PCHR Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the oPt (12 – 18 March 2015)

March 23, 2015 6:36 AM IMEMC & Agencies Human rights, News Report, Palestine 0
23 Mar
6:36 AM

Israeli forces have continued with systematic attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt) for the reporting period of 12 – 18 March 2015.Israeli attacks in the West Bank & Gaza:

Shootings

During the reporting period, Israeli forces wounded 15 Palestinian civilians, including three children, in the West Bank. They also continued to target Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip sea and farmers, shepherds and agricultural lands in the border area.

In the West Bank, Israeli forces wounded 15 Palestinian civilians, including three children. Three of these civilians were wounded in protests against the annexation wall and settlement activities, while the other 12 ones were wounded in protests against the Israeli policies applied in oPt.

Israeli forces continued the use of excessive and systematic force against peaceful protests organized by Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international solidarity activists against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities in the West Bank. As a result, three protestors were wounded, two of whom were wounded in Kufor Qaddoum’s protest, northeast of Qalqilya.

In the same context, 12 Palestinian civilians, including three children, were wounded during other protests organized at the western entrance of Selwad village, northeast of Ramallah, the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah, and around Ofer detention facility, southwest of Ramallah.

In the Gaza Strip, in the context of opening fire at border areas, on 17 March 2015, Israeli soldiers, who stepped from 2 military vehicles along the border fence, north of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian farmers working on their lands adjacent to the border fence. About ten bullets hit a vehicle belonging to a farmer from al-Atatrah neighbourhood. As a result, the vehicle was completely burnt, but no casualties were reported.

As part of targeting fishermen in the Gaza Strip sea, on 13 March 2015, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Sudaniya area, west of Jabalia, north of the Gaza Strip, opened fire around Palestinian fishing boats sailing three nautical miles off the shore. The fishermen were frightened and sailed back, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

Incursions

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 65 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and seven one in East Jerusalem. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 60 Palestinians, including 16 children and two women. Twenty-seven of these Palestinians, including the 16 children and two women, were arrested in Jerusalem.

Restrictions on movement

Israel continued to impose a tight closure of the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip, which has been steadily tightened since June 2007 has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli authorities impose measures to undermine the freedom of trade, including the basic needs for the Gaza Strip population and the agricultural and industrial products to be exported. For 8 consecutive years, Israel has tightened the land and naval closure to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, and other countries around the world. This resulted in grave violations of the economic, social and cultural rights and a deterioration of living conditions for 1.8 million people. The Israeli authorities have established Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shaloum) as the sole crossing for imports and exports in order to exercise its control over the Gaza Strip’s economy. They also aim at imposing a complete ban on the Gaza Strip’s exports.

Efforts to create a Jewish demographic majority in East Jerusalem:

Incursions and arrests

On Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested two civilians.

On the same day, Israeli forces arrested 3 girls and a woman, who were present around al-Selsela gate of al-Aqsa Mosque in the old city.

On Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested four civilians, including three children.

On the same day, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-Amoud neighborhood, east of the old city. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested three children.

On Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested a woman and three young men while being present in the yard of al-Aqsa Mosque in the old city under the pretext of participating in riots.

On the same day, Israeli forces arrested Mahdi Hatem Abu Asab (11), while he was present in al-Qarmi neighborhood, in the old city.

On Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into Beit Hanina neighborhood, north of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested three civilians, including a child.

On the same day, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to Mohammed Darweesh in al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They searched the house and arrested his son Khaled (17).

On the same day, Israeli forces moved into al-Thawri neighborhood, south of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested two civilians, including a child.

On the same day, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-Amoud neighborhood, east of the old city. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested two children.

Also on the same day, Israeli forces arrested Jawad Siyam (42), director of the Information Center of Wadi Helwa, in Selwan village, south of the old city.

Settler attacks in the city

On Friday, 13 March 2015, 2 settlers attacked Ahmed Mohammed Essa Abu Ta’ah (19) when he was in al-Masharef Mount area ‘the French Hill’, north of the old city. As a result, he sustained wounds in the face and bruises in the neck.

At approximately 09:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces surrounded a house belonging to Sab Laban family house in Aqabet al-Khalidiya in the old city. They tried to evacuate the house for the interest of settlers. Israeli forces brought demolition tools to burst out the door and force the family get out of the house. The family lawyer intervened and obtained an order to delay the evacuation.

On Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli Elad Association seized by forgery a building belonging to al-Malehi family and two tracts of land in Wadi Helwa neighborhood, south of the old city.

In the same context, under the protection of Israeli forces, dozens of armed settlers seized a 500-square-meter tract of land belonging to al-Abasi family in Wadi Helwa neighborhood and established tin-made rooms on it. They also seized a 1,200-square-meter tract of land belonging to Sh’aban family in the same neighborhood. They cleaned the land and placed a caravan on it.

Restrictions on movement in the city

On Sunday morning, 15 March 2015, Israeli police denied eight buses from Sour Baher, south of East Jerusalem, access to al-Aqsa Mosque.

Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property:

On 16 March 2015, Israeli forces noticed Qana Valley farmers, northwest of Salfit, that they would uproot 240 olive trees aged six years from the lands of al-Tanour lands belonging to Hasan Mustafa Mansour, Mohammed ‘Abdel Fattah Zidan and Ahmed Khalil Mansour from the village. They gave the farmers 48 hours to remove the trees starting from 15 March 2015 and threatened either to uproot the trees or to subject the three aforementioned farmers to trial, harm and detention.

On 18 March 2015, Israeli forces backed by three bulldozers moved into Kherbet Makhoul area in the Northern Jordan Valley, east of Tubas. The Israeli bulldozers immediately levelled a residential compound for Palestinian shepherds.

Israeli forces then headed to the nearby al-Hadideyah area, and their bulldozers levelled 60-square-meter barrack belonging to Ahmed ‘Abdullah Hafez Bani ‘Odah. They then went to al-Farisiyah area and confiscated two water tanks of a capacity of 12 cubic meters.

At approximately 10:00 on the Wednesday, Israeli forces moved into al-Thaheriyah village, south of Hebron. They stationed in Ma’ala Valley area in the southeast of the village and then cut down ten almond trees and cactus seedlings in addition to confiscating them. The Civil Administration officer who accompanied the Israeli soldiers sprayed chemicals at the rest of the tree stalks in the land.

On Friday, 13 March 2015, settlers gathered on the main road between Jenin, Tulkarm and Nablus near the entrance of Silet al-Thaher village, south of Jenin. The settlers fired in the air and threw stones at the passing Palestinian vehicles traveling on the aforementioned road.

On Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli settlers gathered on the main road between Jenin, Tulkarm and Nablus near the entrance of Silet al-Thaher village, south of Jenin. The settlers threw stones at the passing Palestinian vehicles traveling on the aforementioned road.

Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Um al-Rayhan village, which has been isolated from its surroundings by the annexation wall, southwest of Jenin. They levelled vacant lands in the vicinity of a barrack used to manufacture marble.

Use of excessive force against peaceful demonstrations protesting settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall:

During the reporting period, Israeli soldiers used excessive force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians, international and Israeli human rights defenders in protest at the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities in the West Bank. As a result, two protestors were wounded; two of whom were wounded in Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqilya and the third one was wounded in al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah.

In the same context, twelve Palestinian civilians, including three children, were wounded during protests at the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah, the western entrance of Silwad village, northeast of the city, and around Ofer detention facility, southwest of Ramallah.

During the reporting period, Israeli forces arrested six protestors, including a child and three women, one of whom was an Israeli solidarity activist.

(PCHR keeps the names of the wounded in fear of being arrested by the Israeli forces within its policy to oppress the peaceful protests and prevent Palestinian civilians from participating).

Demonstrations against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activity

Following the Friday prayer, on 13 March 2015, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Bil’in, west of Ramallah, in protest at the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities. The protestors marched by the annexation wall and tried to cross the fence. Israeli soldiers stationed behind the wall, in the western area, and a large number of soldiers deployed along it, fired live bullets, tear gas canisters, rubber-coated steel bullets, sound bombs and wastewater at them and chased them into the olive fields. As a result, a number of protestors suffered tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten up by Israeli soldiers. In addition, Israeli forces arrested four French solidarity activists and took them to an unknown destination.

Around the same time, dozens of Palestinian civilians organised a peaceful demonstration in the centre of Ni’lin village, west of Ramallah, in protest at the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities. The demonstrators took the streets and headed to the annexation wall. Israeli forces closed the gates of the wall with barbwires and prevented the demonstrators from crossing to the land behind it before they responded by throwing stones. Israeli soldiers fired live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the civilians, and chased them into the village. As a result, a number of demonstrators suffered tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten up.

Also following the Friday Prayer, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders gathered in the center of 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 the protesters. As a result, a 22-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg and was taken to Yasser Arafat Hospital in Salfit. Furthermore, Israeli soldiers arrested three women, including an Israeli solidarity activist, and took them to ‘Sha’ar Benjamin’ police station, northeast of occupied Jerusalem:
1. Tal Shabira (28), an Israeli activist who was released on the same day;
2. Sihreen al-Araj (34), who was released on the following day; and
3. Boshra Abdul Karim Mostafa Tamimi (42), who was taken to ‘Hasharon’ prison inside Israel.

At approximately 12:20, Palestinian civilians and international solidarity activists organized a protest in the center of Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqilya, heading to the eastern entrance of the village in protest against closing that entrance since the beginning of al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. The demonstrators threw stones at Israeli soldiers, who fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters in response. As a result, two protestors were wounded. A 41-year-old civilian sustained shrapnel wound to the neck and a 30-year-old male sustained a bullet wound to the right leg.

Also following the Friday prayer, dozens of residents of Kisan village, east of Bethlehem, gathered at the eastern entrance of the village, to organize a protest against levelling lands of the village by Israeli forces. Israeli soldiers moved into the area and fired rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, a number of civilians suffered tear gas inhalation. In addition, Israeli soldiers harshly beat Hani Fanoun, reporter of Palestine TV, and chased other reporters and photojournalists. Furthermore, Israeli soldiers prevented them from filming and threatened them. Of those journalists were Mahmoud Elayan, Lo’ai Sababa and Samer Hamad.

At approximately 10:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, dozens of Palestinian civilians, Bir Zeit university students and human rights defenders gathered in front of Qaryout village council, southeast of Nablus. They raised the Palestinian flags and carried some olive seedlings. They made their way to al-Sahlat area, which is threatened to be confiscated, 2 kilometers away from ‘Shilo’ settlement. The protestors reached the area and started planting the seedlings, but a number of Israeli military vehicles arrived. Israeli soldiers started to fire tear gas canisters to disperse the protestors. As a result, some of them suffered tear gas inhalation. PRCS volunteers proceeded to offer first aid, but Israeli soldiers prevented them and pointed their guns at them. Moreover, Israeli soldiers arrested two of the wounded, one of whom was on a litter. The two detainee arrested, who were taken to an unknown destination, were identified as:
1. Samer Makhlouf (21), from Nablus; and
2. Mohammed Majd (22), from Bir Zeit.

Other demonstrations

Following the Friday prayer, 13 March 2015, dozens of Palestinians gathered at the western entrance of the Silwad village, northeast of Ramallah, on the road between Silwad and Yabroud villages, near Bypass road (60), in protest at the Israeli policies. Protestors set fire to tires and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at the aforementioned road and Israeli soldiers. In response, Israeli soldiers stationed in the area fired live ammunition, rubber-coated bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, six civilians, including three children, were wounded and taken to Palestine Medical Compound in Ramallah. Mohammed Jad Hamed (12) sustained a bullet wound to the belly; Saif Yusef Hamed (13) sustained a bullet wound to the head,;Sa’di Khalil (16) sustained a bullet wound to the right leg; a 19-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right thigh, a 20-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg and a 22-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the left leg.

Also following the Friday prayer, dozens of children and young men gathered at the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah. They were about 300 meters away from the fence of ‘Beit Eil’ settlement. Israeli forces stationed in the area fired live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, three civilians, including a child, were wounded and taken to Palestine Medical Compound in Ramallah. A 17-year-old child sustained a bullet wound to the right leg, a 19-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg too and a 21-year-old male sustained a bullet wound to the left leg.

On Friday afternoon, dozens of youngsters gathered from different areas of Ramallah and al-Bireh in the vicinity of Ofer detention facility, southwest of Ramallah. They headed towards the facility’s gate that was closed by Israeli soldiers. They set fire to tires and threw stones and empty bottles at the soldiers. Israeli forces deployed around the detention facility and started firing live and rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, two civilians were wounded and taken to Palestine Medical Compound in Ramallah. A 19-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the left leg and a 23-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg.

On Sunday, 15 March 2015, dozens of children and young men gathered at the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah. They were about 300 meters away from the fence of ‘Beit Eil’ settlement. Israeli forces stationed in the area fired live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, dozens of civilians suffered tear gas inhalation. Moreover, Israeli forces arrested Abdul Rahman Jamal Qasem Ali (14) and took him into an Israeli military camp in the said settlement. At approximately 18:00, the boy was delivered to the Palestinian military liaison.

On Wednesday, 18 March 2015, dozens of children and young men gathered at the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah. They were about 300 meters away from the fence of ‘Beit Eil’ settlement. Israeli forces stationed in the area fired live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, a 20-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound between the chest and belly. He was taken to Palestine Medical Compound and where his wound was described serious.

Continued closure of the oPt:

Israel continued to impose a tight closure on the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

Gaza Strip

Israeli forces continuously tighten the closure of the Gaza Strip and close all commercial crossings, making the Karm Abu Salem crossing the sole commercial crossing of the Gaza Strip, although it is not suitable for commercial purposes in terms of its operational capacity and distance from markets.

Israeli forces have continued to apply the policy, which is aimed to tighten the closure on all commercial crossings, by imposing total control over the flow of imports and exports.

The total closure of al-Mentar (‘Karni’) crossing since 02 March 2011 has seriously affected the economy of the Gaza Strip. Following this closure, all economic and commercial establishments in the Gaza Commercial Zone were shut off. It should be noted that al-Mentar crossing is the biggest crossing in the Gaza Strip, in terms of its capacity to absorb the flow of imports and exports. The decision to close al-Mentar crossing was the culmination of a series of decisions resulting in the complete closure of the Sofa crossing, east of the Gaza Strip in the beginning of 2009, and the Nahal Oz crossing, east of Gaza City, which were dedicated for the delivery of fuel and cooking gas to the Gaza Strip, in the beginning of 2010.

Israeli forces have continued to impose a total ban on the delivery of raw materials to the Gaza Strip, except for very limited items and quantities. The limited quantities of raw materials allowed into Gaza do not meet the minimal needs of the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.

The cooking gas crisis has fluctuated due to the closure of Karm Abu Salem for security claims. According to PCHR’s follow-up, Israeli authorities only allow an average of 98 tons of cooking gas into Gaza per day. This limited quantity is less than half of the daily needs, which is 200 tons per day of the civilian population in the Gaza Strip during winter. The crisis has unprecedentedly aggravated for around six weeks due to cold weather and overconsumption in addition to the power outage and using gas as an alternative in many instances of electricity. The lack of diesel and benzene led to the aggravation of the crisis as a result of using the gas cylinder for cars or as an alternative for benzene to run generators. As a result, the demand for gas further increased.

For almost seven consecutive years, Israeli forces have continued to prevent the delivery of construction materials to the Gaza Strip. Two years ago, Israeli forces approved the delivery of limited quantities of construction materials for a number of international organizations in the Gaza Strip. On 17 September 2013, they allowed the entry of limited quantities of construction materials for the private sector. However, on 13 October 2013, they re-banned it claiming that these materials are used for constructing tunnels. Last week, Israeli forces allowed the entry of construction materials only for UNRWA and UNDP projects. As a result, construction works have completely stopped impacting all sectors related to construction and an increase in unemployment levels. During the 51-day Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip in July and August 2014, Israeli authorities did not allow the entry of any construction materials. As a result, vital and infrastructure projects have been obstructed so far.

Israeli forces also continued to impose an almost total ban on the Gaza Strip exports, including agricultural and industrial products, except for light-weighted products such as flowers, strawberries, and spices.

Israel has continued to close the Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing for the majority of Palestinian citizens from the Gaza Strip. Israel only allows the movement of a limited number of groups, with many hours of waiting in the majority of cases. Israel has continued to adopt a policy aimed at reducing the number of Palestinian patients allowed to move via the Beit Hanoun crossing to receive medical treatment in hospitals in Israel or in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Israel denied permission to access hospitals via the crossing for new categories of patients from the Gaza Strip.

West Bank

Israel has imposed a tightened closure on the West Bank. During the reporting period, Israeli forces imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians:

· Hebron: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 07:00 on Thursday, 12 March 2015, Israeli forces established at the entrance of Sa’ir village, east of the city. Around the same time, another checkpoint was established at the entrance of al-Fawar refugee camp, south of Hebron. Later, the two checkpoints were removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 16:00 on Friday, 13 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 07:00 on Saturday, 14 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance of Hebron. Meanwhile, they established another checkpoint at the entrance of Beit ‘Awa village, southwest of Dura, southwest of the city. At approximately 16:00, another checkpoint was established at the southern entrance of Hahoul. Later, checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 15:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Yata village, south of Hebron. Later, the checkpoint was removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 07:30 on Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Beit Kahel village, west of Hebron. At approximately 15:00, another checkpoint was established at the entrance of al-Fawar refugee camp, south of the city. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

· Ramallah: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 10:30 on Thursday, 12 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Aboud village, northwest of the city. At approximately 20:30, Israeli forces established another checkpoint at the entrance of Termes’aya, north of the city. Both checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 10:00 on Friday, 13 March 2015, Israeli forces closed the eastern entrance of al-Nabi Saleh village, northeast of Ramallah, and prevented civilians from entering or leaving through it. Around the same time, they established another checkpoint under the bridge of ‘Ein Yabrud village, northeast of Ramallah. At approximately 11:00, a similar checkpoint was established at the entrance of N’ilin, west of the city. At approximately 18:00, they also established a checkpoint at the entrance of Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah. All checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 10:30 on Saturday, 14 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Ras Karkar village, northwest of Ramallah. At approximately 13:30, another checkpoint was established at the entrance of Qabia village, west of the city. Later, both checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 11:30 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Ein Sinia village, north of Ramallah. At approximately 15:00, israeli forces reestablished ‘Atarah checkpoint at the northern entrance of Bir Zeit, north of the city. Later, the two checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 17:30 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint under the bridge of Kherbtha al-Mesbah, southwest of Ramallah. At approximately 17:30, another checkpoint was established near the intersection of Beit ‘Oar al-Foqa village, southwest of Ramallah. At approximately 20:00, another checkpoint was established near the intersection of ‘Ofrah’ settlement, north of the city. Later, the two checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

· Jericho: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 10:30 on Friday, 13 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint near the entrance of Fasayel village, north of the city. At approximately 20:20, another checkpoint was established at the southern entrance of Jericho. Later, both checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

· Tulkarm: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 08:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint on the main road between Tulkarm and Nablus near the intersection of Beit Leed village in area called “Abu Martein”, east of Tulkarm. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 16:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed at ‘Annab military checkpoint which is established on the road between Tulkarm and Nablus, east of the city, tightened their restrictions against civilians and obstructed their movement. Later that day, the tightening ended and no arrests were reported. The tightening renewed at approximately 09:00 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015. At approximately 22:00, another checkpoint was established on the main road between Tulkarm and Nablus near the intersection of Beit Leed village in area called “Abu Martein”, east of Tulkarm. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 11:00 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint on the main road between Tulkarm and Nablus near the intersection of Bazaria village, east of Tulkarm. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

· Qalqilya: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 21:35 on Friday, 13 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the eastern entrance of Qalqilya. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 20:10 on Saturday, 14 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Azoun villages, east of Qalqilya. At approximately 21:40, Israeli forces established a similar checkpoint under the bridge of ‘Azoun village on the main road between Qalqilya and Tulkarm. The two checkpoints were later removed, and no arrests were reported.

· Jenin: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 21:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint between the villages of Ya’bod and Zebdah, southwest of Jenin. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 18:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the intersection of Ya’bod village, southwest of Jenin. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

Arrests and Maltreatment at Military Checkpoints

On Thursday morning, 12 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed at the entrance of ‘Gosh ‘Etzion’ settlement, south of Bethlehem, arrested Mo’az Yousif ‘Azmi Akhlil (22) from Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, when he had an interview with the Israeli intelligence. He was taken to an unknown destination.

On Saturday, 14 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested nine civilians, including six children, when they were present in the agricultural lands adjacent to the annexation wall near al-Yamoun village, northwest of Jenin. Eight of them were later released after the Palestinian Military Liaison intervened. The arrested persons were identified as:

1. Shafiq Mohammed Shafiq Waked (19) who was not released and taken to an unknown destination;
2. ‘Orwah Mohammed Salim Hammad (17);
3. Tariq Mohammed Hussein Waked (16);
4. Bahaa’ Bassam ‘Abdel Rahman Yehia (17);
5. Qotaybah Eyad Khalil Hammad (17);
6. Ahmed ‘Adnan Talal Saleh (17);
7. Ahmed Kamel Ibrahim Yehia (45), all of the aforementioned are from al-‘Erqah village, west of Jenin; and
8. Mohammed Ahmed Hasan Zad (13) from Nazlet Zaid village, southwest of the city.

At approximately 10:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli stationed at the entrance of ‘Gosh ‘Etzion’ settlement, south of Bethlehem, arrested Mohammed Ibrahim Men’em Abu ‘Ayyash (20) from Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, after he went to the Israeli intelligence in the aforementioned settlement. He was taken to an unknown destination.

At approximately 16:00 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested Mohammed Fayed Yousif Muheisen (31), Coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlements in the south of the West Bank from al-‘Aroub refugee camp, north of Hebron. The aforementioned civilian was arrested after his car was stopped by an Israeli GMC vehicle near ‘Ma’alim Adomim’ settlement, east of Jerusalem. He was taken to the police station in the aforementioned settlement and then released at approximately 03:00 on Wednesday, 18 March 2015, on bail of 7,000 NIS until his hearing at the court on 13 April 2015. Muheisen said to a PCHR fieldworker that the Israeli police questioned him about his work in the Popular Committees and accused him of inciting against Israel by organizing demonstrations in south of the West Bank.

At approximately 15:00 on Saturday, 15 March 215, two officers from the Israeli Border Police deployed in Beit Haninah neighborhood, east of Jerusalem, severely hit Mohammed Ziad Shaker Abu Mayyalah (29) from Zayf area, north of Yata, south of Hebron, with their feet and riffle’s butts. The aforementioned civilian was taken by a civilian car to one of the medical centers and then to al-Maqased Hospital in the city. It was found out that he sustained bruises in the chest.

On Wednesday morning, 15 March 2015, Israeli soldiers severely beat up Mohammed al-Bal’aawi (23) from al-Dheishah refugee camp, south of Bethlehem, while passing near the checkpoint that was established by the Israeli soldiers in ‘Osh al-Ghorab area, east of Beit Sahour. The injured young man was taken to Beit Jala Governmental Hospital to receive medical treatment, and medical sources later found out that he sustained moderate wounds.

Israeli Forces Arrest Trader at Beit Hanoun ‘Erez’ Crossing in the Northern Gaza Strip

At approximately 09:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed at Beit Hanoun ‘Erez’ crossing in the northern Gaza Strip arrested Muhsen Ihsan Hasan Hamdonah (34), who own Hyper Tech Company for Computers from al-Naser neighborhood in Gaza.

On Tuesday, 10 March 2015, Hamadonah went to have a security interview with the Israeli forces. At approximately 17:00 on the same day, they asked him to leave the crossing and come with documents and bills relevant to his work on Thursday, 12 March 2015. However, he did not go as the Liasion and Coordination Department informed him so. At approximately 20:00 on Saturday, 14 March 2015, Hamadonah received a call from the Liaison telling him that he must come on Sunday to the crossing. At approximately 09:00 on the aforementioned Sunday, Hamadonah went there. At approximately 20:00 on the same day, his brother Mohammed (27) received a call from someone who introduced himself as an officer from Ashkelon police and telling him that Muhsen Hamadonah was arrested.

Efforts to create Jewish demographic majority in occupied East Jerusalem:

Incursions and arrests

At approximately 03:00 on Sunday, 15 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested Mo’az Jamal Obaid (21) and Omer Mohammed Ebeid (19) and took them to an unknown destination.

At approximately 13:00, on the same day, Israeli forces arrested three girls and a woman, who were present around al-Selsela gate of al-Aqsa mosque in the old city. They took them to Beit el-Yaho facility to be questioned. The detainees were identified as: Aya Mousa al-Zaghal (12); Anhar Ahmed al-Ajlouni (12); Aya Ayman Abu Nab (16); and Randa Abu Snaina (36).

At approximately 04:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested four civilians, including three children. The detainees were identified as: Karim Ahmed Mostafa (15); Yusef Ahmed Mostafa (16); Shaker Mousa Mostafa (16) and Alaa Moheisen (19).

At approximately 05:00, on the same day, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-Amoud neighborhood, east of the old city. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested 3 children. The detaineesd were identified as: Baker Mohammed Owais (16); Nour Mohanned al-Zaghal (17); and Wa’el Hussein al-Salayma (16).

At approximately 15:00 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested a woman and three young men while being present in the yard of al-Aqsa Mosque in the old city under the pretext of riot. The arrested were identified as: Abeer Bashir (32); Mohammed al-Deeb (26); Mostafa Mowasi (23); and Shadi Sha’abna (23). They were taken to Bab al-Selsela facility to be questioned.

At approximately 17:00, on the same day, Israeli forces arrested Mahdi Hatem Abu Asab (11), while he was present in al-Qarmi neighborhood, in the old city. They took him to al-Qashala facilitiy to be questioned.

At approximately 03:00, on Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into Beit Hanina neighborhood, north of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested three civilians, including a child: Mostafa Mahmoud Abu Hadwan (17); Nour Castero (19); and Mohammed Abdul Rahman Qerresh (19).

At approximately 30:30, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to Mohammed Darweesh in al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They searched the house and arrested his son Khaled (17).

At approximately 04:00, on the same day, Israeli forces moved into al-Thawri neighborhood, south of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested two civilians, including a child: Mohammed Nouh al-Talhami (17); and Haroun Nasser Barqan (18).

At approximately 04:50, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-Amoud neighborhood, east of the old city. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested two children. The arrested were identified as: Shadi Ahmed al-Abasi (16); and Ahmed Yousef Abu Qalbain (15).

At approximately 11:00, Israeli forces arrested Jawad Siyam (42), director of the Information Center of Wadi Helwa, in Selwan village, south of the old city. Siyam was arrested while filming a building belonging to al-Abasi family which was seized by settlers in the morning.

Settler attacks in the city

On Friday, 13 March 2015, two settlers attacked Ahmed Mohammed Essa Abu Ta’ah (19) when he was in al-Masharef Mount area ‘the French Hill’, north of the old city. As a result, he sustained wounds in the face and bruises in the neck.

Mohammed Abu Ta’ah, the father of Ahmed, said to a PCHR fieldworker that two settlers attacked his son from behind. One of them hit him with a stick on his legs while the other tried to stab him with a knife. As a result, he sustained a wound around his nose. Ahmed defended himself and the settlers ran away towards ‘The French Hill’. Abu Ta’ah added that his son was transferred to Hadasa – al-Eisawiya hospital. He had bruises in the neck and a swelling in the face. He added that his son suffered severe bleeding as he was beat up.

At approximately 09:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces surrounded a house belonging to Sab Laban family house in Aqabet al-Khalidiya in the old city. They tried to evacuate the house for the interest of settlers. Israeli forces brought demolition tools to burst out the door and force the family get out of the house. The family lawyer intervened and obtained an order to delay the evacuation. Ahmed Sab Laban said to a PCHR fieldworker that his family rented the house in 1956 from the ‘Jordanian enemy’s property guard’, but settlers filed a case against the family under the pretext the building was not used. As a result, the judge of Magistrates’ court decided that the family evacuate the house.

On Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli Elad Association seized by forgery a building belonging to al-Malehi family and two tracts of land in Wadi Helwa neighborhood, south of the old city.

In the same context, under the protection of Israeli forces, dozens of armed settlers seized a 500-square-meter tract of plant belonging to al-Abasi family in Wadi Helwa neighborhood and established tin-made rooms on it. They also seized a 1,200-square-meter tract of land belonging to Sh’aban family in the same neighborhood. They cleaned the land and placed a caravan on it.

Restrictions on movement in the city

On Sunday morning, 15 March 2015, Israeli police denied eight buses from Sour Baher, south of East Jerusalem, access to al-Aqsa Mosque.

An eyewitness said to a PCHR fieldworker that Israeli police erected a checkpoint at the entrances of Sour Baher village, when twelve buses headed from the village to al-Aqsa mosque as part of tours organized by the village residents. During which, Israeli police stopped eight buses and tried to prevent drivers from proceeding. He added that the buses were stopped for two hours, during which, the police officers checked the passengers’ IDs and asked them some questions. It should be noted that the passengers were students, teachers and some families from the village. Once the passengers reached al-Aqsa mosque, their IDs were seized and bags were searched.

Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property:

Israel has continued its settlement activities in the oPt, a direct violation of international humanitarian law, and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.

At approximately 09:00 on Monday, 16 March 2015, Israeli forces notified Qana Valley farmers, northwest of Salfit, that they would uproot 240 olive trees aged six years from the lands of al-Tanour lands belonging to Hasan Mustafa Mansour, Mohammed ‘Abdel Fattah Zidan and Ahmed Khalil Mansour from the village. They gave the farmers 48 hours to remove the trees starting from the date of 15 March 2015 and threatened either to uproot the trees or to subject the three aforementioned farmers to trial, harm and detention.

At approximately 06:30 on Wednesday, 18 March 2015, Israeli forces backed by three bulldozers moved into Lherbet Makhoul area in the Northern Jordan Valley, east of Tubas. The Israeli bulldozers immediately levelled a residential compound for Palestinian shepherds. This compound is comprised of housing, sheep barns belonging to four families of 13 members. They levelled four residential tents; four kitchens; 15 barracks for sheltering sheep; a water tank and a number of Feedlots. It should be mentioned that this is the fourth time in which the Israeli forces uproot the residential tents and barns of the civilians in that area. They levelled residential tents and barns belong to Hasan Asmar Bsharat and his son, Ashraf; and Mahmoud and Mohammed ‘Ali Mahmoud Bsharat.

Israeli forces then headed to the nearby al-Hadideyah area, and their bulldozers levelled 60-square-meter barrack belonging to Ahmed ‘Abdullah Hafez Bani ‘Odah. They then went to al-Farisiyah area and confiscated two water tanks of a capacity of 12 cups. These tanks are donated by Palestinian Hydrology Group to provide drinking water for the residents of the area.

At approximately 10:00 on the Wednesday, Israeli forces moved into al-Thaheriyah village, south of Hebron. They stationed in Ma’ala Valley area in the southeast of the village and then cut down 10 almond trees and cactus seedlings in addition to confiscating them. The Civil Administration officer who accomopnied the Israeli soldiers sprayed chemicals at the rest of the tree stalks in the land. These trees belong to Adam Ibrahim Nassar al-Tol. Israeli forces claimed that this 40-dunum land is State Property, and none has the right to plant or enter it without a prior permit.

On Friday, 13 March 2015, settlers gathered on the main road between Jenin, Tulkarm and Nablus near the entrance of Silet al-Thaher village, south of Jenin. The settlers fired in the air and threw stones at the passing Palestinian vehicles traveling on the aforementioned road. Minutes later, the Israeli forces secured the settlers’ withdrawal and reopened the road. No further incidents were reported.

At approximately 16:30 on Tuesday, 17 March 2015, Israeli settlers gathered on the main road between Jenin, Tulkarm and Nablus near the entrance of Silet al-Thaher village, south of Jenin. The settlers threw stones at the passing Palestinian vehicles traveling on the aforementioned road. As a result, the windshield of a car belonging to Feras ‘Ali ‘Obeid (25) was broken. Minutes later, the Israeli forces arrived to secure the settlers’ withdrawal and re-open the road. No further incidents were reported.

Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Uma l-Rayhan village, which has benn isolated from its surroundings due to the annexation wall, southwest of Jenin. They levelled vacant lands in the vicinity of a barrack used to manufacture marble. This barrack belongs to Sharif Kamel Mohammed Zaid (54) and blocked the roads to it with sand barriers.

Recommendations to the International Community:

PCHR emphasizes the international community’s position that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation, in spite of Israeli military redeployment outside the Gaza Strip in 2005. PCHR further confirms that Israeli forces continued to impose collective punishment measures on the Gaza Strip, which have escalated since the 2006 Palestinian parliamentary elections, in which Hamas won the majority of seats of the Palestinian Legislative Council. PCHR stresses that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and the international humanitarian law, especially the Hague Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land and the Geneva Conventions. Israel is bound to apply the international human rights law and the law of war sometime reciprocally and other times in parallel in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for victims.

In light of continued arbitrary measures, land confiscation and settlement activities in the West Bank, and the continued aggression against civilians in the Gaza Strip, PCHR calls upon the international community, especially the United Nations, the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Convention and the European Union – in the context of their natural obligation to respect and enforce the international law – to cooperate and act according to the following recommendations:

1. PCHR calls upon the international community and the United Nations to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination, through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine;

2. PCHR calls upon the United Nations to provide international protection to Palestinians in the oPt, and to ensure the non-recurrence of aggression against the oPt, especially the Gaza Strip;

3. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to compel Israel, as a High Contracting Party to the Conventions, to apply the Conventions in the oPt;

4. PCHR calls upon the Parties to international human rights instruments, especially the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, to pressurize Israel to comply with their provisions in the oPt, and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the concerned committees;

5. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfil their obligation to ensure the application of the Conventions, including extending the scope of their jurisdiction in order to prosecute suspected war criminals, regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator and the place of a crime, to pave the way for prosecuting suspected Israeli war criminals and end the longstanding impunity they have enjoyed;

6. PCHR calls on States that apply the principle of universal jurisdiction not to surrender to Israeli pressure to limit universal jurisdiction to perpetuate the impunity enjoyed by suspected Israeli war criminals;

7. PCHR calls upon the international community to act in order to stop all Israeli settlement expansion activities in the oPt through imposing sanctions on Israeli settlements and criminalizing trading with them;

8. PCHR calls upon the UN General Assembly to transfer the Goldstone Report to the UN Security Council in order to refer it to the International Criminal Court in accordance with Article 13(b) of the Rome Statute;

9. PCHR calls upon the United Nations to confirm that holding war criminals in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a precondition to achieve stability and peace in the regions, and that peace cannot be built on the expense of human rights;

10. PCHR calls upon the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council to explicitly declare that the Israeli closure policy in Gaza and the annexation wall in the West Bank are illegal, and accordingly refer the two issues to the UN Security Council to impose sanctions on Israel to compel it to remove them;

11. PCHR calls upon the international community, in light of its failure to the stop the aggression on the Palestinian people, to at least fulfil its obligation to reconstruct the Gaza Strip after the series of hostilities launched by Israel which directly targeted the civilian infrastructure;

12. PCHR calls upon the United Nations and the European Union to express a clear position towards the annexation wall following the international recognition of the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders, as the annexation wall seizes large parts of the State of Palestine;

13. PCHR calls upon the European Union to activate Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which provides that both sides must respect human rights as a precondition for economic cooperation between the EU states and Israel, and the EU must not ignore Israeli violations and crimes against Palestinian civilians;

14. PCHR calls upon the Palestinian leadership to sign and accede to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and the Geneva Conventions, and calls upon the international community, especially the United Nations, to encourage the State of Palestine to accede to international human rights law and humanitarian law instruments.

Full, detailed document, including info on patrols and border crossings available at the official PCHR website.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
« »

IMEMC & Agencies

Related Articles