli authorities threatened to demolish the mentioned building and paid a lot of money to him, but the court decided to demolish the building. He added that the Israeli authorities threatened the family to demolish the rest of the house, which belongs to his borthers Khaled and Ried.

 

  • In the same context, the Israeli forces handed Basema ‘Isaa, from Bir ‘Onah area, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem, a notice to demolish her an under-construction building comprised of 2 floors. She said that the Israeli forces raided her house and handed her husband Ibrahim ‘Abdullah ‘isaa a notice issued by the court to demolish their building on 01 April 2019. It should be noted that the Israeli authorities targeted the buildings of Bir ‘Onah area, which are located near al-Nafaq Road, in order to expand this road.

 

 

  • At approximately 15:00 on Friday, 08 March 2019, ‘Atallah ‘Eliwat self-demolished his house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to implement the Israeli Municipality decision. ‘Atallah said that the Israeli Municipality issued a decision to demolish the house, despite his attempts to license it and paying fines estimated at NIS 100.000. He added that on Friday evening, he self-demolished parts of his 80-sqaure-meter house built 8 years ago. It should be noted that the house sheltered 7 members, including 5 children.

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Saturday, 09 March 2019, Elham Ja’abees self-demolished her house in al-Mokaber Mount area, southeast of occupied East Jerusalem, to impellent the Israeli Municipality decision. Elham’s brother ‘Ali said that the municipality notified his sister on 03 March 2019 to demolish her house under the pretext of non-licensing. He pointed out that she paid a lot of money as a fine building, but the municipality insisted to demolish it or the municipality will demolish the house and force her to pay the demolition costs, which is estimated at NIS 30.000. The mentioned house was built on an area of 130 square meters. It should be noted that the Israeli Municipality forced around 7 civilians, from Jerusalem, to self-demolish their shops in late February, under the pretext of non-licensing.

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on Tuesday, 12 March 2019, the Israeli authorities confiscated a caravan used as an agricultural facility in al-Walajah village, southwest of occupied East Jerusalem. Eyewitnesses said that the Israeli forces moved into the entrance to al-Walajah village and then seized a caravan without a prior warning. The caravan belongs to Waleed Abi ‘Ali.

 

  • Seizing Palestinian Civilians’ Property in Favor of Settlement Association:

 

  • On Monday, 11 March 2019, the Israeli Execution and Procedure Department handed the heirs of the late Maryam Abu Zowair a notice to evacuate their facility in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem in favor of El’ad” Settlement Association. According to PCHR’s investigations, the Israeli Court gave the family until the end of March to implement the eviction decision for the facility located in Wadi al-Helwa neighborhood. The facility is a house, where Elham Siyam and her four children live in, in addition to 1.5- dunum plot of land. The Israeli authorities’ decisions came before looking for the land’s ownership in the Israeli Supreme Court, which emphasizes that the land, where the house is established, belonging to the late Jameel Siyam not to the late Zowair. Mahmoud Khalil, from Chicago, in collaboration with a broker forged the documents to facilitate the transferring of the facility to the association. The sons of Monirah and Fatemah Siyam, the heirs of the late Zowair, are fighting from 22 years in the Israeli Courts to protect their facility, prove their ownership and refute the settlement association’s claims. The settlement association did all its efforts to seize the facility during the past years.

 

Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property

 

 

Israeli forces’ attacks:

  • At approximately 06:20 on Thursday, 07 March 2019, Israeli forces backed by military vehicles and accompanied with 3 bulldozers moved into al-Mas’oudiyia area in Burqah village, northwest of Nablus. The bulldozers demolished an under-construction house belonging to Mosheer Suliman Mahmoud Saif, from the mentioned village. The house was comprised of 2 floors; the first one built on an area of 150 square meters while the second built on an area of 250 square meters. The demolition was carried out under the pretext of non-licensing in area classified as Area C, noting that the house built on the land classified as Area B, according to the Palestinian classification. Saif said that he did not receive demolition notice, but he received a notice to stop construction work and granted a chance to refer to the competent bodies in the Israeli Civil Administration. Following that, he headed to the al-Quds Center for legal aid and human rights in order to follow-up his case, but no any court session held to consider the case.

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Thursday, Israeli forces backed by military vehicles and accompanied with a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration moved into Kherab al-Sakinah in al-Masafer area in Yatta, south of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officers confiscated 4 residential tents and 3 other tents used for breeding livestock in (al-Fakhit- al-Majaz- al-Dakikah) areas, under the pretext of building without a prior permission. The confiscation was carried out without a prior permission or handing decisions to stop construction works or demolition notices. The confiscated tents belong to:
    • Isma’il Ibrahim al-‘Adrah (a 40-sqaure-meter tent in Kherbet al-Fakhith).
    • ‘Isaa Mohamed Abu ‘Arram (a 40-square-meter tent and a 50-square-meter tent used for breeding livestock(.
    • Mohamed ‘Eliyan ‘Awad (2 residential tents built on an area of 40 square meters and 2 other tents built on an area of 60 square meters and used as barns.)

 

  • On Thursday, the Israeli authorities notified the owners of 4 agricultural dwellings in Shoshhalah area in al-Khadir village, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. The notified persons were identified as Mahmoud Salah, Monther Salah, Mousa Ahmed Salah, and Habbas Khalil Salah. The head of the office of the Wall and Settlement Resistance Committee in Bethlehem, Hassan Brejiya, said that the houses’ owners recently restored their houses in order to confront the Israeli forces’ plans aim at seizing the land in favor of settlement projects. He pointed out that the Israeli forces raided al-Rashidah village, southeast of the city and confiscated a truck carrying construction materials. They also handed the village residents notices to evacuate their lands under the pretext of being military areas.

 

  • On Friday, 08 March 2019, Israeli forces attacked the Agricultural Relief Society in Nahaleen village, west of Bethlehem, and forced the workers to stop working in the project. Ziyad Salah, the coordinator of the Agricultural Relief Society, said that the Israeli forces forced the workers to stop working in the project and confiscated the tools using in implementing the project of agricultural roads. The project, which is implemented by the Agricultural Relief Society, aims at serving the Palestinian farmers. Ziyad also said that the Israeli forces arrived at the area, stopped the work and then confiscated the tools by loading them on military vehicles. He pointed out that this project is implemented in cooperation with Nahaleen’s municipality.

 

  • At approximately 09:30 on Sunday, 10 March 2019, Israeli forces backed by military vehicles and accompanied with a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration, a bulldozer and a digger moved into Abu Sdodah Mount, north of al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. The Israeli vehicle leveled a 800-sqaure-meter plot of land, demolished stone chains and uprooted 80 trees. The trees were as follows: 40 olive trees, 3 almond trees and 10 grapes. The plot of land belongs to Khaled Mohamed Salman al-Samaheen.

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Sunday, Israeli forces backed by military vehicles and accompanied with a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration and a mounted-crane truck moved into the western area of Samou’a village, south of Hebron. The Israeli soldiers deployed between houses and the Israeli Civil Administration officer handed Ya’qoub Mostafa Abu ‘Oqail a notice to stop construction works in his an under-construction house built on an area of 80 square meters. The Israeli Civil Administration officers confiscated 8 pallets built of bricks where in the vicinity of the house. The confiscation and stop working came under the pretext of non-licensing in area classified as Area C, according to Oslo agreement.

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Tuesday, 12 March 2019, according to the security coordination previously declared by the Palestinian Liaison that allows Palestinians enter their lands in Bureen village, south of Nablus, Kastro Rezeq Mahmoud Qadous headed to a plot of land belonging to the heirs of the late Nimer Jaber, where he works. When he arrived at the land, he was surprised with cutting and damaging 30 olive trees planted in 12-dunum-plot of land. Kastro said that the Israeli settlers cut the trees 2 days ago. It should be noted that this is not the first time that Israeli settlers attack the plot of land, but this is the fifth time during the past 5 years.

 

  • On Wednesday, 13 March 2019, Israeli forces backed by military vehicles and accompanied with a bulldozer moved into Wadi al-Makhrour area, west of Beit Jalah, west of Bethlehem. The Israeli bulldozers demolished a 120-sqaure-meter barrack used for breeding livestock and a 12-sqaure-meter agricultural room attached to it. The barrack and agricultural room, which were built 2 years ago, belong to Basem Zait.

 

 

Israeli settlers’ attacks:

 

  • On Saturday, 09 March 2019, the residents of Jaloud village, southeast of Nablus, were surprised with leveling agricultural lands in Khelet Sahal Abu Shabraqah by Israeli settlers, from “Ahiya” settlement and “Ayish Kodesh” settlement outpost, east of Jaloud village. The agricultural lands belong to the heirs of the late Ibrahim ‘Abed al-Hajj Mohamed. The levelled land were around 10 dumuns. It should be noted that Palestinain farmers are only allowed to enter their lands for plowing them after getting a prior permission from the Israeli forces.

 

  • At approximately 23:00 on Sunday, 10 March 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “ Shafi Shamroun” settlement, west of Nablus, carried out riots in the square of Dir Sharaf village, west of the city. They also threw stones at Palestinian civilians and their vehicles and shops, but no injuries among them or damages were reported.

 

  • Recommendations to the International Community

 

PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 11 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.

  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC this year to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area.

Fully detailed document available at the official website of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR).

Faces of Gazan Children Killed by israeli (apartheid state) Soldiers Appear in Tel Aviv

Faces of Gazan Children Killed by Israeli Soldiers Appear in Tel Aviv

By Haim Schwarczenberg,

Thursday March 7th 2018 Tel Aviv- Jews for Return, hung pictures of six of the children who were shot dead by Israeli soldiers while participating in the return demonstrations that began on the 30th of March 2018 on the streets of Tel Aviv.

Israeli security forces killed 266 participants in the Great March of Return since Refugees for Gaza began protesting last march. This staggering number includes 42 children. Israeli forces killed seven children who participated in the protests since the beginning of 2018.

Santiago Canton, the Chairman of the international investigation that was launched by the United Nations determined last week that there are: “established facts that indicate that the Israeli security forces, committed serious violations of human rights and International Humanitarian Law.”

Sarah Hussein, a member of the special committee, declared that, “the shooting was deliberately aimed at children, people with disabilities, and journalists. Most of the demonstrators were not involved in any form of violence.”

An Israeli sniper killed 15 Year old Saif Adin Zaid from Gaza on Wednesday the 6th of March after the conclusions of the committee were made public.

Posters were hung of: Ahmad Abu ‘Abed, 4, from Gaza; Shot in his father’s arms. Abdel Raouf Salha, age 14, a refugee from Majdal; Hassan Shalabi, age 14, a refugee from Isdod Yosef Aldia, 14, a refugee from Yafa; Hassan Nofal 17 years old a refugee from Yafa; Hamza Ishtawi, 17, from a refugee from Aljia The six children were shot in the past three months without endangering anyone.

The Jewish Israeli, Anti Zionist, activists responded to a call from Gazan organisations who, hoped that the faces of the children killed would awaken the Israeli conscience. The reactions of the passersby were mixed, some expressed shock at the deaths of innocent children, and some slashed the children’s pictures erasing most of their faces and the text describing who they are.

“We are bringing the posters of the faces of the children killed by Israeli soldiers to the streets of Tel aviv to show Israelis the crimes committed in their name in Gaza. The fact that some of the pedestrians erased the children faces is a reflection of the ongoing attempt by Zionist society to erase the existence of Palestinians since 1948.” stated a spokesperson for Jews for Return.

Pictures of Gazan children killed by Israeli soldiers were pasted below the home of Ehud Barak in Tel Aviv.

Pictures of Gazan children killed by Israeli soldiers pasted around the Military base “Hakirya” and the Ministry of Defence in Tel Aviv

An hour after the posters of the Gazan children killed by Israeli soldiers were hung by activists under the home of Ehud Barak they were slashed by pedestrians who tried to erase the children’s faces and identities.

 

Church Affairs Committee condemns acquittal of israelis (jewish terrorists) torching Jerusalem church

Church Affairs Committee condemns acquittal of Israelis torching Jerusalem church

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — The Higher Presidential Committee for Church Affairs in Palestine condemned the decision of an Israeli court to acquit two Israeli settlers, for torching Jerusalem’s Dormition Abbey in February 2016, on the basis of “insufficient evidence,” on Tuesday.

The committee said in a press release that the Israeli court’s decision is a “deviation from justice, even in the courts, when it comes to convicting Jews while arresting young Palestinians without charge or evidence or trials and for long periods of times that can reach dozens of years.”

The committee added that these racist and subversive actions by extremist Israelis under the protection of the courts and the Israeli government will lead to the creation of future Israeli generations molded with ideas and actions hostile toward the Palestinians.
One of the Israeli settlers, Yinon Reuveni, 23, was also accused of arson of the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes at Tabgha, on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, in June 2015

israeli (apartheid state) Soldiers Who Beat Detained Palestinians Are Part of a Bigger Evil

Israeli Soldiers Who Beat Detained Palestinians Are Part of a Bigger Evil

Most moral army in the world? Keep tripping

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism on Palestinians (28 February – 06 March)

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (28 February- 06 March 2019)

https://pchrgaza.org/en/?p=12096

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

(28 February- 06 March 2019)

 

  • Israeli forces kill two Palestinian civilians and wound another one, west of Ramallah.

 

  • Five civilians, including three children, were wounded in different incidents in the West Bank.

 

  • Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against the peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip.
  • 92 civilians, including 26 children, two women, a journalist, and three paramedics, were wounded. The injury of three of them were reported serious.

 

  • Israeli forces conducted 67 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 4 other incursions into Jerusalem.
  • 43 Palestinian civilians, including three children and a woman, were arrested in the West Bank.
  • 11 of them were arrested from occupied Jerusalem.
  • Israeli forces conducted a limited incursion in the Gaza Strip and arrested 2 civilians, who attempted to sneak into Israel.

 

  • Shooting incidents were reported against Palestinian farmers and shepherds in the border areas of the Gaza Strip and no injuries were reported.

 

  • Israeli authorities continued to create a Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.
  • The Israeli Municipality forced a Palestinian civilian to self-demolish his house in Silwan village.
  • Israeli settlers seized a house in the Old City.

 

  • Israeli authorities continued their settlement activities in the West Bank.
  • Israeli forces confiscated a bulldozer while cleaning rubbles on the main street.
  • Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian civilians’ houses and ‘Oreef Secondary School, south of Nablus.

 

  • 3 shooting incidents were reported against the fishing boats in the Gaza Strip Sea.

 

  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 13th consecutive year.
  • Israeli forces established 92 permanent checkpoints and 95 temporary checkpoints in the West Bank.

 Summary

 

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (28 February – 06 March 2019).

 

Shooting:

 

In the Gaza Strip, the Israeli forces continued to use lethal force against the participants in the peaceful protests organized along the Gaza Strip borders, which witnessed the peaceful protests for the 49th week along the eastern and northern border area of the Gaza Strip. They also continued to use force as well during the incursions into the West Bank.

In the West Bank, the Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinian civilians and wounded 6 others, including 3 children.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 92 civilians, including 26 children, 2 women, a journalist, and 3 paramedics, while participating in the Return March. The injury of three of them was reported serious.

In the West Bank, in new crime of excessive use of force, at early dawn hours Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinian civilians and wounded another one in Kaffur Ni’ma village, west of Ramallah.  The Israeli forces claimed that the three civilians carried out a run-over attack, which resulted in the injury of two Israeli soldiers. Other Israeli soldiers opened fire at them, killed two of them and wounded another one. Investigations and eyewitnesses’ statements refute the Israeli forces’ claims. The eyewitnesses said that the three civilians were heading to their work at a bakery, where they should be at early hours. While the civilians were on their way to work, they were surprised with Israeli vehicles and crashed one of them. As a result, the civilians’ car hood was damaged.

In the same context, Israeli forces wounded five civilians, including three children, during the Israeli forces’ incursion into Nablus. Palestinian young men and children gathered to confront the Israeli forces.

In the Gaza Strip, using excessive lethal force against the peaceful protesters in eastern Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 92 civilians, including 26 children, 2 women, a journalist, and 3 paramedics, while participating in the Return March. The injury of three of them was reported serious.

Injuries in the Gaza Strip from 28 February to 06 March 2019 According to the Governorate

 

Governorate Injuries
Total Children Women Journalists Paramedics Critical Injuries
Northern Gaza Strip 12 6 0 0 0 0
Gaza City 28 4 0 1 0 0
Central Gaza Strip 18 6 0 0 0 1
Khan Yunis 17 6 1 0 2 1
Rafah 17 4 1 0 1 1
Total 92 26 2 1 3 3

 

  • As part of targeting the Palestinian fishermen in the sea, the Israeli forces continued to escalate their attacks against the Palestinian fishermen, indicating the on-going Israeli policy to target their livelihoods. During the reporting period, PCHR documented 3n incidents were as follows: 2 incidents adjacent to al-Waha Resort and 1 incident off Rafah Shore, north and south of the Gaza Strip.

 

  • As part of targeting the border areas, on 28 February 2019, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel, opened fire at agricultural lands and shepherds, east Dir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip. At approximately 11:30, the Israeli shooting recurred.

 

  • On 02 March 2019, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel, opened fire at agricultural lands in the eastern ‘Abasan al-Saghira, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. The Israeli shooting recurred on 04 March 2019. As a result, the farmers and shepherds were forced to leave for fear of their lives and no casualties were reported.

 

Incursions:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 67 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 4 other incursions into Jerusalem and its suburbs. During those incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 32 Palestinians, including 3 children and a woman, from the West Bank, while 11 other civilians were arrested from Jerusalem and its suburbs.

In the Gaza Strip, on 24 February 2019, Israeli forces moved around 100 meters into the west of the border fence with Israeli, east of al-Buriej Camp in the center of the Gaza Strip. The Israeli vehicles levelled and combed lands, headed to the south and then arrived at eastern Khan Yunis before redeploying along the border fence.

Israeli authorities continued to create a Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.

As part of the Israeli house demolitions and notices, on 02 March 2019, Husam al-‘Abasi self-demolished his house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to implement the Israeli Municipality decision under the pretext of non-licensing.  He said that the Israeli Municipality issued a decision to self-demolish his house in Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood in Silwan village and ordered him to demolish it or the Israeli vehicles will implement the demolition during 2 weeks. He added that that Municipality informed him that if he does not demolish the house, he will pay the demolition cost, which is estimated at NIS 80,000.  He also said that he built a 70-sqaure-meter storey above his family house a year ago, where he along with his wife and their child live in.

 

As part of seizing Palestinian civilians’ property in favor of settlement associations, Israeli settlers seized a building in ‘Aqabet Darwish in Jerusalem’s Old City. Eyewitnesses said that a group of Israeli settlers raided a house belonging to al-Halabi family while they were outside the house. The Israeli settlers closed the house with locks and then started to install cameras and put wires on the building’s walls and roof. It should be noted that the building belongs to Jerusalemite families. Around 60% of the building was given to the Israeli settlers while al-Halabi family managed to maintain the other 40% (100 square meters). Two of Jawdat al-Halabi’s heirs live in the building.

 

In the same context, the Israeli authorities issued judicial notices against Maragha family, claiming their plot of land, where a building was established in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. Wadi al-Helwa Information Center said that “Ateret Cohanim” Settlement Association handed Maragha family judicial notices for 9 of the family members, claiming their plot of land, where a building was established in Baten al-Hawa neighborhood in the village. The building is comprised of 5 apartments and a parking. The building shelters 15 members.

 

Israeli Forces continued their settlement activities, and the settlers continued their attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property

 

  • On 05 March 2019, Israeli forces confiscated a bulldozer belonging to the Israeli Ma’is Company. The bulldozer was cleaning rubbles on the main street near Doma village, southeast of Nablus. The bulldozer was taken to “Taffouh” settlement near Za’tarah checkpoint, south of Nablus.

 

  • As part of the Israeli settlers’ attacks against the Palestinians civilians and their property, on 05 March 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Yatizhar” settlement established in the northern side of ‘Oreef village’s lands, south of Nablus. The settlers raided Palestinian civilians’ houses and ‘Oreef Secondary School, under the Israeli forces’ protection. As a result, some windows belonging to Moneer Suliman al-Nori’s house were broken.

Details

 

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

 

Thursday, 28 February 2019:

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Asira al-Shamaliya village, north of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses, from which they arrested ‘Oqba Fayez Barham Shawaly (42) and Mohammad ‘Emad Fahmy Sawalma (22), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Qalqilya and stationed in Kfar Saba neighborhood, west of the city. They raided and searched a house belonging to ‘Othman Rebhy ‘Othman Lebdah (31) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Tall village, southwest of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses, from which they arrested ‘Abdul Rahman Mohammad Sameer Zaidan (29) and Yusuf Mohammad Yusuf Ramadan (20) and then arrested them, taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 07:30, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel, east of Deir al-Balah, opened fire at Palestinian shepherds. At approximately 11:30, the Israeli shooting recurred. As a result, the shepherds fled for fear of their lives and no casualties were reported.

 

  • At approximately 08:30, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel, east Deir al-Balah, opened fire at agricultural lands. At approximately 11:30, the Israeli shooting recurred. As a result, the farmers fled for fear of their lives and no casualties were reported.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Beit Ummar and Tarqumiyah in Hebron, Qalqilya and Kifl Haris and Deir Istiya villages in Salfit.

 

Friday, 01 March 2019:

 

  • At approximately 18:00, Israeli forces moved into Nablus from its eastern side and stationed in the vicinity of al-Maslakh area. A number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at the Israeli vehicles. The Israeli forces immediately fired tear gas canisters, sound bombs and rubber bullets at them. As a result, dozens of the Palestinian young men suffered tear gas inhalation and were treated on the spot. Moreover, two civilians, including a child, were hit with rubber bullets and were then taken to Rafidia Surgical Hospital to receive treatment.

 

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Sa’ir and Surif villages in Hebron; Haris and Kafr al-Deek in Salfit; and Artah village, west of Tulkarm.

 

Saturday, 02 March 2019:

 

  • At approximately 08:00, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel, opened fire at agricultural lands in the eastern ‘Abasan al-Saghira, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. As a result, the farmers fled for fear of their lives and no casualties were reported.


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Massafer Yatta and al-Tuwani villages in Hebron; and ‘Azzun Atma in Qalqilya

 

Sunday, 03 March 2019

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested ‘Abudllah Ahamd Moussa (16) and Mohammad As’ad Nassem Esbeeh (16), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Taqou’a village, southeast of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses, from which they arrested Mohiy al-Deen Ahmad al-‘Amour (17), taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Fara’ata village, east of Qalqilya. They raided and searched a house belonging to Baraa Nathem Mohammad Salman (28) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into ‘Azzoun village, east of Qalqilya. They raided and searched a house belonging to ‘Adel Zaher Hamdallah Hussein (20) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Qalqilya. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammad Hassan Ahmad Moussa (32) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 07:30, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israeli opened fire at agriculture lands, east of Abasan al-Kabira, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. As a result, the farmers fled for fear of their lives and no injuries were reported.

 

  • At approximately 08:00, the Israeli authorities closed the checkpoint established at the southern entrance to al-Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron’s Old City and prevented civilians from passing to the Old City through the checkpoint. As a result, students could not reach their schools near the checkpoint. As a result, the students were forced to use another road in order to arrive at the al-Ibrahimi Mosque area. The settlers brought tents and platforms and set them up on the closed al-Shuhada Street and surrounding al-Ibrahimi Mosque to hold their celebrations.

 

  • At approximately 16:15, Israeli forces moved into Nablus from its eastern side and stationed in the vicinity of al-Maslakh area. A number of Palestinian civilians gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli vehicles. The Israeli forces immediately fired tear gas canisters, sound bombs and rubber bullets at them. As a result, a 15-year-old child was hit with a rubber bullet to the left brow. He was then taken to Rafidia Surgical Hospital in Nablus to receive treatment.

 

  • At approximately 17:30, Israeli gunboats stationed in the sea, south of Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within three nautical miles and chased them. As a result, they fled for fear of their lives and no causalities were reported.

 

  • At approximately 19:30, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel arrested two Palestinian young men, who tried to sneak into Israel, east of Gaza. The two young men were identified as Maissara Hamdy ‘Elaian Baroud (21) and Samy Ghazy Mohammad al-Hawajry (21), form Nuseirat Refugee Camp in the central Gaza Strip. Hamdy Baroud (53), Massara’s father, said that at approximately 18:00 on Sunday, 03 March 2019, I called my son Maissara, but his cell phone was closed. I then asked their friends about him and they told me that he and his friend Samy al-Hawajry went to the border fence and were arrested. At approximately 10:30, on Monday, 04 March 2019, my son ‘Alaa received a phone call from a private number. The caller, who identified himself as an Israeli police officer, said that Maissara is in their custody and ended the call.

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (7) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: al-Dhahiriya, Bani Na’im, Beit ‘Ummar and al-Moreq in Hebron; Qalqilya and ‘Azzun and Jayyous villages, east of Qalqilya.

 

Monday, 25 February 2019

  • In new crime of excessive use of force, at early dawn hours Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinian civilians and wounded another one in Kaffur Ni’ma village, west of Ramallah. The Israeli forces claimed that the three civilians carried out a run-over attack, which resulted in the injury of two Israeli soldiers. Other Israeli soldiers opened fire at them, killed two of them and wounded another one. Investigations and eyewitnesses’ statements refute the Israeli forces’ claims. The eyewitnesses said that the three civilians were heading to their work at a bakery, where they should be at early hours. While the civilians were on their way to work, they were surprised with Israeli vehicles and crashed one of them. As a result, the civilians’ car hood was damaged. According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 02:30 on Monday, Israeli forces backed by three military vehicles moved into Kafur Nie’mah village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yousef Mahmoud al-Deek (42) and arrested him, taking him at the village entrance, where the Israeli vehicles stationed. One of the Israeli vehicles was damaged before their withdrawal from the village. At approximately 03:20, the three civilians were heading to their work via a car with an Israeli registration plate, meanwhile, the diver was surprised with Israeli vehicles at the village’s entrance. As a result, the driver could not control the car and crashed one of the Israeli vehicles. The Israeli soldiers immediately opened fire at the civilians, killed two of them and wounded another one. The wounded civilian was arrested while the victims’ bodies were kept in the Israeli custody. The two victims were identified as Ameer Mahmoud Darraj (20), from Khebitha al-Mosbbah village, and Yousef Raied Anqawi (20), from Beit Sirah village. The wounded civilian was identified as Hitham Basem ‘Alqam (20), from Safa village, west of Ramallah.

Majed Abu Rahma, an eyewitness, said to PCHR’s fieldworker:

“I was heading to my work at Itihad Juice Company, which is located at the entrance to Kafur Nie’mah village. I passed through the city center and I did not notice any suspicious movements. It was approximately 03:00 and the weather was rainy and foggy. When I was on the village’s road, the vision was clear, as there were lights on the road, but when I exited it and moved towards the company, the road was sloppy and there was no lights. When I was around 150 away from the company, I was surprised with Israeli soldiers deploying on the road. I recognized that they were Israeli soldiers as one of them lighted military torches at me. I was driving at approximately 30 km/h and I was around 6-10 meters away from them. One of them stopped me and said in Arabic, ‘get away from here, one of our vehicles is damaged.’ I moved back, I was around 150 meters away from them, and it was approximately 03:20. I saw a car driving at approximately 60-70 km/h coming from the village and moving in the same direction. They lighted the military torches at it. The car then deviated from its path and hit the Israeli military vehicle that was blocking the road. I heard the crash and minutes after, I heard continuous shooting and I estimate that 15-20 bullets were fired.”

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Beit Rima village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Huda al-Rimawi (45) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Jalzon Refugee Camp, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mojahed Saleh al-Shani (26) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Kahil village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Hamza Zhour (44). The Israeli forces later withdrew and no arrests among Palestinian civilians were reported.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Eskaka village, east of Salfit. They raided and searched a house belonging to a former prisoner, Zuhair Fawaz ‘Abdullah Hussain “al-Inboussi” (35), and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 04:40, Israeli forces moved into Selwad village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched two house belonging to Lo’ai Nouh Hamed (19) and Ramez ‘Adb al-Khaleq Hamed (23) and then arrested them, taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into ‘Obween village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ferass Moussa Sahwil (22) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 07:30, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha shore, northwest of Beit Lahia in the Northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within four nautical miles and chased them. The shooting caused fear and panic among fishermen. As a result, the fishermen fled for fear of their lives and no casualties or damages to the boats were reported.

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (03) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Yatta village in Hebron and Hawarah village in Nablus.

Tuesday, 26 February 2019

  • At approximately 00:40, Israeli forces moved into the northern ‘Assir village, north of Nablus and stationed in al-Marj neighborhood area, east of the village. They raided a 4-storey house belonging to Zaher Saleh Sholy (56). It should be noted that Zaher lives in the house along with his sons and their families. The Israeli forces locked the house’s residents on the first and second floor while other soldiers searched the house. Half an hour later while the Israeli soldiers were on the second floor, where Zaher’s son , Habib ( 27) and his wife live, Habib asked an Israeli soldier to allow his wife enter her room and bring some belongings. The soldier allowed Amna along with her mother to enter the room. After Amna and her mother came out of the room, the soldiers ordered to search them and brought a female soldier to do it. Before the Israeli soldiers withdrew, they confiscated NIS 3787 and 335 JD and handed the family a warrant of the confiscated money signed by ‘A’esha, Habib’s mother.

 

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Dhaisha Refugee Camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested Ahmed Ass’ad al-Saify (20) and ‘Odai Mustafa Abu Nassar (24), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested Ra’ed Hassan Moussa (18), taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into Ramallah and stationed in al-Tira neighborhood. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested 3 civilians, including a woman. The arrested civilians were identified as Amal al-Tahan Barghouth (26), ‘Obada Mahmoud al-Dirawi (30) and Khaled Sliman Barghouthi (33). It should be noted that Amal al-Tahan is the wife of lawyer Tariq Barghoth, who was arrested on 27 February 2019, from his house in Ramallah. Tariq is still detained in al-Maskoubia investigation center in West Jerusalem and prevented from meeting his lawyer.

 

  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli forces moved into Jenin Refugee Camp, west of Jenin. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested ‘Orssan Mahmoud ‘Orssan Qraini (27) and Khalil Ramzi Khalil Hwail (21), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 06:35, Israeli forces backed by seven military vehicles moved around 100 meters into the west of the border fence with Israel, east of al-Buraij in the central Gaza Strip. The military vehicles leveled and combed lands adjacent to the border fence. Five hours later, the vehicles headed to the south, arrived at the east of Khan Younis, and leveled lands in the area. At approximately 14:30, the Israeli vehicles redeployed along the border fence with Israeli, east of Khan Younis.
  • At approximately 17:00, an Israeli infantry force moved into al-Hassin Valley area in the southern area of Hebron. They raided and searched around 30 houses, claiming that there was a child stoned the Israeli soldiers. The searching continued for around three hours and no arrests among houses’ owners were reported.

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (10) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Kaffr Qalil and Tal villages in Nablus; Taqou’ village, southeast of Bethlehem; Sateh Marhaba neighborhood in the center of al-Bireh; Bitello, Beit Loqia and al-Moghir villages in Ramallah and al-Bireh; al-Shayoukh, Bani N’aim and Beit ‘Ula villages in Hebron.

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into al-Nabi Younis area, north of Halhoul City, north of Hebron. They then stationed on streets leading to al-Nabi Younis Mosque and dozens of settlers arrived at the area. Many of the settlers raided the mosque and preformed religious ritual. Meanwhile, many of the residents gathered and a number of children and young men threw stones at military vehicles. The Israeli forces fired sound bombs, tear gas canisters and rubber bullets at the stones-throwers and civilians’ houses. As a result, a 22-year-old was hit with a rubber bullet to the right eye and a 16-year-old child was hit with a tear gas canister to the face. The wounded civilians were then taken to al-Ahly Hospital in Hebron.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces backed by three military vehicles moved into al-Salam Street in Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mos’ab Mohammed al-Zghir (36) and then handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem.

 

  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces backed by four military vehicles moved into Deir Abu Mish’al, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested Ahmed Omar Zahran (22), Mahmoud Kamal Zahran (29) and Omar Jameel ‘Ata (19), taking them to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Safa village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched Majdi Mashhour Karaja (26) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Sa’id Mohammed Hafed Shraida (27) and then arrested him, taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli forces moved into Qosra village, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched houses and then arrested ‘Abdullah Nimer Sa’id (24), taking him to an unknown destination.

 

  • At approximately 08:00, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha shore, northwest of Beit Lahia in the Northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within three nautical miles and chased them. The shooting caused fear and panic among fishermen. As a result, the fishermen fled for fear of their lives and no casualties or damages to the boats were reported.

Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Abu Qash and Birzait villages, north of Ramallah; Wahi al-Balo’ village, al-Bireh; Sa’ir and Beit Ummar villages in Hebron.

Use of Force against Demonstrations in Protest against the U.S. President’s Decision to Recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel:

 

Israeli forces continued its excessive use of lethal force against peaceful demonstration organized by Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and it was named as “The Great March of Return and Breaking Siege.” The demonstration was in protest against the U.S. President Donald Trump’s declaration to move the U.S. Embassy to it. According to PCHR fieldworkers’ observations, the border area witnessed large participation by Palestinian civilians as the Israeli forces continued to use upon highest military and political echelons excessive force against the peaceful demonstrators, though the demonstration were fully peaceful. The demonstration was as follows during the reporting period:

 

Gaza Strip:

 

On Friday, 01 March 2019; the 49th week of the March of Return and Breaking Siege activities, Israeli forces wounded 92 civilians, including 26 children, 2 women, a journalist, and 3 paramedics. The injuries of 3 of them were classified as serious. The incidents were as follows:

 

  • Northern Gaza City: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of 12 civilians, including six children. Two of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and ten were directly hit with tear gas canisters.

 

  • Gaza Strip: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of 28 civilians, including four children and a journalist. Ten of then were hit with live bullet and shrapnel and, 12 were directly hit with tear gas canisters and six with rubber bullets. The wounded journalist identified as Mohammad al-Dwaik was hit with a rubber bullet to the leg.Mohammad works as a reporter at Ithad Press.

 

  • Central Gaza Strip: The Israeli shooting and throwing tear gas canisters at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued until 17:30, resulted in the injury of 18 civilians, including six children. Five of them were hit with a live bullet and shrapnel and 13 were directly hit with tear gas canisters and the injury of one of them was classified as serious.

 

  • Khan Yunis: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued until 17:30, resulted in the injury of 17 civilians, including six children, a woman and two Civil Defense paramedics. Doctors classified the injury of one of the children as serious.
  • Rafah: The Israeli shooting and firing tear gas canisters at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued from 14:00 until 17:00, resulted in the injury of 17 civilians, including four children, a woman and a paramedic. Five of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and 12 were directly hit with tear gas canisters. Doctors classified the injury of one of them as serious. The wounded paramedic identified as ‘Abuld Razzaq Ibrahim Ijme’an Abu ‘Athra (36) was hit with a tear gas canister to the lower limbs. ‘Abdul Razzaq is a volunteer paramedic at the PRCS.
  1. Continued closure of the oPt

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

Gaza Strip

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

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

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

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

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

Movement at Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, southeast of Rafah, is designated for the movement of goods

 

Note: Due to technical reasons, we could not obtain the official statistics from the department responsible for issuing the statistics

 

Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing, in the north of the Gaza Strip, is designated for the movement of individuals, and links the Gaza Strip with the West Bank.

 

Movement at Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing

(20-26 February 2019)

 

Category 20 February 21 February 22 February 23 February 24 February 25 February 26  February
Patients 67 28 2 74 77 67
Companions 65 31 1 63 70 67
Personal needs 30 35 3 23 14 20
Families of prisoners 44
Arabs fromIsrael 3 11 3 8 5 5
Diplomats 3
Meetings in Erez
International workers 50 77 13 12 18 43
TravelersAbroad 29 4 32
Business people+ BMC 280 275 1 562 375 279
Economic and agriculture    interviews
Security interviews 2 1 6 2 3
Death cases
Companions’ Deaths
Return to the West Bank 2 3 1
Christians’ Holidays
Conferences and Training courses 1 1
Permits’ renewal 5 1
VIPs 1
AmbulancesPatient 2 3 2 3 3 6
Ambulancescompanion 3 3 2 2 3 6

 

 Movement at Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing

(27 February -05 March 2019)

 

Category 27 February 28 February 01 March 02 March 03 March 04 March 05 March
Patients 66 39 3 79 62 60
Companions 57 37 1 64 61 55
Personal needs 24 34 16 20 8 18
Families of prisoners 5
Arabs fromIsrael 14 13 3 10 3 3
Diplomats 50 1
Meetings in Erez 1
International workers 39 84 15 20 14 19
TravelersAbroad 1 38 3 2 23
Business people+ BMC 287 216 627 344 278
Economic and agriculture    interviews
Security interviews 3 3 4 2 3
Death cases
Companions’ Deaths
Return to the West Bank 1 4
Christians’ Holidays
Conferences and Training courses 1 1
Permits’ renewal 1 1
VIPs 1 1
AmbulancesPatient 5 4 1 2 2 2
Ambulancescompanion 6 4 1 2 2 2

 

Following table illustrates temporary and permanent checkpoints and arrests at these checkpoints in the West Bank from 28 February to 06 March 2019:

 

Governorate Permanent temporary Temporary checkpoints Closed Roads Arrested persons
Jerusalem 13 5
Nablus 10 13 2
Jenin 5 5
Ramallah 11 11 1
Tulkarm 7 1 1
Tubas 2 1 1
Salfit 3 11 2
Qalqiliyia 5 7 2
Hebron 20 31 3
Bethlehem 11 9 2
Jericho 5 1
Al-Karama Crossing
Total 92 95 14

 

  • Efforts to Create A Jewish majority

 

Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it:

 

Arrests and Incursions:

 

  • On Sunday, 03 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested Tawfiq ‘Othman, ‘Abed al-Raheem Khalil al-‘Abasi, Nidal Sufyian al-Natshah, Tareq Sa’adah al-‘Abasi, Majd Ahmed al-A’war, and Mahmoud Najeeb al-A’war.

 

  • At approximately 01:00 on Monday, 04 March 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Isawiyia village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Omar Abu Suninah and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into a house belonging to Mohamed Khaled Sharirah in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City and then arrested him.

 

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit ‘Anan village, northwest of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Wisam Hussain Rabie’ and then arrested him.

 

  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Badow village, northwest of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Hisham Hamidan and then arrested him.
  • On Monday, Israeli forces arrested ‘Abed al-Rahman Mahmoud (39), from al-‘Issawiyia village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. ‘Abed al-Rahman was arrested after summonsing him for investigation in “’Ofer” Prison, west of Ramallah. He was then taken to al-Maskopiyia Police Station in West Jerusalem. It should be noted that ‘Abed al-Raham served 17 years in the Israeli jails and was released last week on condition that he will deport from his village to Jericho for 10 days.

Notices and House Demolitions:

On Saturday, 02 March 2019, Husam al-‘Abasi self-demolished his house in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to implement the Israeli Municipality decision under the pretext of non-licensing.  He said that the Israeli Municipality issued a decision to self-demolish his house in Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood in Silwan village and ordered him to demolish it or the Israeli vehicles will implement the demolition during 2 weeks. He added that that Municipality informed him that if he does not demolish the house, he will pay the demolition cost, which is estimated at NIS 80,000.  He also said that he built a 70-sqaure-meter story above his family house a year ago, where he along with his wife and their child live in.

 

Seizing Palestinian Civilians’ Property in Favor of Settlement Association:

 

  • On Tuesday, 05 March 2019, Israeli settlers seized a building in ‘Aqabet Darwish in Jerusalem’s Old City. Eyewitnesses said that a group of Israeli settlers raided a house belonging to al-Halabi family while they were outside the house. The Israeli settlers closed the house with locks and then started to install cameras and put wires on the building’s walls and roof. It should be noted that the building belongs to Jerusalemite families. Around 60% of the building was given to the Israeli settlers while al-Halabi family managed to maintain the other 40% (100 square meters). Two of Jawdat al-Halabi’s heirs live in the building.

 

  • In the same context, the Israeli authorities issued judicial notices against Maragha family, claiming their plot of land, where a building was established in Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. Wadi al-Helwa Information Center said that “Ateret Cohanim” Settlement Association handed Maragha family judicial notices for 9 of the family members, claiming their plot of land, where a building was established in Baten al-Hawa neighborhood in the village. The building is comprised of 5 apartments and a parking. The building shelters 15 members. The family said that they live in the building for more than 100 years and they have the documents proving their ownership. Moreover, Batn al-Hawa neighborhood committee said that Maragha Family building is part of “Ateret Cohanim” settlement association’s plan to seize 5,200 square meters of al-Hara al-Wosta neighborhood in Batn al-Hawa area. “Ateret Cohanim” settlement association claimed that the land belongs to Jews from Yemen since 1881 and the Israeli Supreme approved the seetler’s ownership to the land. The committee added that 30-35 residential building are established on the land threatened by “Ateret Cohanim” settlement association and around 80 families, including 436 members, live in it. The village’s residents live in the neighborhood 10 years ago after buying lands and property from form their former owners with official documents.

 

Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property

Israeli forces’ attacks:

 

  • At approximately 10:00 on Sunday, 03 March 2019, Israeli forces backed by 2 military vehicles and accompanied with a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration moved into Beit Ta’mour village, southeast of Bethlehem. The Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to Nayif Hasan Zawahrah (39) and then took photos of it. The Israeli Civil Administration officer handed Zawahrah a demolition notice under the pretext of non-licensing. It should be noted that the Israeli authorities handed Nayif a notice to stop construction work during June 2018.

 

  • At approximately 15:30 on Tuesday, 05 March 2019, Israeli forces confiscated a bulldozer belonging to the Israeli Ma’is Company. The bulldozer was cleaning rubbles on the main street near Doma village, southeast of Nablus. After that, 2 military jeeps arrived at the area, stopped the bulldozer while working and then informed the diver that they want to confiscate the bulldozer without giving him any reasons. The driver told them that the bulldozer is licensed and belongs to Sadeq Murshed Bani FaDEL, FROM ‘Aqraba village, southeast of the city. The bulldozer was taken to “Taffouh” settlement near Za’tarah checkpoint, south of Nablus.

 

Israeli settlers’ attacks:

 

  • At approximately 12:00 on Tuesday, 05 March 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Yatizhar” settlement established in the northern side of ‘Oreef village’s lands, south of Nablus. The settlers raided Palestinian civilians’ houses and ‘Oreef Secondary School, under the Israeli forces’ protection. As a result, some windows belonging to Moneer Suliman al-Nori’s house were broken.

 

Recommendations to the International Community

PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 11 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.

  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC this year to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area.

…………………………………………………………

Public Document

For further information please visit our website www.pchrgaza.org or contact PCHR’s office in Gaza City, Gaza Strip by email pchr@pchrgaza.org or telephone +972 08 282 4776 – 282 5893.

israel (apartheid state) cuts off water supply for 2600 Palestinians in Jordan Valley

Israel cuts off water supply for 2600 Palestinians in Jordan Valley

Ma’an – March 6, 2019

Israeli forces and the Israeli Civil Administration cut off water supply for dozens of Palestinians living in communities in Bardala village in the Jordan Valley in the northern occupied West Bank, on Wednesday

Mutaz Bisharat, an official who monitors settlement activity in Tubas/Jordan Valley, told Ma’an that Israeli forces cut off water supply for 60% of residents of the Bardala village; that is 2600 people.

Israeli forces also cut off water supply for 1800-2000 dunams of Palestinian agricultural lands that must be continuously irrigated.

Bisharat added that Israel claims that water sources supplying residents with water are illegal, stressing that the water comes from water wells in the village and inside Palestinian lands.

He pointed out that as Israeli forces cut off water supply for Palestinians, they construct water wells for Israeli settlers.

Bisharat called upon international and humanitarian institutions to immediately intervene to stop Israeli violations of human rights.

The Jordan Valley forms a third of the occupied West Bank, with 88 percent of its land classified as Area C — under full Israeli military control.

Water allocations are very necessary for the increase of agricultural production, in order to support the economic growth of many Palestinian farmers.

Jordan Valley residents mostly live in enclaves closed off by Israeli military zones, checkpoints, and more than 30 illegal Israeli settlements

Two Palestinian children killed in home fire after israel (apartheid state) blocks fire trucks

Two Palestinian children killed in home fire after Israel blocks fire trucks

Two Palestinian children killed in home fire after Israel blocks fire trucks

Palestinian children were killed in a blaze at their home after Israeli forces prevented the fire brigade from reaching them in time in Hebron, West Bank

Israeli soldiers prevented a Palestinian fire truck from reaching a home fire, resulting in the deaths of two small children. This is just one example of a trend: Israelis detain or damage ambulances and attack medics on a regular basis.

reposted from Middle East Monitor

Two Palestinian children have been killed in a blaze at their home in occupied Hebron after the Israeli authorities prevented the fire brigade from reaching them in time.

The two children – one of whom is believed to have been just 18-months old – were burned to death in a fire at their home in the Al-Salaymeh neighbourhood of Hebron’s Old City in the occupied West Bank. One was reported dead late last night, while the second succumbed to the burns received this morning after receiving emergency treatment at the nearby Hebron government hospital. A third child, thought to be the dead children’s brother, also suffered severe burns in the incident and remains in intensive care, according to hospital Director Dr Walid Zalloum.

The names of the three children have not been released formally, but Palestinian news site Palestine Today named the two who were killed as four-year-old Wael Al-Rajabi and his 18-month-old sister Malik. The local police spokesman, Colonel Loai Arziqat, confirmed in a press statement that two children had died, but did not offer further information.

Though the emergency services were called, the fire brigade was prevented from reaching the scene by Israeli soldiers. In a video filmed last night at 21:50 local time (19:50 GMT), the fire engine can be seen trying to drive down a narrow street. The truck comes to a stop at a road block obstructing the way, while local residents implore the Israeli soldiers stationed there to “open the gate quickly, for the children.”

The Israeli soldiers, however, did not yield to the onlookers’ pleas, delaying the emergency services’ response and preventing them from reaching the property. The cause of the fire remains unknown.

Ongoing outrage

Israel is no stranger to restricting emergency services’ access to Palestinians in need. According to Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP), citing the Palestine Red Crescent Society, since 2015 Israel has prevented ambulances from crossing checkpoints on 123 occasions. In addition, there were 386 attacks against Red Crescent teams across the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt) during the same period, as well as 105 ambulances damaged.

In December, Israeli soldiers shot a Palestinian child then prevented him from receiving potentially life-saving medical treatment; he died soon thereafter. Seventeen-year-old Mahmoud Nakhle was shot as Israeli forces suppressed protests around Al-Jalazun refugee camp near Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank. A few minutes later, the soldiers chased off a Palestinian ambulance, threatening the driver with their rifles and not giving Nakhle first aid themselves. Only after a quarter of an hour did the soldiers allow an ambulance to be summoned, but Nakhle died en route to hospital.

Under international law, as the occupying power Israel is forbidden from preventing access to medical care and emergency services to the people living under its occupation. According to the Fourth Geneva Convention, “The occupying power must ensure sufficient hygiene and public health standards, as well as the provision of food and medical care to the population under occupation.”

In addition, “Personnel of the International Red Crescent Movement must be allowed to carry out their humanitarian activities.” Israel, however, continues to breach this and other articles of international laws and conventions with impunity

Extremist Israeli Settlers (jewish terrorists) Attack High School Near Nablus

Extremist Israeli Settlers Attack High School Near Nablus

 

 

06 Mar
7:49 AM

 

 

 

 

 

 

A group of extremist illegal Israeli colonialist settlers attacked, Tuesday, Palestinian High School students and teachers, in the northern occupied West Bank, according to WAFA.

The attack took place in Orif village, near the illegal Israeli Yitzar colony,  south of the West Bank city of Nablus.

Adel al-Amer, a member of Orif village council, told WAFA that scores of settlers attacked and stormed Orif Secondary School for Boys, and subsequently surrounded the school, trapping the school teachers inside.

The colonists hurled stones at homes in the village, which led to confrontations with the residents, before Israeli soldiers opened fire at the residents attempting to defend their homes.

Ghassan Daghlas, a local official told Maan that 50 extremist Israeli settlers attacked the school, stating that one student, injured by rocks thrown by the extremist settlers, was treated at the scene.

In addition to damaging school windows, the settlers damaged vehicles belonging to some of the teachers.

Locals told Maan that Israeli forces raided the village at the same time the settlers attacked, causing clashes with locals.

Military vehicles fired tear-gas bombs, and stun grenades at the villagers, with no further injuries reported.

It is important to note that this is the eleventh time this school has been raided since the beginning of the school year, disrupting the education of Palestinian youth.

Under International Law, all settlements built in the occupied territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, are illegal, as stated in the article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Therefore, as the occupying power, Israel is in violation of International Law, as 500,000 – 600,000 of its civilian population has colonized the Palestinian land which it occupies.

From Qana to Gaza, israel (apartheid state) issues denials and smears investigations of its crimes

From Qana to Gaza, Israel issues denials and smears investigations of its crimes

By Professor Kamel Hawwash | MEMO | March 5, 2019

I wrote recently about an EU report on the growth of illegal Israeli settlements and argued that the EU was diligent in documenting Israel’s-breaches of international law but that it has singularly failed to bring it to account, even when it has demolished EU-funded projects.

A more recent report commissioned by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) investigated the actions of the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) at the nominal border with Gaza since 30 March last year, which marked the beginning of the Great March of Return protests. For almost 50 weeks, Israeli snipers have gunned down, with deliberate, chilling precision, Palestinian men, women and children.

The “Report of the independent international commission of inquiry on the protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory – A/HRC/40/74” acknowledges that the peaceful protests “were civilian in nature, with clearly stated political aims.” The protesters asked to be allowed to return to the homes from which they have been expelled from 1948 onwards, and for a lifting of the siege on Gaza. Instead of meeting their peaceful and legitimate demands from the outset, Israel has killed over 200 Palestinians, including journalists and medics, and maimed dozens of young men, who now have to face life as amputees, rather than sportsmen.

The irony here is that Israel complained about Malaysia’s decision to ban the Israeli Paralympics team from competing in the country, while the IDF was making its own sickening contribution to future Palestinian Paralympics teams.

The UNHRC’s report makes for gruesome reading. Israeli soldiers are accused of “intentionally firing on civilians, who were neither directly participating in hostilities, nor posing an imminent threat.” The report warns that, “These serious human rights and humanitarian law violations may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity.”

Israel’s reaction was predictable and follows a long line of denial and smearing of any report which accuses it of wrongdoing. According to a Foreign Ministry spokesman, “This report was born in sin, in a politically biased, one-sided resolution that determined the outcome before the investigation even started.” He went on to lay the blame on Hamas: “[Hamas] has declared war on Israel and calls to kill Jews. Hamas is orchestrating the attacks and using civilians in Gaza as human weapons to assault Israel and Israeli civilians. Hamas exploits the civilians in Gaza as human shields for terrorists.” As usual when such allegations are made, no evidence is produced to back them up, nor is the legitimate right to resist military occupation ever mentioned.

The spokesman went on to smear the UNHRC and the report’s three authors: “The HRC becomes an accomplice of a terrorist organisation, supporting Hamas’s aggression against Israel and the oppression of the people of Gaza.” The three individuals, he alleged, lack any understanding in security matters, without a relevant professional background.

Israel’s apologists came out in force to condemn the report, including US President Donald Trump’s Special Envoy Jason Greenblatt. “This COI report is another manifestation of the UNHRC’s clear bias against Israel,” he tweeted, “which remains the only country that the Council dedicates an entire standing agenda item to targeting.”

Such condemnation of investigations into Israel’s crimes and smearing of investigation teams and the bodies that form them is not new. The UNHRC set up an investigation into Israel’s 2014 military offensive against the Gaza Strip which lasted for 50 days, resulting in over 2,000 Palestinians being killed and causing extensive destruction.

The Report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict – A/HRC/29/52 accused both Hamas and Israel of committing war crimes. “Israel does not commit war crimes,” claimed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he rejected the report. “Israel defends itself against a terrorist organisation that calls for its destruction and carries out many war crimes.” He accused the commission of being “notoriously biased” against Israel.

Following an escalation of violence in November 2012, a UN report criticised armed Palestinian groups and the IDF. The latter, it insisted, “did not consistently uphold the basic principles of conduct of hostilities, namely, the principles of distinction, proportionality and precautions.” The report documented a number of cases, including one which took place on 18 November, in which an Israeli air strike targeted without prior warning a three-storey house belonging to the Al-Dalou family in Al-Nasser neighbourhood, in central Gaza City. The strike killed 12 people, including five children and four women. Again, Israel brushed aside criticism and no individual Israeli was held accountable.

Following the 2008/9 Israeli military offensive on Gaza, the UN published the Goldstone Report on the devastating events which took place between 27 December 2008 and 17 January 2009 and which resulted in over 1,300 Palestinians being killed. The report accused both Israel and Palestinian armed groups of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Israel’s reaction was predictable. The Foreign Ministry said that, “Israel rejects the one-sided resolution adopted in Geneva by the UN human rights council and calls upon all responsible states to reject it as well… [The resolution] provides encouragement for terrorist organisations worldwide and undermines global peace.” It also accused the UNHRC of anti-Israel bias.

Israel’s siege and attack on the Jenin refugee camp in April 2002, which lasted for 10 days and killed dozens if not hundreds of Palestinians (the figures are disputed) again brought accusations of war crimes against Israel. The Israeli government refused to allow a UN team to carry out a field investigation, resulting in the UN producing a report based on available evidence. “In sum, the Israeli occupying forces have, without a doubt, committed serious violations of international humanitarian law,” the report concluded. “Also, without a doubt, war crimes, including grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention, have been committed by Israel, the occupying Power, in several Palestinian cities, including in the Jenin refugee camp.” However, the report disputed the Palestinian claim of a massacre, a decision which was welcomed by the Israeli government. Furthermore, the report was judged as “seriously flawed” by human rights organisations and Britain’s Independent newspaper, which were able to corroborate many of the allegations against the occupation state. No Israeli has ever been held accountable for any violations.

It is possible to go back further in time to another Israeli atrocity to demonstrate the lack of accountability for crimes committed by the IDF. On 18 April 1996, Israeli forces shelled a UN compound in Qana, in Southern Lebanon, where 800 Lebanese civilians had taken refuge; 106 people were killed in the attack. Israel claimed that this was due to technical issues rather than deliberate targeting of a UN facility. However, the subsequent UN investigation concluded, “While the possibility cannot be ruled out completely, it is unlikely that the shelling of the United Nations compound was the result of gross technical and/or procedural errors.” The UN also found that “Contrary to repeated denials, two Israeli helicopters and a remotely piloted vehicle were present in the Qana area at the time of the shelling.” Amnesty International called for an independent investigation arguing, “It is not enough that the Israeli army investigates themselves. Israel has a history of either not investigating civilian deaths, or conducting similarly flawed inquiries.”

Now here we are, 23 years on and the UN’s most recent report again calls on Israel to investigate its own crimes, even though everyone knows that Israel never finds its own people guilty; always dismisses reports carried out by independent investigators as biased and one-sided; denies entry to the investigation teams; and refuses to cooperate. It claims to apply the highest standards of self-regulation but no one has ever been held fully accountable for any crimes, despite the thousands of deaths, the tens of thousands of injuries and the tens of thousands of homes that have been destroyed by Israelis since Qana, never mind the other massacres which have occurred since 1948.

It is time for Israel to be held to account for its actions, for the sake of those who have suffered at its hands. If international law is to have any credibility at all, we need to ensure that all UN member states pay due respect to human rights and the quest for justice through due legal process.

Miko Peled: The State of israel (apartheid state) Will Crumble and We Will See A Free Democratic Palestine from the River to the Sea Sooner than Most People Think

The Source

Miko Peled Author 6d98a

Miko Peled, an Israeli general’s son and himself a former Israeli soldier, is nowadays a noted peace activist and a tireless worker for justice in the Holy Land. He is considered to be one of the clearest voices calling for support of BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) against the Zionist regime and for the creation of a single democracy with equal rights on all of historic Palestine.

He will be at the Labour Party Conference in Liverpool on 23-26 September. I was lucky enough to have the chance to interview him beforehand. In a week that marks the 70th anniversary of the assassination of Folke Bernadotte and the 36th anniversary of the genocidal massacre at Sabra and Shatila refugee camp, atrocities committed in pursuit of Zionist ambition, what Miko says may give those who take dictation from the Israel lobby cause to reflect.

Stuart Littlewood:  Miko, you were raised in a Zionist family on a Zionist diet. What happened to cause you to break out from there?

Miko Peled:  As the title of my memoir The General’s Son suggests, I was born to a father who was a general in the IDF and then, as the sub-title points out, I embarked on a “Journey of an Israeli in Palestine”. The journey defined for me, and through me will hopefully define for the reader, what is “Israel” and what is “Palestine”. It is a journey from the sphere of the privileged oppressor and occupier (Israel) to that of the oppressed (Palestine) and the people who are native to Palestine. I discovered that it is, in fact, the same country, that Israel is Palestine occupied. But without the journey, I would not have figured that out. This for me was the key. It allowed me to see the injustice, the deprivation, the lack of water and rights and so on. The further I allowed, and continue to allow myself to venture into this journey the more I was able to see what Zionism really is, what Israel is, and who I am within that.

Many months ago you warned that Israel was going to “pull all the stops, they are going to smear, they are going to try anything they can to stop Corbyn”, and the reason anti-Semitism is used is that they have no other argument. This has come true with Jeremy Corbyn under vicious, sustained attack even from former Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks. How should Corbyn deal with it and what counter-measures would you suggest he takes?

Jeremy Corbyn made it clear during last year’s Labour conference that he will not allow the anti-Semitic accusations to interfere with his work as leader of the Labour Party and as a man dedicated to creating a just society in the UK and a just world. In that speech, he said something that no Western leader would dare to say: “We must end the oppression of the Palestinian people.” He has been right on the money the whole time and his support is growing. I believe he is doing the right thing. I expect he will continue to do so.

And what do you make of Sacks’ outburst?

Not surprising that a racist who supports Israel would come out like this – he represents no one.

The Labour Party’s ruling body, the NEC, has adopted the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism lock, stock, and barrel despite warnings from legal experts and a recommendation to include caveats by the House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee. This decision is seen as caving in to outside pressure and obviously impacts on free speech which is enshrined in British law and guaranteed by international convention. How will it affect Labour’s credibility?

Accepting the IHRA definition was a mistake and I am sure they will live to feel the sting of shame this has placed on those who voted to adopt it. There are at least two notices out already by the Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, which makes up at least 25% to 30% of UK Jews, that they reject the notion that JC is anti-Semitic, they reject Zionism and they reject the IHRA definition.

Turning to the Occupation, you have said that Israel achieved its aim to make the conquest of the West Bank irreversible 25 years ago. Why do you think the Western Powers still cling to the idea of a Two State Solution?  How do you expect the situation to play out?

The US, and particularly the current administration, accepts that Israel has swallowed all of Mandatory Palestine and there is no room for non-Jews in that country. They make no claims otherwise. The Europeans are in a different situation. The politicians in Europe want to appease Israel and accept it as it is. Their constituents, however, demand justice for the Palestinians so, as an act of cowardly compromise, the EU countries in true post-colonial fashion treat the Palestinian Authority as though it was a Palestinian state. That is why, I believe, the Europeans are going ahead and “recognizing” the so-called State of Palestine, even though there is no such state. They do it in order to appease their constituents without actually doing anything to further the cause of justice in Palestine. These recognitions have helped not one Palestinian, they have not freed a single prisoner from an Israeli prison, they have not saved a single child from bombings in Gaza, they have not alleviated the suffering and deprivation of Palestinians in the Naqab desert or in the refugee camps. It is an empty, cowardly gesture.

What the Europeans ought to do is adopt BDS. They should recognize that Palestine is occupied, that Palestinians are living under an apartheid regime in their own land, they are victims of ethnic cleansing and genocide and that this must stop, and the Zionist occupation must end completely and without conditions.

I believe the State of Israel will crumble and that we will see a free democratic Palestine from the River to the Sea sooner than most people think. The current reality is unsustainable, two million people in Gaza are not going away, Israel has just announced – again – that two million of its non-Jewish citizens are not welcome to be part of that state, and BDS is hard at work.

The IDF calls itself the most moral army in the world. You served in the IDF. How credible is its claim?

It is a lie. There is no such thing as a moral army and the IDF has been engaged in ethnic cleansing, genocide and enforcing an apartheid regime for seven decades. In fact the IDF is one of the best equipped, best trained, best financed and best fed terrorist forces in the world. Even though they have generals and nice uniforms and the most advanced weapons, they are no more than armed gangs of thugs and its main purpose is to terrorize and kill Palestinians. Its officers and soldiers execute with enthusiasm the policies of brutality and ruthlessness which are cruelly inflicted on Palestinians’ everyday life.

Breaking the Silence is an organization of IDF veterans committed to exposing the truth about a foreign military trying to control an oppressed civilian population under illegal occupation. They say their aim is to eventually end the occupation. How do you rate their chances of success?

They and other NGOs like them could make a huge difference. Unfortunately, they do not go far enough, they do not call on young Israelis to refuse to serve in the IDF, and they do not reject Zionism. Without these two elements, I feel their work is superficial and will make little difference.

Israelis often accuse the Palestinian education system of turning out future terrorists. How does Israel’s education compare?

The Palestinian education system goes through a thorough vetting process so all claims of it teaching hate are baseless. Israel, however, does a fine job in teaching Palestinians that they are occupied and oppressed and have no choice but to resist. They do it using the military, the secret police, the apartheid bureaucracy, the countless permits and prohibitions and restrictions on their lives.

The Israeli courts teach Palestinians that there is no justice for them under the Israeli system and that they are counted as nothing. I have not met Palestinians who express hate, but if some do it is because of the education that Israel is providing, not because of any Palestinian textbook.

Israelis go through a thorough racist education that is well documented in a book by my sister, Prof. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, titled Palestine in Israeli Textbooks.

Christian communities in the Holy Land have been dwindling fast. The Israelis claim the Muslims are pushing them out but Christians say it’s the cruelty of the occupation that has caused so many to leave. What is your take on this? Are the Israelis trying to drive a wedge between Christians and Muslims? Is there a religious war going on to drive the Christians out?

Christians used to make up 12% of the population in Palestine, now they are barely 2%. There is no one to blame for this other than Israel. Israel destroyed Palestinian Christian communities and churches just like they destroyed Muslims. To Israel, Arabs are Arabs and they have no place in the Land of Israel. I strongly recommend the late Bob Simon’s excellent report on CBS 60 Minutes from 2012 titled Christians in the Holy Land. At the end, he confronts the former Ambassador of Israel to Washington DC who wanted the show canceled.

Would you call yourself a religious person these days? 

I never was.

You know Gaza. How do you rate Hamas on their potential to govern?  And could honest brokers work with them towards peace?

I have no way to rate Hamas one way or another. I did speak to people who worked in Gaza for many years, both Palestinians and foreigners, and their assessment was that as far as governing goes, and taking into consideration the severe conditions under which they live, they are to be commended.

Some people say that the Israeli public is largely unaware of the horrors of the occupation and shielded from the truth. If true, is it beginning to change?

Israelis are fully aware of the atrocities and they approve. Israelis vote, and they vote in high numbers and for seven decades they keep voting for people who send them and their children to commit these atrocities. The atrocities are committed not by foreign mercenaries but by Israeli boys and girls who for the most part serve proudly. The only thing that changed is the discourse. In the past, there was a facade of a civilized discourse within Israel, and today that no longer exists. Saying that Israel must kill more and more Palestinians is a perfectly acceptable statement today. In the past, people were somewhat embarrassed to admit they thought that way.

Israel has carried out a succession of armed assaults in international waters on humanitarian aid boats taking urgent medical and other non-military supplies to the beleaguered people of Gaza. Crew and passengers are routinely beaten up and thrown in jail, and some killed. Should the organizers now give up, or re-double their efforts using different tactics?

The Gaza flotillas are certainly commendable but if the goal is to reach the shores of Gaza they are doomed to fail. Their value is only in the fact that they are an expression of solidarity and one has to wonder if the time and effort and risk and expense justify the result. Israel will make sure no one gets through and the world pays them little attention. In my opinion, the flotillas are not the best form of action. No single issue in the ongoing tragedy in Palestine can be resolved on its own. Not the siege on Gaza, not the political prisoners, not the water issue and not the racist laws, etc. Only a focused and well-coordinated strategy to delegitimize and bring down the Zionist regime can bring justice to Palestine. BDS has the best potential for that but it is not being utilized enough and too much time is wasted on arguing its merits.

Certainly one of the weaknesses on the part of those who care to see justice in Palestine is that anyone with an idea just “goes for it.” There is little co-ordination and hardly any strategy to the very crucial question of how to free Palestine. Israel has succeeded in creating a sense of helplessness on this side and in legitimizing itself and Zionism in general, and that is a serious challenge.

This week was the 70th anniversary of the murder of Swedish diplomat Count Folke Bernadotte by a Zionist hit-squad while serving as UN Security Council mediator in the Arab–Israeli conflict. Everyone is keeping strangely quiet about this, even the Swedes.

This was one in a series of many political assassinations perpetrated by Zionist terrorist gangs in which no-one was held accountable. The first was in 1924 when they assassinated Yaakov Dehan. Then in 1933, they assassinated Chaim Arlozorov. The 1946 massacre at the King David Hotel was of course politically motivated and caused close to one hundred deaths, most of them innocent people who happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. Then in September 1948 the assassination in Jerusalem of UN intermediary and member of the Swedish royal family, Folke Bernadotte, who apparently came with plans to end the violence in Palestine, plans that the Zionist establishment did not find acceptable. Bernadotte is buried in a humble family grave in Stockholm, there are no memorial services planned that I know of or any mention of this anniversary by any official Swedish organization. My grandfather was Israel’s first ambassador to Sweden. This was shortly after the assassination and he did a fine job making sure that the Swedish government would keep the issue quiet.

There were many, many more assassinations and massacres – the attack on the USS Liberty comes to mind as well as the part played by the brutality of the Zionist apparatus that sees killing as a legitimate tool for accomplishing its political goals. Little is known or recalled about these brutal killings. Countless Palestinian leaders, writers, poets, etc., were assassinated by Israel.

A lot of hope is pinned on BDS by Palestine solidarity. How effective is BDS and how best can civil society turn up the pressure?

BDS is a very effective but slow process. It won’t work through magic or Divine intervention. People need to embrace it fully, work hard, demand the expulsion of all Israeli diplomats and total isolation of Israel. There is too much tolerance for those who promote Zionism and promote Israel and the Israeli army and that needs to change. Elected officials need to be forced to accept BDS entirely. The Palestine solidarity groups need to move from solidarity to full resistance, and BDS is the perfect form of resistance available.

Are there any other key issues that you’re confronting right now?

Moving from solidarity to resistance is, in my opinion, key at this point. Using the tools we have, like BDS is crucial. The passing of the Israeli Nation-State Law is an opportunity to unite the Palestinian citizens of Israel back with the rest of the Palestinians. We should all strive to bring total unity between the refugees, the West Bank, Gaza and 1948, and demand complete equal rights and the replacing of the Zionist regime that has been terrorizing Palestine for seven decades with a free and democratic Palestine. This opportunity will hopefully be seized.

Finally, Miko, how are your two books doing – ‘The General’s Son’ and ‘Injustice: The Story of The Holy Land Foundation Five’? It seems to me that the latter, which tells how the justice system in the US has been undermined to benefit pro-Israel interests, ought to be a must-read here in the UK where the same thing is happening in our political and parliamentary institutions and could spread to the courts.

Well, they are doing fine, though neither one is a best seller yet, and as we are on the less popular side of the issue it is a tough sell. TGS is out in the second edition so that is good, and I would certainly like to see it and Injustice in the hands of more people. Sadly though, not enough people realize how the occupation in Palestine is affecting the lives of people in the West because of the work of Zionist watchdog groups like the Board of Deputies in the UK, and AIPAC and the ADL in the US.

In this case alone, five innocent men are serving long sentences in federal prison in the US only because they are Palestinians.

Many thanks, Miko, I appreciate your taking the time to share your views.

Chief among the many positive ideas I get from this encounter with Miko is the need for activists to shift up a gear and accelerate from solidarity to full-on resistance. This will mean wider involvement, better coordination, revised targeting, and a sharper strategy. In effect a BDS Mk2, supercharged and on high octane fuel. Secondly, we ought to treat Zionism and those who promote or support it with far less tolerance. As Miko said on another occasion, “If opposing Israel is anti-Semitism then what do you call supporting a state that has been engaged in brutal ethnic cleansing for seven decades?”

As for Jeremy Corbyn – if he reads this – yes, he’d better come down hard on hatemongers including the real foaming-at-the-mouth anti-Semites, but he must also purge the Labour Party of its equally contemptible ‘Zionist Tendency’. And that goes for all our political parties.

Corbyn Renews Calls to End UK Arms Sales to israel (apartheid state) in Wake of UN Report on Gaza Protests

Corbyn Renews Calls to End UK Arms Sales to Israel in Wake of UN Report on Gaza Protests

Jeremy Corbyn addresses the annual Labour Party conference in 2017. (Photo: Getty Images)

UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has renewed his calls for Britain to cease arms sales to Israel following a UN report last week that the Israeli army’s actions against Palestinian protesters in Gaza’s Great March of Return could amount to war crimes.

“The UK government must unequivocally condemn the killings and freeze arms sales to Israel,” Corbyn tweeted on Friday, linking the report.

The Labour Party approved a motion during a conference last September that called for the same embargo on arms sales to Israel.

During the conference, Corbyn, who has sustained years of attacks and accusations of anti-Semitism for his support of Palestinian rights, slammed US policies in the region and said that Palestinians can’t be “left alone in the darkness.”

Last week’s report by the UN Commission of Inquiry highlighted the killings of at least 189 Palestinians — though local estimates report much higher numbers — and the thousands of demonstrators who were maimed by Israeli snipers along the border since the Great March of Return started almost one year ago.

The commission criticized Israeli security forces’ rules of engagement in Gaza, saying that the majority of protesters killed  “did not pose an immediate threat of death or serious injury to others when they were shot.”

“Less lethal alternatives remained available and substantial defenses were in place, rendering the use of lethal force neither necessary nor proportionate, and therefore impermissible,” the commission said.

Despite Israeli claims that Hamas has used the protests as cover to “infiltrate” Israeli territory and carry out attacks, there have been little to no reports of Palestinians breaking through the border fence during protests or carrying out physical attacks against Israelis.

Additionally, the UN commission that conducted the study, which included over 300 interviews with victims, witnesses, and officials from the Israeli and Palestinians sides, found that as of the end of 2018, only 29 of the dead “could be clearly identified as members of Palestinian armed factions.”

The report estimated that as many as 23,000 Palestinians were injured by Israeli army fire, including hundreds who lost limbs as a result.

In accordance with dozens of similar reports from local and international rights groups, the commission said that Israeli snipers along the border intentionally shot at journalists and health workers despite their being clearly marked.

The report went on to say that due to the possibility of war crimes committed, Israeli security forces should be held “individually and collectively accountable” for the deaths and injuries of the protesters.

Israeli and US officials widely condemned the report, citing “anti-Israel bias” in the UN.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is set to be indicted on charges of bribery and corruption in coming weeks, slammed the report saying it “set a new record for U.N. hypocrisy” and was “based purely on an obsessive hatred of Israel.”

The Trump administration’s special envoy to the Middle East, Jason Greenblatt, called the report “another manifestation of the UNHRC’s clear bias against Israel,” and went on to claim that Hamas was behind the protests.

 

“Hamas behaved with reckless irresponsibility & disregard for human life when it incited VIOLENT (not “civilian”) protests, breaches & attacks at the Gaza fence-line,” Greenblatt tweeted.

“Hamas is directly responsible for the miserable situation of the people of Gaza,” he said.

But in its report, the commission determined that the protests “arose out of a desire by Gaza residents to draw attention, in a nonviolent manner, to the dire humanitarian situation in the strip amid a strict land, sea and air blockade by Israel and Egypt that has been in place for more than a decade.”

The Gaza Strip is home to more than 2 million Palestinians, over 70 percent of whom are refugees whose families were forcibly expelled from their homes during the Nakba in 1948.

Since the Great March of Return was launched on March 30, 2018, thousands of Palestinians in Gaza have taken to the borders with Israel to demand the right of return of refugees to their ancestral homelands in present day Israel, and an end to the nearly 12-year siege on Gaza, which has crippled the coastal enclave’s economy.

Gazans suffer from lack of access to clean water, high unemployment rates, and electricity for only a few hours a day, contributing to the growing frustrations in the coastal enclave.

 

israel’s (apartheid state) War On Palestine’s Food Supplies: Settlers (jewish terrorists) & Soldiers Attack Palestinian Farmers

Settlers & Soldiers Attack Palestinian Farmers

A horde of extremist Jewish settlers, on Friday afternoon, assaulted Palestinian farmers in Fara’ata village, east of Qalqilia.

Local sources told a reporter for the Palestinian Information Center (PIC) that a group of settlers, escorted by soldiers, brutalized farmers living in the eastern area of the village and threatened to attack them if they come again, to their agricultural lands.

The sources added, according to Days of Palestine, that the settlers also detained two cars belonging to local residents, for a while, and threatened to burn crops in plots of land belonging to Fara’ata farmers.

On Saturday morning, Israeli soldiers opened fire, with machine guns, at Palestinian farmers as they were working their plots of land in the east of Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip.

According to local sources, the intensity of the shooting forced the farmers to leave their lands, but no one was injured in the attack

Without Saying a Word, israeli (apartheid state) Troops Beat Up a Blind Man in His Bed

Without saying a word, Israeli troops beat up a blind man in his bed

https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-without-saying-a-word-israeli-troops-beat-up-a-blind-man-in-his-bed-1.6980517

Israeli soldiers invaded the home of a Palestinian family at night, and battered a man in the face in front of his wife and children. He’s 47, blind and on dialysis, and his toes have been amputated because of diabetes

He’s lying on the living room sofa, next to the gas stove, trying to warm his broken body. When we visited him this week, he had just returned from the hospital and was worn out from the dialysis treatment he has been undergoing three times a week for the 11 years since his kidneys stopped functioning, as a consequence of severe diabetes.

Before that, 15 years ago, he started to lose his sight, and for the past few years he has been completely blind. Also, over the course of the last six years, he has gradually had to have toes amputated, operation after operation. His face is sallow from the dialysis.

Physically shattered, he lies there, barely able to move. He needs help getting up; he’s incapable of doing anything on his own. Every few months, he travels to Jordan for the catheterization of the blood vessels in his legs, which are becoming blocked.

skip – Testimony of Munzar Mizhart from Doha, West Bank to WAFA News Agency

Testimony of Munzar Mizhart from Doha, West Bank to WAFA News Agency – דלג

So yes, Munzer Mizhar, 47, is a very sick man. Still, last week, that didn’t stop Israeli soldiers from pummeling him mercilessly, even after the neighbors had warned them that he was sick. Nor was his wife, an eyewitness to the attack, able to prevent the abuse of her husband despite her shouts that he was blind, too.

Nothing helped. The fists landed on his face – the blue marks are still visible, particularly below his dead eyes, now blood-red. He also has wounds on his shoulders and both hands – from his attempts to ward off the brutal assault.

It all happened while he was in his bed after 4 A.M. on February 20.

A medical technician, Mizhar was employed in a laboratory belonging to the Palestinian Authority but had to take early retirement because of his deteriorating health. He speaks good English. He and his wife Iman have four sons, the oldest 18 and triplets of 16. Iman, who is 45, has cancer, for which she’s treated at Augusta Victoria Hospital in East Jerusalem, and in Jordan

Her condition is good. She joined the conversation in their house this week but grew pale as it proceeded and had to lie down several times, eyes closed, tears welling up. The trauma of her husband’s beating is still vivid, painful and hard for her to bear, perhaps even more than for him. Family members say she cowers in fright whenever the horrors of that night are recalled. They live in a well-kept home in the town of Dawha near Bethlehem.

That Wednesday, Munzer was awakened at about 4:45 A.M. by the sound of footsteps in the house. He woke his wife. He thought that maybe his sons were wandering about in the dark.

His wife opened her eyes and screamed. He didn’t understand what was going on. At first they thought burglars had broken in. But Iman saw shadowy figures who had entered their room, while red laser beams sliced through the darkness toward their bed.

The specters moved without sound. Later it would emerge that the troops had silently broken down the door. After an instant, Iman realized that the intruders were soldiers. They were masked, five or six of them in the bedroom, aiming their rifles at the couple. More troops waited outside.

Iman got out of the bed, her hair exposed to the eyes of the men who had invaded her room – a very sensitive matter for them, which Munzer refers to with pain. One soldier approached the bed and without a word punched Munzer in the face. Munzer is convinced that the assailant wore brass knuckles. His face began to bleed, with a lot of blood streaming from his nose, as well as from the wounds on his hands, which ultimately failed to protect his face. He saw nothing, of course.

The West Bank town of Dawha, near Bethlehem.
Alex Levac

Iman, standing next to the bed, went on shouting, but the soldiers blocked her from defending her husband. She tried to explain that he was blind and sick, but it was useless. Probably none of the soldiers understood Arabic. The soldier held Munzer’s head with one hand and hit him relentlessly with the other, she says. The others just stood there. The beating went on for at least five minutes.

A light in the bathroom scattered a little light into the room. Outside it was still dark, and the soldiers didn’t turn on the lights inside. Maybe that’s why they didn’t notice that the person being abused was helpless, blind and sick. Munzer asked the soldiers who they were. He got no reply. Iman told them she wanted to talk with the officer in charge. No one responded. Finally the blows ceased.

Iman sat Munzer up in the bed. He asked her where the children were. Then she helped him get up and led him toward a chair in the room. At first the soldiers wouldn’t allow Munzer, his face streaked with blood, to sit down. They didn’t ask him to identify himself and didn’t say who they were looking for.

Before this his eldest son, Talal, had awoken and heard his parents shouting that there were burglars in the house. Then, from the doorway, he saw his father bleeding. His brothers also woke up. The soldiers refused to let them enter their parents’ room and ordered them to raise their hands. One of the sons was overcome with dizziness and fell to the floor.

The soldiers were in the house for about 20 minutes. They didn’t search for anything. None of them thought to offer the wounded Munzer medical attention. Munzer says the worst thing is that a blind person doesn’t know when the next blow is coming.

Why did they hit him?

“You don’t know why?” his sister Maysoun, a bitter smile on her lips, asks us. “I’m afraid to talk because you’re Jews. They beat us all. The occupation beats us all. We are under occupation. This isn’t the first time they beat someone for no reason, and it’s not the last. What’s new about it is that this time they beat a blind person.”

One of the boys suggests a different explanation: Maybe they struck his father because he has a beard? True, not a full beard, but still a small beard that raises suspicion.

Munzer Mizhar with his wife, Iman, and his sister, at home in the West Bank town of Dawha.
Alex Levac

Maysoun is concerned that now her brother won’t be allowed to travel to Jordan in June for his regular medical treatments. We tried to reassure her – after all, he didn’t do anything.

In any case, back on that Wednesday morning, the soldiers ordered the four boys to get on their knees, faces pressed to the floor, and not to move. Then they left the house.

Munzer was taken to Hussein Hospital in Beit Jala. Since the event, he has suffered from pains in his jaw and has difficulty eating solid food. To see him lying on the sofa totally helpless, trying to find a comfortable position, the remnants of his feet bandaged, occasionally closing his eyes, is to understand what the soldiers wrought.

The next day the family learned that the soldiers had been looking for Fadi Hilweh, 20, who’s wanted by the army and the Shin Bet security service, though it’s not clear why. He lives on the floor above. The soldiers went there first, and when they didn’t find him, a Shin Bet agent known as “Capt. Nidal” ordered Hilweh’s mother to contact him and have him come home.

In the meantime, the soldiers went downstairs to the Mizhars. The neighbors say that they too warned the soldiers that Munzer was blind and sick, but no one was interested. Munzer wants to know why they didn’t knock on the door instead of invading the house. He would have opened the door and they could have seen for themselves that Hilweh wasn’t there.

Hilweh eventually came home and was arrested. Did the soldiers think that Munzer was the wanted person, so they beat him? Even in the dark, no one could mistake a sick, blind man of 47 for a 20-year-old. “Maybe they thought [the wanted man] was Munzer, and maybe they’re just violent criminals,” Maysoun says. Musa Abu Hashhash, a field researcher for the B’Tselem human rights group, says quietly, “This is the most shocking case I’ve ever documented.”

The IDF Spokesman’s Office made the following statement to Haaretz: “During an operation to apprehend a wanted individual in Bethlehem, information was received that the wanted person was inside a particular building, and a search was undertaken there. During the search, a Palestinian woman tried to prevent one of the fighters from reaching a Palestinian man in the room that the fighter wanted to inspect. The fighter tried to check the Palestinian man, who reacted by grabbing at his body and his weapon, and shouted and acted disruptively. The fighter pushed the Palestinian aggressively, trying to get him under control, and as a result the man was injured. At this stage the fighter realized that the man was blind, and was not the wanted person, and tried to calm him down while allowing the man’s wife to attend to him immediately. The incident was investigated and appropriate conclusions were drawn.”

Iman has been in a state of depression and constant fear since that night. The boys ask whether the soldiers will come back. The family has added an extra lock to the front door. Munzer can only focus on his illness and his pain. He wakes up each every night imagining that he hears footsteps in the dark. He’s certain that the soldiers are returning to give him another thrashing.

Corbyn calls for UK to condemn israel’s (apartheid state) targeting of Palestinians

Corbyn calls for UK to condemn Israel’s targeting of Palestinians

MEMO | March 2, 2019
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn [Chatham House/Flickr]

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn [Chatham House/Flickr]

Head of the British Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn has called for the UK government to condemn Israel’s killing of Palestinians as well as to freeze arms sales to the occupation state.

His remarks came in the wake of a UN report which found that Israel might have committed war crimes against Palestinians.

On Twitter, Corbyn wrote: “The UN says Israel’s killings of demonstrators in Gaza – including children, paramedics and journalists – may constitute ‘war crimes or crimes against humanity’”.

“The UK government must unequivocally condemn the killings and freeze arms sales to Israel.”

The UN report, published earlier this week, said: “The Israeli security forces killed and maimed Palestinian demonstrators who did not pose an imminent threat of death or serious injury to others when they were shot, nor were they directly participating in hostilities,” adding that the protests had been “civilian in nature”.

Report: Israel killed 8 Palestinians, wounded 810 in February

 

Hamas: israel (apartheid state) must be held accountable for Gaza crimes

Source

In this file photo taken on October 05, 2018 Palestinian paramedics carry a wounded protester during clashes with Israeli forces east of Gaza City. (Photo by AFP)In this file photo taken on October 05, 2018 Palestinian paramedics carry a wounded protester during clashes with Israeli forces east of Gaza City. (Photo by AFP)

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas says Israel must be fully held accountable for crimes it has committed in the besieged Gaza Strip.

The request came after an investigation mandated by the UN Human Rights Council found that Israeli troops may have committed “crimes against humanity” in response to Palestinian protests in Gaza.

In the UN report released on Thursday, chair of the UN Independent Commission of Inquiry Santiago Canton said Israeli soldiers have breached international human rights in confronting the Gaza protest rallies.

Tensions erupted in Gaza in March 30, 2018, which marked the start of a series of protests dubbed the “Great March of Return,” demanding the right to return for those driven out of their homeland.

The clashes reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with the US embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to the occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.

The violence left 189 Palestinians dead and more than 6,100 others injured between March 30 and December 31, 2018, the report said.

Palestinian sources say nearly 270 protesters have been killed by Israeli troops since the beginning of the rallies.

Later on Thursday, Hamas issued a statement on the UN report, denouncing the Tel Aviv regime for the crimes it has committed against Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip.

“The report indicates beyond any doubt that the Israeli occupation has committed clear war crimes against the Palestinians who came out to protest peacefully to demand the right of return and lift the siege,” said Bassem Naim, a senior Hamas official.

He also called on “the international community to hold the Israeli occupation accountable for the war crimes that it continues to commit against the Palestinians.”

The “March of Return” demonstrations are held every week to demand the right to return for the Palestinians driven out of their homeland by Israeli aggression.

They also demand a halt to Israel’s inhumane blockade of the Gaza Strip, which has deprived its roughly two million inhabitants of many basic commodities.

Israeli forces use live ammunition against protesters in Gaza which has been under a crippling siege since 2007 and witnessed three wars since 2008.

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism on Palestinians (21 February – 27 February)

PCHR Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations (21 – 27 February 2019)

01 Mar 6:13 AM

Israeli forces continued with systematic crimes, in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), for the week of 21 – 27 February, 2019.

Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip, and killed a Palestinian child in eastern Gaza City. 117 civilians, including 19 children, eight women, a journalist, and a paramedic, were wounded. The injuries of three were reported serious.

Shooting:

 

In the Gaza Strip, the Israeli forces continued to use lethal force against the participants in the peaceful protests organized along the Gaza Strip borders, which witnessed the peaceful protests for the 48th week along the eastern and northern border area of the Gaza Strip. They also continued to use force as well during the incursions into the West Bank.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child and wounded 117 civilians, including 19 children, 8 women, a journalist, and a paramedic, while participating in the Return March. The injury of three of them was reported serious. In the West Bank, 4 civilians, including a child, were wounded by the Israeli forces in different shooting incidents.

 

In the Gaza Strip, in new crime of excessive use of force, on 22 February 2019, Israeli forces killed Yousef al-Dayiah (14), from al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City. Yousef was wounded at approximately 16:50 after being hit with a live bullet to the chest while present 50 meters away from the border fence, east of al-Shuja’aiyia neighborhood. His death was declared at 18:10.

 

In the same context, Israeli forces wounded 117 civilians, including 19 children, 8 women, a journalist, and a paramedic. The injury of three of them was reported serious.

 

 

Injuries in the Gaza Strip from 21 to 27 February 2019 According to the Governorate

 

Governorate Injuries
Total Children Women Journalists Paramedics Critical Injuries
Northern Gaza Strip 29 6 4 0 0 2
Gaza City 51 7 4 0 0 0
Central Gaza Strip 13 2 0 0 0 0
Khan Yunis 22 4 0 1 1 1
Rafah 2 0 0 0 0 0
Total 117 19 8 1 1 3

 

  • As part of targeting the Palestinian fishermen in the sea, the Israeli forces continued to escalate their attacks against the Palestinian fishermen, indicating the on-going Israeli policy to target their livelihoods. During the reporting period, PCHR documented 11 incidents were as follows: 6 incidents in western al-Sodaniyia shore, 4 incidents off al-Waha resort and 1 incident off Khan Yunis shore.

 

  • As part of targeting the border areas, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel, east of al-Shawkah village, east of Rafah, opened fire at agricultural lands.

 

  • On 23 February 2019, =Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel, east of Khan Yunis, opened fire at agricultural lands, east of Khuza’ah village.

 

  • On 25 February 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence with Israel, opened fire at Palestinian shepherds, east of Dir al-Balah in the center of the Gaza Strip. On 26 February 2019, the Israeli shooting recurred at agricultural lands, east of Dir al-Balah in the center of the Gaza Strip. No casualties and damages to property were reported.

 

  • In the West Bank, Israeli forces wounded four Palestinian civilians, including a child and a journalist, in different shooting incidents.

 

Incursions:

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 81 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During those incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 55 Palestinians, including 3 children. Moreover, the Israeli forces conducted a wide-scale arrest campaign in occupied East Jerusalem, where they arrested 73 civilians, including a child. Among the arrestees were the governor of Jerusalem, the two leaders Khader ‘Adnan and Tareq Qa’dan, and the two sheikhs ‘Abed al-‘Azim Suhlob and Najeh Bakirat. Moreover, the Israeli forces insulted Palestinian civilians, whose houses were stormed in addition to confiscating their money and vehicles.

 

In the Gaza Strip, on 24 February 2019, Israeli forces moved around 100 meters into the west of the border fence with Israeli, east of al-Buriej Camp in the center of the Gaza Strip.

 

On 26 February 2019, the Israeli forces moved 100 meters into the southeast of Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip. The Israeli vehicles leveled and combed lands previously leveled.

 

Israeli Forces continued their settlement activities, and the settlers continued their attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property

 

  • As part of Israeli settlers’ attacks and demolition, on 21 February 2019, Israeli soldiers accompanied with the Israeli Civil Administration Officer uprooted 300 olive seedlings planted 2 years ago from a plot of land belonging to al-Warasnah and al-‘Ayaydah familes in Was Aseer area, east of al-Shayyoukh village, north of Hebron. The soldiers confiscated the seedlings under the pretext that the land belongs to the state lands.

 

On 27 February 2019, Israeli forces moved into Khelet al-Dabi’ village, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. They uprooted 50 olive seedlings planted a year ago from a plot of land belonging to ‘Ali Mohamed Jaber Dababsah.

 

  • As part of the Israeli settlers’ attacks against the Palestinians civilians and their property, PCHR’s fieldworkers documented during the reporting period 4 attacks carried out by Israeli settlers. Those attacks were as follows:

 

On 21 February 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Talmoun” settlement, punctured the tires of 10 vehicles belonging to the residents of Ras Karkar village, west of Ramallah. They also wrote 2 racist slogans and drew David Star on 2 of the mentioned vehicles.

 

On the same day, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Yatizhar” settlement, attacked ‘Oreef village, south of Nablus from the eastern side. The settlers were under the Israeli forces’ protection. The settlers threw stones at Palestinian civilians, who gathered to confront the setters. As a result, Hamam Anwar ‘Abed al-Hafiz Shehahda (18), was hit with a stone to the right leg, causing rupture in ligaments and fracture in his right leg.

 

On 22 February 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Bani Qadim “ and “ Asfar“ settlement, which is established on Palestinian civilians’ lands, east of al-Shayyoukh village, north of Hebron, uprooted 200 olive seedlings planted 2 years ago in Mares Ras al-Hait area.

 

On 23 February 2019, an Israeli settler attacked Husam ‘Abed al-Raheem Abu Hadeed (48) and punched him while heading to his work in the Hebron Rehabilitation Committee.

Use of Force against Demonstrations in Protest against the U.S. President’s Decision to Recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel:

 

Israeli forces continued its excessive use of lethal force against peaceful demonstration organized by Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and it was named as “The Great March of Return and Breaking Siege.” The demonstration was in protest against the U.S. President Donald Trump’s declaration to move the U.S. Embassy to it. According to PCHR fieldworkers’ observations, the border area witnessed large participation by Palestinian civilians as the Israeli forces continued to use upon highest military and political echelons excessive force against the peaceful demonstrators, though the demonstration were fully peaceful. The demonstration was as follows during the reporting period:

 

 

Gaza Strip:

 

 

 

On Friday, 22 February 2019; the 48th week of the March of Return and Breaking Siege activities, Israeli forces wounded 117 civilians, including 19 children, 8 women and a paramedic. The injuries of three of them were reported as serious. The incidents were as follows:

 

  • Northern Gaza City: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of 29 civilians, including six children and four women. Sixteen of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel, eight were directly hit with tear gas canisters and five with rubber bullets. The injuries of two of them were reported serious while the others’ injuries were between moderate and minor.

 

  • Gaza Strip: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the killing of Yussuf Sa’eed Hussein al-Daya (14), from Zeitoun neighborhood, east Gaza City. At approximately 16:30, Yussuf was hit with a live bullet to the chest while he was around 50 meters away from the border fence, east of Shuja’iyya neighborhood. His death was declared at 18:10. Furthermore, 51 civilians, including seven children and four woman were wounded. Twenty-three of them were hit were hit with live bullets and shrapnel, 25 with were directly hit with tear gas canisters and three with rubber bullets.

 

  • Central Gaza Strip: The Israeli shooting and throwing tear gas canisters at Palestinian demonstrators, which continued until 17:30, resulted in the injury of 13 civilians. Eight of them were hit with a live bullet and shrapnel and five were directly hit with tear gas canisters.

 

 

  • Khan Yunis: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators in Khuza’a village resulted in the injury of 22 civilians, including four children and a paramedic. Four of them were hit with live bullets and shrapnel and 18 were directly hit with tear gas canisters. Doctors classified the injury of one of them as serious others’ injuries were between moderate and minor. The wounded paramedic was identified as Fares Hassouna Ahmad al-Qedra (30), who was hit with a tear gas canister to the head, and the wounded journalist was identified as Muneeb Sameer Ahmad Abu Hatab (23), who was hit with a tear gas canister to the chest.

 

  • Rafah: The Israeli shooting at Palestinian demonstrators resulted in the injury of two civilians with live bullets and shrapnel.

 

 

 

West Bank:

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, on 22 February 2019, a peaceful demonstration started in front of ‘Ali al-Bakka’ Mosque. Dozens of civilians, from Hebron, along with local and international human rights defenders participated in the demonstration to commemorate the Cave of the Patriarchs massacre “the Ibrahimi Mosque massacre”. This massacre was carried out by an Israeli settler namely Baruch Goldstein against the worshipers at al-Ibrahimi Mosque on 25 February 1994. The demonstrators also called for opening al-Shohadah Street, which was closed since the mentioned date. The demonstration entitled: “Dismantle the Ghetto” and organized by national parties in the city. The participants raised Palestinian flags and banners calling for ending the closure in the center of Hebron and chanted national slogans. They then arrived at the municipality old building near Ossama Ibn al-Monqeth School and gathered, while a large force of Israeli soldiers were in the place. After that, the participants headed to the entrance to the closed al-Shuhada Street, where Shotir (al-Shuhahda) military checkpoint established. They chanted slogans for around 15 minutes in front of the checkpoint before throwing stone at the soldiers. Dozens of Israeli border guard officers fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the participants and stone-throwers and chased them on Wad al-Tuffah Street. As a result, many participants suffered tear gas inhalation. In the meantime, the Israeli border guard officers attacked press crews and prevented them from approaching the checkpoint. Moreover, the Israeli border guard officers pushed the participants by hands and threatened a number of them of opening fire at them if they present in the area. The young men continued to throw stones at the Israeli border guard officers, who fired rubber bullets at them. A number of the Israeli border guard officers surrounded the press crews, forced them to retreat and fired sound bombs at them. As a result, Mashhour Hassan al-Wahwah (35), a photojournalist at the Palestine News Agency “Wafa”, sustained shrapnel wound to his left foot. A journalist, Moss’ab Shawer al-Tamimy, said to the PCHR’s fieldworker that the Israeli border guard officers violently attacked the journalists, pushed them and shouted at them. He added that an Israeli border guard officer pointed the rifle at his chest and threatened him of opening fire at him if he would not leave. He added that the journalists were forced to leave after firing a sound bomb, which deliberately fell over them.

 

  • Following the Friday prayer, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international human rights defenders headed to al-Naqar agricultural area, which is located in the northern side of al-Moghir village, northeast of Ramallah, in order to peacefully protest against Israeli settlers’ attempts to seize and confiscate Palestinians’ lands. When the Palestinian civilians arrived at the area, Israeli soldiers fired live and rubber bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at the demonstrators. As a result, 3 civilians, including a child, were hit with live bullets and taken via a PRCS ambulance to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to receive treatment.
  • Efforts to Create A Jewish majority

 

 

Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it:

 

 

 

 

Arrests and Incursions:

 

  • On Thursday, 21 February 2019, Israeli forces arrested 4 Palestinian civilians, from occupied Jerusalem, claiming that they participated in opening al-Rahma Gate. The arrested civilians identified as Fadi al-Motwer, Hijazi Abu Subieh, Jehad Qus, and Murad Misk were then taken to an investigation center in the city.

 

  • On Friday, 22 February 2019, Israeli forces raided dozens of houses in occupied East Jerusalem and its suburbs. They then arrested 38 civilians and took them to an investigation center. PCHR keeps the names of the arrested civilians.

 

  • On Saturday, 23 February 2019, Israeli forces raided many houses in occupied East Jerusalem and its suburbs. They then arrested 4 civilians under the pretext of participating in opening al-Rahma Gate, which was closed since 2003 upon a court decision, in al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City. The arrested civilians were identified as Naser Qus, Head of Palestinian Prisoner’s Club; ‘Ali ‘Ajjaj; Hussni al-Kilani; and Samer al-Qabbani, a guard at the al-Aqsa Mosque.

 

  • On Sunday, 24 February 2019, Israeli forces arrested Shiekh ‘Abed al-‘Azim Suhlob, Khateeb of al-Aqsa Mosque; and Shiekh Najeh Bakirat; Director of Heritage Foundation  at al-Aqsa Mosque. Both of them were arrested under the pretext of participating in opening al-Rahma Gate. The Israeli authorities handed them a decision to deport them from the al-Aqsa Mosque for 7 days.

 

  • On Tuesday, 26 February 2019, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Izariyia village, east of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses, from which they arrested Mahmoud Khakled Damdoum (25) and Ahmed Jawad Othman (14).

 

  • On Wednesday, 27 February 2019, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched a house belonging to the governor of Jerusalem ‘Adnan Gaith and arrested them. He was then taken to al-Maskobiyia Police Center in West Jerusalem. On the same day evening, the Israeli forces released him upon the Magistrate Court decision.

 

  • On Wednesday, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Issawiyia village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched dozens of houses, arrested 22 civilians and then took them to investigation centers. PCHR keeps the names of the arrested civilians.

 

 

Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property

 

 

Israeli forces’ attacks:

 

  • On Thursday, 21 February 2019, Israeli soldiers accompanied with the Israeli Civil Administration Officer uprooted 300 olive seedlings planted 2 years ago from a plot of land belonging to al-Warasnah and al-‘Ayaydah familes in Was Aseer area, east of al-Shayyoukh village, north of Hebron. The soldiers confiscated the seedlings under the pretext that the land belongs to the state lands. It should be noted that it was the second time that the Israeli forces and settlers attacked the lands. In February 2019, the Israeli settlers uprooted 400 olive seedlings from the mentioned plot of land. Before their withdrawal, they handed a notice to the family members, who arrived at the area, ordering them to evacuate the land during 45 days and challenge before the competent authorities.

 

  • At approximately 13:00 on Thursday, Israeli forces accompanied with military vehicles and a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration moved into Ethna, west of Hebron, and stationed in the western area. The Israeli Civil Administration officer handed Tayseer Mohamed Tamizah a notice to stop construction work in a 50-sqaure-meter agricultural room built with bricks, under the pretext of non-licensing.

 

  • At approximately 11:00 on Monday, 25 February 2019, Israeli forces accompanied with 2 vehicles and a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration moved into Qinan Nayyas area, east of al-Shayyoukh village, north of Hebron. The Israeli Civil Administration officer handed 3 civilians notices to stop construction work in their houses, under the pretext of non-licensing in area classified as Area C, according to Oslo Agreement. It should be noted that the Israeli authorities targeted the lands of the mentioned area. In 2015, the Israel authorities declared the confiscation of 100 dunums from those lands under the pretext of being state lands. The notices were as follows:
    • A 180- square-meter house built of concrete and belongs to Mohamed Hamdan Hammad Haliyqah (32).
    • A 150-sqaure-meter under-construction house built of concrete and belong to Ahmed Jaber Mohamed Warasnah (28).
    • A 70-sqaure-meter house built of concrete and belongs to Mohamed Ahmed Warasnah (50).

 

  • At approximately 08:00 on Wednesday, 27 February 2019, Israeli forces moved into Khelet al-Dabi’ village, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. They uprooted 50 olive seedlings planted a year ago from a plot of land belonging to ‘Ali Mohamed Jaber Dababsah. Khelet al-Dabi’ village is located in the east of Yatta village, where 100 persons live. Most of the village’s houses are built with bricks and roofed with tine plates. The Israeli forces handed the village residents notices to stop construction work in addition to demolition notices. The Israeli forces also handed the residents decisions to evacuate their lands under the pretext of being state lands.

 

Israeli settlers’ attacks:

 

  • At Thursday dawn hours, on 21 February 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “ Talmoun” settlement, punctured the tires of 10 vehicles belonging to the residents of Ras Karkar village, west of Ramallah. They also wrote 2 racist slogans and drew David Star on 2 of the mentioned vehicles. Akram Abu Fakhidah said to PCHR’s fieldworker that when they checked the surveillance cameras fixed on his shop door, it turned out that 2 masked persons one of them carrying a bag wrote slogans and punctured the tires of his truck. He added that the two persons wandered on the street, punctured the tires of vehicles parked on the street sides and wrote racist slogans. Akram stressed that the two persons were settlers because they wrote slogans in Hebrew and drew David Star. The attacked vehicles belong to:
    • Hamidan Mohamed Mahmoud Dar Sa’d.
    • Sa’d Mohamed Dar Sa’d.
    • Akram Abu Fakhidah.
    • Montaser Nofal.
    • Kareem Saleh Dar Sa’d.
    • Adham Mazloum.

 

  • At approximately 13:30 on Thursday, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Yatizhar” settlement, attacked ‘Oreef village, south of Nablus from the eastern side. The settlers were under the Israeli forces’ protection. The settlers threw stones at Palestinian civilians, who gathered to confront the setters. As a result, Hamam Anwar ‘Abed al-Hafiz Shehahda (18), was hit with a stone to the right leg, causing rupture in ligaments and fracture in his right leg. He was then taken to Rafidia Hospital in Nablus.

 

  • On Friday, 22 February 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, from “Bani Qadim “ and “ Asfar“ settlement, which is established on Palestinian civilians’ lands, east of al-Shayyoukh village, north of Hebron, uprooted 200 olive seedlings planted 2 years ago in Mares Ras al-Hait area. The olive seedlings belong to al-Warasnah Family. Yousef Warasnah (47) said to PCHR’s fieldworker that: “My family owns hundreds of dumuns in eastern al-Shayyoukh village. In the previous years, we planted part of the land with olive seedlings and reclaimed another part through funded projects. Two months ago, we planted 200 olive seedlings cost NIS 2300. On Friday, 23 February 2019, I headed with my family to plant olive seedlings. When we arrived at the land, we found the olive seedlings planted 2 months ago were uprooted and damaged. The Palestinian shepherds told me that the Israeli settlers uprooted the seedlings and damaged them.”

 

 

  • At approximately 07:30 on Saturday, 23 February 2019, an Israeli settler, who lives in a settlement outpost in Hebron’s Old City, attacked Husam ‘Abed al-Raheem Abu Hadeed (48) and punched him while heading to his work in the Hebron Rehabilitation Committee. As a result, he sustained bruises, swelling over left side of head and severe pain in his jaw. Husam said to PCHR’s fieldworker that: “I was heading to my workplace in Hebron Rehabilitation Committee, where I work as a warehouse secretary. I passed through Abu al-Rish checkpoint, south of the al-Ibrahimi Mosque. When I arrived at al-Shari’a Court, I saw a number of Israeli soldiers along with an Israeli settler in his twenties stood in the area. After I walked around 20 meters, the settler chased me and cursed me. Few minutes later, the settler attacked and punched me to my head. I shouted at the Israeli border guard officers, who were 20 meters away. They came and took the settler. I headed to my work and then went to a medical center, because I was suffering from swelling over the left side of my head and severe pain in my jaw.”

 

 

  • Recommendations to the International Community

 

PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 11 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.

  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC this year to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area.

Fully detailed document available at the official website of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR).

 

Four Young Palestinian Lives Snuffed Out Every Month for The Past Year at The Hands of israeli (apartheid state) Soldiers

Four Young Palestinian Lives Snuffed Out Every Month for The Past Year at The Hands of Israeli Soldiers

By CJ Werleman | American Herald Tribune | February 28, 2019

Last Friday, Yousef a-Dava, a 15-year old Palestinian boy was shot and killed by Israeli snipers, becoming the 48th child slain in Gaza by Israeli security forces since the Great Return March began nearly 12 months ago.

“He was peacefully protesting for a better future, raising the Palestinian flag, is the Palestinian flag a weapon?” asked his grief-stricken sister, Nariman al-Daya, in an interview with Middle East Eye.

His death was every bit as gruesome as it was unjustifiably atrocious, with eyewitnesses explaining how he “tried to stand up, walk a couple more steps” before falling to the ground again, after the bullet fired by an Israeli sniper “entered Yousef’s body, exploded hear his heart, exited from his back” and injured another man who was standing behind him.

Less than one hour later he was pronounced dead at al-Shifa Hospital after an emergency operation failed to revive him.

What other democratic ally do we allow 48 unarmed children to be shot and killed for flying a flag or kite in an open field, one that is ring-fenced by high-voltage electric currents, spot-and-strike machine gun posts, armored tanks and dozens of the world’s most lethal military marksmen?

If this were happening in Poland, Spain, or Portugal, both the United States and United Nations would’ve moved quickly to impose economic sanctions, while calls to invade and bomb would be heard far louder than a mere whisper, but this is Israel, the “Middle East’s only democracy,” so the entirely erroneous propaganda tagline goes.

48 murdered children equates to four young lives snuffed out every month for the past year at the hands of Israeli soldiers, who in no way felt threatened by these now slain youngsters. Unless, of course, you think children throwing rocks from inside a cage at armored vehicles positioned hundreds of meters away on the other side fortified fences and barricades is a threat to anyone or anything, which it clearly it isn’t!

Thus these deaths are to be identified for what they truly are: the cold-blooded murder of innocent and non-threatening children.

Of course, nowhere in the Western media is this reality framed in this accurate way. Instead we are fed headlines, or rather footnotes from the likes of The New York Times that read, “15-year-old boy killed in Gaza today,” without identifying the benign circumstances that led to his death, with newspaper editors doing their very best to falsely portray flag waving and rock-throwing protesters to be on equal footing to the most sophisticated military force in the Middle East.

It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway, that if a population of 2 million predominately Jews or Christians were held in an open-air prison, which is precisely what Gaza is, and then bombed, strafed, droned, and shelled periodically, with children shot dead by snipers wearing the flag of a Muslim majority country, then there’d be no other issue the Western media would be talking about.

On Thursday, the United Nations published a report concluding, “Israeli soldiers committed violations of international human rights and humanitarian law,” adding that “some of those violations may constitute war crimes of crimes against humanity.”

“Many young person’s lives have been altered forever,” contends the United Nations Human Rights Council. “122 people have had a limb amputated since March 30 last year. Twenty of these amputees are children.”

Moreover, these deaths scratch only the surface of Israel’s savage war on Palestinian children. When Israel invaded Gaza in the summer of 2014, Palestinian children represented 25% of all civilians killed, with human rights groups documenting the deaths of 504 are under the age of 18.

Then there are the 500-700 Palestinian children who are detained each year in the Israeli military court system, some indefinitely, with most held and prosecuted on the charge of stone throwing.

It is in these Israeli military detention centers where some of the most egregious crimes against Palestinian children take place, with two-thirds reporting Israeli soldiers subjected them to violence and physical abuse.

Several years ago, UNICEF published a report that documented Israel’s systematic and systemic abuse of detained Palestinian children, concluding that “the ill-treatment of children who come in contact with the military detention system appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalized throughout the process, from the moment of arrest to indictment of the child, the conviction and issuing of the verdict.”

The authors of the report also observed how child detainees were often arrested in the middle of the night, denied access to a lawyer or parents prior or during interrogation, denied right to remain silent, alongside credible claims Palestinian children were raped or threatened with rape or execution.

Ultimately Israel gets away with these atrocities because its violence and crimes against the Palestinian people takes place inside a media vacuum, with mainstream networks and publications giving a head glance towards the occupation and conflict only in moments where Palestinians, who are denied the right to resist Israel’s violence and illegalities peacefully, respond with violence of their own.

Until such time the world’s media and international community holds Israel accountable for its violations of international law and denial of human rights to the Palestinian people, it’ll continue to murder children as young as 2 years of age with total and complete impunity

No Justification for israel (apartheid state) to Shoot Protesters with Live Ammunition: Report

No Justification for Israel to Shoot Protesters with Live Ammunition: Report
By United Nations Human Rights Council

GENEVA (28 February 2019): The United Nations Independent Commission of Inquiry on the protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory today presented its findings. The report focuses on the demonstrations in the Gaza Strip, referred to as the “Great March of Return and the Breaking of the Siege”.

“The Commission has reasonable grounds to believe that during the Great March of Return, Israeli soldiers committed violations of international human rights and humanitarian law. Some of those violations may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity, and must be immediately investigated by Israel,” said the Chair of the Commission, Santiago Canton of Argentina.

The Commission was mandated by the Human Rights Council in May 2018 to investigate all alleged violations and abuses of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, in the context of the large-scale protests that began in Gaza on 30 March 2018. The Commission comprises Santiago Canton of Argentina (Chair), Sara Hossain of Bangladesh and Betty Murungi of Kenya.

More than 6,000 unarmed demonstrators were shot by military snipers, week after week at the protest sites by the separation fence.

The Commission investigated every killing at the designated demonstration sites by the Gaza separation fence on official protest days. The investigation covered the period from the start of the protests until 31 December 2018. 189 Palestinians were killed during the demonstrations inside this period. The Commission found that Israeli Security Forces killed 183 of these protesters with live ammunition. Thirty-five of these fatalities were children, while three were clearly marked paramedics, and two were clearly marked journalists.

According to the Commission’s data analysis, the Israeli Security Forces injured 6,106 Palestinians with live ammunition at the protest sites during this period. Another 3,098 Palestinians were injured by bullet fragmentation, rubber-coated metal bullets or by hits from tear gas canisters. Four Israeli soldiers were injured at the demonstrations. Four Israeli soldiers were injured at the demonstrations. One Israeli soldier was killed on a protest day but outside the protest sites.

“There can be no justification for killing and injuring journalists, medics, and persons who pose no imminent threat of death or serious injury to those around them. Particularly alarming is the targeting of children and persons with disabilities,” said Sara Hossain. “Many young persons’ lives have been altered forever. 122 people have had a limb amputated since 30 March last year. Twenty of these amputees are children.”

The Commission found reasonable grounds to believe that Israeli snipers shot at journalists, health workers, children and persons with disabilities, knowing they were clearly recognizable as such.

Unless undertaken lawfully in self-defence, intentionally shooting a civilian not directly participating in hostilities is a war crime. The Commission found reasonable grounds to believe that individual members of the Israeli Security Forces, in the course of their response to the demonstrations, killed and injured civilians who were neither directly participating in hostilities, nor posing an imminent threat. These serious human rights and humanitarian law violations may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity.

The Commission took note of the Israeli claim that the protests by the separation fence masked “terror activities” by Palestinian armed groups. The Commission found however that the demonstrations were civilian in nature, with clearly stated political aims. Despite some acts of significant violence, the Commission found that the demonstrations did not constitute combat or military campaigns.

The applicable legal framework was thus based in international human rights law. This assessment did not change even though the commission’s investigation revealed that some demonstrators were members of organized armed groups.  Others were members of political parties.  International human rights law prohibits the use of force based solely on a person’s actual or alleged affiliation to any group, rather than their conduct.

The Commission found that some members of the Higher National Committee organising the protests, which includes Hamas representatives, encouraged or defended demonstrators’ use of indiscriminate incendiary kites and balloons, causing fear among civilians and significant damage to property in southern Israel. The Commission concluded that Hamas, as the de facto authority in Gaza, failed to prevent these acts.

The Commission conducted 325 interviews with victims, witnesses and sources, and gathered more than 8,000 documents. An integral part of the investigation was comprehensive analysis of social media, and of vast amounts of audio-visual material showing incidents, including drone footage.

The Commission was mandated by the UN Human Rights Council to focus on accountability and identify those responsible for violations and alleged international crimes.

“The Commission will place the relevant information in a confidential file to be handed over to the High Commissioner of Human Rights, to provide access to this information to national and international justice mechanisms. The International Criminal Court is already concerned with this situation,” said Betty Murungi.

As the one-year anniversary of the Great March of Return on 30 March draws closer, the Commissioners urged all concerned to exercise restraint.

The large-scale killing and maiming of 30 March last year, when 18 people were killed and over 700 people shot, and of 14 May, when 60 people were killed and over 1100 people shot, must not be repeated. “The shooting must stop,” said Sara Hossain.

“The onus is now on Israel to investigate every protest-related killing and injury, promptly, impartially and independently in accordance with international standards, to determine whether war crimes or crimes against humanity were committed, with a view to holding accountable those found responsible”, said Santiago Canton. “We also urge the organisers, the demonstrators, and the de facto authorities in Gaza, to ensure that the Great March of Return is entirely peaceful, as it is intended to be.”

“The Commission finds that these protests were a call for help from a population in despair”, Santiago Canton reminded. “Not only Israel but also the de facto authorities led by Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have responsibilities towards them. The Commission calls on Israel to lift the blockade of Gaza, and on all three duty bearers to comply with their responsibilities and improve the living situation in Gaza.”

The Israeli authorities did not respond to repeated requests by the Commission for information and access to Israel and to the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

A fuller report, containing detailed factual and contextual information and legal analysis will be published and presented to the Human Rights Council on 18 March 2019 in Geneva.

-ENDS

To access the Commission’s short report and for more information, visit the report’s webpage.

Media Contacts:
Johan Eriksson: +41 76 691 10 82, mediacoioptprotests@ohchr.org
Rolando Gómez: +41 22 917 97 11, rgomez@ohchr.org
Cédric Sapey: +41 22 917 9845, csapey@ohchr.org

Media interviews can be requested at number +41 22 917 81 82

B-roll for broadcasters can be downloaded here:
Video 1 (Incident Compilation at Gaza separation fence during protests)
Video 2 (Ahmad Abu Artema: the Reasons; The Voice from the Other Side of the Fence) [shotlist & storyline]
Video 3 (Minors injured) [shotlist & storyline]
More videos are also available on: http://www.youtube.com/c/UNHumanRightsCouncil

The press conference will be carried live on http://webtv.un.org/  and live broadcast

More broadcast material will be available at https://www.unmultimedia.org/tv/unifeed/

Outlaws openly running in israel’s (apartheid state) election

OUTLAWS OPENLY RUNNING IN ISRAEL’S ELECTION

Former MK Michael Ben-Ari, who heads Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) and could return to Knesset thanks to a Netanyahu-blessed union with Jewish Home, has ties to non-governmental organizations linked to Meir Kahane’s Kach Movement, outlawed in Israel and on US Treasury and State Department blacklists; to make matters worse, some of these NGOs get their funding from US Jews.

The Otzma Yehudit Party, including (L-R): Itamar Ben-Gvir, Michael Ben-Ari, Benzi Gopstein and Baruch Marzel (Photo: Avi Mualem)

The tangled web of Israel’s extreme right, American Jewry and the US terror blacklist

Yehuda Shohat

There were quite a few smiles in the Jewish Home party, the most moderate of the right-wing religious-Zionist factions, after most of its members voted in favor of teaming up with Ozma Yehudit (Jewish Power) in the upcoming April 9 elections. And thus in an almost off-hand manner, these politicians de facto joined forces with former members of Kach—a racist movement outlawed in Israel and featured on the list of terror organizations at both the US State Department and the US Treasury.

US Jews were quick to express their shock and outrage over the union and the involvement of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who put a lot of pressure on both sides and even made concessions of his own to make it happen.

Over the weekend, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and American Jewish Committee (AJC) issued harsh condemnation of the move, perhaps unaware that some of the funding for the organizations that succeeded Kach — with former members now directly linked to Otzma Yehudit —comes from US Jews, seemingly in violation of American anti-terror laws.

The Kach Movement, which was established by Rabbi Meir Kahane, and its younger sister organization Kahane Chai (Kahane Lives), which was founded after Kahane’s murder, were both outlawed in Israel following a terror attack carried out by Kach member Baruch Goldstein exactly 25 years ago, when he murdered 29 Palestinians at the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron.

But since then, members of Kach have continued operating in different NGOs and organizations, in seemingly legitimate ways, and recently also returned to the political field in the form of Otzma Yehudit.

One of the key players in this story is Ben-Zion “Benzi” Gopstein, the head of the anti-assimilation Lehava organization (which is not a registered organization). Behind Lehava hides a network of other organizations, in which Gopstein allegedly has or had direct involvement.

Under Gopstein’s leadership, Lahava leads a racist and inciting line against Israeli minorities. Four years ago, when he was serving as defense minister, Moshe Ya’alon considered declaring Lehava a terror organization. In November 2017, the State Prosecutor’s Office recommended charging Gopstein with incitement, and the case is now awaiting a decision by Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit.

The first organization with which Gopstein’s name is linked is “Hemla” (Compassion)—an NGO that purports to aid young women from broken homes who are “at risk of assimilation,” a euphemism for marrying Arab men. Shortly after Gopstein became involved with the organization, it started receiving a regular budget of hundreds of thousands of shekels from the Welfare Ministry, which the NGO uses to operate a hostel in Jerusalem for “at-risk” women and teenage girls.

A 2014 investigative report already found many connections between Hemla and former Kahane activists. For example, Baruch Ben-Yosef, who founded an association seeking to remove Kach from the terror organizations list, received funding from Hemla. A member of Hemla’s committee, Elyakim Neiman, also serves as the chairman of Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi, a Jerusalem seminary founded by Meir Kahane that is still considered a terror organization by the United States. Neiman is also among the founders of The Fund to Save the People of Israel, and when we sought to donate to Lehava, we were directed by Gopstein himself to The Fund to Save the People of Israel.

Gopstein was a paid employee of Hemla, working as a “lead PR in Israel”; he was also an authorized signatory at the NGO, alongside Elyakim Neiman. According to the NGO’s records, Gopstein was fired (although he says he quit), but it was nevertheless decided to “continue employing him for his assistance in raising funds for a probationary period,” which has since ended.

Who funds Hemla? Other than the Welfare Ministry, which in 2016 transferred over NIS 1 million to the NGO, we were able to uncover several other financers, such as the estate of the late Miriam Orin, the Love of Israel Fund, the “Your People’s Poor Fund,” and the Central Fund of Israel—an American fund headed by Jay Marcus.

The Central Fund of Israel, which doesn’t make its list of beneficiaries public, donated almost NIS 100,000 to Hemla in 2015, and tens of thousands of shekels in 2014. Many of the Americans who donated to the fund—both directly and indirectly—don’t know where the money eventually goes.

Another American organization that gives money to Hemla is the Traditional Fund, which also donates to a variety of right-wing organizations in Israel.

The Jewish idea

The second organization in the massive network is Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi (the Jewish Idea Yeshiva), which is listed as an NGO and was founded by Rabbi Meir Kahane in 1987 to spread his teachings. In addition to Kahane himself, other founders include Moshe Neiman, Michael Ben-Ari, Tiran Pollack, Gad Struman, Yekutiel (Mike) Ben-Yaakov and Baruch Marzel. The president of the yeshiva is Yehuda Kroizer and the CEO is Elyakim Neiman.

According to records from June 2018, Ben-Ari was a member of the audit committee of the NGO, which to this day remains on the US terror organizations list. In other words, it is illegal to donate to the organization, and Michael Ben-Ari, who could become a member of Israel’s parliament, is allegedly a member of an NGO on the US terror list.

From 2002 to 2005, the NGO reported the grants it gave out, with one of the main beneficiaries being Benzi Gopstein, whose wife Anat was a paid employee of the organization. In 2002, Gopstein got NIS 24,000 from the NGO, in 2004 the sum went up to NIS 26,000 and in 2005 it went back to NIS 24,000.

According to official records, Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi is funded by different American donors, among them two US organizations. The first is Charity of Light, a tax-exempt NGO that was first registered in New Jersey in 2001. Five years later, it became the Charity of Light – Hemla Fund. At the time, the NGO’s chairman was Levi Hazan, a known Kahanist who was sentenced to prison for his part in a 1984 shooting of a bus north of Ramallah, which left six Palestinians wounded.

The very same Hazan also appeared in the Israeli NGO Hemla’s records as a PR employee working abroad. Among the donors who gave money to this charity over the years is the Charitable Foundation of the IDT Corporation, an American telecommunications company founded by known Likud and Netanyahu donor Howard Jonas.

The second US donor organization is the American Friends of Yeshivat HaRaayon, an NGO registered in 1991 in Skokie, Illinois, which raises funds for Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi, despite the fact that the latter is on the US terror list. A possible loophole allowing donations is the NGO’s use of the yeshiva’s Hebrew name, rather than the English translation that appears in the US terror lists.

As of 2015, Levi Hazan was this NGO’s director as well. According to the NGO’s records, from 2011 the organization donated to Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi sums ranging between $44,000 and $136,000 every year. This too is seemingly a criminal offense violating three different prohibitions on funding for terror organizations.

“There are different definitions within the State Department’s list of terror organizations,” says David Saperstein, a former senior State Department official. “The leaders of the organizations on the list are subject to all of the limitations of the law. Donors to these organizations are breaking the law and are subject to criminal sanctions, even if they don’t know where the money they donated went to.”

‘Price tag’ situation room

The next organization is Chasdei Meir, which is headed by Gopstein himself, according to different reports. Our investigation found no evidence the organization is registered in Israel, only in the United States. When we called the phone number the organization lists for donations, the woman who answered the phone gave us the bank account number and PO box belonging to the NGO “Hemla – Aid for the Needy.” Later, we learned we could also donate to the organization through Hemla’s donations center.

This isn’t a trivial matter. Unlike Hemla, which seemingly only aids needy women, Chasdei Meir is an organization that aids “residents of the hilltops.” According to past reports, Chasdei Meir was part of the “price tag” vandalism situation room, which was established in 2011 to avenge the demolition of structures in the illegal West Bank outpost of Havat Gilad. The organization’s activity includes fundraising for the Hilltop Youth organization of extremist settlers, as well as planting trees near settlements and hills in the West Bank.

In 2010, Gopstein himself was quoted by Haaretz, saying “We have a group called the Chasdei Meir Charity Fund, which helps the outposts.” In a video Gopstein posted online in the past, he called for donations for Chasdei Meir to benefit activities in the West Bank.

The Chasdei Meir website was registered by Levi Hazan, and an examination of the organization’s funding sources found it raises tax-exempt funds in the US through Charity of Light. Conversely, the PO box and fax number on Chasdei Meir’s website belong to the HaRaayon HaYehudi NGO. An older version of the site included an address in the US, which is the same as the address listed for HaRaayon HaYehudi and Charity of Light.

The next NGO, The Fund to Save the People of Israel, was registered in 2011. Its declared objectives include the “fight against the phenomenon of assimilation; activity to benefit the victims of infiltrators and illegal migrant workers; activity and humanitarian aid; strengthening the settlement enterprise and the hold on the Land of Israel; legal assistance.”

The NGO’s founders are Elyakim Neiman, Yaron Adler, Israel Diskind, Ayala Ben-Gvir (Itamar Ben-Gvir’s wife), Benzi Gopstein, Levi Hazan and Matilda Harutz. According to its general assembly’s records from May 2018, Gopstein is an authorized signatory in the organization and is defined as the “NGO’s operator,” grossing NIS 66,764 annually.

The NGO’s email address is the same one that appeared in Chasdei Meir’s website—Gopstein’s personal email. One of the fund’s audit committee members was Yitzhak Gabbai, who was convicted and imprisoned for three years for his part in the arson attack at the Jewish-Arab school in Jerusalem.

As of 2016, the NGO’s incoming donations stood at some NIS 260,000 a year; among its donors over the years we found the Eretz Yisrael Shelanu Party (a far-right religious party founded by Baruch Marzel and Shalom Dov Wolpo), as well as the Segal Foundation for Israel, which was criticized by Israel’s Registrar of Associations for failing to do anything to reach its objectives.

‘Our fight is legal’

“Since the Kach Movement was outlawed, Kahane’s ideological successors have developed new systems to operate and get funding,” says Ran Cohen, one of the founders of the Democratic Bloc organization. “If they previously relied on political mechanisms, today they are using a network of NGOs that pose as charity and social organizations. In reality, they raise funds—both in Israel and abroad—to continue to incite and undermine the foundations of democracy. Money transferred from the state to such organizations is only one example of the way the government whitewashes Kahanism. The biggest example recently was the fact Netanyahu worked to ensure Gopstein and Marzel’s (Otzma Yehudit) party, which has Kahanist characteristics, gets into the Knesset.”

Benzi Gopstein offered the following response to the report: “These are lies. The goal of this report is to once again try to bring down the right-wing rule and prevent Otzma Yehudit from getting into the next Knesset. This won’t help; I will continue with the legal fight against assimilation in the Holy Land.”

Michael Ben-Ari offered the following response: “This is a collection of fabrications that have already been published and disproven years ago. But when the goal is to bring down the right-wing rule, journalistic ethics are being trampled.”

In an interesting coincidence, when we turned to the Hemla NGO for a response, we were directed to the Yeshiva HaRaayon HaYehudi call center.

Later, Hemla offered the following response: “For nearly 20 years, the NGO has been operating a hostel for at-risk Haredi teenage girls, who went through serious abuse (and you should know all about this topic), and with God’s help we are able to rehabilitate them and reintegrate them into society. The NGO deals with the social and rehabilitative field and has no ties to any political body.

“Benzi Gopstein finished working for the NGO in October 2014, and since then there have been no ties between him and Hemla – Aid for the Needy. Anat Gopstein finished working for the NGO in April 2015, and since then there have been no ties between her and the NGO. Unfortunately, the media has already slammed the holy work our dedicated staff does at the hostel several times, and we demand an end to dealing with this matter, which has been behind us for many years.”

The Welfare Ministry offered the following response: “Hemla won a tender to operate a hostel for at-risk teenage girls from the Haredi sector, who are directed to social services in local authorities. The funding given to the NGO is for the operation of the hostel only.”

Mairav Zonszein contributed to this story.

Netanyahu Finds israeli (apartheid state) Ultra-Right Parties Suited to His Political Purposes

Netanyahu Finds Israeli Ultra-Right Parties Suited to His Political Purposes

The members of Otsma Yehudit are thugs and some have been designated as terrorists, and Netanyahu has more stately manners. But their objectives and their actions are in perfect sync.

JERUSALEM, OCCUPIED PALESTINE As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu enters into an alliance with the Israeli equivalent of neo-Nazis, media outlets — including the Washington Post and The Forward — and even AIPAC express uneasiness. However, for Netanyahu, this political partnership makes sense ideologically and politically. Netanyahu shares the racist-nationalist ideology of these extremist groups and, since there is a mad rush to the right within Israel’s political parties, Netanyahu, wanting to win the race, is now in an alliance with the most right-wing group on the Israeli political map — and that is saying a lot!

The Partners

Otsma Yehudit, or Jewish Might, states in its party platform, in the “Enemies of Israel” section:

The fight against the enemies of Israel will be toal and without compromise. There will be no compromises or negotiations. The party will act to enforce Israeli sovereignty on all parts of Eretz Israel that were liberated in the 1967 war and it will work to sort out the status of the enemies of Israel in the Arab states that surround Israel.”

The platform also states that the party will act to see that all the enemies of Israel will emigrate and leave the country, returning to their countries of origin — and this out of a desire to keep Israel’s Jewish character. The party will fight without compromise to end the theft of land and will act to redeem the lands of Israel in the Naqab, the Galilee and elsewhere in the spirit of the JNF.

On the issue of Government and Morals, the charter states that the Jewish character of the state will take precedence over any “universal values:” “We do not wish to lose the Jewish state by war or peace or Western Democracy.”

To clarify some of the terminology, the “enemies of Israel” are the Palestinians, whom this party calls to expel. Their countries of origin are, according to this party, other Arab states. The general prevailing view among radical Zionists is that Palestine belongs to the Jews and that the Palestinians are invaders

The JNF, or Jewish National Fund, has been the major force behind Israel’s ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the covering of destroyed Palestinian villages with forests. On its website JNF claims that “We planted more than a quarter-billion trees in what was once a barren desert.” Which is true — except for the part about it being a barren desert. JNF further states that “We see the Negev and Galilee regions blooming with new families attracted by vibrant communities, meaningful work and affordable housing.” Again this is true — except for the fact that these new vibrant communities exclude the indigenous Palestinian Bedouin for whom the Naqab has been home since time immemorial. Furthermore, all of the development takes place on Bedouin lands.

Habayit Hayehudi (the Jewish Home) was established by Naftali Bennett, who now serves as Minister of Education. Bennett left the party to create a new party — a secular, right-wing party for “Israeli, right-wing Jews” — called “Yamin Hadash” or New Right.

Though one is a religious party using religious values as its core values, and the other calls for unity between religious and secular Israeli Jews, on the issue of the Land of Israel they are identical: The Land of Israel belongs to the Jews; Jews and only Jews have national rights on the land; there will be no compromises or negotiations on the land; settling the land with Jews is a national priority. They also claim they believe that minorities should have citizenship rights.

This last clause is problematic because if it is a Jewish state with Jewish symbols and priority is given to the settling of the land with Jews, this already negates the possibility that equal rights will be offered to the minorities. These minorities, who are the Palestinians, are in fact the majority between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea, so once again there is a clear inconsistency here that can be attributed to the fact that they have no intention of giving any rights to Palestinians.

In addition to that, Palestinians, being the indigenous people of the land, should be provided not only citizenship rights but national rights.

Though these two parties are now running against each other, it is likely that they will sit together in a coalition government once Netanyahu is elected.

 

The main player

The only stable party that remains significant in today’s Israeli political map is the Likud party, which is headed by Prime Minister Netanyahu. Its charter resembles that of the other parties, which so many find hard to stomach:

Protecting the rights of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel as an eternal and unquestionable right. Developing and settling all parts of the land of Israel and extending Israeli sovereignty onto all parts of the Land of Israel.”

The Likud too calls for equal rights to all citizens and encouraging minorities to be included in the state. Since the Likud has a history of governing otherwise, particularly in the last decade under the leadership of Prime Minister Netanyahu, it is clear that these calls are merely lip service.

 

Hypocrisy

In an interview I gave recently, I stated that the entire orchestra of people and organizations that criticize Netanyahu for his political alliance with these right-wing parties is pure hypocrisy. He shares their ideology and it makes political sense for him to align with them. Comparing them to the KKK or to Neo-nazis is not wrong, but one must remember that they are the cutting edge of Zionism and the State of Israel.

They are the “soldiers” who push the limits and allow the official state policies to move forward. The members of Otsma Yehudit are thugs and some have been designated as terrorists, and Netanyahu has more stately manners. But their objectives and their actions are in perfect sync.

Top Photo | An election campaign poster with the image of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lies among ballot papers at his party’s election headquarters, in Tel Aviv. Dan Balilty | AP

Miko Peled is an author and human rights activist born in Jerusalem. He is the author of “The General’s Son. Journey of an Israeli in Palestine,” and “Injustice, the Story of the Holy Land Foundation Five.”

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