Israeli forces shoot and kill an older man hailing a cab and kill a child with a tear gas canister to the head. Since last Friday, 28 September 2018, 76 others injured, including 18 children—22 hit by live fire, including two children and one paramedic.
Documentation by Al Mezan Center for Human Rights shows that at 5:10pm on Tuesday, 2 October 2018, Israeli forces deployed near the fence to the east of Maghazi refugee camp in the Middle Area district lethally shot Ibrahim Ahmed Al-Arouqi, 74. The man had left the mosque near his house in the camp and was hailing a cab on his way to visit someone in the hospital. He was hit in the back with a live bullet, as confirmed by doctors at Al Aqsa Hospital in the same district.
At 3pm on Wednesday, 3 October 2018, Israeli forces located near Erez crossing used live ammunition and tear gas canisters on Palestinians who participated in the Great Return March demonstration in the North Gaza district. Ahmed Samir Abu Habel, a 15-year-old resident of Beit Lahia city in the same district, was lethally wounded by a tear gas canister tothe head. At 6:05pm the same day, he arrived to the Indonesia Hospital, where 20 minutes later, doctors pronounced him dead. Shooting continued until 8pm.
Following a consistent pattern of targeting paramedics at the demonstrations, Hani Mahmoud Wadi, a 33-year-old paramedic with the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, was injured by a tear gas canister to the stomach.
Al Mezan’s documentation shows that from the start of the Great Return March on 30 March 2018, 205 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, including ten whose dead bodies are being kept by Israeli forces—two of them children. Of these fatalities, 152 were killed in the demonstrations—including 31 children, one woman, two journalists, three paramedics, and three persons with disability. Another 10,310 people were injured, including 1,867 children, 424 women, 116 paramedics, and 115 journalists. Of those injured, 5,836 were hit by live fire, including 941 children and 114 women.
Al Mezan reiterates its condemnation of the use of lethal and other excessive force by the Israeli military, including sharpshooters, against protected persons in or near the access restricted areas.
Al Mezan stresses that the right to peaceful assembly and free expression are fundamental rights and must be respected. Unarmed protesters that do not pose any serious or imminent threat to the Israeli forces must not be shot. The excessive use of force indicates a continuation of unlawful targeting practices on the part of the Israeli forces despite its legal consequences and international condemnation.
Al Mezan urges the international community, led by the Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention, to take prompt and effective steps to ensure respect for international law and provide meaningful protection for protected persons throughout Gaza. The duty to protect civilians is a principal legal obligation and is, at this point in the conflict, a test of the authenticity of the international community’s commitment to their legal obligations, moral standards and humanitarian objectives vis-à-vis the Palestinian population.
Al Mezan stresses its position that the failure to hold to account perpetrators of human rights and international humanitarian law violations encourages the advancement of harmful policies and practices. Al Mezan therefore calls on the international community to activate accountability mechanisms in order to ensure that violators are brought to justice in accordance with international humanitarian and criminal law.