An escalation in violence in Gaza and southern Israel results in the injury of 12 Palestinian civilians.
Twenty-one Palestinians were injured during clashes with Israeli forces in and around Jerusalem’s Old City, in protests against the visit of Israeli right-wing activists to the Al Haram Al Sharif (Temple Mount).
Over 870 trees vandalized by Israeli settlers as the olive harvest gets underway.
Twenty-one Palestinians injured in clashes with Israeli forces and settlers in the Old City of Jerusalem
The majority of this week’s injuries (21 out of 25) occurred during clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in and around the Al Haram Al Sharif (Temple Mount) in the Old City of Jerusalem. On 5 October, 15 Palestinians sustained injuries during confrontations that took place inside the Al Haram Al Sharif (Temple Mount) following Friday prayers, in the context of protests against Israeli right-wing activists’ access to the compound in recent weeks. Injuries were caused by rubber-coated metal bullets, tear gas canisters, tear gas inhalation and physical assault. Twelve other Palestinians were arrested during the clashes.
The events at the Al Haram Al Sharif (Temple Mount) sparked separate clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces and settlers in other areas of the Old City. In one incident on 5 October, Israeli forces physically assaulted and injured a 16 year-old boy and his father and detained them. While the father was released on the same day, the boy remained in custody for four days. He was later released under bail and sent to home arrest for 14 days. Also in the Old City, Israeli forces intervened in a clash between Palestinians and Israelis, in which two Palestinians were injured. In a separate incident in the same area, an Israeli was stoned and injured by Palestinians.
Palestinian casualties by Israeli forces
Killed this week: 0
Killed in 2012: 4
Injured this week: 25 (19 in demonstrations)
Injured in 2012: 2,242
2012 weekly average of injured: 60
2011 weekly average of injured: 30
Search and arrest operations by Israeli forces this week: 69
Also this week, near Gilo settlement Israeli settlers shot and injured a Palestinian worker who was trying to access East Jerusalem without a permit; Settlers also stoned and injured a Palestinian driver near Beit Haggay settlement (Hebron) and one settler was injured by Palestinians near Kafr Qaddum village (Qalqiliya).
Over 870 trees vandalized by Israeli settlers at the start of the olive harvest season
The beginning of the annual olive harvest this week was marked by a significant surge in Israeli settler attacks against Palestinian-owned olive trees. Throughout the week Israeli settlers cut down or set fire to over 870 trees located in the vicinity of settlements across the West Bank. The affected trees belonged to farmers from the villages of Al Mughayyir (around 250), Ras Karkar 23) and Beitillu (20) in the Ramallah governorate, Qaryut (120) in the Nablus governorate, ‘Azzun (5), Far’ata (130) and Kafr Laqif (10) in the Qalqiliya governorate, Zeita (100) in the Tulkarm governorate, Al Khader (170) in the Bethlehem governorate and Mikhamas (50) in the Jerusalem governorate.
Since the beginning of 2012 OCHA recorded a total of 7,180 trees vandalized by settlers, down from 8,854 in the equivalent period of 2011. The inadequate enforcement of the rule of law against violent settlers remains of concern. Last year, the Israeli NGO Yesh Din reported that only one of the 127 complaints regarding settler attacks against Palestinian trees monitored by the organization since 2005 has led to the indictment of a suspect.
Also this week, farmers from the communities of Deir al ’Asal at Tahta in Hebron and Jinsafut and Kafr Qaddum in Qalqiliya and Burin in Nablus reported that Israeli settlers stole olives that had just been harvested, as well as some agricultural tools.
One settler and one Palestinian were injured during clashes which began while Palestinians were working on their land in Mikhmas village (Jerusalem).
Palestinian-owned structures demolished in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem
Demolished in 2012: 467
Of which residences: 136
People displaced in 2012: 676
2012 vs. 2011 demolitions (weekly av.): 13 vs. 12
2012 vs. 2011 people displaced (weekly av.): 21 vs. 21
Settler-related incidents resulting in injuries or property damage:
This week: 18
2012 weekly average: 6
2011 weekly average: 8
Palestinian injuries by settler violence:
This week: 3
Injured in 2012: 132
2011 weekly average: 4
Israeli settlers injured by Palestinians:
This week: 3
Injured in 2012: 36
Injured in 2011: 37
2012 weekly average: 1
No demolitions or demolition orders recorded
For the fifth consecutive week, there were no reports of demolitions of Palestinian-owned structures by the Israeli authorities in Area C and East Jerusalem. In addition, there was no record of issuance of demolition orders during the week.
Escalation of violence: 12 Palestinian civilians injured
Violence escalated in Gaza and southern Israel over two days during the reporting period. On 7 October, the Israeli Air Force targeted two Palestinian members of an armed group who were riding a motorcycle in Rafah City, killing one of them and injuring the other. Eight civilians, including four children (one of whom a four week old baby), were also injured during the incident.
Following the air strike, Palestinian armed factions fired dozens of projectiles towards southern Israel. No injuries or damage to property were reported. In response, on 8 October Israeli forces fired tank shells towards different areas in the vicinity of the fence in Johr ad Dik, Al Qarara, Khuza’a and east of Khan Younis. As a result, four Palestinian civilians, including two children, were injured, and a factory, a mosque and some houses sustained damage. Five schools in the area suspended classes for one day, affecting approximately 3,000 students. Although sporadic shooting and exchanges of fire continued during the rest of the week, no further injuries were reported.
Also this week, on several occasions the Israeli navy opened fire towards Palestinian fishing boats, forcing them ashore; four fishermen were arrested.
Frequent power cuts continue
During the reporting period, the Gaza Power Plant (GPP) continued operating only two out of its four turbines, reportedly due to the ongoing fuel shortage. The two turbines produce 60 megawatts, but the plant could produce 110 megawatts if it was able to operate at full capacity, for which end it needs over 3.5 million liters of fuel a week. Currently, however, less than half of this quantity is being supplied from Egypt through the tunnels and the supply of fuel from Qatar to Gaza has been reportedly blocked by the Egyptian authorities in early August. Consequently, the majority of the Gazan population continued to experience power cuts of up to 12 hours per day, disrupting daily life and hindering the delivery of basic services.
Palestinian casualties by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip:
Killed this week: 1
Killed in 2012: 57
Injured this week: 14
Injured in 2012: 272
2012 weekly average of injured: 8
2011 weekly average of injured: 9
Israeli casualties by Palestinian fire from Gaza Injured this week: 0
Movement of goods (Kerem Shalom Crossing)
30 September – 6 October
Number of truckloads (TL): 1,078
TL carrying food: 46%
Weekly average of TL since the beginning of 2012: 1,076
Weekly average of TL before the blockade: 2,807
Truckloads this week: 0
Weekly average since the beginning of 2012: 5
Weekly average before the blockade: 240