Nine Palestinians have been killed in the past week by Israeli forces, including seven from the Gaza Stip and two from the West Bank – six of whom were killed within 24 hours.
Between 10pm on Monday 17 September and 8pm on Tuesday 18 September, six Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces in what Amnesty International has condemned as a chilling demonstration of the utter disregard for right to life.
Saleh Higazi, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International said in an official statement they are shocked that five Palestinians have been killed by the Israeli authorities.
One died in their custody in just 24 hours.
Several of these incidents appear to involve deliberate and wilful killing of unarmed civilians and may amount to war crimes, Higazi said.
Higazi added that these incidents are not new in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and are likely to continue unless this cycle of impunity is broken.
It is the fact that such crimes are rarely, if ever, punished that allows unlawful killings and other violations of the right to life to continue in shameless disregard of international law, Higazi said.
The Palestinians killed in the West Bank have been identified as 24-year-old Muhammad Zaghloul al-Khatib al-Rimawi and 26-year-old Muhammad Yousif Alayan.
Al-Khatib, from the village of Beit Rima NW of Ramallah, was attacked and beaten to death in front of his family by Israeli occupation soldiers who stormed their house.
His family told Amnesty International that around 40 Israeli soldiers arrived in a civilian minibus and that 15 of them burst into the family home in a pre-dawn raid assaulting Mohammad while he was still lying in bed.
Alayan was from the Qalandiya refugee camp who was shot by Israeli forces whilst trying to defend himself against an Israeli settler in East Jerusalem.
Alayan was unarmed and no Israelis were reported injured during the incident.
Muhammad Ahmad Abu Naji, 34, and Ahmad Muhammad Muhsin Omar, 20, were shot and killed by Israeli soldiers in the northern Gaza Strip while participating in a demonstration against Israel’s eleven-year blockade of the besieged enclave.
Naji Jamil Abu Assi, 18, and Alaa Ziyad Abu Assi, 21, were also killed on the Southern Gaza fence during an airstrike on the same day.
According to Amnesty International the Israeli military has claimed that the two men were targeted because they approached the Gaza-Israel separation fence and placed a suspicious object nearby.
A further three people have been shot and killed in demonstrations in Gaza since; 15-year-old Mo’men Abu Ayadeh, killed on 20 September, 25-year-old Karim Mohammed Kallab killed on 21 September and 21-year-old Emad Shteiwi who was shot on 23 September.
PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi has strongly condemned Israel’s actions, and has called upon the international community solidarity.
The international community is urged to end Israel’s devaluation of Palestinian lives and to abandon its double standard when it comes to the loss of life, regardless of nationality or religion, Ashrawi said.
We appeal to the International Criminal Court to take immediate action and open an official and criminal investigation into such widespread and flagrant war crimes and crimes against humanity being committed throughout occupied Palestine.
Source: Palestine Monitor