Wednesday, December 30, 2009

PCHR weekly report 23-29/12/2009: 3 Palestinian civilians killed by Israeli missile

extracts from PCHR weekly report No. 51/2009 23- 29 Dec 2009

Saturday, 26 December 2009 

At approximately 00:30, Israeli troops stationed at observation towards along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel to the north of Beit Hanoun town in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at a number of Palestinians who got close to the border.  The Israeli gunfire lasted for approximately 20 minutes, after which an Israeli aircraft fired a missile at the Palestinians.  As a result, 3 Palestinians were killed:

1.    Basheer Suleiman Mousa Abu Duhail, 20;
2.     Mahmoud Jom'a Ibrahim al-Sharat'ha, 19; and
3.    Hani Salem Mohammed Abu Ghazal, 20.  

The victims are all from al-Nasser village (the Bedouin Village) to the north of Beit Lahia.  They were unarmed and were apparently attempting to infiltrate into Israel to search for jobs.  A fourth Palestinian survived the attack. Israeli occupation forces did not allow medical crews to enter the area to evacuate the bodies until approximately 15:00.  Eventually, medical crews were allowed to enter the area and evacuate the bodies at approximately 16:15.

Monday, 28 December 2009  

At approximately 10:45, Israeli occupation forces moved into 150 meters into the north of Beit Hanoun town in the northern Gaza Strip.  They leveled area of Palestinian land, which they had already razed.  

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

cemetery casualties

In Gaza

Mohammed Abu Sharrar (22) was with 3 friends, walking to the eastern cemetery, east of Jabaliya, early on 27 November when he was hit by the shrapnel. Said Sharrar, “a UAV (drone) dropped a missile next to me. I was hurt the worst.”
Around 6 am and quiet, according to Sharrar, there was no activity in the area, no reason for the Israeli army to target them.
“It was the first day of ‘Eid. We were going to visit the grave of a friend who was killed one year earlier, also during ‘Eid.”
Sharrar, a volunteer with the Red Crescent, was accompanied by three other volunteer medics when targeted.
“We were well over 1 kilometer from the border fence,” he said. “I didn’t hear or know of any problems in the area.”
For the next 8 days, Sharrar was in critical condition, kept on a mechanical respirator. For a total of 11 days, he was in a coma.
Now conscious and in Beit Lahiya’s Kamal Adwan hospital, Sharrar is awaiting permission for transfer to Egypt for removal of the shrapnel still in his body.
“I’ve got shrapnel in my legs, stomach and back. My legs broken as well, one in three places.”
But it’s the shrapnel near his spinal cord that is the most problematic.
“There are no specialists in Gaza who can safely remove the shrapnel.”
From a family of eleven, Sharrar was one of the only members with work.

Days later, Shahin Abu Ajuwa (17) returned for his second time to land near the eastern cemetery to gather stones and blocks of concrete from demolished houses and buildings to re-sell for construction uses. On that morning, Ajuwa was with three other youths, among them his cousin Saber Abu Ajuwa (15).
“We were over 600 metres from the border. We were in an area where many people go daily to collect metal and stones,” Ajuwa said. “The Israelis always see people working here, it’s normal.”
Ajuwa recalls having seen Israeli military jeeps and a tank at the border, also normal.
As they worked next to their donkey cart, still before 9 am, Israeli soldiers fired a flechette shell at them, without warning. Flechette shells, otherwise known as dart bombs, are deadly shells packed with thousands of razor-sharp, inches long darts. The design enables the darts to bore through bone, cement, flesh, and break apart upon entry, rendering the injury even worse. Often, those injured by flechettes have pieces of the darts in them for life due to the danger and difficulty of extracting them.
Israel’s use of flechette bombs is in contravention to the Geneva conventions, particularly in using them against unarmed civilians. B’Tselem, an Israeli rights group, reported that at least 17 Palestinians were killed by dart bombs from 2000 through the 18 April 2008 killing of a Palestinian cameraman and three other civilians, including two minors, by a flechette bomb in Gaza. This was prior to the Israeli war on Gaza in winter 2008-2009, during which Israeli soldiers again used the dart bombs in dense civilian areas. Tens of civilians were injured and killed, including medics answering a call when fired upon.
Marwan, a medic with the Jabaliya Red Crescent centre, was called to the scene.
“Just before 9 am we were dispatched to the martyrs’ cemetery to bring in some wounded,” he said. “I went with Mohammed, another medic, and found the youths roughly 700m from the border fence. There was one youth badly injured. He had been loaded onto the donkey cart.”
Weeks later, Ajuwa still has shrapnel from the dart bomb in both his legs.
“The doctors removed one from my leg, but there are still six more left.”
The teen, is one of eight sons, has five sisters, and the 10 or 20 shekels he might have earned that day would have gone towards his family income.
He is among over 30 reported injured in the border region [at least another 8 have been killed in the border region] by Israeli soldiers.
*Shahin Abu Ajuwa (left) with cousin Saber.
*Attached to the donkey cart, this iron rod was blown open by the blast

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

PCHR weekly report 10-15/12/2009: 1 Palestinian civilian killed, 2 boys detained and beaten

Thursday, 10 December 2009

At approximately 11:30, Israeli forces moved into al-Sikka Street in the north of Beit Hanoun town in the northern Gaza Strip.  They arrested Mohammed Hatem al-Kafarna, 16, and Mahmoud Jameel al-Yazji, 16, when they were collecting stones and iron from destroyed buildings, nearly 500 meters away from the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel.  Israeli forces violently beat and interrogated the two children, then released them at approximately 21:30 on the same day.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

At approximately 06:20, Israeli troops positioned at the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel to the east of al-Boreij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip opened fire at Palestinian houses located almost 700 meters away from the border.  As a result, Sami Shihda Abu Khousa, 48, was seriously wounded by several gunshots to the thighs.  He was evacuated to the hospital, but medical efforts to save his life failed and he was pronounced dead two hours later. 

In his testimony to PCHR, Maher Hassan Abu Khousa, 36, a victim's cousin, stated:

"At approximately 06:20 on Saturday, 12 December 2009, I was at home, nearly 700 meters away from the border with Israel, east of al-Boreij refugee camp.  Suddenly, I heard explosions.  Soon after, IOF troops opened fire at our houses.  I learnt that resistance activists fired some projectiles at the border, and IOF troops repeated fire.  I stepped up on the stairs to see what was going one.  I then heard someone screaming: 'Save me Maher.'  I looked towards the direction of the voice and saw my cousin Sami Shihda 'Abdullah Abu Khousa, 48, on the ground under an awning between my house and his. I realized that he was wounded.  I rushed down and informed my brothers.  I turned on my car and my cousin's son carried his father who was bleeding from the thighs.  We put him into the car and traveled towards al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al-Balah, but as he was in a serious condition, he was transferred to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City.  Two hours later, we were informed the he died of his wound."


Saturday, December 12, 2009

IOF soldiers kill Palestinian citizen in central Gaza

[ 12/12/2009 - 10:06 AM ]

BREIJ, (PIC)-- A Palestinian man was shot and killed by the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) east of Breij refugee camp in central Gaza Strip on Saturday, medical sources reported.

They told the PIC that Sami Abu Khosa, 45, was hit with several bullets in the abdomen and other parts of his body and his condition was critical.

The citizen was admitted into ICU but died of his wounds shortly afterwards, the sources said.

IOF soldiers opened machinegun fire at the area east of Breij hitting and killing Abu Khosa.

Medics: Israeli fire kills Gaza man

Published today (updated) 12/12/2009 13:31

Gaza – Ma'an – Israeli shelling killed a Palestinian civilian in the central Gaza Strip on Saturday, a medical official said.

The victim was identified as Sami Shihadah Abu Khousah, 47.

Muawiyah Hassanein, de facto Health Ministry director of ambulance and emergency services, told Ma'an that Khousah suffered blood loss after he was struck by Israeli artillery east of Al-Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza.

Khousah was transferred from Shuhada Al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir Al-Balah to Ash-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, where he died, Hassanein said.

Palestinian eyewitnesses reported clashes in the area where Khousah was injured. They said Palestinian fighters exchanged fire with the Israeli military, which fired artillery shells.

Israel's army confirmed involvement. A military spokeswoman told Ma'an that Palestinians first opened fire near the border with Israel, and that Israeli forces returned fire toward its source.

The official said she was unaware of any casualties on the Palestinian side. No Israeli soldiers were injured during the clashes, she added.

Meanwhile, the military wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) claimed responsibility for firing a rocket-propelled grenade at Israeli forces operating in northern Gaza.

An Israeli military official said she was not familiar with that incident.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

IOF Penetrates and Attacks the Border Area, Arrest Two Children in Gaza

Al Mezan


At approximately 12:30pm on Thursday 10 December 2009, an Israeli force penetrated approximately 350 meters into the north of the Gaza Strip, into an area of demolished industrial premises southwest of Erez Crossing. Palestinians who were removing rubble from the area were present there when the IOF advanced.
The Israeli force arrested two children; Mahmoud Jamil Hassan Al Yazji, Mohammed Hatem Qassem Al Kafarna(16 and 17 respectively), and took them into Israel. A few hours later, the IOF released Mohammed Al Kafarna while Mahmoud Al Yazji has remained in detention. This is the second time in which the IOF invade this area and arrest Palestinian civilians.
According to Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights lawyer, the IOF transferred the child Mahmoud Al Yazji to Ashkelon prison and interrogated him. On Sunday 13 December 2009, the Israeli court extended the detention period until Friday 18 December 2009

Friday, December 4, 2009

PCHR report 25/11 - 2/12/09: Palestinian injured and abducted

excerpt from PCHR weekly report No. 47/2009 25 Nov.- 02 Dec 2009

Friday, 27 November 2009

· At approximately 05:00, Israeli forces fired a missile at a number of activists of the Palestinian resistance who were near a cemetery in the east of Jabalya town in the northern Gaza Strip, launching home-made rockets towards Israel. Four activists were wounded, one of whom was in a serious condition.

Monday, 30 November 2009
At approximately 11:00, Israeli forces moved nearly 600 meters into the east of Jabalya town in the northern Gaza Strip. Until 18:30, they leveled areas of land which they had already razed.

Wednesday, 02 December 2009
At approximately 09:00, Israeli troops positioned at the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northwest of Beit Lahia town in the northern Gaza Strip fired at a Palestinian who was near the border. He has not been identified and his destiny is still unknown. Later, Israeli forces informed the Palestinian side that he was wounded in the feet and that he was arrested.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Medics: Israeli forces shoot, detain Gaza man

Gaza – Ma’an – Israeli forces shot and detained a Palestinian on the Gaza Strip’s northern border on Wednesday morning, a government medical official said.

Muawiyah Hassanein, the director of ambulance and emergency services in the Gaza Health Ministry, told Ma’an that the Israeli forces opened fire on a man who has not yet been identified, injuring him.

Hassanein said the soldiers denied a Palestinian ambulance permission to retrieve him, leaving him bleeding near the border.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said that Israeli forces shot the man after he ignored warning shots for approaching the border. She said soldiers administered initial medical treatment before transferring him to Barzilai hospital in the city of Ashkelon.

Hassanein said the Health Ministry is in contact with the Israeli military to find out the wounded man’s to try to return him to Gaza.

Witnesses: Israeli forces open fire in northern Gaza

Published Monday 30/11/2009 (updated) 01/12/2009 16:00

Gaza – Ma’an – Israeli forces opened fire at houses and farmland in the northern Gaza Strip on Monday, eyewitnesses told Ma’an.

The witnesses said Israeli forces opened fire while withdrawing from an area southeast of the town of Beit Hanoun where they had entered in the morning.

The area where fire was reported was approximately 800 meters from the Green Line in the agricultural lands of Abu Sufiyah, according to Palestinian sources in the area.

No injuries were reported, according to Muawiyah Hassanein, the director of ambulance and emergency services for the Ministry of Health in Gaza.

An Israeli military spokeswoman denied this report, saying, "The IDF conducted regular military activities today on the border and did not open fire, nor did they come under fire during these activities."

Meanwhile, the armed wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the Abu Ali Mustapha Brigades, claimed responsibility for firing a homemade projectile toward Israeli forces attempting to enter Gaza via the Nahal Oz crossing.

Israeli forces patrol inside the Gaza Strip along the border with Israel on a daily basis. There are frequent reports of Palestinians coming under fire simply for setting foot inside this band.