March 11-17 2010 Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

Salem-News.com

Israeli violations of international law and humanitarian law escalated in the OPT during the reporting period (11 – 17 March 2010).

(HEBRON) – The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights reports the latest military action by Israel’s military toward Palestinian civilians. A number of shootings are reported.

They say that during the reporting period, 31 Palestinian civilians, including 4 children and 5 women, were wounded when IOF used excessive force against peaceful demonstrations organized in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall and settlement activities in the West Bank.

In the same time frame, IOF (Israeli Occupational Forces) issued a military order declaring the area of the Annexation Wall in Bal’ein and Ne’lin villages, west of Ramallah, a closed military zone on Fridays, banning access of Palestinian civilians to the area. According to the order, such ban will remain effective until 17 August 2010.

In the Gaza Strip, IOF fired at Palestinian workers and fishing boats. They also fire at a peaceful protest against the security zone IOF plan to establish along the border.

On 12 March 2010, Israeli warplanes bombarded and destroyed a factory of plastics in Khan Yunis.

Incursions: During the reporting period, IOF conducted at least 13 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. IOF arrested 27 Palestinian civilians, including two children and a journalist.

In the Gaza Strip, on 12 March 2010, IOF moved into the east of Jabalya town in the northern Gaza Strip. They leveled areas of land which they had already razed.

Restrictions on Movement: IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the OPT and imposed severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

Gaza Strip

IOF have continued to close all border crossings to the Gaza Strip for more than two years. The Israeli siege of Gaza, which has steadily tightened since June 2007, has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.

  • On Friday, 01 January 2010, IOF decided to close the crossing permanently, and to allow the entry of fuels through Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, southeast of Rafah, for security claims.
  • 1.5 million people are being denied their basic rights, including freedom of movement, and their rights to appropriate living conditions, work, health and education.
  • The main concern of the population of the Gaza Strip is to obtain their basic needs of food, medicines, water and electricity supplies.
  • IOF have continued to prevent the entry of raw construction materials into the Gaza Strip for more than two years.
  • IOF have not allowed fuel supplies into the Gaza Strip, excluding few amounts of cooking gas and energy fuel for Gaza Power Plant, since 10 December 2008.
  • The Rafah International Crossing Point has been opened for a few days for a number of patients who received medical treatment abroad and needed to return home to the Gaza Strip.
  • IOF have continued to close Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the face of Palestinian civilians wishing to travel to the West Bank and Israeli for medical treatment, trade or social visits.
  • IOF have imposed additional restrictions on access of international diplomats, journalists and humanitarian workers to the Gaza Strip. They have prevented representatives of several international humanitarian organizations from entering the Gaza Strip.
  • Living conditions of the Palestinian civilian population have seriously deteriorated; levels of poverty and unemployment have sharply mounted.
  • · At least 800 Gazan prisoners in Israeli jails have been deprived for family visitation for more than two years.
  • IOF have continued to attack Palestinian fishermen along the Gaza Strip coast.

West Bank

IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians throughout the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Thousands of Palestinian civilians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip continue to be denied access to Jerusalem.

  • IOF have established checkpoints in and around Jerusalem, severely restricting Palestinian access to the city. Civilians are frequently prevented from praying at the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
  • There are approximately permanent 630 roadblocks, manned and unmanned checkpoints across the West Bank. In addition, there are some 60-80 ‘flying’ or temporary checkpoints erected across the West Bank by IOF every week.
  • When complete, the illegal Annexation Wall will stretch for 724 kilometers around the West Bank, further isolating the entire population. 350 kilometers of the Wall has already been constructed. Approximately 99% of the Wall has been constructed inside the West Bank itself, further confiscating Palestinian land.
  • At least 65% of the main roads that leads to 18 Palestinian communities in the West Bank are closed or fully controlled by IOF (47 out of 72 roads).
  • There are around 500 kilometers of restricted roads across the West Bank. In addition, approximately one third of the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, is inaccessible to Palestinians without a permit issued by the IOF. These permits are extremely difficult to obtain.
  • IOF continue to harass, and assault demonstrators who hold peaceful protests against the construction of the Annexation Wall.
  • Palestinian civilians continue to be harassed by IOF in Jerusalem, and across the West Bank, including being regularly stopped and searched in the streets by IOF.

Efforts to Create a Jewish Majority in Jerusalem: On Thursday, 11 March 2010, IOF started imposing increased restrictions on the movement of Palestinians in the old city. According to eyewitnesses, hundreds of Border Police officers established military checkpoints at the entrances of the old city, on all of the streets inside the walls of the old city, as well as on streets in the immediate vicinity. They prevented all those who were not residents of the old city from entering it. In addition, Palestinians under 50 years of age were not permitted to enter al-Aqsa Mosque, all gates to the al-Aqsa compound, with the exception of al-Majles, Hattah and al-Selselah gates, were closed. On Saturday, 13 March 2010, IOF closed al-Aqsa Secondary School for Girls, the Shari’a Secondary School and the Islamic Kindergarten of al-Aqsa, all of which are located inside al-Aqsa compound. These measures, which are still ongoing, came on the eve of the inauguration of a synagogue in al-Shorfah neighborhood. The synagogue is located 300 meters to the west of al-Aqsa Mosque and was inaugurated yesterday, on Monday, 15 March 2010.

Settlement Activities: IOF have continued settlement activities and Israeli settlers living in the OPT in violation of international humanitarian law have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.

On Thursday morning, 11 March, the Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem set out plans to build thousands of housing units in Jerusalem, especially in the east and south of the city. The plans are supported by the Israeli government. The distribution of the new unit is like this: 3,000 units in “Gilo” settlement; 1,500 one in “Har Homa” settlement; 1,500 ones in “Pisgat Ze’ev” settlement; 3,000 one in “Giv’at Matosim” settlement; 1,200 ones in “Ramot” settlement; 600 ones in “Armona Netseev” settlement; 450 in “Neve Yacov” settlement; and 144 ones in “Olive Mount” settlement. A new settlement neighborhood of 13,000 housing unit will also be established near al-Walaja village, northwest of Bethlehem.

On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, dozens of Israeli settlers from “Elli” settlement attacked Battisha area in the northwest of Qaryout village, southeast of Nablus. They uprooted 40 olive trees.

Israeli Violations Documented during the Reporting Period (11 – 17 March 2010)

1. Incursions into Palestinian Areas and Attacks on Palestinian Civilians and Property in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip

Thursday, 11 March 2010

· At approximately 23:45, Israeli war planes dropped a bomb on al-Shouka village near the Egyptian border, southeast of Rafah, allegedly to destroy tunnels. No casualties or damage were reported.

Friday, 12 March 2010

  • At approximately 00:30, IOF moved into Ramallah. A number of Palestinian boys gathered and threw stones at Israeli military vehicles. Immediately, Israeli troops fired at the boys. They withdrew from the town later, and no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Jenin town and refugee camp. They raided and searched a number of houses, but no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 09:40, IOF moved nearly 200 meters into the east of Jabalya town in the northern Gaza Strip. They leveled areas of land, which they had already razed. At approximately 11:10, IOF moved south towards the east of al-Tuffah neighborhood in the east of Gaza City. IOF redeployed outside these areas in the evening. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 11:20, Israeli troops stationed on observation towers at Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at a number of Palestinian workers who were collecting bricks and iron bars from the debris of destroyed buildings. The workers fled and no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 22:10, Israeli gunboats stationed opposite to Beit Lahia beach in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats. Palestinian fishermen were forced to sail back to the beach, and no casualties or damage were reported.
  • At approximately 23:30, Israeli warplanes dropped two bombs on a factory of plastics in al-Satar al-Gharbi area in Khan Yunis. The 1,600-square-meter factor, which belongs to Msallam Mohammed al-Haddad, was destroyed almost completely. A nearby factory was also damaged.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into al-Duhaisha refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to the family of Hamed Mohammed Hammad, 35, and arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into al-Shurfa neighborhood in al-Bireh. They raided and searched a house belonging to Maher ‘Abdullah Jom’a, and arrested his wife, Amani Jom’a, 37.

Monday, 15 March 2010

· At approximately 00:00, IOF moved into Sourif village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses and arrested 7 Palestinian civilians:

  1. Ahmed Jamal Abu Fara, 18;
  2. Adham Hamdi Abu Fara, 18;
  3. Ahmed Shaker al-Heeh, 19;
  4. Bahaa’ Mazen Ehmaidat, 18;
  5. Mahmoud Mousa al-Masri, 18;
  6. ‘Alaa’ Ibrahim Barath’iya, 18; and
  7. Mahmoud Mousa Ehmaidat, 18.
  • At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Kharbtha Bani Hareth village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched a number of houses and summoned Mohammed Bilal al-Sheikh, 21, and Khaled Nemer al-‘Abed, 26.
  • At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Salem village, east of Nablus. They besieged a 5-storey apartment building, in which 5 families counting 30 people live. They ordered resident of the building to get out. Israeli troops verified their identity cards and held them in one room on the third floor, excluding Ibrahim Jameel Eshtayeh, 26, who was held on the second floor. Soon after, Israeli troops searched the building using dogs. At approximately 03:30, Israeli troop withdrew from the area detaining Eshtayeh.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

· At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Beit Reema village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched a number of houses and arrested 3 Palestinian civilians:

  1. Ghassan ‘Abbas al-Reemawi, 19;
  2. Saddam Tayseer al-Asmar, 19; and
  3. ‘Orabi Hussein al-Reemawi, 35.

· At approximately 11:00, the Israeli police stormed the African quarter in the old town of Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses and fired tear gas canisters in alleys. A number of old people suffered from tear gas inhalation. The Israeli police arrested 5 Palestinian civilians, including a child and a journalist:

  1. Haitham Jadda;
  2. Tha’er Seder;
  3. Shadi Seder;
  4. ‘Abdul Qader al-Qadhi; and
  5. Mousa Qous, a journalist.
  • · At approximately 12:05, Israeli troops stationed at the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northwest of Beit Lahia town fired into the air to force Palestinian demonstrators who organized a peaceful protest over an Israeli decision to create a 300-meter-wide buffer zone along the border. No casualties were reported.
  • · At approximately 20:30, IOF moved into Madama village, southeast of Nablus. They patrolled in the streets and detonated 3 sound bombs. They also arrested 3 Palestinian civilians in the streets:
  1. Ahmed Jebril Ziada, 25;
  2. Ahmed ‘Abdul Ghani Ziada, 19; and
  3. Wissam Rezeq Ziada, 19.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

· At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses and arrested 3 Palestinian civilians:

  1. Ameer Ibrahim Sabarna, 20;
  2. Ibrahim Sa’id ‘Awadh, 17; and
  3. Eyad ‘Omar Sabarna, 20.
  • At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Housan village, west of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to the family of Shadi Mohammed Za’oul, 17, and arrested him.
  • At noon, Israeli troops chased a number of Palestinian children into Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, claiming that they threw stones at a checkpoint established at the entrance of the village. Israeli troop fired rubber-coated metal bullet at the children. As a result, Khaled Ahmed al-‘Allami, 14, was wounded in the head.
    1. Mohammed Ahmed Hamad, 18, wounded in the right leg; and
    2. Mohammed Adeeb Abu Rahma, 15, wounded in the back.
    1. ‘Omar Salah Tamimi, 25, wounded in the back;
    2. Shadi ‘Ali Tamimi, 29, wounded in the head;
    3. Majd Daifallah Tamimi, 16, wounded in the back;
    4. Shokri Mahmoud Tamimi, 29, wounded in the left leg;
    5. Ziad ‘Abdul Raziq Tamimi, wounded in the left leg;
    6. Rami Hussein Tamimi, 28, wounded in the back;
    7. Nasser Hassan Tamimi, 27, wounded in the left leg;
    8. Ref’at Wajeeh Tamimi, 23, wounded in the back;
    9. Mohammed Jalal Tamimi, 25, wounded in the right hand;
    10. Ra’fat Wajeeh Tamimi, 24, wounded in the back;
    11. Ra’fat Tal’at Tamimi, 22, wounded in the right hand;
    12. ‘Aatef Mohammed Tamimi, 22, wounded in the back;
    13. Mo’taz Jalal Tamimi, 16, wounded in the left leg;
    14. Ahmed Mohammed Reemawi, 23, wounded in the back;
    15. ‘Abdul Hakim Mohammed Tamimi, 24, wounded in the right leg;
    16. Murad Saif Tamimi, 23, wounded in the back;
    17. Bahaa’ Jalal Tamimi, 23, wounded in the right leg; and
    18. Amjad ‘Abdul Hafiz Tamimi, 23, wounded in the left leg.
    1. An’am Mahmoud Khader, 55, hit by a sound bomb to the right leg;
    2. Majeda Mohammed ‘Alawna, 43, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet to the left leg;
    3. Nada ‘Ersan Twair, 48, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet to the left hand;
    4. Sa’eda al-Haj ‘Ali, 55, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet to the back; and
    5. Alaa’ Ibrahim al-Khatib, 17, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet to the right leg.
    1. Ahmed Fawzi Yousef, 22, wounded by shrapnel from a gunshot to the abdomen;
    2. Mlabbas Hassan ‘Abdullah, 20, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet to the jaw; and
    3. Basheer Yousef Mahmoud, 21, wounded by shrapnel from a gunshot to the right thigh.
    • During the reporting period, IOF issued a military order declaring the area of the Annexation Wall in Bal’ein and Ne’lin villages, west of Ramallah, a closed military zone on Fridays, banning access of Palestinian civilians to the area. According to the order, such ban will remain effective until 17 August 2010.
    • Following the Friday Prayer on 12 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall in Bal’ein village, west of Ramallah. The demonstrators moved towards the Wall and attempted to cross it towards annexed lands. Immediately, Israeli troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators. Two Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded by rubber-coated metal bullets:
    • Also on Friday noon, 12 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Ne’lin village, west of Ramallah, in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall. They clashed with IOF troops positioned near the Wall. IOF troops fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at demonstrators. Dozens of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation, and other sustained bruises. Israeli troops also arrested Salah Mustafa ‘Amira, 37, a farmer, and Sarita Haim, an Israeli human rights defender.
    • Also following the Friday Prayer on 12 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in protest to land confiscation in Wad al-Raya area between Nabi Saleh and Deir Nizam villages, northwest of Ramallah. When the demonstrators attempted to reach areas of land seized by Israeli settlers near “Halmish” settlement, Israeli troop fired rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 18 Palestinian civilians, including two children, were wounded by rubber-coated metal bullets:
    • Also on Friday noon, 12 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and international human rights defenders and peace activists organized a peaceful demonstration in the center of al-Ma’sara village, south of Bethlehem. They moved towards the Annexation Walla in the north and west of the village. Immediately, Israeli troops fired sound bombs and beat a number of demonstrators. As a result, ‘Ali ‘Alaa’ al-Din, 25, and Mahmoud Mousa, 26, sustained bruises.
    • On Saturday morning, 13 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and about 30 international and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration in Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall and settlement activities. The demonstrators moved from the east of the village towards bypass road #60. Israeli troops stationed in the area fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters and chased the demonstrators. They beat a number of civilians, including two journalists while photographing the demonstration: Yusri Mahmoud al-Jamal, 35, a cameraman of Reuters; and Yousef ‘Eissa Shaheen, 22, a cameraman of Palmedia Group. They also arrested two Israeli human rights defenders, two journalists (Nasser Hussin Shyoukhi, 45, and Fadi Eyad Hamad, 25, cameramen of Associated Press), and Yousef ‘Abdul Hamid Abu Maria, 37. They released all detainees, excluding the latter, a few hours later. Additionally, dozens of civilians suffered from tear gas inhalation.
    • Also on Saturday, 13 March 2010, dozens of Palestinian civilians and women’s rights activists organized a peaceful demonstration in celebration of International Women’s Day, near Qalandya checkpoint, south of Ramallah. Israeli troops closed the checkpoint. When the demonstrators attempted to cross the checkpoint towards Jerusalem, Israeli troops prevented them. In response, the demonstrators threw stones at Israeli troops. Immediately, Israeli troops fired at the demonstrators. As a result, 5 women were wounded:
    • On Friday, 01 January 2010, IOF decided to close the crossing permanently, and to allow the entry of fuels through Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, southeast of Rafah, for security claims.
    • 1.5 million people are being denied their basic rights, including freedom of movement, and their rights to appropriate living conditions, work, health and education.
    • The main concern of the population of the Gaza Strip is to obtain their basic needs of food, medicines, water and electricity supplies.
    • · IOF have continued to prevent the entry of raw construction materials into the Gaza Strip for more than two years.
    • IOF have not allowed fuel supplies into the Gaza Strip, excluding few amounts of cooking gas and energy fuel for Gaza Power Plant, since 10 December 2008.
    • The Rafah International Crossing Point has been opened for a few days for a number of patients who received medical treatment abroad and needed to return home to the Gaza Strip.
    • IOF have continued to close Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the face of Palestinian civilians wishing to travel to the West Bank and Israeli for medical treatment, trade or social visits.
    • IOF have imposed additional restrictions on access of international diplomats, journalists and humanitarian workers to the Gaza Strip. They have prevented representatives of several international humanitarian organizations from entering the Gaza Strip.
    • Living conditions of the Palestinian civilian population have seriously deteriorated; levels of poverty and unemployment have sharply mounted.
    • At least 800 Gazan prisoners in Israeli jails have been deprived for family visitation for more than two years.
    • IOF have continued to attack Palestinian fishermen along the Gaza Strip coast.
    • Ramallah: IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of the Palestinian civilians in Ramallah. IOF troops positioned at Jaba’-Qalandya checkpoint, southeast of Ramallah, have imposed additional restrictions on movement and conducted prolonged checking on Palestinian civilians. During the reporting period, IOF erected a number of temporary checkpoints, and stopped and searched Palestinian civilian vehicles. At approximately 11:30 on Saturday, 13 March 2010, IOF established a checkpoint near ‘Attara village, north of Ramallah. They stopped and searched Palestinian civilian vehicles.
    • Nablus: IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. On Friday morning, 05 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at Za’tara checkpoint, south of Nablus, imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians.
    • Hebron: IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. On Wednesday noon, 17 March 2010, IOF closed all entrance and roads leading to Hebron. They also established checkpoints on roads leading to neighboring villages and refugee camps. They stopped and searched Palestinian civilian vehicles. They also closed a branch road leading to the market in the northeast of Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, with cement blocks.
    • On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed in the vicinity of the Ibrahimi Mosque and the old town in Hebron arrested ‘Aliaa’ ‘Abdul Majid al-Natsha, 30, claiming that she was carrying a knife.
    • At approximately 16:00 on the same day, Israeli troops patrolling near the Annexation Wall near “Maccavim” settlement to the west of Beit Sierra village, west of Ramallah, arrested Jaber Sameer al-Khattab, 17, while he was grazing animals. They claimed that he broke a gate on the Wall. He was released on bail at night.
    • On Monday evening, 15 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at the Container checkpoint, northeast of Bethlehem, arrested ‘Omar ‘Alaa’ al-Din, 25, from al-Ma’sara village south of Bethlehem.
    • On Thursday morning, 11 March, the Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem set out plans to build thousands of housing units in Jerusalem, especially in the east and south of the city. The plans are supported by the Israeli government. The distribution of the new unit is like this: 3,000 units in “Gilo” settlement; 1,500 one in “Har Homa” settlement; 1,500 ones in “Pisgat Ze’ev” settlement; 3,000 one in “Giv’at Matosim” settlement; 1,200 ones in “Ramot” settlement; 600 ones in “Armona Netseev” settlement; 450 in “Neve Yacov” settlement; and 144 ones in “Olive Mount” settlement. A new settlement neighborhood of 13,000 housing unit will also be established near al-Walaja village, northwest of Bethlehem.
    • On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, dozens of Israeli settlers from “Elli” settlement attacked Battisha area in the northwest of Qaryout village, southeast of Nablus. They uprooted 40 olive trees belonging to Mohammed Jaber Mahmoud, Yasser Hassan Mansour, ‘Abdullah Dib and Yousef Raja.
    • On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed in the vicinity of the Ibrahimi Mosque and the old town in Hebron arrested ‘Aliaa’ ‘Abdul Majid al-Natsha, 30, claiming that she was carrying a knife.
    • At approximately 16:00 on the same day, Israeli troops patrolling near the Annexation Wall near “Maccavim” settlement to the west of Beit Sierra village, west of Ramallah, arrested Jaber Sameer al-Khattab, 17, while he was grazing animals. They claimed that he broke a gate on the Wall. He was released on bail at night.
    • On Monday evening, 15 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at the Container checkpoint, northeast of Bethlehem, arrested ‘Omar ‘Alaa’ al-Din, 25, from al-Ma’sara village south of Bethlehem.
    • On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed in the vicinity of the Ibrahimi Mosque and the old town in Hebron arrested ‘Aliaa’ ‘Abdul Majid al-Natsha, 30, claiming that she was carrying a knife.
    • At approximately 16:00 on the same day, Israeli troops patrolling near the Annexation Wall near “Maccavim” settlement to the west of Beit Sierra village, west of Ramallah, arrested Jaber Sameer al-Khattab, 17, while he was grazing animals. They claimed that he broke a gate on the Wall. He was released on bail at night.
    • On Monday evening, 15 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at the Container checkpoint, northeast of Bethlehem, arrested ‘Omar ‘Alaa’ al-Din, 25, from al-Ma’sara village south of Bethlehem.
  • 2. Use of Excessive Force against Peaceful Demonstrations

    IOF have continued to construct the Annexation Wall and inside West Bank territory. During the reporting period, IOF used force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders in protest to the construction of the Wall and settlement activities. At least 20 Palestinian civilians, including two children, were wounded, and other sustained bruises or suffered from tear gas inhalation.

    Additionally, dozens of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation, and some of them sustained bruises.

    Dozens of demonstrators also suffered from tear gas inhalation, and other sustained bruises.

    At approximately 13:00 on Monday, 15 March 2010, dozens of students of Bir Zeit University, north of Ramallah, organized a peaceful demonstration in protest to Israeli measures in Jerusalem. They moved towards ‘Attara checkpoint at the entrance of Bir Zeit village, and threw stones at Israeli troops in the area. Immediately, Israeli troops fired at the students. As a result, 3 students were wounded:

    3. Continued Siege on the OPT

    IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the OPT and imposed severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including Occupied East Jerusalem.

    Gaza Strip

    IOF have continued to close all border crossings to the Gaza Strip for more than two years. The Israeli siege of Gaza, which has steadily tightened since June 2007, has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.

    Movement at Border Crossings during the Reporting Period:

    Movement at Beit Hanoun Crossing

    10 – 16 March 2010

    Click on screen shots to enlarge

    Movement at Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) Crossing 10 – 16 March 2010









    Al-Mentar (Karni) Crossing: IOF partially opened the crossing on Wednesday, 10 March 2010, and allowed the entry of 1,287 tons of wheat and 1,326 tons of fodders. They opened it again on Tuesday, 16 March 2010, and allowed the entry of 546 tons of wheat and 351 tons of fodders.

    Beit Hanoun (Erez) Crossing: IOF have continued to close Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing for the movement of Palestinian civilians. They have allowed only diplomats, a number of international journalists, workers at international agencies and a few patients who suffer from serious diseases to pass through the crossing. They have continued to prevent Palestinian civilians from visiting their relatives who are detained in Israeli jails. As mentioned above, IOF have allowed a few number of patients to pass through the crossing, but under severe restrictions that include prolonged checking.

    Movement at Beit Hanoun (Erez) Crossing
    10 – 16 March 2010


    The West Bank

    IOF have imposed a tightened siege on the West Bank. During the reporting period, IOF imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians.

    Jerusalem: IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians to and from the city. Thousands of Palestinian civilians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip have been denied access to the city. IOF have established many checkpoints around and inside the city. Restrictions of the movement of Palestinian civilians often escalate on Fridays to prevent them from praying at the al-Aqsa Mosque. On Thursday, 11 March 2010, IOF started imposing increased restrictions on the movement of Palestinians in the old city. According to eyewitnesses, hundreds of Border Police officers established military checkpoints at the entrances of the old city, on all of the streets inside the walls of the old city, as well as on streets in the immediate vicinity. They prevented all those who were not residents of the old city from entering it. In addition, Palestinians under 50 years of age were not permitted to enter al-Aqsa Mosque, all gates to the al-Aqsa compound, with the exception of al-Majles, Hattah and al-Selselah gates, were closed. On Saturday, 13 March 2010, IOF closed al-Aqsa Secondary School for Girls, the Shari’a Secondary School and the Islamic Kindergarten of al-Aqsa, all of which are located inside al-Aqsa compound.

    Arrests at Military Checkpoints

    On Friday morning, 12 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed in the vicinity of the Ibrahimi Mosque and the old town in Hebron arrested ‘Aliaa’ ‘Abdul Majid al-Natsha, 30, claiming that she was carrying a knife.
    At approximately 16:00 on the same day, Israeli troops patrolling near the Annexation Wall near “Maccavim” settlement to the west of Beit Sierra village, west of Ramallah, arrested Jaber Sameer al-Khattab, 17, while he was grazing animals. They claimed that he broke a gate on the Wall. He was released on bail at night.
    On Monday evening, 15 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at the Container checkpoint, northeast of Bethlehem, arrested ‘Omar ‘Alaa’ al-Din, 25, from al-Ma’sara village south of Bethlehem.

    Harassment at Military CheckpointsAt approximately 15:30 on Friday, 12 March 2010, Israeli troops stationed at a gate on the Annexation Wall stopped 4 Palestinian farmers from “Deir al-Ghossoun” village, north of Tulkarm, while they were on their way back homes. They forced the farmers at gunpoint to take their clothes off. The farmers are: Mohammed Nihad ‘Atwa, 23; Saleh Radi Daqqa, 28; Zaher Safwat ‘Ouda, 28; and Wa’el Subhi Khalil, 25.

    4. Settlement Activities and Attacks by Settlers against Palestinian Civilians and Property

    IOF have continued settlement activities in the OPT in violation of international humanitarian law, and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.

    …………………………………………………………

    Recommendations to the International Community

    1. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their legal and moral obligations under Article 1 of the Convention to ensure Israel’s respect for the Convention in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. PCHR believes that the conspiracy of silence practiced by the international community has encouraged Israel to act as if it is above the law and encourages Israel continue to violate international human rights and humanitarian law.

    2. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to convene a conference to take effective steps to ensure Israel’s respect of the Convention in the OPT and to provide immediate protection for Palestinian civilians.

    3. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to comply with its legal obligations detailed in Article 146 of the Convention to search for and prosecute those responsible for grave breaches, namely war crimes.

    4. PCHR calls for the immediately implementation of the Advisory Opinion issued by the International Court of Justice, which considers the construction of the Annexation Wall inside the West Bank illegal.

    5. PCHR recommends international civil society organizations, including human rights organizations, bar associations and NGOs to participate in the process of exposing those accused of grave breaches of international law and to urge their governments to bring these people to justice.

    6. PCHR calls upon the European Union to activate Article 2 of the Euro-Israel Association Agreement, which provides that Israel must respect human rights as a precondition for economic cooperation between the EU states and Israel. PCHR further calls upon the EU states to prohibit import of goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements in the OPT.

    7. PCHR calls on the international community to recognize the Gaza disengagement plan, which was implemented in September 2005, for what it is – not an end to occupation but a compounding of the occupation and the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

    8. In recognition of ICRC as the guardian of the Fourth Geneva Convention, PCHR calls upon the ICRC to increase its staff and activities in the OPT, including the facilitation of family visitations to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

    9. PCHR appreciates the efforts of international civil society, including human rights organizations, bar associations, unions and NGOs, and urges them to continue their role in pressuring their governments to secure Israel’s respect for human rights in the OPT and to end its attacks on Palestinian civilians.

    10. PCHR calls upon the international community to pressure Israel to lift the severe restrictions imposed by the Israeli government and its occupation forces on access for international organizations to the OPT.

    11. PCHR reiterates that any political settlement not based on international human rights law and humanitarian law cannot lead to a peaceful and just solution of the Palestinian question. Rather, such an arrangement can only lead to further suffering and instability in the region. Any peace agreement or process must be based on respect for international law, including international human rights and humanitarian law.

    _____________________________________________________

    Source: PCHR’s office in Gaza City

    A typical week in OPT. Is it any wonder Palestinian’s get angry.

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Published in: on March 20, 2010 at 3:23 am  Comments Off on March 11-17 2010 Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory  
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