From 17 July to 13 August 2018, Israeli security forces raided 20 homes in Beit Ummar on five occasions, most of the times as punishment for fires that broke out in settlement fields nearby. The forces used violence and threats and confiscated money and a car. This is another example of how the military wantonly abuses its power to terrorize families and disrupt their lives, sparing no one, and evidence of the military’s profound disregard for the privacy and dignity of Palestinians and their right to live their lives without interference.
1 Sep. 2018 - 14 Sep. 2018
On Tuesday, 24 July 2018, about ten masked soldiers accompanied by an assault dog raided two homes in Bethlehem. The soldiers forced open the doors and set dogs on two members of the families. In the first home the forces did not ask anyone anything, leaving through the rear door. In the second they detained one young man. This kind of brutal behavior is typical of the routine imposed by the occupation regime in the West Bank and forms part of military policy.
4 Aug. 2018 - 31 Aug. 2018
For the last 5 years, the military has raided al-Jalazun R.C. once a week, on average. Two recent raids included arrests, live fire and incursions into nine homes, with damage to property. Night raids have become a staple of the occupation regime in the West Bank, where the military has adopted sweeping arbitrary powers. Abusing civilians as a form of intimidation and pressure is unjustified and constitutes collective punishment, which is prohibited under international law. This is yet another example of daily life under occupation.
On the night of 5 July 2018, soldiers raided 7 homes in the village, waking families, overturning their homes and questioning some about ties to a former prisoner expelled to Gaza in the Shalit deal. Soldiers mistreated an ill man and severely beat another. Nocturnal raids on Palestinian homes, by now a West Bank routine, are clearly designed to intimidate and have no justification. Abusing civilians to pressure them is collective punishment that is prohibited by international law. This is yet another example of daily life under the occupation.
Every day, Israel determines what the lives of Palestinians in the West Bank will look like – while they, themselves, are barred from taking part in decisions that shape their present and their future. Israel uses its power in a violent, arbitrary fashion, with blatant disregard for the safety, wellbeing and quality of life of the Palestinians who live under its control.
On 2 June 2018, after settlers assaulted a shepherd aged 71 just outside the village of ‘Urif, clashes erupted with local residents. Soldiers who arrived on the scene joined the settlers, throwing stun and teargas grenades, firing “rubber” bullets, and beating several Palestinians with their rifle butts. This incident is not exceptional: such attacks take place routinely, with the full support of senior officers and government ministers, and no effort is made to stop or prevent them.
Early on the morning of 7 May 2018, soldiers came with attack dogs to Jenin R.C. and entered two homes. The soldiers used the dogs to assault four of the occupants, including a teenaged boy and a man over 70. Military night raids on homes have long since become part of the violent routine of occupation. In this case, the soldiers even used attack dogs, and then exhibited marked indifference to those injured. This conduct is not a local initiative. It is part of the Israeli military’s policy in the West Bank. Therefore, as in other cases, no one will be called to account.
On 17 June, a new military order removing any option for Palestinians to challenge demolition orders against their homes will go into effect. This is a new phase in Israel’s planning and building policy in the West Bank, which is aimed at denying Palestinian development and taking over land for Israeli needs. Removing the façade of judicial review over demolitions indicates Israel’s plan to accelerate dispossession and a conviction that it will not be called to task over this either internationally or locally.
Israel’s regime of occupation is inextricably bound up in human rights violations. B’Tselem strives to end the occupation, as that is the only way forward to a future in which human rights, democracy, liberty and equality are ensured to all people, both Palestinian and Israeli, living between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.