17/2/05

Israel Severely Violates Ceasefire

   

The Palestine Monitor A PNGO Information Clearinghouse

UPDATE

www.palestinemonitor.org/new_web/feb_05_archive.htm#5

Since the ceasefire was declared on 8 February 2005 between Palestinians and Israelis, Israeli forces have violated the ceasefire several times.

The following is a sample list of Israeli violations of the ceasefire, the Road Map, and international humanitarian law since 8 February 2005:

. The assassination of two members of the al-Aqsa Brigades, a branch of President Abbas’ Fatah party, on 15 February. Issam Mansour and Mahyoub Alqani were shot and killed at close range with several live bullets to the head and chest in a Palestinian house in the village of Kufar Qalil. Witnesses say the attack was unprovoked.

. The killing of 15-year-old Ala Hani Khalil near Beituniya on 15 February by Israeli personnel guarding the illegal Annexation Wall in that area. The shooting was said to be in retaliation for stones that he and other children had thrown at Israeli military vehicles to protest the illegal Wall. Another boy of 14 was seriously wounded by the barrage of live fire.

. The shooting to death of 16-year-old Sabri al-Rjoub in Hebron on 14 February. Soldiers claimed he was carrying a knife, but Palestinian eyewitnesses say the boy was unarmed.

. The killing of a 20-year-old resident of Rafah on 9 February, the day after the ceasefire was declared. He was a civilian walking near his home in Rafah when he was fatally wounded by Israeli Forces’ gunfire from the Atzmona settlement.

The above five killings demonstrate Israel’s unwillingness to carry out confidence-building measure with the Palestinian side. Deliberate attacks against children and members of al-Aqsa Brigades, part of President Abbas’ Fatah party, are intolerable acts of provocation and incitement.

Prime Minister Sharon has also postponed the promised release of 500 Palestinian detainees, and Israeli authorities have broken their word by suspending their withdrawal from the West Bank city of Jericho and flouted good faith by refusing to transfer the nearby town of al-Awja (Uja) to Palestinian control along with Jericho.

Other Israeli actions in violation of the Road Map and international law which threaten to destroy the viability of a future Palestinian state:

. The planned construction of a new settlement called Gvaot near Bethlehem which will likely house settlers being evacuated from Gaza this summer.

. The construction of a new settlement on Jayyous village land in the Qalqiliya region. The new settlement is being built on part of the 75% of Jayyous’ land that was isolated from its owners by the Annexation Wall.

. The planned expansion of the Alfei Menashe settlement, which will expropriate more land from the villages of Habla and Ras Atiah in Qalqiliya region to connect it to Nirit village in Israel. This move is strongly opposed by the Israeli village of Nirit itself.

. The massive expansion of the Betar Illit settlement in Bethlehem district, which is currently stealing and destroying Nahhalin village land.

. The expansion of the Har Homa settlement, also near Bethlehem, which will squeeze up against Palestinian towns and make natural growth impossible.

. The continuing failure if the Israeli Army to obey standing orders to evacuate and dismantle several unauthorized Israeli settler outposts in the West Bank, which were deemed illegal by the Israeli High Court.

. The continuing failure of Israel to abide by the International Court of Justice ruling and stop construction on the Annexation Wall, dismantle it, and compensate the victims whose property was expropriated or destroyed. Israel is accelerating construction in many areas, including a highly controversial section of the illegal Wall 20 kilometers deep inside West Bank territory – which is only 50 kilometers wide. The Wall as planned will steal vast tracts of the West Bank’s most prized farmland and water resources and cut the northern West Bank practically in two, severely undermining its contiguity and viability. The Wall as planned will also sever Bethlehem’s ancient cultural, spiritual, and commercial ties with Jerusalem.

. The construction of new Israeli settler bypass roads, which Palestinians are not allowed to use, as well as special tunnels for Palestinian use only which can be easily blocked off at any time by Israeli military or police forces. The new constructions are designed to entrench a system of Apartheid, annexation, and collective imprisonment.

. On Tuesday, 15 February, a Palestinian woman was denied passage through the Qalandia checkpoint and was forced to give birth in a car at the checkpoint.

. The planned demolition of five Jayyous farms and ranches located on the Jayyous side of the Annexation Wall, claiming that they were built without an Israeli permit – even though they were built before Israel occupied the land in 1967.

. The planned demolition of at least 85 Jerusalem-area Palestinian homes to make room for a gratuitously large ‘security buffer’ around the Annexation Wall.

. The planned demolition of up to 3,000 Rafah homes for a dubious Israeli “security moat”.

. The recently announced decision to force East Jerusalem residents to acquire an Israeli permit in order to visit the West Bank, which will be enforced after the Jerusalem section of the illegal Annexation Wall is completed this summer. This will force thousands of East Jerusalemites either to break ties with their friends, family, culture, and career in the West Bank, or to abandon their homes in Jerusalem.

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