Israeli forces have escalated their sweeping arrest campaign of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, detaining hundreds since US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on 6 December.
Israeli occupation forces arrested 400 Palestinians on Tuesday and Wednesday alone in a crackdown Israel dubbed “Operation Green Candles.”
Israeli media reported that it was one of the biggest mass arrest campaigns in recent years, involving 1,600 occupation personnel.
The arrest campaign has targeted “ex-detainees and individuals who are considered leading figures in their communities,” Addameer stated.
These included the arrest last Monday of Khader Adnan, a former detainee who has previously undertaken two prolonged hunger strikes – 66 days in 2012 and 55 days in 2015 – in protest of his detention without charge or trial by Israel.
Yousef had been released on 31 August after being held under so-called administrative detention – without charge or trial – for two years.
He is one of 12 Palestinian lawmakers now in Israeli prisons, nine of them held under administrative detention, according to Addameer.
Israeli forces moved imprisoned Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouti – also a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council – to solitary confinement this week, after he made a statement in commemoration of the first intifada, which began 30 years ago this month.
Targeting human rights defenders
Amid the current intensification of its arrest campaign, Israel has also targeted lawyers who defend Palestinian prisoners.
On 4 December it arrested three lawyers, including Eyad Messk, who represents Raed Salah, a prominent Palestinian political leader in Israel. Israel also arrested Khaled Zabarqa and Feras al-Sabbah, who work with prisoners and human rights organizations.
Commenting on the arrests, Addameer said: “Israeli forces routinely target human rights defenders as part of an intensifying campaign against anyone seeking to further the cause of dignity and justice for the Palestinian people.”
In August, Israel detained Salah Hamouri, a Palestinian-French human rights defender and former detainee who works with Addameer.
He also remains in prison despite protests from French citizens and the French government.
As this video and others document, Israeli forces have even arrested injured persons being transported by medical personnel.
In this incident, Israeli forces stopped and forcibly removed two girls from a Red Crescent ambulance in Halhoul, north of Hebron, on Wednesday.
The two girls denied medical treatment were Manar Khader Rayan, 17, who was injured by a rubber-coated bullet, and Assalah Yousef Rayan, 17, Addameer reported.
A third child, 13-year-old Muhassen Taha, was also arrested in the same raid.
Videos and photos extensively document Israeli armed men disguised as Palestinians – so-called mistaravim – pointing weapons at journalists and seizing Palestinians in the midst of protests.
Another video published by the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem circulated widely on social media. It shows Israeli soldiers on Tuesday trying to arrest three Palestinian boys, all under the age of 8.
Thousands honor disabled protester killed in Gaza
On Friday, four Palestinians were killed and hundreds injured in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip as Israel cracked down on protests that have continued since Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the country’s capital.
Among them was 29-year-old Ibrahim Abu Thurayya, a wheelchair user who had lost both of his legs during an Israeli assault on the Gaza Strip in 2008.
He had been seen participating in protests near Gaza’s eastern boundary with Israel, waving Palestinian flags. Abu Thurayya, who supported a family of 11 by washing cars, was shot dead by Israeli soldiers with a bullet to his head.
On Saturday, thousands marched in his funeral.
- Marwan Barghouti
- First intifada
- Palestinian prisoners
- Palestinian political prisoners
- collective punishment
- Palestinian Legislative Council
- Palestinian children
- Khalida Jarrar
- Hassan Yousef
- Hassan Safadi
- Salah Hamouri
- Beit El
- administrative detention
- Khader Adnan
- Petah Tikva