In its Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory for the week of 22-28 July 2010, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights found that Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian worker in the northern West Bank.In addition, Israeli forces continued to use force against peaceful protests in the West Bank. Four international human rights defenders and one Palestinian photojournalist were injured.
Israeli forces abducted twenty-one civilians, including twelve international human rights defenders, one of whom is Luisa Morgantini.
Israeli forces continued to fire at Palestinian farmers and workers in border areas of the Gaza Strip. One Palestinian civilian was seriously wounded in the northern Gaza Strip.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
In the West Bank, on 22 July 2010, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian worker from Qalqilya, near ‘Burkan’ settlement, west of Salfit. Israeli military sources claimed that ‘a military unit observed two Palestinians, one of whom was armed, when they attempted to cross the settlement’s fence. When the two Palestinians did not obey orders to stop, the soldiers fired at them, killing the unarmed one and wounding the armed one, who was able to escape.’ Investigations conducted by PCHR refute this claim and confirm that none of the targeted persons were armed and that the two men were looking for jobs.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least twenty-five military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, during which they abducted thirteen Palestinian civilians.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces used excessive force to disperse peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall and settlement activities. As a result, three international human rights defenders, including one from Israel, and a Palestinian photojournalist were injured. Israeli forces also violently beat a number of demonstrators. Israeli forces also abducted twelve Israeli and international human rights defenders, including Luisa Morgantini, Former Deputy Speaker of the European Parliament, four photojournalists and five Palestinian civilians, including a woman.
Israeli troops stationed at military checkpoints and border crossings in the West Bank abducted nine Palestinian civilians, including six children and one woman.
Israeli forces have continued to take measures at creating a Jewish majority in Jerusalem. During the reporting period, officials of the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem, accompanied by officials of the Property Tax Department, waged a wide-scale campaign against Palestinian stores in Shu’fat village, northeast of Jerusalem. They searched stores and verified their licenses and documents, creating significant tension in the area. Also during the reporting period, officials of the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem waged a campaign against Palestinian street vendors. Dozens of officials, accompanied by the Israeli police, were deployed in the streets and they attacked streets vendors and confiscated their goods. It is worth noting that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem wages repeated campaigns against streets vendors in an attempt to exert economic pressure on Palestinian civilians in the city.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
In the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian civilian was shot and seriously wounded by Israeli forces while on a tract of land belonging to his grandfather. At approximately 06:30 on Friday July 23rd, Israeli troops stationed at Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the northern Gaza Strip fired at Akram Tayseer Sa’ada, 19, from Beit Hanoun, when he was on a tract of land belonging to his grandfather, nearly 150 meters away from the crossing. He was seriously wounded by a bullet to the chest.
On Monday morning, 26 July 2010, Israeli warplanes bombarded tunnels along the Egyptian border, south of Rafah. They also bombarded and destroyed a plastic and iron pipe store in the central Gaza Strip. No casualties were reported.
Israel has continuously closed all border crossings to the Gaza Strip for approximately three years. The illegal Israeli-imposed siege of Gaza, which has steadily tightened since June 2007, has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.
Israeli Annexation Wall:
During the reporting period, Israeli forces used excessive force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall and settlement activities. As a result, three international human rights defenders, including one from Israel, and one Palestinian journalist were injured. A number of demonstrators also suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises. Israeli forces also abducted twelve Israeli and international human rights defenders, four Palestinian photojournalists and five Palestinian civilians, including a woman.
Following the Friday Prayer on 23 July 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders, including Ms. Luisa Morgantini, Former Deputy Speaker of the European Parliament, organized a peaceful demonstration in protest against the construction of the Annexation Wall in Bil’ein village, west of Ramallah. They moved towards the Annexation Wall. Israeli troops stationed in the area fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators. As a result, Enat Gotman, 30, and Israeli human rights defender, was hit by a tear gas canister to the head. Additionally, Israeli forces abducted Ms. Morgantinti and Copi Zants, 34, an Israeli human rights defender, but released them later. Dozens of demonstrators also suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten by Israeli troops.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 23 July 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Ne’lin village, west of Ramallah, in protest against the construction of the Annexation Wall. They clashed with Israeli forces troops positioned near the Wall. Israeli forces troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at demonstrators. As a result, dozens of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation, and others sustained bruises. Israeli troops also prevented two photojournalists, Mousa al-Sha’er and Lu’ai Sababa, from photographing the demonstration.
On Friday afternoon, 23 July 2010, after Israeli settlers set up a tent on a hill in al-Bwaira area in the east of Hebron, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international human rights defenders demonstrated in the area in protest to this action. Israeli troops attacked the demonstrators, injuring two of them. Israeli troops abducted four demonstrators, including a woman, but released them later:
They also detained two photojournalists and prevented them from carrying out their work: Yusri Mahmoud al-Jamal, 32, working for Reuters; and Hazem Jameel Bader, 42, working for France Press Agency.
On Saturday afternoon, 24 July 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders demonstrated in the center of Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron. They moved towards Zaher al-Brahish area, where Israeli forces plan to confiscate areas of Palestinian land to the north of the Israeli settlement of ‘Karmi Tsur.’ Israeli troops attacked the demonstrators and fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, four civilians (an old man, two international human rights defenders and a photojournalist) were injured.
At approximately 16:20 on the same day, the Youth Commission against Settlement in Hebron organized a peaceful demonstration in protest to continued closure of al-Shuhada Street in the center of the town. A number of international solidarity activists participated in the demonstration, which stopped near the entrances of ‘Beit Rumano’ settlement outpost in the north of the old city. Israeli troops attacked the demonstrators and abducted ten international solidarity activists, releasing them later. A number of demonstrators sustained bruises during the arrests. At approximately 18:00, Israeli troops abducted ‘Eissa Isma’il ‘Amru, 30, a member of the Youth Commission against Settlement, when he was on his way back home in the old city of Hebron after the demonstration.
Israeli settlement activities:
Israeli forces have continued settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
On 26 July 2010, Israeli forces moved into Ethna village, northwest of Hebron. They handed written notices issued by the Higher Organization Council of the Israeli Civil Administration to Palestinian civilians ordering a halt on construction work for six houses and a farm stable.
On the same day, dozens of Israeli settlers, escorted by Israeli forces, moved into the east of Nablus. They conducted Jewish rituals in Joseph Tomb. They left the area at approximately 05:00.
Also on 26 July 2010, dozens of Israeli settlers from ‘Brakha’ settlement, south of Nablus, attacked Palestinian houses in the northwest of Bourin village, south of the city. They threw stones at houses and set fire to the area surrounding the homes. A group of olive trees were burnt and windows of a number of houses were broken.
Also on the same day, dozens of Israeli settlers from ‘Yits’har’ settlement, south of Nablus, attacked Palestinian houses in the west of Hawara village, south of Nablus and threw stones at the houses. No injuries were reported.
Recommendations to the international community:
Due to the number and severity of Israeli human rights violations this week, the PCHR made a number of recommendations to the international community. Among these were a recommendation that human rights organizations, bar associations, unions and NGOs continue their role in pressuring their governments to secure Israel’s respect for human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and to end its attacks on Palestinian civilians.
The PCHR calls upon the international community to pressure Israel to lift the severe restrictions imposed by the Israeli government and its occupation forces on access for international organizations to the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
For the full text of the report, click on the link below: