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Palestinian Police Destroy Marijuana Plants

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    Israel uses Palestinian teens as human shields 3/10/2007 AJP and agencies http://www.aljazeera.com/me.asp?service_ID=13091 Sister of Palestinian Mohammed
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 2, 2007
      Israel uses Palestinian teens as human shields
      AJP and agencies

      Sister of Palestinian Mohammed al-Galban, who was killed by Israeli
      soldiers, mourns his funeral

      The Israeli human rights group B'Tselem accused the Israeli Occupation
      Forces (IOF) of using Palestinian teenagers as human shields (a
      military and political term describing the presence of civilians in or
      around combat targets to deter an enemy from attacking those targets,
      according to Wikipedia) during an operation in the West Bank city of

      According to B'Tselem, Israeli soldiers took two Palestinians, a boy
      and a girl, aged between 11 and 15 years old, while conducting a
      military offensive last week, asking them to enter houses in which
      they were searching for fighters and weapons, before they raid them.

      International law considers the use of human shields a war crime.

      Article 51 of the Geneva Conventions, "Protocol Additional to the
      Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 (Protocol 1)," prohibits the use
      of civilians as human shields "to render certain points or areas
      immune from military operations, in particular in attempts to shield
      military objectives from attacks or to shield, favour or impede
      military operations." And Article 52 clearly prohibits attacking
      civilian infrastructure unless it is of military value, and Article 54
      prohibits attacking food and water equipment, unless it is of military
      value and does not cause civilians to starve or be forced to move.

      Also the Human Rights Watch states that "civilians acting as human
      shields, whether voluntary or not, contribute indirectly to the war
      capability of a state. Their actions do not pose a direct risk to
      opposing forces. Because they are not directly engaged in hostilities
      against an adversary, they retain their civilian immunity from
      attack." However it notes that the use by a state of human shields,
      whether voluntary or not, is a violation of international law, citing
      Protocol I of the First Geneva Convention.[21]

      Israel has previous instances in the occupied Palestinian territories
      where it violated all above mentioned articles

      Also the use of human shields has been ruled illegal by Israel's
      Supreme Court and is prohibited by military orders.

      Earlier an Associated Press cameraman captured a photo of an incident
      that took place on Feb. 25, where Sameh Amira, 24, appeared used by
      Israeli troops as they raided apartments in the city's casbah, or Old

      Amid, Amira's 15-year-old cousin, told B'Tselem that he was used by
      the soldiers as well as Mr. Amira during military operations were they
      were forced to come along as the Israelis searched three houses,
      forced to enter rooms ahead of the Israelis and empty cupboards and
      open windows to make sure there're no bombs that would risk the
      Israelis' lives.

      The rights group also quoted Jihan Dadush, 11, as saying that members
      of the Israeli army kidnapped her from her home three days later, and
      asked her to open the door of a neighboring apartment they sought to

      B'Tselem spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said that

      "The army must investigate what happened and act accordingly -- try
      people, make sure the rules are clarified and understand where the
      failures were, in order to prevent this from happening again," she said.

      * Discrimination against Arab Israelis

      Meanwhile, The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial
      Discrimination demanded the Israeli army ease roadblocks and other
      restrictions on Palestinians as well as control settlers' violence and
      hate speech.

      The committee, which examined the records of 13 countries at a
      four-week meeting in Geneva, said that the IOF trains in Palestinian
      villages, stressing that Israel's security measures must be
      re-calibrated to avoid discrimination against Arab Israelis or
      Palestinians living in the occupied territories.

      It further warned against the unjust distribution of water resources,
      also criticizing the "denial of the right of many Palestinians" to
      return to their land.

      • Violence reniewed

      Palestinian hospital officials reported Saturday that the Israeli
      occupation forces shot dead a Palestinian man near the Gaza border on
      Friday, adding that they had retrieved the man's body, which they said
      was riddled with bullets.

      The Israeli military repeated same claims it uses each time it kills
      Palestinians, arguing that the soldiers opened fire at the man after
      two Palestinians came close to the Israeli-built border fence.

      "The force suspected them of trying to plant an explosive device,"
      Israeli military spokeswoman said.

      "The force fired at them and identified hitting one of them," she added.

      "We have called on Palestinians many times not to come towards the fence."

      No weapons were found at the scene of the incident.


      Palestinians arrested after Israeli settlers attack them
      A 48 year old Palestinian man was walking home about 11 am when he was
      attacked with stones by a 14 year old settler outside the Israeli
      settlement of Beit Hadassa. Three other settler youths about the same
      age supported this attack. The soldier on duty intervened and told the
      settlers to leave. The Palestinian's 14 year old son and his friend
      were approaching from the checkpoint and saw the trouble. As they
      arrived a settler stopped his car, jumped out, grabbed the son and
      pushed him up against a car. He managed to escape and ran towards the
      checkpoint. A police car stopped and arrested the Palestinian...



      Israeli forces violate international law, attack ambulance driver

      Israeli forces severely beat an ambulance driver in the northern West
      Bank, reports the Jenin branch of the Union of Palestinian Medical
      Relief Committees. Soldiers stopped the ambulance while it was enroute
      to the village of Sair for a free medical day. They knocked the driver
      to the ground and beat him, causing injuries to his face and head.

      Israeli settlers steal video camera from international volunteer
      The children began to physically assault the two women, kicking them
      and one of their video cameras. One adult female settler was also
      present but did nothing to prevent the children from harassing the
      workers. One of the settler children then stole the video camera from
      one of the HRWs and the settlers ran away towards the illegal Tel
      Rumeida settlement located in the center of Hebron city.


      Israeli army invades several West Bank areas and abducts 14 civilians

      Israeli forces invaded several cities and towns located in different
      parts of the West Bank and abducted 14 Palestinian civilians on Monday
      morning. In Bethlehem city in the southern part of the West Bank,
      Israeli troops and jeeps attacked and searched residents' houses
      located in Al Aza refugee camp. Soldiers forced families out of their
      homes during the search


      Hamas: We're ready to defend Gaza

      Hamas spokesman Ismail Radwan said in response to reports that Israel
      was planning a major operation in the Gaza Strip, "Hamas and the
      Palestinian people are fully prepared for the next battle with the
      Israeli enemy. Our response will be painful because our men are
      prepared for jihad and martyrdom. Hamas remains committed to jihad as
      a strategic option for liberating all of Palestine. This enemy
      understands only the language of force and we will teach them an
      unforgettable lesson."


      Olmert offer for Arab talks draws sceptical response

      But Saudi officials say the kingdom would only consider talks if
      Israel clearly accepted the Arab peace initiative without any
      conditions. A statement issued after Monday's Saudi cabinet session
      stated the kingdom's position. "Israel should realise that peace
      requires that it ends its constant violations and inhuman aggression
      towards the Palestinian people before anything else, and accept legal
      decisions passed by world bodies," it said.


      Gaza journalists strike in protest of BBC journalist kidnapping
      Palestinian journalists on Monday began a three-day strike to protest
      the kidnapping of British Broadcasting Corp. correspondent Alan
      Johnston, the longest-held reporter ever abducted in the Gaza Strip.


      Palestinian police crack down on growing West Bank lawlessness
      International Herald Tribune

      RAMALLAH, West Bank: Palestinian security forces have fixed traffic
      lights, chased car thieves, arrested petty criminals and destroyed
      hundreds of marijuana plants in a two-week campaign to halt rising
      lawlessness in the West Bank, they said Monday.

      Whereas Palestinians in the West Bank once lived in relatively safe
      communities, crime has been rising in recent years, including car
      theft and drug dealing. The upsurge came with widening poverty and
      unemployment and a weakening of the security forces, side effects of
      more than six years of Israeli-Palestinian fighting.

      The 80,000 members of the security forces have only received partial
      salaries in the past year because of a foreign aid boycott imposed on
      the Hamas government. Gunmen — whether militia members or criminals —
      are far more powerful than the police.

      Most Palestinians don't feel safe. A March opinion poll showed that 43
      percent of Palestinians wanted to make fighting crime its first
      priority — over just 13 percent who wanted the government to focus on
      restarting peace negotiations.

      Two weeks ago, security forces started cracking down on crime in the
      northern West Bank city of Nablus, a center for gangs trading in
      stolen cars and drugs.

      They began with fixing broken traffic lights, to give residents a
      sense of order. Security forces confiscated unregistered, uninsured
      cars, causing a rush of residents to get their car papers in order. In
      some cases, police pursued car and motorcycle thieves, often firing in
      the air during high-speed chases.

      Since then, the crackdown has spread to other areas. Now, there are
      checkpoints in most West Bank cities, and residents have to hand over
      papers to prove their cars are not stolen.

      Diab Al-Ali, a senior security official, said his men confiscated 551
      cars and 21 motorbikes and arrested 94 suspected criminals in two
      weeks. Security officials also found 62 kilograms (136 pounds) of
      marijuana and 3,443 plants.

      Palestinians said they were pleased.

      Ayman Tambour, owner of a minimarket in central Nablus said he'd been
      robbed twice by masked gunmen, and had his car stolen once in the past
      three months.

      Now, he is quietly relieved by the sight of uniformed policemen. "When
      I see them, I feel better. But as long as there's armed men in the
      streets, I won't feel safe," he said.

      AP reporter Ali Daraghmeh contributed to this report from Nablus.



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