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Israel, the occupying Power, persists in its lethal and unlawful campaign of military aggression and State terror against the defenceless Palestinian civilian population in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. Innocent Palestinian civilians, including children, continue to be killed and vast physical destruction continues to be caused by the Israeli occupying forces, which continue to launch assaults and raids in densely populated areas. The inability of the international community to act in order to bring to a halt these serious violations and grave breaches of international law being committed by the occupying Power has undoubtedly had serious ramifications in terms of the continuation of this crisis, for it has allowed Israel to continue acting with impunity and flagrant disrespect for the law.
Indeed, the inaction by the Security Council, which on Thursday, 13 July, failed to adopt a reasonable and balanced draft resolution intended to bring to a halt Israel’s military aggression, calm the situation and ensure respect for international law by all parties, has only further bolstered Israel’s perception that it is immune from the law and that it will not be held accountable for its illegal actions. The result has been the continuation of Israel’s military onslaught as well as its expansion, leading to the imposition of even more destruction and human loss on the besieged and devastated Palestinian civilian population in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, particularly in the Gaza Strip.
Moreover, in this regard, it is imperative to recall the repeated appeals we have made in previous letters to you about the need for urgent international action to prevent not only the further deterioration of the situation on the ground in the Occupied Palestinian Territory but also the further destabilization of the situation in the region, which is now tragically unfolding as Israel is simultaneously carrying out a barrage of brutal military assaults against the sovereign nation of Lebanon and the Lebanese civilian population. Accordingly, we reiterate our calls for serious international efforts to be exerted, including by the Security Council, to bring to a halt the perilous deterioration of the situation and to give diplomacy a chance to resolve this ongoing crisis.
In this regard, the Israeli occupying forces have continued to carry out measures of collective punishment against the Palestinian people and to wreak havoc in the Gaza Strip. In the few days since our last letter to you, the occupying forces have killed at least 23 more Palestinian civilians and have continued destroying Palestinian property and infrastructure, including institutions of the Palestinian Authority. On 13 July, the Israeli occupying forces bombed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Gaza City, causing severe damage to the building and to houses and vehicles in the area; and on 15 July, the Ministry of the Economy was badly damaged in an Israeli air strike. Moreover, yesterday, 17 July, the occupying forces once again struck the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with missiles launched from warplanes, completely destroying the building, causing damage to at least four other Ministries in the same compound, and causing extensive damage as well to dozens of homes in the area and injuring several civilians.
The targeting of Palestinian Authority institutions, into which so much work and effort, including funding and aid from the international community, have been put for development, is clearly intended to destroy the foundations of the Authority and to cripple the Palestinian leadership. Such actions should be firmly condemned and all efforts should be exerted to preserve these institutions which are to serve as the national foundations of a future independent Palestinian State. Further, and even more urgently, immediate efforts should be undertaken to provide protection and relief to the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation, which is suffering from an ever-growing humanitarian crisis as its economic, social and security conditions continue to severely deteriorate on a daily basis. The Palestinian people and their leadership thus once again call upon the international community to uphold its legal obligations and to undertake all necessary measures to compel Israel, the occupying Power, to immediately halt its military aggression and collective punishment of the Palestinian people and to scrupulously abide by international law, including the Fourth Geneva Convention. Today, the potential for saving human lives and for salvaging any prospects for peace rests on the shoulders of the international community, including the Security Council, and it remains our strongest hope that it will bear this responsibility at this crucial time.
The present letter is in follow-up to our previous 254 letters to you regarding the ongoing crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, since 28 September 2000. These letters, dated from 29 September 2000 (A/55/432-S/2000/921) to 12 July 2006 (A/ES-10/347-S/2006/519), constitute a basic record of the crimes having been committed by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people since September 2000. Moreover, we reiterate once again that for all of these war crimes, State terrorism and systematic human rights violations committed against the Palestinian people, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators must be brought to justice.
In follow-up to the above-mentioned letters, I regret to inform you that since our last letter to you at least 23 more Palestinian civilians, including children, have been killed by the Israeli occupying forces, raising the total number of martyrs killed since September 2000 to 4,048. (The names of the martyrs that have been identified are lis0ted in the annex to this letter.)
I should be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of this letter and its annex distributed as a document of the tenth emergency special session of the General Assembly, under agenda item 5, and of the Security Council.
(Wednesday, 12 July 2006, to Monday, 17 July 2006) Wednesday, 12 July 2006
1. Nazmi Azeez
2. Ahmad Hajjaj (15 years old)
3. Hassan Abu Obaid (15 years old)
4. Ibrahim Ali Al-Nibaheen (16 years old)
5. Salah Eldin Abu Maktoumah (14 years old)
6. Mahmoud Al-Assar
7. Ziad Abu Moghaiseb
8. Hamza Al-Jourani
Thursday, 13 July 2006
1. Eman Abu Khosah (12 years old)
2. Ahmed Salem Kawarei’
3. Mahmoud Al-Attar (18 years old)
Friday, 14 July 2006
Saturday, 15 July 2006
1. Ibrahim Abu Mugheiseb (18 years old)
2. Omar Younis
Sunday, 16 July 2006
1. Fatima Al-Shbeiri (70 years old)
2. Mua’z Hamza Edwan
3. Abdul Kareem Hamad
4. Shihada Zuhair Al-Kafarna (18 years old)
5. Abdel Lateef Obaid
6. Maher Attallah
7. Mahmoud Hossam Al-Saadi (18 years old)
Monday, 17 July 2006
1. Mohanned Saad Mosleh (17 years old)
2. Mahmoud Mohammad Al-Kafarna
* The total number of Palestinian martyrs killed by the Israeli occupying forces since 28 September 2000 is 4,048.