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Dagelijks archief 6 maart 2017

No less than 55 Major Violations in the First Week of Geneva Talks’ Fourth Round

No less than 413 Individuals Killed in One Week including 54 Children

Geneva Talks’ Fourth Round

SNHR has released a report, in which the Network documents 55 major violations at least that were perpetrated by the parties to the conflict in Syria in the first week of round 4 of Geneva Talks, where 88% of the violations were at the hands of the Syrian-Russian regime.

The report notes that many acts of unlawful killing and bombardment operations were recorded even though Ankara Ceasefire Agreement has been in force since December 30, 2016, as the massacre rates have increased, and civilians and vital civil facilities are being targeted more heavily following the commencement of Geneva Talks.

The report also says that the detainees issue has yet to see any progress even though it was addressed in U.N. Resolution 2254 that emphasizes that all detainees, particularly children and women, must be released immediately. Furthermore, the report didn’t monitor any changes in the rates of arbitrary arrests in the areas under the control of the Syrian regime. Additionally, SNHR hasn’t recorded -according to the report- any unconditional releases by the Syrian regime from its detention centers, where such releases were part of prisoner exchange deals the regime struck with armed opposition, or by releasing detainees who are under the jurisdiction of the terrorism court after paying a cash bail, where the detainee remains on trial.

The report says that the death toll of the combat operations that were conducted in the period of time covered by the report has amounted to 413 individuals who are divided into 282 civilians, including 54 children and 35 women, and 131 armed opposition fighters. The Syrian regime killed 141 individuals – 99 civilians, including 24 children and 14 women, and 42 armed opposition fighters, while Russian forces killed 23 civilians including four children and nine women. In addition, 74 civilians were arrested.

The report adds that the Syrian regime forces and pro-regime militias are still denying the aids access to the besieged areas, where these militias detained, on Monday, February 20,2017, a number of trucks that were part of an aid convoy heading to Al Wa’er neighborhood in Homs city for a few hours, before the convoy returned without entering the neighborhood. This, certainly, doesn’t mean that the rest of the areas are in a better situation, as the aids are barely sufficient and, more importantly, the siege must be completely lifted -in accordance with the international humanitarian law and Security Council Resolutions- in all areas. The Syrian government is still demanding that the UN, the UN’s executive partners, or any relief organization have to ask for its permission before entering the besieged areas. However, the Syrian government, usually, denies permissions after an agonizingly and deliberately complicated procedures instead of facilitating access for aids.

The report documents no less than 55 violations that include combat and arrest operations during the first week of round 4 of Geneva Talks, taking place in February 20-27, 2017, including 42 violations at the hands of the Syrian regime forces, 4 by Russian forces, 1 by Self-management forces, 2 by armed opposition factions, and 3 by the international coalition forces in addition to 1 violation by other parties.

The report breaks down the types of violations that occurred, where 41 violations were through combat operations: 31 by Syrian regime forces, 4 by Russian forces, while 14 violations were through arrests including 13 at the hands of the Syrian regime forces alone.

The report calls on the United Nation to form a committee on the ground to monitor the violations of the ceasefire, identify their perpetrators, in cooperation and coordination with active local human rights organizations, and enforce sanctions and consequences that would deter the violators of the ceasefire agreement in order to preserve the continuity of the agreement, and save it from falling apart. Additionally, detainees must be released, and their fates must be revealed, and aids must be delivered to besieged areas.

Lastly, the report emphasizes that the international community has to link the ceasefire agreement with launching a political process that aims towards a transitional phase, resulting in a democratic regime, which will be an actual and real end for all the suffering of the Syrian people.

View full Report

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Report: Israeli forces detained 420 Palestinians in February

Israeli security forces brutally arrest Palestinian protesters in West Bank [Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency]

Israeli security forces brutally arrest Palestinian protesters in West Bank

Israeli forces detained 420 Palestinians during the month of February, including 70 minors and 22 females, according to a statement released on Saturday by the Palestinian Prisoners’ Centre for Studies.

The centre said in its monthly report that 12 people were detained from the besieged Gaza Strip, including five fishermen whose boats were destroyed by Israeli forces before their detention, two who were detained at the Beit Hanoun crossing, and five who were detained after Israel alleged they attempted to cross the border fence between the besieged enclave and Israel.

Read: Israeli forces detain Palestinian women and children

A journalist was also among the detainees, identified by the centre as Humam Muhammad Hantash from the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron. He was sentenced to administrative detention – imprisonment without charge or trial based on undisclosed evidence.

The centre added that 88 administrative detention orders were issued by Israeli courts in the same period, 23 of which were issued for the first time, while 65 were renewed orders. Meanwhile, 32 administrative detention orders were issued against Palestinians from Hebron.

According to Addameer, as of January, 6,500 Palestinians were being held in Israeli prisons, 536 of whom were being held under administrative detention.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Bedouin village receives 42 Israeli demolition orders


he Israeli Civil Administration has replaced on Monday the recently issued 42 stop work orders by demolition orders in Khan al-Ahmar Bedouin village, located in Israeli-controlled Area C in the West Bank.

Lawyer of the Palestinian villagers Shlomo Lecker said that a large part of the Bedouin village is threatened with demolition after the distribution of 42 demolition orders.

Last week, the villagers filed an urgent petition against the demolition process, requesting an injunction on those demolition orders from the High Court.

Haaretz Hebrew newspaper pointed out that the Civil Administration has issued in a rare move 42 demolition orders at the same time.

The Palestinian villagers had earlier refused an Israeli order to evacuate all of the community’s buildings, including its school.

Khan al-Ahmar’s primary school, which was built in 2009 with international support and has around 140 pupils from surrounding Bedouin communities, is among the buildings to be destroyed.

According to Haaretz, Israel has avoided large-scale evacuation of Palestinians in Area C, partly because of the involvement of European and American diplomats.

Khan al-Ahmar is situated in an area Israel earmarked for the future expansion of Maale Adumim illegal settlement.

In 2016, Israeli authorities demolished 12 dwellings in the community, rendering 60 people homeless, including 35 minors.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

IOF arrested 15,000 Palestinian women since 1967


Detainees and ex-detainees committee revealed that Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) have arrested about 15,000 Palestinian women since 1967.

In a statement on Monday, the committee said that arrest campaigns are still going on against Palestinians females. The arrest of women was more escalated over the past two years.

Israeli authorities have been continuing the arrest of 56 Palestinian female captives in Israeli jails of Sharon and Damoun, including 16 minor detainees who are under 18 years in addition to 11 sick women.

In 2016, Israeli forces rounded up about 170 Palestinian women. Two female captives are held under the illegal administrative detention with no charge or trial.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

UK government told: Brotherhood ‘best firewall’ against extremism

Supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi stage a rally to mark the second anniversary of the violent breakup of major protest camps in Cairo (Cem Özdel - Anadolu Agency)

Supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi stage a rally to mark the second anniversary of the violent breakup of major protest camps in Cairo, Egypt

“Political Islamic groups” like the Muslim Brotherhood are the “best firewall” to support the democratic process, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has said.

In a series of written responses to questions posed by the Foreign Affairs Committee’s sixth report the FCO added that it “did not support military intervention as a way to resolve disputes in a democratic system,” in what appears to be a clear rejection of the military coup that occurred in Egypt when the first freely-elected President Mohamed Morsi was ousted in 2013.

In its report released December 2016, the Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC) were highly critical of the findings of the Sir John Jenkin’s report on the Muslim Brotherhood, released in December 2015 and commissioned by the former UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

Read: Brotherhood leader says reviews do not mean reconciliation with Egypt regime

The report, which was only released in a 12-page summary, not in full, concluded: “For the most part, the Muslim Brotherhood have preferred non-violent incremental change on the grounds of expediency.”

However, it accused the movement, which has been proscribed and declared a “terrorist” organisation in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates but is legal in the UK and the rest of the world, of being prepared to countenance violence – including, from time to time, terrorism – where gradualism was ineffective.

The FAC questioned the veracity of the Jenkins report given that the removal of the democratically elected government was concluded by the killing of hundreds of its supporters in protest sites by Egyptian security forces but no mention was made of this in Sir John Jenkin’s report.

The committee expressed disappointment and called on the foreign office to explain why these key events were excluded from the review’s terms of reference.

A vehicle for change

For its part the government agreed with the premise that the Ennahda party in Tunisia was an example of a “political Islamist group” that had adopted a model of consensual democracy.

It also agreed that individuals need a vehicle through which they can address grievances to avoid those locked out of the political process turning to violence if they are unable to change their situation.

The FCO went on to admit: “Political Islamist groups, including their senior leaders have a crucial role to play in ensuring that this happens in the Middle East and North Affairs region.”

Read: Jailed Brotherhood spokesman disciplined for New York Times article

The new, more positive, stance of the FCO has been greeted warmly by the Foreign Affairs Spokesperson of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice party, Mohammed Soudan, who told MEMO:

“The Brotherhood has never refused to engage with any authority or government to explain its ideology.”

“I am encouraged by the fact that the Foreign Affairs Committee have spoken to some of our leaders and even to academics about the guiding principles of our non-violent movement.”

He also welcomed the call by the Foreign Affairs Committee for the UK government to engage with the Muslim Brotherhood leadership in exile despite the “sensitivities” of the Egyptian government who have outlawed the movement and imprisoned its leadership – many of whom face life imprisonment and the death penalty.

However, Soudan told MEMO that he did not expect the Egyptian government to give up trying to discredit the Muslim Brotherhood or attempting to persuade US President Donald Trump to restrict the movement’s operations: “Trump is an unknown quantity, we do not know what he is going to do, but the US is not a ‘one man’ show, we will have to wait and see what will happen.”

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Palestinian injured child remained handcuffed in Israeli hospital


Palestinian child, shot by Israeli forces with a rubber-coated steel bullet in his left eye during a violent raid into Shufat camp in occupied Jerusalem, has been kept chained to an iron bed at Israel’s Hadassah Medical Center.

Physicians for Human Rights strongly condemned Israeli authorities for keeping a 14-year-old boy held in Israeli custody while receiving medical treatment, considering the act as a flagrant violation to medical ethics.

Haaretz Hebrew newspaper said that the child is scheduled to be released today to house arrest.

The child was shot and injured in his left eye last week with a rubber-coated steel bullet as Israeli forces accused the boy of throwing stones at Israeli military vehicles during their violent raid into Shufat camp.

The bullet ripped through his left eye and has caused internal bleeding.

The child was taken in an ambulance heading to Makassed Hospital before being stopped by Israeli police forces at a military checkpoint erected at the entrance to the camp.

The forces allowed the ambulance to pass after holding it for more than half an hour, Physicians for Human Rights revealed.

The Israeli force insisted on following the ambulance with a military vehicle and demanded the driver to go to Hadassah hospital.

At the hospital, the child was subjected to tough investigation without the presence of his parents.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Israeli settlement operations in West Bank continue

Image of labourers building units of homes for Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem [Sliman Khader/Apaimages]

Image of labourers building units for Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem

As Israeli authorities plan to establish a new settlement project in the south of Jerusalem, the Israeli forces have embarked on bulldozing an agricultural land near the southern Nahalin village of Bethlehem.

Ibrahim Shakarnah, the President of the Nahalin Villagers Council, has said that the Israeli bulldozers have begun demolishing the village’s main highway, which has been closed some years ago, including the “Danielle” settlement as well as other neighbouring areas, in a move to establish a public resort for the settlers.

Read: Two faces to the settlements

Speaking in an interview with Quds Press, Shakarnah explained that the demolish of what he described as “historical road” of the Nahalin village, came after an appeal for re-opening the road was filed to the Israeli Supreme Court. The road was confiscated in 2002 and leads to the city of Bethlehem.

He condemned the occupation authorities on starting the levelling operations ahead the court’s decision which is yet to be announced.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Hamas mourns Palestinian youth fatally gunned down by IOF


Hamas Movement mourned in a statement issued Monday the Palestinian young man Basil al-A’raj who was shot and killed by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) in his house early today.

Spokesman for the Movement Hussam Badran said that the Palestinian people will never stop giving sacrifices as long as Israeli occupation continues its inhuman crimes.

Badran stressed the urgent need to put an end to Israeli-PA security coordination which facilitated, according to his statements, the Israeli targeting of Palestinian resistance fighters.

Basil al-A’raj is the last Palestinian victim of the security coordination policy, he said.

Al-A’raj was fatally gunned down by IOF soldiers at daybreak Monday after they broke into his family home in the central West Bank province of Ramallah.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Israel to demolish Palestinian village in West Bank

Israeli occupation wants to use the land of the village to build facilities serving illegal Israeli Jewish settlements in the nearby area


Earlier, the villagers appealed against Israeli demolition orders, but the Israeli courts failed to prevent Israeli occupation from carrying out the demolitions

Israeli Civil Administration in occupied West Bank announced on Monday it had decided to demolish Palestinian village of Khan al-Ahmar.

The village is located in Area C, according to the Oslo Peace Accords signed between Israel and the Palestinian Authority in 1993. This area is under Israel security and administrative control.

Israel newspaper Haaretz reported that the Israeli Civil Administration in the West Bank had issued 42 demolition orders.

According to the local Palestinian villagers, who have been living in this village since before the Israeli occupation of 1948, the demolition of 42 homes means that more than two thirds of the village would be vanished.

Earlier, the villagers appealed against Israeli demolition orders, but the Israeli courts failed to prevent Israeli occupation from carrying out the demolitions.

Hundreds of the Palestinians live in the village without the basic infrastructure. They rejected an Israeli proposal to move to another place, stressing this is their own land and no one obliges them to leave it.

The Israeli occupation is planning to confiscate the land of this village in order to build facilities serving the illegal nearby Israeli Jewish settlements.

(Source / 06.03.2017)

Israeli forces murder Palestinian in West Bank

He was just released from the Palestinian Authority prisons


“One Palestinian was murdered and two others were wounded,” the eyewitness said. “The man was identified as Basel al-A’raj,” he added

Israeli occupation forces murdered on Monday morning Palestinian man, wounded two others in occupied West Bank city of Ramallah.

Witnesses said that special Israeli occupation forces raided the town of Al-Bira in the outskirts of Ramallah and surrounded a house where the Palestinian was attacked.

“The Israeli forces started shooting at the house,” one of the eyewitnesses told Safa news agency, prompting the Palestinians to respond to the Israeli fire.

After a short while of shootout, the Israeli occupation launched a small missile that caused a large explosion inside the house.

“One Palestinian was murdered and two others were wounded,” the eyewitness said. “The man was identified as Basel al-A’raj,” he added.

The Israeli media claimed that the Palestinian started shooting, but the eyewitnesses stressed that the Israeli occupation forces who started.

Israeli army reported that the Palestinian was wanted since he was released from the Palestinian Authority prisons in September 2016.

Al-Araj was detained without charges or explanation by Palestinian security forces in April last year along with Haitham Siyaj and Mohamed Harb.

Their controversial case made headlines when the three men joined three other detainees in a hunger strike in Palestinian prison, protesting severe torture and mistreatment by the PA.

Under heavy pressure, the six prisoners were released, but the PA continued following them up and supplying information to the Israeli intelligence about their whereabouts.

In the wake of the murder, Palestinian factions blamed the PA’s security cooperation with Israel for the murder, saying that the PA adopts the policy of “revolving door” with Israel. It releases Palestinians from prisons and enables Israeli forces of arresting or murdering them.

(Source / 06.03.2017)