14 November 2016 – Crimes and Violations Perpetrated against the Palestinian People

Excellency,

I write to alert you to the critical situation that continues to prevail in the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, due to Israel’s relentless provocations and illegal actions against the Palestinian people.  On a daily basis, the occupying Power persists with its grave violations of international humanitarian and human rights law, which are exacerbating the humanitarian situation on the ground, intensifying the hardships faced by the Palestinian people and diminishing any real hope or possibility to achieve peace based on the two-State solution.

Over the years, we have conveyed hundreds of letters to Your Excellency, particularly during intensely difficult and dark moments faced by the Palestinian civilian population under Israel’s nearly half-century occupation. We have repeatedly appealed to the international community, especially the Security Council, to uphold the Charter and the obligations to respect and ensure respect of international law, including by determining measures to compel Israel to end its war crimes and human rights violations against the Palestinian people. The consensus on this is clear – such respect is imperative, not only to stem the deterioration of the situation and alleviate human suffering in the immediate term, but to salvage the long-term prospects for peace and expedite realization of the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights, including to self-determination and freedom, which have been forcefully withheld from them for far too long.

Regrettably, our calls have fallen on deaf ears and the international community, in specific the Security Council, continues to fail to uphold its obligations despite the international community’s unanimity on both the illegality of Israel’s policies and practices against the Palestinian people, including its measures of settlement colonization throughout the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and its nearly ten-year blockade of the Gaza Strip in an act of gross and massive collective punishment against our people.  One of the main tragedies of the inaction by the international community is that it has unquestionably emboldened Israel to persist with its destructive policies and practices against the defenseless Palestinian population, including, inter alia, the use of excessive force against Palestinian civilians, including children and women, causing death and injury. And, as has been the case throughout the decades, Palestinian children are inordinately bearing the brunt of this increasingly oppressive, violent and illegal Israeli occupation.

Alongside the constant oppression of the Palestinian people, the occupying Power has been unrelenting in its illegal colonization practices, with settlement and Wall construction and all related measures, including confiscation of land, demolition of homes and forced displacement of civilians, continuing unabated in grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention and constituting a war crime under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.  The destructive impact of such Israeli violations is immense and has caused further decline of socio-economic conditions, inflamed tensions and anger among the Palestinian civilian population and deepened their hopelessness.

 

While impossible to record each and every crime committed by Israeli occupying forces and terrorist settlers against the Palestinian people, the record below accounts for some of the many Israeli crimes since our last letter on 7 October 2016, all clearly reflecting policies aimed at dehumanizing and denying the rights of the Palestinian civilian population, traumatizing generation after generation under this illegal occupation:

9 October 2016

  • Israeli occupying forces demolished eight homes in the Bedouin community of Khan Al-Ahmar in the central West Bank, forcibly displacing and leaving homeless 28 Palestinians, 18 of them children.

 

20 October 2016

  • Israeli occupying forces shot and killed Khalid Bahr Ahmad Bahr, age 15. The boy was shot in the back, with the bullet exiting through his chest.  In a clear continuation of Israel’s “shoot-to-kill” policy, Israeli soldiers shot Khalid in the back because he was allegedly throwing stones. The fact he was shot three times in the back clearly disproves the bogus claim that the Israeli forces felt under threat.

 26 October 2016

  • Israel, the occupying Power, demolished a four-apartment building in the Palestinian neighbourhood of Silwan of Occupied East Jerusalem under the pretext of “construction without permission.” Israeli forces, accompanied by armed bulldozers, broke into the area in the early morning hours and demolished the building owned by four brothers from the Ja’afreh family displacing 30 people, including women and children. Issa Ja’afreh, owner of one of the apartments, said he and his brothers have been fighting the demolition order for nine years hoping to get a building permit from the occupying Power but to no avail. Besides the cruel and illegal demolition of their homes, they have been ordered to pay demolition costs estimated at nearly 40,000 US dollars.

 27 October 2016

  • So-called Israeli municipality announced its intention to construct 180 illegal settlement units in the illegal settlement “Gilo” in Occupied East Jerusalem.

29 October 2016

  • Ahmad Hamed was shot and severely injured by an Israeli occupying soldier who was manning a military checkpoint near the town of Silwad, east of Ramallah. Hamed was shot by three bullets in the right leg, stomach and right shoulder causing rupture in the lung and fractured ribs. The bullet lodged in the liver and he remains in critical condition.

 30 October 2016

  • Khalid Ahmad Elayyan Ikhlayyil, 23, was killed and killed by Israeli occupying forces near the village of Beit Ummar near Al-Khalil in the vicinity of the illegal settlement bloc of “Gush Etzion”.

 1 November 2016

  • The occupying Power raised an Israeli flag at the eastern entrance of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, also known as the Church of the Resurrection, in Occupied East Jerusalem. The Higher Presidential Committee of Church Affairs in Palestine condemned this illegal action, stressing that it constitutes a clear violation of the sanctity of the holy site and the historic status quo that has been in place for decades, including that the occupying Power shall not to raise any flags on Muslim or Christian religious properties.

 2 November 2016

  • Israeli occupying forces detained at least 28 Palestinians, including a woman and five children aged 15, 16 and 17 years, during overnight raids in the Occupied West Bank, including Occupied East Jerusalem.
  • Israeli occupying forces demolished a two-story residence in Beit Hanina, a neighborhood of Occupied East Jerusalem, displacing more Palestinian families.

3 November 2016

  • Maen Nasser al-Din Abu Qaraa, age 23, from the village of al-Mazraa al-Qibliyaa was killed by Israeli occupying forces after allegedly attempting to stab an Israeli soldier who was guarding a bus stop near the illegal settlement of “Ofra” near Ramallah. Occupying forces reportedly prevented Palestinian medics from approaching the scene, leaving him to bleed to death. He is the 238th Palestinian to be killed by Israeli occupying forces or settlers since the recent cycle of violence began in October 2015. 
  • Israeli occupying forces detained at least 22 Palestinians, including nine members of the Abu Shousheh family, during overnight raids across the West Bank. Israeli soldiers also ransacked a shop located beneath Abu Shouseh’s house and confiscated a number of vehicles. Also, in Occupied East Jerusalem, so-called Israeli forces raided the Jabal Al-Mukabbir neighborhood, forcibly searching two homes and detaining four Palestinians from Ewesat family, including three brothers.
  • Occupying forces demolished two storage warehouses and a butchery in Beita, south of Nablus.

4 November 2016

  • Israeli occupying forces reportedly banned the Muslim call to dawn prayer from the loudspeakers of three mosques in the town of Abu Dis. Israeli soldiers raided the town just before the dawn prayer on Friday, 4 November, and raided the Al-Rahman, Al-Taybeh and Al-Jamia mosques in the town and issued a ban on the call for dawn prayer through the loudspeakers, in a clear violation of the fundamental right of freedom to worship.  The events in Abu Dis came a day after a number of illegal Israeli settlers from the illegal settlement of “Pisgat Zeev” protested in front of the house of so-called Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barakat over the “noise pollution” caused by the Muslim call to prayer.

 6 November 2016

  • Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen off the coast Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip. According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), Israeli forces detained 71 fishermen and confiscated 22 fishing boats throughout 2015. The Center reported that Israeli naval forces also opened fire on Palestinian fishermen at least 139 times over the course of the year in the blockaded Gaza Strip, wounding 24 persons and damaging 16 fishing boats.

7 November 2016

  • An Israeli court sentenced a 14-year-old Palestinian boy, Ahmad Manasra, to 12 years in prison. Manasra was convicted of attempted murder for carrying out an alleged stabbing attack on 12 October 2015 that injured two Israeli settlers near the illegal settlement of “Pisgat Zeev” in the Beit Hanina neighborhood of Occupied East Jerusalem.   In addition to the sentencing of a child to a 12-year prison sentence, the so-called court also imposed a fine on his family of over 45,000 US dollars.

It should be mentioned that during the alleged attack, Ahmad’s cousin Hassan Khalid Manasra , age 15, was shot dead at the scene by occupying forces, while Ahmad was hit by a car and seriously wounded. A video was taken of young Ahmad lying injured and bleeding on the ground, with an Israeli onlooker clearly heard saying: “Die, son of a wh***! Die!” while another tells the Israeli police officer to shoot him. The cruel treatment of Ahmad continued after his detention as Israeli forces cursed and verbally abused him, who at the time was 13-years-old.

Ahmad’s trial was also postponed several times, leaving many to conclude that the move to delay the case until he turned 14 in January was deliberately made to facilitate a sentencing when he would be old enough under Israeli law for a prison sentence.  It is important to note, that according to a report this past September by the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, at least 1,000 Palestinian children between the ages of 11 and 18 have been detained by Israel since January 2016, many who have been abused and tortured while in detention. According to Palestinian prisoners’ rights groups Addameer, a total of 340 Palestinian children are currently being incarcerated by Israel.

9 November 2016

  • Muhammad Amr, age 32, from the city of Tulkarem was critically wounded by live ammunition shot by Israeli occupying forces at the entrance of the village of Huwwara near Nablus.  The occupying Power alleged that Muhammad tried to stab an Israeli soldier while witnesses at the scene claimed that Muhammad was only attempting to cross the street before being shot.

As evidenced by the mounting list of human rights violations and international humanitarian law violations, Israel, the occupying Power, remains in complete disrespect and contempt of the law, causing endless destruction, suffering and anguish for the Palestinian people.  We repeat today our appeal to the international community to protect our people, as a matter of urgency and in accordance with international law.  Moreover, we call for urgent action to compel Israel to completely halt its illegal colonization of the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem. This is imperative to stem the deterioration and reverse the dangerous reality on the ground, as repeatedly stressed by the international community, including the Quartet.  The international community must unequivocally demand an end to all of these Israeli violations and the Security Council in specific cannot be absolved of its responsibilities.  The time is long overdue to stop Israel from acting as a State above the law and to finally end this illegal occupation in all its manifestations.

This letter is in follow-up to our 597 previous letters regarding the ongoing crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, which constitutes the territory of the State of Palestine. These letters, dated from 29 September 2000 (A/55/432-S/2000/921) to 7 October 2016 (A/ES-10/734-S/2016/848) constitute a basic record of the crimes being committed by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people since September 2000.  For all of these war crimes, acts of State terrorism and systematic human rights violations being committed against the Palestinian people, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators be brought to justice.

I should be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of the present letter distributed as a document of the tenth emergency special session of the General Assembly, under agenda item 5, and of the Security Council.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.

 

Feda Abdelhady-Nasser

Charge’ d’Affaires, a.i.

7 October 2016 – Israeli Crimes and Violations Perpetrated Against the Palestinian People

Excellency,

I regret to once again have to draw your attention to the critical and tense situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, as a result of Israel’s relentless provocations and illegal actions against the Palestinian people.  The systematic human rights violations and breaches of humanitarian law, particularly the theft and colonization of the Palestinian land, being perpetrated by the occupying Power continue to undermine the fragile and perilous situation on the ground and threaten to make the two-State solution impossible.

In flagrant defiance of international law and the demands of the international community to cease its illegitimate, destructive campaign of settlement building throughout the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, Israel, the occupying Power, continues to provoke and incite with repeated declarations regarding further plans to colonize the Palestinian land.  Just last week, the occupying Power announced its intention to advance plans to construct an entirely new illegal Israeli settlement in the northern occupied West Bank, likely to be used to [Read more…]

20 September 2016 – Letter on Israeli Killing of Palestinian Civilians

Excellency,

I am compelled to draw your attention to the very fragile, unstable situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem – the Territory that constitutes the State of Palestine – due to the continued illegal policies and practices being pursued by Israel, the occupying Power, in grave breach of international law, including humanitarian and human rights law, and in blatant disregard for the lives of Palestinian civilians held hostage under its occupation. [Read more…]

8 September 2016 – Critical Condition of Hunger-Striking Prisoners

Excellency,

I write to alert you to the grave situation and continuously rising tensions in the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, as a result of Israel’s relentless provocations and illegal actions against the Palestinian people. On a daily basis, the occupying Power persists with its grave violations of international humanitarian and human rights law, which are exacerbating the humanitarian situation  on the ground, intensifying the hardships faced by the Palestinian people and diminishing any hope to achieve peace based on the two-State solution.

Today, we bring your immediate attention to the critical situation of Palestinian political prisoners illegally imprisoned and detained by Israel. Thousands of Palestinians, among them women and children, continue to be held in deplorable conditions and subjected to grave human rights violations. In particular, I must underscore the plight of three hunger-striking prisoners risking their lives in a peaceful, non-violent protest of their detention without charge.  In this regard, Malik Al-Qadi, age 20, and brothers, Mohammed, age 25,  and Mahmoud Al-Balboul,, age 21, have been on a continuous hunger strike for more than 67 days and are almost facing inevitable death after being neglected and treated inhumanely by Israeli occupation authorities.  [Read more…]

2 September 2016 – Israeli Colonization Continues Further Eroding the Two-State Solution

Palestine Letters GENERAL FINALExcellency,

It is with grave concern that I write to draw your attention to the current situation in the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, where the Palestinian people are deeply suffering from Israel’s nearly 50-year illegal foreign occupation. With each passing day Israel, the occupying Power, accelerates its illegal settlement campaign and strategic and systematic home demolitions further confirming its true intentions to maintain its occupation of Palestine and to construct and expand illegal settlements and annex Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem. This colonization campaign is in clear breach of international law and in absolute defiance of the international community’s strong condemnations. They are also in complete contradiction of the two-State solution based on the pre-1967 borders and are further dimming the prospects for peace. [Read more…]

23 August 2016 – Israeli Colonization in Al-Khalil and Attacks against Gaza

160823 Palestine LettersExcellency,

The situation in the Occupied State of Palestine continues to deteriorate daily and the Palestinian civilian population continues to suffer immensely as Israel intensifies its unlawful punitive measures and actions, including in connection with its attacks against the besieged Gaza Strip and its ongoing settlement activities throughout the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. As innocent Palestinian civilians, including women and children, continue to be killed and injured with impunity by the Israeli occupying forces, collective punishment measures are being simultaneously imposed against the entire Palestinian population, deepening the collective suffering and exacerbating the volatile situation on the ground. [Read more…]

18 August 2016 – Israeli Colonization and Repression Campaign Escalates

Excellency,

160818 Palestine LetterIt is with regret that I must draw your attention to the ongoing misery and hardships being endured by the Palestinian people, who continue to suffer the injustice and indignity of Israel’s illegal foreign occupation.  Tensions are surging as Israel, the occupying Power, presses on with its campaign of repression against Palestinian civilians in tandem with its destructive and gluttonous colonization campaign, both with grave consequences on our people and the prospects for peace. [Read more…]

27 July 2016 – New Illegal Israeli Settlements

160727 Palestine Letters FINALExcellency,

I regret to inform Your Excellency that conditions in the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, are worsening as Israel, the occupying Power, continues its illegal and provocative practices, including in connection with its settlement activities and collective punishment of the Palestinian people.

In grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, notably Article 49 and Article 33, Israel persists with its colonization of the Palestinian land, the confiscation and destruction of Palestinian property, and forced displacement of Palestinian civilians. The cumulative effect is one of increased humanitarian suffering, frustration and hopelessness threatening to further destabilize the already perilous situation on the ground. [Read more…]

22 July 2016: Continued Israeli Violations Against the Palestinian People

Excellency,160722 Palestine Letter

It has been one month since our last letter regarding the situation in the occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem. Regrettably, the situation continues to deteriorate further and the Palestinian people, particularly the children and youth, continue to suffer the gravest of consequences as a result of Israel’s nearly 50-year illegal belligerent foreign military occupation. With each passing day, violation after violation is committed against the entire Palestinian population by Israel, the occupying Power, and the very party with the legal obligation to protect it. These ongoing violations are in stark breach of international law, humanitarian law and human rights law and contrary to international norms and morality. With every violation committed against the Palestinian people by Israeli occupying forces hope dwindles and a peaceful reality becomes more distant. [Read more…]

22 June 2016 – More Palestinian Children Tragically Killed by Israel

160622 Palestine LetterExcellency,

Since our last letter to you, on 16 June 2016, the Palestinian people, including children, have continued to be killed, injured and terrorized as a result of Israel’s ongoing violations of international law, humanitarian law and human rights law throughout the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem.    Unprotected, despite the very clear provisions of international law according protection to civilians under foreign occupation, the Palestinian people continue to endure countless human rights violations and war crimes at the hands of the Israeli occupying forces. Tensions have consequently remained high and anger, fear and frustration among our people are rising as the faith that peace can ever be achieved continues to fade more with each passing day.

Each letter that we send to Your Excellency, not only contains a list of just some of the crimes committed by the occupying Power against the Palestinian people and their land, but it tragically contains names and stories of innocent lives that were lost at the hands of the occupation. And with each name and story, a new cycle of hate and anger fester among an occupied people who have been left defenseless against a monstrous occupying Power that unleashes it lethal weaponry against them on a daily basis. No doubt Israel, the occupying Power, has been bolstered by the culture of impunity and lawlessness that continues to prevail due to the failure by the international community to hold Israel accountable for any of its violations and crimes against the Palestinian people and throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. Such impunity has not only absolved Israel from its legal obligations as an occupying Power, but has emboldened its continued perpetration of crimes without fear of punishment. [Read more…]