A Palestinian human rights group has warned the residents of occupied East Jerusalem about “retaliatory procedures” by the Israeli occupation authorities in response to the Palestinian Authority application for recognition by the UN of an independent state of Palestine. According to the Jerusalem Centre for Social and Economic Rights, such measures include the abduction of elected parliamentarian Ahmed Attoun from outside the headquarters of the International Red Cross last Monday.
Attoun and three parliamentary colleagues have been seeking refuge in the Red Cross compound for more than a year in the face of an Israeli expulsion order. His abduction was followed by the escalation of attacks on Al-Aqsa Mosque during prayer times. Meanwhile, ongoing excavations in East Jerusalem and the Old City, government approval of more illegal Jewish settlements and the confiscation of dozens of shops and large areas of agricultural land near a military roadblock at the entrance of Shu’fat refugee camp are all matters of grave concern for the human rights body. The deportation of dozens of Bedouin families living to the north-east of Jerusalem adds to its concerns.
The Centre noted that there is a strong likelihood that the Israeli occupation authorities will escalate its human rights violations across all the occupied Palestinian territories, including Jerusalem, by intensifying Israel’s “Judaisation” programme. This involves the expulsion and deportation of Palestinian citizens, house demolitions (and charging the Palestinian owners for the costs of the demolition of their homes), further incursions into Palestinian territory, and condoning attacks by illegal settler-colonists on Palestinian civilians. The latter often take place under the watchful eyes of the Israel Defence Forces who take action against the victims of the attacks, not the terrorist settlers.