Update on the Protection of Civilians in Israel/Palestine
Each week, the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs publishes a Protection of Civilians report. The current report covers the period between November 3 – 9, 2015. To view the complete version of the report, including a series of charts with the main indicators, please click here.
Latest Developments (outside of the reporting period):
- According to initial reports by local sources, during a raid at Al Ahli Hospital in Hebron City in the early morning hours of 12 November, under-cover Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian man and arrested a patient being treated in the hospital.
- Israeli forces shot and killed two Palestinians, including a 16 year old child, during two separate alleged stabbing attempts on 10 November in East Jerusalem and at the Wadi Nar checkpoint (Jerusalem governorate). On the same day, two Palestinian children were shot and injured after stabbing and injuring an Israeli security guard on the light rail train in Pisgat Ze’ev settlement in East Jerusalem.
- The wave of violence across the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) continued during the reporting period (3 and 9 November) resulting in six Palestinian and one Israeli fatalities, and another 573 Palestinian and 13 Israeli injuries. Between 1 October and 9 November, 77 Palestinians and nine Israelis were killed, and 8,135 Palestinians and at least 128 Israelis were injured in the oPt and Israel. The number of Palestinian fatalities among West Bank Palestinians since 1 October equals the number of fatalities in the whole of 2014 (53), while the number of injuries during this period ( 7,040) already exceeded the equivalent figure in the whole of 2014 (5868).
- During the reporting period, five Palestinians and an Israeli border policeman were killed and three Palestinians and at least 11 Israeli soldiers and settlers, including a child, were injured in the course of eight alleged and confirmed stabbing, ramming and shooting attacks by Palestinians. The Palestinian fatalities include two women, one of whom was 72-years-old, and three men. The circumstances of several incidents are disputed. All incidents occurred in the West Bank including five in the Hebron governorate (in Hallhul, in the H1 and H2 areas of Hebron city, Beit ‘Einun, and at the Gush Etzion junction), two at the Jaljuliya checkpoint in Qalqiliya governorate, one at the Za’tara checkpoint in Nablus governorate, one incident at the entrance to the settlement of Betar Illit in Bethlehem governorate and one incident on Road 60, near the Geva Binyamin settlement.
- Israeli forces shot dead a 23-year-old Palestinian near the perimeter fence surrounding Gaza, east of Khan Younis, during a demonstration involving stone-throwing at an Israeli observation post. Another 570 Palestinians, including at least 107 children, two women and one on-duty Palestinian Red Crescent Society medical staff, were injured in this and multiple other protests and clashes with Israeli forces across the oPt. Of these injuries six per cent were recorded in the Gaza Strip. At least eleven percent of the injuries in the West Bank and 62 percent of those in the Gaza Strip were caused by live ammunition, while most of the remainder were caused by rubber bullets or tear gas inhalation. Nearly 30 percent of the Palestinian injuries occurred next to the Khaduri University (Tulkrarem) involving mainly students that clashed with Israeli forces permanently stationed next to the university premises.
- On 5 November, Egyptian forces shot dead an 18-year-old Palestinian who was sailing southwest of Rafah. According to the fishing syndicate in Gaza, the youth was fishing on Palestinian waters at the time of the incident.
- Stricter search and checking procedures at West Bank checkpoints, resulting in long delays and impeding access to services and livelihoods, continued, alongside an intensification of restrictions in the Hebron governorate. The latter recorded the highest number of ad-hoc “flying” checkpoints (32 out of 130 ) during the week, in addition to the intermittent blocking of three entrances to Hebron city; the entrances to Bani Na’im, Wadi al Jouz, and Dura villages; Al Fawwar Refugee Camp; and the junction connecting Sa’ir and Hebron to road 60. Additionally, in Hebron city, Israeli forces banned the access of people between 15 and 25 years of age to some streets in the H2 area of Hebron City, except to those who reside in this area and underwent prior registration.
- In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces converted a road block in Ras al Amud area to a checkpoint, and removed a checkpoint placed since 9 October 2015 in At Tur area near the Augusta Victoria Hospital which significantly hindered access to the hospital, and the main checkpoint as well two roadblocks in Um Tuba area. As of 9 November, 26 obstacles were in place, directly impacting eight neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem with an estimated population of 134,000.
- Israeli forces carried out over 122 search and arrest operations across the West Bank and arrested 190 Palestinians, with the highest number of arrests recorded in the governorate (28 per cent) followed by the Jerusalem governorate (25 per cent). Also during the week, Israeli forces forcibly entered and caused damage in the premises of three NGO’s (Adwar for Social Changes, the Islamic Charitable Society and Youth against Settlements in Hebron governorate) and confiscated computers, cameras and other equipment.
- In the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Jabal Al Mukabbir, the Israeli authorities demolished two non-residential structures for lack of Israeli-issued building permits, affecting 21 Palestinians. This brings to 68 the number of structures demolished in East Jerusalem since the beginning of the year. Also in East Jerusalem, on similar grounds, the Israeli authorities issued a demolition order against a mosque serving around 5,000 people in the Silwan area.
- On two occasions during the week, and for the third time since the beginning of November, 13 Palestinian families living in the Humsa al Buqai’a herding community (Tubas), including 46 children, were displaced from their homes for six, and 18 hours, to make way for Israeli military training. Humsa al Buqai’a is one of 38 Palestinian Bedouin and herding communities (5000 residents) located in areas designated by the Israeli authorities as a closed zone for military training (“firing zone”). Many of these communities face repeated displacement due to military training.
- At least four Israeli settler attacks against Palestinians and their property were recorded in the H2 area of Hebron city, including the physical assault of a 15-year-old boy by a group of settlers, and, on three separate occasions, stone-throwing at Palestinian houses and threatening of families in the area of Jabal Johar, and Tel Rumeida by settlers from the Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba’, in the presence of Israeli forces.
- Five Palestinian attacks on Israeli settlers and their property were reported, in addition to the above stabbing, ramming and shooting incidents. All incidents involved stone throwing, and in one incident, the throwing of Molotov cocktails, at Israeli-plated vehicles in Hebron, Bethlehem, Jerusalem and Ramallah governorates, resulting in injury to three Israeli settlers.
- A rocket, fired by Palestinian members of an armed group landed in southern Israel with no injuries or damages reported. The following day, Israeli forces fired at least one missile at a site belonging to an armed group, with no injuries reported. Also, on two separate occasions, Israeli forces entered Gaza and carried out levelling and excavation activities.
- The Egyptian-controlled Rafah Crossing was closed in both directions during the reporting period. The Crossing has been closed, including for humanitarian assistance, since 24 October 2014, except for 37 days of partial openings.