Occupied Territories

RHR statement on the use of administrative detention on suspected Jewish terrorists

No Comments 04 August 2015

Suspicions that the recent arson attack in the Palestinian village of Duma was committed by Jewish terrorists has resulted in calls for the use of tools such as administrative detention to be used against suspected perpetrators.  Continue Reading

General, Occupied Territories

The story behind the photo

3 Comments 03 August 2015

The following photo of RHR Palestinian field worker Zakaria Sadah (blue checkered shirt) went “viral” and was shared widely online (mostly Hebrew) without proper context or understanding.  This situation has resulted in the vilification of our worker by settlers and some Palestinians. Please see below for the story behind the  photo. Continue Reading

Occupied Territories

Sorrow punctuated by Sorrow: On the Murder in Duma

1 Comment 03 August 2015

RHR has been assisting in handling the situation in Duma - the site of the horrific arson attack on Friday which killed a toddler and critically injured his family - since our Palestinian field worker, Zakaria Sadah, was one of the first on the scene, and helped coordinate the helicopter evacuation of the family to Israeli hospitals. Yesterday, Rabbi Ascherman and other RHR rabbis visited the site and later Soroka hospital, where the injured father is being treated. Please find his writings on the day below:

Sorrow punctuated by sorrow: On the Murder in Duma

Rabbi Arik Ascherman

I had already been shocked to the depths of my soul seeing the pictures on Friday. But, when you arrive at the burnt houses in Duma, the smell hits you. You feel and hear a family’s world turned to coal crunching beneath your feet. Everything seems calm in Duma. The family tells us the story matter of factly without tears or raising their voices in anger. Yet, we know that unfathomable pain and anger are seething just beneath the surface. And I know that I cannot wear my kippa, and we cannot travel around without escort. Is this what we returned to Zion for? In addition to Zakaria, I am accompanied by Rabbis Nava Hefetz and Sivan Malkin-Maas.

 

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Zakaria Sadah, Rabbis Navah Hefetz and Sivan Malkin-Maas, a family member and myself in the Dawabshe home

Mourning tent in Duma

Mourning tent in Duma

From Duma, we continue to Mreyer, where on Saturday Israelis tried to invade. They were forced to flee by the villagers, and an army hummer picked them up. Shorly after, a fire broke out on the villages agricultural lands. I have always travelled cautiously but freely in Mreyer. Today I was told that it would not be safe to travel unaccompanied. The anger was too great. Neither have the supporters of the settlers calmed down after having extracted a price of blood and destruction. In this region unquenchable anger is pitted against unquenchable anger, for all know that THEY are the victims. This does not mean that all is symmetrical or balanced. There is a people with all the power in their hands, including the power to determine the fate of another people. But all remind me of Yehuda Amichai’s poem, “From the place where we are right flowers will never grow in the spring…”

Burnt Mreyer agricultural land

Burnt Mreyer agricultural land

On the way to Soroka hospital we hear the bitter tidings that Shira Banki will see no more flowers in this world.

Shira Banki

In the Soroka intensive care waiting room we meet with the family. I am glad to see my friend Sahde Ibn Bari there, whom I know from the struggles of the Negev Bedouin community, and who will be my lawyer when I go on trial on November 10th for my arrest in El-Araqib. I know the family will be taken care of. There wasn’t much we could say to each other I offered Mi Sh’Berakh prayers for Saed, Riham and Ahmed. Instead of “amen” after each Mi Sh’Berakh, the family answered “Allah Kareem.” Let’s all pray for them.

With me were Rabbis Yehiel Grenimann, Anita Steiner, Mordechai Goldberg, Yonatan Saidoff and Donna Kirschenbaum.

Rabbi Mordechai Goldberg, Attorney Ibn Bari and I am with the Dawabshe family in the Soroka Hospital, where Saed is in intensive care

Rabbi Mordechai Goldberg, Attorney Ibn Bari and I am with the Dawabshe family in the Soroka Hospital, where Saed is in intensive care

 

Rabbi Yehiel Grenimann, Attorney Ibn Bari, and Rabbi Mordechai Goldberg with the Dawabshe family at Soroka hospital

Rabbi Yehiel Grenimann, Attorney Ibn Bari, and Rabbi Mordechai Goldberg with the Dawabshe family at Soroka hospital

 

Rabbis Yonatan Seidoff, Anita Steiner and Donna Kirschenbaum with the Dawabshe family at Soroka Hospital

Rabbis Yonatan Seidoff, Anita Steiner and Donna Kirschenbaum with the Dawabshe family at Soroka Hospital

Finally, we joined a Bedouin community vigil outside the hospital. We hadn’t known that it would be taking place, and the police didn’t quite know what to do with the Jews that had suddenly arrived. I wasn’t entirely comfortable with some of the words spoken and chanted, such as that all our government ministers are war criminals. When I spoke, I noted that all of our leaders had condemned this act, but that they had created a “golem sh’kam al yotzro” (A Frankenstein monster that had turned on its creator.” I prayed for a world in which no people rules over another, and in which we all honor God’s Image in every human being. Again, I recalled Yehuda Amichai….

Bedouin community vigil outside Soroka Hospital.

Bedouin community vigil outside Soroka Hospital

Read RHR’s statement on the murder at Duma

General

RHR mourns the loss of Shira Banki

No Comments 03 August 2015

Rabbis for Human Rights mourns the death of Shira Banki, 16 years old, who died from the wounds she sustained on Thursday, July 30th when stabbed at the Jerusalem Pride Parade by an Israeli man.

We pray that God will comfort her family and friends during this terrible time.

Shira Banki

General, Occupied Territories

Photos: Jahalin summer camp at Abu Nawahr

No Comments 03 August 2015

Summer camp for the children of the Jahalin community Abu Nawahr (next to Maale Adumim) has begun! RHR is working this year in two different locations  (Abu Nawahr 1 and Abu Nawahr 2), with the possibility for one additional program at the encampment El Muntar. The total number of children attending is about 85, and the camp will run for two weeks , meeting three mornings a week. Continue Reading

Occupied Territories, Press Releases

After Condemning Jewish Violence Friday, Security Forces Permit it Saturday

2 Comments 02 August 2015

PRESS RELEASE | AUGUST 2 2015

 

Same Old Games: After Condemning Jewish Violence Friday, Security Forces Permit it on Saturday 

 

Rabbis for Human Rights: One day after the Israeli security forces condemned murderous violence against Palestinians,  they protect violent settlers near Qusra.  

 

On Saturday violent far-right activists came from the outpost of Esh Kodesh (“Holy Fire”) to a plot of land cultivated by Palestinian farmers from the village of Qusra. The area is classified “Area B”  and is under  Palestinian civilian control. There is no Israeli administered “state land” present, and there is no legitimate debate regarding ownership of the land the Palestinians  were attempting to work on. Despite it being Shabbat, the right-wing extremists attacked Palestinian farmers in front of Israeli army soldiers, preventing the farmers from completing their agriculture work.  The situation developed into a violent confrontation, and the soldiers present did not try to stop the right-wing extremists, but rather offered them protection.  Later, after the situation had de-escalated, a member of the police attacked Palestinians with a taser gun without cause.

 

 

 

RHR opposes any form of violence while condemning the Israeli security forces’ actions of tacitly permitting violence against Palestinian farmers by Jewish extremists. This behavior is especially egregious since it occurred in Area B.  Only one day after the shocking murder of a Palestinian toddler in the village of Duma, the army’s refusal to respond appropriately to violence by Jewish extremists demonstrates that no lessons have been learned as a result of Ali’s death. Israeli authorities must act decisively and strongly against Jewish violence and terror.

 

While it is natural that the security forces may identify more with their own people, procedures regarding law enforcement in situations involving violent Israelis must be clearly laid out and consistently implemented.

 

Photos by Zakaria Sadah, RHR field worker

Continue Reading

Occupied Territories

Rabbis pay condolence visit to Palestinian village after fatal arson attack

No Comments 02 August 2015

This morning RHR Rabbis Rabbi Arik Ascherman, Rabbi Nava Hefetz, and Rabbi Sivan Malkin-Maas met up with RHR Palestinian field worker Zakaria Sadah and visited the village of Duma for a condolence call.  On Friday two homes were burned in an arson attack resulting in the the death of a toddler and the severe injuries of his mother, father and older brother. Continue Reading

Occupied Territories

Horrific arson attack kills baby and seriously injures three

No Comments 31 July 2015

A horrific attack early this morning in the Palestinian village of Duma left one baby dead and 3 seriously injured. Continue Reading

General, Legal Work

Susya update: High Court hearing postponed

No Comments 30 July 2015

There is a postponement of the High Court hearing scheduled for August 3rd  on the appeal of the  residents of Susya, represented by RHR,  against the rejection of the master building plan submitted to the  Civil Administration planning committee.

Continue Reading

Legal Work, Occupied Territories

Photos: Shepherds from the settlement Susya trespass on private Palestinian lands

No Comments 30 July 2015

Yesterday morning, July 29 2015,  Rabbi Ascherman met Israeli settler shepherds on Palestinian Susya’s land. He writes: Continue Reading

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