The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OCHA)
Protection of Civilians Report for February 16 – March 1, 2021
Seventeen Palestinians and five Israeli Border Police officers were injured in the West Bank. Among the Palestinians, a 16-year-old boy was shot by Israeli forces with live ammunition, reportedly while walking near the Barrier in Saffa village (Ramallah). Seven others were wounded in protests against the establishment of a settlement outpost on Beit Dajan land (Nablus) and against settlement expansion in Kufur Qaddoum (Qalqilia). Two Palestinians were injured in clashes that erupted during two search-and-arrest operations in Ad Duheisha refugee camp (Bethlehem) and Abu Shukheidim village (Ramallah). Five Israeli Border Police officers were stoned and injured in an operation in Al-‘Isawiya (East Jerusalem). Three Palestinians, including an elderly man and a child, were physically assaulted by Israeli forces in Huwwara (Nablus) and An Nuwei’ma (Jericho). Overall, four of the injuries were treated for tear gas inhalation, four were hit by rubber bullets, three were physically assaulted, and two were shot with live ammunition. The remaining four were injured when their car crashed while they were being chased by an Israeli military jeep near Ein Yabrud village (Ramallah).
Israeli forces carried out 184 search-and-arrest operations and arrested 158 Palestinians across the West Bank. The Jerusalem governorate recorded the highest number of operations (60), mostly in East Jerusalem.
In Gaza, on at least 29 occasions, Israeli forces opened warning fire near the perimeter fence or off the coast, presumably to enforce access restrictions. On another two occasions, Israeli forces conducted land levelling near the fence. In a separate incident, two Palestinian men were injured after tampering with Explosive Remnants of War, east of Gaza City.
Citing the lack of building permits, 35 Palestinian-owned structures were demolished or seized, displacing 98 people, of whom 53 were children, and otherwise affecting about 60. On 22 February, the Israeli authorities confiscated another 18 residential and animal structures in Humsa – Al Bqai’a, most of which had been provided as a humanitarian response to previous demolitions and confiscations; ten households, comprising over 60 people, including 36 children, were again displaced. Also in Area C, a family of seven was displaced when their home was demolished in Al Khadr (Bethlehem), and the livelihoods of four families were affected by the demolition of vegetable stalls in Hijra (Hebron). Twenty-eight people were displaced in Al ‘Isawiya and Ras al ‘Amud (occupied East Jerusalem), when three houses were demolished by the Israeli authorities or ‘self-demolished’ by their owners.
Perpetrators known or believed to be Israeli settlers injured a 17-year-old Palestinian boy and damaged Palestinian-owned properties, including vehicles and trees. The boy was stoned and injured in Sheikh Jarrah (occupied East Jerusalem), reportedly by Israelis gathering to celebrate Purim. In the same context, several cars belonging to Palestinians were stoned and damaged while travelling near the old city of Jerusalem and near Yitzhar settlement (Nablus). Also during Purim celebrations, Israeli settlers tried to break into Palestinian houses in the old city of Hebron. In three separate incidents in Ramallah, several Palestinian-plated cars parked near Shilo settlement, and two trucks in Ein Samiya and Kafr Malik, were vandalized. In another four incidents attributed to settlers in Nablus, as reported by Palestinian sources, houses were stoned and a water reservoir was damaged in Asira al Qibliya; fences surrounding agricultural land were vandalized in Burin; seven sheep were stolen in Jalud; and olive saplings were uprooted in Beit Dajan and Qaryut. In Ein al Hilwe (Tubas), a shepherd reported that a vehicle believed to be driven by settlers had killed five of his sheep. In a number of incidents, Palestinians reported that Israeli settlers had tried to take over Palestinian land in Al Baqa’a (Hebron) and attacked herders in Kisan and a shop owner in Husan (both villages in Bethlehem), stealing money.
Perpetrators believed to be Palestinians injured a 15-year-old Israeli boy in Hebron’s old city. Eighteen Israeli-plated vehicles were hit by stones and damaged while travelling on West Bank roads, according to Israeli sources.