There is much talk and violent responses to the abduction of three Israeli youth. Although we join with others in our condemnation of all abductions, yet the raids of cities and towns and refugee camps and siege over a whole population by the Israeli army calls on us to act.
The West Bank is under a full scale siege which includes hundreds of raids and assaults on homes, media stations, refugee camps, and even charitable societies. At this moment over 370 people have been kidnapped and detained including members of Hamas, members of Parliament, and released prisoners from the Shalit exchange. Four young people have been killed and at least 7 critically injured. Roads and checkpoints are closed and work permits are being ripped up. In addition, Israel bombs Gaza "targets" nightly. A three month year old baby was killed last night. This is what it means to live under military occupation and what is meant by the term "collective punishment".
The Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) condemns Israel's reprisals against the Palestinian population in carrying out its investigations of the disappeared settler youths and demands Israel to abide by the Geneva conventions.
We also believe that all of Palestinian society has been kidnapped. Every time a soldier enters a Palestinian home in the middle of the night and with violence threatens or takes away a brother, a sister, a father, or a mother this is kidnapping. In addition, there are 5,271 prisoners in Israeli jails with hundreds under "administrative detention." Their lives and their family's lives have been kidnapped.
This military siege and all its many forms is more than "collective punishment"; it is violence against Palestinian women and their families on a grand scale. It deserves our prayers and our actions to stop it. Here are some things you can do:
- Pray for our families in all the refugee camps and all the traumatized children through theWest Bank and Gaza.
- Hold Israel accountable for these gross violations of international law including SCR 1325 that demands protection of women;
- Send letters to your MPs, representatives, or Foreign Affair Ministers to demand that the attacks end;
- Pressure your governments to continue to seek a just Peace for both Palestinians and Israelis, and for the implementation of all UN resolutions pertaining to Palestine, so all peoples can live in peace and security.
*photo of mourners attending funeral of Sabrin in Jalazoune Camp on June