[News] Israeli revenge demolitions leave 2 dead, dozens homeless

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Fri Nov 20 16:29:18 EST 2015


  Israeli revenge demolitions leave 2 dead, dozens homeless

Shadi Hatem
November 20, 2015

Israeli occupation forces wrought death, injury and destruction this 
week as they carried out revenge demolitions of Palestinian homes and 
fired on protesters.

More than 85 Palestinians have been killed in escalated violence since 1 
October, dozens in what human rights organizations and international 
monitors have condemned 
as summary executions.

Sixteen Israelis were slain in the same period.

More than 9,000 Palestinians and 133 Israelis were injured, according 
<http://www.ochaopt.org/poc10november-16november-2015.aspx> to the 
United Nations monitoring group OCHA.

On Thursday, a Palestinian and two Israelis were killed in a shooting 
attack near the Gush Etzion settlement bloc in the occupied West Bank.

According <http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.687133> to Israel’s 
/Haaretz/, a Palestinian driver opened fire toward cars near the 
settlement of Alon Shvut, killing three people.

The alleged assailant was arrested after he crashed his car into another 

Those killed in the attack have been identified 
<http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4728385,00.html> as Shadi 
Arafa, a 24-year-old Palestinian from the West Bank city of Hebron; Ezra 
Schwartz, an 18-year-old US citizen; and Yaakov Don, a 49-year-old West 
Bank settler.

Earlier, two Israelis – 51-year-old Reuven Aviram and Aharon Yesayev, 32 
– were killed in a stabbing attack at an office building 
<https://www.rt.com/news/322708-tel-aviv-stabbing-rt/> in Tel Aviv.

The alleged assailant was taken into custody. He was identified as Riad 
al-Masalma, a Palestinian from Dura village near Hebron.

That occupied West Bank city has borne the brunt of recent Israeli 
violence, including 29 killings 
<http://www.ochaopt.org/poc10november-16november-2015.aspx> since the 
start of October.

Last Friday, two Israeli settlers – a father and his adult son – were 
killed <http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.685904> after an unknown 
assailant opened fire on their car in southern West Bank.

    Killings and revenge demolitions

Thursday’s killings follow a wave of Israeli violence against Palestinians.

Israeli forces blew up six homes in the occupied West Bank belonging to 
families of Palestinians who allegedly committed attacks against Israelis.

At least 16 additional homes in the same buildings or adjacent to those 
targeted were damaged or destroyed.

The demolitions made 47 people, including 20 children, homeless, from 
both the targeted and adjacent structures, according 
<http://www.ochaopt.org/poc10november-16november-2015.aspx> to OCHA.

Israel carried out the revenge demolitions after its high court rejected 
an appeal 
by human rights organizations.

Israel claims that the policy, used exclusively against Palestinians and 
never against Jews, deters attacks, but even its army has refuted this 

OCHA affirmed that the demolitions are “a form of collective punishment 
and as such are illegal under international law.”


Shortly after midnight on 16 November, Israeli forces invaded Qalandiya 
refugee camp, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, to destroy the family 
home of Muhammad Abu Shahin.

Abu Shahin is accused – though has not been convicted – of killing an 
in the West Bank last June.

Israeli forces “called on loudspeakers to the residents of nearby 
houses, instructing them to leave their homes and move about 100 meters 
away,” the human rights group B’Tselem reported 
“When Abu Shahin’s apartment was blown up, the apartment on the floor 
below it was also damaged, as was an apartment in a nearby building that 
was home to four people, including two minors.”

Abu Shahin’s wife and children lived in the targeted house.

Palestinian residents confronted the Israeli forces invading the camp.

Israeli soldiers shot dead Laith Assad Manasra, 21, and Ahmad Abu 
al-Aish, 28, in the densely populated refugee camp.

Dozens more were injured, including 17-year-old Yousif Abu Latifa, who 
was critically wounded. Witnesses told the Ma’an News Agency 
<http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=768844> that Israeli forces 
fired tear gas at ambulances attempting to reach the wounded.

On 14 November, Israeli forces used explosives to destroy four 
apartments in Nablus <https://electronicintifada.net/tags/nablus> that 
were home to relatives of Palestinians accused, but not convicted, of 
killing two West Bank settlers on 1 October, leaving 14 people homeless, 
according to B’Tselem.

The force of the explosions destroyed six other apartments that were not 
targeted, making 16 more people homeless.

In the Ramallah-area village of Silwad 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/silwad>, Israeli forces blew up the 
home of the mother and brother of Muaz Hamad, who Israel accuses of 
killing a West Bank settler in June.

The explosion damaged eight nearby houses, according to B’Tselem.

In addition to being illegal under international law, the group says 
that Israel’s policy of punitive demolitions 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/punitive-home-demolitions> is “a 
draconian, vindictive measure directed at entire families who have done 
nothing wrong nor are they suspected of any wrongdoing.”

Another 27 Palestinians, including 12 children, were also made homeless 
as Israeli forces demolished another 17 homes and other structures in 
across West Bank, including East Jerusalem, under the pretext that they 
lacked building permits, OCHA reported 

    Killing and raids

On 17 November, Israeli forces killed 24-year-old Muhammad Saleh, from 
Aroura village, near Ramallah.

Israel stated that Saleh opened fire on a military jeep, but the 
Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) notes 
that there “was no eyewitness to confirm or deny the Israeli claim.”

In what appears to be standard practice, Israeli forces prevented 
Palestinian medics from reaching Saleh, PCHR said.

Palestinians confront Israeli forces following the funeral of Ahmad Abu 
al-Aish and Laith Manasrah, near Beit El settlement on the outskirts of 
the West Bank city of Ramallah, on 16 November.

In the last week, OCHA said more than 1,100 Palestinians, including 203 
children, were injured amid ongoing confrontations with Israeli forces 
in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Israeli forces raided almost 80 Palestinian communities in the West Bank 
and arrested more than 100 Palestinians, including 38 children, 
to PCHR.

    Slap on the wrist

Another event this week highlighted the stark contrast between the 
brutality Israel directs towards Palestinians and the impunity it 
affords its own citizens.

An Israeli Border Police officer convicted for the savage beating of 
Palestinian American teenager Tariq Abukhdeir 
was given a slap on the wrist – six weeks of community service.

The attack – in which one officer held the boy down while another 
methodically kicked and pummeled him in the head – was recorded on video 

This week two UN special rapporteurs called on Israel 
to end its policy of summary executions of Palestinians.

The independent human rights experts appointed by the UN Human Rights 
Council said that the current escalation of violence is “occurring 
within the existing context of policies and practices under the 
longstanding Israeli occupation which entail violations of Palestinian 
human rights.”

For their part, Israeli leaders continue to exploit the attacks in Paris 
by insisting that Palestinians are driven by the same motivations as the 
suspected Islamic State gunmen and bombers who killed 130 people last 

Meanwhile Israel announced plans for 454 more settler homes in occupied 
East Jerusalem, a move even Israel’s staunch allies the United States 
and Germany criticized 

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