Israel declares Gaza "enemy entity"

Al-Haq is deeply concerned by the Israeli security cabinet’s unanimous decision on Wednesday, 19 September to declare the Gaza Strip an “enemy entity,” ostensibly paving the way for the imposition of collective penalties on the 1.5 million Palestinian civilians living in the Gaza Strip. These include intensifying the already severe border closures, limiting the provision of essential supplies, and dramatically reducing the supply of electricity, all of which will exacerbate the existing dire humanitarian crisis. 

Investigation: Israel conducting military training exercises in the West Bank

As a Palestinian organization dedicated to the protection and promotion of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), Al-Haq would like to raise its serious concern regarding the ongoing use by Israeli occupying forces of Palestinian homes and villages in the West Bank to carry out military training exercises. Over the course of the last four months, Al-Haq has documented a number of incidents in different areas in the West Bank, the facts of which are summarized below. 

Consolidation of Jerusalem annexation continues with the Light Rail

An international tender was issued in 2000 for preliminary qualification for the construction and operation of the first line of the Light Rail Transportation system. As early as 2001, land belonging to Palestinians in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Shu’fat was confiscated by the Jerusalem Municipality for the future light rail. Utilities work was completed in 2005, and on 17 July 2005, two French companies signed an agreement with the Israeli government. 

Wilful Killing of 72-Year-Old Civilian by Israeli Forces in Hebron

At approximately 12:20 am on Wednesday, 6 June 2007, a large Israeli military force, comprising at least 50 soldiers, came to the house of Yehia al-Jabari. Yehia, who was 72-years-old, lived with his family in a two-storey house in the B’er Haram area of Hebron city. Upon opening the front door of the house to the soldiers, Rajih al-Jabari, the 26-year-old son of Yehia, was dragged outside. Without any warning or justification, the Israeli soldiers began to beat Rajih, violently hitting his head against the wall of the house. 

Investigation: Israel executed 8 Palestinians in Jenin in past 3 months

Over the course of the last three months, Al-Haq has documented four incidents, the facts of which are summarised below, involving the extrajudicial executions of eight Palestinians in the Jenin area. The number of incidents, all of which involved disturbingly similar facts, indicates that, far from being isolated acts, the extrajudicial execution of Palestinians continues to be a widespread practice. Indeed, during the last year, Al-Haq has documented numerous other deaths attributable to Israeli extrajudicial executions. 

Abuse of Ambulance Drivers in Jenin Area

During the first weeks of April 2007, Al-Haq documented three cases involving the humiliation, harassment and beating of Palestinian ambulance drivers at checkpoints in the Jenin area. The number of incidents, all of which involved disturbingly similar facts, indicates that, far from being isolated acts, the abuse of Palestinian medical personnel by Israeli soldiers has become a widespread practice. Accordingly, Al-Haq has contacted the Israeli Military Judge Advocate General requesting that investigation be opened into these incidents, the facts of which are summarised below. 

The Jordan Valley, Land and Self-Determination

In the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, the Annexation Wall encroaches deep into occupied territory, confiscating land and exacerbating movement restrictions. When completed, the Wall will effectively annex 10 percent of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. In parallel to the construction of the Annexation Wall, Israel has severely restricted Palestinian access to the Jordan Valley, which comprises some 25 percent of the West Bank. While no wall has been constructed, a near impenetrable system of permits, checkpoints and closures restrict the movement of goods and people into and out of the Jordan Valley. 

BBC reporter still held two weeks after kidnapping

In an alarming resumption of the abduction and detention of foreign journalists in the Gaza Strip, BBC journalist Alan Johnston was abducted on 12 March 2007 in the Al Rimal neighbourhood in the west of Gaza City. So far, Johnston’s whereabouts, the identity of his captors and the reason behind his abduction have not been explicitly confirmed. The targeting of foreign journalists constitutes a bewildering and dangerous phenomenon that threatens the very notion of personal security and public order in the Gaza Strip. This crime is a flagrant attack on the rule of law, and further constitutes an attack against individual freedoms. 

Al-Haq Fieldworker Released from Administrative Detention

On 18 March 2007, Al-Haq fieldworker and human rights defender, Ziyad Hmeidan, was dropped off by the Israel Prison Service (IPS) at the Dahiriya (Meitar) checkpoint, south of Hebron, at around 14:15, marking the end of almost two years of detention without charge or fair trial. From the checkpoint Ziyad travelled to the village of Sa’ir, where he met briefly with a number of Al-Haq’s staff, before heading on to Bethlehem, where he was reunited with his wife and two young children. Ziyad’s release, similar to the entire process which arbitrarily deprived him of his freedom for 20 months, was marked by obstructions from the Israeli authorities. 

Impunity for Violence Against Palestinian Women and Girls Must End

Al-Haq takes the occasion of International Women’s Day, under the theme of ‘Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls,’ to highlight the alarming situation of Palestinian women who not only live under the yoke of an oppressive military occupation that denies them the fundamental protections of international human rights and humanitarian law, but who, like women in countries across the globe, also suffer the denial of their basic rights within their own society.