The Gaza based Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) has issues a report on Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (19 – 25 January 2017). The list of violations includes the following:
· Israeli forces killed a Palestinian civilian in the north-eastern side of occupied Jerusalem.
– 2 Palestinian Civilians were wounded, including a child, in the West Bank.
· Israeli forces continued to target Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Sea.
– 3 fishermen, including a child, were wounded in two shootings against their Boats in the northern Gaza Strip
· Israeli forces continued to target the Gaza Strip border areas, but no casualties were reported.
– A watchtower belonging to Palestinian armed groups was damaged, east of al-Maghazi.
· Israeli forces conducted 63 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and a limited one into the Gaza Strip.
– 64 civilians, including 17 children and 7 activists in the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlements, were arrested in the West Bank.
– 17 of them, including 12 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem.
· Israeli forces continued their efforts to create Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.
– 22 commercial shops were demolished in the vicinity of Qalendia checkpoint, north of Jerusalem.
– A store, parking and store for construction materials were demolished.
– Israeli settlers took over a store in ‘Aqabet al-Khalidiyah neighbourhood in the Old City.
· Settlement activities continued in the West Bank.
– 4 dwellings and 10 other facilities were demolished in Kherbet Karzliyah, north of Jericho, rendering 11 persons homeless, including 6 children.
– Israeli settlers uprooted olive trees from the lands of Bitello village in Ramallah.
· Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 10th year.
– Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
– 8 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were arrested at military checkpoints.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian civilian in the north-eastern side of Jerusalem and wounded 5 others, including a child, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces continued to chase Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Sea and open fire at farmers in the border areas.
In the West Bank, in new crime of using excessive force, Israeli forces killed Hussein Abu Ghosh (24) from Qalendia refugee camp, north of Jerusalem, when they immediately opened fire at him. This happened after his car veered off to a bus station at the entrance to “Adam” settlement established on the lands of Jabe’a village, northeast of the City, and crushed the iron barriers established by Israeli forces in the stations for the soldiers and settlers.
On 21 January 2017, during a demonstration organized by Palestinians and international activists at the eastern entrance to Kafr Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqilya, Israeli forces opened fire at ‘Awad Sobhi (12) and wounded him to his right hand. The Israeli forces also arrested Ma’moun Shteiwi (40) and took him to an unknown destination. In the same context, Israeli forces arrested 5 civilians, including a woman, when the earlier moved into “Bab al-Shams” village, which was re-established by the coordinating committee against the wall and settlements in the area adjacent to “Ma’ale Adumim” settlement, east of Jerusalem.
On 25 January 2017, ‘Omer al-Barghuthi (26) from ‘Aboud village, northwest of Ramallah, was seriously wounded and then arrested. Israeli forces claimed that a speeding car opened fire at a number of Israeli soldiers near ‘Aboud village, so the soldiers opened fire back at him, causing him serious wounds.
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 3 fishermen, including a child. On 20 January 2017, ‘Abdel Rahim al-Sultan (25) was wounded when Israeli gunboats stationed west of al-Wahah area in the northern Gaza Strip heavily opened fire at the Palestinian fishermen. On 23 January 2017, Israeli gunboats opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats in the same area. As a result, Uranus al-Sultan (20) and his cousin ‘Oday (14) were wounded.
In the context of targeting Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Sea in addition to the abovementioned incidents, Israeli gunboats stationed off al-Wahah shore as well opened fire at the Palestinian fishing boats on 24 January 2017.
On the same day, Israeli gunboats stationed off Rafah shore and off Khan Younis shore opened fire at a group of fishing boats. The shooting recurred at the boats on 25 January 2017. However, neither casualties nor damages to the boats were reported.
In the context of targeting the border areas, on 24 January 2017, Israeli forces fired two artillery shells at a watchtower belonging to the Palestinian armed groups, east of al-Maghazi in the central Gaza Strip. As a result, the watchtower sustained material damages. On the same day, Israeli forces opened fire at the agricultural lands, east of Khan Younis.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 63 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 64 Palestinian civilians, including 17 children. Seventeen of them, including 12 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem. Seven of those arrested were activists in the Committees against the Wall and Settlements.
In the Gaza Strip, on 25 January 2017, Israeli forces moved into al-Shokah village, east of Rafah City in the southern Gaza Strip and levelled and combed in the area before redeploying along the border fence.
Efforts to create Jewish majority
In the context of house demolitions and notices, On Thursday early morning, 19 January 2017, Israeli forces carried out a large-scale demolition in the southern side of Qalendia refugee camp, north of occupied Jerusalem. They levelled 22 stores used as an automobile repair and spare parts shops, used cars showrooms and vegetable and fruit shops.
On 25 Janaury 2017, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a store, parking and fences belonging to Redwan Jamal ‘Amr in al-‘Abasiyah neighbourhood in Silwan village, south of Jerusalem’s Old City. Around the same time, Israeli bulldozers demolished a store for construction materials belonging to Nassar Family in Qaddoum Valley neighbourhood in Silwan village as well under the pretext of building without a license.
On 17 January 2017, Firas Mahmoud self-demolished his 130-square-meter house in al-‘Issawiyah village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem. It should be mentioned that the municipality issued a decision so Mahmoud self-demolishes his house and refused his attempt to obtain a license or postpone the demolition. If he did not do so, the municipality would demolish it and impose on him a demolition fee. Mahmoud started building his houses 8 months ago and intended to move and live in it in the coming days along with his 5-member family.
In the same context, on 24 January 2017, Israeli settlers took over a store belonging to the family of Noura Gheith in ‘Aqabet al-Khalidyah neighbourhood in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Settlement activities and Israeli settlers’ attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property:
On 23 January 2017, Israeli forces demolished four dwellings, barracks used as sheep shelters, 2 barns and 4 other attached facilities in Kherbet Karzaliyah in Central Jordan Valley, north of Jericho. That Property belongs to the family of Zuhair Qassem Bani Menia and Zahi Fahim Bani Meniah. The number of both families’ members is 11, including 6 children. The Israeli forces also levelled an agricultural road leading to the abovementioned area to deny the families’ access to the property.
In the same context, a group of Israeli settlers from “Tel Mond” and “Nhlial” settlemnts attacked a plot of agricultural land belonging to a Palestinian civilian from Bitello village, northwest of Ramallah and uprooted and broke 10 olive trees there.
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 9 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 2 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. The Israeli closure raised the rate of poverty to 65%. Moreover, the rate of unemployment increased up to 47% and youth constitutes 65% of the unemployed persons. Moreover, 80% of the Gaza Strip population depends on international aid to secure their minimum daily needs. These rates indicate the unprecedented economic deterioration in the Gaza Strip.
In the West Bank, Israeli forces continued to suffocate the Palestinian cities and village by imposing military checkpoints around and/or between them. This created “cantons” isolated from each other that hinders the movement of civilians. Moreover, the Palestinian civilians suffering aggravated because of the annexation wall and checkpoints erected on daily basis to catch Palestinians.
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