The Palestine Brief (9): After 90 days on Hunger strike, detainee in serious condition, Report: Israel’s siege suffocates Gaza, Tests hint at possible Arafat poisoning


After 90 days on Hunger strike, detainee in serious condition

Report: Israel’s siege suffocates Gaza

Tests hint at possible Arafat poisoning

VIDEO: border police attack child in Hebron

Tawtheeq: IOF launched 58 deadly strikes on Gaza last month

A weekly report published by the Center for Political and Development Studies (CPDS), Gaza on the latest developments in Palestine.

July 8, 2012

  • VIDEO: Border Police attack child in Hebron

Video footage released by the Israeli human rights organization B’tselem on Monday, reveals an Israeli border police officer attacking a Palestinian child. The incident occurred on Friday, June 29, near the Ibrahimi Mosque in the Old City of Hebron.

The victim of the attack was a nine-year old child by the name of Abdul-Rahman Burkan. The footage was taken by a B’Tselem volunteer.  The Israeli organization reported that it filed a complaint over the incident with the Israeli army and police on Friday.

  • Tawtheeq: IOF launched 58 deadly strikes on Gaza last month

The central commission for documentation and pursuit of Israeli war criminals-Tawtheeq said the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) bombed the Gaza Strip last June more than 58 times during which 19 Palestinians were killed.

Tawtheeq added in a press release on its website that the Israeli aerial and artillery attacks led to the injury of more than 77 others and caused severe material damage to property. The Israeli navy during that month attacked Palestinian fishermen off the coast ofGaza seven times and kidnapped 16 of them, while the land troops carried out several limited incursions into different areas ofGaza and damaged agricultural lands and property.

The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) demolished nine homes and six wells in different West Bankvillages, and issued dozens of demolition orders.[1]

  • Israeli Attacks on Palestinian Fishermen in the Gaza Sea

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) documented 92 attacks launched by the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) against Palestinian fishermen in the first half of this year, including 54 incidents in which the IOF fired at fishermen and 16 incidents that led to the arrest of 43 fishermen, in addition to 18 incidents in which boats were confiscated and four incidents of damaging and confiscating fishing equipment. PCHR documented 38 violations perpetrated by the IOF against Palestinian fishermen, including 23 incidents in which the IOF fired at fishermen.  In addition, the IOF arrested 13 fishermen in four incidents and confiscated seven fishing boats and equipment.

  • Al-Aqsa foundation: Secret excavations underway in Al-Maghariba ramp

The Al-Aqsa foundation for endowment and heritage said the Israeli occupation authority (IOA) is carrying out nowadays secret excavations and demolitions of historical ruins in the area of Al-Maghariba Gate, one of the Al-Aqsa Mosque’s entrances. In a press release on Sunday, the Al-Aqsa foundation accused the IOA of stealing historical stones from Al-Maghariba Gate ramp and the remaining ruins near it.

  • Another Racist Israeli Move

The Israeli government’s decision to deport 25,000 African migrants, dubbed “illegal infiltrators”, and to detain others without trial for as long as three years has come as a shock to many of Israel’s fans in the West.

The firebombing last Monday of aJerusalemflat occupied by Eritreans has deepened unease, but this incident was only one in a string of attacks on African homes, shops and schools, the majority in south Tel Aviv where many migrants dwell in poor neighborhoods.

Israeli PM Benjamin Natanyahu has warned that “illegal infiltrators flooding the country” are threatening the Jewish identity of the state, as well as its security. “If we don’t stop their entry, the problem that currently stands at 60,000 could grow to 600,000, and that [would jeopardize] our existence as a Jewish and democratic state,” he asserted.[2]

·         Settlers Attack Child InJerusalem

The WadiHilwehInformationCenterin Jerusalemreported that a Palestinian child was attacked, last Thursday, by a group of extremist settlers in Silwan town, in occupied East Jerusalem. The center said that the child, Areen Ad-Dameery, was assaulted and beaten by several settlers, students of the religious school in the area. The child suffered concussions and bruises to various parts of her body.

Her father said that Areen also suffered an anxiety attack, and is afraid to leave her home, fearing addition attacks by the settlers.

·         Knesset moves to force national service on Palestinians in Israel

A draft law set to be enacted at the beginning of next month could make it compulsory for Palestinians living in present-dayIsraelto undertake national service, despite the state’s system of discrimination against Palestinian citizens.

Under preparation by a committee in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, the law would introduce penalties for young people holding Israeli citizenship who refuse to comply. The proposed law is the latest in a string of precedent-setting discriminatory legislation passed by the Knesset impacting the rights of Palestinians in Israel, including the Nakba law, which criminalizes commemorations of the 1948 dispossession of historic Palestine, and the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, which prevents a Palestinian citizen from living with a spouse from the occupied West Bank or Gaza Strip.[3]

·         IOF Invades Rafah, Uproots Farmlands

On Tuesday at dawn, a number of armored Israeli military vehicles, accompanied by military bulldozers, invaded an area east of Rafah city, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, and bulldozed Palestinian farmlands.

Local sources reported that the military vehicles came from the Sofa military base, east of Rafah.

  • Palestinian prisoners: treat us as war prisoners

Palestinian political prisoners in Israel’s jails peruse to be treated as war prisoners in accordance with the 3rd Geneva Convention of 1979. “We will start the battle of battles in the Israeli jails in an attempt to  be treated as prisoners of war,” a Palestinian prisoners toldFrance 24. The prisoners sent a letter to the acting chief of the PA Mahmoud Abbas in which they asserted that they are planning “a fierce battle”, aims to treat them as war prisoners. “All options are open,” they concluded.

  • After 90 Days on Hunger Strike, Detainee in Serious Condition

Diabetic Palestinian prisoner Akram Rikhawi has been on a hunger strike for 90 days and is at imminent risk of dying. According to the World Medical Association, in most cases death occurs between 42nd and 72nd days of hunger strike. Rikhawi suffers from various chronic conditions: diabetes, asthma, osteoporosis, kidney problems, deterioration of his eye sight, high cholesterol, and immune deficiency.

  • Tests hint at possible Arafat poisoning

Traces of polonium have been detected in the belongings of late Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, a Swiss research laboratory has confirmed. A television report says his widow wants his body exhumed for further tests. Tests were carried out on biological samples taken from the Arafat’s belongings given to his wife Suha by the military hospital in Pariswhere he died, according to Francois Bochud, head of the Instituteof Radiation Physicsat LausanneUniversity. “The conclusion was that we did find some significant polonium that was present in these samples,” Mr Bochud told the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera satellite channel.[4]

  • Israel‘s Siege Suffocates Gaza

According to a report published by the society of the owners of petrol stations inGaza, the daily demand of the inhabitants of theGazastrip of fuel is350,000 liters,120,000 litersof Benz, and 350 tons of manufactured fuel to runGazasole power plant. The amount of fuel entering theGazastrip decreased sharply after the decision of the Israeli government in November 2007 to decrease it to90,000 liters, which means 74% decrease. Benz decreased to25,000 liters, which means 79% decrease. Gas decreased to 1000 tons, which means 71%  decrease. All concerned sectors, including government and smugglers had to find alternative solutions to secure the amount of fuel and gas that the Gaza Strip needed, mainly via the tunnels connectingGazawithEgypt.

The effect of siege on water

The Gaza Strip has been suffering from a lack of water and the inability to control it. The Underground water is the only resource to provide the Gaza Strip with water. Some 170 million liters of underground water are being consumed a year, without any marked increase of alternative natural water which comes from rain, which amounts to 120 million liters of water.

The underground water is polluted as a result of pouring sewage without treatment, chemicals and hard disposal. Gazans are prevented from making use of the valleys water by the building of dams and digging of wells at the northern eastern borders ofGaza.

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