Two Palestinian resistance fighters were killed by Israeli forces in Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip. In a separate incident, two Palestinian resistance fighters were wounded by Israeli forces in the east of al-Boreij refugee camp in central Gaza.Israeli forces have continued to use force against peaceful protests in the West Bank. Many Palestinian civilians suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinian resistance fighters and wounded another two resistance fighters in the Gaza Strip.
In the Gaza Strip, on 18 January 2012, two Palestinian resistance fighters were killed when Israeli forces positioned at the border in the southeast of Beit Hanoun, in the north of the Gaza Strip, fired 8 consecutive artillery shells at two Palestinian resistance fighters while on mission near the border area. Israeli aircrafts also flew in the sky and opened heavy fire at the two men. Israeli forces also fired two artillery shells at PRCS ambulances while trying to evacuate the bodies. Israeli forces declared that they targeted a group of Palestinians who were trying to plant explosives near the border.
On 12 January 2012, two Palestinian resistance fighters were wounded when Israeli forces positioned at the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, to the east of al-Boreij refugee camp, in the central Gaza Strip, fired two artillery shells at them. The wounded were transferred to the al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al-Balah and their wounds were described to be moderate.
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces conducted 3 limited incursions on 18 January 2008. The first incursion was conducted at around 02:00 into al-Shoka village, in the southeast of Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, and abducted two Palestinians.
The second incursion took place at around 11:55, after Israeli forces killed two Palestinian resistance fighters in the southeast of Beit Hanoun in the north of the Gaza Strip. Israeli forces conducted scanning operations and then withdrew over the border.
Israeli forces conducted the third incursion at around 12:30; they moved around 400 meters into the north of Beit Lahia, in the north of the Gaza Strip, while conducting intensive shooting at Palestinian farms located around 700 meters form the borders, following which they conducted scanning operations. At around 14:00, Israeli forces drove to the east along the border and positioned themselves at the Bedouin Village. They continued firing and conducting scanning. Later, they drove to the site of the ex-settlement of Nisanit, northwest of Beit Hanoun. Israeli forces withdrew at around 16:00 and neither casualties nor damages to civilian property were reported.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
During the last week, Israeli forces conducted 56 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, during which they abducted 37 Palestinians, including 4 children, in the West Bank.
Israeli forces abducted 2 Palestinians from al-Shoka village in the south of the Gaza Strip.
Israeli soldiers abducted 6 Palestinian civilians, including a child, at various checkpoints in the West Bank.
Israel has continued efforts to create a Jewish majority in East Jerusalem. Israeli forces demolished a Palestinian house in Shu’fat, bulldozed a warehouse and barracks in Sur Baher. On 16 January 2012, Israeli forces, supported by bulldozers and the Israeli municipality officers moved into Shu’fat neighborhood, north of occupied Jerusalem. They surrounded the house of Mohammed Ibrahim Abu Khdeir and prevented its residents from getting out. The municipality officers started cutting metal poles. Abu Khdeir said that he established those poles 20 days ago to build a third floor made of aluminum, wood and bricks. The house is built on an area of 278 meters. He added that an inspector from the municipality came 4 times within 10 days and took photos of the house. On 9 January 2012, the municipality officers sent him a notice stating that the poles had to be removed within a week, otherwise, the municipality would remove them and oblige him to pay 150,000 NIS as a fine.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces raided the house of Amin Abdul Aziz Abu Warda, 46, a journalist and lecturer in the journalism department in An-Najah National University, in the third floor in Abu Warda building in al-Quds Street, east of Nablus. They held the five member family of Abu Warda and, his brother and his brother’s wife in a room in the house. They withdrew one hour later and confiscated a laptop, a hard desk, papers from Abu Warda’s work and mobile numbers’ including Abu Warda’s number. Israeli forces also destroyed the door of Abu Warda’s office in the third floor in al-Takrouri building, in the western compound in Nablus. They raided and searched the office. They confiscated a laptop, 2 hard desks and a camera memory and then withdrew. It should be noted that on 28 December 2011, Israeli forces abducted Abu Warda and transferred him to an interrogation center in Petah Tikva. On 04 January 2012, Abu Warda was presented before a judge in the Israeli Military Court in Salem Camp, west of Jenin. The judge issued a decision to extend the detention of Abu Warda for 12 days pending investigation.
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 13 January 2012, a group of settlers guarded by Israeli soldiers moved into the center of Hebron under the pretext visiting the grave of a Rabbi there according to agreements signed between the Palestinian Authority and Israel. The settlers chanted slogans against the Palestinians.
On 15 January 2012, a number of settlers residing in Ramat Yishai settlement that, in Tal al-Rmeida neighborhood in the center of Hebron, set fire to a civil vehicle belonging to Hana’ Jameel Abu Haikal, 55, due to which the car was completely burnt. Abu Haikal said that her white Hyundai Intra car was completely burnt, noting that this was the fifth time that vehicles owned by her family had been burnt by the settlers to force them to leave their house adjacent to the said settlement.
Israeli Annexation Wall:
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 in the West Bank, and in protest to the establishment of a buffer zone in the Gaza Strip. As a result, dozens of Palestinian civilians and human rights defenders suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Following the Friday Prayer on 13 January 2012, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Bil’ein village, west of Ramallah, in protest to the construction of the annexation wall and support for efforts to achieve national reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah movements. They raised the Palestinian flag and called for ending the political division. They then moved towards areas of Palestinian land, which the Israeli High Court ordered to be returned to their Palestinian owners. Israeli soldiers stationed in the area fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators. As a result, dozens of Palestinian civilians suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Also following the Friday prayer on 13 January 2012, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders gathered in the center of al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, to start the weekly peaceful protest against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities. The protesters walked towards the gate erected by Israeli forces near the entrance of the village and leading to Palestinian lands that Israeli settlers from the nearby ‘Halmish’ settlement are trying to seize. Israeli soldiers, who had been extensively deployed in the area and near all the entrances of the village since the morning, began to confront the protesters who wanted to walk towards the affected lands. Israeli soldiers fired live and rubber-coated bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at protesters. As a result, dozens of civilians suffered from tear gas inhalation and sustained bruises.
Also following the Friday Prayer, at approximately 12:30 on the same day, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Kafr Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqilya, in protest against closing the eastern entrance of the village. The demonstrators headed towards that entrance, while the Israeli soldiers topped the house of ‘Adnan Abdul Mohdi and turned it into a military site after its residents had been detained in a room. Israeli soldiers fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at demonstrators. As a result, a number of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation.
At approximately 12:10 on Tuesday, 17 January 2012, Israeli forces positioned at the border fence, northeast of Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip, intermittently fired at the Palestinian demonstrators and international activists. In his testimony, the Beit Hanoun Local Initiative coordinator, Saber al-Za’aneen, said that at approximately 11:00 on the same day, about 50 demonstrators, including 3 international activists, headed towards the border fence demonstrating against the Israeli-imposed buffer zone. The demonstrators gathered near a fence that was established by Israeli forces in the Palestinian lands. The fence is approximately 70 meters far from the border fence. At approximately 12:05, an Israeli jeep arrived and 4 soldiers stepped out of it. They started intermittently firing at the demonstrators for about 20 minutes. As a result, the demonstrators were terrorized and fled; however, 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 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: