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Euro-Med records Israel’s violations of Palestinian human rights in Jerusalem

Feb. 28, 2019 1:56 P.M. (Updated: March 4, 2019 2:31 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- A new report documenting Israeli violations of the rights of the Palestinian people in Jerusalem during January 2019 was released earlier this week by the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor (Euro-Med).

The Euro-Med report, entitled “Violated Rights: Israel’s Repeated Violations of Palestinians’ Rights in Jerusalem” revealed Israeli authorities have consistently and deliberately and systematically pursued arbitrary and restrictive policies that violate the rights of Palestinians in occupied Jerusalem.

The report records Israel's continued policy of night home raids for searches and arrests mostly without warrants in occupied East Jerusalem.

Sarah Pritchett, Euro-Med’s spokesperson said, “The Israeli authorities continue their policy of restricting freedoms of the Palestinians in Jerusalem and preventing them from holding activities or events that reflect the Palestinian identity.”

She added, “These events do not violate the law and do not constitute any threat to the security of Israel.”

The report documented that Israeli forces continue their incursions into Palestinian hospitals, intimidating patients and abusing staff, especially Makassed Hospital, which was stormed by Israeli soldiers many times, with patients taken out of the hospital by force without any regard for their medical condition.

The use of excessive force by Israeli forces against Palestinians, including torture in detention centers and humiliating searches in public areas, were recorded as well.

The report also examines the religious violations against the people of the Holy City, the practical steps aimed at obliterating the city's identity and imposing control over the Al-Aqsa Mosque without regard to the UN resolutions on the special status of Jerusalem, as well as the Islamic and Christian holy sites there.

Furthermore, the report recorded the arbitrary detentions of Palestinians in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and the area of Bab al-Rahma (Gate of Mercy), one of the Al-Aqsa Mosque gates, in addition to orders of forcible removal without them committing any violations.

The Israeli authorities iron scaffolds erected by the Western Wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque, without asking for permission from the Islamic Endowment (Waqf) Department, constitutes yet another violation of international law and the religious rights of the Palestinian people.

The report mentioned that Israeli forces also detained women, who were present in Al-Aqsa Mosque compound surroundings, during Israeli settler incursions into the mosque without any legal justification.

The report also covered the demolition of Palestinian homes and commercial shops, forcing them to pay the demolishing costs or forcing them to demolish their own property instead. These forms of demolition lead to forced, systematic, and unjustified displacement of Palestinians from East Jerusalem.

Euro-Med concluded the report by calling on the international community “to shoulder its responsibilities under international law and to protect Palestinians in Jerusalem against such systematic violations.”

Euro-Med went on to call on all United Nations organizations and the European Union to take “a clear and firm position towards such illegal practices, especially regarding the restrictions on religious freedoms and the demolition of homes.”

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