August 4, 2006
171 killed, including 34 children, since the June 2006 IOF incursion of Gaza
The IOF have continued using excessive and disproportionate force against Palestinian civilians, resulting in the killing and injuring of dozens of civilians. Just today, the IOF killed 8 Palestinians in Rafah, increasing the number of Palestinians killed since the beginning of the Israeli aggression against Lebanon to 106. The total number of Palestinians killed since the beginning of the Israeli military operation in Gaza code-named “Summer Rains” has reached 171, including 33 children under the age of 18. According to Al Mezan’s field investigations, on 3 August between approximately 00:05 until 10:45am, the IOF fired 11 rockets at Amer neighborhood, and different areas of Al Shawka area in the southeast of Rafah town, killing the following 8 Palestinians:
– Ziad Soliman Aid, 20, shrapnel wounds to the head
– Adnan BAssam Abu Libda, 19, shrapnel wounds to the legs and abdomen
– Wa’il Mohammed Younis, 24, body blown into several pieces
– Mohammed Anwar Kollab, 21, shrapnel wounds to the head
– Anis Salem Abu Awwad, 12, shrapnel wounds to the neck
– Abd Ar Rahman Ahmed Abu Sneima, 42, shrapnel wounds to different parts of the body
– Yousif Obeid Allah Abu Mour, 22, shrapnel wounds to different parts of the body
– Soliaman Mahfouz Irmilat, 55, shrapnel wounds.
A further 21 Palestinians were reported injured, 8 sustaining critical injuries.
According to Al Mezan’s fieldworkers, at approximately 3:00 am on the same day, the IOF opened fired on ambulances and medical personnel who had rushed to Zalata area close to Shawka Municipal Council to transfer Abu Mour and Abu Sneima’s corpses to the morgue. Only seven hours later did the IOF allow ambulances to enter the area.
Furthermore, the IOF fired 3 rockets close to Abu Yousif Al Najjar Hospital, spreading panic among patients and workers, and injuring 4 residents, including 14-year old Iman Mohammed Abu Khatleh, who sustained shrapnel wounds to the head.
In a previous incident on 1 August at approximately 10:00 am, the IOF entered the borders of Rafah town by the eastern road leading to Rafah Terminal, and maintained control over the area of the southeastern entrance of Rafah. On the same day at approximately 1:00pm, the IOF entered the area northeast of Beit Lahia town and stationed themselves in the Palestine industrial area or “DCO”, and the evacuated Nisanit settlement. IOF have continued shelling Al Nada towers, Beit Hanoun farm, as well as northwestern Beit Hanoun town. They also maintain the closure of the road leading to Erez Checkpoint
Al Mezan strongly condemns the silence of the international community in the light of the ongoing IOF crimes against Palestinian civilians in the OPT, and emphasizes that the targeting of Palestinian civilians and their property as well as medical personnel are war crimes according to international humanitarian law. Based on the field facts and declarations of 8 July by Major General Yoav Jallant of the Southern Command of the IOF, Al Mezan affirms that these violations evidence the prior intent and deliberate nature of Israel’s killings and destruction.
Al Mezan reiterates its demands to the international community, most notably the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill its legal and moral obligations, and immediately intervene to halt Israeli war crimes and provide protection to Palestinian civilians in the OPT.