Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

Resource: Faced with settler violence, the IDF stands idly by

A new report by human rights organization Yesh Din about how IDF soldiers act when offenses are committed by Israeli citizens against Palestinians in the West Bank.

The phenomenon of “standing idly by” refers to incidents when soldiers witness violence by Israeli citizens against Palestinians and their property and do nothing to prevent the harm while the action is ongoing; refrain from detaining or arresting the perpetrators after the event; fail to secure the scene to allow the collection of evidence; or fail to testify about the event to the police.

According to the provisions of international law as well as repeated rulings by the Israeli Supreme Court, the IDF is obligated to maintain law and order in the West Bank. Therefore, upon the occupation of the West Bank its forces were given policing powers. However, the report shows how over the years the army has avoided fulfilling that duty and tried to impose it on the Israel Police.

Yesh Din is a volunteer organization working to defend the human rights of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation.

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Presumed guilty from the get-go

Military courts have operated in the occupied territories since the Israeli occupation began in 1967. To date, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians have been brought before these courts. The following B’Tselem report focuses on one of the central aspects in the work of the military justice system: remand in custody pending end of proceedings.

With the exception of individuals tried for traffic violations, remanding Palestinian defendants in custody for the duration of the proceedings is the rule rather than the exception. One of the outcomes of this policy is that the vast majority of military court cases end in plea bargains. Defendants prefer to avoid a lengthy trial while in custody, knowing that they risk spending more time behind bars than the prison sentence they would receive in a plea bargain.

In effect, the case is decided at the time the remand is approved rather than on the basis of evidence against the defendant.

B’Tselem – The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories was established in 1989 by a group of prominent academics, attorneys, journalists, and Knesset members. It endeavors to document and educate the Israeli public and policymakers about human rights violations in the Occupied Territories, combat the phenomenon of denial prevalent among the Israeli public, and help create a human rights culture in Israel.

 Newsletter banner

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: 'Mock' law enforcement in the West Bank

Only 7.4 percent of West Bank Israeli police investigations following complaints from Palestinian victims of offenses committed against them or their property by Israeli civilians result in indictments. The remaining investigations are closed, in most cases (some 85 percent), due to investigative failure, largely because investigators were unable to find suspects or collect enough evidence for an indictment.

A new report by Israeli human rights organization Yesh Din discusses the reasons for the failure to enforce the law on Israeli civilians in the West Bank. An analysis closed case files reveals substandard investigations characterized by failures and deficiencies at every stage.

Read also:
Perpetrator unknown: The systemic failure to investigate settler violence

Yesh Din is a volunteer organization working to defend the human rights of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation.


View article: AAA
Share article

Infographic: East Jerusalem by the numbers, 2015

Ahead of Jerusalem Day 2015, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) released a factsheet detailing the disparities between the city’s Jewish and Palestinian residents and the systemic discrimination in East Jerusalem. The following infographic accompanies the report. Read more here.

ACRI infographic on Jerusalem, 2015

View article: AAA
Share article

Testimonies: 'This is How We Fought in Gaza'

Breaking the Silence, an organization of Israeli combat veterans who want to expose the Israeli public to the realities of the occupation, publishes a report compiling over 60 testimonies of soldiers and officers who served in 2014′s Gaza war, Operation Protective Edge.

The testimonies in this collection close the yawning gaps between what the IDF and government spokespersons told the public about the combat that took place in Gaza, and the reality described by the soldiers who took part in the operation.

The testimonies reveal the guiding military principle of “minimum risk to our forces, even at the cost of harming innocent civilians,” which alongside efforts to deter and intimidate the Palestinians, led to massive and unprecedented harm to the population and the civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip.

Read more: Redefining civilians and legitimate targets: Israeli soldiers testify on Gaza

Breaking the Silence is an organization of veteran combatants who have served in the Israeli military since the start of the Second Intifada and have taken it upon themselves to expose the Israeli public to the reality of everyday life in the Occupied Territories. We endeavor to stimulate public debate about the price paid for a reality in which young soldiers face a civilian population on a daily basis, and are engaged in the control of that population’s everyday life.

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Fact-finding mission investigates 'Protective Edge'

A new report by Physicians for Human Rights, authored by a team of international medical experts, documents shocking testimonies of victims and presents new evidence from Operation Protective Edge in Gaza.

In the course of the armed conflict during Operation Protective Edge in Gaza during the summer of 2014, allegations were made regarding the use of disproportionate force by the Israeli army, indiscriminate attacks on civilian targets, and a lack or failure of precautionary measures. Up until now, external independent experts were not allowed to enter Gaza for purposes of fact-finding and documentation of evidence, either during the fighting or after the ceasefire.

In July 2014, while the attacks were ongoing, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel made a decision to commission a fact-finding mission to Gaza. The aim was to collect and document, wherever possible, information regarding patterns of injury and attack from witnesses and victims. To this end, PHR-Israel recruited 8 independent international medical experts, who were not affiliated with either Israeli or Palestinian parties involved in the conflict. They visited Gaza three times — once during the fighting and twice after.

Read more about the report here.

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Two legal systems — discrimination under military occupation

One of the most prominent and disturbing characteristics of Israeli military rule in the West Bank is the creation and development of an official and institutionalized legal regime of two separate legal systems, on an ethnic-national basis.

The long-standing residence of citizens of the State of Israel, the occupying power, in settlements at the heart of the occupied territory – which contravenes international law in and of itself – has led to systematic discrimination that is anchored in legislation and rulings that affect every aspect in the lives of Palestinian residents of the West Bank.

This dual system of law is the focal point of a new report by the Association of Civil Rights in Israel, “One Rule, Two Legal Systems: Israel’s Regime of Laws in the West Bank.”

Established in 1972, ACRI is Israel’s oldest and largest human rights organization and the only one dealing with the entire spectrum of rights and civil liberties issues in Israel and the Occupied Territories. Read more about ACRI here

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Coercing African asylum seekers to go home

Israeli authorities have unlawfully coerced almost 7,000 Eritrean and Sudanese nationals into returning to their home countries where they risk serious abuse, Human Rights Watch said in a report released in September 2014. Some returning Sudanese have faced torture, arbitrary detention, and treason charges in Sudan for setting foot in Israel, while returning Eritreans also face a serious risk of abuse.

The 83-page report, “‘Make Their Lives Miserable’: Israel’s Coercion of Eritrean and Sudanese Asylum Seekers to Leave Israel,” documents how Israel’s convoluted legal rules thwart Eritrean and Sudanese asylum seekers’ attempts to secure protection under Israeli and international law. Israeli authorities have labeled Eritreans and Sudanese a “threat,” branded them “infiltrators,” denied them access to fair and efficient asylum procedures, and used the resulting insecure legal status as a pretext to unlawfully detain or threaten to detain them indefinitely, coercing thousands into leaving.

Read +972′s full coverage of the refugee issue

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Privatizating law enforcement in, around settlements

‘The Lawless Zone’ is a report by Yesh Din on the transfer of policing and security powers to the Civilian Security Coordinators (CSC) in Israel’s West Bank settlements and outposts. The report presents an analysis of the institution of the CSCs as an inherent aspect of the biased and chaotic state of Israeli law enforcement in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The report demonstrates how the regime of civilian security coordinators undermines the rule of law in the West Bank to the point of stripping it of all meaning. It constitutes another layer in Israel’s dereliction of its duty to protect the Palestinian residents of the West Bank, Yesh Din writes.

Read more about the report here. Watch a video explaining the civilian security system here.

Related:
Settler violence: It comes with the territory
Sheriffs of the land: Meet the settlers with military authority

Yesh Din is a volunteer organization working to defend the human rights of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation.



View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: How the Shin Bet holds Gazans' health ransom

A 2008 report by Israeli NGO Physicians for Human Rights – Israel, detailing for the first time the methods Israel’s domestic security services use to exploit the medical needs of Gaza Strip residents in order to extort them into becoming collaborators for Israel.

In September 2014, dozens of Israeli army intelligence reservists publicly spoke out about the way that they were trained and ordered to conduct surveillance on innocent Palestinians to find ways of extorting them into becoming informants. Such information included innocent Palestinians’ sexual orientation, which the Shin Bet could threaten to expose, or health problems — their own or of a family member.

The practice of leveraging Gazans’ access to health care in order to get intelligence information out of them has been documented in the past. Six years earlier, in 2008, Physicians for Human Rights – Israel (PHR-I) put out a detailed report on the practice, including testimonies from Palestinians whom the Shin Bet demanded information from in exchange for permission to enter Israel to receive needed medical care.

Following the Unit 8200 reservists’ letter, PHR-I responded that soldiers’ testimonies corroborate the testimonies it collected from Gazan patients six years earlier, calling it “direct extortion.” The organization added, “we are encouraged by the fact that these acts also bother those serving in the security forces and we hope that this will bring about a discussion of the matter and an end to this practice.”

+972 is republishing the report here in order to explain in greater detail exactly what the reserve intelligence officers are describing:

More on the 8200 revelations:
Against spy revelations, Israel doth protest too much
IDF’s ‘start-up nation’ reservists refuse to serve the occupation
Refusal by elite IDF reservists angrily dismissed as ‘political’

Physicians for Human Rights-Israel is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that strives to promote a more fair and inclusive society in which the right to health is applied equally for all. It is PHR-Israel’s view that Israel’s prolonged occupation over Palestinian territory is the basis of human rights violations. For this reason it opposes the occupation and endeavor to put an end to it.




View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Inventing retroactive 'solutions' for land theft

In February 2012, the Netanyahu government established a committee to provide retroactive approval for illegally-constructed outposts in the West Bank.

The Levy Committee, headed by Supreme Court Justice Edmund Levy, attempted to find a juridical solution to the growing number of petitions submitted to the Supreme Court on behalf of Palestinian landowners demanding the state enforce its laws and demolish illegal construction on private land. According the Levy Report, the territories seized by Israel in 1967 are not considered “occupied,” and that legitimate legal tools exist for approving outposts constructed without permits, even if they were built on private Palestinian land.

A new report by Yesh Din reveals the ways in which the report was commissioned by the Israeli government in order to invent a retroactive “solution” for the problem of the illegal outposts. Adopting its recommendations, Yesh Din says, will serve to usurp privately owned Palestinian land, reward criminals who seized this land contrary to the law, and effectively eliminate Palestinians’ right to property.

Related:
Panel appointed by Netanyahu concludes: There is no occupation
Report that claims ‘there is no occupation’ presents an opportunity



View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Undermining the status quo at the Temple Mount

The Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif is one of the most complicated and sensitive issues on Israel’s agenda, activating friction points between Israel and the Palestinian population, and the Arab world at large. Over the past several hundred years, a status quo has been maintained according to which the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif area is an area reserved for Muslim prayer and the Western Wall is a prayer area reserved for Jews.

Over the last decade, the status of these areas has gradually shifted, driven by a revival of activity by Jews determined to strengthen the status of the Temple Mount complex as a Jewish religious center and to marginalize the claims of Muslims to the Mount. The following report by Israeli NGOs Ir Amim and Keshev aims to present information about the growing activity of organizations working to change the status quo on the Temple Mount and, in some cases, to actually erect the Third Jewish Temple upon it.

Ir Amim is an Israeli NGO that focuses on Jerusalem within the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Ir Amim seeks to render Jerusalem a more equitable and sustainable city for the Israelis and Palestinians who share it. Keshev is a research and information center that focuses on exposing biased coverage patterns in the Israeli media, teaching critical media consumption and encouraging fair media. 

View article: AAA
Share article

Resource: Israel's persistent policy of land discrimination

To commemorate the 38th “Land Day”, marked on 30 March 2014, Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, decided to research the policy of ‘state land’ allocation. This data revealed that the ILA and the Ministry of Construction and Housing persist in their discriminatory policies against Arab-Palestinian citizens in Israel in various fields of development.

The ILA and the Ministry also continue to place Palestinian land on the market for mass housing construction in the illegal settlements in the 1967 occupied territories, and sell property belonging to Palestinian refugees, thereby further obstructing the likelihood for their right of return.

Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel is an independent human rights organization and legal center. Established in November 1996, it works to promote and defend the rights of Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel, 1.2 million people, or 20 percent of the population, as well as Palestinians living in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). (www.adalah.org/eng/)

View article: AAA
Share article
© 2010 - 2015 +972 Magazine
Follow Us
Credits

+972 is an independent, blog-based web magazine. It was launched in August 2010, resulting from a merger of a number of popular English-language blogs dealing with life and politics in Israel and Palestine.

Website powered by RSVP

Illustrations: Eran Mendel