UN: 30 journalists covering protests injured by Israel

Photo exhibition highlights Israel’s violations against journalists in Gaza

In Gaza alone, Israeli forces have injured 30 journalists since March 22, a UN rights body said on Monday, reports Anadolu Agency.

“30 journalists covering the protests were injured” by the Israeli army, UN Human Rights High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet said in a statement, referring to the protests held along the Israel-Gaza fence.

Bachelet said the violations continued since the adoption of UN Resolution 40/13 on March 22 this year.

The resolution ensures accountability and justice for all violations of international law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.

OPINION: Facing the facts, Israel cannot escape ICC jurisdiction

“Serious violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law have continued in the Occupied Palestinian Territory in this period, including in the context of large-scale civilian protests in Gaza,” the statement said.

Bachelet said Israel used tear gas, rubber-coated bullets, water cannon, and sound devices, as well as regularly fired live ammunition, against the demonstrators.

“As a direct result, since 22 March 2019, 13 Palestinians, including five children, have been killed,” she said.

Bachelet said hundreds of others, including health workers and journalists, have been injured.

“Many have been left with permanent disabilities, including 20 who have undergone amputations, two who have been paralysed, and six who have permanently lost their vision in one eye,” she said.

OPINION: Israel deliberately wounding Palestinian civilians in Gaza

Bachelet added that these 13 deaths since March 22 follow the killings of 189 Palestinians in the previous 12 months – including 38 children.

Since the Gaza rallies began in March 2018, nearly 270 protesters have been killed – and thousands more wounded – by Israeli forces deployed near the fence.

Demonstrators demand an end to Israel’s 12-year blockade of the Gaza Strip, which has shattered the coastal enclave’s economy and deprived its two million inhabitants of many basic amenities.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

Suicide rate in West Bank rises 14%

Suicide cases increased by 14 per cent among Palestinians in the occupied West Bank in 2018 compared to 2017, Palestinian ministry of health revealed on Monday.

According to statistics from the Police Research and Planning Department, 25 suicides were registered in the West Bank last year, a rise from 22 the year before.

Official statistics showed that 218 people attempted suicide in 2018, including 61 males and 157 females.

According to the ministry’s report, the main reason behind the rise in suicide rates is psychological problems, mainly depression, caused by the occupation and the damage it has on the area’s economy.

Samah Jabr, head of the mental health unit at the Ministry of Health, said faith and religious belief help reduce depression and anxiety, facilitate healing and prevent suicide.

READ: Palestinian barriers to healing traumatic wounds

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

5 Palestinian prisoners injured as Israel prison officers assault inmates

Armed Israeli police entered Ofer Prison on 21 January, 2019

Armed Israeli police stand outside prison cells in Ofer Prison on 21 January 2019

Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli prison of Gilboa have been physically assaulted and suffered aggression at the hands of the prison administration, a press release issued yesterday by the Palestinian Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs has revealed.

Gilboa prisoners faced “tension” last week after prison officers raided their cells for the alleged purpose of conducting searches. Prisoners were then “assaulted and bruised”, the report said.

Five prisoners were injured as a result of the raids, the NGO revealed, naming  them: Yousef Nazzal, who was severely wounded after being ravaged by a police dog, Omar Jundab, Tahseen Salameh, Ahmad Azzouni and Jihad Abu Zahra.

Vandalising  the detainees’ property, prison officers also confiscated electrical items including fans, and threw all food items on the floor, contaminating them.

Prisoners protested by shouting, banging on cell doors and launching a hunger strike.

READ: More than 200 prisoners in Israeli jails start hunger strike

The commission noted that the mistreatment of prisoners is part of a “systematic and clear policy practiced by the administration of the occupation detention centres in order to restrict prisoners and detainees and impose sanctions on them and deprive them of the most basic human rights.”

This comes as Palestinian prisons have been protesting against the placement of signal jamming devices in the jails which they say are causing them severe headaches and could lead to cancer.

Prisons have also witnessing increased tensions following the death of Palestinian prisoner Bassam Al-Sayah.

Gilboa detainees have threatened to escalate their protests if the administration does not put an end to its heavy-handed tactics and remove the signal jamming devices.

There are over 5,500 Palestinians languishing in prisons across Israel and the occupied West Bank, including 1,800 patients, 700 of whom need urgent medical intervention, according to official Palestinian figures.

Approximately 500 of those detained are being held on administrative detention – without charge or trial.

READ: Rise in number of female Palestinian prisoners in Israel jails

What are #Israel‘s preferred methods of torture?

#PalPrisoners

MEMO #Infographic The White Canvas

(Source / 10.09.2019)  

“I Watched My Father And Brother Killed By Israeli Bombs. For Me, The UK Arms Trade Is Deeply Personal”

10 SEP 3:37 PM

“The UK has, for the first time, officially invited the Israeli government to participate in the world’s largest arms fair at DSEI, set to take place in London, this month. I’m calling on UK citizens to make their voices heard.” – Amal Samouni

For many people who have lived a life free from war and military occupation, the global arms trade may seem like a distant or even irrelevant issue. But, for Palestinians like me, it is an inescapable and painful reality.

I am a 19-year-old who has spent my entire childhood in the Gaza Strip, a place sometimes described as the world’s “largest open air prison”. This is because of the crippling military blockade enforced on the region by the Israeli state, which denies us access to basic rights and resources every single day.

Not only this, but Gaza has been the target of a number of major bombing assaults by Israeli forces during my lifetime. The attack during “Operation Cast Lead” took place over 22 days, in 2008-9, when I was just 10 years old, and changed my life forever.

In the midst of the bombings on 4 January, 2009, Israeli forces stormed my family home, ordered my father out, and shot and killed him at our front door. Then, they set fire to our home and starting shooting at the rest of us, injuring my four-year-old brother Ahmed and two other children. Next, over 100 extended family members were rounded up and forced into the house of my uncle Wa’el al-Samouni, where we stayed for a day and a half, with only the food or water that was in the house.

It was there where my little brother succumbed to his injuries, as none of the injured were allowed to leave, and one of my aunts gave birth during the ordeal. A cousin and two of my uncles were bombed and killed while looking for firewood, or standing at the door. The Israeli government denies that it ordered residents to gather in one house.

Finally, Israeli forces bombed the building, killing 23 family members and leaving me trapped under rubble, next to their bodies, for three days. On 7 January, I was somehow found alive. Over 29 members of my extended family were killed over these days, with many others permanently injured. Shrapnel, which I can still feel, has remained lodged in my brain, which, as I grew up, left me to endure nose bleeds, pain in my eyes and ears, and headaches that continue today.

No human being should have to endure this kind of trauma and violence, let alone any child. Yet Operation Cast Lead alone killed 1,400 people, including more than 330 children. My story is just one of thousands of others lived by Palestinians in Gaza -– and the deadly attacks against my people continue to this day.

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A decade later, me and my family continue to resist Israel’s brutality and the oppression of our community. Since March of last year, hundreds of thousands have been protesting at the Gaza fence, in a series of protests called the “Great Return March”. We are calling for an end to the siege and for the realisation of our fundamental right, as enshrined in international law, to return to the homes from which the majority of Palestinians have been forcibly displaced.

In response, despite repeated denials that its troops intentionally target civilians, Israel has met our unarmed protests with brutal live fire, killing over 250 and injuring over 27,000. A decade on from Operation Cast Lead, Israeli bullets and bombs are still tearing our community apart.

So, how can any government or organisation that claims to uphold human rights condone these crimes? I would like to put this question, in particular, to the UK government.

The UK has, for the first time, officially invited the Israeli government to the world’s largest arms fair at DSEI, set to take place in London, this month. This is despite my story, thousands of other Palestinian testimonies and even a UN Commission of Inquiry report, earlier this year, which found that Israeli forces had committed grave violations against protesters in Gaza, which, in the words of the report, may have constituted “war crimes or crimes against humanity.”

By welcoming Israeli arms companies which market their weapons as “battle-tested” –- due to them being tested on us Palestinians in Gaza -– the UK government is directly complicit in the Israeli government’s ongoing crimes against us, well-documented by all the major human rights organisations.

But, this is only half the story.

Since the bombing of Gaza, in 2009, Britain has also increased its arms imports and exports to and from Israel. Israel’s arms trade with countries maintains our systematic oppression –- and countries like the UK are directly profiting from it. We are told that the UK’s own policy on arms exports, if applied consistently, would prohibit the sale of arms when there is a risk that they would be used for the abuse of human rights and grave violations of international law.

As such, the UK government is demonstrating a total disregard for Palestinian lives and for the memory of all those murdered by the Israeli state, including my own precious father and brother, whom I lost in front of my eyes, as a child.

I’m calling on UK citizens to show international solidarity with Palestinians by joining hundreds of human rights activists in taking action against the upcoming DSEI arms fair. I also call on the UK government to implement an immediate two-way arms embargo, between the UK and Israel, until it ceases its violations against me and my people.

A commitment to human rights means nothing if it’s simply words on a piece of paper. The UK government must act immediately, to end its complicity with the violent repression of the Palestinian people. Not just in memory of my father, brother and all the other victims of Israel’s regular bombing of our people, but to stop yet more tragedies happening to other families, like it did to ours.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

Hague to Discuss Trial for Ex-Israeli Army Chief

10 SEP 2:44 PM

Haaretz Israeli newspaper reported that the Dutch Central Court in The Hague will discuss, next Tuesday — which coincides with Israeli elections — whether it is within its competence to try Israeli politician Benny Gantz for war crimes committed during the 2014 Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip.

A civil lawsuit was filed last year, against the former Israeli Chief of Staff Gantz and former Commander of the Air Force Amir Eichel, by Dutch citizen Ismail Ziada, a resident of Gaza’s al-Bureij refugee camp and whose home was bombed by Israeli forces on July 20th, 2014. At the time, Gantz served as the 20th Chief of General Staff of the Israeli army.

In the bombing, Ziada lost his mother, three of his brothers, his sister-in-law, a nephew, and a friend who was visiting the family. Because of the Egyptian-backed Israeli blockade on Gaza, Ziada, who was in the Netherlands at the time, was unable to attend the funeral.

Ziada said, in his case, that Israeli courts do not allow a fair and genuine trial for war crimes, and, so, the case was filed under Dutch law, which upholds the principle of universal trial, in cases of citizens who have been denied access to justice elsewhere. This is the first time that a Palestinian has been able to use civil prosecution for war crimes.

PNN further reports that Gantz and Eichel have asked the court to dismiss the case once and for all. Their lawyers claimed that, as officials in Israel, they could claim immunity unless they acted with intent to cause harm or disregard the possibility of harm. They rejected the allegation that they had committed a war crime, and claim that Ziada had not filed a lawsuit before the Israeli court, so his claims of inaccessibility to Israeli courts were only hypothetical.

In a lawsuit filed against Gantz and Eichel, by attorney Liesbeth Zegveld, it was stated that the bombing of residential houses was  disproportionate and done without taking the necessary precautions, and reflected a pattern of actions taken by senior Israeli officials, during the last military aggression on the Gaza Strip — therefore, these actions are to be classified as war crimes.

The Israeli army described the bombing of Ziada’s house as an air strike on a “building used as a war room” by Hamas, in Bureij.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

Israeli Soldiers Seriously Injure A Young Man Near Ramallah

10 SEP 8:41 AM

Israeli soldiers shot and seriously injured, on Monday afternoon, a young man, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah, after the army attacked youngsters protesting the death of a Palestinian detainee in Israeli prison.

The Palestinian was seriously injured by Israeli army fire, north of al-Biereh city, and was rushed to Palestine Medical Complex, in Ramallah, suffering a life-threatening injury, before he was admitted to surgery.

The soldiers also shot a journalist, identified as Abdul-Rahman Younis, while documenting the protests.

The Israeli attacks took place when dozens of students of Birzeit University marched towards the northern entrance of Ramallah, protesting the death of a detainee, identified as Bassam as-Sayeh, 47, from Nablus, who was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2011, and Leukemia in 2013, but did not receive the needed specialized medical treatment in Israeli prisons.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

MISSING PALESTINIAN MIGRANT FOUND DROWNED IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA

Serbia-Bosnia and Herzegovina borders (QNN)- A Palestinian refugee, identified as Saleh Hamad, from Gaza Strip was found drowned in the Bosnia and Herzegovina river in a village at the borders between Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The body of Hamad had been missing for over 20 days. His body was identified by the representative of the Palestinian Embassy in Serbia by the bracelet he was wearing.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that Palestinian ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Riziq Nimoura, was able today and after a long wait to hold a meeting with the competent authorities of the Bosnian Serbs, where the official authorities there and after matching testimonies and evidence affirmed the death of the young Hamad, whose body was found by the river.

The ministry said it contacted the family of Hamad to coordinate the subsequent arrangements.

Terrifying numbers of Palestinians leave the besieged Gaza enclave through Egypt then the sea trying to escape the hell of the Israeli wars and assaults on the heavy-populated enclave, dreaming of better future. However, many people describe such journeys as escaping death to death.

Israeli media estimated the numbers of migrated Gazans until the half of 2018 to 40,000, however the United Nations estimated them to 20,000 in the same period.

The occupation state has been imposing a very strict siege on Gaza, denying Gazans their right to move and controlling imports and exports. It also launches a war every now and then, killing hundreds and wounding thousands of Palestinians.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

Zionist Israel to hand over body of Palestinian martyr after 5 months seizure

RAMALLAH, PALESTINOW.COM — The Committee of Prisoners and former Prisoners Affairs on Monday said the the Israeli prosecution decided to hand over the body of Omar Abdel Kareem Younes (20 years old) in two weeks at the most.

The committee noted that the Israeli authorities have been seizing the body of the martyr for over 5 months along with the bodies of other four Palestinians, who were murdered in Israeli jails (Aziz Oweisat, Fares Baroud, Nassar Taqatqa, Bassam Sayeh), in addition to dozens of other martyrs.

Omar Younes, from Qalqilya, had passed away at an Israeli hospital one week after Israeli soldiers directly shot him near Za’tara military checkpoint in southern Nablus.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

IOF shot child, detained thirteen Palestinians in West Bank

WEST BANK, PALESTINOW.COM — The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported that Israeli soldiers shot a child, and abducted thirteen Palestinians, after the army invaded many communities, in several parts of the occupied West Bank, on Monday at dawn and during morning hours.

Media sources in Ramallah, in central West Bank, said several army jeeps invaded Beit Rima town, northwest of the city, and shot a Palestinian child with a rubber-coated steel bullet in his neck, after the army attacked local youngsters, protesting the morning invasion into their town.

They added that the soldiers also invaded and ransacked several homes in the town and occupied rooftops.

The soldiers also abducted three children, who remained unidentified at the time of this report, while they were walking to their schools.

In Silwad town, northeast of Ramallah, the soldiers invaded and searched many homes, and abducted Khalil Hasan Hamed, Mousa Yasser Najjar, No’man Saleh Hamed, Mohammad Lutfi Hamed and Mohammad Yasser Hamed.

Furthermore, the soldiers abducted a former political prisoner, identified as Mahmoud Mohammad Shorti, from his home in the al-Mazra’a ash-Sharqiya village, northeast of Ramallah, after invading his home and searching it.

In Jenin in norther northern West Bank, the soldiers abducted Amin Zakarna and Ahmad Yousef Kamil, from their homes in Qabatia town, south of Jenin.

The soldiers also abducted one Palestinian, identified as Malek Eshteyya, from his home in Tal village, west of the northern West Bank city of Nablus.

In Hebron city, in southern West Bank, the soldiers abducted Emad Nairoukh, in addition to Laith Yousef Asafra and Mohammad Jihad Asafra, from their homes in Beit Kahil town, west of the city.

The soldiers also invaded many neighborhoods in Hebron city, and searched homes, in addition to installing roadblocks in Jouret Bahlas area, in its northern part, in addition to the entrances of Halhoul and Sa’ir towns, north and northeast of the city, before stopping and searching dozens of cars, and interrogated scores of Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards.

(Source / 10.09.2019) 

Israeli Forces Detain 18 Palestinians In West Bank, Jerusalem

Israeli forces detained early this morning at least 18 Palestinians from various West Bank districts and East Jerusalem, according to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) and local sources.

PPS said Israeli forces detained five Palestinians from Jenin district in the northern occupied West Bank, in addition to three others, including a 19-year-old, from Qalqilia area.

Two more Palestinians were detained in Ramallah, one in Tubas, and another in Nablus.

In addition, local sources said a 59-year-old man was detained in Hebron in the south of the West Bank.

Five were also detained in Issawiyeh, an East Jerusalem neighborhood.

(Source / 10.09.2019)