ISRAELI MILITARY FORCES ESCALATE THEIR ATTACK ON THE CIVILIAN POPULATION

JOHN M COX coxj at SPAMemail.unc.edu
Sat Oct 21 17:03:37 MDT 2000





---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2000 14:44:09 -0400
From: Zahi Damuni <zdamuni at email.msn.com>
Reply-To: palestine-net at egroups.com
To: zahi at al-awda.org
Subject: PNet: ISRAELI MILITARY FORCES ESCALATE THEIR ATTACK ON THE
    CIVILIAN  POPULATION

From: "DCI/PS" <dcipal at palnet.com>

Defence for Children International/Palestine Section
For immediate release
21 October 2000

ref:  003100

ISRAELI MILITARY FORCES ESCALATE THEIR ATTACK ON THE CIVILIAN POPULATION IN
SPITE OF UN RESOLUTIONS CONDEMNING ISRAEL'S DISPROPORTIONATE USE OF FORCE

In spite of a growing number of developments on the international level,
including the passing of UN Security Council Resolution 1322 and the 19
October resolution of the UN Commission on Human Rights
(E/CN.4/S-5/L.2/Rev.1), condemning Israel's disproportionate use of force,
Israeli military forces have escalated their attack on the Palestinian
civilian population of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.  In the period since
the conclusion of the Sharm Al-Sheikh summit on 17 October, 17 Palestinians
have been killed, including 4 children.  Moreover, tens of Palestinians
have been wounded, among them, 18 year old, Sa'ed Al-Tambour from Nablus,
who was declared clinically dead yesterday after being shot in the head
with live ammunition.  Yesterday's casualties bring the total of
Palestinian children martyred since the outbreak of clashes to 31, with 6
declared clinically dead.  All of these children died after sustaining
wounds to the upper part of the body.  According to a random sample of
injuries sustained by Palestinian children, and documented by DCI/PS,
approximately 50% of the injuries are located in the upper body, indicating
an Israeli policy to shoot to kill or seriously injure.  Such practices not
only contravene international standards, but also highlight the spurious
nature of official Israeli claims that soldiers open-fire only when their
lives are in imminent danger.

In addition to the increasing number of Palestinians killed or injured, the
Israeli occupation authorities have maintained the internal closure on
Palestinian areas at the same time as escalating their attacks against
Palestinian residential areas.  Yesterday, Israeli helicopter gunships
fired missiles into the West Bank cities of Nablus, Beit Sahour, and Beit
Jala, resulting in the forced evacuation of tens of Palestinian civilians
from their homes.  According to DCI/PS fieldwork, in Beit Sahour alone, at
least 6 Palestinians were injured in yesterday's attack, among them, 3
children, ranging in age from 5 to 9 years.  Among the children injured is
Palestinian girl-child, Fadia Issam Al-Huwash, who was admitted to
Al-Hussein Hospital after being struck in the neck with shrapnel.
Moreover, 15 houses sustained severe damage, including shattered windows
and partially destroyed walls, as a result of intense Israeli gunfire,
affecting at least 90 Palestinian civilians, including 30 children.  In
addition, approximately 100 other houses in the area sustained mild damage.
 Moreover, illegal Israeli settlers continue to attack Palestinian
residents and their property, terrorizing Palestinian civilians, and
inhibiting the carrying-out of daily activities, such as harvesting the
olive crop and moving freely from one area to the next.  Attacks are
particularly intense in rural villages and isolated areas. These attacks
continue to take place with the full knowledge, and frequently, under the
protection of the Israeli military.

In response to the 19 October resolution of the UN Commission on Human
Rights, the Israeli government publicly stated its refusal to cooperate
with the international commission of inquiry, called for in the resolution.
 DCI/PS views Israel's refusal to cooperate with the international
commission of inquiry not only as an attempt to cover-up its gross
violations of human rights, but also as yet another indicator of Israel's
blatant disrespect for UN resolutions designed to ensure implementation of
international human rights and humanitarian law.

In light of Israel's refusal to cooperate and the deteriorating human
rights situation, DCI/PS demands the following:

1. That the UN:
a. use all means at its disposal to ensure that Israel cooperates with the
international commission of inquiry, called for by the Special Session of
the UN Commission on Human Rights in Geneva.  In the case that Israel
continues its refusal to cooperate, DCI/PS demands that UN Member States
apply the same punitive measures against Israel that it would against any
other country that acts so blatantly in defiance of UN resolutions and
international law.
b. That the UN immediately take concrete and effective action designed to
safeguard the lives of the Palestinian population, in particular children,
against the escalated Israeli assault on civilian persons and property.
c. That the UN initiate the necessary mechanisms for the establishment of
an International War Crimes Tribunal, in order that the individuals
responsible for the ongoing and gross violations of Palestinian human
rights be brought to justice.

2. That High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative
to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War act immediately to
fulfill their article 1 duty to respect and ensure respect for the
Convention.

3. That the leaders of the Arab countries, currently meeting in Cairo,
utilize all means at their disposal to pressure Israel to cease all
violations of Palestinian human rights and immediately end the siege
against the Palestinian population of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.


-END-




**Please note DCI/PS's new office location:

DCI/PS
Al-Bireh/Ramallah,
Sateh Marhaba, Al-Khulafa' Street
Al-Sartawi Building, 2nd floor
Tel:   +972 2 240 7530
Fax:   +972 2 240 7018
(Note: please try and use +970, if the above country code does not work)
Email:   dcipal at palnet.com
Website:  www.dci-pal.org (click on 'new' for updated information






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