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Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
13 July 2004
OFFICE FOR THE COORDINATION OF HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS
P.O. Box 38712 East Jerusalem
Phone: (972) 2 – 5829962 / 5825853, Fax: (972) 2 – 5825841
OCHA Weekly Briefing Notes
Update for oPt (07 - 13 July 2004)
: Casualties -- Incidents involving ambulances -- Curfew -- House demolition/Demolition orders/People displaced -- Land levelling/confiscation --
Closures/restrictions on movement -- Water -- Labour movement to Israel -- Other -- Appendix
Sources: OCHA FCU, PRCS, UNRWA, IDF website, Israeli MoFA.
Incidents involving ambulances and medical teams
Denial of access: 1 incident
Delay (1 – 5 hours): 5 incidents
Shooting/Damage to Ambulance: 2 incidents
- (A PRCS ambulance came under Israeli Army gunfire while transporting a patient in critical condition from Beit Hanun to a local Palestinian hospital. The PRCS medics were obliged to return back to safety to the Beit Hanun clinic. On the way back to Beit Hanun the patient’s condition further deteriorated and was pronounced dead later. )
- A Military Medical Services ambulance was hit by Israeli Army gunfire, while attempting to evacuate injured in Sheikh Ajleen area. One of the medical crew sustained a bullet injury in the chest.
Sources: OCHA FCU, PRCS
Curfew was reported in the following location:
House demolitions/Demolition Orders/People Displaced
• Four people from Azzun Atma again received demolition orders for a green house, a water reservoir and two private dwellings all located near the settlement of Oranit. These demolition orders were first issued some 4-8 years ago, but were halted because of a court order.
: The IDF handed 6 demolition orders and 2 orders to stop building houses for Palestinians from Umm lasafa, Hebron District.
Sources: OCHA FCU, UNRWA
• The Israeli Civil Administration has informed the Palestinian DCL that work will soon start on a 2km expansion of Nahli’el settlement on Beitillu village land in the central Ramallah area (Nahli’el settlement was originally built on Beitillu land).
: Land in Sawahriya ash Saharqiya was bulldozed for the expansion of Wadi Nar checkpoint.
: A new outpost was established to the west of Negohot Settlement on a land belongs to Palestinians from Fuqeiqis, Hebron district. The settlers seized 100 dunums and put a caravan in the area.
: The IDF cut down 100 almond trees in an area between Al Aroub camp and Beit Ummar town adjacent to the bypass road 60, Hebron district. The trees belong to a Palestinian from Beit Ummar town.
• The land levelling operation is still ongoing in eastern parts of the northern Gaza strip town of Beit Hanun. Up to date the there is any exact figures as the area is still unapproachable because of the heavy IDF presence.
Sources: OCHA FCU
4 dunums = 1 acre
/Restrictions on movement
• The general situation remained relative relaxed in all three districts during the course of the week with no additional restrictions imposed on the local population. A number of military operations and search campaigns were conducted during the week in Jayyous, Kfar Labad, Azzun, Shufa, Ar Zawiya, Tulkarem refugee camp, Haja, Kfar Dik and Qalqilya, Salfit and Tulkarem towns. In Qalqilya district, flying checkpoints were established occasionally on the main roads between cities and also in between Palestinian villages.
• Palestinian and Israeli DCL principally agreed on extending the opening hours of the Azzun Atma gate from 04:00 to 23:00 after the continuous difficulties reported. However, the expanded opening hours have not yet been put into effect. This week saw demonstrations in front of the gate by residents of Azzun Atma, Beit Amin and Saniriya and other supporters protesting against the increased difficulties in gaining access through the gate over the last three weeks. No incidents have been reported in this respect.
: the IDF denied farmers from Ar Ras access to their land behind the Barrier at Kafriat checkpoint for no apparent reasons. Difficulties for other farmers to access their land through the gates have also been reported over the week at Kafr Sur and Zufin.
• The work on preparation for the Barrier construction in Ar Zawiya remains suspended following a decision from the High Court of Justice. Also the preparation work around Ariel is suspended pending new court decision.
For a reference West Bank checkpoint map please check the following link:
: IDF enhanced the trenches along parts of road 585 (4Km) near Ya'bad town in Jenin Governorate.
• Al Badhan checkpoint was opened for Palestinian pedestrians and humanitarian organizations vehicles between 0700 to 0100 and 1500 to 1800, no other traffic was permitted.
• Construction of the Barrier continues on the western edge of Budrus, Beit Sira and around Beituniya.
: Travel restrictions on the residents of Silwad were lifted after a two months ban. They are now allowed to travel outside the country (via Allenby Bridge/Jordan).
: Palestinians not residing in Jerusalem were denied access to Friday prayers at al Aqsa.
• Jericho remained closed during the week for all Palestinian west bankers. Only Jericho residents and Jerusalemites are allowed entrance/exit.
Jerusalem Envelope Barrier:
: Construction of the Barrier from is ongoing in An Nu’man, Ash Sheikh Sa’ad, Sur Baher, Sawahriya ash Sharqiya, Abu Dis and Al ‘Eizariya.
: Construction of the Barrier is still on halt in Biddu, Bet Duqqu, Bet Ijza and Al Qubeiba. Construction is continuing in Qatanna and Kharayib Umm Al Lahim.
: The road from Qalandiya checkpoint to 150m north of Al Ram checkpoint is now only open for traffic from south to north on the eastern lane only. The Israeli Supreme Court decided on 28 June to extend the injunction order against Barrier construction in the area. Preparation work can on the other hand continue. No work has started on the planned “Bir Nabala Enclave”.
: Land levelling for the construction of the Barrier has started north of Anata as well as west of Hizma.
: An amendment to military order T/14/03, affecting the route of the Barrier was issued on 23 June. The order converts the Barrier from a fence to 9 meter concrete Wall in the section going from 'Ayda refugee camp to the Gilo checkpoint, Bethlehem district.
: The Israeli High Court issued a decision to halt building the Barrier at the east entrance of An Nu'man village, Bethlehem district, and preventing the IDF and Border Police from arresting any of the village residents.
7 -13 July
: The checkpoint set up on 30 June on the bypass road 317 near Ar Rifa'iyya village, Hebron District is reported to become permanent.
11 - 12 July
: The Border Police set up a flying checkpoint at Al Khadr Husan junction with the bypass road 60, Bethlehem district, restricting the movement of people in and out of Bethlehem.
: The IDF removed six closures within the H2 area of the city of Hebron resulting in the improvement of movement of Palestinians around the old city. Concrete blocks and earth mounds were removed in the areas of Bab Az Zawye, Al Hadel street, Ber Sheva road, Jabal Juha, Khaled Eben Al Walid Mosque, Yaqin Prophet street.
: The entrance to Bani Na’im from route 60 (Jalajel) was re-opened
: The IDF erected a new gate in front of Bab AL Baladiyya checkpoint, H2, Hebron city.
• The number of valid permits for Hebron national bus company is 34, of which 26 for public transport between Hebron and Bethlehem and 8 for movement between Hebron and Jericho. Buses were prevented to enter Bethlehem through Beit Jala DCO checkpoint.
The enclosed areas in Gaza:
: IDF installed a new permanent concrete observation tower south of Beit Hanoun 400 metres away from the borderline in the Palestinian area.
• IDF have also established an observation post in a water pumping station approximately 400 metres from the eastern border in the Al Farrata area of Beit Hanoun As-Seafa: Movement remains restricted by the IDF; the entry-exit gate opens twice daily for
ID holders from 06:30 to 08:30 and 14:00 to 16:30. Vehicles have not been permitted to enter since November 2000, with the exception of international agencies that have undertaken prior coordination with the IDF. Since 17 April 2004, the As-Seafa gate has been largely closed, with very restricted movement. Since 22 April 2004 the IDF has allowed only 3-4 people to go in and out, for one time only, with prior coordination, in order to bring food in.
• Since 03 June, nobody aged below 30 is permitted to enter or leave.
: IDF restrictions remain, with the entry-exit gate at Tuffah checkpoint opening twice daily for Al Mawassi ID holders from 08.00 to 13.00 and 14.30 to 17.00. Since 10 May 2004, males aged below 30 years, are required to have prior coordination to move though Tuffah checkpoint. Since 06 June 2004, prior coordination is required for unmarried females aged 18-25. Vehicles are not allowed to pass, with the exception of international agencies that have undertaken prior coordination with the IDF.
• Tel As-Sultan checkpoint closed all week.
• 1-4 July 2004, no one was able to enter Al Mawassi but some residents were allowed to leave Al Mawassi.
• Tuffah checkpoint has been completely closed since 11 July.
: The Palestinian area adjacent to Kfar Darom settlement was declared a Closed Military Zone following a suicide attack on 27 February 2004. Since 20 July 2002 no vehicular movement has been allowed as the IDF erected a fence around the area. Movement restricted by the IDF with the entry-exit gate opening four times daily for Al Maa’ni ID holders only from 06:30 to 07:30, 10:30 to 11:30, 13:00 to 14:00 and 16:00 to 17:00.
: On 29 June 2004, the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanun was declared a closed military area following a Qassam rocket attack on Sederot on June 28th, which killed two Israelis. All roads leading in and out of Beit Hanun are blocked by sand barriers and/or trenches. Salah Ed Din street is blocked by two large sand barriers at Beit Lahia – Jaballia junction and at the by pass road south of Erez. As a result, vehicles are not allowed to enter with the exception of international agencies that have undertaken prior coordination with the IDF.
• As of 13 June, Local vehicles can cross with prior coordination with the IDF via Beit Hanun municipality.
Source OCHA FCUs, UNSCO and UNRWA
• Beit Liqya, Kharbatha al Misbah and other villages in the south-west Ramallah area are facing severe water shortages. Mekorot, the Israeli Water Undertaking, has reduced the supply and because of the low pressure water is not reaching many households on higher elevations. Because of shortages in the village Kharbatha al Misbah village council has cut off the water supply to a nearby Bedouin community of about 150 people.
Labour movement to Israel
• No new work or trader permits have been issued for the districts of Tulkarm and Salfit. For Qalqilya, a total of 178 trader permits only were renewed.
• A total of 1067 permits have been issued for workers and 383 permits for traders aged 35 and above. However, only several hundred workers and traders were actually allowed to enter.
: Palestinian youth stoned an IDF patrol in Qalandiya camp and soldiers responded with tear gas, rubber coated metal bullets and live rounds. The firing damaged three windows of the UNRWA basic boys’ school.
: The IDF again closed the road to the municipal garbage site in ‘Abud, Ramallah district, because of work in progress on the water network between Ofarim and Beit Arye settlements.