PCHR Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (08 – 21 August 2019)

August 25, 2019 9:57 PM PCHR Human rights, Israeli attacks, News Report, Palestine 0
25 Aug
9:57 PM

Israeli violations of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territory

8- 21 August 2019

  • 2 Palestinians killed, including a child, under the pretext of carrying out stab and run-over attacks in the West Bank.

 

  • Great March of Return in Eastern Gaza Strip: 85 civilians injured, including 25 children and 6 women.

 

  • West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem: 73 civilians injured, including a Korean activist.

 

  • 86 civilians, including 4 children and a woman, arrested during 189 incursions into the West Bank.

 

  • 2 houses demolished and 20 facilities notified of demolition in occupied East Jerusalem while 3 houses received notices to halt construction works in Bethlehem.

 

  • 6 shooting incidents reported against Palestinian fishing boats off Gaza shores.

                                                

  • 46 temporary checkpoints established in the West Bank, where 2 Palestinian civilians were arrested.

Summary

 

During the reporting period, PCHR documented 210 violations of the international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli forces and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory.

As part of the Israeli violations of the right to life and bodily integrity, Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinians, including a child, and seriously wounded another child in the West Bank under the pretext of 2 separate stab and run-over attacks.  On Thursday afternoon, 15 August 2019, the Israeli police officers stationed at Bab al-Silsila, Gate to al-Haram al-Sharief, in the old City of occupied East Jerusalem opened fire at 2 Palestinian children, who stabbed one of the officers.  As a result, one of them was killed while the other was seriously wounded. PCHR investigations confirm that Israeli police could have used less fatal force against the children, or arrest them as they were within their reach. On 16 August 2019, an Israeli police officer in plain clothes opened fire at ‘Alaa’ Khader al-Hreimi (27), claiming he attempted to run over 2 settlers at a bus stop on Bypass Road (60) in “Gosh ‘Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem.  As a result, al-Hreimi was shot with several bullets and immediately died.  However, nothing proves the Israeli claims, and it is still unknown if it was a deliberate run-over or just an accident.

Israeli forces injured 157 Palestinian civilians in addition to a Korean activist in the Gaza Strip and West Bank.  85 of them, including 25 children and 6 women, were injured at the Great March of Return while 72 others in the West Bank; 65 of them were injured after the Israeli forces’ raid of al-Aqsa Mosque yards in Jerusalem following Eid al-Adha Prayer,

Israel carried out 189 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, and raided civilian houses, attacking and enticing fear among residents. Moreover, 86 Palestinians were arrested, including 4 children and a woman.

Under the settlement expansion activities in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusaelm, PCHR documented 9 incidents where Israeli forces notified 3 houses of stopping construction works, west of Bethlehem in addition to dismantling a barrack and confiscating equipment in Hebron. Furthermore, 2 houses were demolished in Beit Hanina in occupied Jerusalem while 20 demolition and evacuation notices were distributed to commercial facilities in the vicinity of Qalendia refugee camp.  Meanwhile, Israeli settlers carried out 4 attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property in the West Bank.

During the reporting period, the Israeli naval forces continued their attacks against the Palestinian fishermen and their equipment at sea though sailing within the allowed fishing area.  This week witnessed 6 shooting and chasing incidents against the fishermen and their boats.

In terms of the Israeli closure policy, it should be highlighted that Israel continues its closure of the Gaza Strip for the 14th consecutive year, severely restricting the freedom of movement of persons and goods and isolating the Gaza Strip from the West Bank and the rest of the world. Meanwhile, the West Bank is divided into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation and with temporary and permanent checkpoints.  During this week, 46 temporary military checkpoints were erected, and 2 Palestinian civilians were arrested there.

 

  1. Violation of the right to life and to bodily integrity

 

  1. Excessive Use of Force against the Great March of Return in the Gaza Strip

 

At approximately 18:00 on Friday, 09 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis opened fire at a group of Palestinian young men, who protested in eastern Khuza’ah village. As a result, 2 children were hit with live bullets in the lower extremities. They were taken to Gaza European Hospital and their injuries classified as moderate.

The 70th Great March of Return took off in eastern Gaza Strip on Friday, 16 August 2019, titled “Palestinian Youth’s Friday.” The Israeli attacks resulted in 83 injuries among civilians, including 24 children, 6 women including a female paramedic.

The incidents were as follows:

 

  • Northern Gaza Strip: At approximately 16:30 on Friday, 16 August 2019, hundreds of civilians marched towards the central tent of the Great March of Return in Abu Safiyah area, northeast of Jabalia, north of the Gaza Strip. The protest involved activities such as national songs of the Palestinian heritage, speeches by political leaders in addition to raising the Palestinian flag At approximately 17:00, Israeli forces stationed behind sand berms and in military vehicles along the border fence, fired live and rubber bullets as well as teargas canisters at the protesters. As a result, 27 of them were injured, including 11 children and a woman: 16, including 7 children, were hit with live bullets and their shrapnel, 5, including 2 children and a woman, were hit with a rubber bullet; and 6 including 2 children, were hit with teargas canisters.
  • Gaza City: hundreds of civilians marched in eastern Malakah area, east of Gaza City. Speeches, theatrical performances and other segments were performed at the protest central encampment. Tens of young men approached the border with Israel and threw stones at soldiers using slingshots. Israeli forces fired live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, 6 civilians injured, including a child: 5 were hit with rubber bullets and 1 with a tear gas canister.
  • Central Gaza Strip:  at approximately 15:30, hundreds of civilians, including women, children and families, took part in the eastern Bureij refugee camp protests; hundreds, including women and children, gathered adjacent to the border fence at a range varying between 3 – 300 meters while tens approached the fence at a range varying between 2 – 70 meters. Some protestors attempted to throw stones at Israeli soldiers with slingshots. The Israeli soldiers, reinforced with 9 military SUVs, responded with live and rubber bullets in addition to teargas canisters at the protesters, wounding 10 civilians, including a child. Among those injured, 5 were shot with live bullets and shrapnel, one with rubber bullets and 4 directly hit with teargas canisters. ‘Arabi Maher ‘Abed al-Hameed Abu Hasnah (29) sustained serious wounds after being shot with a live bullet in his testicles.
  • Khan Younis:  Hundreds participated in in Khuza’a protests; hundreds gathered in the camp’s central tent where national songs and speeches by political leaders were performed. Dozens of protestors were present tens of meters away from the border fence. Israeli forces fired live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, 23 civilians injured, including 5 children and 3 women: 14 were hit with live bullets and their shrapnel and 9 were hit with rubber bullets and tear gas canisters.
  • Rafah: Hundreds participated in the eastern Shokah protests, where no activities were reported due to the power outage. Dozens approached the border fence and threw stones. The Israeli soldiers used live and rubber bullets and teargas canisters against the protestors. As a result, 17 civilians were injured, including 6 children and a volunteer paramedic: 6 were shot with live bullets, 4 shot with rubber bullets and 7 were directly hit with tear gas canisters. The volunteer paramedic Nour ‘Atah Mohamed Saleem (16) was hit with a rubber bullet in her abdomen and sustained minor wounds. Additionally, Basem Raied Barakat (24) was hit with a live bullet in his right thigh; his condition was deemed critical.
  1. Excessive Use of Force against Protests in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem
  • At approximately 13:30 on Friday afternoon, 16 August 2019, Palestinians from Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah launched their weekly peaceful protest and headed towards the village’s eastern entrance that has been closed by Israeli forces for the past 15 years in favor of “Kedumim” settlement. The demonstrators chanted national slogans demanding end of the occupation and protested the Israeli forces’ crimes against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The protestors threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed behind sand berms while the soldiers fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, a 20-year-old civilian was hit with a rubber bullet to the shoulder, a 23-year-old civilian was hit with a rubber bullet to the leg and a Korean activist (26) was hit with a rubber bullet to the head.

 

  1. Shooting and other violations of the right to life and bodily integrity
  • At approximately 03:00 on Friday 09 August 2019, Israeli forces moved into Halhoul, north of Hebron and stationed in al-Nabi Younis area. The soldiers patrolled between houses, causing fear among the residents. Meanwhile, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at Israeli soldiers, while the latter fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 3 of the stone-throwers were hit with rubber bullets to the lower extremities of their bodies and were transferred to a hospital in Hebron for treatment.
  • At approximately 17:30 on Monday, 12 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis, opened fire at agricultural lands in eastern al-Fukhari area. The shooting continued for half an hour; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 14:10 on Tuesday, 13 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis, opened fire at agricultural lands in eastern ‘Abasan al-Kabirah, al-Qararah and al-Fukhari areas. The shooting continued for an hour; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Tuesday, 13 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis, opened fire at Palestinian young men present in eastern Khuza’a protests. The shooting continued for few minutes; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 14:30 on Wednesday, 14 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis, opened fire at sewage vacuum truck adjacent to Khuza’a eastern camp; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Thursday, 15 August 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed northeast of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 2 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • On Tuesday evening, 15 August 2019, Israeli police officers stationed at Bab al-Silsila, Gate to Haram al-Shariefd, in the Old City in occupied East Jerusalem, opened fire at two Palestinian children. The children had carried out stab attacks against police officers, one of them was killed in the attack while the other was seriously wounded.

According to eyewitnesses’ statement, at approximately 18:10, when Nasim Mokafeh Abu Romi (14) and Hamoudah Khader al-Sheikh (16), from al-‘Izariyah village, east of occupied East Jerusalem, were leaving from Bab al-Silsila, they pulled out 2 knifes they had hidden under their clothes and stabbed Israeli police officers stationed at the gate. Al-Sheikh caused moderate wounds to a police officer in the upper part of his body. The Israeli police fired a barrage of live bullets at the children, killing Abu Romi and seriously wounding al-Sheikh. During the shooting, ‘Omran Samir al-Rajbi (36), al-Aqsa Mosque caretaker, was shot with a live bullet to the thigh and taken to al-Makassed Hospital in eastern Jerusalem for treatment.

The Israeli police said in its statement: “At approximately 06:00, 2 Palestinian minors stabbed a police officer at Bab al-Silsila in Jerusalem’s Old City. The police officer was wounded and then referred for medical treatment.” The police spokesperson said: “police officers present in the area immediately opened fire at the 2 suspects.  In addition, a person, who was near scene, was wounded in the leg and is being treated.” PCHR’s preliminary investigations confirm that the Israeli police officers could have used less lethal force or they could have arrested the children as the distance between them was short, so they were able to control them.

Soon after the shooting, the Israeli forces closed al-Aqsa Mosque Gates and prevented civilians from entering or leaving  it. Two hours later, the Israeli forces allowed the officers of the Islamic Endowments Department (Awqaf) to enter al-Aqsa Mosque and prevented worshipers under 50 years old from entering al-Aqsa Mosque.

In al-‘Izariyah and Abu Dese villages, east of occupied East Jerusalem, violent clashes erupted between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian youth, who threw Molotov Cocktails and fireworks at the military point in the village; set tires on fire and set barriers in several areas. The clashes continued for the next day despite a strike in both villages, during which Israeli forces fired rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at the young men, wounding a volunteer paramedic with a rubber bullet to the head. Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said in a statement that a volunteer paramedic was hit with a rubber bullet to the head while covering the clashes in Abu Dese village, east of Jerusalem. PRCS pointed that its crews offered first aid for the wounded paramedic and then transferred him to a Palestinian hospital for treatment.

  • At approximately 01:00 on Friday, 16 August 2019, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence in eastern Khan Younis area, fired flare bombs and opened fire in the border area; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 13:00 on Friday, 16 August 2019, an Israeli police officer wearing civilian clothes opened fire at ‘Ala’a Khader al-Haremi (27) claiming that he carried out a run-over attack against 2 settlers present on Street (60) in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem. As a result, ‘Ala’a was shot with many live bullets, causing his death. Zaki Heller, a spokesman for the Magen David Adom emergency service (MDA) said that a police officer in civilian clothing opened fire at a man driving a vehicle with an Israeli registration plate as the driver was speeding towards a 17-year-old settler and 19-year-old female civilian. Heller pointed out that the injuries of both settlers classified between  moderate and serious. It should be noted that al-Haremi, a former prisoner and have one child, served 3 years in the Israeli prisons. Nothing affirms the Israeli claims and if the run over incident was deliberate or accidental.
  • At approximately 00:20 on Saturday, 17 August 2019, an Israeli warplane launched 4 missiles at an open land in eastern Deir al-Balah area. The bombardment caused severe damage to the land; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 09:00 on the same day, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence, east of al-Shoka village, east of Rafah, opened fire at agricultural lands; no arrests or injuries were reported.
  • At the same time on the same day, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 2 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives. Neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 18:00 on the same day, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, sporadically opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. The shooting continued until 19:20 on the same day. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 07:20 on Sunday, 18 August 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed west of al-Sudaniyah shore, west of Jabalia in northern Gaza Strip, chased and heavily opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. They also fired a number of artillery shells in the vicinity of the boats. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 07:30 on Tuesday, 20 August 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 2 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 08:40, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence in eastern al-Shokah village, east of Rafah, opened fire at agricultural lands; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 22:00, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire, fired flare bombs and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 2 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.

More at the official website for the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR).

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