PCHR Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the oPt (26 March – April 01 2015)

06 Apr
6:44 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 26 March – April 01 2015.Israeli attacks in the West Bank & Gaza:

Shootings

During the reporting period, Israeli forces wounded 13 civilians, including an international solidarity activist, a child and a female journalist, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Eleven of them, including the international activist, child and journalist, were wounded in the West Bank and the two others were wounded in the Gaza Strip. In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces continued to target Palestinian fishermen and open fire at border areas along the Gaza Strip.

In the West Bank, on 30 March 2015, journalist Marwa Ebeid (24) sustained a shrapnel wound to the leg when she was covering a protest marking Land Day in the old city of East Jerusalem.

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, eight protestors, including an international activist, were wounded in Bil’in weekly protest, west of Ramallah, and Kufor Qaddoum, northeast of Qalqilia.

In the same context, two Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded during other protests organized at the western entrance of Selwad village, northeast of Ramallah, and the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah.

In the Gaza Strip, on 30 March 2015, two Palestinian civilians were wounded when Israeli forces stationed along the border fence, east of Khan Yunis, opened fire at a group of Palestinian civilians who were present to the west of the said fence to commemorate the Land Day.

In the same context, on 27 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at a group of Palestinian civilians who were present about 10 – 100 meters to the west of the said fence. Israeli forces continued firing sporadically for an hour. As a result, three civilians suffered tear gas inhalation, but no other casualties were reported. A similar incident recurred in the east of Khan Yunis at approximately 12:00 on Saturday, 28 March 2015. As a result, journalist Mothanna al-Najjar, 21, suffered tear gas inhalation. Moreover, the eastern cemetery area, east of Jabalia village, north of the Gaza Strip, witnessed three shooting incidents, but no casualties were reported.

As part of targeting fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea, on 26 March 2015, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Waha resort, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at and chased Palestinian fishing boats.

On 27 March 2015, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Sudaniya area, west of Jabalia, north of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats. Similar attacks occurred on Saturday morning and afternoon, 28 March 2015; at approximately 07:50 on Sunday, 29 March 2015; and at approximately 06:50 on Monday, 30 March 2015. However, neither casualties nor material damage were reported.

Incursions

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 51 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 10 ones in East Jerusalem. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 72 Palestinians, including 14 children and a woman. Thirty-nine of these Palestinians, including eight children and the woman, 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.

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

On Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into Deir Mousa area, west of Sorif village, west of Hebron. The civil administration officer who accompanied the Israeli soldiers distributed three notices to stop construction work in three houses on the pretext of no construction licence.

On Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli settlers from ‘Asfar’ settlement and ‘Bani Kadim’ settlement outpost established on Palestinian lands confiscated from the eastern side of al-Shyoukh and Sa’ir villages, northeast of Hebron uprooted and destroyed 1200 olive and almond seedlings, which is only one months old.

On Sunday, 29 March 2015, an Israeli settler deliberately ran down a herd of sheep while passing the main road (Qana Valley Street). As a result, two sheep had fractures while 27 others were hurt. Israeli forces also handcuffed the aforementioned civilian following the attack and then took him to ‘Karnei Shomron’ police station and detained him for hours until he was released.

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, eight protestors, including an international solidarity activist.

In the same context, two Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded in two protests at the western entrance of Silwad village, northeast of Ramallah; and at the southern entrance of al-Jalazoun refugee camp, north of the city.

Additionally, Israeli forces arrested three civilians, including Jamil al-Barghouthi (47), the acting head of the popular committee against the annexation wall and settlement activities, and a 17-year-old girl.

(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 27 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. 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, three protestors, including two Palestinians and an international solidarity activist, were wounded. They also detained Mahmoud Khaled Abu Rahma (12) for three hours. An Icelandic solidarity activist (28) sustained a bullet wound to the right elbow and was taken to Palestine Medical Compound in Ramallah; an 18-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg; and a 50-year-old sustained a bullet wound to the back.

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 al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of Ramallah, to start the weekly peaceful protest against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities. They made their way towards Palestinian lands that Israeli settlers from the nearby ‘Halmish’ settlement are trying to seize. Israeli soldiers closed all the village’s entrances to prevent the Palestinian and international solidarity activists and journalists from participating in the protest. Of the detained activists and journalists, was Sarah al-Athera (27), reporter of Palestine TV, who was questioned on some pictures of protestors in previous protests; and Feras Khalil Yusef Haikal (41), director of Ramallah and al-Bireh Governorate office, who was violently pulled from his car, attacked and verbally insulted in Arabic by an Israeli officer. Haikal and Dr. Laila Ghannam, Mayor of Ramallah, were threatened to be arrested if they participated in the protest. When protestors reached the abovementioned lands, but Israeli soldiers denied them access and fired live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters. As a result, a number of protestors suffered tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten up by Israeli soldiers. Furthermore, Israeli forces arrested Jamil Barghouthi (47), the acting director of the committee against the annexation wall and settlement activities, and took him to Ofer detention facility, southwest of the city.

At approximately 12:30, 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, 5 protestors were wounded. A 21-year-old civilian sustained two bullet wounds to the left and right legs, 22-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the lower abdomen, a 44-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the belly, a 47-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the right leg and an 18-year-old civilian sustained a bullet wound to the head.

Other demonstrations

Following the Friday prayer, 27 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, a 15-year-old male sustained a bullet wound to the right leg and was taken to Palestine Medical Compound.

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, a number of protestors suffered tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were beaten up by Israeli soldiers.

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, a 23-year-old civilian sustained burns in the face and neck as he was hit by a gas canister. He was taken to Palestine Medical Compound in Ramallah to receive the necessary medical treatment.

Protests markind Land Day

At approximately 10:00 on Monday, 30 March 2015, two protests were organized on the 39th anniversary of the Land Day. The first one headed from al-Shuhada intersection in the centre of Nablus, and the other headed from the centre of Howara village, south of the city, towards Howara checkpoint at the southern entrance of the city. The protesters were surprised by the big number of Israeli vehicles and soldiers at the checkpoint. Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs and sprayed pepper spray at the protestors to disperse them. In the meanwhile, Israeli soldiers attacked journalists covering the protest and fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them to prevent them from doing so. The attacked journalists were: Ahmed Tal’at Fawzi Hassan, Alaa Badarna, Nidal Ishtaiya, Ja’fer Ishtaiya and Hassan al-Titi. Moreover, Israeli forces attacked paramedics who were at the checkpoint and inside the village and prevented them from offering first aid to the wounded protestors.

At approximately 11:00, on the same day, dozens of Palestinian youngsters and farmers gathered at the main entrance to Silwad village, northeast of Ramallah, to organize a protest on the 39th anniversary of Land Day. They made their way to agricultural lands, south of the village, to plant olive seedlings in lands threatened to be forcibly seized by settlers near ‘Ofra’ settlement. Israeli forces deployed since early morning in the abovementioned area. Once protesters approached, Israeli forces fired sound bombs. In the meanwhile, protestors and Israeli soldiers quarrelled. As a result, many protestors suffered tear gas inhalation and others sustained bruises as they were harshly pushed by Israeli soldiers. Furthermore, Israeli forces arrested Abdul Hadi Ahmed Hussein Hejazi (20), from the eastern Mazra’a village, and took him to an unknown destination.

In the afternoon, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered in front of Ofer detention facility, southwest of Ramallah, to organize a protest commemorating the 39th anniversary of Land Day. Israeli forces closed the facility’s main gate and were deployed around. They also fired used live ammunition and fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors, who ran away in the olive farms. As a result, a number of protestors suffered tear gas inhalation. Israeli soldiers also arrested Rowan Helmi Mohammed Abed Araj (17) and took her into the facility. At approximately 20:00, the girl was released at Qalandia military checkpoint, north of Jerusalem, as she was delivered to the Palestinian liaison.

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 7 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, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Beit Kahel village, northwest of the city. At approximately 16:00, another checkpoint was established at the northern entrance of Halhoul, north of Hebron. Later, the two checkpoints were removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 07:30 on Monday, 30 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance of Hebron. 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, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Aaboud village, northwest of the city. At approximately 20:30, Israeli forces established another checkpoint at the entrance of Termes’ayah village, north of the city. Both checkpoints were removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 10:00 on Saturday, 28 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 Qebya village, west of the city. Later, both 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, 27 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint near the entrance of Fasayel village, north of the city. Later, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 20:00 on Saturday, 28 March 2015, another checkpoint was established at the southern entrance of Jericho. 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 18:00 on Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint between the villages of ‘Ezbet Salman and Ras ‘Atiyah, east of Qalqilya. At approximately 19:20, another checkpoint was established between the villages of Amatin and al-Fondoq, northeast of the city. Both checkpoints were later removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 19:30 on Saturday, 28 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the eastern entrance of Qalqilya. At approximately 21:25, the checkpoint was removed and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 01:10 on Saturday, 29 March 2015, Israeli forces established another checkpoint between the villages of ‘Azoun and Kufor Tholth, east of Qalqilya. At approximately 03:00, the checkpoint was removed, and no arrests were reported.

Tulkarm: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 12:30 on Thursday, 26 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 12:30 on Saturday, 28 March 2015, at approximately 10:30 on Sunday, 29 March 2015, at approximately 07:00 on Monday, 30 March 2015, at approximately 22:30 on Monday, 30 March 2015, and at approximately 14:00 on Wednesday, 01 April 2015.

At approximately 20:00 on the same day, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Shofah village, east of Tulkarm. The checkpoint was later removed, and no arrests were removed.

At approximately 23:30 on Friday, 27 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Ezbet Shofah village, east of Tulkarm. The checkpoint was later removed, and no arrests were removed.

Salfit: Israeli forces have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. At approximately 23:30 on Monday, 30 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of Deir Ballut village, west of Salfit. Later, the two checkpoints were removed, and no arrests were reported.

At approximately 15:00 on Tuesday, 31 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the western entrance of Kafr al-Deek, west of Salfit. Around the same time, another checkpoint was established at the entrance of Deir Ballut village, west of Salfit. Both checkpoints were later removed, and no arrests were reported.

Arrests and Maltreatment at Military Checkpoints

At approximately 18:00 on Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the eastern entrance of Qalqilya. They arrested Amir ‘Ali Soliman Abu Shehab (25) from Qalqilya and withdrew later taking the aforementioned to an unknown destination.

At approximately 18:00 on Friday, 27 March 2015, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance of ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqilya. They arrested Khaled Isma’il Saleh Sweidan (18) from the aforementioned village and withdrew later taking him to an unknown destination.

At approximately 01:30 on Sunday, 29 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed at Movedetan checkpoint established on the main road between Jenin and the northern villages of Tulkarm near the entrance of ‘Mavi Dutan’ settlement established on Palestinian lands, southwest of Jenin tightened their arbitrary restrictions against Palestinian civilians and obstructed their movement. When Saber Khaled Saber Masarwah (26) from Jenin, was passing through the checkpoint, he was stopped and questioned on the spot. Israeli soldiers then arrested the aforementioned civilian and took him to an unknown destination.

At approximately 05:00 the same day, Israeli forces arrested four workers from Hosan village, west of Bethlehem, when they were trying to go to their work in Occupied Jerusalem on the pretext of not obtaining permits. The workers were arrested when they were near ‘Tsour Hadasa’ settlement adjacent to Foqin Valley village, west of Bethlehem. They were identified as Mahmoud ‘Abdel ‘Aziz Shoushah (42); Mohammed Ismai’l Hamamrah (35); Tariq Isma’il Hamarah (28); and Ahmed Najeh al-‘Ezzah (19).

At approximately 10:00 on Monday, 30 March 2015, Israeli forces stationed at the entrance of ‘Gosh ‘Etzion’ settlement, south of Bethlehem, arrested Qosay Ra’ed Abu Hashem (15) from Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron. They arrested the aforementioned child after heading for an interview with the Israeli intelligence. He was taken to an unknown destination.

At approximately 14:00 on the same Monday, Israeli forces stationed at the checkpoint of Jab’ah village, west of Bethlehem, arrested Fadi Hani ‘Aadi (23) and his brother Mohammed (22) while passing by the area. They were taken to an unknown destination.

At approximately 19:00 on Tuesday, 31 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested Ahmed Sarhan Sabatin (16) while passing through a checkpoint established by the Israeli soldiers in al-Mtaynah area in Housan village, west of Bethlehem. He was then taken to an unknown destination.

Israeli forces arrest two traders from Rafah at Beit Hanoun ‘ Erez’ Crossing in Northern Gaza Strip

At approximately 11:00 on Monday, 30 March 2015, Israeli forces arrested two traders while trying to travel through Beit Hanoun ‘Erez’ Crossing in the northern Gaza Strip. The detained persons were identified as Sa’id ‘Ayesh ‘Abed Abu Tohlah (55) and his brother ‘Aadel (39).

According to information obtained by PCHR, the two brothers went to Beit Hanoun Crossing to travel to Ramallah in the West Bank. When they arrived at the crossing, Israeli forces arrested them. The son of Sa’id received a call later informing him that his father and uncle were arrested by the Israeli forces.

Efforts to create Jewish demographic majority in occupied East Jerusalem

House demolitions and demolition notices

At approximately 11:00 on Sunday, 29 March 2015, Kefah Da’na demolished parts of his house in Bab al-Selsela neighbourhood in the old city of East Jerusalem, to avoid paying fines to the Israeli municipality.

Da’na said to a PCHR fieldworker that 15 years ago, he built a kitchen and a bathroom in his house, but six years ago he received a demolition notice from the Israeli municipality on the pretext they were not licensed. Da’na added that he could delay the demolition of the kitchen and bathroom throughout the past years and paid over NIS 60,000 for that. Now he was obliged to demolish them by his own to avoid paying the municipality’s fine. Da’na said that he obtained a permit to repair his house because of problems in the infrastructure and the walls dampness, but the so-called Antiquities Authority imposed many restrictions for the house reparations.

At approximately 09:00 on Tuesday, 31 March 2015, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a number of residential facilities and horse barns in Wad al-Jouz neighbourhood, east of the old city of East Jerusalem, without prior warning.

An eyewitness said that Israeli forces accompanied by the municipality bulldozers moved into Wad al-Jouz neighbourhood and closed all entrances leading to that neighbourhood, few meters away from al-Asbat Gate of al-Aqsa Mosque. He added that they demolished facilities belonging to the Amr family and horses facilities belonging to Toutah family without prior warning.

Dr Jamal Amr said to a PCHR fieldworker that Israeli forces surrounded his house and kept all his family members in a room to demolish parts of the house. They demolished a room, a balcony, astore and fences. He said that Israeli soldiers harshly pushed his two brothers: Nour al-Din and Sharif. He also pointed that the demolished facilities were built before the Israeli occupation of Jerusalem in 1967.

Hani Toutah said to the PCHR fieldworker that Israeli bulldozers demolished five rooms belonging to him; four of which were used as horse stables and the fifth one was used for his kids to play in. he added that the municipality started demolishing without prior warning or demolition notice although the room were licensed by the municipality 25 years ago.

In the same context, at approximately 12:00, Israeli bulldozers demolished foundations of 3 houses belonging to al-Abbasi family in al-Mukaber Mount neighbourhood under the pretext they were not licensed. Sa’id al-Abbasi said to PCHR’s fieldworker that his family started laying the foundation of the house four months ago because two of his sons and his brother (about 20 persons) moved in that place. He explained that the family learnt about the demolition order that was pinned on the foundations three days earlier. The family tried to defer the order, but bulldozers demolished the foundations before any legal measure was taken.

Shooting incidents

At approximately 16:00 on Monday, 30 March 2015, dozens of Palestinians organized a protest on the Land Day in the old city of East Jerusalem. They headed from al-Bab Amoud area to Sultan Suleiman Street then Saladin Street. They chanted slogans against Israeli occupation and settlement activities. In the meanwhile, Israeli soldiers chased the protestors and fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, journalist Marwa Ebeid (24) sustained sound bomb shrapnel wound to the leg. Israeli forces also arrested Noha al-Qotob, Mohammed Jaber (23) and Fathi Nasser (21).

Incursions and arrests

At approximately 05:00 on Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into a number of neighbourhoods in the old city of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested three civilians, including two children: Saleh Sandouqa (17), Khaled Malhas (16) and Mohammed Bouja (19).

At approximately 08:00 on the same day, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to Ali Sharabati in Wad al-Jouz neighbourhood, east of the old city in East Jerusalem. They searched the house and arrested his son Ahmed (14).

At approximately 05:00 on Sunday, 29 March 2015, Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to Khalil al-Abassi in Ein al-Louza neighbourhood in Silwan village, south of East Jerusalem. They photographed the house and arrested his sons Abdul Rahim (30) and Ayed (25).

At approximately 04:00, on Monday, 30 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-Amoud neighbourhood, east of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested four civilians: Jihad Taha (30), Amr Abu Arafa (28), Mohammed Rokon (22) and Jihad Aweida (40).

At approximately 04:30, Israeli forces moved into Shu’fat neighbourhood, north of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested Abdul Nasser Essa (15) and Omer Mazen Abu Asab (15).

At approximately 05:00, Israeli forces moved into a number of neighbourhoods in the old city of East Jerusalem. They raided a number of houses from which they arrested three civilians: Ehab al-Jallad (39); Mohammed Mona (20); and Mohammed Bseiso (20).

At approximately 12:00, Israeli forces arrested two Palestinians while being in al-Wad neighbourhood in the old city of East Jerusalem: Naji Akram Zgheer (20) and Sofyan Lo’ai Jadallah (19).

At approximately 13:00, Israeli forces arrested two Palestinian women who were near al-Ghawanma Gate of al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem: Ayda Ahmed al-Seidawi (58) and Alaa al-Joulani (46).

At approximately 13:30, Israeli forces arrested Mahdi al-Abassi (26) while going to a court hearing for his cousins (Abdul Rahim and Ayed) in the district court in East Jerusalem.

At approximately 16:00, Israeli forces arrested Tareq Mohammed al-Shweiki (14) when he was in al-Aqsa Mosque yards in East Jerusalem. He was taken to al-Qashala police station.

At approximately 19:00, Israeli forces harshly beat and arrested Ahmed Mansour al-Resheq (13) when he was present around his family’s house in Ein al-Louza neighbourhood in Silwan village, south of the old city in East Jerusalem. They took him to Saladin police station to be questioned.

At approximately 11:00 on Tuesday, 31 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into some neighbourhoods in the old city of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested six civilians, including two children: Hejazi Abu Sbaih (21); Yasser Ahmed Najib (23); Wesam Nasser Seder (22); Adli Nasser al-Din (19); Feras Yusif Dandis (13); and Mohammed Sa’id Iskafi (15).

At approximately 21:00, on the same day, Israeli forces arrested three Palestinian youngsters from al-Mukaber Mount neighbourhood while crossing via al-Nafaq checkpoint, south of East Jerusalem. The arrested were: Murad Tawfiq Abu Sarhan (23); Aziz Mahmoud Abu Sarhan (24); and Ali Hassan Ebeidiya (24).

At approximately 22:00, Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Abu Shousha in Wad al-Jouz neighbourhood, east of the old city of East Jerusalem. They arrested his son Yusef and took him to an unknown destination.

At approximately 23:00, Israeli forces moved into some neighbourhoods in the old city of East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a number of houses from which they arrested three civilians: Omer Mo’taz Wazwaz (21); Hazem Nour al-Din al-Dajani (19); and Malek Ahmed Shweiki (19).

At approximately 01:00 on Wednesday, 01 April 2015, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to paramedic Fo’ad Ebeid (23) in al-Eisawiya village, north of East Jerusalem. They arrested the aforementioned person and took him to an unknown destination.

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 10:30 on Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli forces moved into Deir Mousa area, west of Sorif village, west of Hebron. They stationed in the vicinity of the houses, and the civil officer who accompanied the Israeli soldiers distributed three notices to stop construction work in three houses on the pretext of the lack of construction licences.

The notices were about the following:
1. A 150-square-meter under-construction house belonging to Zaher Soliman Younis Safi (30);
2. A 150-square-meter inhabited house belonging to Maha ‘Issa Mousa Ghneimat (53); and
3. A 150-square-meter under-finishing house belonging to Mousa Soliman Mousa Ghneimat (47)

On Thursday, 26 March 2015, Israeli settlers from ‘Asfar’ settlement and ‘Bani Kadim’ settlement outpost established on Palestinian lands confiscated from the eastern side of al-Shyoukh and Sa’ir villages, northeast of Hebron, uprooted and destroyed 1,200 olive and almond seedlings, which were planted only one month ago. The seedlings were donated by the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture and YMCA. The attacked land belong to the al-‘Ayaydah family and is located in al-Waslah area, east of al-Shyoukh village.

At approximately 10:00 on Sunday, 29 March 2015, an Israeli settler deliberately ran down a herd of sheep belonging to Sa’ed ‘Abdel Fattah Rashid Bashir (38) from Jeensafout village, east of Qalqilya, while passing the main road (Qana Valley Street). As a result, two sheep had fractures while 27 others were hurt. Israeli forces also handcuffed the aforementioned civilian following the attack and took him to ‘Karni Shomron ‘ police station and held him for hours before releasing him.

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