PCHR: Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

Summary for January 21-27, 2021

Israeli occupation forces (IOF) continue to commit crimes and violations of varying degrees against the Palestinian civilian population and their properties, including invasions into Palestinian cities which are characterized by the excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians that are mostly conducted after midnight and in the early morning hours.

Additionally, this week witnessed a continued escalation in Israeli settler attacks, mainly stone throwing at civilian houses and vehicles in the West Bank. Also, IOF demolitions of Palestinian homes and properties continued in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem; a wide-scale confiscation and seizure campaign of Palestinian lands was conducted by IOF in the West Bank.

This week, the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 225 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by IOF and Israeli settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
 
IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity:

IOF wounded 9 Palestinians, including a child and a journalist, in excessive use of force against civilians in the West Bank. Atallah Mohammed Rayan (17) was killed by IOF on 26 January 2021 near Kifl Hares village intersection, northern Salfit, after IOF alleged he attempted to stab a soldier. PCHR investigation into the incident indicates that IOF could have controlled the teen using a less lethal force.

Additionally, 4 Palestinians, including journalists, were wounded by IOF in separate incidents during the occupation forces’ incursions into Ramallah and al-Bireh; 3 were wounded in IOF attacks on two peaceful protests in Kufur Qaddoum – Qalqilia; and a child was wounded in IOF incursion into Jenin refugee camp, and another Palestinian was injured in IOF incursion into occupied East Jerusalem.

In the Gaza Strip, two IOF shootings were reported on agricultural lands eastern Khan Younis, and three shooting incidents against fishing boats off Gaza’s northern shore.

 
IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians:

IOF carried out 101 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, inciting fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 97 Palestinians were arrested, including 10 children and 2 women.

In the Gaza Strip, IOF arrested a patient’s companion at Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing.

 
Demolitions:

PCHR documented 14 incidents:

  • Tubas: 2 houses received demolition notices in Kherbet Yerza; a cease-construction notice served to a house in Kherbet al-Meyta. Also, 7 tents and sheep barns dismantled in the northern Jordan valleys; 10,000 forest trees and 300 olive trees destroyed in a 400 dunam plot of land in Kherbet Einon.
  • Salfit: Confiscation decision of 600 dunams from Deir Istiya.
  • Bethlehem: demolition notices to an agricultural room and a water tank in al-Khader village; under-construction house demolished in al-Walaja.
  • Nablus: al-Khan spring demolished and a steel fence in Khan al-Laban; 5 demolition notices served to 4 buildings and a barracks in Asira ash-Shamaliya.
  • Occupied East Jerusalem: 5 establishments demolished, and a land razed in Anata.
  • Hebron: 14 demolition notice served in Khirbet Zanuta; mosque foundations demolished in Kherbet Um Qassa; lavatory dismantled in al-Rakeez village, eastern Yatta.

 
Israeli Settler-attacks:

PCHR fieldworkers reported and documented 16 settler-violence incidents:

  • Ramallah: Palestinian vehicle assaulted near Burqa wounding a 3-year old.
  • Bethlehem: settlers constructed two roads and seized an 800 dunam hill in Baddyet Bethlehem (east); civilian vehicles assaulted on the bypass road between Za’atara and Teqoa and the “Kfar Etzion” settlement junction. Also, 3 dunams were razed in Al-Masara and shepherds were assaulted.
  • Nablus: settler attacks and stone thrown on vehicles near Hawara checkpoint, “Yitzhar” settlement and Burin and in southeastern Nablus. Settlers also attacked civilian houses in Burin and Madama.
  • Qalqilia: civilian vehicles vandalized by Jinsafut entrance.
  • Hebron: settler attacks on vehicles travelling on Bypass Road (60); 100 olive tree seedlings uprooted and shepherds assaulted.
  • Salfit: 100 olive trees damaged in Kafr ad-Dik.

Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:

The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the history of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life.

Meanwhile, IOF continued to divide the West Bank into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation since the Second Intifada and with temporary and permanent checkpoints, where civilian movement is restricted, and they are subject to arrest.

I. Shooting and other Violations of the Right to Life and Bodily Integrity

  • At approximately 04:50 on Thursday, 21 January 2021, IOF moved into al-Bireh city, north of Ramallah, and stationed in al-Balou’ neighborhood. They raided and searched Amal Mo’amer ‘Arabi Nakhlah’s (17) house and arrested him. During which, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and Molotov Cocktails at IOF, who responded with teargas canisters and sound bombs. As a result, journalist, Mohammed Turukman (24) was shot and injured with a rubber bullet in the right shoulder and was taken to Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah for treatment. Also, dozens of civilians suffocated due to teargas inhalation.
  • At approximately 14:15, IOF stationed in military site no. 16 along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, northeast of Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip, opened sporadic fire at Palestinian shepherds who approached the fence, causing fear among them and forcing them to flee. No casualties or material damage were reported.
  • At approximately 20:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, and stationed in ‘Obaid neighborhood, west of the village. IOF established a military checkpoint at the village entrance, searched Palestinian civilians and checked their IDs. During which, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones, Molotov Cocktails and fireworks at IOF, who responded with rubber bullets and heavy teargas canisters; no casualties were reported. IOF arrested Mohammed ‘Aziz ‘Obaid (17) and withdrew later.
  • At approximately 22:30, IOF moved into al-Tur neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, and stationed in al-Nakhla and al-Qa’ neighborhoods. IOF established military checkpoints at the neighborhood entrances, searched Palestinian civilians and checked their IDs. During which, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones, empty bottles and fireworks at IOF, who responded with rubber bullets and heavy teargas canisters; no casualties were reported. IOF arrested Ahmed Marwan Abu Jum’a (21), Ibrahim Nader Abu Hatab (19) and Ibrahim Khaled al- Haniti (18) and withdrew later.
  • At approximately 08:00 on Friday, 22 January 2021, IOF stationed along the Gaza’s border fence with Israel, east of Khan Younis, opened fire at agricultural lands, east of Al-Fukhari village; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 11:00 on Friday, 21 January 2021, a peaceful protest took off in front of Deir Jarir village council, northeast of Ramallah, in the center of the West Bank, towards lands under the threat of confiscation and in protest to the establishment of new settlement outposts in al-Shurfa area, where Israeli settlers set up a tent and a water tank on the village’s agricultural lands. The protestors raised Palestinian flags and chanted slogans against the Israeli occupation and settlers. When the protestors arrived at the area, they found a large number of Israeli soldiers awaiting them. The protestors performed the Friday prayer on the lands under the threat of confiscation while Israeli soldiers surrounding them. Following the Friday prayer, the protestors chanted slogans again against the Israeli occupation and settlers. IOF immediately suppressed the protest and fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the protestors. As a result, dozens of protestors suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot.
  • At approximately 12:30 on Friday, 22 January 2021, IOF stationed at the northern entrance to Kufur Qaddoum village, north of Qalqilia, suppressed a peaceful protest organized by dozens of Palestinian young men. IOF chased Palestinian young men gathered in the area, clashed with them and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at them. As a result, a 22-year-old male was shot with a rubber bullet in his hand, causing fractures in it, and was taken to a hospital for treatment.
  • At approximately 12:30 on Saturday, 23 January 2021, IOF stationed at the northern entrance to Kufur Qaddoum village, north of Qalqilia, suppressed a peaceful protest organized by dozens of Palestinian young men. IOF chased Palestinian young men gathered in the area, clashed with them and fired rubber bullets, sound bombs and teargas canisters at them. As a result, a 20-year-old male was hit with a teargas canister in his elbow and an 18-year-old male was hit with a teargas canister in his back.
  • At approximately 13:30, dozens of Palestinian young men, from Yatta City, along with international and Israeli peace activists organized a peaceful protest at the entrance to Tawameen village, east of Yatta, south of Hebron. The protestors raised Palestinian flags and banners written on them slogans against settlement, and chanted slogans. The protest was organized a day after Israeli settlers’ arrival at caves belonging to Mur family in Tawameen village and damaged its contents. In the meantime, a large number of IOF arrived at the area and fired sound bombs and teargas canisters at them. As a result, many protestors and journalists suffocated due to teargas

IOF also prevented the journalists from photographing, declared the area as a closed-military zone and threatened the protestors to be arrested. Meanwhile, a number of Israeli settlers arrived at the area, cursed the protestors and attempted to beat them. The protestors withdrew from the area while journalists passed through the Bypass road in order to reach Susya village, where their vehicles were parked. While they were on their way, a number of Israeli settlers attacked them and unleashed their dogs towards them, forcing them to flee. As a result, journalist Hamza Hattab (37), a reporter of “Wafa” news agency, sustained bruises in his hand; and journalist Mashhour al-Wahwah, cameraman at“Wafa” news agency, sustained bruises. In the meantime, the settlers gathered and chanted racist slogans against Arabs.

  • At approximately 18:20, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, and off al-Sudaniyia Shore, west of Jabalia refugee camp, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles, opened sporadic fire around them and fired flare bombs in the sky, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 21:50, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, and off al-Sudaniyia Shore, west of Jabalia refugee camp, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3-6 nautical miles, opened sporadic fire around them and fired flare bombs in the sky, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 14:30 on Sunday, 24 January 2021, IOF backed by military vehicles moved into Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah, and closed the village’s main entrance and sub-roads. IOF vehicles stationed in the center of the village, near Deir Abu Mash’al mixed school. Meanwhile, a number of Israeli soldiers stepped out of the vehicles, deployed in the neighborhoods’ entrances, raided and searched several houses, and fired teargas canisters around them. IOF detained Fateh Rezeq Zahran (28) while present in front of his house, handcuffed him, took him to Israeli vehicles, and interrogated him for half an hour before releasing him. During which, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at Israeli soldiers and vehicles.

IOF immediately attacked the protestors, chased them in the village’s neighborhoods and fired live and rubber bullets, teargas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, two protestors were wounded and taken to Palestine Medical Complex for treatment. The wounded were identified as: a 20-year-old male, who was shot and injured with a live bullet in his foot; and a 22-year-old male who was shot and injured with a rubber bullet in his foot. Also, many protestors suffocated due to teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot. IOF also detained at least 25 civilians at the village’s main entrance and prevented them from enter the village. The IOF incursion into the village continued until 17:30. This IOF action came as a collective punishment policy after unknown persons threw stones at a vehicle belonging to a female settler passing through the settlement road “64”, which connects between Deir Abu Mash’al and “Hallamish” settlement.

  • At approximately 09:15 on Monday, 25 January 2021, Israeli gunboats stationed off Waha Shore, northwest of Beit Lahia, and off al-Sudaniyia Shore, west of Jabalia refugee camp, north of the Gaza Strip, chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3-6 nautical miles, opened heavy fire and fired shells around them for an hour, causing fear among the fishermen and forcing them to flee. No casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 16:30, IOF moved into Iraq Burin village, south of Nablus, north of the West Bank. Meanwhile, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at IOF, who responded with teargas canisters to disperse them. As a result, many protestors suffocated to due teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot.
  • At approximately 17:15, IOF moved into Sanur village, south of Jenin, north of the West Bank. Meanwhile, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at IOF, who responded with teargas canisters to disperse them. As a result, many protestors suffocated to due teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot.At approximately 00:30 on Tuesday, 26 January 2021, IOF moved into Tubas city, north of the West Bank. Meanwhile, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at IOF, who responded with teargas canisters to disperse them. As a result, many protestors suffocated to due teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot.At approximately 05:00, IOF moved into Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin, north of the West Bank. Meanwhile, a number of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones at IOF, who responded with teargas canisters, sound bombs and live and rubber bullets to disperse them. As a result, a 16-year-old child was shot and injured with a live bullet in his left thigh and taken to Dr. Khalil Suliman Hospital for treatment. Also, many protestors suffocated to due teargas inhalation and received treatment on the spot. Before IOF withdrawal from the city, they raided and searched several houses, from which they arrested ‘Ali Ahmed ‘Ali ‘Amer (20) , from Jenin refugee camp, and ‘Imran ‘Emad al-Deen Ahmed Saqer (22), from Wad Burqin.On Tuesday, 26 January 2021, IOF killed a Palestinian child on ‘Aber al-Samera Street near Haris village intersection, north of Salfit, under the pretext that he attempted to stab an Israeli female soldier. PCHR’s investigations points out that IOF could have controlled the child by using less lethal force.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 11:30, while the child was walking on ‘Aber al-Samera street, few meters away from the vehicles lane, female and male soldiers were walking in front of him heading to a military checkpoint established on the street, 20 meters away. Verbal altercation erupted between the two soldiers and the child and then developed to a fist fight. Few moments later, a third soldier present in the area intervened and shot the child, wounding him directly. A number of Israeli soldiers gathered around the child who fell on the ground, beat him with gun butts and left him to bleed out without providing first aid until he succumbed to his wounds. Forty minutes later, the soldiers took him via an Israeli ambulance to an unknown destination.

The Israeli spokesperson said that a Palestinian child attempted to stab a female soldier several times before the soldiers neutralized him. It should be noted that Israeli authorities did not publish any video corroborating the incident, despite that there were cameras in the area. It was found later that the victim is ‘Atallah Mohammed Rayan (17), from Qarawat Bani Hassan village, west of Salfit. PCHR’s fieldworker said that Rayan is a senior high school student and he used to head to his father’s marble factory in Rujeib village after returning from school. PCHR points out that IOF could have controlled the child without killing him, and that even if the Israeli claims were true, the child did not pose threat to the lives of the soldiers who could have controlled him, arrested him and used less lethal force against him without killing him and leaving him to bleed out without providing first aid, despite the presence of an Israeli medical crew.At approximately 17:00, IOF backed by military vehicles moved into Qarawat Bani Hassan village, west of Salfit. They raided and searched Rayan’s house and interrogated all the family members. During which, IOF informed Rayan’s family that he attempted to stab a female soldier; Rayan’s family denied having any information about the incident or that their son intended to carry out a stab attack, expressing their shock to what happened to him. During the IOF incursion into the village, Palestinian young men threw stones at IOF and clashes erupted between them. IOF fired rubber bullets and teargas canisters at the young men; no casualties were reported.At approximately 16:00, IOF attacked and severely beat a Palestinian male while present near “Beitar Illit” settlement, which is established on Husan, Nahalin and Wadi_Fukin villages’ lands, southwest of Bethlehem. Eyewitnesses stated that the guards of “Beitar Illit” settlement severely beat Hider Eyad Hider Hamamra (24), from Husan village, while he was at the entrance to the settlement, causing bruises to him. He was taken to a hospital for treatment.At approximately 21:00, IOF moved into Hizma village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, and stationed in the center of the village. IOF raided and searched several shops. During which, Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at IOF, who attacked the protestors, chased them in the eastern neighborhood and fired rubber bullets, teargas canisters and heavy sound bombs at them. As a result, Qusai Hamed Shareef al-Khatib (21), was shot and injured with a live bullet in his foot and was taken to a hospital for treatment.At approximately 16:00 on Wednesday, 27 January 2021, IOF backed by military vehicles moved into Kafr_Malik village, northeast of Ramallah, and stationed in the village’s eastern side. The IOF deployed between civilians’ houses and indiscriminately fired teargas canisters at them. During which, a group of Palestinian young men gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at IOF, who chased the stone-throwers and fired rubber bullets, teargas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, a 20-year-old male was shot with a rubber bullet in his foot and was taken to a medical center in Silwad village. Also, many civilians suffocated due to teargas inhalation. The IOF incursion continued until 19:00; no arrests were reported.

II. Incursions and arrests:

At approximately 01:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Surif, west of Hebron. They raided and searched Abdul Rahman Hazem Hadoush’s (20) house and arrested him.At approximately 02:30, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron and stationed at several neighborhoods in the city. They raided and searched four houses and arrested (4) civilians; Mohammed Maher Bader (59), a member at the dissolved legislative council, Mohannad As’ad al-Tawil (40), Dia’ Hesham Zaheda (34), and Arafat Mohammed al-Qawasmi (38).Around the same time, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Beit Ummar, north of Hebron. They raided and searched Hosny Isma’el Za’aqiq’s (59) house and arrested his two sons Isma’el (25) and Nidal (21).Around the same time, IOF moved into Ya’bad, southwest of Jenin. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Hussain Thabet Ba’jawi (26).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Qabatiya, southeast of Jenin. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohammed As’ad Nazzal (22).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Aqabat Jabr refugee camp. Southwest of Jericho. They raided and searched Mahmoud Arafat Jalaita’s (29) house and arrested him. Meanwhile, IOF arrested Ahmed Bassam al-Mimi (18), while present in al-Quds street in the southern entrance of the camp.At approximately 04:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Kobar, north of Ramallah governorate. They raided and searched three houses in al-Tahta neighborhood and arrested (3) civilians; Jameel Mohammed Daraghmeh (38), Naseem Abdul Salam al-Barghouthi (25), and Mohye Wissam al-Barghouthi (24). Meanwhile, another IOF stormed Ali Waheed al-Barghouthi’s house in the center of the village, opened fire at the windows and doors of the house and threw sound bombs inside it, then they severely beaten and arrested his son, Alaa’ (27).

Alaa’s mother said to PCHR’s fieldworker that:

“While I was sleeping, I heard the Israeli soldiers using loud speakers calling my husband by saying “Ali, get out of your house”, they kept calling him for 30 minutes without storming the house, so my son Alaa and I went to open the door. As soon as we opened the door, the Israeli soldiers came in, caught, and handcuffed Alaa and started beating him with their riffles’ butts and detained him out of the house. And then, one of the soldiers ordered me to wake up my daughters, but I told him to let them sleep, so he said: “If you are worried about your daughters, get them out of the house in 3 minutes,” and then he threw a sound bomb inside the house, so I ran out of the house with my daughters, and they were very scared. My daughter, Mira (7), was running barefoot while she was crying all the way until we arrived at my mother in law’s house, next to ours. We kept looking at our house, and saw the Israeli soldiers beating Alaa nonstop, noting that Alaa was ill a few day ago, and the doctors told him that he better gets rest to recover. However, the soldiers ordered us to get out of the houses, and one of them confiscated the mobile phone of my 17-years-old daughter, investigated with Alaa and asked him about his father, Alaa replied that his father is at work. Immediately, they stormed and searched the house thoroughly and damaged its contents and opened fire at the walls and the windows. In the end, they threatened me while I was trying to give Alaa a jacket because it was cold outside and he was not feeling well, but they refused and arrested him two hours after the raid.”

At approximately 15:00, IOF moved into al-‘Isawiya village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Ayoub Baha’i Obaid’s (29) house and arrested him, and handed his brother, Roshdi (24), a summons for interrogation by the Israeli Intelligence Services.At approximately 16:00, IOF moved into Beit Hanina, north of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Fatema Khader’s (65) house and took her to al-Qishleh police center and released her after several hours of investigation on conditions that ban her entry to the Al-Aqsa Mosque for one week and ordered her to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services for interrogation.At approximately 23:30, IOF established a temporary military checkpoint at the entrance of Izbat al-Tabib village, east of Qalqilia, and arrested Shaddad Hisham Odwan (25), from Azzun, east of Qalqilia.IOF carried out two incursions in al-Shuyukh and Beit Ula villages in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.

At approximately 01:05, IOF moved into Asira al- Shamaliya, north of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Amjad Afif Sawalmah (30) and his brother Ali (29).At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into al-Isawiya, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Majd al-Dein Maher Fhaidat’s (15) house and arrested him. It should be noted that Fhaidat is suffering heart issues, and he underwent open-heart surgery since years, and he needs continued medical follow-up. Furthermore, Fhaidat’s father was a former prisoner and he died inside the Israeli prisons in 2005 due to medical negligence.At approximately 14:30, IOF arrested Majed Ragheb al-Jo’ba (40), while present near al-Sahera Gate “Herod’s Gate”, one of the occupied East Jerusalem’s gates. IOF took him to al-Bareed police center in Salah al-Dein street. It should be noted that al-Jo’ba is a former prisoner who spent 7-years in the Israeli prisons on charge of belonging to Hamas Movement, and his activities within the Aqsa Youth Group. Furthermore, IOF banned al-Jo’ba from entering Jerusalem and the West Bank for 6-months in 2018, and allowed him to present only in the occupied territories of 1948 and Eizariya, east of Jerusalem, and renewed that decision several times for separated periods, summonsed him and threatened of taking serious actions against him.

At approximately 05:10, IOF moved into Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mo’taz Ziyad Saba’na (21).

At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Hebron and stationed in several neighborhoods. They raided and searched several houses and handed six civilians summonses to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion”, south of Bethlehem. The civilians are: Ahmed Yaser al-Sharbati (40), Anas Sidqi al-Jo’ba (39), Mohameed Redwan al-Hashlamoun (41), Yousef Othman Salhab (38), Yazan Emad Nairoukh (27), and Taleb Mahmoud al-Dwaik (36).At approximately 01:15, IOF moved into Qabatia, southeast of Jenin, and stationed at Jabal al-Damuni area. They surrounded a Hyundai vehicle and arrested 3 civilians inside it, bombed the vehicle and took them to an unknown destination. The arrestees are: Ahmed Hasan Abu al-Rab (26), Jehad Abu al-Rab (24), and Majdi Kmeil (25).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Mohammed Ra’fat Deiriya’s (15) house and arrested him.At approximately 05:00, Israeli Infantry Unit stormed and searched Mohammed Mostafa al-Jamal’s (38) house, in the southern side of Hebron’s Old City, and arrested him.In the morning hours, IOF stormed Dome of the Rock Mosque, in the Aqsa Mosque, in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They prevented the restoration works inside it for the second consecutive day. The Islamic Endowments (Waqf) Department in Jerusalem stated that IOF banned the restoration crew from continuing their duty inside the Dome of the Rock Mosque, as they started restoring the ground two weeks ago. The Supreme Islamic Council in Jerusalem said in a statement that the Israeli police interrupted all the restoration works in the Aqsa Mosque, took photos of ID Cards of the workers and technicians, banned them from working in the Mosque and threatened them of arresting if they attempted to continue their work in the Mosque. They added, the Israeli police is working on stopping all the activities and works of the Construction Committee in the Aqsa Mosque, and prevented the restoration works in places that need immediate restoration. Also, the Israeli Authorities prevented the entry of the most basic materials needed for restoration, as they were left unable to do their restoration or maintenance duties in the Mosque facilities, in addition to their employees who are exposed to prosecution or threats of arrest or banishment.At approximately 12:30, IOF moved into the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Saber Mohammed Abu Nab’s (16) house, severely beaten and arrested him.At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Ameer Khaled al-Malki’s (18) house and arrested him.At approximately 14:20, IOF arrested (4) children while present near the entrance of Beit Ijza village, northwest of the occupied East Jerusalem, and took them to unknown destinations. The arrestees are: Majd Ramadan Abu Kafia (10), Mo’tasem Ahmed Ghareeb (9), Mohammed Saleem Ghareeb (10), and Aysar Mousa Salem (10).At approximately 15:30, IOF arrested Mohammed Hisham al-Bashiti (46), while present in Bab al-Asbat “Lions’ Gate” area, one of the Aqsa Mosque’s Gates in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. It should be noted that the Israeli Authorities are attacking the family of Mohammed al-Bashiti, in order to pressurize them to leave their house which overlooks the Mosque, as al-Bashiti family stated that the Israeli Authorities wanted to desperate us to take our house. Mohammed al-Bashiti’s sons are always exposed to arrests and attacks, as his elder son, Hisham (20), was arrested for the first time when he was 13, and now he is under arrest on charge of throwing stones. Referring to the second son, Hatem (18), he was arrested and summonsed dozens of times with his younger brother Abdul Rahman (16), who was arrested up to 20-times last year, despite of suffering of diabetes.IOF carried out two incursions in Sa’ir and al-Mowreq villages in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Dheisha refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohannad Fahmi Qawar (24), his brother Rani (19), and Adham Jamal Farraj (29).At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into al-Tur neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Mohammed Hatem Abu al-Hawa’s (18) house and arrested him.At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Kafr Ni’ma village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians; Mohammed Sayed Abu ‘Adi (47), Mohammed Nabil Abdo (20), and Mohammed Naji Abdo (22).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Beitunia, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched Ahmed Noah Hreish’s (31) house and arrested him.Around the same time, IOF moved into Anata village, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched Mohammed Mahdi al-Rashq’s (21) house and arrested him.At approximately 04:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Birzeit, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched Tha’er Abdul Raheem Washha’s (41) house and arrested him.Around the same time, IOF moved into Beit Rima, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched Omar Jameel al-Rimawi’s (23) house and arrested him.At approximately 11:00, IOF stationed at Beit Hanoun “Erez” checkpoint, arrested a man while accompanying his wife, who is a brain cancer patient.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 08:00, Walaa Mohammed Mostafa al-Refa’i (35), married with 3 children from al-Maghazi camp, headed to Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing with his wife Walaa Nabil Mahmoud al-Refa’i (33), who has a brain tumor. Mrs. Al-Refa’i has a scheduled surgery at al-Maqassed Hospital. At approximately 11:00, an Israeli soldier took Mr. Al-Refa’i for investigation, while the patient remained waiting in the hall. At 16:30, the Israeli soldier ordered Mrs. Al-Refa’i to travel alone or to return to the Gaza Strip. She told the Israeli soldiers that she was going to have a brain surgery and could not go alone; she was instructed to have her companion replaced by someone else. Mrs. Al-Refa’i’s mother joined her and they went to al-Maqassed Hospital in occupied East Jerusalem. At approximately 19:00, Mr. al-Refa’i phoned his wife and told her that he is detained by Israeli authorities and was taken to Ashkelon Prison.At approximately 13:00, IOF arrested Sherin Khalil al-A’raj (49), from al-Walaja village, northwest of Bethlehem, while present near the Magistrate Court in the occupied East Jerusalem. IOF took her to “Petah Tikva” investigation center, and extended her arrest for 7-days, and prevented her from meeting her lawyer. It should be noted that al-A’raj is living out of oPt, and she is a UN employee for more than 15 years and hold UN travel documents. Noting that the Israeli Authorities banned al-A’raj from entering Palestine for 5 years, and she was summonsed and arrested when she came to visit the West Bank to spend the vacation with her family.At approximately 19:00, IOF moved into Ras al-Amud neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Haitham Hisham al-‘Abbasi’s (30) house and handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services in al-Maskoubiya police Center in West Jerusalem.At approximately 22:00, IOF stationed at Shu’afat refugee camp’s military checkpoint, arrested Fadi Zakaria Kashur (32) and Hussam Naser Yaghmour (28), while passing through the checkpoint.

At approximately 01:00, IOF moved into Shu’afat refugee camp, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched dozens of houses and arrested (9) civilians, claiming that they were throwing stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers. The arrestees are: Mo’taz Jaradat, Yazan Saya’ra, Bara’ Saya’ra, Hamza Jaradat, Mahmoud Alqam, Hamido Alqam, Yasine Taha, Qotaiba Farhan, and Mohammed Farroukh.At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Balata refugee camp, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mohammed Abdul Kareem Hashash (20).At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Nur Shams refugee camp in Tulkarm, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Fadi Nizar Jab’awi (24) and Oday Issam Qasem (23).Around the same time, IOF moved into Eizariya village, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Nizar Eyad Bassa (22) and Hussam Mohammed Far’oun (18) and arrested them.At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Qalqilya, north of the West Bank, and stationed in the center of the city. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (3) civilians; Abdullah Zuhair Walwil (30), Abdul Rahman Belal Hijjawi (20), and Qasem Abdul Raheem Nazzal (35).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Marah Rabah village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched Qusai Hani Taqatqa’s (16) house and arrested him.At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into Silwan, south of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Ahmed Jameel al-Silwadi’s (18) house and arrested him.At approximately 09:00, IOF arrested Yazan Emad Nairoukh (27), from Hebron, after referring to the Israeli Intelligence Services in “Gush Etzion” settlement, south of Bethlehem. Nairoukh received a summons when IOF raided his house in the previous day.At approximately 14:00, IOF handed Samed Asila (51), Head of al-Aqsa Mosque Night Guards, a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Services. Lately, the Israeli police increased bothering the Aqsa Mosque’s guards and Islamic Endowments (Waqf) Department’s employees.At approximately 14:00, IOF moved into the African Community Quarter, near al-Majlis Gate, one of the Aqsa Mosque’s Gates in the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Jehad Naser Qaws’s (26) house and took him to one of the investigation centers in the city. It should be noted that Qaws was arrested three times during this month.At approximately 20:10, IOF moved into Qalqilya, north of the West Bank, and stationed in the middle of the city. They chased a group of young men claiming that they were throwing stones at the Israeli soldiers in the southern checkpoint area. Later, IOF arrested ‘Asef Azzam Owda (16).At approximately 22:00, IOF moved into al-Tur neighborhood, east of the occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched Khalil Atta Abu al-Hawa’s (18) house and arrested him.IOF carried out (4) incursions in Tayasir, east of Tubas; Beit Ummar, Halhul, and al-Shuyukh villages in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.

At approximately 01:30, IOF moved into Wadi Shaheen area in Bethlehem. They raided and searched Ameer Sameer Tabanja’s (21) house and arrested him.At approximately 02:00, IOF moved into Hizma, northeast of the occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (5) civilians; Owda al-Khateeb (24), Osama Ali al-Khateeb (29), Adel Issam al-Khateeb (19), Mos’ab Abdul Rahman al-Khateeb (27), and Nadeem Abdul Hameed al-Khateeb (26).Around the same time, IOF moved into Sebastia, northwest of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Ayham Nahed Aqel (22).At approximately 02:20, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Birzeit, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Majdi Naser Washha (27) and Mohannad Najeeb Saif (24) and arrested them.At approximately 02:30, IOF moved into Madama, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Thabet Nassar Ezzat Nassar (43).At approximately 03:00, IOF moved into Tammun, southeast of Nablus, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Mostafa Hussain Bani Owda (25).At approximately 03:30, IOF moved into Qabatiya southeast of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Tareq Ziyad Abu al-Rab (20), and Anwar Nidal Saba’na (22).At approximately 03:45, IOF moved into Burqin village, west of Jenin, north of the West Bank. They raided and searched several houses and arrested Ghassan Mohammed Ali Shalamish (41), along with his sons; Haitham (18) and Eyad (15).At approximately 04:00, IOF reinforced with several military vehicles moved into Yatta, south of Hebron governorate. They raided and searched two houses and arrested Nizar Mohammed Nawaj’a (33), working at the Palestinian Intelligence Services, and Issa Ali al-Najjar (36).At approximately 15:30, IOF stationed at Mevo Dotan checkpoint, southwest of Jenin, arrested Mostafa Faisal Zakarna (20), from Qabatiya, southeast of Jenin. IOF took him to an unknown destination.IOF carried out (7) incursions in Tubas, Zububa, west of Jenin; Ramallah, Beitunia, and Silwad in Ramallah governorate; Fawwar refugee camp and Beit Ummar in Hebron governorate. No arrests were reported.

III. Settlement Expansion and settler violence in the occupied West Banka. Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property

Summary for January 21-27, 2021

Israeli occupation forces (IOF) continue to commit crimes and violations of varying degrees against the Palestinian civilian population and their properties, including invasions into Palestinian cities which are characterized by the excessive use of force, assault, abuse and attacks on civilians that are mostly conducted after midnight and in the early morning hours.

Additionally, this week witnessed a continued escalation in Israeli settler attacks, mainly stone throwing at civilian houses and vehicles in the West Bank. Also, IOF demolitions of Palestinian homes and properties continued in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem; a wide-scale confiscation and seizure campaign of Palestinian lands was conducted by IOF in the West Bank.

This week, the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 225 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by IOF and Israeli settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
 
IOF shooting and violation of right to bodily integrity:

IOF wounded 9 Palestinians, including a child and a journalist, in excessive use of force against civilians in the West Bank. Atallah Mohammed Rayan (17) was killed by IOF on 26 January 2021 near Kifl Hares village intersection, northern Salfit, after IOF alleged he attempted to stab a soldier. PCHR investigation into the incident indicates that IOF could have controlled the teen using a less lethal force.

Additionally, 4 Palestinians, including journalists, were wounded by IOF in separate incidents during the occupation forces’ incursions into Ramallah and al-Bireh; 3 were wounded in IOF attacks on two peaceful protests in Kufur Qaddoum – Qalqilia; and a child was wounded in IOF incursion into Jenin refugee camp, and another Palestinian was injured in IOF incursion into occupied East Jerusalem.

In the Gaza Strip, two IOF shootings were reported on agricultural lands eastern Khan Younis, and three shooting incidents against fishing boats off Gaza’s northern shore.

 
IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians:

IOF carried out 101 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, inciting fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 97 Palestinians were arrested, including 10 children and 2 women.

In the Gaza Strip, IOF arrested a patient’s companion at Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing.

 
Demolitions:

PCHR documented 14 incidents:

  • Tubas: 2 houses received demolition notices in Kherbet Yerza; a cease-construction notice served to a house in Kherbet al-Meyta. Also, 7 tents and sheep barns dismantled in the northern Jordan valleys; 10,000 forest trees and 300 olive trees destroyed in a 400 dunam plot of land in Kherbet Einon.
  • Salfit: Confiscation decision of 600 dunams from Deir Istiya.
  • Bethlehem: demolition notices to an agricultural room and a water tank in al-Khader village; under-construction house demolished in al-Walaja.
  • Nablus: al-Khan spring demolished and a steel fence in Khan al-Laban; 5 demolition notices served to 4 buildings and a barracks in Asira ash-Shamaliya.
  • Occupied East Jerusalem: 5 establishments demolished, and a land razed in Anata.
  • Hebron: 14 demolition notice served in Khirbet Zanuta; mosque foundations demolished in Kherbet Um Qassa; lavatory dismantled in al-Rakeez village, eastern Yatta.

 
Israeli Settler-attacks:

PCHR fieldworkers reported and documented 16 settler-violence incidents:

  • Ramallah: Palestinian vehicle assaulted near Burqa wounding a 3-year old.
  • Bethlehem: settlers constructed two roads and seized an 800 dunam hill in Baddyet Bethlehem (east); civilian vehicles assaulted on the bypass road between Za’atara and Teqoa and the “Kfar Etzion” settlement junction. Also, 3 dunams were razed in Al-Masara and shepherds were assaulted.
  • Nablus: settler attacks and stone thrown on vehicles near Hawara checkpoint, “Yitzhar” settlement and Burin and in southeastern Nablus. Settlers also attacked civilian houses in Burin and Madama.
  • Qalqilia: civilian vehicles vandalized by Jinsafut entrance.
  • Hebron: settler attacks on vehicles travelling on Bypass Road (60); 100 olive tree seedlings uprooted and shepherds assaulted.
  • Salfit: 100 olive trees damaged in Kafr ad-Dik.

Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:

The Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the history of the Israeli occupation of the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods, humanitarian conditions and bearing catastrophic consequences on all aspects of life.

Meanwhile, IOF continued to divide the West Bank into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation since the Second Intifada and with temporary and permanent checkpoints, where civilian movement is restricted, and they are subject to arrest.

At approximately 10:30 On Sunday, 24 January 2021, IOF accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration SUV moved into Kherbet Yerza in the Northern Jordan Valley in eastern Tubas, north of the West Bank. The Civil Administration officers handed 2 notices for 96 hours regarding 2 houses belonging to Rami and Hafiz Na’im Hafiz Masa’id.On the same day, the Israeli authorities declared on its Civil Administration website that they will confiscate 600 dunums from the agricultural lands of Deir Istiya village, north of Salfit, in favor of Karnei Shomron and Immanuel settlements, west of the village.

According to the Israeli authorities’ announcement, they will change the agricultural lands into industrial lands regarding Immanuel settlement and confiscate the lands of nature resorts, yards, and services in favor of settlement residential units in Area C, settlement area in al-Bala’ah neighborhood, and Khelet al-Karsone. The lands that will be confiscated in favor of Immanuel settlement are around 300 dunums belonging to Mahmoud ‘Abed Mahmoud ‘Afounah and his siblings; Yousif al-Haj Dawoud Jadallah; and ‘Abdullah Abu Salem Hazeem. Also, 300 other dunums will be confiscated from Deir Istiya village in favor of Karnei Shomron belonging to ‘Abdel Rahman Qaddourah ‘Ali; ‘Abdel Fattah Mahmoud Mansour; and Ahmed Mustafa ‘Issa Abu Hajlah.

It should be noted that the Israeli authorities gave the mentioned civilians 60 days to challenge the decision; they were only able to begin legal proceedings.On Sunday evening, 24 January 2021, IOF notified to demolish an agricultural room and a water tank in al-Khader village, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of unlicensed construction. Hasan Breijiyeh, Director of Colonization and Wall Resistance Commission, said that IOF notified to demolish an agricultural room belonging to Ibrahim Soliman Salah in Wad al-Shami area, west of the village, under the pretext of unlicensed construction. Breijiyeh added that IOF notified also to destroy a water tank used by the farmers in the area.At approximately 06:30 on Monday, 25 January 2021, IOF accompanied with an Israeli Administration SUV, a bulldozer and crane moved into al-Lubban ash-Sharqiya village, southeast of Nablus. IOF surrounded Khan al-Lubban, which is an ottoman caravansary located in the eastern side of the village. The bulldozer destroyed al-Khan Spring and a 40-meter iron fence and confiscated it. IOF also destroyed and confiscated 2 steel gates of al-Khan gates along with a mobile bathroom belonging to Khaled al-Daraghmah, who lives in al-Khan as well, to expel him and seize control of al-Khan.At approximately 08:00, IOF accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration moved into Kherbet al-Mayetah in the Northern Jordan Valley, east of Tubas. The Civil Administration officer handed a notice to stop construction works in an under-construction house belonging to Khaled ‘Ali Salamah al-Faqir from al-Kherbeh. IOF took photos of the civilian houses there and notified 2 residential rooms belonging to ‘Adnan ‘Abdel Mahdi Ghayyad al-Salamin in Zeraa’ ‘Awwad Community in the Northern Jordan Valley under the pretext of illegal construction in Area C.At approximately 09:00, IOF demolished 5 facilities and levelled a plot of land in ‘Anata village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of unlicensed construction.

Mayor of ‘Anata village, Taha al-Refa’ie, said that IOF accompanied with bulldozers moved into Marj al-‘Anati area in the village and started destroying a fence belonging to Waleed ‘Aref al-‘Ajaleen and another belonging to ‘Alaa’ Abu Shames in addition to a barrack used as a store belonging to ‘Abdel Baqi Helweh and another one of 200 sqm used as a horses stable belonging to Samer al-Natshah. Al-Refa’ie added that before their withdrawal, IOF demolished a barrack belonging to Mohammed Ibrahim Helwah and levelled the land surrounding a gas station belonging to Amin Ja’afrah near the village entrance.At approximately 10:30, IOF accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration SUV moved into al-Sarih area and Khelet al-Lahham near the northern entrance to ‘Asirah village, northwest of Nablus. The Civil Administration officer handed 5 demolition notices for 4 buildings and a barrack in the area under the pretext of illegal construction in Area C.

The persons affected were:

At Approximately 10:30 on Monday, 25 January 2021, IOF demolished an under construction house in al-Walaja village, northwest of Bethlehem, under the pretext of unlicensed construction.

Khader al-A’araj, Head of Al-Walajah Village Council, said that IOF moved into Khelet al-Samak, northwest of the village, and demolished a 2-storey under-construction house built on an area of 190 sqm belonging to Mohammed ‘Abdul Latif Jayousi, from Jerusalem. Al-A’araj added that following the demolition, clashes erupted in the area between the village young men and Israeli soldiers, who heavily fired rubber bullets and teargas canisters; as a result, the protesters suffocated due to teargas inhalation. IOF also arrested Nabil Ahmed al-Teen (16) and severely beat him.At approximately 11:00 on Monday, 25 January 2021, IOF backed by a military vehicle and accompanied with an Israeli Civil Administration vehicle moved into Kherbet Zanuta, west of ad-Dhahiriya village and located 20 kilometers south of Hebron. The Civil Administration officer distributed 14 demolition notices under the pretext of unlicensed construction in Area C. Nearby localities include ad-Dhahiriya to the northwest and Khirbet Shweika to the northwest, as well as two Israeli settlements, “Teneh Omarim” to the west and “Shim’a” to the east. The Meitarim industrial zone just to its east was built for the settlers. The village has a population of 70 citizens, who live in rooms built of tin plates, stones, and clay and in caves.

At approximately 10:45 on Tuesday, 26 January 2021, IOF accompanied with 3 Israeli Civil Administration SUVs and other vehicles with workers and an excavator, moved into Khirbat Al-Burj in the Northern Jordan Valley, east of Tubas. The workers immediately dismantled tents and sheep barns belonging to 5 Palestinian families and confiscated them. Afterwards, IOF headed to Hamamat al-Maleh in the Northern Jordan Valleys, east of Tubas, north of the West Bank. IOF uprooted and confiscated 2 tents; one was residential and the other was used for sheep.

Each tent was 60 sqms and belonged to Burhan ‘Ali Zamel Daraghmah.

At approximately 05:00 on Wednesday, 27 January 2021m IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into Kherbet Um Qussa, east of Yatta city, south of Hebron. IOF deployed in the area and demolished a 120-square-meter floor and concrete columns built in August 2018 to establish a mosque in the area. It should be noted that the Israeli Civil Administration officers handed Palestinian civilians military orders to demolish the mosque on 25 January 2021, under the pretext of non-licensing.At approximately 08:00, IOF accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers and environmental and nature crews moved into Kherbet ‘Aynoun, east of Tubas. Israeli soldiers cut and damaged 10 thousand forest trees and 300 olive trees planted 8 years ago in 400 dunams. These trees were planted within a project funded by the Brazilian Consulate.At approximately 11:00, IOF backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with Israeli Civil Administration officers moved into al-Rakiz village, east of Yatta City. The Israeli Civil Administration officers dismantled and confiscated a two-square-meter lavatory belonging to Mohammed Hasan Abu ‘Arram (44), under the pretext of non-licensing in Area “C”.

b. Settler attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property

On Thursday morning, 21 January 2021, Israeli settlers from “Nickodem” settlement established on the eastern lands of Bethlehem, moved into a hill in eastern Badia of Bethlehem after making two roads to reach it in order to seize control over it.

Hasan Breijiyeh, Director of the Colonization and Wall Resistance Commission in Bethlehem said that the hill that was stormed by settlers is 800 dunams and extend to the Dead Sea belonging to the family of al-Zawahrah. Breijiyeh added that the settlers moved into the hill with their cars on the same day morning under IOF’s protection after making 2 dirt roads to reach it. Breijiyeh added that this crowned a series of measures taken by the settlers over months in the area, including recurrent raids and making roads and other measures that were all under the very eyes of the IOF and their protection, encouraging settlers to seize more Palestinian lands. Breijiyeh also said that the owners of the hill have papers proving their ownership of it and that they have not received any confiscation notices in this regard.

He explained that the plan to seize the hill is an official one supported by the Israeli government and settlement organizations who fund the settlers as part of a huge Israeli settlement project connected with other projects established in the Jordan Valleys. Breijiyeh pointed out that if the hill was seized, the Israeli organizations would have the eastern Badia area under their control in Kisan and al-Rashayidah villages in addition to Jeb al-Theeb village, which is around thousands of uninhabited dunums but planted with different trees. Breijiyeh said that those who seize this area call themselves “Hilltop Youth”, who have a long history in seizing mountains and hills across the West Bank.At approximately 20:00, settlers gathered at the crossroads of Huwara checkpoint, “Yitzahar” settlement, Burin village and Shilo traffic lights, southeast of Nablus. The settlers rioted the streets and threw stones at the Palestinian vehicles crossing the crossroads.At approximately 20:30, a group of settlers from “Yitzahar” settlement established on the southeastern lands of Nablus, north of the West Bank, attacked the Palestinian vehicles traveling on Ramallah-Nablus Road near Burin village intersection and broke the windshield of a car belonging to ‘Abdel Karim Idris ‘Odah, from Huwara village.Around the same time, a group of settlers attacked near Burqa village, northeast of Ramallah in central West Bank a Palestinian car driven by Hanin Walid Sawaftah (26) and accompanied by her husband ‘Alaa Ihsan Sawaftah (36) and her 2 children, Jad (3) and Majd (6), from Ramallah. They were on their way to Tubas to visit their family in the city. As a result, Jad was injured in the head and taken to the Palestine Medical Complex for treatment.

‘Alaa Sawaftah said to PCHR’s fieldworker:

“At approximately 20:30 on the same day, I was with my wife Hanin Walid Sawaftah who was driving the car along with our kids Jad and Majd. We were on our way out of Ramallah heading to Tubas to visit our family, taking Burqa village road, northeast of Ramallah. When we approached the village, we were surprised with settlers gathering at the village intersection and throwing stones at our vehicle. As a result, a stone hit the window next to my wife and another in the back side window, breaking the glass and wounding Jad’s face.

Many stones also fell on the car before my wife could drive away to DCO Checkpoint at the western entrance to Ramallah, where there were Israeli soldiers and police. My wife stopped at the checkpoint and told them what happened. The Israeli police brought a paramedic who gave us first aid and then called a Palestinian ambulance. My child and I got in the ambulance while my wife came in the car to the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah, where we were all checked by the doctors, but Jad sustained cuts in the face and was treated. We left the hospital home in Ramallah.”At approximately 20:30, dozens of Israeli settlers protested on the bypass road between Za’atarah and Teqoa villages, east of Bethlehem, and threw stones at the civilians. Eyewitnesses said that the settlers were under the protection of IOF and closed the bypass road in front of the Palestinian cars. They threw stones at the civilian cars and caused damage to some of them.At approximately 21:00, dozens of Israeli settlers at Kfar Etzion settlement’s intersection, south of Bethlehem, for the fifth consecutive week. Eyewitnesses said that the settlers were under the protection of IOF and raised slogans demanding Arabs to leave. They closed the main street in front of the Palestinian cars and threw stones at the civilian cars, causing damage to some of them.At approximately 22:00, a group of settlers gathered at Jinsafut village, east of Qalqilya, and threw stones at the Palestinian vehicles. As a result, the windshield and side window of a car belonging to Mohammed Mahmoud ‘Abdel Karim Yousif were broken. The settlers also threw stones at the houses belonging to Falah Mohammed Bashir and ‘Alaa Mohammed Bashir, breaking the house windows. The settlers also punctured wheels of a car belonging to Khaled ‘Abdel Rahman Bashir.At approximately 17:00 on Friday, 22 January 2021, dozens of settlers from “Karmei Tzur” settlement established on the confiscated Palestinian lands, north of Halhoul, north of Hebron, gathered on Bypass Road (60) leading to Hebron. The settlers threw stones at the Palestinian vehicles and obstructed their movement. No injuries were reported.At approximately 20:00, a group of settlers gathered on Bypass Road (60) leading to the southern entrance to Hebron near “Beit Hagai” settlement and stopped the Palestinian vehicles. They obstructed their movement and chanted slogans against Arabs. During which, IOF closed the road, forcing the Palestinian drivers to take the internal roads for fear of settlers.On Saturday, 23 January 2021, Israeli settlers under the protection of IOF levelled vacant areas of land in al-Mo’asara village, south of Bethlehem, to make an Israeli settlement road connecting “Migdal Oz” settlement with “Efrat” settlement established on Bethlehem lands.

Hasan Breijiyeh, Director of the Settlement and Colonization Resistance Commission in Bethlehem, said that the Israeli authorities levelled a 3-dunum land belonging to Soliman Mousa Breijiyeh near “Migdal Oz” settlement on Beit Fajjar village lands near al-Ma’asara village, south of Bethlehem. They started establishing a new settlement road connecting “Migdal Oz” settlement with “Efrat” settlement. The landowner, Soliman Breijiyeh, said that he was surprised with the Israeli settlers’ moving into the area on the same day morning.

They levelled a land near the “Migdal Oz” settlement. Breijiyeh added that he went to the Israeli police in “Beitar Illit” settlement and them to the police in “Etzion” settlement attempting to stop the settlers’ attack on his land. However, the Israeli police did not receive his complaint, forcing him to stay in his land to prevent settlers from building the settlement road through his land. Breijiyeh said that despite having papers proving ownership of the land, the IOF have always prevented him from approaching or exploiting his land under the pretext
of being located near the settlement.At approximately 15:00, a group of settlers from the “Price Tag” groups made their way from “Yitzahar” settlement established on Madma village, southeast of Nablus, and attacked the southeastern outskirts of the village. They threw stones at a house belonging to Mashhour Mohammed Qot, but no casualties were reported.At approximately 16:00, a group of settlers from the “Price Tag” groups made their way from “‘Arousa” settlement outpost established on the eastern Burin village lands, southeast of Nablus, attacked the eastern outskirts of the village and threw stones at a house belonging to Ibrahim ‘Adel ‘Eid, but no casualties were reported.On the same day, a group of settlers from the “Protectors of Mountains” group damaged 100 olive trees in a land belonging to Jamal ‘Ali Ahmed in Kafr ad-Dik village in Salfit.

Jamal Ahmed said to PCHR’s fieldworker that:

“At approximately 10:00, I received a phone call from a friend in the village telling me that he saw the olive trees in my land destroyed and the land damaged. I headed there immediately in Hriket al-‘Aweinah area in Thaher Subh Mount, north of Kafr Ad-Dik village in Salfit, I found the olive trees (around 100) destroyed. I own 50 dunums in the area; 18 of them were attacked. I have filed many cases before the Israeli courts in this regard since the 1990’s, and no final ruling has been issued so far to expel us from the land; however, a previous decision was issued by the Supreme Court in ‘Ofer in 1990 saying this land is a private property but in vain because the settlers continued to carry out their almost weekly attacks in the area. These settlers call themselves the “Protectors of Moutnains”. They riot lands, damage and break trees. I bought these 100 seedlings 6 years ago and they cost me 50 shekels for each. The rest of the trees were damaged by settlers previously and are useless now.”

At approximately 09:00 on Monday, 25 January 2021, settlers attacked shepherds and prevent them from herding sheep in the area surrounding their settlements established on Kisan village lands, east of Bethlehem. According to Ahmed Ghazal, Head of Kisan village Council, said that “Ibei HaNahal” settlers threw stones at the shepherds from Kisan village, wounding Khalaf ‘Abayat after a stone hit him. The settlers used their dogs to attack the sheep and prevented shepherds from herding sheep in the lands surrounding the village near their settlement established on the Palestinian lands. Ghazal added that the settlers’ attacks against the shepherds in Kisan recently escalated in addition to seizing vacant areas of lands and demolishing barracks.On the same morning, a group of settlers from “Kiryat Arba” settlement established on confiscated Palestinian lands moved into eastern Hebron. Settlers uprooted about 100 olive seedlings planted one year ago from a 25-dunum land belonging to Aref Mohammad Omar Jaber (44) in al-Baqa’a area next to the aforementioned settlement. It is noteworthy that around two months ago, settlers built a room of bricks and wood on the aforementioned civilian’s land in an attempt to seize it. Jaber filed several complaints before the Israeli police about the recurrent attacks of settlers on his land.At approximately 10:00, a group of settlers from “Ma’on” settlement established on the confiscated Palestinian lands in eastern Yatta, south of Hebron, attacked shepherds while herding their sheep in Sedet al-Tha’lah area, forcing them to leave the land. The Israeli authorities declared the area as a state property and started establishing settlement roads to reach the agricultural projects established by settlers there.

(Source / 29.01.2021)

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