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July 27, 2001
Extra-judicial assassinations

From LAW Society


Two extra-judicial assassinations in two days

From: "LAW Society" law@lawsociety.org
LAW Society press Release 25 July 2001:

Israeli forces today assassinated 38-year-old Salah Druza from Nablus by firing missiles down on his car from a helicopter gunship.

LAW's researcher stated that as Druza drove along Haifa Road in Nablus at noon today, helicopter gunships fired two missiles at his car but missed the target. The gunships then fired another four missiles, directly hitting the car and killing Druza instantly.

Yesterday, Monday 23 July, 26-year-old Mustafa Yaseen from Aneen in the district of Jenin was assassinated in front of his wife and child.

Mustafa's wife Iman Yaseen, 26, told LAW that she was watching television with her husband and 2-year-old daughter Farah at 4:30 pm when they heard noises outside. Yaseen opened the window and told Iman that there were about 40 Israeli soldiers and Special Forces dressed in civilian clothes standing surrounding the house. As he looked through the window, the soldiers ordered him out of the house. The minute he opened the door, they shot him in the chest. He turned around from the impact and they shot him again, in the back. Mustafa fell to the ground, bleeding profusely.

Iman, who had gone to the door with her husband, was standing next to him when he fell. She begged the soldiers to provide him with medical attention, but they threatened her with their guns and forced her to move away. In spite of her crying and begging, the soldiers left Yaseen bleeding for 40 minutes then took his body and left.

The body was held by the Israeli authorities and handed over to the Palestinian DCO on Tuesday 24 July. Pathologist Abdullah Yaseen stated to LAW that Mustafa was shot point blank. LAW discovered that Yaseen had been held for several hours at the Israeli roadblock in Um Al Fahem on the day before he was assassinated.

According to LAW Society's documentation, in addition to the those described above, the following Palestinians have so far fallen victim to Israel's policy of extra-judicial execution:

* Hussein 'Abayat was killed on 9 November 2000 in Beit Sahour near Bethlehem when Israeli Air Force helicopters fired anti-tank missiles at his car. Two women standing nearby, Aziza Mahmoud Danoun Jubran (58) and Rahma Rasheed Shaeen Hindi (54) were killed. At least 3 other people were badly injured, namely Nasmi and Jamila Sh'ibat and Khaled Salahat.

* Jamal Abed Al Razeq, a 30-year-old Fatah activist, was killed at the Morag Junction in the Gaza Strip on 22 November 2000. Three other Palestinians were killed during the incident, namely Awni Ismail (37), Sami Abu Laban (35) and Nael Alidawi (25), all from Rafah.

* Ibrahim Bani Audi was killed in Nablus on 23 November 2000 by a bomb planted in his car by the Israeli security services with the collaboration of a relative of Ibrahim.

* Anwar Mahmoud Humran was killed by Israeli army snipers on 11 December 2000 when leaving Al Quds Open University in the al Dahye quarter in Nablus.

* Yousif Abu Swaye was killed on 12 December 2000 by snipers of the Israeli army just outside his father's house in Al Khader village near Bethelem.

* Abas al Awiwi was killed by snipers of the Israeli army in Hebron on 13 December 2000 when he was standing in front of the shoe factory when he use to work.

* Sa'ad al Kharuf, 32, from Nablus, was shot and killed on December 14, 2000, when ambushed by Israeli Special Forces near Hiwara junction south of Nablus.

* Hani Abu Bakra, a 31-year-old Hamas activist, was killed at the Gush Katif junction in the Gaza Strip on 14 December 2000, when driving a minibus with passengers on board. He was stopped by Israeli soldiers who asked for his ID and then shot him in the head and the chest from short range. A 40-year-old passenger, Issa Kanan, was injured during the incident and died later from his wounds.

* Dr. Thabet Thabet was killed by gunfire in Tulkarem on 31 December 2000, when reversing his car outside his home.

* Masoud Ayad, 50, from Gaza. An officer in Force 17 killed when an Israeli gunship fired three missiles on his car on February 13, 2001.

* Mohammad Al Madani, 25, from Balata refugee camp, was shot by an Israeli sniper on February 19, 2001.

* Mohammad Abdul Al, 26, from Rafah. He was killed on April 2 when an Israeli gunship fired three missiles on his car.

* Iyad Hardan, 24, from Araba, Jenin. Killed in a public phone blast on April 5, 2001.

* Ahmad Asad, 37, from Artas in Bethlehem district. Shot dead before his house by Israeli Special Forces on May 5, 2001.

* Mutasim Al Sabagh, from Jenin refugee camp. Killed on May 12, was killed when an Israeli gunship fired missiles on a car he was traveling in.

* Osama Jawabreh, 29, from Nablus was killed on June 24, when a public phone he was using in the West Bank city of Nablus exploded.

* Mohammad Bsharat killed on July 1, 2001.

* Waleed Bsharat killed on July 1, 2001.

* Samih Abu Haneesh killed on July 1, 2001.

* Omar Sa'adeh, killed on July 17 when two Israeli gunships fired missiles at his house. Three other Palestinians were killed in the Israeli assault: Ishac Sa'adeh, 51, Mohammad Sa'adeh, 29, and Taha Al Arouj, 37.

LAW Society's Remarks

Israel's assassination policy constitutes willful killing, which is a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which stipulates in Article 32:

"The High Contracting Parties specifically agree that each of them is prohibited from taking any measure of such a character as to cause the physical suffering or extermination of protected persons in their hands. This prohibition applies not only to murder, torture, corporal punishment, mutilation and medical or scientific experiments not necessitated by the medical treatment of a protected person but also to any other measures of brutality whether applied by civilian or by military agents."

Moreover, it is a grave breach of Article 75, Protocols Additional to the IV Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 (Protocol 1) especially Paragraph 2, which states,

"The following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever, whether committed by civilian or by military agents:

a. Violence to the life, health, or physical or mental well-being of persons, in particular:

i. Murder; ii. Torture of all kinds, whether physical or mental; iii. Corporal punishment; and iv. Mutilation"

and Paragraph 3 of Article 85 of the same Protocol, which stipulates

"In addition to the grave breaches defined in Article 11, the following acts shall be regarded as grave breaches of this Protocol, when committed willfully, in violation of the relevant provisions of this Protocol, and causing death or serious injury to body or health:

a. Making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack."

LAW Society demands the following:

1. The Israeli government to immediately stop its crimes and collective punishment against Palestinians.

2. An international investigation committee to be set up, working according to UN Resolution 1322.

3. The Security Council to set up an international tribunal and bring the Israeli war criminals to justice, such as the case with the war criminals of ex-Yugoslavia.

4. Placing Palestinians under international protection.

5. The international community to help put an end to these crimes and to the Israeli occupation.

6. The EU to take effective steps, based on Article 2 of Euro-Israeli Partnership Agreement, which states that Israel must respect human rights.

LAW - The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment, PO Box 20873, Jerusalem, Tel. +972 (0)2-5833537, 5833530, 5833298, Fax. +972 (0)2-5833317, email: law@lawsociety.org, web: www.lawsociety.org

LAW - The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment is a non-governmen4tal organisation dedicated to preserving human rights through legal advocacy. LAW is affiliate to the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), The International Federation for Human Rights (FDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT).