Two Israeli settlers shot dead in south Hebron

Israeli forces have spread out in Hebron as they search for the Palestinian who shot two settlers and escaped from the scene

Palestinian protesters kick flaming tyres towards Israeli soldiers during clashes following the funeral of five Palestinians who were killed by Israeli security forces in Hebron, the West Bank on 31 October 2015

Two Israeli settlers were shot and killed by a Palestinian attacker on Friday afternoon as they drove through the southern Hebron Hills.

A third person was critically wounded and transferred to the Soroka Medical Centre in Beersheba.

The incident occurred near the Israeli Othniel settlement.

Israeli paramedics Magen David Adom (MDA) initially identified the victims as a man and a woman, both in their 50s.

However, it emerged later that the two people killed were a father in his 40s and his son, 18. The two were in the car with five other family members.

Photo of the car belonging to the settlers who were shot dead in southern Hebron

Israeli forces rushed to the scene and spread out in the area to search for the attacker, who escaped from the scene. Checkpoints were set up and cars with Palestinian licence plates were searched.

The Israeli army closed all entrances and roads leading to the site of the attack, including the entrances to the nearby al-Fawwar refugee camp, and the towns of Dura and al-Dhahiriya.

According to Israeli media, the Palestinian exited his vehicle and shot the settlers before returning to his car and driving away. Helicopters are in the air scanning for his whereabouts.

The killings came as a Palestinian man was killed by the Israeli army during clashes in the West Bank city of Halhul, some five kilometres north of Hebron.

Medical sources told Palestinian news site Maan that 23-year-old university student Hassan Jihad Albu was killed by a bullet straight to the chest, which penetrated his heart and killed him instantly.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Soldiers Assault Nonviolent Protesters In Jerusalem

Palestinian medical sources in Jerusalem have reported Friday that Israeli soldiers assaulted dozens of nonviolent protesters marching in Jabal al-Mokabber, in occupied Jerusalem, causing dozens to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation. The Palestinians marched demanding Israel to transfer the bodies of eleven slain Palestinians.

Jeruzalem

The Palestinians are also demanding Israel to end its deadly siege on their neighborhoods and communities, in different parts of occupied Jerusalem, after the army blockaded them with concrete blocks, and dozens of roadblocks.

They are also demanding the Israeli Authorities to allow the transfer the remains of ten Palestinians from Jerusalem, who were killed by the army in previous attacks, and to void the orders for the destruction of their families’ homes, as such measures are collective punishment, illegal under International Law and the Fourth Geneva Conventions.

Adnan Gheith, Fateh Secretary in Occupied Jerusalem, said the Palestinians have the right to bury their dead in proper ceremonies, and will not stand idle while Israel continues to demolish homes, and destroy the lives of entire families.

Gheith added that the Palestinians would always oppose and resist all attacks and invasions into the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and warned that ongoing violations and provocative tours by Israeli fanatics and soldiers into Al-Aqsa, will only lead to further clashes and tension.

The slain Palestinians Israel is still refusing to transfer their remains are:

1. Mustafa al-Khatib, Jabal al-Mokabber – killed on October 12, 2015.
2. Baha ‘Oleyyan, Jabal al-Mokabber – Killed on October 13, 2015.
3. Ala’ Abu Jamal, Jabal al-Mokabber – Killed on October 13, 2015.
4. Mo’taz ‘Oweisat, Jabal al-Mokabber – Killed on October 17, 2015.
5. Ahmad Abu Sha’ban, Ras al-Amoud – Killed on October, 15, 2015.
6. Tha’er Abu Ghazala, Kafr ‘Aqab – Killed on October 8, 2015.
7. Mohammad Ali, Shu’fat refugee camp – Killed on October 10, 2015.
8. Ishaq Badran, Kafr ‘Aqab – Killed on October 10, 2015.
9. Hasan Manasra, Beit Hanina – Killed on October 12, 2015.
10. Ahmad Qneibi, Kafr ‘Aqeb – Killed on October 30, 2015.

It is worth mentioning that the illegal Israeli blockade on Palestinian neighborhood and towns, in occupied Jerusalem, has also led to the death of aPalestinian man, who suffered a heart attack, and an elderly woman, who suffered respiratory issues, after Palestinian ambulances were unable to reach them in time.

Jeruzalem1

(Source / 13.11.2015)

200 injuries in violent clashes in the West Bank

RAMALLAH, (PIC)– Over 200 Palestinians were injured by Israeli gunfire and tear gas in violent clashes that broke out in Ramallah and Bireh, Jerusalem, al-Khalil, Nablus, Bethlehem, Qalqilya and Tulkarem on Wednesday.

Palestinian medical sources have recorded, until 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, 30 injuries by Israeli live bullets, 85 by rubber bullets, 70 injuries due to suffocation by tear gas, and 20 injuries due to falling down as a result of being chased by Israeli soldiers.

The injuries included a Palestinian youngster who was shot by a live bullet in the chest in Ramallah. His condition is very serious.

Since the beginning of October, 2015, the number of injuries that were treated by the Palestinian Red Crescent has reached 9,536 including 8,593 in the West Bank and Occupied Jerusalem, and  943 in Gaza Strip.
(Source / 13.11.2015)

Fresh Saudi aerial attacks claim more lives in Yemen

Smoke billows following an airstrike by the Saudi Arabia on the Nuqom mountain overlooking in the Yemeni capital Sana'a on October 15, 2015. (AFP)

Smoke billows following an airstrike by the Saudi Arabia on the Nuqom mountain overlooking in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on October 15, 2015

More people have lost their lives in Yemen as Saudi Arabia launches fresh air raids against the impoverished Arab nation in defiance of calls for ending the deadly offensive.

At least two Yemenis were killed and three others were reported injured in Saudi air raids on Harad district in Hajjah province on Friday.

Saudi warplanes also targeted a number of localities in Hidan district of northern Sa’ada province.

Meanwhile, Yemen’s Ansarullah fighters have also seized a large depot of Saudi ammunition in southwestern province of Ta’izz.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has recently said that it has been appalled by the continuing Saudi strikes on the impoverished country’s healthcare facilities.

“The neutrality of healthcare facilities and staff is not being respected,” said Kedir Awol Omar, the deputy head of the ICRC delegation in Yemen, on its website Tuesday, adding, “Health facilities are deliberately attacked and surgical and medical supplies are also being blocked from reaching hospitals in areas under siege.”

The relentless bombardment of the impoverished nation, which started on March 26, without any international mandate, has been meant to undermine Ansarullah and restore power to the fugitive former Yemeni president and a major ally of Riyadh, Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.

A Yemeni man stands next to the ruins of buildings destroyed in an airstrike in the country’s capital, Sana’a, on October 28, 2015

Over 7,100 people have been killed and more than a million have been displaced since the Saudi aggression began, with militant groups, either al-Qaeda-related or those linked with Hadi, targeting civilians and security forces.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

AOHR calls for int’l action to curb Israel’s extrajudicial killing of civilians

LONDON, (PIC)– The Arab Organization for Human Rights (AOHR) has appealed to the international community to move to put an end to Israel’s extrajudicial killings against the Palestinians.

In a statement on its website, the AOHR accused Israel of violating the rules of the international law, which prohibit any kind of assault on medical facilities and demand their protection at all times.

It said that Israel’s use of lethal force against unarmed patients and civilians inside hospitals and medical centers forces many others to leave without receiving or completing their treatment, which poses a threat to their lives.

The organization urged the Palestinian Authority to deploy special protection units at hospitals and in their vicinity to prevent any future break-ins by Israeli military and security forces.

“It is unacceptable that six security apparatuses stand by with their hands folded towards the crimes that are committed by the occupation against medical facilities and citizens,” AOHR underlined.

An Israeli death squad believed to be from a secret police unit entered al-Ahli hospital in al-Khalil at an early hour Thursday after pretending to be Arabs and kidnapped Azzam Shalaldeh, who was bedridden in the surgical ward, and killed his cousin Abdullah in cold blood.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Israel prepares to deploy more troops in West Bank, costing $77mn

Four battalions had already been called up to deploy to the West Bank, but Israel prepares to send more as violence continues

Israeli troops during clashes with Palestinian protesters on the outskirts of Ramallah this week

In anticipation of continuing clashes between Palestinians and Israelis, the Israeli government is preparing to deploy around 70 reserve battalions in the West Bank next year, Israeli daily Haaretz reported.

The cost of deploying these battalions is reportedly estimated to be $77 million.

Four of the battalions had already received orders to deploy to the West Bank this coming January, but the army’s general staff is working under the assumption that violence will continue for “many months”, Haaretz reported.

Additional troops will be needed to relieve regular troops who have scheduled training.

This is not the first time that the Israeli army called up reservists. On 14 October, 1,400 border guard reservists were called up in Jerusalem, with 850 of them deployed in an attempt to quell the rising violence.

Earlier this week, Israeli security service Shin Bet published a report profiling the alleged perpetrators of recent attacks.

Many Palestinians suspected of committing attacks have been dubbed as “the Oslo generation” with birth dates after the end of the First Intifada and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority under Oslo.

It found that their motive is “a feeling of national, economic and personal oppression, as well as personal or psychological problems,” Haaretz quoted the report as saying.

Military Intelligence chief Herzl Helevi told the Israeli cabinet that Palestinians feel they have nothing left to lose.

However, Haaretz points out, government officials have contended that the current violence, at least from the Palestinian side, is focused on destroying Israel with no relation to the peace process.

Human rights organisations have accused the Israeli army of adopting a shoot-to-kill policy, saying that in some cases, the targeting and shooting of Palestinians amounted to executions.

Since the beginning of October until now, 85 Palestinians have been killed, with thousands more injured. Ten Israelis have been killed.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Torture and humiliation of minors in Jafon prison

RAMALLAH, (PIC)– The number of detained minors and children in the Israeli Jafon prison has risen to 62 prisoners, suffering from torture and humiliation, which has become the routine method practiced by the Israeli security forces against prisoners without taking into account their age.

The Palestinian Prisoner Society’s lawyer, Fawaz Alshalodi, after visiting the prison on Tuesday, said that the majority of the prisoners languishing in it have been tortured with beating, severe beating, obscene insults and other methods of torture.

The PPS statement added that the prison, which has been opened last October due to the increase in arrest cases among children and minors, is still not ready to receive the security prisoners, as the prison’s administration deals with them as criminal prisoners and did not allow an adult prisoner to represent and guide minor prisoners as is the case in other prisons.

The minors confirmed that the prison’s administration storms the section from time to time, searches their belongings, beat them up, and imposes sanctions on them such as isolation, tying them to beds, and imposition of fines.

They also complained of the poor quality and quantity of food provided to them which they often refuse to eat, in addition to the lack of winter clothes and hot water. The prison administration also refuses to convert those who are ill to the clinic for medical tests or to provide them with treatment. Besides, some of them are deprived of family visits or communicating with their relatives on the phone.

In the same context, the lawyer documented a number of minor Jerusalemites prisoners’ testimonies who were tortured from the moment of their arrest, including captive Mufeed Ziad Saeeda, 16, who was severely beaten during his arrest and interrogation process, in addition to forcing him to sit in a squat position with his face toward the wall for three successive hours during which he was repeatedly slapped on the back of the neck.

The captive added that after being transferred to the Maskobiye detention center, he wanted to sleep as he was suffering from severe fatigue after the torture he was exposed to; the jailers threw him on the floor of the cell, beat him, and strip-searched him. He pointed out that he was also beaten after being transferred to Jafon prison.

Minor Alaa Ibrahim Obaid, 17, was arrested by the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) from a football field and was beaten all over his body. Then when he demanded one of his parents be present with him in the interrogation according to the law, his request was rejected, and he was beaten again. The prisoner added that all that was accompanied by obscene insults.

The captives Ahmed Khalil Rowedi, 17, and Mohammed Wael Abu Shama, 16, said that the IOF assaulted them with beating and obscene insults throughout the process of arrest and interrogation.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Spanish court issues arrest warrant for Israeli PM Netanyahu

The Spanish judge issues arrest warrants for seven key Israeli officials in Mavi Marmara incident

A Spanish court has found Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and six other senior officials guilty of crimes against humanity for their role in the 2010 raid on Gaza-bound aid ship, Mavi Marmara.

Nine activists were killed, including one Turkish-American, and dozens injured when Israeli commandos boarded the lead ship of a Gaza-bound flotilla, Mavi Marmara, when it attempted to breach the blockade of the Palestinian territory. Spanish activists were also on board the ships.

The Madrid-based Supreme Court has ordered arrest of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, ex-foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman, ex-defense minister Ehud Barak, then-deputy PMs Moshe Ya’alon and Eli Yishai, and then-state minister Benny Begin. Israel’s ex-Navy Commander Eliezer Marom is among the co-defendants found guilty by the Spanish judge.

An investigation was launched after Spanish activists on board Mavi Marmara filed a criminal complaint against Isareli officials involved in the raid. Earlier in June, a Spanish court dropped a five-year-old investigation into the raid. In its ruling, it left a possibility that the case could be re-opened if he came ever to Spain. But, it did not clarify what steps would be taken if he did.

The case file was eventually sent to the Supreme Court, while the investigation has made slow progress due to Israel’s pressure on the investigation. The judge has sent the list of defendants to the Spanish police, demanding the start of the legal process to request a red notice for their arrest.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Israel responsible for Lebanon’s troubles: Emile Lahoud

Lahoud

Press TV has conducted an interview with Emile Lahoud, the former president of Lebanon, to discuss Israel’s role in the ongoing tension in Lebanon. The following transcript is the first of the two parts of the interview:

Press TV: I have already spoken to Amine Gemayel and Michel Aoun, you know how they interpret Lebanese politics but I would call you the voice of reason, a person who does not have conflict of interest, so maybe you can tell me what is going on in Lebanon. Why is it that we do not have an effective government, as we speak?

Lahoud: Well as you said now I am not in politics but I can tell you of my experience who 18 years – nine years as commander-in-chief and nine years as President – and when you are out of politics, you see the whole scene, you are not involved.

So I can tell you all our troubles in Lebanon have been since the creation of Israel in 48. [They] started at the time when the Israeli state was created and we had refugees coming to Lebanon and this later as you know we had troubles in Lebanon and meanwhile Israel who thinks twice about Lebanon because it is anti-Lebanon – as you know Lebanon is made out of 18 different sects of religion whereas Israel wants to have the state as a Jewish state – and since then the trouble started.

In summary, all our troubles come from Israel through the US because it has a lot of influence in electing the President of US and always I give an example George Bush, the father, who had been through all the important positions in the US, he became Senator, he was governor, he was head of the CIA, he was ambassador to the UN and then vice president and President, because the last year of his tenure, the first term, he did not give money to the Israeli army – at the time I remember ten billion dollars – and he was ousted in the second term whereas his son who his mother says about him that she was surprised he was elected because she was thinking  about another son, Jeb, and she said I do not think he will be up to it, well he was elected twice because he was helping Israel.

So the influence of Israel comes through the lobby they have in the US which they affect the election of the president and when something happens in the Middle East, Israel tells the Americans. Americans because of their AWACS the Saudis and the [Persian] Gulf [states] must do whatever they want so whatever they tell them they do and the Saudis and the [Persian] Gulf [states], they have the fanatic, the Takfiri [ideology], etc. and they tell them. So there is an indirect relation between the Takfiris and the Israelis.

And why I am saying that? Israel through this influence they have and I call it always it is the “aircraft carrier of the US in the Middle East”, it has everything for Israel – I mean to have the influence, the gas, the petrol, etc. So what is happening, the Israelis do not want to have stability in Lebanon. So through proxies – US, France, the West, etc. – they influence the Lebanese and they want to keep it on a confessional differences between the Lebanese so that they become weak, like we had they call it “the Spring Democracy”.

Well they have been trying to keep Lebanon with an election law that is very confessional whereas from my experience I found out that the problem of Lebanon will be solved very easily in changing only the law of the elections. Why? Because the member of parliament now must talk about his own sect of religion to be re-elected, whereas if you make Lebanon, and all Lebanon is four million people, I always give an example a small department in any other country where elections can take place very easily [for] four million people, they make it one circumspection so that the west will need the east of Lebanon, north of Lebanon needs Beirut, etc. so they talk national and when Lebanon talks national it is very strong.

Another reason that we have these troubles is that – I give myself as an example always, because it happened with me – is the corruption in Lebanon. When I was elected, I did not know any Saudi Arabians and I did not know even Syrians or anybody. All my studies were in the US and I am naval engineer, I was all my education in London. But when I arrived here, the first day I arrived, whenever there were problems – it has just started the resistance in Lebanon – the US ambassador would phone me – I was just appointed commander-in-chief and say why these terrorist are making trouble with the Israelis? So I would say, at the time they were occupying our land, so as a Lebanese I am the commander-in-chief of a national army, I have to help these Lebanese to regain their land. Let the Israelis go out, then we will talk and he did not like that.

At the same time, the first week I was elected, I was surprised when the President of the Republic tells me to come and see him and I see in his office and this is something I said on televisions all over since 20 years but nobody listens why as you know the West has got a lot of media and they can show whatever they want. We do not have the media needed, so what happens – and this is very important, why corruption in Lebanon – is that the Saudis did not know me, suddenly I found the ex-head of the intelligence bureau in Lebanon, colonel Johnny Abdo, who was at the time I became ambassador of Lebanon in France with a suitcase on the table, he opened it in the presence of the President of the Republic. He says, ‘look general, this money since 82, I was nominated in 89, so seven years have passed, Sheikh … brings half a million dollars cash every month, not year, to the commander-in-chief and all commanders since 83, because many were changed since 83 until I was nominated, they get half a million dollar per month.’

So I thought he wanted to help the army, I said, ‘very nicely, why don’t you give it to the government and the government puts it in the money of the army like the public money the army gets and we spend it on the army?’ so he says, ‘No. you must understand this money is to buy the officers to bring them to your side so that you have most of these soldiers with you.’ So I said, ‘how these officers and soldiers will fight and are ready to die for their land if they get money every month and I get the rest of the money?’ and I stood up and I said, ‘I do not want that.’  So the President said,’ I told you, he is mad’ – because they had known my mentality before – ‘ so give it to me.’ and the President of the Republic at the time … who was taking every month half a million dollars cash for himself to spend like he wants.

Why I am saying that? If they tried with me as commander and later when I became President, some other Arab countries came and said, ‘Okay, this is five million.’ I remember when came with a suitcase … the week I was elected as President. These are things that happen. Why I am telling you, just to tell you why there is no state in Lebanon.

Press TV: So it was not only Saudi Arabia?

Lahoud: Other Arab countries as well and I remember very well Johnny Abdo as well at the time he said and these Arab countries, but now you are elected President, why are you afraid. Because they thought I was afraid to take the money because I wanted to become President.

No. they do not believe that it is my duty not to take this money and when they told me that I asked for the commander of the Republican Guard and he said what are you doing, he said he will put you in prison, they ran away and what I am saying, that if the commander-in-chief in Lebanon who they do not know, they tried to bribe him with half a million dollars a month, and then the President of the Republic with half a million dollars a month plus, because I knew that after me, the next President, he was asking from Qatar and help me in that and that because I do not have money. It is not true. The state has money to make for example with finding excuses to make barracks for soldiers but the money is there in the state. But no, they would take in the name of the barracks and put them in their pocket.

So what I am saying that if the commander takes and the President, I mean they tried to bribe the commander and they tried to bribe the President, so in between you have members of parliament, you have ministers, you have Prime Ministers, you have speakers of the House, so I think like they tried the commander and the President, they tried the others and I remember on television the guy that was asking me the question, he said, ‘why don’t they come up on television and say  the same thing?’ I said because all of them were bribed and they cannot talk about it.

Why I am saying that? Because whenever there is an important matter to be solved in Lebanon, the people that are paying them will tell them, ‘look, you are getting every month, you want me to tell the world that you were being bribed?’ so they make blackmail.

Press TV: So they are doing it right now as well, the Saudis are still bribing top Lebanese politicians, as we speak?

Lahoud: Sure. If they did not know me, they tried in 89 and then later when I was President until I left 18 years, but when I became president I stopped the money because the money was arriving to some offices as well and I remember very well the first meeting I had been one month in office, the President of the Republic who knew that I refused the money and he was taking it but he was trying to play politics, I remember at midnight he woke me up and said they are asking you to come to the council of ministers. At the time the council of ministers was still in western Beirut because the army was divided for one year until we went to … where we made the united command and I arrived at midnight and I did not know because at the time Walid Jumblatt was not still friendly with Hariri, Hariri at the very beginning, the end of 89, beginning of 90, because he was not getting the money at the time but later they became very friends, so you can find why they became friends.

Anyway, so the President I remember all the ministers were witnesses, they were there. He asked me like this. He said, ‘commander-in-chief, we are asking you in the middle of the night because Walid Jumblatt is saying that there are some officers in the army that used to take money from outside their salary. What do you say?’ And he knew very well a month before what happened but he thought I would be afraid because the President was asking. I said, ‘yes, there were officers and I stopped that.’ And he said, ‘why don’t you put them in prison?’ I said, ‘you know very well President that they pay cash and you were a witness,’ in front of all the ministers.  And I had been at the time on the two-months nominated as commander.

What I want to say in summary, Israel by their proxies – America, France, some western countries, they have a lot of power in the world, Saudi Arabia, the [Persian] Gulf states, etc. they want to keep Lebanon in corruption and in confessionalism because they do not allow them to have an election law.

And because of that I say now they say the most important thing is to elect the President. Even if they bring the best President, he will not be able to do anything with such a parliament. You say what is the solution, I said it may times, you make all Lebanon one  … and so that for example the … as they call them or the Christians say but the Muslims are more, so they take our seats, they keep the same number of seats for each confession. For example now there are 35 Maronites in the 128 member parliament, they will keep 35 but they will be elected by all Lebanon not the Christians elected by Christians and every time he is elected, the Christian member of parliament, he will say I brought to the Christians, he will not say I  brought to the Lebanese. And that is why during our tenure we were talking national though the parliament was not national but we could make a national army because we were not saying Maronite. I am proud to be a Maronite but I am a Maronite in my church not in the state. In the state I am here when I am responsible for the good of the people not for the good of myself and my family and this is very important that the people know the corruption started there and most of our politicians are being bribed by every month until now they get money. Some of them changed their policy, they are not anymore with them but they still get the money and they get from other places. You cannot build a state with corruption and confessionalism.

Press TV: I was asking Amine Gemayel who killed your son Pierre; he said I do not know, it is still being investigated. Then I asked Michel Aoun who do you think killed Amine Gemayel’s son? Michel Aoun says that he sees Israel as the prime suspect in this, all the assassinations – Rafic Hariri, Pierre Gemayel and many others. Who do you think is killing these people in Lebanon?

Lahoud: That is another reason just to prove to you that the corruption and confessionalism are brought from Israel and when it does not work, they declare war on Lebanon. We had it. They were occupying our land for 28 years and then in 2000 because we united a national army so we could defend the back of the resistance and we won on Israel. In 2006 we won on Israel and when they cannot do anything, they go to assassinations.

I can tell you when the assassination of Hariri happened, the first week I had an international media that came to Lebanon, I still have the interview. The first thing he said it was …, the French, I mean all over the world and it was all direct. He told me is that, exactly and the world was watching a week after the killing of Hariri, he said all the world says that you and President of Syria killed Hariri. What do you have to say? He said why are you so surprised? I said, ‘do you have a proof?’ he said no. I said when you do not have a proof, you see who benefits most. I said Hariri did whatever we wanted. He asked me to make my term longer three years and he came and elected that and during that time, it is all written, he said Hariri we are going through very difficult times and we have to have a strong President. And only two days ago before his killing his son went, I remember it was a Saturday evening, he came, Saad Hariri to Faraya in the mountain, there was snow, two days before he was killed with Prince Abdul Aziz bin Fahd at the time he was the most influential in Saudi Arabia, his father Fahd was the King and they said we did not want to take from your time in the office. We came here just to say hello and invite you for dinner and we like to be together. I said no, I will invite you to dinner. Maybe next week we will talk about it and Saad at the time said my father sends his best and he is in Beirut. I said can I talk to him? He said just now he will call you and he called me and things were going fine.

So he said who? I said the enemies of Lebanon killed him. He said how? I said because they want to change the resistance and they are against the resistance, the Israelis. With me being President, they cannot so they want to make something very big so that there is turmoil in Lebanon and like this they can change the power in Lebanon. That is what they did. And he said how can Israel do it? I am saying 2005. I said the same thing I just told you. I said Israel talks to the US, US to Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabia to the fundamentalists, extremists and they might have done it but the idea comes from there.

Press TV: So you see an Israeli-American-Saudi alliance behind the killing of Rafic Hariri?

Lahoud: It could be. I am saying if you do not have any proof, you look for who benefits the most. Israel benefits the most and the other countries do what Israel wants in the Middle East. And the proof is that now ten years have passed, nobody knows who killed him. Why? Because the satellite that was watching over the area where he was being killed was US and Israeli and both of them, the US says at that time ‘it was not working’. The Israelis say we do not want to give you any news. And all they are doing now just asking. First they accused us, they found there is nothing. They accused the officers that were responsible of security, put them in prison for years and they let them out because they are innocent. Third, they accused Syria, it did not work. Now they are accusing Hezbollah but who benefits most?  So the same thing with all the killings in Lebanon whether it is Pierre Gemayel and you know very well he was a very good politician and the others and I can tell you that whenever Israel cannot do anything it works with confessionalism, indirect because they do not pay, they have the Saudis and the [Persian] Gulf [states] paying and if it does not work it is killing.

(Source / 13.11.2015)

Israel/OPT: Investigate apparent extrajudicial execution at Hebron hospital

Hebron ziekenhuis

The killing of a 28-year-old Palestinian man by Israeli forces during a raid on al-Ahli hospital in Hebron in the early hours of Thursday morning may amount to an extrajudicial execution, Amnesty International said today.

Eyewitnesses report that a large group of Israeli soldiers and police entered the hospital at 2.43am disguised as Palestinian civilians, with some wearing keffiyehs and fake beards and another being pushed in a wheelchair dressed as a pregnant woman. According to two witnesses Amnesty International spoke to, they entered a room on the third floor of the hospital where 20-year-old Azzam Azmi Shalaldah was a patient, to arrest him on suspicion of stabbing an Israeli civilian on 25 October.

When they entered the room where the patient was in bed, they immediately shot his cousin, Abdullah Azzam Shalaldah, at least three times, including in the head and upper body.

“The fact that Abdullah Shalaldah was shot in the head and upper body suggests this was an extrajudicial execution, adding to a disturbing pattern of similar recent incidents by Israeli forces in the West Bank which warrant urgent investigation,” said Philip Luther, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Amnesty International.

“Israeli forces must immediately cease their use of intentional lethal force against people who are not posing an imminent threat to life.”

The fact that Abdullah Shalaldah was shot in the head and upper body suggests this was an extrajudicial execution, adding to a disturbing pattern of similar recent incidents by Israeli forces in the West Bank which warrant urgent investigation
Philip Luther, Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International

A witness said that Abdullah Shalaldah, who had been accompanying his cousin in the hospital and sleeping in the room, had gone to the bathroom and had just come out when Israeli forces burst into the room and shot him. The Israeli forces then threatened another patient at gunpoint, handcuffed another relative to a bed and then left the hospital with Azzam Shalaldah in a wheelchair.

Unlawful and deliberate killings carried out by order of government or military officials, or with their complicity or acquiescence, amount to extrajudicial executions, which are prohibited at all times and are crimes under international law.

The Israeli military released a statement saying that Abdullah Shalaldah had attacked Israeli forces, but did not specify whether he was armed. Witnesses report that he was not armed, was some metres away from the soldiers and police and had not attempted to attack them. There was no attempt to arrest Abdullah Shalaldah, according to the witnesses, or to use non-lethal alternatives before shooting him dead.

The killing of Abdullah Shalaldah is the latest in a pattern of killings by Israeli forces which Amnesty International considers to have been unlawful. Since the beginning of October there has been a dramatic increase in the number of attacks by Palestinians on Israeli civilians, soldiers and police. Attacks on civilians are never justified, but Israeli forces have responded with intentional lethal use of force in many cases where it was not warranted. The Israeli military’s own regulations allow soldiers in the occupied West Bank to open fire only when their lives are in imminent danger. It appears that this was not the case in the shooting of Abdullah Shalaldah, as he was unarmed.

Israeli forces have killed at least 18 Palestinians in and around the city of Hebron in recent weeks, including in cases that appear to be extrajudicial executions, and accordingly should be the subject of prompt, thorough and impartial investigations with a view to prosecution as criminal offences.

On 6 November Israeli forces shot and killed 72-year-old Tharwat al-Sharawi, alleging that she intended to ram them with her car. A video of the incident shows the car which she was driving heading towards the soldiers at a speed slow enough to allow the soldiers to jump out of the way and then begin shooting heavily at the car. Tharwat al-Sharawi’s son has said that his mother was on her way to lunch when she was killed. Amnesty International considers that even if Tharwat-al-Sharami did intend to carry out a ramming attack, the military has itself acknowledged that soldiers only began firing after jumping out of the way of the car. This means that the imminent danger had passed and accordingly that the use of lethal force was unlawful.

On 29 October Mahdi al-Muhtasib, 23, was shot by Israeli forces after reportedly lightly wounding an Israeli soldier in a stabbing attack in Hebron. Video of the aftermath of the incident shows Mahdi al-Muhtasib writhing in pain on the ground before an Israeli soldier, standing a distance of some metres away, shoots him again. The video shows that Mahdi al-Muhtasib was plainly wounded, and posed no threat whatsoever to the soldier. Moreover, shooting a wounded person is a wilful killing in grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

“Israeli forces have a long history of carrying out unlawful killings in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including extrajudicial executions,” said Philip Luther.

“While the number of attacks by Palestinians on Israeli civilians, soldiers and police has increased significantly since the beginning of October, there is never any excuse for the Israeli military and police forces using lethal force where it is not warranted.”

(Source / 13.11.2015)