LAW Weekly Roundup 15- 21 March 2001

Israeli Occupation forces have not yet ceased their violations against Palestinian civilians within the Occupied Territories.

Over the past week, they have continued to shoot at, beat, abuse and kill unarmed civilians, shell Palestinian residential areas and tighten the siege over Palestinian towns and villages, maintaining their isolation. Between 15 and 21 March 2001, Israeli forces killed two Palestinians from the Gaza Strip and a 10 year-old child was killed by settlers. First: Violating the right to life and security of person: 1. Deaths: 21 year-old Muhammad Abu Oun from Al Sheikh Radwan in Gaza, 32 year-old Kamel Al Jamal, a first lieutenant from Al Shateí refugee camp, and 10 year-old Muhammad Nassar from Dahiat Al Barid in Jerusalem were killed in the past week. At 2:30 pm on Friday 16 March 2001, a bullet hit a 21 year-old Gazan, Muhammad Abu Oun, in the heart. According to information gathered from Gaza by LAW, clashes took place that day between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli soldiers positioned at Al Mintar (ëKarnií) crossing in east Gaza. Israeli soldiers fired rubber- coated metal bullets at the demonstrators, hitting Muhammad in the heart from a distance of only 15 meters. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Al Shifaí Hospital in Gaza. On Saturday 17 March 2001, the body of 10 year-old Muhammad Nassar from Dahiat Al Barid (east Jerusalem) was found near Neve Yaíkov settlement, opposite Dahiat Al Barid. According to LAWís documentation, at around 3:30 pm on Friday 16 March 2001 Muhammad left his home for a playground near Neve Yaíkov where he used to meet friends. By 7.30 pm, when he had still not returned home, his family began looking for him. At 11:30 that night, they went to the Neve Yaíkov police station to inform them about their missing child. They were sent away and told to go instead to the Russian Compound station in Jerusalem. However, staff at the Russian Compound told them that they had no jurisdiction over the area where the child had gone missing, and the parents were left without police help to search for their missing child until 4am that night, They resumed the search the following day. Muhammadís uncle, Tawfiq Nasser, stated to LAW that the family began searching again at 7.30 am on Saturday 17 March. At 1.30 pm, two of Muhammadís relatives, 27 year-old Hassan Nasser and 39 year-old Fayez Nasser, found his body wedged between two boulders about 20 metres away from 20m a school in Neve Yaíkov. The two stated that Muhammadís face was deformed and his skull and teeth had been broken. On the back of his head were signs of repeated heavy blows by sharp stones; his back, chest and feet were bruised and the artery on his right wrist had been sliced open by a sharp tool. The two also said that near Muhammadís body they found two ëkippaí hats and four white gloves. A trail of blood 30 metres long indicated that the child had been dragged that distance by the perpetrators of this crime. The childís parents stated that the Israeli police arrived on the scene at 4pm and took the body away for an autopsy in Abu Kbeer. At 11am on Monday 19 March, the childís body was returned to his parents. When the family informed the Israeli police they intended to bury him in their cemetery plot at Al Sbat Gate in east Jerusalem, the police imposed one condition: that the interment should take place at midnight, with only a few members of the family present. The family decided instead to bury him at the cemetery in Dahiat Al Barid. At 9:30 pm on Wednesday 21 March 2001, Force 17 first lieutenant Kamel Al Jamal, 29, from Al Shateí refugee camp in Gaza, was killed during the shelling of a Palestinian Presidential Guard outpost in Al Sheikh Ajleen. According to information gathered by LAW, the Palestinians stationed in the outpost heard gunshots so they climbed the watchtower to see what was happening. As they did so, Israeli forces positioned 500 metres away, at Netsarim settlement in south Gaza, fired 4 shells at the tower, hitting Kamal Al Jamal in the abdomen and causing shrapnel injuries to various other parts of his body. He died immediately. Three others with him were also injured during the shelling: 1. Rizeq Abu Sitta, 20, from Khan Younis, is critically injured, with shrapnel wounds in the chest and thighs. 2. Ahmad Al Arayshi, 34, from Al Rimal, was hit by shrapnel in the upper parts of his body. 3. Nafeth Halas, 26, from Al Shujaíyeh, was hit by shrapnel in various parts of his body. The Israeli army has claimed that they shelled the outpost after Netsarim settlement had been targeted by three ëHawní missiles. However, eyewitnesses have confirmed that there was no disturbance in the area before the shelling, and Palestinian Security sources have confirmed that they do not have access to this kind of ammunition. According to medical staff at Ramallah Hospital, 12 year-old Luíay Al Tamimi from Deir Nitham in Ramallah is now clinically dead after being shot in the forehead on 14 March 2001. The fragmented his skull, penetrated his brain and settled in the back of his head. The shooting happened during clashes at the east entrance to Deir Nitham. He was taken to Ramallah Hospital, where he remains. LAW has already stated that Luíay Al Tamimi was shot with a new kind of bullet - ëwinged rectangularí - from a distance of 200m by Israeli soldiers in a military jeep stationed at an unpaved track opposite the villageís north entrance. Yousef Al Tamimi, Luíayís 37 year-old uncle, stated to LAW that Israeli forces also tried to hinder the arrival of Palestinian ambulances, inspecting them thoroughly on their way in and out of the area. He added that Luíay had been hit at 3.40pm, but the ambulance did not manage to leave the area until 4.50 pm. Luíay underwent a 65-minute surgery. 2. Injuries: At 11 am on Thursday 15 March 2001, six Palestinian pupils from Hebronís Al Ibrahimiyeh School were injured when a stun grenade was fired into the schoolyard. According to information gathered by LAW, one of the Israeli soldiers positioned 400m away in the Iíbeido building fired the stun grenade at the school, injuring the following pupils: 1. Muhammad Wazwaz, 11, head wounds. 2. Hazem Asha, 11, wounds in the back 3. Tareq Salhab, 9, lacerated eardrum. 4. Alaí Abu Mayyaleh, 9, head wounds. 5. Ahmad Al Salaymeh, 9, wounded in the left part of the body. 6. Muhammad Abu Sbeih, 9, lacerated eardrum. On Friday 16 March 2001, nine Palestinian civilians were hit by bullets and shrapnel during clashes between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli forces at Al Mintar (ëKarnií) crossing in east Gaza: 1. Yusri Abu Ras, 18, from Al Shateí refugee camp, was hit in the eye by a bullet that entered his head. He is in a very critical condition. 2. Aboud Ashour, 15, from Al Sheikh Radwan quarter. A bullet glanced off his head. 3. Fadi Al Shawa, 15, from Al Naser quarter, was hit by a bullet in the right thigh. 4. Mustafa Al Kurdi, 17, from Al Shateí refugee camp, was hit by a bullet in the right hand. 5. Rami Halas, 15, from Al Shujaíyeh, was hit by a bullet in the abdomen 6. IsmaíAl Qneitah, 21, from Al Shateí refugee camp, was hit by a bullet in the back. 7. Anwar Abu Dayyeh, 21, from Beit Lahia, was hit by a bullet in the left thigh. 8. Hasan Baker, 36, from Al Rimal quarter, received shrapnel injuries in the neck. 9. Ahmad Al Baba, 15, from Al Zaytoon quarter, received shrapnel injuries in the thigh. At 8am on Saturday 17 March 2001, 21 year-old Anwar Abu Dayyeh from the Bedouin village Um Al Nasser village in the Gaza Strip was hit in the left leg by a bullet fired from Netsarim settlement, 700m away, as he walked along a road where there were no clashes taking place. At midday, clashes broke out between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli forces at Al Mintar crossing, east Gaza, leading to the injury of 21 year-old Jawdat Abd Al Hadi from Beit Hanoun with a bullet in the left eye, and of 18 year-old Muhammad Al Daíaseh from Al Shateí refugee camp with a metal bullet in the head. At around midday on Sunday 18 March 2001, clashes again broke out between Palestiniandemonstrators and Israeli forces at Al Mintar crossing. 12 year-old Mahmoud Yassin from Al Shateí refugee camp and 26 year-old Muhammad Eid from Jabalia were both hit by bullets in the right thigh. At around midday on Monday 19 March 2001, during a peaceful womenís demonstration at the Al Ram checkpoint north of occupied Jerusalem in protest at Israeli crimes and the siege imposed on the Palestinian territories, Israeli soldiers fired stun grenades at the women, leading to the injury of four demonstrators, a paramedic and one other person: 1. Palestinian Legislative Council member Dr Hanan Ashrawi was hit in the left leg. 2. Vivian Hanna, 37, was hit in both legs. 3. Layla Odeh, 45, was hit in the right thigh. 4. Kamila Theeb, 35, was hit in the left leg. 5. Muíammar Urabi, 29, a PMRC Unions paramedic, was hit in the left ear. 6. Imad Ghosheh, 42, was hit in the left leg. In the afternoon of Tuesday 20 March 2001, clashes took place between Palestinian youngsters and Israeli soldiers at Al Mintar crossing, east Gaza, leading to the injury of two children: 1. Sufyan Ahmad, 13, from Al Sheikh Radwan quarter in Gaza, was hit by a bullet in the right foot. 2. Bassam Jaradeh, 15, from Al Sheikh Radwan quarter in Gaza, was hit by a bullet in the right thigh. At four oíclock that afternoon, Israeli soldiers opened fire at a group of Palestinian fishermen on their boat 100m off the Rafah shore without prior notice or justification. 29 year-old fisherman Ayman Al Bardaweel from Rafah was hit by a bullet in the right leg. Second: Settler Attacks On Friday 16 March, settlers from ëYitzharí near Nablus attacked a Palestinian taxi on its way to Nablus with stones, causing the taxi to upturn and roll four times. Three passengers were injured. According to information gathered by LAW, at 3 pm, once the taxi reached the Bureen intersection, Nablus, it encountered a car full of settlers coming in the other direction. The settlers began throwing stones at the taxi, causing the car to veer off the road and roll over four times. The driver, 24 year-old Abd Al Rahman Al Khayyat from Nablus, suffered a fracture to the left side of his skull head and his fifth vertebra, as well as neck wounds. He was taken in a critical condition to Al Nisaíi Union Hospital in Nablus. 49 year-old Muna Masíada from Seelit Al Thaher in Jenin suffered by various bruises and a deep wound to her forehead, while her 26 year-old son, Muhammad Masíada, suffered bruising in the chest and head. Also on Friday 16 March, a group of settlers attacked Kubbaniet Um Haron in Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem, examining the house of an old lady who lived there before she died 2 years ago. That evening the settlers returned, accompanied by Israeli soldiers who broke into the house and demolished a nearby room belonging to Muhammad Shalaldeh. 35 year-old Sabah Idkeidek from Sheikh Jarrah stated that the Israeli police have now sealed off the house with large padlocks. She also mentioned that she had been informed that a Jewish woman had claimed to be the houseís official owner and requested rent payments. Sabah is now frightened for her own 3-room house , which is separated from the Sheikh Jarrah property by only one wall ñ if that wall is demolished anyone would easily be able to enter her home from the first one. Third: Shelling At 7.15 pm on Friday 16 March, Israeli forces shelled a military liaison post southwest of Tulkarem and another one on the Gheishuri factory, 500m from Palestinian houses in the western quarter of the city. As a result, four houses were damaged due to medium and heavy machinegun fire. These were: 1. Zaki Grayebís four-story building with 30 residents. A number of windows and a bedroom closet were destroyed. 2. Omar Dmeiriís house which has 13 residents. The shelling caused holes in the front walls, a damaged roof and four smashed windows. 3. Muhammad Bdeirís house with 8 residents. 2 windows were smashed and large holes made in the front rooms and bedroom. 4. Hamdan Bdeirís house with 7 residents. One window was smashed. Israeli forces stationed at the agricultural greenhouses east of Kfar Darom (Deir Al Balah) settlement, shelled the houses of the Abu Salim, Al Lawh and Al Awar families with medium and heavy machinegun fire from a distance of 80m. This resulted in severe damage to the facades, water tanks and TV receiver networks. The shelling continued for two hours. At 7:30 pm on Saturday 17 March, Israeli soldiers stationed at the northeast border of the Gaza Strip shelled the houses of the Salah, Al Masree, Wahdan, Nashwan and Al Trabeen families with medium and heavy machinegun fire at Al Amal in Beit Hanoun, causing severe damage. Late that night, Israeli soldiers stationed at the ëNeve Dakalimí settlement shelled houses the west refugee camp with medium and heavy machinegun fire. The shelling went on until 3 am, causing great damage (holes in walls, windows, water tanks and roofs) to houses owned by the Abu Ubayda, Abu Radwan and Abu Khreis families. At around 2 am on Sunday 18 March, Israeli soldiers positioned south of Erez in the northern Gaza Strip shelled a Palestinian National Security force post and a number of residential buildings in northern Beit Hanoun with medium and heavy machinegun fire. This went on until 2:45, causing severe damage to 6 houses belonging to the Sweilem family and a PNSF outpost (holes in walls, windows and water tanks). AT 10 pm on Sunday 18 March 2001, Israeli soldiers at two military outposts in the ëNeve Dakaleemí settlement west of Khan Younis shelled several homes in the camps and an Al Farra residential building with heavy machinegun fire. Many houses were structurally damaged and their electricity, water and television suppliers destroyed, as well as their windows. The houses belonged to: 1. Husam Abu Matroud, 5 residents. 2. Ahmad Abu Matroud, 8 residents. 3. Hussein Mansour, 8 residents. The shelling caused severe shock and panic within these families. On Monday 19 March 2001, Israeli forces at the border near the Brazil quarter in Rafah opened heavy machinegun fire from a distance of 200m at houses in Brazil, leading to the injury of 4 children in Al Nour mosque street: 1. Muhammad Al Akhras, 15, shrapnel in the head. 2. Ahmad Irfan, 15, shrapnel in the right ear. 3. Abdullah Thnoun, 16, shrapnel in the right hand. 4. Islam Al Basheeti, a bullet in the right leg. On the same day, Israeli forces shelled houses in Al Amal quarter and Khan Younis camp from four outposts using medium and heavy machinegun fire, severely damaging the house of: 1. Hamza Hsein, 10 residents. 2. Hamza Abu Arquob, 12 residents. 3. Hamada Shluleh, 6 residents. 4. Farhan Abu Arquob, 6 residents. Four: Attacking Journalists On Friday 16 March, 32 year-old Egyptian journalist Rifíat Qasem, who works for the Egyptian Middle East News Agency, suffered teargas inhalation at the City Inn, north Al Bireh, while covering clashes taking place between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli forces that day. On 17 March, Israeli forces detained journalist Firas Tanneenah, a reporter for Al Ayyam newspaper, for two hours at the Israeli outpost at the north entrance to Jerusalem as he attempted to go to work in Ramallah. He was interrogated and had 22 photos confiscated. At around midday on Monday 19 March, and during the peaceful womenís march at the Al Ram checkpoint north of Jerusalem, 54-year-old Italian photojournalist, Lino Thamdario, was injured in the leg when Israeli soldiers fired stun grenades at the demonstrators. Five: Detention Israeli army Special Forces terrorised Palestinian taxi passengers on the Jenin ñ Selit Al Harthiyeh line in order to capture and detain one of the passengers. According to information gathered by LAW, at 5 pm on Thursday 15 March, a Palestinian taxi on the Jenin-Haifa road on its way to Selit Al Harthia was chased by two unmarked cars and eventually forced to stop. The first car, a white Subaru with Palestinian plates containing two masked men, overtook the taxi, and the second, an Israeli-licensed car containing 6 armed masked men, drove up behind it. Having stopped the taxi, the masked men surrounded the car and pointed their gunat the passengers from close range. They searched the taxi and its passengers, and inspected their IDs before arresting 21 year-old Saíd Zyoud from Selit Al Thaher, who works in his fatherís store in Jenin. During the search, 4 Israeli military jeeps accompanied by Special Forces arrived and dragged Saíd, who is under arrest, to an unknown place. Meanwhile, the taxi and its other passengers were taken to Salem checkpoint and detained for two hours before being released. Saídís brother, Rabeeí, 22, who also works for his father, was arrested on 12 February in the same place on the same road. He too has not yet been released. At around 2:30 am on Saturday 17 March, Israeli forces broke into Ithna village in Hebron, attacked a number of houses and arrested four people: 1. 32 year-old Kamel Awwad. 2. 31 year-old Awwad Abu Zalta. 3. 40 year-old Naíem Basheer. 4. 27 year-old Abd Il Hamid Abu Jheisheh. On 17 March, Israeli soldiers arrested 21 year-old Haj Seif Abu Nahel from Gaza at Rafah crossing as he was arriving from Saudi Arabia after his pilgrimage to Mecca, and at Erez they arrested 30 year-old Raíed Abu Libdeh from Rafah, who was returning from the West Bank where he has been working for six months as a policeman in Nablus. At 5 pm on 17 March, Israeli forces arrested two Palestinian fishermen from their boat off Beit Lahia coast in Gaza. According to information gathered by LAW from eyewitnesses, an Israeli military cruiser stopped the boat at a distance of 4 sea miles from the shore. At gunpoint, they forced 27 year-old fishermen Huseein Al Habeel, and 17 year-old Ahmad Al Habeel, both from Al Shateí, to remove their clothes and board the cruiser in their underwear. They then took them to the Israeli detention station at Erez crossing, where they remain to this day. The two fishermen were arrested inside the area where Palestinian fishing is permitted - according to Palestinian ñ Israeli agreements, Palestinians were initially allowed to sail and fish within 20 sea miles of the coast. Following the 1996 uprisings, the Israelis decreased this to 12 sea miles, and since the current uprising broke out Palestinian fishermen have only been permitted to go four miles from the shore. On 19 March, Israeli soldiers at a military checkpoint at the entrance to Al Mawasi, Rafah, assaulted 18 year-old Samir Sabbah from Rafah when he refused to leave the area. He was helping an old Palestinian from Al Mawasi to carry some food to her village through that checkpoint. As a result of the assault, he suffered severe head injuries and bruising on various parts of his body. He was taken to Al Jneineh hospital for treatment. At around 8:30 am on Wednesday 21 March 2001, Israeli soldiers at the Atara intersection in Ramallah hindered a bus on its way from Nablus to Ramallah, inspected it, checked the passengersí IDs, arrested 22 year-old Barakat Abd Al Fattah from Aqruba in Nablus and took him to an unknown place. Six: Bulldozing and Demolition On Thursday 15 March, Israeli bulldozers demolished the entrances to a brick factory in Azoun village, Qalqilya, owned by 47 year-old Ali Gharabeh from Kufur Al Thuluth. According to information gathered by LAW, Israeli forces bulldozed the 1-dunum factoryís entrances and confiscated some of its machinery, including a dynamo, a cement mixer, an oil pump and a JCB tractor, taking them to Qdomim police station on the pretext that the factory had no construction license. This was in spite of the fact that Gharabeh confirmed he had been issued with a license from the Palestinians Ministry of Local Governance. Gharabeh stated that the Palestinian Ministries of Industry and Local Governance had informed him that part of land the factory is built on is in area B, although Israel claims it is in area C. On 15 March, Israeli forces bulldozed 61 dunums of olive, citrus and fruit trees to the west of the road between Al Shuhadaí intersection and Al Mintar crossing in east Gaza. The bulldozing started at 10 am and went on until 5pm. The Malkam Al Samouni, Dalul, Khweiter, Al Manasrah, Al Arqan, Salma and Al Dahdouh families own this land. On the same day, Israel bulldozed four dunums of date and almond trees south of Kfar Daromís agricultural greenhouses belonging to the Abu Gharabeh family. They also bulldozed a Makrout company water pipeline close to the border east of Deir Al Balah that supplies many houses in that area. On Sunday 18 March 2001, Israeli settlers in Hebron set large cement blocks on a 1-dunum Palestinian archeological post in Tal Rameeda quarter in the middle of Hebron, where they are attempting to construct dozens of residential units for settlers. At around 12:30 noon on Monday 19 March, two Israeli tanks and bulldozers crossed the border east of Beit Hanoun and bulldozed a military outpost owned by the Palestinian Border Forces, as well as 49 dunums of olive and citrus trees belonging to the Abu Ida, Sweilem and Zweidi families. During the early hours of Wednesday 21 March 2001, Israeli military bulldozers broke into some agricultural land 1 km north of the ëKosfeemí settlement southeast of Deir Il Balah, bulldozed 3 dunums of olive and almond trees owned by Abdullah Al Adeeni, as well as destroying an irrigation network and a store for equipment and agricultural fertilizer. Seven: Attacking Paramedics At 1pm on Monday 19 March, Israeli forces at the northern entrance to Jerusalem arrested and assaulted two Palestinian Red Crescent paramedics. According to RC sources, the PRCS in Ramallah was informed of a car accident near Al Ram checkpoint, so paramedics Luíay Radad and Ahmad Ramadan took an ambulance to the scene. They aided the injured people and took them to Hadasa ñ Al Eisawiyeh hospital. On their way back from Jerusalem to Ramallah, an Israeli soldier and a policeman delayed and insulted them at the checkpoint, ordering them to show him their IDs and get out of the ambulance. They opened the ambulance doors for inspection and upturned its contents, forcing them to open all First Aid bags and cupboards. The policeman didnít allow them to contact the PRCS centre for more than one hour and confiscated their private telephone. The inspection went on during that time, until Luíay was taken to the other side of the checkpoint and forced to stand in the sun for a long period. When Muhammad Awad, the head of Al Bireh Aid Center, arrived, he inquired as to the reason behind the ambulance menís delay. One of the soldiers assaulted Muhammad and Ahmad and ordered them to leave the area at once, more than one and a half hours after the ambulance was first stopped. The policeman also tried to force Luíay Radad to sign a paper written in Hebrew, which he did not understand. LAW Society reiterates the following: 1. The Israeli army is committing increased crimes against Palestinian civilians and using the Israeli war arsenal against unarmed Palestinian civilians. 2. They continue to bomb and shell Palestinian residential areas. 3. They continue to use collective punishment against Palestinians and deprive them of their basic human rights. LAW demands: The Israeli Government to immediately stop the use of excessive and indiscriminate force and collective punishments against Palestinian civilians. The establishment of an international investigation committee based on United Nations Security Council resolutions 1322 of Oct 7, 2000, to investigate the violations of international humanitarian law committed by the Israeli forces inside the occupied Palestinian territories. The international community must hold a conference for the High Contracting Parties of the Fourth Geneva Convention in order to take practical measures to ensure Israel's adherence to the convention. The international community must pressurize Israel to immediately to immediately put an end to the occupation of the Palestinian territories and effectively support the implementation of the Palestinian right to self-determination. Placing the Palestinian people under international protection.

LAW - The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment is a non-governmental orgdedicated to preserving human rights through legal advocacy. LAW is affiliate to the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), FÈdÈration Internationale des Ligues de Droits de l'Homme (FIDH), World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and Member of the Euro- Mediterranean Human Rights Network.

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