Last week witnessed a series of Israeli violence and Palestinian popular protests which seem to be just the starting point of a relentless escalation. In just five days, four young Palestinians, each one not older than 19 years, have been violently killed during clashes, rows with the settlers, or, like the 13 year old Abd Al- Rahman Shadi Abed Allah, just because they was in the wrong place, at the wrong time. These brutal murders, together with the worsening of the ordinary policy by the Israeli government, including the enclosing of wide areas, and the blockade of the accesses to the main cities, and the “new trends”, as the demolition of the house of martyrs, or the permission granted to the soldier to shoot the stone-throwers during demonstration, could probably lead, in the following weeks, to what some already denominated as third intifada. Whether this scenario will be actualized or not, it is reasonable to assert that these last events are just the last step in a process which has lasted for more than one year, which saw the dramatic response of an exhausted Palestinian society to the constriction of the Occupation and to the alarming phenomenon of intensified Israeli ethnic cleansing.
A news report on the course of events in Jerusalem and the West Bank
From 1/10 until 5/10/2015
- Four young men had been killed during the last week: the 19 years old Muhannad Al-Halabi from Al Bireh, shot dead by the Israeli Police in Jerusalem, for having allegedly stabbed two settlers; of the same age of Muhannad, Fadi Aloun from Al- E’esawiyeh in Jerusalem was executed by the police after being hunted by settlers, while he was on his way back home from work. Another young man (18), Huthaifa Suliman from Tulkarem, had been killed by the Israeli occupation forces during clashes at the south entrance of the city in the evening. Just yesterday, Abd Al- Rahman Shadi Abed Allah, 12 years old from A’aydeh refugee camp in Bethlehem, died after a soldier shot him in the chest from one of the wall watchtowers. He was playing in front of his house.
- 503 Palestinian have been injured, 23 of the injuries were caused by live bullets. Among the injured, some are in a critical condition. 15 casualties were in Ramallah, 2 in Jerusalem, 2 in Kufr Qadum, 1 in Qalqilyia and 3 in Bethlehem.
- Some 200 attacks have been carried out in different places throughout the West Bank.
- Also raids and arrests have been widely carried out among young Palestinians in different villages.
- 4 new Israeli military divisions have been deployed in the West bank, 4000 policemen and Special Forces just in and around Jerusalem.
- Closing of Nablus entrances and enclosing of other villages with concrete cubes.
- Heavy deployment of the Israeli military on the main roads, and the setting of barriers on the roads connecting cities.
- Continuous clashes with the Israeli Occupation Forces enduring from noon up until midnight in 50 different places in Jerusalem and throughout the West Bank.
- Daily clashes with settlers on the main roads and the entrances of villages located near settlements.
- Daily raids on Al-Aqsa Mosque, and the closing of the old city for Palestinian non-residents.
- The formation of popular and protection committees in villages and neighborhoods located near settlements.
- Among those different decisions taken by Netanyahu’s government , one is to augment the usage of force against demonstrators, another one is to demolish the martyrs houses; furthermore it has decreed as legitimate the use of live bullets against protesters and ordered the reinforcement the Police Corps and the Army in Jerusalem and in the West Bank.
Since Monday morning 5/10, both Jerusalem and the West Bank have witnessed violent clashes with the Israeli forces and the settlers that lasted till late in the night. Clashes led, in the last 24 hours, to the outcomes of the martyrdom of the 12 years old Abed Allah with a bullet to the chest, 170 injured, 8 of them with live bullets and 54 with rubber bullets, 105 cases of tear gas suffocations and 3 casualties after being beaten by the Israeli forces.
The clashes with the Israeli forces have been intensified in more than 50 sites between Jerusalem and the West Bank, in villages, city entrances and in the main roads in the West Bank.
The main clashes points are:
Jerusalem: The Old City, Shu’ufat Refugee camp, Al- E’esawiyeh, Al Toor, Al- Swaneh neighborhood, Jabal Al Mukaber, shu’faat, Beit Hanina, Ras Al- Amud, Silwan, Wadi Al-Juz, Al- Thoory neighborhood, Abu Dis, Beit Deqoh and Beit Ejza.
Ramallah: Al-Balou’ district near Beit El settlement, Al- Jalazoun Refugee Camp, Qalandia Refugee camp, Beitonyiah-Ofar Prison, Atara’s checkpoint at the North entrance of Birzeit, Silwad, and sporadic clashes in Ramallah’s villages like Al-Nabi Saleh, Saffa, Aboud and Nil’in.
Bethlehem: Al-Qubeh Area at the north entrance, A’aideh and A’azeh Refugee camps, Al-Khader village- West entrance, Hussan and Taqou’ villages in the East and West parts of the city.
Hebron: The entrances of Se’eir and Halhoul towns, Kharsa crossroad, Bab- Al Zawyieh inside the city, Beit Omaar crossroad, Al- Fowar and Al- Aroub refugee camps and the entrances of Yatah and Dourah towns in the east and south of the city.
Nablus: The south entrance-Howarah, villages in south Nablus like Boreen ,Madma, A’qraba and Qesrah.
Jenin: Villages in the south of city of Jenin.
Tulkarem: The Chemical Factories area in the south entrance of the city.
Qalqilyah: The eastern entrance of the city, Kufr Qadum, Jetit, Azoun and Jayous.
In the wake of the killing of the two settlers near the settlement of Itamar east of Nablus on Friday 2/10/2015, the occupation forces announced Nablus as a closed military zone and began wide incursions and harassments in the villages east of Nablus. A large group of settlers also have cut the main roads and attacked the Palestinian villages in the Nablus area including Hawara, Burin and Awarta and smashed dozens of Palestinian vehicles on the main road near Hawara check point; among them was an ambulance belonging to the Red Crescent. Settler attacks spread to a relevant number of villages in the West bank, most notably is the attempted burning of a Palestinian familys house on the northern entrance of Al-Bireh city near the settlement of Beit El. Following these attacks, a wide range of clashes have broken out between the occupation forces and the settlers on one hand, and the Palestinians on the other, in different areas of the West Bank, which lasted until late hours and led to the injury of dozens of Palestinians. Jerusalem witnessed the most violent clashes where demonstrations swept across most of its neighborhoods in the Old City, Al-Issawia, Al-Toor, Al- Siwanna neighborhoods, Shufa'at regufee camp, Beit Hanina, Ras AL- Amoud, Shu’fat and Jabal Al-Mukaber, especially after the closure of Al-Aqsa mosque in front of the worshipers, and the abuse of women who were severely beaten inside. In the south of Nablus, a large number of settlers from the Yitzhar settlement, backed by the occupation forces, has attacked the city of Burin where clashes have broken out at the entrances of the village and its outskirts, which saw the supportive intervention of citizens from the neighbouring villages .
In Ramallah, clashes broke out at the northern entrance of the city where the settlers besieged a Palestinian house near the settlement and began smashing windows preparing to throw fire bombs inside as they did in Douma. Residents of the nearby area fought these attempts and the confrontations continued with the Occupation Army and the settlers at the crossroads of Beit El and the entrance of Al-Jalazoun refugee camp until late hours of the night, and it spread to the cities of Deir Nitham, Nabi Saleh, Atara and Aboud. The next day, Saturday 3/10/2015, a young boy Muhannad Halabi, 19, accused of killing two settlers and wounded another two in the Old City in response to the events of the previous days, was shot dead by the Police. Clashes broke out in most of the neighborhoods of Jerusalem city and its surroundings as a response to the killing of Halabi by the occupation forces, and spread to overall confrontations against the occupation forces and the settlers who began a massive attack on the citizens in various parts of the West Bank, from Hebron to Jenin. A report issued by the Red Crescent society has confirmed that the outcome of casualties of the last two days 2-3/10 in the West Bank and Occupied Jerusalem until the middle of the night, amounted to 395 injuries in the last 24 hours. Statistics have clarified that the number of injured by live ammunition was 32, while 118 were injured with rubber bullets, 234 by teargas and 11 were severely beaten. The National Forces and the Popular Committees then announced a general strike for Tuesday, 6th October, as a widening in the circle of confrontations is expected to be launched in Silwan and Jabal al Mukaber.