Killing: During the reported period, IOF killed two Palestinian civilians. On 13 February 2006, IOF shot dead a Palestinian woman who was grazing animals nearly 250 meters away from the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel. On 15 February 2006, IOF shot dead a mentally handicapped Palestinian civilian in Qabatya village, southeast of Jenin. During the reported period, IOF shelled Palestinian communities in the Gaza Strip. An artillery shell hit an apartment building in the northern Gaza Strip. IOF also fired at Palestinian civilians during incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. As a result, 13 civilians were wounded, including 7 who were wounded in extra-judicial executions.
Incursions: IOF conducted 31 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During these incursions, IOF raided houses and arrested 83 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children. IOF also transformed 10 houses into military sites. IOF used undercover units and trained dogs during these incursions.
Restrictions on Movement: IOF have continued to impose a comprehensive siege on the OPT, in violation of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of Palestinian civilians.
IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the Gaza Strip, transforming it into a big prison. Rafah International Crossing Point on the Egyptian border, the sole outlet for the Gaza Strip to the outside world, has been partially reopened. The crossing point is operated for 8 hours a day only. IOF reopened Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing and allowed less than 4,000 Palestinian workers to travel to their work places inside Israel. Palestinian workers are also checked in a special room that is equipped with an as yet unidentified type of x-ray machine. Although IOF reopened al-Mentar (Karni) commercial crossing, east of Gaza City, they allowed the entry of foodstuffs only.
IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on Palestinian communities in the West Bank. They have imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the West Bank. IOF have completed cutting off the eastern sector of the West Bank from the remainder of the West Bank. Some 2,000,000 Palestinian residents of the West Bank are prohibited from entering the area, which constitutes around one-third of the West Bank, and includes the Jordan Valley, the area of the Dead Sea shoreline and the eastern slopes of the West Bank mountains. IOF have continued to prevent Palestinians aged below 45 from entering the al-Aqsa Mosque for Friday Prayers. During the reported period, IOF arrested 11 Palestinian civilians, including 4 children, at various checkpoints in the West Bank.
Annexation Wall: IOF have continued to construct the Annexation Wall inside West Bank territory. During the reported period, IOF continued to construct a separation barrier around “Shavi Shomron” settlement, northwest of Nablus. IOF constructed cement sections at a distance of nearly 500 meters at the eastern border of the settlement near the Nablus — Jenin road. IOF uprooted at least 400 olive trees in Beit Siera village, west of Ramallah, for the purpose of the construction of a section of the Wall. IOF also closed the sole entrance to Marda village, west of Nablus, with an iron gate intended to control the movement of Palestinian civilians to and from the village. IOF installed the iron gate after they had placed an iron fence to the north of the village and constructed a barrier to the south of the village in order to separate it from “Ariel” settlement. In addition, IOF used force to disperse peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians in protest to the construction of the Wall in Bal’ein and ‘Aaboud villages near Ramallah. Four Palestinian civilians were wounded by rubber-coated metal bullets. IOF also arrested and violently beat 15 demonstrators, but released them later.
Illegal Settler Activities: Israeli settlers in breach of international humanitarian law continue to reside in the OPT and have launched a series of attacks against Palestinian civilians and property. During the reported period, Israeli settlers launched 5 attacks on Palestinian civilians and property in the West Bank. As a result of these attacks, a Palestinian child was injured. Two Israeli settlers also wrote slogans insulting the Prophet Mohammed on the walls of a mosque in Nabi Elias village, east of Qalqilya. A number of Israeli settlers closed the Nablus — Qalqilya road. They also attacked houses near Nablus. In addition, IOF demolished two houses in East Jerusalem.
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