Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
Opinion Editorials, April 2017
Deir Yassin Massacre: A Reminder of Israeli Terrorism
April 10, 2017
RAMALLAH, (PIC) + -
69 years ago on this day, April 9, Zionist gangs committed a heinous massacre in the Jerusalemite village of Deir Yassin, killing and slaughtering dozens of its Palestinian residents, including children and women.
Israeli war criminal Menachem Begin, leader of the Irgun gang that participated in the attack on Deir Yassin, was quoted as saying that if it hadn’t been for the massacre of Deir Yassin, there wouldn’t have been an Israeli state.
In a letter to his commanders he wrote, “Tell the soldiers, ‘you have made history in Israel with your attack and your conquest. Continue this until victory. As in Deir Yassin, so everywhere, we will attack and smite the enemy. God, God, Thou have chosen us for conquest.”
The massacre, which was perpetrated mainly by the Irgun and Stern (also known as Lehi) gangs on April 9, 1948, is unforgettable for the Palestinians, especially those who were displaced throughout the world and told the story to their grandchildren.
The day of the attack
At an early morning hour, Irgun and Stern militiamen stormed Deir Yassin village near Jerusalem, and embarked on attacking its residents when they suddenly encountered fierce resistance from local men who used old Mausers and muskets to defend themselves and their families.
Four members of the gangs died and 32 others suffered injuries in the clashes, prompting them to seek help from the leadership of Haganah, another Zionist gang, which sent reinforcements to the village.
By noon over 100 people, half of them women, children and elders, had been systematically murdered by the gangs. About 25 male villagers were detained and loaded into trucks, paraded through the Zakhron Yosef quarter in Jerusalem, and then taken to a stone quarry along the road between Givat Shaul and Deir Yassin and shot to death. The Zionist gangs opened fire indiscriminately at the villagers killing 350 of them.
“The scenes of [Israeli] crimes in Deir Yassin are unforgettable; the massacre was horrible, terrifying and unbelievable,” Mohsen Mustafa, a resident of Ramallah, said, affirming that the Zionist gangs ripped open the bellies of pregnant women.
“The timing of the massacre was preplanned, and led to the displacement of the Palestinian people due to the passivity of the Arab media at the time,” Mustafa opined.
“The massacre happened two weeks after the signing of a peace treaty at the request of chiefs of Jewish settlements near the village,” he noted.
“The massacre was horrific, but unfortunately it recurs, somehow, in the camps of the West Bank, Syria, and Lebanon these days,” Mohamed Hasayneh, a Palestinian citizen from Askar refugee camp in Nablus said.
Illegal Israeli settlers uproot 300 Palestinian olive trees near Ramallah
RAMALLAH, (PIC) + -
Illegal Israeli settlers late on Sunday evening uprooted 300 olive trees from Palestinian lands near the central occupied West Bank province of Ramallah.
Palestinian farmer Ali al-Haj, from Ramallah’s eastern town of Mikhmas, said hordes of Israeli settlers crept into the area late at night and cut down some 300 olive trees from Palestinian cultivated lands.
Al-Haj added that olive trees were planted some 40 years ago and have been serving as the only source of income for local land owners.
In al-Haj’s terms, Israeli settlers have often attempted to grab Palestinian land lots in the area in favor of illegal settlement construction.
84 illegal Israeli settlers, escorted by police officers, stormed on Sunday morning holy al-Aqsa Mosque.
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC) + -
84 illegal Israeli settlers, escorted by police officers, stormed on Sunday morning holy al-Aqsa Mosque.
A horde of Israeli settlers broke into al-Aqsa Mosque via the Maghareba Gate as part of the morning break-in shift that concluded at 10:30 a.m.
At the same time, the Israeli forces banned 20 Palestinians from al-Aqsa Mosque for periods of up to six months.
Over recent weeks, Israeli settlers stepped up calls for mass break-ins at al-Aqsa—Muslims’ third holiest site—to mark the Jewish holiday of Passover. Keywords : Aqsa MosqueIsraeli settlers
Palestinian member of so-called Israeli parliament, Basel Ghattas, sentenced to two years in prison for smuggling cell phones to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails
NAZARETH, (PIC) + -
Joint (Arab) List lawmaker Basel Ghattas was sentenced by an Israeli court on Sunday to two years in prison and a 120,000 shekel fine, when the court accepted a plea bargain leading to his conviction for smuggling cell phones to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.
The Beer Saba' Magistrate’s Court accepted the plea bargain reached between Israeli prosecutors and MK Ghattas, who was convicted of exploiting his position to sneak cell phones and notes to Palestinian detainees.
After accepting the deal, the court handed down a two-year prison term to Ghattas, as well as a 120,000 shekel fine. His sentence will begin on July 2, according to the court ruling.
The conviction was found to carry moral turpitude, meaning he will be barred from serving in the Knesset for seven years after completing his sentence.
Despite accepting the plea deal, the Israeli judge Itay Bresler-Gonen said the sentence Ghattas received was “easy” and a “deviation” compared to the sentences received by others for similar allegations.
Ghattas came under criminal investigation after being caught on prison surveillance video passing envelopes to Palestinian prisoners in January. Shortly after, he had been sentenced to house arrest. Ghattas resigned from the Knesset last month.
According to observers, Ghattas was being persecuted by the Israeli authorities as part of a crackdown on Arab members of the Knesset.
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) open fire at Palestinian farmers in al-Fakhari town, in southern Gaza Strip
KHAN YOUNIS, (PIC) + -
The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) on Sunday evening opened fire at Palestinian farmers in al-Fakhari town, in southern Gaza Strip.
Reporting from the blockaded Gaza Strip, a PIC news correspondent said Israeli patrols deployed at a military watchtower east of Khan Younis attacked Palestinian farmers in al-Fakhari town with gunfire.
Sometime earlier, an Israeli military patrol in eastern Rafah claimed it was targeted with gunfire.
The attack is another violation of the ceasefire deal struck with the Palestinian resistance in the wake of Israel’s military offensive on the besieged coastal enclave of Gaza in the summer of 2014.
Army occupation soldiers njures Nine Palestinians In Kufur Qaddoum
April 8, 2017,12:19 AM IMEMC News
Israeli occupation soldiers attacked, Friday, the weekly protest in Kufur Qaddoum town, in the northern West Bank governorate of Qalqilia, wounding two Palestinians, and causing seven others to suffer the severe effects of teargas inhalation.
Morad Eshteiwy, the media coordinator of the Popular Committee in Kufur Qaddoum, said the soldiers invaded the town, and fired rubber-coated steel bullets, and gas bombs, at the protestors.
He added the two young men were mildly wounded after being shot with rubber-coated steel bullets, while five others suffered the severe effects of teargas inhalation.
The protest marked the Palestinian Child’s Day, and was attended by dozens of residents, including many children, who carried signs calling for a safe childhood, and to be able to live in peace and dignity without the constant threat of the Israeli occupation, ongoing violations and its illegal colonies.
Deir Yassin Remembered
Sequence of Events:
PCHR Report: One Palestinian civilian killed, 22 wounded by Israeli forces this week
April 7, 2017 1:59 PM PCHR Gaza
In its Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territories for the week of 30 March – 05 April 2017, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) found that Israeli forces continued systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories. Israeli forces killed a Palestinian from Nablus in occupied Jerusalem. 22 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children and a journalist, were wounded.
Israeli attacks in the West Bank:
During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child from Nablus in Jerusalem’s Old City. Meanwhile, they wounded 22 other civilians, including 3 children and a photojournalist.
In a new crime of using excessive force, on 01 April 2017, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child, Ahmed Ghazal (17), from Nablus, after stabbing settlers on al-Wad Street in Jerusalem’s Old City. They chased the above-mentioned child, who fled towards the entry of a small building. The Israeli forces then fired around 25 bullets at him from a close distance, so Ghazal immediately died. Eyewitnesses emphasized that the shooting occurred immediately after they raided the building, so they could have abducted the child, given that the building is small and was completely surrounded. Moreover, there was only one exit.
In the same context, on 30 March 2017, 16 civilians, including 2 children, were wounded when dozens of Palestinian civilians and human rights defenders organized a peaceful protest commemorating the Earth Day in Salman Mount, south of Nablus, and planted olive trees in a land threatened of confiscation. Two of the wounded persons were hit with live bullets while the rest were hit with metal bullets.
On the same day, a 25-year-old civilian was hit with a bullet to the left thigh when Israeli forces moved into Tubas to carry out an abduction campaign. Following the shooting, a number of civilians protested against the soldiers.
On 31 March 2017, a 14-year-old child was wounded when Israeli forces stationed at the southern entrance to Ni’lin village, west of Ramallah, opened fire at him. They then abducted the child and took him to a hospital in Israel.
On the same day, Israeli forces wounded 3 civilians, including a photojournalist in Palestine TV while participating in Kafr Qadoum protest, north of Qalqilya.
On 05 April 2017, Akram al-Atrash (23) was hit with 3 bullets to the shoulder, hand and chest when Israeli undercover units dressed like Palestinians “Mosta’arbeen” sneaked into al-Dheishah refugee camp, south of Bethlehem to carry out an abduction campaign.
In the context of house demolitions, the Israeli Municipality vehicles demolished 3 residential facilities, walls and an agricultural room in Za’im village, east of the city, under the pretext of non-licensing. Those facilities are comprised of 3 buildings, which include 16 apartments; two of which were inhabited, 8 were ready for housing and 6 were under construction. Moreover, the bulldozers demolished an agricultural room and walls surrounding 3 plots of lands. It should be mentioned that the two inhabited apartments used to shelter 11 persons.
In the same context, Hafez al-Rajabi self-demolished his house on the same day in Beit Hanina village, north of East occupied Jerusalem, upon a decision by the Israeli municipality, in order to avoid paying the demolition costs to the municipality staff. The 120-square-meter house was built 15 years ago and sheltered a family of 7 members, including 4 children.
in the same context, Fayez and Soliman ‘Abdel Latif Ja’abis was forced to self-demolishe their houses in al-Mukaber Mount village, southeast of occupied Jerusalem, upon a decision by the Israeli municipality. The two houses were built on an area of 150 square meters 3 years ago and sheltered two families of 16 members, including 12 children.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 57 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 11 ones into occupied Jerusalem and its suburbs. During those incursions, Israeli forces abducted at least 73 Palestinian civilians, including 16 children. Twenty-three of them, including 11 children, were abducted in occupied Jerusalem.
Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip:
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces continued to open fire at the farmers in the border areas.
In the Gaza Strip, as part of targeting the border areas, on 03 April 2017, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence between Israel and the Gaza Strip, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at the agricultural lands in al-Fokhari and Khuza’ah villages. No casualties were reported.
On 04 April 2017, Israeli planes sprayed crop-killing pesticides on the agricultural lands to the west of the border fence between Israel and Gaza Strip, northeast of al-Qararah village, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. Farmers there emphasized that they saw small planes flying low in the area. The farmers added that those planes started spraying pesticides over 300-400 meters of the lands to the west of the fence before moving to the north to the eastern side of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip.
Israeli settlement activities:
Israeli settlers continued to carry out attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property this week.
On 30 March 2017, Israeli forces levelled Palestinian lands belonging to the Deir Balout Municpality, west of Salfit. Local sources said that the Israeli municipality bulldozers levelled so far 20 dunums out of 72 dunums intended to be levelled. those lands belong to the families of Samarah, ‘Abdel Rahman and ‘Abdullah and were levelled for the interest of expanding “Ariel” settlement and its industrial area.
On 03 April 2017, Israeli forces uprooted 135 olive trees from Qana Valley lands belonging to the Deir Istiya Municipality, northwest of Salfit, under the pretext that “they are obstacles in the Natural Reserve.” A 35-meter retaining wall was also demolished under the pretext of changing the area.
In the same context, on 27 March 2017, a group of settlers from Gel’ad settlement established on the Palestinian lands of Jeet village, northeast of Qalqilya, attacked farmers from the abovementioned village while ploughing their land there.
Israeli attacks against non-violent demonstrations:
Israeli troops engaged in an excessive use of force against peaceful demonstrations protesting settlement activities and the construction of the annexation wall.
At approximately 12:00, on Thursday, 30 March 2017, on Land day, dozens of Palestinian civilians and human rights defenders organized a peaceful demonstration. They moved from Madama village council and made their way to al-Qa’dat area in Suleiman Mount, south of the village, which is threatened of confiscation, as they carried olive seedlings. The civilians were surprised with the Israeli forces stationed on the top of the abovementioned mount, which is about 500 meters away from the land they intended to plant. When the civilians began planting the olive seedlings, the Israeli soldiers fired live bullets and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. As a result, 16 civilians, including 2 children, were wounded. Two civilians were hit with live bullets while the others were hit with metal bullets. Among those wounded were Dr. Ghassan Hamdan (54), Director of Medical Relief in Palestine in Nablus, sustained a metal bullet wound to the back; Derar Mohammed Husain Abu Omer (53), working in the Palestinian Agricultural Relief, was hit with a metal bullet to the right leg; Khaled Hasan Mohammed Soboh (59), official in Agricultural Relief, was hit with a metal bullet to the left leg sustaining fracture, Amin Mohammed Amin Nassar (12) sustained a metal bullet wound to the left leg and Hafeth Mohammed Hafeth Nassar (12) was hit with a metal bullet to the leg.
At approximately 13:00 on the same day, dozens of Palestinian civilians, activists from the Hebron Defense Committee and International and Israeli human rights defenders organized a peaceful protest to plant trees in Wad al-Husain area, east of Hebron, on which the Israeli authorities established “Kiryat Arba” The protest was organized to commemorate the 41st anniversary of Earth Day. The protestors carried slogans titled “United against confiscation of lands in al-Jalil, al-Naqab and al-Muthalath”. The soldiers surrounded the area and attacked and beat the protesters, claiming that the abovementioned area was declared as a closed military zone. The Israeli soldiers then abducted 4 activists from the Popular Resistance and took them to a detention center in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem. The abducted activists were identified as ‘Anan Samir Maswadah, an activist in the Hebron Defense Committee; Bade’I Mohammed Adeeb Duwaik, Coordinator of the “human rights Defenders” Gathering; Younis Mohammed ‘Arar, Head of the Palestinian Committee against the Annexation Wall in Hebron and Eshaq Abdul Hamid al-Khatib. It should be noted that the Israeli authorities informed the lawyers of the abducted activists that they were abducted on charges of being in a closed military zone.
At approximately 12:40 on Friday, 31 March 2017, Palestinian civilians and International activists organized a protest in Kufur Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They made their way towards the eastern entrance of the village in protest against closing that entrance since the beginning of al-Aqsa Intifada with an iron gate. When the protesters approached the entrance, Israeli forces fired rubber-coated metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, 3 civilians were wounded, including Bashar Mahmoud Nazal Saleh (40), a photojournalist at Palestine TV Channel, sustained a metal bullet to the right leg. Moreover, several civilians suffered tear gas inhalation, and the Israeli bulldozers damaged the main water pipe of the village.
Following the Friday prayer, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized demonstrations in Bil’in and Nil’in villages, west of Ramallah, and in Nabi Saleh village, northwest of the city, protesting against the annexation wall and settlement activities. Israeli forces forcibly dispersed the protestors, firing live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs. They also chased the protesters into olive fields and between houses. As a result, many of the protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises due to being beaten up by the Israeli soldiers.
Recommendations to the international community:
Due to the number and severity of Israeli human rights violations this week, the PCHR made several recommendations to the international community. Among these were a recommendation that the United Nations use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination, through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
In addition, the PCHR called upon the United Nations to provide international protection to Palestinians in the oPt, and to ensure the non-recurrence of aggression against the Occupied Palestinian Territories, especially the Gaza Strip.
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