According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR)'s Weekly Report, during the week of January 3rd – 9th, 2008, 22 Palestinians were killed and 117 injured by the Israeli military. PCHR Weekly Report: 22 Palestinians killed, 117 injured by Isra Of those killed this week, four were women, three were children, and 5 of the victims were from the same family. Of the 117 wounded, 48 are children and 5 are women.
Israeli forces conducted 33 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and 4 into the Gaza Strip. Israeli forces arrested 93 Palestinian civilians, including 14 children. In addition, troops razed 259 dunums of agricultural land and demolished 2 houses in the Gaza Strip. 20 dunums of land in the Jordan Valley were also razed. One Palestinian woman gave birth at an Israeli checkpoint this week, and eight Palestinians were abducted at checkpoints, including three children.
Throughout the reporting period, Israeli forces have continued to impose a total siege on the Palestinian territories, and have isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world and a humanitarian crisis has emerged.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
In the West Bank, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian boy and wounded 46 civilians, including 23 children and a woman, during the past week.
Another Palestinian civilian, a shepherd was killed by the explosion of a landmine left by Israeli forces on 6 January. The shepherd was killed in Wadi al-Maleh area in the northern Jordan Valley. The area is used by Israeli forces for military training. On 7 January, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian boy in al-Yamoun village, west of Jenin. They claimed he was shooting at them.
During the reporting period, 46 Palestinian civilians, including a woman and 23 children, were wounded by Israeli forces, thirty eight of whom were wounded by Israeli forces during a 3-day incursion into Nablus.
According to investigations conducted by PCHR, at approximately 01:55 on 3 January, Israeli forces, reinforced by 40 military vehicles and a number of bulldozers, moved into Nablus and neighboring refugee camps, and imposed a curfew. Israeli forces troops moved into the old city, and transformed a number of houses into military sites, from where they fired indiscriminately at anything that moved.
At approximately 06:00, Israeli forces imposed a curfew on the old city. They also besieged hospitals and obstructed the activities of medical crews. Israeli forces arrested a paramedic and fired a tear gas canister into an ambulance. At approximately 15:30 on Saturday, 5 January, Israeli forces troops set fire to a 120-square-meter, 2-storey store belonging to Lu’ai Mohammed Samaru in the old city. Samaru estimated his loss at approximately US$ 250,000.
When Palestinian civilians in Nablus demonstrated during the 3-day military operation, Israeli troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets at the demonstrators, wounding 38 civilians, including 19 children. Israeli forces also arrested 31 Palestinian civilians, including a child and a paramedic, during house raids.
On Thursday, 3 January, Israeli forces troops fired at an ambulance of the Palestinian Union of Medial Relief Committees and arrested Taher Zuhair al-Kousa, 28, a local paramedic, after he had evacuated a patient to hospital.
On the same day, Israeli forces troops stopped an ambulance belonging to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society in Rafidya neighborhood in the west of Nablus city. They humiliated the medical crew and forced the ambulance to stop between them and Palestinian children who were throwing stones at them. Israeli forces troops then threw a tear gas canister into the ambulance.
On Friday, 4 January, Israeli forces raided Rafidya Hospital in the west of Nablus city. They searched for Ahmed Abu Hantash, 38, a civilian who had been wounded by 3 rubber-coated metal bullets in his head when he was fired upon by Israeli soldiers on his way out of a mosque after praying. An Israeli soldier, who is apparently a doctor, entered the operating room where doctors were performing surgery on Abu Hantash, and remained there for 10 minutes. Israeli troops then left the hospital.
The Nablus invasion was just one of 33 military incursions carried out by Israeli forces into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During these incursions, Israeli forces abducted 93 Palestinian civilians, including a woman and 13 children.
Israeli settlement activities:
Israeli forces have continued settlement activities, and Israeli settlers living in the West Bank have, in violation of international humanitarian law, continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces razed 20 dunums of agricultural land in the central Jordan Valley for the purpose of settlement expansion.
The Israeli Ministry of Housing also decided to build 1,000 housing unit in Abu Ghneim area near Bethlehem.
Israeli Annexation Wall:
Israeli forces have continued to construct the Annexation Wall inside West Bank territory. During the reporting period, Israeli forces used force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders on Friday, 4 January, to protest the construction of the Wall in Bil’in village, west of Ramallah, and in Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron.
In Bil’iin village, west of Ramallah, scores of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders demonstrated against the construction of the Wall. Israeli troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators, and violently beat them. As a result, 4 Palestinian civilians were wounded. Additionally, dozens of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation or sustained bruises.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 4 January, scores of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders demonstrated in Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, to protest the construction of the Wall. Hazem Bader, a correspondent with the Associated Press, and 2 human rights defenders sustained bruises from rubber-coated metal bullets fired by Israeli forces.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces killed 20 Palestinians, including 5 members of one family, and wounded 71 others, including 26 children and 4 women.
On 3 January, Israeli forces moved into the areas of al-Zanna and al-Qarara village, east of Khan Yunis. During this incursion, Israeli forces killed 7 Palestinians, including a woman, her two adult sons, her daughter and her nephew. They also wounded 22 Palestinians.
According to investigations conducted by PCHR, at approximately 02:30 on Thursday, Israeli warplanes fired 7 missiles at various areas in al-Zanna area in the northeast of Bani Suhaila village, east of Khan Yunis. As a result, 11 members of the Palestinian resistance were wounded. Nine of them were evacuated to Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis, but medical crews were not able to reach the remaining two, who subsequently bled to death. Their bodies were found buried after the Israeli forces withdrew from the area that night.
Soon afterwards, Israeli forces moved into al-Zanna area and al-Qarara village. At approximately 08:30, Israeli forces fired a tank shell at a number of members of the Palestinian resistance and a number of civilians. Sami Hamdan ‘Abdul Rahim Fayadh, 28, a member of the al-Quds Brigades (the armed wing of Islamic Jihad), was killed, and a second man was injured.
The shell also hit a house belonging the victim’s family, wounding his sister, 22-year-old Asmaa’. As residents of the house attempted to flee for their lives, Israeli troops opened fire at the front door. They also fired two additional tank shells. As a result, the victim’s mother, brother, sister and cousin were all killed: Karima ‘Abdul Rahman Ahmed Fayadh, 59, hit by several gunshot to the chest; Ahmed Hamdan ‘Abdul Rahim Fayadh, 32, hit by shrapnel throughout his body; Asmaa’ Hamdan ‘Abdul Rahim Fayadh, 22, hit by several gunshots to the chest; Mohammed Khudair ‘Abdul Rahman Fayadh, 18, hit by a gunshot to the chest.
At approximately 22:00, Israeli forces withdrew from the area,after they had destroyed a 237-year-old, 4-storey house belonging to Sameer Fayez Abu Teeba, 53. They also razed 49 donums of agricultural land planted with olives, and a vegetable garden.
On the same day, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian and wounded 4 others, including 2 children, during an incursion into al-Shojaeya neighborhood in the east of Gaza City. In addition, they also killed another Palestinian, and wounded 4 others, including 2 children, in Rafah.
On 4 January, Israeli forces killed 2 members of the Palestinian resistance in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Hanoun.
On 5 January, Israeli forces killed a member of the Palestinian resistance in Beit Hanoun town.
On 6 January, Israeli forces moved into al-Boreij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip. During this incursion, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinians, including a child, and a woman, and wounded 40 others, including 15 children and 3 women. On the same day, Israeli forces killed a member of the Palestinian resistance and wounded 2 others in al-Shojaeya neighborhood in the east of Gaza City.
On 9 January 2008, Israeli forces killed a woman and a child and wounded 4 other civilians in Beit Hanoun town. On the same day, a Palestinian farmer was wounded by Israeli gunfire in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Lahia.
The PCHR expressed their utmost concern about the deterioration of the economic and social conditions resulted from the total siege imposed by Israeli occupation authorities on the Occupied Palestinian Territories, especially the Gaza Strip.
They called on people worldwide who are concerned about human rights to write letters to their local Israeli consulates to demand an end to the Israeli siege on Gaza. This siege has resulted in the deaths of 61 Palestinian patients since September who were unable to reach needed medical treatment outside Gaza.