Further to the Press Release published by the Palestinian Center for Human rights (PCHR) at approximately 14:00 GMT on Friday, 30 March 2018, and According to the new field updates, the Land Day Activities continued in all border areas in the eastern Gaza Strip while the Israeli forces continued to target those participating in the peaceful assembly, increasing the number of killed persons until 20:00 of this day to 13 while the number of those wounded increased to 1,031, including 218 children and 34 women, in addition to hundreds who suffered tear gas inhalation.
Those additionally killed were identified as:
- Jihad Zuhair Abu Jamous (30) from Khan Younis was hit with a bullet to the head, in eastern Khuza’ah in Khan Younis.
- ‘Abdel Qader Mardi Soliman al-Hawajri (42) from al-Nussairat was hit with a bullet to the abdomen in eastern al-Bureij.
- Naji ‘Abdullah Shehdah Abu Hujeir (25) from al-Bureij was hit with a bullet to the abdomen in eastern of al-Bureij.
- Bader Fayeq Ibrahim al-Sabbagh (19) from northern Gaza Strip was hit with a bullet to the head in eastern Jabalia.
This huge number of victims proves that the Israeli forces continue to commit further crimes and use of excessive force against Palestinian civilians in disregard for their lives upon an official political decision. PCHR emphasizes that before occurrence of demonstrations –previously declared by the organizers as peaceful demonstrations only calling for implementation of United Nation (UN) Resolution 194 and raising only Palestinian and UN flags-, the Israeli forces sent threatening letters to intimidate the organizers and Gaza Strip residents in addition to deploying snipers and dog sniffer unit along the borders with Gaza as declared by Spokesperson of the Israeli Army on his Facebook page. The spokesperson also threatened that “ if needed, we will respond in the center of the Gaza Strip against those behind these violent protests,” Hinting about committing crimes of extra-judicial killings (assassinations).
PCHR hereby condemns this new crime committed by the Israeli forces that resulted in this huge number of causalities, killed and wounded, believing it is as a result of the international community’s silence towards the crimes committed by the Israeli forces upon an official decision at the highest military and political levels.
PCHR points out that the targeting this time was against explicitly peaceful assemblies that include hundred thousands, including thousands of children and women, and by directly firing live bullets without those demonstrators posing any threat to life of soldiers and in disregard by the Israeli forces for the life of hundred thousands of demonstrators.
PCHR warns that as long as Israel continues to deny the rights of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and impose a tightened closure on them in addition to refusing to implement the UN resolutions relevant to refugees and their rights, these demonstrations are expected to continue and increase; a fact that will require the international community and UN Bodies’ intervention to stop the Israeli escalating violations and crimes and to provide international protection for Palestinians in the occupied territory.
PCHR also reiterates its call upon the High Contracting Parties to the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their obligations under Article 1; i.e., to respect and ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances and their obligations under Article 146 to prosecute persons alleged to commit grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention. These grave breaches constitute war crimes under Article 147 of the same Convention and Protocol (I) Additional to the Geneva Conventions regarding the guarantee of Palestinian civilians’ right to protection in the occupied territories.