April: Hundreds of settlers break into Al-Aqsa Mosque and isolating dozens of Jerusalemites from it...Three Martyrs in the city of Jerusalem…and continuing to detain the bodies of 12 Jerusalemite Martyrs…Arresting 214 Palestinians
Wadi Hilweh Information Center issued his monthly report in which it monitored the Israeli violations in the city of Jerusalem during the month of April 2016 as the occupation authorities continued their assaults against Jerusalemites and their properties.
The occupation forces arrested 214 Palestinians last April and demolished 4 residential establishments.
Israeli settlers protected by occupation authorities increased their level of targeting Al-Aqsa Mosque in April through carrying out break-ins and tours into its courtyards and attempting to practice their religious rituals during break-ins. Groups of the “alleged temple” had called to carry out group break-ins into Al-Aqsa Mosque during the days of Jewish Passover holiday.
The information center explained that 1868 settlers broke into Al-Aqsa Mosque in April during the morning and afternoon break-in sessions; 1011 settlers broke-in within a span of 5 days during Passover Holiday. Settlers who were protected by Special Forces deliberately provoked Jerusalemites inside the Mosque by performing their religious rituals (laying on the ground, mumbling and moving the body) during their break-ins. Al-Aqsa guards were able to confront several settlers’ attempt to pray inside the Mosque; three of Al-Awqaf employees were arrested.
Setters also attempted to provide offerings (sacrifice for Passover holiday) at the gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque after a series of calls and inciting sessions were made by the alleged temple groups to sacrifice offerings on the ruins of Al-Aqsa Mosque.
During Passover, the occupation authorities increased their deployment and presence at the gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque and the roads leading to it. They deliberately detained worshippers’ IDs before entering Al-Aqsa.
In preparation for Passover and during the holiday, the occupation authorities isolated dozens of Palestinians from Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem and the Old City. The information center monitored the isolation of 72 Palestinians from Al-Aqsa Mosque including 10 women and the deportation of 4 Jerusalemites from the Old City of Jerusalem and 10 young men from the city of Jerusalem; 6 of them were from the 1948 lands.
The number of settlers who broke into Al-Aqsa and number of Palestinians isolated from it are considered the highest since the beginning of the year.
Wadi Hilweh Information Center explained that three Palestinians passed away in April in the city of Jerusalem and at its entrances. On the 20th of April, Abdel Hamid Abu Sroor (19) from Aida refugee camp in Bethlehem passed away after carrying out an explosion inside a bus in West Jerusalem.
On the 27th of the month, Maram Saleh Abu Ismaeel (23) and her 16-year old brother Ibrahim Taha passed away after being shot on Qalandia checkpoint under the pretext of attempting to carry out a stabbing attack. After few days of the murder of the two Jerusalemites, the occupation authorities still refuse to release the cameras recordings that documented the shooting; note that the area is equipped with a set of surveillance cameras.
The occupation authorities continue to detain the bodies of 12 Jerusalemite Martyrs part of the collective punishment policy imposed on their families since the first moments of the Martyrdom of their sons. They are: Thaer Abu Ghazaleh (19), Hasan Khaled Manasra (15), Baha’ Mohammad Alayan (22), Ala’ Daoud Abu Jamal (32), Mutaz Ahmad Aweisat (16), Mohammad Abed Nimer (37), Abdel Muhsen Hassouneh (21), Mohammad Abu Khalaf (20), Fadwa Abu Ter (51), Fouad Abu Rajab (21) and Mohammad Jamal Kaloti (21). The Martyrs are from the Old City of Jerusalem, Jabal Al-Mukabber, Beit Hanina, Esawyeh, Kufor Aqab and Um Tuba
Occupation authorities carried out a series of arrests in April and targeted elderly Jerusalemites in addition to carrying out group arrests around the city of Jerusalem.
The information center monitored the arrest of 214 Palestinians from the city of Jerusalem including 52 minors, 27 elderly (50-73 years old), 16 women and 5 children under the age of responsibility (12 years).
Among the detainees were two students; one was arrested while heading to school in Silwan and the other after leaving school in the neighborhood of Beit Hanina. The forces also injured another Jerusalemite child with a rubber bullet in his head while he was heading to school.
Most of the arrests in April were carried after raiding residential homes, searched and damaging the contents of the house and confiscating some of the detainees’ personal items.
The geographical distribution of arrest was as follows: Esawyeh (51), Old City of Jerusalem (46), Silwan (37), Beit Hanina (14), Al-Tur and Jabal Al-Mukabber (9 each), Wadi Al-Joz (8), Kufor Aqab and Qalandia (7), Shu’fat (6), Shu’fat refugee camp (3), Anata and Al-Sowaneh (3 each). Several other arrests were executed at Al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates against Palestinians from the 1948 lands.
The occupation authorities transferred 4 young Jerusalemite men to administrative arrest.
Wadi Hilweh Information Center also explained that the occupation authorities targeted elderly Jerusalemites towards the middle of the month by arresting and isolating them from Al-Aqsa Mosque. On the 20th of April, the authorities imposed a complete siege on the village of Esawyeh and arrested 31 Jerusalemites. They also handed several notices to interrogate children and young men from the village. On the 22nd of the months (eve of Passover), the forces carried out a similar series of arrests in the Old City of Jerusalem and arrested 20 Jerusalemites; they were all isolated from Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The occupation authorities closed the residential house of prisoner Abed Dwayyat and also demolished 3 residential establishments.
The center explained that the house of prisoner Abed Dwayyat in the village of Sur Baher was closed following an order from the Commander of Internal Front in the occupation’s army and on charges of killing a settler last September after throwing stones towards his vehicle. The authorities closed the windows and doors using iron plates after the Israeli Supreme Court approved the closure and confiscation of the house even before convicting him of the charges against him. It is noteworthy that the case is still in court and the closure of the prisoner’s home displaced his mother and sister.
Also, the bulldozers demolished a house in the village of Jabal Al-Mukabber and displaced 6 individuals.
Sidawi family in the neighborhood of Beit Hanina and Nimer family in the village of Sur Baher self-demolished part of their homes in execution of the court’s orders and to avoid paying high fines and the demolition costs.
During April, the 64-year old Jerusalemite Zuheir Abu Khdeir was injured with a broken nose and suffered several bruises in the back of his head and his face in addition to swelling under his eyes after being assaulted by a group of settlers.
Last month, the occupation forces and intelligence also removed and burned olive seedlings that carried the names of Jerusalemite Martyrs; they were planted in Silwan on occasion of Earth Day.
At the end of April, occupation forces attacked the funeral of late Jamal Abbasi while burying him in Al-Rahmeh Gate Cemetery east of Al-Aqsa Mosque under the pretext of burying him in a land that was confiscated and is prohibited from being used. The forces sprayed pepper gas towards the participants and surrounded them inside the cemetery in an attempt to prevent them from leaving after finishing the funeral’s procedures.
The occupation authorities are still harassing Jerusalemites by establishing mobile checkpoints at the entrances and in the streets of Jerusalemites neighborhoods and villages in addition to issuing random fines to commercial stores not to mention the daily deployment and presence at the gates of the Old City of Jerusalem where young men get searched and harassed.