In its Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territories for the week of 09– 15 June 2011, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) found that one Palestinian died of wounds he had sustained during the wide scale Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip.In addition, a Palestinian civilian was wounded by Israeli forces in Salfit, and an elderly Palestinian man was shot in the head by Israeli settlers in the West Bank.
Israeli forces continued to use force against peaceful protests in the West Bank. Two Palestinian civilians were wounded. Israeli forces abducted 4 Israeli human rights defenders and two Palestinian civilians.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
Israeli forces conducted 50 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and a limited one into the Gaza Strip, during which they abducted 21 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children. The detainees include former Palestinian Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Wasfi Qabaha.
On 10 June 2011, an old Palestinian man was wounded by a bullet to the head by an Israeli settler near Ramallah.
On 13 June 2011, a Palestinian civilian was wounded by Israeli forces in Salfit. Israeli forces fired at number of Palestinian boys and young men who threw stones at military vehicles.
Israeli forces abducted two Palestinian civilians, including a woman, at military checkpoints in the West Bank.
Israeli forces violently beat a Palestinian civilian at a military checkpoint near Hebron.
Israeli attacks on holy sites:
On 09 June 2011, a group of Jewish extremists, mostly settlers from “Kiryat Arba” settlement in Hebron, escorted by Israeli forces, broke into the yards of the al-Aqsa Mosque.
On 10 June 2011, an Israeli police force stormed the yards of the al-Aqsa Mosque after the Friday Prayer. A number of young men threw stones at the force. Immediately, Israeli police officers fired rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canisters at them. No casualties.
On Saturday, 11 June 2011, a number of Jewish extremists conducted religious rituals in a Palestinian market in Jerusalem. The Israeli police forced Palestinian civilians to close their shops in the market.
On Sunday, 12 June 2011, the Israeli authorities started excavation works in al-Sultan Pool in the old town, which is a registered Islamic site. On the same day, officials of the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem and the Israeli police chased peddlers in Bab al-Amoud area. They confiscated goods and attacked a number of peddlers.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
On 11 June 2011, medical sources at the Israeli Hasharon Hospital declared that Mohammed Sha’ban Mohammed Esleem, 50, from Gaza City, died of wounds he had sustained on 15 January 2009 during the wide scale Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip. Esleem had been wounded by shrapnel to the head, the abdomen and the hand. On 24 February 2009, he was transferred to an Egyptian hospital. On 29 May 2011, he was transferred to an Israeli hospital, where he had received medical treatment until his death. It is worth noting that Esleem was wounded inside his house when Israeli forces targeted the late Minister of Interior in the Gaza government, Sa’id Syam. As a result of this attack, 12 Palestinians, including 6 members of the Esleem family, were killed.
On 11 June, Israeli forces fired at Palestinian fishing boats in the Gaza Strip.
Israel has continued to impose a total siege and has isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world. Israeli forces have continued to impose a total ban on the exportation of Gaza’s products, especially industrial products, leading to undermining any real chances to rerun economic establishments. The situation has been aggravated especially after making Karm Abu Salem crossing as Gaza sole commercial crossing and the repeated closure of this crossing which negatively affected the quantity of Gazan products which were allowed to be exported during last April.
Israeli forces have continued to prolong the implementation of their decision to allow 60 cars into Gaza weekly although more than 10 months have passed since they announced this decision after three years of ban imposed on the delivery of cars to Gaza. As a result, the prices of cars in Gaza have been on the rise and local markets experience a serious shortage in spare parts.
Israeli settlement activities:
Israel has continued its settlement activities in the West Bank in violation of international humanitarian law, and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
Following the Friday Prayer on 10 June 2011, dozens of Palestinian civilians from Kufor Malek village, northeast of Ramallah, travelled in cars to al-Marj area, nearly 10 kilometers to the east of the village, where 3 Israeli settlers set up a tent. When the Palestinian civilians arrived at the area, one of the settlers opened fire at them. As a result, Yousef Hammad al-Qaq, 66, was wounded by a bullet to the head. Later, Israeli forces arrived at the area and attempted to control the settlers.
At approximately 09:10 on Sunday, 12 June 2011, Israeli forces moved into Brouqin village, west of Salfit. They handed a notice to Mo’ayad Mohammed Baker, ordering the demolition of an agricultural barrack belonging to him. They also handed another notice to villagers ordering the demolition of a school, and a third one ordering stopping construction of Ali Bin Abi Taleb Mosque allegedly for the lack of licenses.
At approximately 12:10 on the same day, Israeli forces moved into Hares village, north of Salfit. They handed notices ordering the demolition of two barracks used for car washing belonging to ‘Abdullah and Jihad Mohammed Daoud, claiming that they were built without licenses.
On Monday, 13 June 2011, Israeli settlers from “Ashkilot” settlement to the west of Arab al-Ramadin village, southwest of Hebron, razed and leveled at least 20 dumuns of Palestinian agricultural land isolated by the annexation wall. Israeli settlers seized this area of land a few months ago. The land belongs to Nassar Mohammed Zamel.
At approximately 06:30 on Tuesday, 14 June 2011, Israeli forces, accompanied by two bulldozers, moved into Dassayel village, north of Jericho. They demolished 3 barnyards and 10 tents, claiming that they were established without licenses near bypass road #90, which is used by Israeli settlers. A number of Palestinian civilians attempted to stop the demolition, but Israeli soldiers violently beat them. As a result, ‘Ali ‘Ebayat sustained bruises. Three of the demolished tents were inhabited.
At approximately 10:00 on the same day, Israeli forces, accompanied by two bulldozers, moved into al-Harayiq area, southwest of Hebron. They demolished two water wells belonging to the al-Jamal family. According to Samer ‘Abdul Hamid al-Jamal, Israeli forces handed notices ordering the demolition of 5 water wells, claiming that they were established without licenses, and then demolished two wells. Israeli soldiers used force to drive Palestinian civilians away from the area, including firing tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a number of civilians suffered from tear gas inhalation.
At approximately 11:30 on the same day, Israeli forces moved into al-Ma’sara village, west of Bethlehem. They handed a notice to Ahmed Zawahra ordering the demolition of a mosque in the east of the village, claiming that it was built without a license. The notice gives Palestinian civilians 13 days to appeal against the order.
On the same day in the evening, at least 50 Israeli settlers living in settlement outposts in the center of Hebron attacked 5 Palestinian houses in Tal Rumaida neighborhood near the closed al-Shuhada Street. This attack came two days following the Israeli High Court’s rejection of a petition filed by Palestinians to open closed roads in Hebron.
At approximately 13:30 on Wednesday, 15 June 2011, a number of Israeli settlers from “Mitatyahu” settlement, west of Ramallah, set fire to dozens of olive trees in Bil’in village. Israeli forces restricted the access of Palestinian fire fighters to the area to extinguish the fire. In the end, the firefighters were able to extinguish the fire. At approximately 17:30, a number of Palestinian boys gathered and threw stones at Israeli soldiers near the annexation wall. Immediately, Israeli soldiers fired bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. No casualties were reported.
Israeli Annexation Wall:
During the reporting period, Israeli forces used excessive force to disperse peaceful demonstrations organized in protest to Israeli settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall in the West Bank. As a result, two Palestinian civilians were wounded, and dozens of Palestinian civilians and international human rights defenders suffered from tear gas inhalation. Israeli forces also abducted 4 Israeli human rights defenders and one Palestinian civilian.
Following the Friday Prayer on 10 June 2011, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Bil’in village, west of Ramallah, in protest of the construction of the annexation wall. They marched in the streets raising Palestinian flags and portraits of Jawaher and Bassem Abu Rahma, who were killed by Israeli forces, and Marwan al-Barghouthi, Member of the Palestinian Legislative Council who had been detained by Israeli forces. Mr. Waleed al-Mo’aqat, Palestinian Ambassador to Argentina; Dr. Munjed Saleh, Assistant of the Palestinian Foreign Minister for Latin America and Caribbean Affairs; Mr. Urassio Wamba, Argentinean Ambassador to Palestine; Ms. Sicilia Marshan, Speaker of the Argentinean Parliament; and an Argentinean parliamentary delegation participated in the demonstration. Israeli soldiers stationed in the area fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators. As a result, a number of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 10 June 2011, 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, a number of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Also following the Friday Prayer on 10 March 2011, 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. As a result, a number of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation. Additionally, Israeli forces abducted 3 Israeli human rights defenders.
Following the Noon Prayer on Wednesday, 15 June 2011, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Deir Qiddis village, west of Ramallah, in protest to Israeli settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall. They marched in the streets raising the Palestinian flag. They then moved towards Jabal al-Deir area in the west of the village near “Nili” settlement. When the demonstrators attempted to reach the area, Israeli soldiers deployed there fired bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, two demonstrators were wounded.
Recommendations to the international community:
Due to the number and severity of Israeli human rights violations this week, the PCHR made several recommendations to the international community. Among these were a recommendation that the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention convene a conference to take effective steps to ensure Israel’s respect of the Convention in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and to provide immediate protection for Palestinian civilians.
The PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to comply with their legal obligations detailed in Article 146 of the Convention to search for and prosecute those responsible for grave breaches, namely war crimes.
For the full text of the report, click on the link below: