UPDATE: Israeli troops continue wide-scale assault on Palestinian people {01}

John Cox hazel_motes52 at hotmail.com
Fri Apr 12 15:40:03 MDT 2002


UPDATE: Israeli troops continue wide-scale assault on Palestinian
people
April 5, 2002

For the eighth consecutive day, Israeli forces continue escalating
their wide-scale assault on the Palestinian people living in the
Occupied Palestinian Territories. Israeli forces have reoccupied most
of the West Bank. Israeli forces have committed grave breaches of the
Fourth Geneva Convention, i.e. war crimes and other violations of
human rights.  Despite this, the international community continues to
fail to intervene.  Until this moment, humanitarian organizations are
prevented from providing humanitarian relief, ambulances are hindered
and wounded and killed Palestinians are not allowed to be evacuated.

Since early morning of Thursday, April 4, 2002, Israeli forces have
launched a wide-scale military assault, and have taken measures that
cannot be reconciled with international humanitarian law, in
Bethlehem, Nablus, Ramallah, Hebron, Jenin, Tulkarem, Qalqiliya and
Tubas.

In Bethlehem, Israeli forces continued besieging the Nativity Church,
Virgin Mary, St. Mary, and a building belonging to the Orthodox Church
which has been used as a resthouse for priests and sisters. Israeli
forces have been shelling the Nativity Church to force 250 citizens to
leave. As a result, the bellringer, Samir Salman (42) was killed in
the church inner yard. Israeli forces have destroyed the church's
southern gate. In the morning, a great number of Israeli soldiers
entered the southern yard.

Since this morning, Israeli forces have indiscriminately shelled Jenin
and Tubas by tanks and Apache helicopters. Israeli forces have raided
Jenin hospital, al-Razi hospital, and al-Razi Mosque. Medical
personnel and hospitals have been attacked and completely paralyzed
the health system in the area. Medical personnel are prevented access
to the hospitals.

Moreover, the oxygen units, water tanks and the laboratory and various
windows of the Jenin hospital were destroyed. Israeli forces also
destroyed a PRCS ambulance at al-Razi hospital. There are reports
about four injured, one from Tubas and three from Jenin. These injured
are still lying on the ground since paramedics cannot reach them. In
Jenin and Tubas there have been tens of wounded and injured. Since the
morning, Israeli forces have prevented journalists from access to the
cities and have forced them to leave.

Paramedics at al-Razi hospital have informed LAW that they were unable
to provide aid to seven injured, who are 100 meter away from the
hospital. One person managed to evacuate the body of an unidentified
casualty.  However, when a PRCS ambulance tried to reach the scene, an
Israeli tank fired heavy ammunition and destroyed the ambulance
completely.

Since early morning, Israeli forces have raided Jenin refugee camp.
According to eyewitnesses, there are many injured inside the refugee
camp, since paramedics are prevented access. Moreover, through
loudspeakers Israeli forces have warned medical personnel that they
will shoot at any moving vehicle.

Yesterday, in Jenin, Israeli forces killed four Palestinians: Rabee'
Jalamneh (22), Ahmad Abu Al Heija (24), Nidal Abu Al Heija (22), and
Waleed Sa'eed (22).

In Qalqilia, Muhammad Al 'Aydi (23), a member of the Palestinian
security forces, was killed by gunshots in various parts of the body
and left to bleed for hours before ambulances managed to evacuate the
body.

In Hebron, at 2.30 this afternoon, two Apache helicopters attacked a
civilian car, in another attempt of extra-judicial killing. The
helicopters fired three missiles, however they missed the car that was
driving in Abu Ghanam street, downtown Hebron. The missiles hit
another car and destroyed it completely. There were seven persons,
most of them bystanders injured in the attack, including 11-year old
Mohammad Amin Sughayer, who is in critical condition, with second and
third degree burns on 90 percent of his body.

Yesterday, in Hebron, an Israeli special unit entered the municipality
area, south of the city, and besieged the home of Hazem Qafeeshah.
When he tried to escape, Israeli soldiers surrounded the five story
building and demolished it. As a result, his 20-year-old brother,
Na'eem, was hit by gunshot in the thigh, and his child Ahmad Qafeeshah
was hit by two bullets in the left thigh. At around 9 pm, Israeli
forces entered Um al-Dalieh, the municipality area and Wadi al-Harabeh
quarters, south of the city.  Israeli tanks and Apache helicopters
fired heavy ammunition at civilian homes. As a result two citizens
were injured, Hussain Abu Hamdiyeh (10) and Muhammad Fanoon (15).

In Nablus, Israeli troops have continued shelling Balata, Old Askar
and New Askar refugee camps and the old city with tanks and Apache
attack helicopters. On Thursday, Israeli forces killed six residents:
Mahmoud Al 'Akka (42), heavy gunshot in the head while present inside
his home in Khilet Al Amoud; Ra'ed Ftooh (26) from Balata refugee
camp, helicopter missile shrapnel; Sameer Abu Al Leil (20) from Balata
refugee camp, helicopter missile shrapnel; Maher Ameera (20) from
Balata refugee camp, helicopter missile shrapnel; Naser Khuram; and
Ramzi Drouzeh.  Moreover, Qasem Abu Hamdan, from Balata refugee camp
was seriously injured and ambulances were prevented from evacuating
him.

At around 10 am on Friday, twenty Israeli tanks entered Tubas from its
eastern side and indiscriminately shelled city quarters. As a result,
13-year-old Dima Sawafta was killed by a gunshot in the chest while at
home, ten others were variously injured, ambulances could not reach
them due to heavy gunfire. Also in Tubas, Iyad Abed Sawafta (22), a
farmer, who was working on his land, was killed. An Israeli soldier
shot him, east of Tubas. Two live bullets entered his head and chest
at 1 o'clock this afternoon.

In the light of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's past and earlier
Israeli military assaults on Palestinian towns, villages and refugee
camps, notably, the massacre of Palestinian and Lebanese civilians in
Sabra and Shatila (1982) and his 'Pacificication of Gaza' (1971) in
which Israeli troops imposed a policy of repression, blew up homes,
bulldozing large tracts of refugee camps, imposed collective
punishment, killed Palestinian civilians, and imprisoned hundreds, LAW
- The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the
Environment cals for immediate effective international protection.

LAW Society strongly condemns the ongoing violations of human rights
and international humanitarian law, including those acts that amount
to war crimes perpetrated by the Israeli occupation forces with
impunity and urges the international community to immediately fulfill
their moral and legal obligations to ensure Israel's respect of the
Fourth Geneva Convention and end its occupation of the Gaza strip and
West Bank (including East Jerusalem).

LAW Society additionally calls for a thorough, independent, and
effective international investigation into violations of the Fourth
Geneva Convention in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including
war crimes, and calls for those found responsible for such actions to
be tried before an international court.

____________________________

LAW - The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and
the
Environment, PO Box 20873, Jerusalem, tel. +972-2-5833530, fax.
+972-2-5833317, email: law at lawsociety.org, web:
http://www.lawsociety.org
John Cox
Chapel Hill, NC
This week in history:
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April 4, 1915 Muddy Waters born
April 4, 1968 Martin Luther King, Jr. assassinated
April  7, 1803 Flora Tristan born
April  7, 1915 Billie Holiday born


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