Israeli occupation forces (IOF) continued to commit crimes and multi-layered violations against Palestinian civilians and their properties, including raids into Palestinian cities that are characterized with excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians that are mostly conducted after midnight and in the early morning hours. Even more, IOF continued its demolition operations and delivery of cease-construction and demolition notices in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 207 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by IOF and settlers in the oPt.
IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity:
Four Palestinians, including two children, sustained wounds as a result of IOF excessive use of force against civilians in the West Bank: a child was wounded at the weekly Kufur Qaddoum protests in Qalqilia; another in a protest in Beit Dajan in Nablus; another child sustained wounds in an IOF raid on a former Palestinian prisoner’s house in occupied east Jerusalem, noting that the prisoner was released that same day after 20 years in Israeli prisons. Dozens of others suffocated due to tear gas inhalation, and others were wounded in IOF assault during raids on Palestinian houses across the West Bank.
In the Gaza Strip, 3 IOF shootings were reported on agricultural lands eastern Gaza; and 3 at fishing boats in the Gaza sea.
IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians:
IOF carried out 121 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, enticing fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 62 Palestinians were arrested, including 3 children and 2 women, including a journalist who was detained while conducting an interview. She was detained for several others before her release.
In the Gaza Strip, IOF conducted two limited incursions into eastern Deir Balah.
PCHR documented the following incidents:
Hebron: cease-construction notice served against a house in eastern Yatta.
Bethlehem: cease-construction notice served against a retaining wall in Tuqu.
PCHR fieldworkers reported and documented 3 attacks:
Bethlehem: Palestinian civilian assaulted in southern Bethlehem.
Salfit: vehicle vandalized; agricultural room destroyed; stone chains destroyed, and 15 olive trees cut.
Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:
The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the history of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life. The United Nations (UN) confirmed that the Gaza conditions are worsening, with deteriorating health, power, and water services. The UN emphasized that the Gaza Strip requires immense efforts in the housing and education sectors and to create job opportunities.
Meanwhile, IOF continued to divide the West Bank into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation since the Second Intifada and with temporary and permanent checkpoints, where civilian movement is restricted, and they are subject to arrest.
I. Shooting and other Violations of the Right to Life and Bodily Integrity
At approximately 21:30 on Thursday, 25 March 2021, IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, east of Deir al-Balah city in the center of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at agricultural lands; no causalities were reported.
At approximately 09:00 on Friday, 26 March 2021, IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, east of Khan Younis, opened fire at agricultural lands, east of Al-Fukhari village, east of Khan Younis. At approximately 12:00, IOF re-opened fire at agricultural lands; no causalities were reported.
At approximately 12:30, IOF stationed at the northern entrance to Kufur Qaddoum village, north of Qalqilya, suppressed a protest organized by dozens of Palestinian young men. IOF chased Palestinians gathered in the area, clashed with them, and fired sponge bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at them. As a result, a 17-year-old child was hit with a teargas canister in his foot.
At approximately 13:30, a peaceful protest took off in front of Beit Dajan village council, east of Nablus, north of the West Bank, at the call of the villagers and with the participation of the National Action Factions in Nablus, towards lands under the threat of confiscation, east of the village. The protestors raised Palestinian flags and chanted slogans against the Israeli occupation and settlers. When the protestors arrived at the area, they found a large number of Israeli soldiers awaiting them. The protestors chanted slogans again against the Israeli occupation and settlers. IOF immediately suppressed the protest and fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, a two men were shot with rubber bullets in their lower limbs and taken to Rafidia Hospital. Also, many civilians suffocated due to teargas inhalation.
At approximately 07:50 on Saturday, 27 March 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and opened sporadic fire around them, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
At approximately 04:00 on Sunday, 28 March 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore and off al-Soudaniyia Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles, opened heavy fire around them and fire sound bombs at them until 09:00, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
At approximately 10:00, Israeli authorities suppressed activities organized by the Women Centre that belongs to al-Zaytoun Mount Club in al-Tur neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, to celebrate Mother’s Day. Israeli authorities claimed that the celebration is funded by the Palestinian authority (PA). Mohammed al-Sayyad, Secretary of al-Zaytoun Mount Club, said that Israeli Intelligence Service along with IOF raided al-Zaytoun Mount stadium during the preparation for the launch of the event, which is annually held to celebrate the Mother’s Day. Al-Sayyad clarified that IOF stopped the event, got the attendees out of the stadium, and arrested Head of the Women’s Centre, Ikhlas al-Sayyad, along with the young man, Malek Ghazi al-Moghrabi, after severely beating him up. Al-Sayyad pointed out that IOF hanged a ban order signed by the Minister of Internal Security in the Israeli government on the stadium gate and warned of holding the event in another place in the city. Lawyer Heba al-Qadoumi said that the Israeli Intelligence Service banned for the 2nd time an event organized by al-Zaytoun Mount Club during this month; the first event was on the Women’s Day and the second was on the Mother’s Day, noting that these events were organized at call of the villagers and without any coordination with Palestinian official bodies. Al-Qadoumi pointed out that IOF released Ikhlas al-Sayyad few hours after interrogating her. Also, Malek al-Moghrabi was released, on condition of house arrest for five days.
At approximately 06:30 on Monday, 29 March 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore and off al-Soudaniyia Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles, opened heavy fire around them and fire sound bombs at them, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
At approximately 22:00 on Tuesday, 30 March 2021, IOF raided a house belonging to a former prisoner, Majd Abed al-Raheem Barbar, 45, in Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, and re-arrested him a day after his release from the Israeli jails, noting that he served 20 years in prison. IOF also indiscriminately fired sound bombs and teargas canisters in the area. Barbar family said that IOF raided a tent established by the family near their residential building entrance to receive visitors welcoming him. The family clarified that IOF arrested their son Majd under the pretext of organizing a celebration in his house yard and raising Palestinian flags. The family added that IOF pepper-sprayed some visitors, pushed and beat them up and indiscriminately fired sound bombs and teargas canisters in the area. As a result, many civilians, including Majd’s mother and wife, suffocated due to teargas inhalation. Furthermore, it was reported that a child named Mohammed Hitham al-Daddou, 11, was shot with a rubber bullet in his right hand. The family pointed out that the Israeli authorities extended Majd’s detention for next day evening in order to appear before the Israeli court, which decided to release him, provided that the family will not fire fireworks, they will preserve social distance among the visitors and wearing masks, and they will not organize any celebrations in the house yard. The Palestinian Red Crescent Crews stated that they treated 14 people when IOF raided Majd’s house; 12 of those suffocated due to teargas inhalation; one was beaten up by IOF, and another one was shot with a rubber bullet. Some of those wounded were taken to al-Maqased Hospital in al-Tur neighborhood for treatment. *** It should be noted that in afternoon, IOF moved into Al-Eizariya village, where they raided the Red Palace Hall near the village entrance, prevented holding a celebration for Majd Barbar and warned the hall owner of hosting Barbar family.
II. Incursions and arrests
Thursday, 25 March 2021:
At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into al-Dheisha refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Hamza Naser Abu ‘Ajamiya, 21, and Abdullah Khaled Abu Hadeed, 18. Meanwhile, IOF handed Oday Adnan Shehada, 25, a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of the city.
Around the same time, IOF moved into Beit Kahil, north of Hebron, and stationed in the center of the city. IOF deployed between civilians’ houses and arrested twenty civilians and took them to a detention center at “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of the city, and released them later. (PCHR keeps records of the names of the arrestees).
At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Abu Dis, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Jawhar Naser Jawhar, 25, and Mohammed Abdullah Jaffal, 17, and arrested them. IOF took them to an unknown destination.
At approximately 02:20, IOF moved into Tal village, southwest of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Hammam Ahmed al-Banna, 25.
At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Murad Mohammed Idris’s, 24, house and arrested him.
At approximately 06:30, IOF established a temporary military checkpoint on the entrance of Sebastia village, northwest of Nablus. They stopped and arrested Amjad Khaled Fayed, 19, and Tamer Ahmed al-Saffouri, 19, from Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin.
At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into Ras Atiya village, south of Qalqilia. They raided and searched Ibarhim Hazem ‘Arrar’s, 23, house and arrested him.
At approximately 15:00, IOF moved into Saouane neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Sheikh ‘Akrama Sa’eed Abdullah Sabri’s, 82, house, the Head of the High Islamic Supreme Council, and handed him a expandable decision signed by the Israeli minister of interior affairs , Aryeh Deri, that bans him from travelling for a month.
It should be noted that IOF arrested and interrogated Sheikh Sabri and banned him from entering the Aqsa Mosque several times, latest of which was on 10 March 2021, after announcing his intention to join a religious meeting in Bab al-Rahma in the al-Aqsa Mosque.
IOF carried out five incursions in Dura, Beit Ummar, Bani Na’im villages in Heborn; al-Mughayyir, northwest of Ramallah; and Sebastia, northwest of Nablus. No arrests were reported.
Friday, 26 March 2021:
At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Illar village, north of Tulkarem. They raided and searched Samer Mwafaq Abu Hafiza’s, 24, house and arrested him.
At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Hebron, and stationed at several neighborhoods in the city. They raided and searched several houses and arrested three civilians, including former minister and deputy. The arrestees are: Issa Khairy al-Ja’bari, 55, the Palestinian minister of local government, was arrested nine times and spent 10-years in the Israeli prisons, and he was arrested without searching his house; Hatem Rabah Qfaisha, 68, former Hamas Movement Deputy; and Mazen Jamal al-Natsha, 46, a leader at Hamas Movement in Hebron.
IOF carried out three incursions in Nuba and Halhul in Hebron; and Jalazone refugee camp, north of Ramallah. No arrests were reported.
Saturday, 27 March 2021:
At approximately 10:00, IOF moved into Illar, north of Tulkarem. They raided and searched Sameer Abdul Khaliq Abu Sa’da’s, 27, house, and arrested him.
At approximately 18:00, IOF stationed at Bab al-Hadid “Iron Gate”, one of the Aqsa Mosque’s gates in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, severely beaten and arrested Murad Mohammed al-Tarhouni, 21, and took him to one of the police center in the city.
At approximately 22:00, IOF arrested Ahmed Hassan Ghayatha, 28, while present near “Kfar Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem. IOF took him to one of the detention centers and released him after several hours. It should be noted that Ghayatha is a person with disability.
IOF carried out five incursions in Sa’ir, Beit Ummar, and al-Shuyukh villages in Hebron governorate; Ras Karkar, west of Ramallah; and Aboud, northwest of the city. No arrests were reported.
Sunday, 28 March 2021:
At approximately 15:00, IOF arrested Ahmed Mohammed Ghazzawi’s, 28, house, claiming that he attempted to run over an Israeli soldier near “Ma’ale Adumim” settlement, east of the occupied East Jerusalem. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
At approximately 18:00, IOF arrested a child Mohammed Murad Abu Hammad, 13, and Mohammed Fayez al-Debs, 20, from Aida refugee camp, north of Bethlehem, while present near Bilal Ibn Rabah Mosque, north of the city.
IOF carried out three incursions in Hebron, Bani Na’im, and Tarrama villages, in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.
Monday, 29 March 2021:
At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into al-Tur neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Riyad al-Qarrawi, 20, and Mahdi Abu al-Hawa, 20, and took them to unknown destinations.
At approximately 07:30, IOF reinforced with four military vehicles moved 50-100 meters to the west of the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah. They combed and leveled lands and deployed again at approximately 16:00.
At approximately 10:00, IOF stationed at the entrance of Salem court, west of Jenin, arrested a child, Mohammed Husain Bani Ghurra, 17, from Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin. IOF claimed that he attempted to smuggle a bombshell into the court.
At approximately 13:00, IOF arrested Muna Azmi al-Qawasmi, a journalist at Jerusalem Newspaper, and the former prisoner Sedqi Suliman al-Maqt, 54, after conducting an interview in the yards of the Aqsa Mosque. IOF took them to al-Kishle police center, where their mobile phones were confiscated, and they were interrogated for hours and accused of inciting riots. Later IOF released them on condition that banning his entry to the Aqsa Mosque for one week, subject to renewal. It should be noted that al-Maqt is from Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights, and he was released in January 2020, during a prisoner exchange deal, after he spent thirty-two years in Israeli prisons.
At approximately 15:00, the Israeli Intelligence Services handed the Jerusalem Affairs Minister, Adnan Adel Ghaith, 46, a new military decision that bans his entry to the West Bank for another six months for unjustified/false security reasons. Jerusalem governorate stated that this is the fifth decision in raw that bans the entry of Ghaith to the West Bank and to his workplace, north of Jerusalem. it should be noted that IOF arrested and interrogated Ghaith over than twenty-seven times since he was signed as a governor.
At approximately 19:30, IOF stationed at Container military checkpoint, east of Bethlehem, arrested Ramzi Naser Abu Ajamiyya, 20, from al-Dheisha refugee camp, south of the city, while passing through the checkpoint. IOF took him to an unknown destination.
IOF carried out two incursions in Aqabat Jabr refugee camp, southwest of Jericho; and Ti’inik village, west of Jenin. No arrests were reported.
Tuesday, 30 March 2021:
At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Jenin. They raided and searched Ahmed Huthaifa al-Jamal’s, 20, house and arrested him.
Around the same time, IOF moved into Ram village, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Emran Mousa Zawahra’s, 23, house and arrested him.
Around the same time, IOF moved into Yasuf, east of Salfit. They raided and searched Nour Jamal Azzam’s, 23, house and arrested him.
At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into the southern side of Hebron, and stationed in Kiton area. They raided and searched Mohammed Hamed Barqan’s, 36, house and arrested him.
At approximately 03:30, IOD moved into Ein Musbah neighborhood in Ramallah. They raided and searched Abdul Majid Majed Hasan’s, 22, house and arrested him. It should be noted that Hasan is a university student.
At approximately 04:00, IOF moved into Ni’lin village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mus’ab Mohammed Srour’s, 32, house and arrested him.
At approximately 10:00, IOF moved into Qarawat Bani Hassan village, west of Salfit. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Mo’nis Jamal Mer’i, 24, and Saher Ammar Mer’i, 26, and arrested them.
At approximately 18:00, IOF arrested Jom’a Khaled Abu Mfareh, 24, from Teqoa, east of Bethlehem, after summonsing him to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of the city.
IOF carried out six incursions in Tubas and Tammun, southeast of Tubas; Qalqilia, Jericho, Aqabat Jabr refugee camp, near Jericho; and Ras Karkar village, west of Ramallah. No arrests were reported.
Wednesday, 31 March 2021:
At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Tubas, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched Abdul Wahab Shadi Daraghmah’s, 19, house and arrested him.
At approximately 03:20, IOF moved into Jalazone refugee camp, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Ayman Rami Zeid’s, 19, house and arrested him.
At approximately 03:50, IOF moved into Deir Jarir village, northeast of Ramallah. They raided and searched Mu’in Abdul ‘Alim Olwi’s, 21, house and arrested him.
At approximately 07:00, IOF reinforced with 4 military vehicles moved 50-100 meters to the west of the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah. They combed and leveled lands and deployed again at approximately 16:00.
At approximately 08:00, IOF moved into Samu village, south of Hebron. They deployed in the Old City of Hebron, closed the main street of the city to provide protection to settlers to perform their religious rituals in an old Roman synagogue in the city center. The closure continued until at approximately 10:00.
At approximately 10:00, Israeli infantry unit moved into Bab al-Zawiya area in Hebron. Meanwhile, several military vehicles came and closed the road to Bir al-Hams, and forced the stores’ owners to close their stores, and prevented the Palestinian vehicles from moving to provide security for a group of settlers to perform their religious rituals in an old building called “Etni’il Tomb”, until at approximately 11:30. Meanwhile, a group of Palestinian activists attempted to obstruct the settlers’ way and reopened their stores and rose banners that calls for the eviction of settlers out of Hebron. IOF responded by attacking the Palestinians and arrested the activist Wael Mohammed Amro, 25, and took him to police center in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem.
At approximately 11:00, IOF arrested Emran al-Ashhab, 41, the employee at Islamic Waqf rehabilitation committee, while present in the Aqsa Mosque’s yards in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. IOF took him to al-Kishle police center, in the Old City.
IOF carried out two incursions in Beita village, southeast of Nablus; and Beit Ur al-Fauqa village, in Ramallah. No arrests were reported.
III. Settlement Expansion and settler violence in the West Bank
a. Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property
At approximately 13:00 on Monday, 29 March 2021, IOF backed by military vehicles and accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration vehicle moved into At-Tuwani village, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. They deployed around a house belonging to ‘Omer Mohammed Rab’ie while plowing the land around the house. The soldiers tried to confiscate an excavator that was working there while the villagers intervened and prevented them. Before leaving, the Israeli Civil Administration officer handed Rab’ie a notice to stop construction works in the area under the pretext of monument destruction.
At approximately 17:00 on Monday, 29 March 2021, IOF handed a citizen from Teqoa village, a notice to stop the construction of a retaining wall around his land, under the pretext of unlicensed construction. Director of Teqoa village, Taysir Abu Mefreh, said that IOF notified Sami ‘Ali Ibrahim al-Ta’amrah to stop the construction of a retaining wall around a plot of land he owns in Kherbet al-Deir, west of the village, under the pretext of unlicensed construction.
b. Settler attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property
At approximately 17:00 on Thursday, 25 March 2021, settlers beat up Ahmed Sa’id Sbeih, 39, when he was in his land in al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem, causing him bruises and wounds.
As’ad Sbeih said that his brother Ahmed was surprised with four Israeli settlers storming his land in ‘Ein Qasis area, west of al-Khader village. When he tried to ask them about their presence in his land, they started beating, pushing and kicking him. As a result, he sustained bruises and injuries all over his body and was referred to Beit Jala Governmental Hospital to receive treatment.
At approximately 16:30 on Sunday, 28 March 2021, a group of settlers from Brukhin village, established on west Salfit lands, attacked Rami Tahsin ‘Abdel Jawad (41), and damaged his family agricultural room in Wadi Sousia area, north of Kafr al-Deek village, west of Salfit.
Rami Tahsin ‘Abdel Jawad said to PCHR’s fieldworker that:
“I was working in the village lands when someone called me to say that there were settlers damaging the agricultural room in Wadi Sousia. I immediately stopped working and headed to the land. When I arrived, the settlers ran away to the top of the Mountain and started throwing stones at me and my car, breaking its windshield. I could not bear it and called the settlement’s guard. An Israeli officer arrived, and I told him that I will not leave until they fix what they ruined. The officer told me to calm down and I will get what I want. All they did is trying to calm me down, and nothing happened as the officer told me to go and file a complaint to Ariel police station. I refused and went back. It was all in vain although I took photos of the settlers and the settler who damaged my car.”
At approximately 11:30 on Monday, 29 March 2021, a group of settlers from Rafafa settlement established on west Salfit lands attacked an agricultural road and destroyed the stone chains established there in Kherbet al-Nafakh, turning it into a road for settlers’ motorbikes. The settlers also cut 15 olive trees in lands belonging to heirs of Yousif Hasan Souf; Hussein Hasan Jaber; ‘Aref Hussein Saleh Souf and ‘Aisha Mahmoud ‘Abdel Qader Qasem.
PCHR Weekly Report – Arabic version
واصلت قوات الاحتلال الحربي الإسرائيلي تنفيذ جرائمها وانتهاكاتها المركبة ضد المدنيين الفلسطينيين وممتلكاتهم، بما في ذلك…