Updated: “Israeli Mines Responsible for Three Palestinian Fishermen Killed In Khan Younis”

Update: March 14th

The Hamas-led Interior Ministry in Gaza released the results of its investigation into the deaths of the three fishermen off the coast of Gaza near Khan Younis. The Ministry collected evidence, and based their investigation on three possibilities:

  1. That the boat was hit by a misfire from resistance fighters in training
  2. That the Israeli navy targeted and fired at the boat
  3. That the boat struck an unexploded mine in the water

The investigators went to the training site of the al-Qassam Brigades and checked the surveillance video and the distance range of each of the rockets there. Knowing the range of the rockets, and checking forensic and video evidence, the investigators ruled out this possibility.

By collecting testimonies from the fishermen and the Palestinian naval police, and by collecting recordings from surveillance cameras, it became clear that the Israeli navy did not fire missiles at the boats.

The investigation committee concluded that this explosion was tied to a previous incident, which took place on February 22nd in Khan Younis sea, near the location where the explosion took place in the boat.

During this incident, the Israeli Navy used Quad Cpter drones to drop floating bombs in the sea. These bombs carry powerful explosives, and are like ‘landmines’ on the sea in that the impact is usually on innocents.

After collecting all evidence from the explosion site in the sea, and after receiving into custody the destroyed boat and nets, the investigators concluded:

  1. Nearly 30 minutes before the explosion took place, two fishermen found an Israeli quad copter drone stuck in their nets near the location of the explosion. They managed to remove it and give it to the Palestinian naval police.
  2. The remains of another quad copter drone was found stuck in the nets of the three slain fishermen, after the divers collected the wreckage.
  3. The investigators found the backside of the boat and other parts of the boat, and concluded that the explosion took place under the right side of the boat.
  4. By comparing the quad copter that was found by the fishermen to the remains of the quad copter found in the wreckage of the exploded boat, the two were of similar make.
  5. Forensics experts found that the fishermen were killed by the explosive shock and shrapnel was not found in their bodies.
  6. Following all of the evidence, the investigators concluded that Israel is fully responsible for the deaths of the three fishermen on March 7th in Khan Younis Sea.

The Ministry called on national, international, legal and human rights groups to take a stand and call for an end to Israel’s continued violations against the Palestinian people and their humanity.

UpdateMar 7, 2021 21:45The Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Hamas movement, said it launched an investigation into the incident and vowed to reveal the outcome to the public soon.

In a brief statement, the brigades said the Palestinian security forces of the Interior Ministry are part of this investigation.

“We express our sincere condolences to the families of Mohammad Hijazi Saleh Lahham, Zakariya Hijazi Saleh Lahham, and Yahia Mustafa Saleh Lahham,” the brigades said, “We will investigate this painful incident and will reveal the whole truth as soon as possible.”

Updated From:
Three Palestinian Fishermen Killed In Khan Younis
Mar 7, 2021, at 12:54

The Palestinian Fishermen Syndicate has reported that three fishermen were killed, and one was seriously injured, near Khan Younis in the southern part of the besieged Gaza Strip, due to an explosion in their boat. The Israeli army said it has nothing to do with the incident.

The Syndicate’s Secretary Nizar Ayyash said the fishermen were apparently killed due to a shell that struck their boat, and added that one fisherman was seriously injured, the Watar Broadcast Network has reported.

Medical sources said the three fishermen have been identified as Mohammad Hijazi Lahham, 27, his brother Zakariya Hijazi Lahham, 24, and their cousin Yahia Mustafa Lahham, 29, . One other fisherman from the same family was seriously injured in the incident.

The Al-Aqsa Radio in Gaza said a shell struck the boat, killing the three fishermen and wounding another.

On its part, the government-run Palestinian News & Info Agency (WAFA) responded to an inquiry by the IMEMC and stated that the fishermen’s death was a result of an explosion caused by a homemade shell that accidentally struck their boat.

The explosion occurred not long after the Israeli navy attacked fishing boats with live fire and water cannons.

The Interior Ministry in Gaza said it initiated an investigation into the incident.

In a statement issued by the Israeli army on its official Twitter account, the spokesperson denied any relation to the incident, and added: “our indications show that their deaths were caused by an explosion inside Gaza.”

Also Sunday, the soldiers stationed on military towers and in armored vehicles across the perimeter fence, fired many live rounds at Palestinian farmers and shepherds, east of Khan Younis.

The farmers and the shepherds had to leave their lands in fear of further Israeli military violations.

The attack is part of the numerous and ongoing Israeli violations targeting the Palestinian farmersshepherds, and fishermen in the Gaza Strip.

These attacks have led to dozens of casualties, including fatalities, in addition to the abduction of many farmers, shepherds, and fishermen.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Army Demolishes Three Rooms Near Bethlehem

Israeli soldiers invaded, Monday, Beit Ta’mar village, east of Bethlehem, south of the occupied Palestinian capital, Jerusalem, in the West Bank, and demolished three agricultural rooms.

Hasan Breijiyya, the head of the Bethlehem office of the “Wall & Colonization Resistance Commission,” said the soldiers demolished three agricultural rooms owned by a Palestinian from the Mahameed family on their land.

He added that the rooms are in Dababa area in Beit Ta’mar, and are used to store agricultural equipment.

Breijiyya and said Israel is alleging the structures were built without a permit from the “Civil Administration Office,” the administrative branch of the illegal Israeli occupation.

It is worth mentioning that the army has recently escalation the demolition of rooms and sheds in Bethlehem, especially in Beit Ta’mar, in addition to the towns of al-Khader and al-Walaja.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Soldiers Shoot A Palestinian Worker Near Qalqilia

Israeli soldiers shot, on Sunday at dawn, a Palestinian worker near the illegal annexation wall, near the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia.

Local sources said the worker was among many Palestinians who were trying to cross through a breach in the illegal Annexation Wall, on their way to work.

They added that the soldiers fired many live rounds and gas bombs at the Palestinian workers, wounding one with a bullet.

The injured Palestinian has been identified as Ibrahim Hamayel from Beita town, southwest of Nablus, in northern West Bank.

The incident is part of a series of Israeli violations and attacks targeting Palestinian workers, and farmers, on lands near the illegal Annexation Wall in Qalqilia, Jenin, and several other parts of the occupied West Bank.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

PPS: “Israeli Soldiers Abduct Twenty Palestinians In West Bank”

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported that Israeli soldiers abducted, overnight until dawn hours Monday, twenty Palestinians, and assaulted at least three, including a child, in several parts of the occupied West Bank.

The PPS said the soldiers invaded Shu’fat refugee camp, in the occupied Palestinian capital, Jerusalem, and assaulted three Palestinians, including a child, before abducting them.

It identified the Palestinians as Mohammad Abdul-Haq, Mahmoud Hamdan and Wael Arar.

Furthermore, the soldiers abducted a young man, identified as Yousef Rajabai, from his home in the Batn al-Hawa neighborhood in Silwan town, in Jerusalem.

In Hebron, in southern West Bank, the soldiers invaded Yatta town, south of the city, searched many homes before abducting a former political prisoner, identified as Yahia Saleh al-‘Amour, 33, in addition to Qussai Khaled al-‘Amour, 27, Issa Khaled al-‘Amour, 25, Issa Mohammad al-‘Amour, 30, and Fadi Monther al-‘Amour, 28.

Also in Hebron, the soldiers invaded Beit Ummar town, north of the city, searched homes before abducting a former political prisoner, identified as Majdi Mirshid Za’aqeeq, 17, in addition to a college student, Mohannad Yousef Alqam, 24.

In addition, the soldiers abducted Tha’er Abu Ramouz, from his home in Hebron city.

In Ramallah, in central West Bank, the soldiers abducted ‘Aahed Riyad Tirawi, from the al-Jalazoun refugee camp, and Mohammad Shahbour, from Birzeit town.

In Jenin, in northern West Bank, the soldiers abducted a former political prisoner, identified as Amin Zakarna, in his twenties, while crossing a military roadblock near Ya’bad town, west of the city.

In Tulkarem, in northern West Bank, the soldiers abducted Fares Samer Fattouh and Ahmad Issam ‘Oteiwi, from their homes in the city, in addition to Raed Adel Hammad, from Anabta town, east of Tulkarem, and Fuad al-Qeb, from Deir al-Ghosoun town, north of the city.

In Nablus, also in northern West Bank, the soldiers abducted a former political prisoner, identified as Mohammad Zaher al-Qet, 36, from his home in Madama village, south of the city.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Al-Haq: “Letters to the EU Urging the Implementation of Effective Steps to Ensure Justice to the Palestinian People at the ICC”

On 13 March 2021, Al-Haq sent letters to High Representative of the European Commission and European Union (EU) member states, following concerning statements made by various EU member states, rejecting and opposing the landmark decision of the Pre-Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC), which affirmed that the Court has territorial jurisdiction over the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), and the historic announcement by the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC on the opening of a full criminal investigation into the Situation in Palestine. The letters stressed that Palestine can no longer be treated as an exception to the application of the international rule of law and urged the EU and all its member states to provide cohesive, public, and compelling support to the independence and impartiality of the Court in all its operations, including its investigation into the Situation in Palestine, which constitutes an important step towards an end of Israel’s impunity and the long-awaited justice for the Palestinian people.

The letters underlined the EU and its member states’ firm support of the Court, and their previous opposition to attacks on the independence and impartiality of the institution, including in response to the imposed-US sanctions against the ICC. The letters further welcomed the statements made by the EU Spokesperson on 4 March 2021, affirming that the ICC “is an independent and impartial judicial institution with no political objectives to pursue,” but, at the same time, highlighted Al-Haq’s great concern of remarks and statements made by EU member states, including Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, and Hungary, which undermine the credibility and the work of the ICC, a vital tool of accountability.

The letters further stressed on the importance of the investigation into the Situation in Palestine, which arose directly from the ongoing and continuous perpetration of Rome Statute crimes in the State of Palestine, amid an environment of impunity managed by the Israeli military occupation, and highlighted how the opening of an investigation by the ICC marks an important step towards ending decades of Israel’s unlawfully-enjoyed culture of impunity.

Finally, by reminding the EU and its Member States of their legal obligation to fully cooperate with the Office of the Prosecutor as per the obligations set forth in Article 86 of the Rome Statue, and in line with Common Article 1 of the four Geneva Conventions and Article 146 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and other obligations under international law, the letters called on all state parties to the Rome Statute, including Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, and Hungary to reaffirm their commitment to fully support the ICC, including by ensuring the arrest and transfer to the Hague of persons investigated and accused of international crimes in the OPT, so as to deter and to prevent the further continuation of international crimes against the Palestinian people.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Soldiers Chase Palestinian Shepherds Near Hebron

Israeli soldiers chased, Monday, Palestinian shepherds in the ath-Tha’la area, in Masafer Yatta, south of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and prevented them from reaching water wells in the area.

Fuad al-‘Amour, the coordinator of the Protection and Steadfastness Committees in southern Hebron, said the soldiers chased the shepherds and prevented them from reaching wells in the area to provide water for their sheep.

He added that the soldiers forced the Palestinians out of the grazing area, while illegal Israeli colonists also chased shepherds from the local al-Hathalin and Shinran local families.

On Monday morning, Israeli soldiers and personnel of the “Environment Protection Authority,” confiscated more than 100 sheep from a Palestinian shepherd in a Janba grazing area, east of Yatta town, south of Hebron.

In related news, Israeli colonists cut and removed fences surrounding privately-owned Palestinian lands in Qaryout village, south of Nablus, in northern West Bank.

The assailants came from Shvut Rachel illegal colony, which was installed on stolen Palestinian lands, owned by residents of Qaryout.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Activists launch campaign against ethnically cleansing in Sheikh Jarrah

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Palestinian and international activists on Monday started a campaign against the Israeli ethnic cleansing of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.

The campaign rejected the Israeli decision to demolish seven houses of the neighborhood and expel their habitants of native Palestinians to replace them with Jewish settlers.

The campaign started at 9:00 pm Jerusalem time and used the hashtag #SaveSheikhJarrah in both Arabis and English.

The occupation state is threatening to expel 28 families from the neighborhood and replace them with Jewish settlers. All residents of the neighborhood moved to the area under an UNRWA-sponsored housing scheme in 1956. The refugee families, all of which fled or were expelled from their homes in 1948 during the Nakbah in order to create ‘Israel’, are unable to reclaim their original land and property while facing renewed displacement

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Israeli settlers raze Palestinian land in Masafer Yatta in an attempt to take it over

Hebron (QNN)- Israeli settlers today razed a Palestinian-owned land in Masafer Yatta in the south of the occupied West Bank in an attempt to take over the land.

Fouad al-Imour, a local activist, told WAFA that Israeli settlers from the illegal settlements of Maon and Karmiel, under army protection, razed agricultural lands in al-Oyoun al-Beed of Masafer Yatta and owned by three local families in order to take them over to expand their illegal settlements and connect them together.

Last week, the settlers razed a nearby land but were confronted by the residents and activists and were forced to leave it, explaining that the settlers have intensified their attacks on Palestinian-owned lands in Masafer Yatta community.

Masafer Yatta, a collection of almost 19 hamlets that rely heavily on animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood. It is located in Area C of the West Bank, under full Israeli administrative and military control.

Home demolitions, confiscation of the most basic infrastructure and military training exercises are part of everyday reality in the area, forcing many to live in natural caves, as they vow to stay in Masafer Yatta no matter what the obstacles.

In many Palestinian communities located in Area C of the West Bank under full Israeli military control, Israeli-designated “firing zones” or “closed military zones” are forbidden for Palestinians to live on without permission from the Israeli occupation authorities, which is rarely granted.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

Three children among arrested citizens in Jerusalem

Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- The Israeli army arrested three children, among others, during an Israeli arrest campaign in the West Bank and Jerusalem.

The Israeli army arrested Abdullah Amjad Obeid (13 years old), Muhammad Dirbas (14 years old), and Ali Sufyan Obeid (17 years old) from their houses in Issawiyyeh in occupied Jerusalem.

The Israeli army also arrested several citizens in the occupied West Bank.

In the same vein, the Israeli army opened fire at two young men in the Jalzoun refugee camp, wounding them with live bullets.

Meanwhile, Israeli settlers, guarded by the Israeli army, stormed the village of Awarta in occupied Nablus and performed rituals last night.

(Source / 16.03.2021)

IOF shoots Palestinian youths in Jalazoun camp

IOF shoots Palestinian youths in Jalazoun camp

Israeli occupation soldiers fired on Monday  Palestinian youths in Jalazoun refugee camp, north of Ramallah, last night, injuring two according to local sources.

According to Mahdi Hamdan of the Jalazoun refugee camp, soldiers fired shots on the youths when they were in an area near the illegal settlement of Beit El, injuring two of them, who were taken to a Ramallah hospital in a moderate condition.

When the youths were shot, Israel said they were preparing to throw a Molotov at the settlement. This statement was not supported by Palestinian sources.

(Source / 16.03.2021)