Introduction

 

This report coincides with the one-year anniversary
of what has come to be known as the “Al-Aqsa Intifada,” which broke out after
the visit by war criminal Ariel Sharon, head of the rightist Likud Party, to Al-Haram
Al-Sharif
(the Holy Sanctuary), which provoked the feeling of Palestinians,
Arabs and Muslims around the world. Israeli occupation forces responded to a peaceful protest organized by
Palestinian civilians against the visit by opening fire with live ammunition,
killing protesters without any threat posed to the lives of Israeli
soldiers. In the past 12 months, Israeli
occupation have forces perpetrated large-scale abuses and possibly war crimes
against Palestinians and their property, through:

 

1) The excessive use of force in dispersing peaceful
demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians against the occupation,
including the use of live ammunition and rubber-coated metal bullets, which
proved to be no less lethal than live bullets, and the use of tear gas. Israeli occupation forces also used a new
kind of gas that left unfamiliar symptoms on those who inhaled it. In an early stage of the Intifada, Israeli
occupation forces used heavy and medium machine guns against Palestinian
civilians participating in demonstrations, and sometimes, combat helicopters
were used to shoot at demonstrators.

 

2) Shooting at Palestinian civilians and killing them
without any clashes being reported. Israeli occupation forces also targeted civilian cars traveling in
Palestinians cities and villages, passing by military roadblocks, checkpoints,
and observation posts. A number of
travelers were killed in this way.

 

3) The formal adoption of a policy of assassination and
extra-judicial killing by the Israeli government, targeting Palestinian
activists and political leaders.

 

4) Bombardment of Palestinian residential areas using
F-16 fighter jets, Apache combat helicopters, gunboats, surface-to-surface
missiles, artillery shells, including Flechettes (shells that have dart-like
shrapnel), and heavy and medium machine guns.

 

5) Incursions into cities and villages under full
control of the Palestinian National Authority (according to the Interim
Agreements), and the destruction of civilian and security facilities.

 

6) Sweeping thousands of donums of Palestinians agricultural
land and demolishing hundreds of houses and factories.

 

7) Imposing a strict siege on the Occupied Palestinian
Territories, isolating Palestinian cities from one another and from their rural
suburbs through blocking all main and branch roads in the West Bank and the
Gaza Strip.

 

8) Giving Jewish settlers freedom to attack Palestinian
civilians and their property before the eyes of Israeli occupation soldiers,
who either participated in such attacks or provided full protection for
settlers.

 

9) Many arrests of Palestinians, often without charge.

 

According to PCHR’s documentation, abuses perpetrated
by Israeli occupation forces in the first year of the Intifada (September 28,
2000 – September 27, 2001) include the following:

 

 

1) Deaths and Injuries

 

1. The total number of Palestinians killed, including
civilians and security men, as a result of shooting, shelling, declared
assassinations, attacks by Jewish settlers and the denial of access to
hospitals, is 617.

2. The number of martyrs killed by shelling is 160.

3. The number of children, 18 years old or less, killed
is 158.

4. The number of women killed is 25.

5. The number of those killed in declared assassinations
is 35, including 33 civilians and two members of Palestinian security services.

6. The number of members of Palestinian security
services killed is 95.

7. The number of Palestinians killed in mysterious
bombings, in which Israeli occupation forces are believed to be involved, is
24, including 7 children.

8. The number of Palestinian patients who died at
military roadblock due to the obstructed access to hospitals is 22, including
four children and six women.

9. The number of Palestinians killed by Jewish settlers
is 23.

10. The number of Palestinians injured is more than
9,000, including 3,854 in the Gaza Strip.

 

2) Aggression Against Land, Houses and Civilian
Facilities (Gaza Strip only):

 

1. The area of swept land is
13,576 donums.

2. The area of swept
agricultural land is 11,372 donums.

3. The area of swept wooded
land is 2,134 donums.

4. The percentage of the
total area of agricultural land in the Gaza Strip swept is 7.25%.

5. The number of greenhouses
destroyed is 463, each of which stood on approximately 1 donum.

6. The number of animal and
bird farms destroyed is 61.

7. The number of wells
destroyed is 76.

8. The number of agricultural
pools destroyed is 75.

9. The number of agricultural
stores destroyed is 130.

10. The number of water pumps
destroyed is 114.

11. The number of houses and
flats destroyed during incursions is 316.[1]

12. The number of industrial
establishments destroyed is 36.

 

The Last Week of the First
Year of the Intifada

 

In the last week of the
first year of the Intifada, Israeli occupation forces continued their
aggression against Palestinians and their property. Since Wednesday evening, Rafah has been
subject to intensive, indiscriminate shelling that accompanied an incursion
into the city, which killed three Palestinians and injured 16. Those killed were:

1) Khaled Mahmoud Mohammed
Abu Habib, 25, his body destroyed by an artillery shell that hit his head;

2) Akram ‘Abdel-Majid Abu
Lebdeh, 27, received shrapnel from an artillery shell in the eyes and the left
leg; and

3) Mahmoud Fathi Hamdan
El-Sha’er, 24, received an artillery shell in the head the destroyed his body.

 

Israeli occupation forces
also destroyed eight houses and severely damaged dozens more.

 

On Wednesday morning,
September 26, 2001, i
n a disproportionate retaliation for the injury of a number of Israeli
soldiers during a bombing near the Egyptian border, Israeli occupation forces
intensively fired artillery shells and heavy, medium and light caliber bullets
at Palestinian houses adjacent to the border, south of Rafah. A 16-year-old
Palestinian civilian, Mahmoud Jalal Sa’id Qeshta, was killed by a live bullet
in the head.

 

On Saturday morning,
September 22, ‘Emad Hamdi El-‘Aawdhi, 25, from Al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza
City, a member of the Palestinian National Security Forces, was pronounced dead
from a previous injury by Israeli occupation forces. He was injured by a live bullet in the head
on Monday, September 17, 2001, when Israeli occupation forces opened fire on
Palestinian houses in Bitounia near Ramallah.

 

On the same day, in the
afternoon,
‘Abdel-Latif
Salim Hassan Radwan, 60, from ‘Azzoun village in Qalqilya died from inhaling
tear gas used by Israeli occupation forces against Palestinian civilians.

 

On Sunday afternoon,
September 23,
Nasrallah
Mahmoud Jarghoun, 20, from Khan Yunis, was pronounced dead at Shifa’ Hospital
in Gaza City from a previous wound in the abdomen he had received from Israeli
occupation forces during clashes in Khan Yunis on August 23, 2001.

 

On Thursday, September 20, 2001, a Palestinian
gunmen, Munir Mustafa Ibrahim Abu Mousa, 34, from Gaza City, was killed by two
live bullets in the head and the right shoulder in an exchange of fire with
Israeli occupation forces in the vicinity of “Kfar Darom” settlement, east of
Deir El-Balah.

 

On Monday, September 24,
2001, at approximately 21:00 local time, Omaya Hamdallah ‘Omran Hussein, 27,
from ‘Azzoun village in Qalqilya, died from a hemorrhage after delivery because
Israeli occupation forces obstructed her evacuation to hospital.

 

All of this coincides with
the implementation of a large-scale isolation plan by Israeli occupation forces
in the north of the West Bank, which constitutes a form of apartheid by Israeli
against the Palestinian people. According to the isolation plan adopted by the Israeli government,
Israeli occupation forces started establishing a closed military zone in Jenin
and Tulkarm, following a decision of the Head of the Middle Command of the
Israeli army. The closed military zone
includes villages and agricultural land, to which their residents or owners
will not have access unless they obtain permission from Israeli occupation
forces.

 



1. Shooting at Palestinian
Civilians

 

Thursday,
September 20, 2001

 

In the afternoon, 15-year-old Ahmed Nayef Wadi from
Khan Yunis was wounded in the right foot by a live bullet fired by Israeli
occupation soldiers. Wadi was
demonstrating along with dozens of children on the space separating between
Al-Amal neighborhood and “Gani Tal” settlement, west of Khan Yunis, when he was
wounded.

 

Friday,
September 21, 2001

 

In the afternoon, six Palestinian civilians, four
under 18, were wounded by Israeli occupation forces during clashes near
Al-Mentar Outlet, east of Gaza City. After the Friday prayer, around 150 young men and children gathered
approximately 150m away from Israeli forces, positioned at the entrance to a
settlement road leading to the Green Line, south of Al-Mentar Outlet. They threw stones at Israeli soldiers, who
opened fire in response without resorting to less lethal means, wounding:

1) Mahmoud Tal’at El-Mallahi, 14, from Al-Moghraqa area
south of Gaza City, with a live bullet in the right leg;

2) ‘Abdel-Halim Saqer El-Fayoumi, 22, from Al-Shojaeya
neighborhood in Gaza City, with a live bullet in the right leg;

3) Rafiq Subhi Jadallah, 16, from Al-Remal neighborhood
in Gaza City, with a live bullet in the left leg;

4) Rashid Salem Haraz, 16, from Al-Shojaeya neighborhood
in Gaza City, with a live bullet in the right thigh;

5) Ramzi Tayseer Helles, 20, from Al-Shojaeya
neighborhood in Gaza City, with a live bullet in the right thigh; and

6) Mohammed Riad Zaqoul, 15, from Sheikh Radwan
neighborhood in Gaza City, with a live bullet in the right leg.

 

The same afternoon, Israeli occupation soldiers
positioned at the northern entrance to Al-Bireh, fired live ammunition, tear
gas, and stun grenades at Palestinian demonstrators, wounding six. Among the wounded was 17-year-old Muhsen
Fahed ‘Arar, from Qarawat Bani Zeid village near Ramallah, hit by two live
bullets in the neck and the right hand. He was evacuated to Ramallah Hospital, where medical sources stated that
one of the bullets entered the neck and hit the diaphragm, the lungs and the spleen. The other wounded were:

1) Tariq Mohammed El-Khatib, 18, from Bal’ein village,
wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet in the jaw;

2) Fadi ‘Ali ‘Oudeh, 24, from Qaddoura refugee camp,
wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet in the head;

3) Ibrahim Abu Hajleh, 41, from Deir Estia village near
Salfit, wounded by a rubber-coated metal bullet in the right hand;

4) Majeda Abu Ghoush, 16, from Ramallah, wounded by a
rubber-coated metal bullet in the left leg; and

5) Jamal Ismail Khatib El-‘Aarouri, 37, a journalist,
from Ras Karkar village in Ramallah, wounded by a stun grenade in the right
leg.

 

Also in the afternoon, 16-year-old Kamal Samir ‘Azzam
from Khan Yunis was wounded in the right foot by a live bullet fired by Israeli
occupation soldiers. ‘Azzam was
demonstrating along with dozens of children in the space separating between
Al-Amal neighborhood and “Gani Tal” settlement, west of Khan Yunis, when he was
wounded.

 

Saturday,
September 22, 2001

 

In the afternoon, ‘Abdel-Latif Salim Hassan Radwan,
60, from ‘Azzoun village in Qalqilya died from inhaling tear gas used by
Israeli occupation forces against Palestinian civilians. At approximately 15:00 local time, Radwan,
who suffered from heart disease, was on his way back home from Nablus. Since the main road between Nablus and
Qalqilya is closed, Radwan, like other Palestinians, got out of the taxi he
traveled in and walked to bypass an Israeli military roadblock near Jeit
village. Israeli occupation forces fired
tear gas canisters at these Palestinians. Radwan inhaled the tear gas and fainted. Some civilians took him into a taxi, but Israeli soldiers denied its
passage. So, they were forced to carry
him and walk towards hospital. He died
before arriving at hospital. 

 

At approximately 16:00 local time, dozens of
Palestinian children demonstrated in the space separating Al-Amal neighborhood
from “Gani Tal” settlement, west of Kahn Yunis. Israeli occupation soldiers fired live ammunition and tear gas canisters
at the demonstrators, wounding two:

1) ‘Abdel-Hamid Ismail Mahmoud, 10, wounded by a live
bullet in the left foot; and

2) Khalil Mohammed El-Zaqzouq, 13, wounded by a live
bullet in the left foot also.

 

In addition, a number of demonstrators suffered from
tear gas inhalation.

 

Sunday,
September 23, 2001

 

At approximately 16:00 local time, dozens of Palestinian
children demonstrated in the space separating Al-Amal neighborhood from “Gani
Tal” settlement, west of Khan Yunis. They threw stones towards an Israeli military patrol, approximately 100m
away from them. Israeli soldiers fired
live ammunition and tear gas at the demonstrators, wounding three:

1) Mohammed Bassam El-Hindi, 13, wounded by a
rubber-coated metal bullet in the head;

2) Tha’er Zayed ‘Aashour, 13, wounded by a live bullet
in the right foot; and

3) Mohammed Ibrahim Rayan, 12, received burns in the
back from a tear gas canister.

 

In addition, dozens suffered from tear gas
inhalation.

 

At approximately 16:30 local time, Nasrallah Mahmoud
Jarghoun, 20, from Khan Yunis, was pronounced dead at Shifa’ Hospital in Gaza
City from a previous wound he had received from Israeli occupation forces. On Thursday afternoon, August 23, 2001,
bloody clashes erupted in Khan Yunis between Palestinian civilians and Israeli
occupation forces after the funeral ceremony of a Palestinian killed by Israeli
soldiers. Israeli occupation soldiers
shot dead Mohammed Jaber Maraziq Zo’rob, 20, with a live bullet in the chest,
and wounded five others, including Jarghoun, who was seriously wounded by a
live bullet in the abdomen.[2] He was evacuated to Shifa’ Hospital in Gaza
City, where he received medical attention until he succumbed to his wound.

 

Monday,
September 24, 2001

 

At approximately 14:00 local time, after the funeral
ceremony of Martyr Nasrallah Mahmoud Jarghoun, dozens of Palestinian children
gathered on the space separating between the cemetery of Khan Yunis and “Neve
Dekalim” settlement. They threw stones
towards at a fortified Israeli military location in the vicinity of the
aforementioned settlement, approximately 100m away. Israeli occupation soldiers fired live
ammunition and tear gas canisters at the demonstrators, wounding two children:

1) Mohammed ‘Abdullah El-Ghalban, 13, wounded in the
back by shrapnel from a live bullet; and

2) Islam Hassan Abu ‘Oudeh, 13, wounded in the left hand
by shrapnel from a live bullet.

 

At approximately 17:00 local time, clashes erupted in
the space between Al-Amal neighborhood and “Gani Tal” settlement, west of Khan
Yunis. Israeli occupation soldiers fired
live ammunition and tear gas canisters at demonstrating young men and children. Two demonstrators were wounded:

1) Khamis Mustafa El-Baz, 13, wounded by shrapnel in the
right foot from a live bullet; and

2) ‘Arafat Fu’ad Barbakh, 22, wounded by shrapnel in the
left leg from a live bullet.

 

In addition, some demonstrators suffered from tear
gas inhalation.

 

Also at approximately 17:00 local time, Israeli
occupation soldiers, positioned in a military location south of Erez industrial
zone in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire on Palestinian taxis, which
gathered near the entrance of the industrial zone to transport Palestinian
laborers home. PCHR’s field officer in
the northern Gaza Strip reported that Israeli soldiers opened fire to prevent
taxis from gathering in the area. No
casualties were reported.

 

Tuesday,
September 25, 2001

 

At approximately 04:30 local time, Israeli occupation
soldiers, positioned in a newly established military location adjacent to the
border between the West Bank and Israel, west of Kharas village in Hebron,
opened fire on a Palestinian civilian car transporting Palestinian laborers
from Hebron to their work in Israel. Four laborers were wounded. In
his testimony to the Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and
the Environment (LAW), one of the wounded said that Israeli soldiers fired at
their car from a distance of 4m only. Then, they ordered the four laborers traveling in the car to get out and
refused to offer help to the wounded or to call an ambulance. One of the laborers was able to call another
civilian car through his mobile phone. The
car came to the area and evacuated the wounded:

1) Ahmed Hussein Shehadeh Da’ajneh, 22, from Yatta
village, seriously wounded by a live bullet in the pelvis;

2) Hammad Ismail Abu Malash, 30, from Yatta village,
wounded by shrapnel in the left forearm and foot;

3) Mohammed Ismail Abu Malash, 26, from Yatta, wounded
by shrapnel in the neck and the back; and

4) Riad Khalil ‘Awadh Zein, 26, wounded by shrapnel in
the right leg and hand.

 

At approximately 16:00 local time, dozens of
Palestinian children demonstrated in the space between Al-Amal neighborhood and
“Gani Tal” settlement, west of Khan Yunis. Israeli occupation soldiers fired live ammunition and tear gas canisters
at the demonstrators, wounding Bassem Mohammed Hamdan, 13, with a live bullet
in the right foot. In addition, a number
of demonstrators suffered from tear gas inhalation. Clashes lasted up to 18:00 local time.

 

Wednesday,
September 26, 2001

 

At approximately 16:00 local time, clashes erupted on
the space between Al-Amal neighborhood and “Gani Tal” settlement, west of Khan
Yunis. Israeli occupation soldiers fired
live ammunition and tear gas canisters at demonstrating young men and
children. Two demonstrators were wounded:

1) Mohammed ‘Abdel-Karim Abu Sultan, 18, wounded by a
live bullet in the right foot; and

2) Hssan Farahat Shalloula, 22, wounded by shrapnel in
the left knee from a live bullet.

 

In addition, some demonstrators suffered from tear
gas inhalation.

 

2. Shelling of, and
Incursions into Palestinian Cities and Residential Areas

 

Friday, September 21, 2001

 

In the afternoon, seven
Palestinian civilians were injured when Israeli occupation forces shelled
Palestinian house in Rafah. PCHR’s field
officer in Rafah reported that such shelling was surprising and based on no apparent
reason. The injured were evacuated to
Al-Joneina Hospital in Rafah. At
approximately 15:30 local time, Israeli occupation soldiers, positioned near
Salah El-Din Gate at the border with Egypt, south of Rafah, opened fire on
Block “O” area in Rafah refugee camp, injuring two Palestinian civilians:

1) Khader ‘Abdel-‘Azziz
‘Awadh, 32, injured by shrapnel in the right thigh; and

2) Sari ‘Abdel-Karim Abu
Hashem, 14, injured by a live bullet in the head.

 

At approximately 18:30
local time, Israeli occupation soldiers of the same military location fired
four artillery shells at the same area, injuring five Palestinian civilians:

1) Mahmoud Salim Abu Jazar,
67, injured by shrapnel in the abdomen;

2) ‘Atwa Shehda ‘Abdel-‘Aal,
4, injured by shrapnel in the back;

3) Sa’id ‘Oudeh Abu Juleidan,
42, injured by shrapnel in the pelvis;

4) Subhia Ahmed ‘Abdel-‘Aal,
41, injured by shrapnel in the left thigh and foot; and

5) ‘Abdel-Hadi Yousef Qeshta,
2, injured by shrapnel in the left leg and the right foot.

 

Furthermore, two houses
were severely damaged:

1) A 150-square-meter,
one-story house in which 13 people live, owned by Ashraf ‘Abdel-Karim Suleiman
Qeshta, was hit at approximately 15:30 local time by two artillery shells that
severely damaged its walls, doors, windows and water tanks.

2) A 180-square-meter, three-story
house in which 20 people live, owned by Mohammed Saleh Mohammed El-Titi, was
hit at approximately 18:00 local time by an artillery shell and several heavy
and medium caliber bullets, that severely damaged its walls, doors, windows and
water tanks.

 

Saturday, September 22, 2001

 

Early in the morning,
‘Emad Hamdi El-‘Aawdhi, 25, from Al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, a member
of the Palestinian National Security Forces, was pronounced dead from a
previous injury by Israeli occupation forces. He was injured by a live bullet in the head on Monday, September 17,
2001, when Israeli occupation forces opened fire on Palestinian houses near the
cemetery of Bitounia. He was receiving
medical attention in the intensive care unit at Ramallah Hospital until he
succumbed to his injury.

 

From the morning onwards,
Israeli occupation forces had opened fire on Palestinian civilians and houses
in Rafah. A woman and two children were
injured and were evacuated to Al-Joneina Hospital in Rafah. PCHR’s field officer in Rafah reported that
the gunfire took place without any apparent reason and resulted in severe
damage to a number of houses.

 

At approximately 12:00
local time, Meriam Ibrahim El-Hams, 55, was injured by shrapnel from a live
bullet while she was shopping in an area near Salah El-Din Gate at the border
with Egypt, south of Rafah. The area had
been subjected to gunfire by Israeli occupation soldiers, positioned near the
gate, since 09:30 local time for no apparent reason. At approximately 19:00 local time, Israeli
soldiers opened fire again, injuring Jamil Yahia Shaqfeh, 15, with shrapnel in
the head, and Jamil Ismail El-Faramawi, 16, with shrapnel in the head and the
back.

 

At approximately 22:30
local time, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced with three tanks, moved from
“Kfar Darom” settlement into Deir El-Balah. They intruded approximately 1km into areas under full control of the
Palestinian National Authority, under the cover of intensive gunfire that
targeted several Palestinian houses. Two
civilian cars, owned by Mahmoud Baroud and Saher Abu El-Aghwar, were
destroyed. The Israeli forces withdrew
to their locations at midnight.

 

Monday, September 24, 2001

 

Since the afternoon,
Israeli occupation forces, positioned at the Egyptian border south of Rafah,
shelled Palestinian houses adjacent to the border. A Palestinian civilian was injured and a
number of houses were damaged. At
approximately 12:00 local time, four Israeli military heavy vehicles took
position at the border opposite to Al-Brazil neighborhood. They opened fire from heavy machine guns at
Palestinian houses, injuring Eihab Mohammed El-Hanadi, 20, with shrapnel
throughout the body. He was evacuated to
Al-Joneina Hospital in Rafah.

 

At approximately 18:00
local time, Israeli occupation forces shelled Palestinian houses in Block “J,”
Block “O,” and Yebna areas in Rafah, causing severe damage to these
houses. From 19:00 to midnight,
Palestinian houses adjacent to the border with Egypt were again shelled. A number of houses were further damaged, but
no casualties were reported.

 

At approximately 21:15
local time, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced with tanks, moved from
“Netzarim” settlement, south of Gaza City, towards Salah El-Din Street, the
main road between the north and south of the Gaza Strip. They blocked the street and moved
approximately 200m north on the street, under the cover of intensive fire. A number of Palestinian houses were damaged,
but no casualties were reported.

 

Tuesday, September 25, 2001

 

At approximately 07:00
local time, Israeli occupation forces, positioned south of Erez industrial zone
and in military locations near Beit Hanoun (Erez) Crossing in the northern Gaza
Strip, fired heavy and medium caliber bullets at Palestinian houses and farms
in the northwest of Beit Hanoun. Three
houses were damaged as follows:

1) The roof and water tanks
of a 120-square-meter, tin-roofed house, in which nine people live, owned by
Mohammed Hassan Abu Shugheiba, were damaged.

2) The roof and a water tank
of a 160-square-meter, asbestos-roofed house, in which 12 people live, owned by
‘Abdel-Hamid Mohammed Abu Ghazal, were damaged.

3) The roof and a water tank
of a 200-square-meter, asbestos-roofed house, in which 21 people live, owned by
Mohammed Ahmed Abu Jari, were damaged.

 

At approximately 07:40
local time, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced with tanks and a bulldozer,
moved from the eastern border of the Gaza Strip, east of Jabalya in the
northern Gaza Strip, into Palestinian areas adjacent to the border. They fire intensively at Palestinian farms,
forcing farmers to leave the area. Approximately an hour later, Israeli forces moved from towards a
Palestinian area in the east of Beit Hanoun. They swept areas of Palestinian agricultural land. PCHR’s field officer in the northern Gaza
Strip has not been able to reach the area to check the damage due the dangerous
security situation.

 

At approximately 21:00
local time, after an exchange of fire with Palestinian gunmen, three Israeli
military heavy vehicles moved from the vicinity of Rafah Border Crossing and
thrust approximately 200m into Salah El-Din Street, southeast of Rafah. They intensively shelled Palestinian houses
adjacent to the street. No casualties
were reported.

 

At approximately 23:00
local time, Israeli occupation forces heavily shelled Qeshta and El-Sha’er
neighborhoods and Block “O” area, adjacent to the Egyptian border south of
Rafah. The shelling lasted up to 02:00
local time on the following day. A
number of houses were severely damaged and four Palestinian civilians were
injured in the feet. They were:

1) Yousef Yousef El-Samhouri,
22;

2) Shadi Saleh El-Sedoudi;

3) Ahmed Jom’a Abu Qamar, 20;
and

4) Ahmed Walid El-Jaru, 17.

 

Wednesday, September 26, 2001

 

In a disproportionate retaliation for the injury of a
number of Israeli soldiers during a bombing near the Egyptian border at
approximately 04:00, Israeli occupation forces intensively fired artillery
shells and heavy, medium and light caliber bullets at Palestinian houses
adjacent to the border, south of Rafah. The gunfire was focused on Block “O” area and Qeshta neighborhood. A 16-year-old Palestinian civilian, Mahmoud
Jalal Sa’id Qeshta, was killed by a live bullet in the head that fractured the
skull. His body was taken to Al-Joneina
Hospital in Rafah, together with eight civilians who were injured by live
bullets and shrapnel from artillery shells and a ninth civilian who suffered
from a severe nervous breakdown. Five
children, one 2 years old and another dumb, were among those injured:

1) Ahmed Riad Abu Taha, 2, injured by shrapnel in the
head;

2) Yousef Ibrahim Nejem, 12, critically injured by a
live bullet in the neck;

3) Faraj Sa’id Abu El-Naja, 16, critically injured by
shrapnel in the chest;

4) Mohammed Hussein El-Sha’er, 14, injured by shrapnel
in the face, chest and abdomen;

5) Mohammed ‘Abdel-Majid El-Mughari, 15, injured by
shrapnel in the back;

6) Mohammed Fadhel ‘Othman, 13, dumb, injured by a live
bullet in the left thigh;

7) Ismail ‘Abdel-Rahman Abu Lebdeh, 23, injured by
shrapnel in the head and the chest;

8) Mousa Jom’a Abu Jazar, 40, critically injured by a
live bullet in the abdomen; and

9) Farid Hassan Qeshta, 30, suffered from a severe
nervous breakdown.

 

In a press release issued that afternoon, PCHR
strongly condemned this attack which was part of a clear pattern of abuses
perpetrated by Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians in the
Occupied Palestinian Territories. PCHR
drew attention to the fact that such retaliatory acts against civilians
violated Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 (relative to the
protection of civilians in war), which provides that “reprisals against
protected persons and their property are prohibited.” PCHR also reiterated its call for the High
Contracting Parties to the Convention to take immediate necessary steps to
provide protection for Palestinian civilians and their property, in the face of
continued violations of the Convention and international humanitarian law by
Israeli forces in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

 

At approximately 23:00
local time, Israeli occupation forces continued heavy shelling of Rafah, while
more than 12 Israeli military vehicles moved into Block “O” area and Qeshta
neighborhood, adjacent to the Egyptian border. The shelling and incursion, which lasted up to 04:00 local time on September
27, resulted in the deaths of three Palestinians and the injury of 16, three of
whom are in critical condition at the time of this writing. In addition, a number of people were
evacuated to hospitals because of suffering either from bruises or from nervous
breakdowns. A number of houses were
totally destroyed without their residents having been able to evacuate their
furniture and property, while a number of houses were severely damaged,
including some which were totally burnt. An artillery shell fell into the courtyard of an UNRWA clinic, causing
damage. Electricity was cut from several
parts of Rafah after electric transmitters were damaged. PCHR’s field officer in Rafah described the
scenes of Israeli attacks as a kind of unilateral war, during which the city
witnessed the most violent shelling since the beginning of the Intifada.

 

Those killed were:

1) Khaled Mahmoud Mohammed
Abu Habib, 25, received an artillery shell in the head that distorted his body;

2) Akram ‘Abdel-Majid Abu
Lebdeh, 27, received shrapnel from an artillery shell in the eyes and the left
leg; and

3) Mahmoud Fathi Hamdan
El-Sha’er, 24, received an artillery shell in the head the destroyed his body.

 

Names of the injured are
as follows:

1) Ahmed Mohammed ‘Awaja, 25,
critically injured by a live bullet in the head, was evacuated to the intensive
car unit at Shifa’ Hospital in Gaza City;

2) ‘Essam Musleh Abu Lebdeh,
32, critically injured by two live bullets in the abdomen and the left eye, was
evacuated to the intensive car unit at Shifa’ Hospital in Gaza City;

3) Mahmoud Ibrahim Radwan,
24, critically injured by shrapnel from an artillery shell in the left leg, the
right hand and the left eye, was evacuated to the European Hospital in Khan
Yunis;

4) Khalil Ghassan Abu Lebdeh,
37, injured by shrapnel from an artillery shell in the abdomen and the left
hand and leg, and his leg was cut;

5) Mohammed ‘Eissa ‘Azzam,
30, his left leg was cut by shrapnel from an artillery shell;

6) Medhat Hammad Abu Taha,
29, injured by shrapnel in the right leg;

7) Ref’at Mahmoud Matar, 37,
injured by shrapnel in the thighs and the right leg;

8) Khader ‘Abdel-‘Azziz
‘Awadh, 34, injured by a live bullet in the right thigh and shrapnel in the
left shoulder;

9) Ismail Ibrahim Abu ‘Anza,
19, injured by shrapnel in the left leg;

10) Ussama Mohammed Fusseifes,
22, injured by shrapnel in the right shoulder and the left foot;

11) Mohammed ‘Abdel-Majid
El-Nems, 20, injured by shrapnel in the left thigh and the chest;

12) Ra’fat Harb Abu Hilal, 31,
injured by shrapnel in the back;

13) ‘Abdel-Halim Radwan, 24,
injured by shrapnel in the right hand;

14) ‘Atteya Mohammed Abu
Jindi, 26, injured by shrapnel in the left hand;

15) Ismail Hassan El-Tarabin,
25, injured by shrapnel in the left thigh; and

16) Ibrahim Salman Qeshta, 26,
injured by shrapnel in the head.

 

Furthermore, dozens of
houses were severely damaged, while Israeli occupation forces totally
demolished eight houses, rendering their 79 residents homeless, as follows:

 

No.

Owner

Number of Residents

Area in square meters

Damage

1.

Hisham Hassan Hmdan
Qeshta

8

160- one floor

Totally demolished

2.

Yusri and ‘Emad Mahmoud
Qeshta

15- two families

220- two floors

Totally demolished

3.

Yousef Mahmoud Hassan
Qeshta

5

170- one floor

Totally demolished

4.

Suleiman Sa’id Barham
Qeshta

4

300- two floors

Totally demolished

5.

Fatema Hassan El-Sha’er

1

150- one floor

Totally demolished

6.

Hussein and Zuhdi ‘Abdullah Abu Nahla

15- two families

300- two floors

Totally demolished

7.

Mahmoud Sa’id Mahmoud
Qeshta

10

150- one floor

Totally demolished

8.

Jalal Hamdan ‘Awad Abu
Zuhri

21

200- two floors

Totally demolished

 

3. A Palestinian Patient Dies
Due to the Obstruction of Her Access to Hospital

 

On Monday, September 24, 2001, at approximately
21:00 local time, Omaya Hamdallah ‘Omran Hussein, 27, from ‘Azzoun village in
Qalqilya, died from a hemorrhage after delivery because Israeli occupation
forces obstructed her evacuation to hospital. At approximately 19:00 local time, Hussein suffered from a hemorrhage
after delivery. She was evacuated in an
ambulance towards Rafidya Hospital Nablus, the nearest hospital to her
village. However, Israeli occupation
soldiers at three military roadblocks obstructed her access to hospital,
although they were warned that the woman was in critical condition. At 21:00 local time, minutes before her arrival
at hospital, she died.

 

4. Arrests by Israeli
Occupation Forces

 

This week, Israeli
occupation forces arrested many Palestinians. These arrests took place in the following ways:

1) Arrests at international
border crossings, which are under the control of Israeli occupation forces.

2) Arrests at Israeli
military roadblocks on main and branch roads and at the entrances to
Palestinian cities and villages.

3) Arrests in Palestinian
towns and villages, often during house raids.

 

The following table lists
significant arrests that took place this week:

 

No.

Name

Age

Place of Residence

Date of Arrest

Manner of Arrest

1.

Methqal Nasri El-Jaloudi

29

Faqqou’a, Jenin

September 20, 2001

At a military roadblock
near Jenin

2.

Samir Khalil El-Fayed

27

Jenin

September 20, 2001

At a military roadblock
near Jenin

3.

Samer Fawzi Sa’id Zeida

23

‘Aanin, Jenin

September 21, 2001

Arrested while on his
way to his work in Israel

4.

Kamal Fares ‘Azzam

36

Jabalya

September 21, 2001

At Rafah Border Crossing
– a member of the Palestinian Military Intelligence Service

5.

Mohammed Khalil
‘Abdel-‘Aal

21

Rafah

September 22, 2001

At Rafah Border Crossing
while on his way to Egypt

6.

Samir ‘Abdel-Halim Dweik

19

Hebron

September 23, 2001

Taken from his house

7.

Khaled ‘Abdel-Halim
Dweik

25

Hebron

September 23, 2001

Taken from his house

8.

 

25

Hebron

September 25, 2001

Taken from his house

 

 

 

****

 

PCHR calls:

 

1) Upon governments that participate in the World
Conference Against Racism in Durban in South Africa to adopt crucial decisions
condemning practices by Israel and its belligerent occupation forces in the
Occupied Palestinian Territories, which can only be described as apartheid
against the Palestinian people.

2) Upon the international community to provide immediate
and independent international protection for the Palestinian people in the
Occupied Palestinian Territories.

3) Upon the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth
Geneva Convention of 1949 to reconvene in order to take effective measures to
protect Palestinian civilians in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, in
accordance with their obligations under article 1 to ensure the respect of the
Convention.

4) Upon the international community to investigate and
prosecute those believed to have committed war crimes in the Occupied
Palestinian Territories before international courts

5) Upon the ICRC to enhance its presence, expand its
activities, and intensify its field observations throughout the Occupied
Palestinian Territories.

6) Upon the European Union to activate Article 2 of the
Euro-Israeli Association Agreement, which provides that Israel must respect
human rights.

7) Upon the international community to provide humanitarian and medical
assistance for the Palestinian people, whose living conditions are increasingly
deteriorating as a result of the continued siege imposed by the Israeli
occupation forces on the entire Occupied Palestinian Territories.

 



[1]
This figure does not include hundreds of houses that were partially destroyed
under shelling.

[2]
For more information, see PCHR’s Weekly Report, August 23-29, 2001.