BETHELEHM (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority filed a report on settler violence with the International Criminal Court on Monday, following an arson attack in the West Bank last week that killed an 18-month-old Palestinian toddler.Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told Ma’an that the file was handed over to the ICC’s chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda during a meeting at the international court’s headquarters in the Hague.According to the PA’s official news agency, Wafa, the meeting discussed a preliminary probe the ICC is conducting on possible war crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories.The probe, which was opened on January, is not a full investigation but an examination of available information to decide whether there is a “reasonable basis” to proceed with an investigation.Maliki told Ma’an that he discussed many important issues relating to the Palestinian cause and recent Israeli violations against Palestinians, adding that it was one of the “best” meetings he had held with Bensouda.According to Wafa, the foreign minister stressed that “the continuation of the Israeli occupation and its policies, including its settlement expansion policy, along with the impunity it grants to settlers,” is encouraging violent attacks such as last week’s arson attack.The 18-month-old toddler, Ali Saad Dawabsha, was killed in a firebombing carried out by Israeli settlers in the West Bank village of Duma south of Nablus on Friday.Israeli settlers reportedly smashed the windows of two homes in the village before throwing flammable liquids and Molotov cocktails inside, killing the toddler who was trapped inside one of the homes and critically injuring his parents and four-year-old brother.The crime has sparked international outrage, although many Palestinians have pointed out that settler attacks against the Palestinian community are common and often go unpunished by the Israeli authorities.Israeli settlers have carried out at least 120 attacks on Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank since the start of this year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.Only 1.9 percent of complaints submitted by Palestinians against Israeli settler attacks result in a conviction, the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din reported.The ICC, set up in 2002, is the world’s only permanent independent body to try the most serious crimes of concern to the international community.
Israeli settlers on Monday everning have torched tens of olive trees in private Palestinian land in Azzoon town east of Qalilya, northern West Bank.
Security sources said that civil defense forces headed to the land, and put off the fire which had already damaged a number of trees.
Settlers by then have fled the scene.
Israeli settler attacks on trees have been on the increase now, especially with the support of Israeli soldiers and police which destroy trees under security pretexts.
On Sunday morning, a horde of Israeli settlers set fire to dozens of Palestinian olive orchards and cultivated lands in al-Mugheir village, east of Ramallah city, moments after they failed to torch a Palestinian family home.
According to the Palestinian Information Center, eyewitnesses said a gang of Israeli vandals residing in an illegal nearby settlement tried to burn down a Palestinian family home before they were stopped by the local residents.
The Israeli occupation forces showed up at the scene and attacked the Palestinian locals with random spates of tear gas canisters and rubber bullets.
On 22 July, IOF have uprooted a number of trees, destroying an agricultural land in Beit Oula village near Hebron, under security pretext.
The land and trees are property of citizen Faried Atrash. Israeli forces have previously told him to uproot the trees for alleged security reasons, but he refused. IOF then have savagely destroyed the land, ensuring that he can not fix again.
RAMALLAH, August 3, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli authorities issued administrative detention orders against 32 Palestinians, Monday reported the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club (PPC).
PPC said while three prisoners received administrative detention orders for the first time, the remaining 29 prisoners received renewed administrative orders.
Administrative detention is a procedure that allows the Israeli military to hold prisoners indefinitely on secret information without charging them or allowing them to stand trial.
Israel routinely uses administrative detention against Palestinians. Statistics show that over the years, thousands of Palestinians have been held in Israeli custody as administrative detainees for extended periods of time.
The Israel human rights group B’Tselem says that, “International law stipulates that [administrative detention] may be exercised only in very exceptional cases – and then only as a last possible resort, when there are no other means available to prevent the danger.”
“Israel’s use of administrative detention blatantly violates the restrictions of international law. Israel carries it out in a highly classified manner that denies detainees the possibility of mounting a proper defense.”
Palestinian detainees have continuously resorted to open-ended hunger strikes as a way to protest their illegal administrative detention and to demand an end to this policy which violates international law.
Currently, there are two Palestinian prisoners on an open-ended hunger strike against Israel’s practice of administrative detention. They are identified as Mohammad Allan, an attorney from Nablus, and Abdul-Majid Kderat from Tubas in the West Bank.
Meanwhile, prisoner Khere Daraghmeh, is hunger striking against medical negligence by the Israel Prison Service.
In April 2015, the United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR) expressed concern by the continued and increasing use of administrative detention by Israeli authorities against Palestinians.
There are around 500 detainees serving administrative detention in several Israeli jails. 18 of the Palestinian Legislative Council members are currently held in Israeli detention without charge or trial, including the most recent arrest of Khalida Jarrar.
“The Israeli practice of administrative detention has been condemned on numerous occasions by the UN Human Rights Office and the Human Rights Committee that oversees implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Israel has ratified, said the UN News Center.
“OHCHR reiterates it call on Israel to end its practice of administrative detention and to either release without delay or to promptly charge all administrative detainees and prosecute them with all the judicial guarantees required by international human rights law,” OHCHR spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani said.
To be noted, in July 30, The Israeli parliament, Knesset, cast its approval on its second and third reading of a legislation allowing the force-feeding of hunger striking Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails.
“Force-feeding constitutes a serious violation of human rights and the right of a person to do as they wish with their body,” said the group. “International human rights groups and health organizations took a position based on ethics, morality, and science. This law asks doctors to violate a centuries-old oath,” said a statement issued by Joint List oppositionist Arab group in the Knesset.
Following are the names of the 33 detainees who received administrative detention orders:
|Ra’ed Sharabati||Hebron||Three months|
|Munther Abu Atwan||Hebron||Four months|
|Imad Ismail||Hebron||Four months|
|Shaher Abu Ghalyon||Hebron||Four months|
|Ra’ed Jabari||Hebron||Four months|
|Ghassan Ibrahim Ahmad||Bethlehem||Four months|
|Mohammad Hrebat||Hebron||Four months|
|Ahmad Hremi||Bethlehem||Four months|
|Fares Masalmeh||Hebron||Four months|
|Alaeddine Jalboush||Jenin||Six months|
|Adnan Azayzeh||Jenin||Six months|
|Mohammad Fayeq Ata||Ramallah||Four months|
|Qusai Abu Allan||Hebron||Three months|
|Zaid Abu Fannar||Hebron||Four months|
|Hejazi Qawasmeh||Hebron||Four months|
|Names of Prisoners||City||Sentence length|
|Sa’adi al-Atrash||Hebron||Six months|
|Rami al-Iwawi||Hebron||Six months|
|Izz Ed-Din Sirfi||Nablus||Four months|
|Osama Shahin||Hebron||Four months|
|Ibrahim Abu Srour||Bethlehem||Four months|
|Hirbi Ajloni||Hebron||Four months|
|Tha’er Samada’a||Ramallah||Six months|
|Mohammed Asi||Ramallah||Four months|
|Shadi Abu Ikr||Bethlehem||Four months|
|Moneer Manasra||Hebron||Four months|
|Abd al-Qader Sharawneh||Hebron||Four months|
|Rami Abu Sharkh||Ramallah||Six months|
|Rasim Til||Hebron||Four months|
|Mohammed Mimeh||Jericho||Six months|
|Mohammed Hrezat||Hebron||Six months|
|Yasir Banat||Hebron||Four months|
|Nader Taqatqa||Bethlehem||Four months|
BETHLEHEM, August 4, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli forces detained early Tuesday 21 Palestinians and summoned three others from various West Bank districts, said security sources.
Israeli forces raided ‘Aida refugee camp to the north of Bethlehem, where they detained six Palestinians after breaking into their houses.
The detainees were identified as Hazem Abu ‘Aker, 22, Srour Abu Srour, 18, Muhannad Ja‘ara, 18, Ahmad al-Mashayekh, 22, Samed Hammad, 20, and Layth Nasrallah, 18.
Forces also proceeded to summon two minors during the predawn raid. Both Ahmad Ja‘ara, 15, and ‘Abdullah Hammad, 16, were handed notices ordering them to turn themselves to Israeli intelligence in the ‘Gush Etzion’ detention and interrogation center.
Forces also raided Ash-Shawawra village to the east of the city, where they summoned a Palestinian.
Muhammad Ad-Dar‘awi, an ex-detainee who was recently released from an Israeli prison following a 13 year imprisonment, was handed a notice ordering him to appear before Israeli intelligence.
Meanwhile in East Jerusalem, Israeli police detained nine Palestinians, including six Islamic-Waqf appointed guards and two minors, from inside Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
The detained guards were identified as Majdi al-‘Abbasi, Fadi Bakir, Ra’ed Zughayir, Majd ‘Abdin, Ahmad Abu ‘Alya and Husam Bader
The other three detainees were identified as Radwan ‘Amr, Manuscripts Director as well as two minors Amir Bilbaisi and Muhammad al-Hashlamun.
This came as tensions rose in the holy city as police assaulted Palestinian Muslim worshippers and Islamic Waqf-appointed guards, injuring two guards identified as Suleiman Abu Mayyala and Hamad Badran.
Abu Mayyala and Badran were assaulted after they confronted a group of settlers who forced their way into the Mosque compound via al-Maghariba (Moroccan) Gate. Among the group was a settler who attempted to hoist the flag of Israel inside the compound and chant racist slogans. Police intervened and escorted the settler out of the holy place.
In the meantime, forces raided Nablus city, where they detained a Palestinian after breaking into and ransacking his house in ‘Iraq At-Tayeh area. The detainee was identified as Fadel al-Masri, 20.
Furthermore, forces stationed at Huwwara military checkpoint to the south of the city stopped and detained a Palestinian. The detainee was identified as Anas Darawsha, 26, coming from ‘Awarta town to the south of the city.
Forces also stormed Madama village to the south of the city, where they detained a Palestinian after storming and ransacking his house. The detainee was identified as Anas Ziadeh, 20.
In the meantime in Hebron district, forces detained three Palestinians after breaking and wrecking havoc into their houses in al-Fawwar refugee camp to the south of the city.
The detainees were identified as Suhayb aT-Titi, 18, ‘Izzat and ‘Ala al-‘Azza.
Israeli forces also stormed the Yatta locality of Khirbet Shi‘ib al-Butm, where they cur barbed wire fence erected around plots of land belonging to local Palestinians.
One of the Palestinian landowners was identified as Yousef al-Jabbarin.
Israeli soldiers raided several Hebron neighborhoods and set up checkpoints at the entrance of the old city neighborhood of Tal‘at Abu Hadid, the northern entrance of the city as well as Sa‘ir to the northeast of the city, where they stopped and examined Palestinian registered vehicles and inspected passengers’ identification cards.
Israeli occupation bulldozers on Tuesday morning tore down three homes in Dahmash town near occupied Ramla, under the pretext of no building permit.
The homes are property of The Assaf family, and were demolished on April 15 earlier this year , but were rebuilt by the villagers and the popular committees.
The Dahmash neighborhood shelters about 700 Palestinians, and its case dates back to the Palestinian Nakba (catastrophe ) in 1948, when the Zionist forces forcefully displaced over 800 thousand Palestinians from their homes.
The people currently living in Dahmash were originally displaced from their homes in 1948 and took the neighborhood to be their home, refusing to leave Palestine.
Palestinian member of the Israeli parliament (Knesset), MK Taleb Abu Arar said that Israel’s second demolition of these homes shows insolence and insistence on apartheid.
Despite the strong heat-wave in the country right now, Israel chose to demolish the home and leave the people in it to suffer in the open.
Abu Arar demanded international protection for the Palestinians living in Israel, who face continuous displacement and demolition threats, while the Israeli government approves the construction of thousands of illegal settlement units on stolen Palestinian land.
Documents Prove Bedouin Village Slated For Ethnic Cleansing By Israeli Occupation Has Been Owned By Palestinians Since 1800’s
Sussia, the Palestinian village in which structures are slated for demolition, sits on private Palestinian land owned by local people, according to a document of the Defense Ministry’s Civil Administration obtained by Haaretz.
Palestinian Detainees Suffer Abuse, Appalling Conditions In Israeli Occupation Prisons
The health condition of two Palestinian detainees, including a hunger-striking detainee, is deteriorating as a result of mistreatment and miserable conditions in Israeli detention centers, said Palestinian Prisoners Club (PPC) and the Detainees and Ex-Detainees Committee.
Palestinian Children Suffer Increasing Levels of Physical Abuse By Israeli Occupation Forces
Palestinian children detained by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank during the first half of 2015 suffered increasing levels of physical violence, according to Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCIP) research.
Injuries And Destruction As Israeli Occupation Attacks Worshipers At al-Aqsa Mosque
Dozens of Muslim worshipers Sunday were injured, while many suffocated by tear gas during clashes that erupted with Israeli police at Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque compound, after groups of Jewish hardliners broke into the Islamic holy site to mark Tisha B’Av holiday, according to local sources and witnesses.
Israeli Extremists Fill Ancient Palestinian Agricultural Water Well With Earth And Rocks Near Salfit
Israeli settlers filled up an ancient agricultural well in the West Bank village of Deir Istiya west of Salfit on Saturday, local farmers told Ma’an.Witnesses said that the settlers filled the well with earth and rocks using “primitive” tools.
NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers filled up an ancient agricultural well in the West Bank village of Deir Istiya west of Salfit on Saturday, local farmers told Ma’an.Witnesses said that the settlers filled the well with earth and rocks using “primitive” tools.Khalid Maali, a researcher on settlement affairs, said that filling up the well is part of a larger plan to forcibly move people from Wadi Qana to clear the way for the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements.Several illegal Israeli settlements surround Deir Istiya, the closest of which are Revava and YaqirI.About 17 percent of Deir Istiya’s village territory is classified as Area B, according to the Applied Research Institute of Jerusalem, with the remaining 83 percent Area C, giving Israel full civil and military authority.ARIJ said in a 2013 report that Deir Istiya “has been subjected to numerous Israeli confiscations for the benefit of various Israeli objectives,” including the construction of settlements, outposts, checkpoints, bypass roads and the Israeli separation wall.The report said that Israeli settlers living on the village’s land “have had a significant impact on Palestinian residents and their properties.”Settler attacks have contributed to the loss of Palestinian lands and landowners have been barred from their plots, which have been fenced in with barbed wire and planted with trees, the report said.It added: “Israeli settlers have also carried out a series of attacks against Palestinian landowners in an attempt to intimidate them and deter them from returning to their lands.”
JERUSALEM, July 26, 2015 (WAFA) – Dozens of Muslim worshipers Sunday were injured, while many suffocated by tear gas during clashes that erupted with Israeli police at Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque compound, after groups of Jewish hardliners broke into the Islamic holy site to mark Tisha B’Av holiday, according to local sources and witnesses.
WAFA correspondent said clashes erupted at the compound after around 30 groups of Jewish hardliners protected by special police forced their way into the site in groups to mark the so-called Destruction of the Temple holiday.
This came after Jewish settler groups, known as ‘Temple Mount’ organizations, made calls urging all Jewish settlers to storm the holy site to mark Tisha B’Av Day, a Jewish holiday commemorating the ‘destruction of the temple’.
The organizations reportedly demanded that Al-Aqsa be entirely closed to Muslims starting Saturday evening and all day Sunday. They also requested the holy site to be closed to Muslims during proposed provocative Israeli visit hours from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. from Monday to Thursday next week.
In response to these calls, Israeli police shut down the mosque compound since 7:00 AM before Muslims’ entry to allow settlers into the compound. Hours later, only worshipers above the age of 50 were allowed entry.
Police further took finger prints of worshipers before granting them access into the compound.
The entry of settlers provoked worshipers, who gathered to defend the site, spurring clashes with police, who provided protection to settlers.
Police fired teargas canisters and stun grenades towards the Muslim worshipers, who responded by chanting religious slogans and throwing rocks and shoes at them. Several properties and a number of the mosque’s gates were destroyed during the assault.
Police further attacked the southern building located within the compound, known as al-Qibli mosque, after surrounding it and forcing its guards out, attacking one of them. Police closed the building’s gate with metal chains and prevented worshipers from entering.
Furthermore, police physically assaulted and beat up a number of worshipers, including women and elderly, during its assault. A woman, a child, and a youth were also arrested by the police outside the mosque compound.
Among the hardliners who entered was Israel’s Minister of Agriculture Uri Ariel.
Yesterday, Israeli police went on high alert in and around the Old City of Jerusalem and al-Aqsa Mosque after a video of a Jewish woman insulting Prophet Mohammad went viral over the weekend.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the Israeli assault against the holy site, calling upon the Arab and Muslim countries to immediately intervene to safeguard the mosque and other holy Muslim and Christian sites in Jerusalem.
The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Mohammad Hussein, who was present at al-Aqsa during the Israeli assault on the compound, also warned of the repercussion of this Israeli attack, stressing that recurrence of violations against the holy site could transform the region into a “time bomb”, and warned of a religious war.
Today’s clashes are the most violent since November 2014, when Israeli police raged a crackdown against worshipers there and entered the southern building.
The move was then faced by angry Jordan, whose Islamic Waqf is in charge of monitoring daily activity in al-Aqsa Mosque, that warned to reevaluate its diplomatic ties with Israel, including its 20-year peace accord, in light of what it termed Israeli “violations” on the site.
Jews refer to the site as the “Temple Mount,” claiming it was the site of two Jewish temples destroyed in ancient times. The site is home to the third holiest mosque in Islam, and houses the al-Aqsa Mosque Building and the Dome of the Rock.
The site has witnessed recurrent clashes in recent years between Muslim worshipers and Israeli police, most frequently due to provocative visits by Jewish extremists who believe the mosque should be destroyed and replaced with a Jewish temple.
RAMALLAH, July 25, 2015 (WAFA) – Palestinian children detained by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank during the first half of 2015 suffered increasing levels of physical violence, according to Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCIP) research.
Data compiled by DCIP since January 2015 shows that ‘86 percent of Palestinian children experienced some form of physical violence during their arrest or interrogation, a 10 percent increase from 2014.’
The research, which was released on Friday, said that, “unlike their Israeli counterparts, Palestinian children have no right to be accompanied by a parent and, in the majority of cases, no access to legal counsel during interrogation.”
“Ill treatment of Palestinian children remains widespread and systematic in the Israeli military detention system as children arrested by Israeli forces arrive at Israeli interrogation centers blindfolded, bound and sleep deprived,” according to DCIP documentation.
It noted that, “Israeli forces used blindfolds and hand ties on almost all the children interviewed by DCIP, and in nearly 55 percent of cases they succumbed to strip-searches once in custody.” Children continued to report they signed documents during interrogation drafted in Hebrew, a language they do not understand.
DCIP documented four cases involving the use of solitary confinement for interrogation purposes by Israeli forces, a practice, which DCIP stressed, amounts to torture under international law.
For over a decade, ill treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system has been widespread and systematic,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, Accountability Program director at DCIP.
“Recent amendments to Israeli military law simply serve to improve the appearance of the military detention system and have failed to practically address the abuse of Palestinian children.”
Meanwhile, A UNICEF report released in February found that ill treatment of Palestinian child detainees remained widespread and systematic despite recent changes to Israeli military law.
According to the report, Israeli authorities have, since March 2013, issued new military orders and taken steps to reinforce existing military and police operating procedures related to the detention of Palestinian children. However, evidence collected by a UNICEF-led working group since 2013 shows continued and persistent reports of ill treatment against Palestinian children by Israeli forces.
Lawmakers in both the United Kingdom and United States have recently called on their respective governments to hold Israel accountable for ill treatment of Palestinian child prisoners.
DCIP reported that, “Of nine complaints filed by DCIP in 2014, one investigation was closed without charge and the other eight remain pending.”
Around 500 to 700 Palestinian children, some as young as 12, are arrested, detained and prosecuted in the Israeli military detention system each year.
“The majority of Palestinian child detainees are charged with throwing stones. In addition to physical and psychological abuse during arrest and detention, Palestinian child detainees are overwhelming denied bail and routinely held in pretrial custodial detention for up to several months.”
To be noted, International juvenile justice standards, which Israel has obliged itself to implement by signing the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991, demand that children should only be deprived of their liberty as a measure of last resort.
Israel is the only country in the world that automatically prosecutes children in military courts that lack basic and fundamental fair trial guarantees.
DCIP said that, “Since the occupation of Palestinian territory in 1967 by Israeli forces, Palestinian children have been charged with offenses under Israeli military law and tried in military courts. Israeli military law is only applied to Palestinians even though Israeli settlers live in the same territory. No Israeli children come into contact with the Israeli military court system.”
“At the end of May, a total of 163 Palestinian children were imprisoned in the Israeli military detention system, according to the Israel Prison Service.”