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Weekly Roundup: 19 - 25 September 2002

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GAZA STRIP/WEST BANK (LAW) - Israeli forces kill 23 Palestinians; Children fired upon in Gaza; Three-day old baby dies after preventing from reaching hospital; Year-old baby girl dies after inhaling tear gas; Homes demolished as a form of collective punishment; Israeli forces kill Palestinian demonstrators.

This week, September 19 - 25, saw the deaths of at least 22 Palestinians, including six children, two under a year old at the hands of Israeli forces. Three days old Rawan Hreizat died from an infection after being preventing from reaching hospital. Gharam Mana', less than a year old, died after inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli troops. Nine were killed in one Israeli raid in Gaza. Another two bled to death as Israeli forces denied access to ambulances.

At least eight homes were demolished this week as a form of collective punishment, leaving at least 66 people homeless, including 19 children. Meanwhile, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian protesters all over the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Four were killed, including a journalist. At least 30 Palestinians were detained this week.

Killed Palestinians this week include Rawan Hreizat (three days old), Gharam Mana' (less than one year old), Abdullah al-Gharabli (14), Baha al-Bahsh (14), Walid al-Mughni (16), Haitham Natat (17), Ahmad Radwan (18), Issa Ismail (28), Riyad Hashash (19), Ihab al-Mughni (22), Mohammad Hamouda (26), Nidal al-Sarsak (26), Ashraf Zwaid (26), Issa Harish (28), Isam al-Talawi (30), Adel al-Deeb (32), Khaled al-Deeb (34), Samira al-Dahdar (33), Jaber Kishku (45), Mohammad Kishku (46), Ahmad Labad (49), Yassin Nassar (50), Nashat Abu Jabara.

Killed Palestinians this week include:

1. Rawan Hreizat (three days old)

2. Gharam Mana' (less than one year old)

3. Abdullah al-Gharabli, 14

4. Baha al-Bahsh, 14

5. Walid al-Mughani, 16

6. Haitham Natat, 17

7. Ahmad Radwan, 18

8. Issa Ismail, 28

9. Riyad Hashash, 19

10. Ihab al-Mughni, 22

11. Mohammad Hamouda, 26

12. Nidal al-Sarsak, 26

13. Ashraf Zwaid, 26

14. Issa Harish, 28

15. Isam al-Talawi, 30

16. Adel al-Deeb, 32

17. Khaled al-Deeb, 34

18. Samira al-Dahdar, 33

19. Jaber Kishku, 45

20. Ahmad Labad, 49

21. Yassin Nassar, 50

22. Nashat Abu Jabara

Excessive use of force

Tuesday, September 24: Israeli troops opened fire on Palestinian school children in Beit Hanoun, Gaza, wounding eight. They included Raed Zakut (13), Mahmoud al Sabagh (15) and Mohammad Abu Mashi (13).

Shelling

Thursday, September 19: South Rafah came under Israeli fire early Thursday morning. Yusef Radwan (40) was wounded in the Israeli attack and several homes were destroyed. Israeli shelling of Rafah began again Thursday afternoon. Israeli shrapnel wounded another four Palestinians.

Friday, September 20: Israeli helicopter gun ships and tanks shelled the Rafah refugee camp. Two children were killed: Abdullah al-Gharabli (14) and Haitham Natat (17). Thirteen others were wounded.

Rafah also came under Israeli fire again on Friday. Three Palestinians were wounded, including Fatima Shakfa (60), seriously wounded in her left leg.

Saturday, September 21: Israeli troops shelled Rafah again on Saturday, wounding three children and one adult: Dana Tamraz (5), Ahmad al-Sharkawi (12), Zuhair al-Mughayir (16), Ibrahim Musa (20).

Israeli shelling continued Saturday evening in Khan Yunis. Several homes were devastated.

Israeli troops' incursions into Palestinian autonomous areas

Thursday, September 19: Israeli troops raided al-Muqata'a, the presidential compound in Ramallah, besieging the Palestinian Presidents headquarters. Israeli troops destroyed buildings surrounding the headquarters. According to information gathered by LAW, approximately 20 tanks, armored personnel carriers, military jeeps, bulldozers and helicopter gunships raided the compound, razing the buildings around the president's headquarters. Israeli forces shot Mohammad Hamouda (26), a presidential guard in the head, preventing ambulances from evacuating the injured man, who subsequently bled to death. Food storage facilities of the compound were destroyed by Israeli troops. The Ramallah governor's offices were also bulldozed to the ground by Israeli troops.

Israeli forces raided Jenin and arrested a Palestinian police officer Hussein al-Ghizawi (25) and taking al-Ghizawi to unknown destination.

Also on Thursday, Israeli troops and bulldozers entered Deir al-Balah, bulldozing approximately five acres of farmland and eight greenhouses. Israeli troops also invaded Asad Bashir's home, turning it into a military outpost.

Israeli troops also made an incursion into Gaza on Thursday, indiscriminately firing upon civilians. According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), based in Gaza, a mentally disabled Palestinian man, Ahmad Labad (49) was killed, as was Samira al-Dahdar (33). Al-Dahdar was shot in the eye while inside her home. Three Palestinians were wounded. Israeli forces also destroyed more than a dozen car repair workshops, warehouses, and grocery stores belonging to local residents.

Also on Thursday, Israeli special forces raided downtown Qalqilya, arrested Said Diab (27).

Saturday, September 21: Israeli forces raided al-Far' a refugee camp near Jenin, arresting Firas Ali (22) and Shadi Omar (24).

Sunday, September 22: Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinians protesting against the siege of the Presidential compound in Ramallah. Four were killed, including a journalist.

According to information gathered by LAW, around 1:00am, thousands of Palestinians went out in the streets in various cities in the occupied Palestinian territories. In Ramallah and El-Bireh, Palestinians headed towards the main square in the town's center. Israeli forces opened fire and killed Isam al-Talawi (30), a reporter with 'Voice of Palestine'. Israeli forces also killed Issa Ismail (28). 16 civilians were also wounded.

In Nablus and surrounding refugee camps, hundreds of Palestinians demonstrated. Israeli forces opened fire and wounded Riyad al-Hashash (19), from the Balata refugee camp. Ambulances were prevented access to the Refugee camp. Al-Hashash bled to death. Muhammad al-Khatib (17) was hit with two bullets in his neck and shoulder. A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance transporting al-Khatib was stopped by Israeli forces. Al-Khatib was taken away to an unknown destination.

In Tulkarem, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinians who were protesting on Yaffa Street. Israeli forces shot Ahmad Radwan (18) in the head. Upon transfer to a local hospital, he was pronounced clinically dead. Two others were injured from Israeli fire.

Around 3:00am, Israeli forces made an incursion into Jenin, arresting Ribhi Abu Mweis. He was driven to the al-Basatin quarter, where Abu Mweis owned a home and storehouse, still under construction. Israeli forces forcibly took the keys to the storehouse and ordered him to go home. At around 6:00am, Israeli troops set explosives inside the storehouse and detonated them from a distance, causing total destruction.

Also around 3:00am, Israeli forces made an incursion into the al-Far' a refugee camp, east of Jenin. Israeli forces broke into the home of Ahmad Sawalmeh and drove him to an unknown destination.

At around 6:00am, Israeli troops reinforced with three heavy machinery and bulldozers made 300m-incursion north Kfar Darom settlement east of Deir al-Balah. An Israeli bulldozer razed ten dunums of agricultural lands belonging to Hamdi al-Azab, Suleiman Abu Jareer, Ali al-Azab, Jamal Abu Salim, Nura al-Fleit and Khalil al-Tawashi.

In the old city of Nablus, Baha' al-Bahsh (14) was shot and killed by an Israeli soldier in the Old City of Nablus. Baha's father, Said, stated to LAW that at around 10:00am on Sunday, Baha' was at the Palestinian Medical Relief Committees office, where he worked as a volunteer. A doctor asked him to accompany a group of internationals visiting the Old City. When he reached Ras al-'Ein in the Old City, a tank and personnel carrier were present. A number of children were throwing stones at them. They were chased them and stood at the al-'Aishiyeh school junction. The children left.

At that time, Baha' moved the delegation inside a nearby store and stood in the street. He saw a group of women walking down the street. He pushed them into the store and returned to his place when a soldier shot a bullet from approximately 220 meters.

Monday, 23 September: Israeli forces killed nine Palestinians in Gaza, among them seven civilians and one child. Twenty people were wounded, two of them critically.

According to the PCHR, around 11:00 pm Monday night, Israeli forces accompanied by ninety tanks, helicopter gun ships and armored vehicles, entered al-Shaja'iyya, a residential area east of Gaza city. Israeli forces pressed on, reaching the edge of al-Zaytoon, a residential area south of Gaza city. Israeli forces took control of the densely populated area through indiscriminate fire from helicopter gun ships and tanks.

Two shells were then fired in the direction of a two-story home, belonging to the family of Mohammad Farhat, killed by Israeli forces during a military operation on March 7, 2002. Several walls of homes were demolished as Israeli forces made their way to the Farhat home, through small side roads.

In al-Zaytoon, Israeli forces planted and detonated explosives in an agricultural store, owned by Ahmad Muqat. A nearby car garage belonging to Mohy al-Deen al-Hantu and a shop belonging to 'Abdullah Daloul were also severely damaged.

Palestinians killed include Walid al-Mughni (14) and his brother, Ihab al-Mughni (21), Nidal al-Sarsak (27), Ashraf Zwaid (25), Adel al-Deeb (32) and his brother, Khaled al-Deeb (34), Jaber Kishku (45) and Yassin Nassar (50).

Tuesday, 24 September: At 1:30am, Israeli forces accompanied by eight jeeps besieged a home in Betunia, west of Ramallah. They broke into the home, arresting three of five family members, driving them away to an unknown destination.

At 9:00am, Israeli forces inside tanks used tear gas and opened fire (live ammunition and rubber coated metal bullets) upon Palestinians demonstrating in al-Dora, west of Hebron. Ahmad al-Sharha (13) was wounded by live ammunition in his right thigh.

Collective Punishment:

Thursday, 19 September: At around 5:00am, Israeli forces attacked the Jenin refugee camp, imposing a curfew and invading a home belonging to Hussein Fayed. The second and third stories of the home had been demolished on the ninth of April this year. Israeli forces planted explosives inside the ground floor of the home and detonated it while watching from afar, reducing it to rubble. Eleven Palestinians lived in the home. Fayed had two sons killed on the third of April this year, during the Israeli invasion of the Refugee camp.

In the evening, Israeli forces attacked the Tulkarem refugee camp, invading the home of Mahmoud 'Abed Rabbo. Two of his sons, 'Abd al-Rahman (29) and Ahmad (28), were taken hostage, driven away to an unknown destination. Israeli troops informed the family that they would keep the brothers under detention until 'Abed Rabbo's other son, Tareq, would surrender himself.

Sunday, 21 September: Around 1:00am, Israeli forces, reinforced with tanks, personnel carriers and two bulldozers made incursion into Qalqilya, reaching the al-Naqqar quarter. Israeli forces besieged and bulldozed the family home of Anas Abu 'Ulbeh (deceased), destroying it completely. Two tanks then demolished the family home of Nasser Nazal (deceased), and two other flats owned by the family.

Around 2:00am, Israeli forces reinforced with heavy machinery attacked Qabatiyya village southeast of Jenin, imposing a curfew. Israeli forces surrounded the home of Hamzeh Abu Al-Rub (35). Israeli forces only allowed 20 minutes for his wife and seven children to evacuate. Two Israeli bulldozers demolished the two-story home with all household belongings inside. Israel claims that Hamzeh is wanted.

Wednesday, September 25: Israeli forces demolished three homes, leaving 36 people homeless, including seven children in Hebron.

According to eyewitnesses, Israeli forces surrounded the home of Diab Shweiki in south Hebron at around five am Wednesday morning. Israel claims Shweiki is wanted. Israeli forces forcibly evicted members of his family, planted explosives inside the home and detonated it while watching from afar. Before retreating, the same Israeli forces arrested two brothers from the family, Usama Shweiki (24) and 'Imad (20), and took them away to an unknown destination. Ten people belonging to two families lived there.

At around 6:00am the same day, Israeli forces surrounded the home of Mahmoud 'Amr in the village of al-Doura, in the Hebron region. Residents were forcibly evicted, forbidden from carrying household belongings with them. Israeli forces planted explosives inside the home and detonated it while watching from afar, reducing it to rubble. Israel claims that one of Mahmoud 'Amr's children, in Israeli custody without trial several months ago for resisting Israeli occupation. Twenty-five people lived in the three-story home, including seven children.

Around 11:00am the same day, Israeli forces surrounded the home of 'Abd al-Khaliq al-Natsha, west Hebron, planted explosives inside the home and detonated it from afar. Israeli forces prevented neighbors from saving any belongings from the home before it was demolished. Israel claims that al-Natsha, in Israeli custody without trial since August 28 2002, is responsible for Hamas in the Hebron region. Al-Natsha's wife lived in the home.

Settlers' Attacks:

Thursday, September 19: According to information gathered by LAW, at around 3:50pm, Wasef Kataneh (30) from the village of al-Baqa al-Sharqiyya near Tulkarem was driving a taxi on the Ya'bad route southwest of Jenin. When he reached the eastern entrance of the village, a number of armed settlers opened fire at him from a distance of 150 meters, hitting him in the head. Medical resources state he is in a serious condition.

Detention & Maltreatment:

Thursday, September 19: In the early morning, Israeli forces made an incursion into the village of Usreen, southeast of Nablus, arresting Taha Qatnani and driving him to an unknown destination.

Friday, September 20: At around 1:00pm, following Friday prayer, Israeli forces made an incursion into the village of Burqa, northwest of Nablus. Israeli forces assaulted two worshippers and arrested Samer Hijjeh (22), driving him to an unknown destination.

Monday, September 23: Israeli forces made an incursion into the same village, arresting 13 Palestinians. They were driven to the Shafi Shomron settlement. Eight were released after interrogation, five are still detained.

Tuesday, 24 September: At 4:00pm, Israeli forces broke into a jewelry store in al-Ram, north of Jerusalem. Ghassan al-Shweiki (28), from Jerusalem, and Ibrahim Barham (21), from Nablus were arrested by Israeli forces. They were driven to the Nevi Ya'qub detention center north of Jerusalem. Barham is still in custody.

Three-day-old baby dies after Israeli forces block routes to hospital:

Monday, September 23: Medical sources at al-Muhtaseb hospital in Hebron announced the death of 3-day-old Rawan Hreizat from Yatta after prevented by Israeli forces from reaching hospital on time.

According to information gathered by LAW, on Sunday evening, Rawan was in pain. Her doctor ordered that she be taken immediately to al-Muhtaseb hospital in Hebron. The next morning, Rawan's parents attempted to drive her to hospital, reaching the Hebron city entrance. Israeli troops stationed at the Israeli checkpoint there would not allow them to cross. Rawan's parents were forced to take much longer distances on different roads. Again, Israeli troops stationed at Abu Sneineh did not allow them to pass. Rawan's parents turned back, using different routes again until they reached the hospital, but it was too late, Rawan had died.

The hospital manager, Dr. 'Abd al-Razzaq Abu Mayyaleh, stated that Rawan reached hospital at 8:30am on Monday, 23 September, dead without any malformations or other marks. It seems she suffered from serious infection. The lengthy ride to the hospital prevented doctors treating her.

Palestinian baby girl killed in Hebron after inhaling teargas

Thursday, September 26: A baby girl, Gharam Mana', less than one year old, was killed after inhaling a quantity of tear gas while with her grandmother in the Bab al-Zawiyya area in Hebron.

According to information gathered by LAW, around 10:00am, Gharam Mana's grandmother was carrying the baby while walking in the Bab al-Zawiyya area. Israeli forces, in an attempt to keep the Palestinian residents of Hebron under complete home-curfew, began shooting live fire and releasing large quantities of tear gas at Palestinians in the area.

Gharam Mana' inhaled large quantities of the gas, and was rushed to the local government hospital. Gharam died soon after her arrival at the hospital. Tear gas may be lethal for the very young and old.

Closing two organizations in Jerusalem:

Friday, September 20: Israel closed two organizations dealing with Arab affairs in Jerusalem. The head of the Sports team union, Jawad Abu Gharbiyya, stated to LAW that at 3:00pm the union received an order signed by the Minister of Interior Security, Uzi Landau, to close the institution. The pretext offered was that it belonged to the Palestinian National Authority. Israeli soldiers confiscated computer systems and some files.

Also on Friday, Israeli forces closed down the Jerusalem Society for Culture and Art. The society's lawyer, Muhammad Dahleh stated to LAW that the society has a legal office, which provides services to Jerusalemites. Soldiers confiscated computer systems and personal papers. Since August 10 this year, seven Arab organizations in Jerusalem have been closed down.

-XeNo-

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