The state of insecurity witnessed serious escalation across the Gaza Strip where killings of women augmented under mysterious conditions and armed clashes renewed.
According to Al Mezan’s field investigations, at approximately 6pm on 14 March 2007 a woman was found dead in north Gaza beach. She was identified as a resident of Gaza City who was kidnapped and killed on the same day. The identity of the perpetrators remains unknown. On 12 March 2007, another woman was found on Beit Lahia beach after being shot in her legs. Three women had faced the same fate during March, raising to five the number women who were killed in 2007.
Armed clashes occurred in north Gaza, and have resulted in the killing of 25-year-old Mohammad Toaema and the injury of ten persons; among whom three children. Reciprocal kidnapping of each faction’s members were also reported.
On 13 March 2007, violent armed clashes erupted between an extended family and members of the Ministry of Interior’s Executive Force. Alaa Al Haddadd, aged 45, was killed and ten others were injured. One man was seriously wounded. Another clash between families was reported on the same day, and resulted in the injury of five persons, one of whom is in critical condition.
Overall, Al Mezan has documented the killing of four people, injury of 32 and kidnapping of 13 since 10 March 2007. In addition, houses, vehicles and commercial stores were subjected to damage.
Al Mezan is gravely concerned by the incidents, parts of which are politically motivated, that occurred in Beit Hanoun, Beit Lahia, and Az-Zaitoun neighborhood of Gaza City. The Center strongly condemns the continued killing and suffering of civilians as a result of these violent acts and violations of human rights.
Al Mezan believes that such incidents contradict with the current positive atmosphere between Palestinian factions, which necessitates the initiation of investigations into previous crimes and brining perpetrators to justice.
Al Mezan also emphasizes the urgency of investigating without delay the frequent killings of women and other assaults, especially attacks on private property. The making of justice under law is the only feasible way to regain security and restore confidence between civilians and their authorities.