PCHR Condemns Israel Shooting-to-Kill Policy, Disregard for Palestinian Lives

Irshaid's body
Irshaid’s body

Ramallah, 14 Muharram 1437/ 26 October 2015 (MINA) – The Palestinian center for Human Rights (PCHR) Monday condemned srael’s disregard for the lives of Palestinian civilians and shooting-to-kill policy applied when the army and police suspect of potential stabbing attacks.

‘With the continuing international policy of silence over grave crimes and violations committed by Israeli forces in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), Israeli forces have continued to flagrantly commit more crimes and violations against the Palestinian civilians,’ said PCHR.

It called upon the international community to take immediate action, fulfill its legal and moral obligations to protect the Palestinian civilians in the occupied Palestinian Territory and exert efforts to put an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

“The silence of the international community towards these crimes encourages the Israeli government to continue its policy that violates the international humanitarian law, which means there will be more Palestinian civilian victims,” stressed the center.

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PCHR cited the case of 17-year-old Dania Ersheid – among other cases – who was fatally shot by Israeli border guards at approximately 13:30 on Sunday, 25 October 2015, in what the center described as ‘a new cold-blooded crime’.

Israeli Border Guards officers stationed at the entrance of the Ibrahimi Mosque, south of Hebron’s Old City, killed Ersheid, from al-Hawooz area, when she stopped to have her school bag searched. Ersheid’s body was taken to an unknown destination.

According to investigations conducted by PCHR and statement of an eyewitness, at approximately 13:30, Ersheid entered the Ibrahimi Mosque’s yard through a metal detector gate fixed between the aforementioned yard and the old market in the city. She obeyed the soldiers’ orders to be searched in the place where she was asked to stay.

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While one of the soldiers standing behind a desk was searching the girl’s school bag, a number of Border Guard officers gathered around her. Ersheid was standing behind an iron barrier erected by Israeli soldiers to allow persons subjected to searching pass through it.

The soldier, who was searching the bag, asked the girl, ‘Where is the knife? Where is the knife?’ The girl replied, ‘I do not have a knife,’ and put her hands up. She was extremely frightened. An officer fired a bullet around Ersheid, whereas the bullet hit the wall behind her.

She moved few steps backwards putting her hands up, but a number of bullets were fired at her. As a result, she fell to the ground and died.

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The girl did not pose any threat to the security and lives of Israeli soldiers. She was even putting her hands up when the soldier was talking to her and accused her of having a knife, said the center.

Furthermore, the area, where the girl was killed, was reinforced and backed-up. “Israeli forces could have arrested her instead of killing her if she posed any threat to them.”

The number of killed Palestinian civilians since early October has risen to 59 Palestinians, including 14 children and a woman, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.. (T/R07/R01)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)