Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Continue Systematic Attacks on Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT)
Israeli violations of international law and humanitarian law continued in the OPT during the reporting period (26 April - 2 May 2007):
During the reporting period, IOF killed two Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. They also wounded three Palestinian civilians and a French solidarity activist.
On Thursday evening, 26 April 2007, IOF shot dead a member of the Palestinian Presidential Guard (Force 17) and wounded two of his colleagues in al-Bireh town in the West Bank. Those security men were chasing a suspicious vehicle when IOF soldiers positioned in the vicinity of Psegot settlement fired at them. On Wednesday, 2 May 2007, IOF shot dead a Palestinian civilian and arrested his brother in the northern Gaza Strip. IOF fired at the two brothers when they were collecting metals.
During the reporting period, a French solidarity activist was wounded when IOF used force to disperse a peaceful demonstration against the construction of the Wall in Bal’ein village, west of Ramallah. Additionally, a Palestinian civilian was wounded by IOF soldiers positioned at Tarqoumia crossing near Hebron.
During the reporting period, IOF conducted at least 28 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During those incursions, IOF arrested 55 Palestinian civilians, including six children and a woman. Thus, the number of Palestinians arrested by IOF in the West Bank since the beginning of this year has mounted to 1,062. IOF also transformed the roof of a building in Hawara village, south of Nablus, into a military site.
Restrictions on Movement:
IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the OPT and imposed severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.
IOF have imposed a strict siege on the Gaza Strip. They have imposed severe restrictions at its border crossings as a form of collective punishment against Palestinian civilians.
IOF have closed Rafah International Crossing Point since 25 June 2006, even though they do not directly control it. During the reporting period, the crossing point was reopened only for three separate days. IOF have partially reopened commercial crossings, especially al-Mentar (Karni) crossing, but many goods and medical supplies have been lacked in markets in the Gaza Strip. The crossing was closed on 27 April 2007. IOF have also continued to close Erez crossing in the northern Gaza Strip. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip have been prevented from traveling through this crossing. IOF have allowed international workers to pass through the crossing. With this closure, only few Palestinian patients have been able to travel to hospitals in Israel and the West Bank. In addition, IOF have continued to prevent Palestinian fishermen from fishing for more than 10 months.
IOF have tightened the siege imposed on Palestinian communities in the West Bank. They have isolated Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank. IOF positioned at various checkpoints in the West Bank have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. IOF also erected more checkpoints on the main roads and intersections in the West Bank. During the reporting period, IOF soldiers positioned at various checkpoints and border crossings in the West Bank arrested at least 13 Palestinian civilians, including two children.
IOF have continued to construct the Annexation Wall inside the West Bank. For this purpose, they have confiscated more areas of Palestinian land. On 26 April 2007, IOF issued a military order confiscating 239 donums  of agricultural land in Bardala village in the northern Jordan Valley for the purpose of the construction of a new section of the Wall. According to local sources, the construction of the new section would also isolate at least 5,000 donums of agricultural land. On the same day, IOF issued a military order confiscating at least 60 donums of agricultural land in Jalboun and Faqqou’a villages, east of Jenin, for alleged security purposes. This latest military order complemented another one from 2003 to reroute the Wall in Jenin district.
Israeli settlers living in the OPT in violation of international humanitarian law have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property, especially in Hebron. On 27 April 2007, an Israeli settlers from Kiryat Arba settlement, southeast of Hebron, opened fire at Palestinian house opposite to the settlement. Soon after, IOF raided the house, beat members of the family and arrested two of them because they confronted the settler who attacked their houses.
Israeli Violations Documented during the Reporting Period (26 April - 2 May 2007)
1. Incursions into Palestinian Areas and Attacks on Palestinian Civilians and Property in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip
Thursday, 26 April 2007
1. Jamal ‘Abdul Hadi Nakhla, 40; and
2. ‘Othman ‘Arabi Nakhla, 22.
1. Sami ‘Abdullah al-Khawaja, 23;
2. Jihad Fat’hi Qamhiya, 15;
3. Mujahed Hussein Hassiba, 16;
4. Hashem Sameeh al-Houh, 23; and
5. ‘Alaa’ Hafez al-Kayali, 26.
According to investigations conducted by PCHR, a patrol of the Palestinian Presidential Guard erected a checkpoint in al-Bireh town in the context of a security plan to pursue illegal vehicles. At approximately 20:30, officers at the checkpoint suspected a civilian vehicle, so they ordered its driver to stop, but he did not obey the order and traveled towards his family house in Jabal al-Taweel neighborhood in the east of the town near Psegot settlement. Immediately, a vehicle of the Presidential Guard chased the suspicious vehicle. As soon as the security vehicle became close to the suspect’s house, members of his family opened fire at it and security men returned fire. Soon after, IOF soldiers positioned in military posts inside the aforementioned settlement opened fire at the Palestinian security vehicle. As a result, three security officers were wounded:
1. Mahmoud Tariq Mahmoud al-Ahmad, 28, from Rummana village west of Jenin, seriously wounded by a gunshot to the head (he died shortly after having been admitted into the hospital);Friday, 27 April 2007
2. Eyad Wassef al-Basheer, 42, wounded by a gunshot to the thigh; and
3. ‘Othman Dwaikat, 22, wounded by shrapnel to the head.
1. Ameer Ahmed al-Ameer, 26; andSaturday, 28 April 2007
2. Waleed Ibrahim Makkawi, 24.
Sunday, 29 April 2007
1. Muhannad Ahmed Sa’aida, 25;
2. Hani Ahmed Sa’aida, 33;
3. Shalash Mustafa Jarhoud, 26;
4. Helmi To’aima Ka’abna, 33;
5. Hussein Khalil ‘Atiyat, 31;
6. ‘Ammar Mahmoud Sa’aida, 31;
7. Yousef Mohammed Sa’aida, 21; and
8. Ibrahim Yousef ‘Atiyat, 19.
Monday, 30 April 2007
1. Anas As’ad al-Barq, 23;
2. ‘Aamer ‘Abdullah al-Banna, 26;
3. Qais Anwar ‘Awayes, 21;
4. Mohammed Maher ‘Asaliya, 22;
5. Shareef Mohammed Abu al-S’oud, 22;
6. Ramzi Jamal Abu al-S’oud, 21;
7. Zafer ‘Omar al-Ashqar, 21; and
8. Saher Hamdi ‘Olaiwa, 45.
1. Khaled Mohammed Hamdan, 16;
2. Rasheed ‘Othman Bani Shamsa, 17; and
3. Qussai Bassem Bani Shamsa, 16.
1. Mohammed ‘Abdul Fattah al-Natour, 27;Tuesday, 1 May 2007
2. Salah Hisham al-Riahi, 18;
3. Bahaa’ Yassin Abu al-Kalbat, 20;
4. Maher ‘Abdul Rahim Khattab, 30;
5. Ra’ed Yousef ‘Olaiwi, 18; and
6. ‘Abdul Rahman Fayez Samara, 21.
1. Ameen Ahmed Mustafa, 23;IOF also summoned four Palestinian civilians for interrogation.
2. Nabeel Mohammed Hersha, 28;
3. Yousef Ahmed Sadah, 23; and
4. ‘Anan Tayseer Te’ma, 24, a member of the Palestinian General Intelligence.
1. Bahaa’ ‘Abdul Rahman ‘Eissa, 17;Wednesday, 2 May 2007
2. Na’el Rebhi ‘Eissa, 18; and
3. Nour Marwan Hamdan, 18.
1. Mohammed Lufi al-Shata, 45;
2. ‘Alaa’ Ahmed Tawalba, 24;
3. Ra’ed Ahmed Tawalba, 27; and
4. Eyad Hussein Hamdan, 23.
2. Continued Siege on the OPT
IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the OPT and imposed severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including Occupied East Jerusalem.
IOF have continued to close all border crossings of the Gaza Strip for nearly one year. The total siege imposed by IOF on the Gaza Strip has left disastrous impacts on the humanitarian situation and has violated the economic and social rights of the Palestinian civilian population, particularly the rights to appropriate living conditions, health and education. It has also paralyzed most economic sectors. Furthermore, severe restrictions have been imposed on the movement of the Palestinian civilian population. As a consequence of the total siege imposed on the Gaza Strip, at least 73 percent of the families in the Gaza Strip live below the poverty line, and unemployment has been estimated at 55 percent. In addition, the living conditions in the Gaza Strip have further deteriorated with the non-payment of salaries for the public sector for seven months as international donors have frozen aids provided to Palestinians, and Israeli authorities have suspended the transfer of tax revenues to the Palestinian National Authority since March 2006. Moreover, the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip has severely impacted the flow of food, medical supplies and other necessities such as fuel, construction materials and raw materials for various economic sectors.
The closure of border crossings deprives the Palestinian civilian population in the Gaza Strip of their right to freedom of movement, education and health.
IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on fishing in the Gaza Strip. Following the attack on IOF on 25 June 2006, IOF prevented fishing. Fishermen have been subjected to intensive monitoring by IOF, which use helicopter gunships and gunboats to monitor the fishermen. The Oslo Accords allow Palestinian fishermen to go fishing up to 20 nautical miles away from the Gaza seashore.
The West Bank
IOF have imposed a tightened siege on the West Bank. They have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians and imposed curfews on a number of Palestinian communities.
At approximately 16:00 on Tuesday, 1 May 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at a checkpoint established at Rameen intersection, west of Nablus, arrested Sameer Hammouda Khdaish, 33, from Balata refugee camp east of Nablus.
At approximately 08:00 on Wednesday, 2 May 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at Hawara checkpoint, south of Nablus, arrested ‘Anan Maher ‘Obaid, 20, and his brother ‘Allam, 18.
Also on Wednesday morning, IOF soldiers positioned at Hawara checkpoint, south of Nablus, arrested Ra’ed Nash’at al-Nadi, 17, from ‘Askar refugee camp northeast of Nablus, claiming that he was carrying home-made hand grenades.
On Wednesday evening, IOF soldiers positioned at Beit Fourik checkpoint, east of Nablus, arrested Rafeeq Rajeh al-Haj Mohammed, 20, from Beit Fourik village.
At approximately 18:30 on Tuesday, 1 May 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at a checkpoint established at the entrance of Shoufa village, southeast of Tulkarm, arrested Bassam Shareef Shahrour, 16, from Tulkarm.
At approximately 16:30 on Tuesday, 1 May 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at a checkpoint near the campus of the Arab American University, southeast of Jenin, arrested Bilal Khairi Yahia, 28, and Ahmed Mohammed Mershed, 28, both from Kufor Ra’ei village southwest of Jenin.
On Saturday evening, 28 April 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at al-Leila checkpoint, southwest of Hebron, arrested ‘Abdul Rahman Mohammed Badran, 55, a taxi driver from Ethna village.
On Tuesday afternoon, 1 May 2007, IOF soldiers positioned at Tarqoumia crossing, northwest of Hebron, fired at Ibrahim Nemer al-Tumaizi, 40, from Ethna village. He was wounded by a gunshot to the abdomen. He was evacuated to an Israeli hospital. According to eyewitnesses, IOF fired at al-Tumaizi when he was near the crossing loading goods to transport them to local markets.
At approximately 12:30 on the same day, IOF soldiers positioned at a checkpoint at the main entrance of al-Ma’sara village, south of Bethlehem, arrested Hasan Hussein Zawahra, 29.
At approximately 13:00 on the same day, IOF soldiers positioned at a checkpoint established at al-Sawahra intersection, northeast of Bethlehem, arrested Ahmed Salah al-Harimi, 29.
3. Construction of the Annexation Wall
IOF have continued to construct the Annexation Wall inside West Bank territory. During the reporting period, IOF used force against a peaceful demonstration organized by Palestinian civilian in protest to the construction of the Wall in Bal’ein village, west of Ramallah.
4. Settlement Activities and Attacks by Settlers against Palestinian Civilians and Property
Israeli settlers living in the OPT in violation of international humanitarian law have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
Recommendations to the International Community
1. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their legal and moral obligations under Article 1 of the Convention to ensure Israel’s respect for the Convention in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. PCHR believes that the conspiracy of silence practiced by the international community has encouraged Israel to act as if it is above the law and encourages Israel continue to violate international human rights and humanitarian law.
2. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to convene a conference to take effective steps to ensure Israel’s respect of the Convention in the OPT and to provide immediate protection for Palestinian civilians.
3. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to comply with its legal obligations detailed in Article 146 of the Convention to search for and prosecute those responsible for grave breaches, namely war crimes.
4. PCHR calls for the immediately implementation of the Advisory Opinion issued by the International Court of Justice, which considers the construction of the Annexation Wall inside the West Bank illegal.
5. PCHR recommends international civil society organizations, including human rights organizations, bar associations and NGOs to participate in the process of exposing those accused of grave breaches of international law and to urge their governments to bring these people to justice.
6. PCHR calls upon the European Union to activate Article 2 of the Euro-Israel Association Agreement, which provides that Israel must respect human rights as a precondition for economic cooperation between the EU states and Israel. PCHR further calls upon the EU states to prohibit import of goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements in the OPT.
7. PCHR calls on the international community to recognize the Gaza disengagement plan, which was implemented last year, for what it is — not an end to occupation but a compounding of the occupation and the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.
8. In recognition of ICRC as the guardian of the Fourth Geneva Convention, PCHR calls upon the ICRC to increase its staff and activities in the OPT, including the facilitation of family visitations to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.
9. PCHR appreciates the efforts of international civil society, including human rights organizations, bar associations, unions and NGOs, and urges them to continue their role in pressuring their governments to secure Israel’s respect for human rights in the OPT and to end its attacks on Palestinian civilians.
10. PCHR calls upon the international community to pressure Israel to lift the severe restrictions imposed by the Israeli government and its occupation forces on access for international organizations to the OPT.
11. PCHR reiterates that any political settlement not based on international human rights law and humanitarian law cannot lead to a peaceful and just solution of the Palestinian question. Rather, such an arrangement can only lead to further suffering and instability in the region. Any peace agreement or process must be based on respect for international law, including international human rights and humanitarian law.
 One donum is equal to 1,000 square meters.