The United Nations ‘Fragmented lives: Humanitarian overview 2015’ has been released by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA). The 2015 report found the Israeli occupation “to be the main trigger of humanitarian needs among Palestinians in the occupied territory.”
That 2015 marked the highest number of deaths and injuries among West Bank Palestinians caused by Israeli forces in a decade, 30 children killed by Israeli soldiers and settlers, the highest figure recorded since 2006.
Just this month, Palestinians enter their 50th year under Israeli occupation. David Carden, head of UNOCHA in the occupied Palestinian territory said, “the devastating impact of this ongoing situation, mainly on 4.8 million Palestinians who are increasingly vulnerable due to violations of international humanitarian and human rights law,”
Diana Buttu, a Palestinian lawyer, stressed that the death of 146 Palestinians and 25 Israelis to the “policies and practices related to the Israeli occupation, including settler violence,” and an “upsurge in violence … marked by a sharp rise in stabbing, ramming, and shooting attacks by unaffiliated Palestinians against Israeli civilians and forces, and widespread clashes”.
In the series of clashes and response attacks, Palestinian injuries took place mainly from tear gas inhalation, rubber-coated steel bullets and live ammunition shot by Israeli forces. Such incidents raised concerns by the UN over Israel’s “excessive use of force and arbitrary deprivation of life, including multiple cases where perpetrators and suspected perpetrators shot and killed on the spot.”
Diana Buttu, also a former adviser to the Palestine Liberation Organization, advised the need to press for sanctions against Israel and to hold it accountable for these human rights abuses.
In 2014, an arson attack by Israeli settlers left three members of a Palestinian family dead, and the lone survivor was a five-year-old boy with burns over 60 percent of his body.
By the end of 2015, more than 6,000 Palestinians were incarcerated for “security” offences, the highest such number since 2010. More than 420 children were also imprisoned, including six held in administrative detention without charge or trial.
In addition by Tariq Dana, a senior research fellow at Birzeit University, “such report don’t end up in conclusions that blatantly call for the end of the occupation,” he added that the Israeli authorities review the ‘rules of engagement… calling for halting the ‘expansion of settlements’ rather than entirely dismantling them [for] violating international law.”