In its Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory for the week of 05 -11 August 2010, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights found that two Palestinian civilians were injured, and Israeli forces abducted 66 civilians, including 3 human rights defenders, 4 children and 45 people abducted en masse from Jalboun village near Jenin.During the past week, Israeli forces continued to fire at Palestinian farmers and workers in the Gaza Strip’s border areas. In addition, Israeli troops conducted 9 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
During the reporting period, 2 Palestinian civilians were wounded by Israeli forces in the West Bank, when Israeli forces used excessive force to disperse peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians in protest of the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities in the West Bank. Israeli forces also violently beat a number of demonstrators.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 9 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, during which they abducted 54 Palestinian civilians. The widest arrest campaign took place in Jalboun village, northeast of Jenin, when Israeli forces abducted 45 Palestinian civilians, 41 of whom were later released.
On 06 August 2010, a Palestinian civilian was injured and a child fainted when Israeli forces intervened to provide protection to Israeli settlers who attacked Palestinian civilian vehicles in the northeast of Hebron. During that incident, Israeli forces also abducted two Palestinian civilians, including a human rights defender.
Israel has continued to take measures aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem. On 05 August 2010, a bulldozer of the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem started to destroy dozens of graves in Ma’man Allah Islamic Cemetery. The Al-Aqsa Association for Islamic Heritage had filed a petition at the Israeli District Court demanding that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem’s plan to destroy graves in Ma’man Allah Cemetery be stopped. On Monday noon, the court issued a ruling allowing the municipality to raze a part of the cemetery to establish an Israeli court compound.
Following the court session, an official from the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem attacked photojournalist Sharaf Ahmed, 35. Al-Aqsa Association for Islamic Heritage revealed such Israeli plans when it presented a short film, which showed an Israeli official explaining the plans and the beginning of their implementation, which started with marking at least 100 graves with red signs in order to be demolished. The Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem claimed that the graves that it would demolish were new graves that are not related to the historic cemetery. However, the lawyers of al-Aqsa Association proved with documents and photos that those graves had existed before 1948, and only the grave stones were renewed. On 10 August 2010, the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem demolished gravestones of at least 70 graves in Ma’man Allah Cemetery. Press crews were not allowed to get close to the cemetery. The Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem has so far demolished 90% of the graves they had marked for demolition.
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 09 August 2010, Israeli forces moved into ‘Ein al-Hilwa area in the Northern Jordan Valley in the northeast of the West Bank. They dismantled 6 tents belonging to Mohammed Ahmed Nawaj’a and Ahmed Isma’il Nawaj’a, claiming that the tents were set up in a closed military zone.
On 05 August 2010, dozens of Israeli settlers, escorted by Israeli forces, arrived at Joseph Tomb in the east of Nablus. They conducted religious rituals in the area until 05:00, when they left the area.
Also on 05 August 2010, a number of Israeli settlers attacked a Palestinian woman while she was traveling in her car in Hebron.
At approximately 16:00 on the same day, the Youth Commission against Settlement in Hebron, organized a peaceful demonstration to protest teh 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 town. Israeli troops attacked the demonstrators and prevented them from moving forward. Israeli settlers also sprinkled dirty water onto the demonstrators. It is worth noting that Israeli forces have closed al-Shuhada Street for Palestinian vehicles since 1994, and for pedestrians since 2000.
On 06 August 2010, at least 20 Israeli settlers from ‘Kharsina’ settlement, northeast of Hebron, attacked Palestinian civilian vehicles parked in al-Bwaira area, using stones and iron bars. Palestinian civilians got out of their houses in an attempt to drive the settlers away from the area. Israeli forces arrived at the area, and instead of expelling the settlers from the area, they attacked Palestinian civilians and forced them to go back to their homes. Israeli forces arrested two Palestinian civilians, including a human rights defender.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
On Monday August 9th, at approximately 19:35, Israeli gunboats stationed opposite to Beit Lahia beach in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats. No casualties or damages were reported.
Israel has continuously closed all border crossings to the Gaza Strip for over three years. The illegal Israeli-imposed closure of the Gaza Strip, which has steadily tightened since June 2007, has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.
1.5 million people are being denied their basic rights, including freedom of movement, and their rights to appropriate living conditions, work, health and education.
The main concern of the population of the Gaza Strip is to obtain their basic needs of food, medicines, water and electricity supplies.
Israeli Annexation Wall:
When complete, the illegal Annexation Wall will stretch for 724 kilometers around the West Bank, further isolating the entire population. 350 kilometers of the Wall have already been constructed. Approximately 99% of the Wall has been constructed inside the West Bank itself, further confiscating Palestinian land.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces used force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders in protest to the construction of the Wall and settlement activities. As a result, two Palestinian civilians were injured. A number of civilians, also suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises. Israeli forces also arrested 4 Palestinian civilians, an Israeli human rights defender and an international human rights defender.
Following the Friday Prayer on 06 August 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in protest to 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, two Palestinian civilians were injured.
Several demonstrators also suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten by Israeli troops.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 06 August 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 troops positioned near the Wall. Israeli 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.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 06 August 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, in protest against land confiscations in the Wad al-Raya area between the villages of Nabi Saleh and Deir Nizam. When the demonstrators attempted to reach areas of land seized by Israeli settlers near ‘Halmish’ settlement, Israeli troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. A number of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises. Israeli forces also arrested Hiedi, 24, an Israeli human rights defender.
At approximately 11:30 on Saturday, 07 August 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, 4 civilians, including two journalists and an international human rights defender, were injured. One of the injured was Ahmed Khalil Abu Hashem, 43, Secretary of the Committee against Settlement in Beit Ummar village, sustained bruises and suffered from tear gas inhalation.
At approximately 10:30 on Monday, 09 August 2010, Israeli troops stationed at the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Khan Yunis, fired at dozens of Palestinian civilians who were peacefully protesting the creation of a security zone by Israeli forces along the border. No casualties were reported.
At approximately 15:30 on Tuesday, 10 August 2010, Israeli forces stormed 3 shops belonging to ‘Azzam ‘Abdul Rahim Abu Khalaf, 45, in a yard opposite to ‘Beit Rumano’ settlement outpost in Hebron. They ordered him to close and leave the shops in half an hour to allow Israeli officers to close them for security reasons. Immediately, the Youth Commission against Settlement in Hebron and international human rights defenders gathered in front of the shops to prevent their closure. At approximately 17:00, Israeli forces attacked the gathering and arrested 4 Palestinian civilians and an international human rights defenders. The five detainees and the shops’ owner sustained bruises throughout their bodies. The detained international human rights defender was released later after Israeli forces had ordered his expulsion from the country.
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 the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention fulfill their legal and moral obligations under Article 1 of the Convention to ensure Israel’s respect for the Convention in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. PCHR believes that the conspiracy of silence practiced by the international community has encouraged Israel to act as if it is above the law and encourages Israel continue to violate international human rights and humanitarian law.
For the full text of the report, click on the link below: