Omar Yaghi

June 18th, 2020: Omar Yaghi, 8 months, died of lack of treatment for a medical condition when he was denied a permit by Israeli authorities who run the West Bank and Gaza under martial law.

The Israeli Annexation Plan, announced last month by Israeli authorities, and put into practice this month, has apparently claimed its first victim, as a Palestinian baby scheduled for a lifesaving operation in Israel.

An eight-month-old infant from the Gaza Strip was the first to die under this new system of closure and annexation – but the Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHRI) warn that he will not be the last.

Omar Yaghi, with a cardiac condition, died on Thursday after Israeli military officials denied his family the access to go to Israel for his scheduled May 24th surgery at Sheba Medical Center.

The stated reason for the denial of his travel was the cessation of coordination between the Palestinian Civil Affairs Committee (PCAC) – a part of the Palestinian Authority (PA) – and the Israeli military authorities which control all access to the West Bank and Gaza, and all internal roadways and travel.

Israeli authorities have long used an antiquated and nearly-impossible to navigate ‘permit’ system which requires Palestinians who need medical care to go to a military base and wait for hours or days to try to get a permit to reach the hospital. This system has cost hundreds of lives over the years, and now, with the Palestinian Authority pulling its implicit consent for this martial law, there are no permits being issued and therefore, no travel for medical care.

The problem lies not with the Palestinian Authority, however, as most media have tried to claim, but with Israel, which has an obligation under international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention to provide the means for the population under its military’s occupation since 1967 to be allowed freedom of access to medical care.

According to Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHRI), “In recent days, we have seen a spike in requests for help from Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank who need medical treatment that is not available locally. These patients, some in critical condition and who require life-saving treatment, have told us that the Palestinian agencies in charge of liaising with the Israeli authorities have stopped transferring exit permit applications that were submitted for medical reasons.

“Patients further reported that the Palestinian Ministry of Health refuses to refer them to Israeli hospitals or cover the cost of treatment in Israel. Consequently, Israeli hospitals have refused to admit back organ transplant patients who have returned to their homes for post-surgery rehabilitation.

“Among the people affected are two leukemia patients from Nablus aged 25 and 46, whose routine treatment at Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem was halted over lack of coverage by the Palestinian Authority; a 37-year-old lung transplant patient who stopped receiving care at Beilinson Hospital as the Palestinian Ministry of Health refused to cover the 900 Shekel per-visit cost; an eight-month-old baby with a heart condition from the Gaza Strip who has been unable to travel for treatment at Sheba Hospital because the Palestinian Civilian Affairs Committee refuses to forward an exit permit application for him and a 24-year-old woman from the Gaza Strip who requires ongoing treatment for orthopedic issues and whose application for a permit was denied by the Palestinian coordination. ”

The Israeli human rights group concludes, “Given the fact that Israel controls the area, the crossings and the living conditions of the Palestinian population, and since Israel instituted the failed permit system, it shoulders the responsibility to find a quick solution to enable patients to travel freely to receive medical treatment. Most patients in the Gaza Strip travel for treatment in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, and their health must not be affected. We are on the brink of medical chaos. Right now, hundreds are affected. Thousands will be affected soon.”

It is worth mentioning that the child had an appointment scheduled for May 24th, at Tal HaShomer Israeli Medical Center, but when no permit to leave Gaza was issued, the appointment was rescheduled for June 21st.

His condition then worsened, and he was rushed to the Intensive Care Unit of the Rantisi Hospital in Gaza, and he died at dawn of June 18th.

Omar was from the Gaza Strip. Source: IMEMC

Shadi Bana

February 6, 2020: Shadi Bana, 45, a Palestinian citizen of Israel who ran a flower shop in Jerusalem, was shot and killed by Israeli border police in Jerusalem on Thursday. Israeli authorities claimed that the florist was shot because he “had a gun and attempted to fire at police”.

Bana’s family was shocked by his killing, and the claim that he had been involved in any kind of politically-motivated attack, saying he had no ties to any political parties or groups.

A neighbor who worked near Bana’s home told reporters from the Israeli daily Ha’aretz, “He was an ordinary guy from the neighborhood. He has no interest in politics. It’s really surprising that he came to do such a thing.”

Bana was shot and killed just outside the Lion’s Gate into Jerusalem’s Old City. He was originally from Haifa, in northern Israel. Israeli sources note that he had a criminal record.

He was the owner of a small flower shop, but his brother told reporters that he was suffering economically.

Israeli sources claimed that Bana had converted to Islam several months ago, but his brother told Ha’aretz reporters, “We don’t know about this whole business of him converting to Islam. He has more than a few Muslim friends but I don’t know if he converted – his entire conduct is strange and he mostly lived as a loner.”

Bana was the fourth Palestinian killed on Thursday. Tariq Lu’ay Badwan and Yazan Monther Abu Tabeekh were both killed by Israeli forces invading the city of Jenin, while Mohammad Salman al-Haddad was killed in Hebron.

Shadi was from Nazareth, in northern Israel. Source: IMEMC

Ibrahim Khalil ash-Shantaf

January 29, 2020: Ibrahim Khalil ash-Shantaf, 21, died in an accident in a siege busting tunnel, near Gaza city. The Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) reported that one of its fighters was killed in a tunnel accident.

The Brigades said the fighter, identified as Ibrahim Khalil ash-Shantaf, 21, was from Sheikh Radwan neighborhood in Gaza city.

It added that he was killed in an accident while working in one of its tunnels near the perimeter fence on the besieged and impoverished coastal region.

It is worth mentioning that hundreds of Palestinians have been killed or injured, in similar accidents. Many of them were not members of the Brigades or any armed resistance group and were working in the tunnels to provide for their families.

Most of the tunnels in Gaza are used for smuggling food, fuel, and medicine into the besieged Gaza Strip.

Ibrahim was from Gaza City. Source: IMEMC

Sami Abu Diak

November 26, 2019: Sami Abu Diak, 37, died at an Israeli hospital after he was systematically denied specialized medical care, leading to serious complications that resulted in his death.

The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee confirmed, on Tuesday morning, that a detainee identified as Sami Abu Diak, 37, was only moved to Assaf Harofeh Israeli Medical Center after a sharp decline in his health.

It also said that its lawyers filed several appeals with Israeli courts, asking to allow his release to receive specialized medical treatment in Palestine, or abroad, but its requested were all denied.

“Sami was subjected to a deliberate policy denying him the right to adequate medical care,” the committee said, “Despite the serious decline in his health, and the constant complications, he was not provided with the urgently needed specialized care, and was only moved to a hospital when he neared death.”

It is worth mentioning that Sami Abu Diak, 37, was serving three life terms and an additional 30 years in prison.

He was taken prisoner on July 17, 2002, and was first diagnosed with intestinal cancer in August of 2015, and underwent surgery, after the prison authority moved him to Soroka Medical Center, but due to a misdiagnosis and a medical error, he faced serious complications, and some of his intestines were removed.

Abu Diak underwent various surgeries, and suffered further complications, including pulmonary and renal failures, in addition to cancer and skin poisoning, and his condition continued to deteriorate since then.

Before his death, Abu Diak’s final message was:

To those with a living conscience…

I am living my final hours and days, there is nothing I would like more than spending them near my mother; between my loved ones, I would love to utter my last breath in my mother’s arms; I do not wish to die cuffed and shackled,

I do not want to die in front of a jailor who loves death, and feeds on our pain and suffering,

Will my words even reach the ears and minds of leaders?!

I am telling you, if I die far away from my mother, I will never forgive you…

Detainee Sami Abu Diak

Sami was from Sielet ath-Thaher town, south of the northern West Bank city of Jenin. Source: IMEMC

Mohammad Fawzi Najjar

September 11th, 2019: Mohammad Fawzi Najjar, 25, died in an explosion in a tunnel in southern Gaza.

The al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, confirmed that one of its fighters was killed, on Thursday at dawn, in an accident in a siege-busting tunnel, east of Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip.

In a statement, the Brigades said the Palestinian, identified as Mohammad Fawzi Najjar, 25, was killed in what it described as an accident in a tunnel, east of Khan Younis.

It is worth mentioning that Mohammad was the brother of Abdullah Fawzi Najjar, 22, also a member of the al-Qassam Brigades, who was killed when Israeli war jets fired missiles at a tunnel, on July 29th, 2014, during the summer offensive on Gaza.

Mohammad was from Khuza’a town, east of Khan Younis. Source: IMEMC

Saleh Hamad

September 9, 2019: Saleh Hamad, 22, drowned to death in Bosnia-Herzegovina, after he tried to immigrate to Europe to escape the dire conditions in the besieged Gaza Strip.

The family of Saleh Hamad, 22, from Beit Hanoun, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip, said it was officially informed that its son drowned to death.

They stated that he managed to leave the Gaza Strip and was trying to seek refuge in Europe, adding that they lost contact with him three weeks ago.

It is worth mentioning that another Palestinian, identified as Dr. Tamer Sultan, 38, and a father of three children, died on August 17th, died just days after he was admitted to a hospital in Bosnia.

He fled Gaza and tried to seek refuge in Bosnia; he was initially hospitalized suffering from severe fatigue and seriously swollen feet.

His autopsy also revealed that he suffered from a spinal tumor, which apparently was never discovered before his death.

Media sources in Gaza said Sultan did not only try to escape poverty and the deadly siege on Gaza, but was also repeatedly arrested and imprisoned by Hamas before he fled the coastal region.

Saleh was from Beit Hanoun, in northern Gaza. Source: IMEMC

Mo’in Suleiman al-‘Attar

September 8, 2019: Mo’in Suleiman al-‘Attar, 42, was killed in what was described as an accidental explosion in Central Gaza.

The Palestinian Health Ministry in the Gaza Strip has reported that the Palestinian has been identified as Mo’in Suleiman al-‘Attar, 42. He was killed in the explosion in Deir al-Balah, in central Gaza.

Mo’in was first seriously wounded, before he was rushed to the al-Aqsa Hospital where he succumbed to his serious injuries.

The al-Quds Brigades, the armed wing of the Islamic Jihad, said the fighter was one of its members.

Mo’in was from Deir al-Balah in central Gaza. Source: IMEMC

Ala’ Ziad al-Gharabily

August 28, 2019: Ala’ Ziad al-Gharabily was one of three Palestinian officers who were killed in a bombing which was carried out by two suicide bombers in Gaza.

The Interior and National Security Ministry in the Gaza Strip identified the officers as:

Lieutenant Salama Majed Nadim, 32.
Lieutenant Wael Mousa Khalifa, 45.
Deputy Officer Ala’ Ziad al-Gharabily.

It said that the three were with the local traffic and rescue police forces, and added that three others were injured.

The Spokesperson of the Interior Ministry in Gaza, Eyad el-Bozom, said the bombings were carried out by two suicide bombers, southwest of Gaza city, on Tuesday at night.

He said that two suicide bombers attacked two police checkpoints.

Two days after the attacks, Mousa Abu Marzouq, a member of the political bureau of Hamas, stated that the security forces of the Interior Ministry in Gaza arrested ten persons who are believed to be members of the cell that carried out the two bombings.

For his part, Eyad el-Bozom, the spokesperson of Gaza’s Interior Ministry, stated on Wednesday evening that the investigations are advancing and that the identity of those behind the bombing have been ascertained.

“Those behind these cowardice attacks are serving Israel’s interests,” he said, “They are trying to destabilize the Gaza Strip.”

El-Bozom also stated that the Interior Ministry will release more details of the bombing once all investigations are concluded.

In related news, the Higher Follow-Up Committee of National and Islamic Factions in Gaza, held a meeting to discuss the bombings and the current situation in the Gaza Strip.

It held Israel and its collaborators responsible for the attacks, and called on the security forces in Gaza to act fast and protect the internal front in the coastal region, especially since Israel is the first beneficiary of internal tension and instability.

Ala’ was a Palestinian police officer, from the Zeitoun neighborhood in Gaza city. Source: IMEMC

Wael Mousa Khalifa

August 28, 2019: Wael Mousa Khalifa, 45, was one of three Palestinian officers who were killed in a bombing which was carried out by two suicide bombers in Gaza.

The Interior and National Security Ministry in the Gaza Strip identified the officers as:

Lieutenant Salama Majed Nadim, 32.
Lieutenant Wael Mousa Khalifa, 45.
Deputy Officer Ala’ Ziad al-Gharabily.

It said that the three were with the local traffic and rescue police forces, and added that three others were injured.

The Spokesperson of the Interior Ministry in Gaza, Eyad el-Bozom, said the bombings were carried out by two suicide bombers, southwest of Gaza city, on Tuesday at night.

He said that two suicide bombers attacked two police checkpoints.

Two days after the attacks, Mousa Abu Marzouq, a member of the political bureau of Hamas, stated that the security forces of the Interior Ministry in Gaza arrested ten persons who are believed to be members of the cell that carried out the two bombings.

For his part, Eyad el-Bozom, the spokesperson of Gaza’s Interior Ministry, stated on Wednesday evening that the investigations are advancing and that the identity of those behind the bombing have been ascertained.

“Those behind these cowardice attacks are serving Israel’s interests,” he said, “They are trying to destabilize the Gaza Strip.”

El-Bozom also stated that the Interior Ministry will release more details of the bombing once all investigations are concluded.

In related news, the Higher Follow-Up Committee of National and Islamic Factions in Gaza, held a meeting to discuss the bombings and the current situation in the Gaza Strip.

It held Israel and its collaborators responsible for the attacks, and called on the security forces in Gaza to act fast and protect the internal front in the coastal region, especially since Israel is the first beneficiary of internal tension and instability.

Wael was a Palestinian police officer from Gaza city. Source: IMEMC

Salama Majed Nadim

August 28, 2019: Salama Majed Nadim, 32, was one of three Palestinian officers who were killed in a bombing which was carried out by two suicide bombers in Gaza.

The Interior and National Security Ministry in the Gaza Strip identified the officers as:

Lieutenant Salama Majed Nadim, 32.
Lieutenant Wael Mousa Khalifa, 45.
Deputy Officer Ala’ Ziad al-Gharabily.

It said that the three were with the local traffic and rescue police forces, and added that three others were injured.

The Spokesperson of the Interior Ministry in Gaza, Eyad el-Bozom, said the bombings were carried out by two suicide bombers, southwest of Gaza city, on Tuesday at night.

He said that two suicide bombers attacked two police checkpoints.

Two days after the attacks, Mousa Abu Marzouq, a member of the political bureau of Hamas, stated that the security forces of the Interior Ministry in Gaza arrested ten persons who are believed to be members of the cell that carried out the two bombings.

For his part, Eyad el-Bozom, the spokesperson of Gaza’s Interior Ministry, stated on Wednesday evening that the investigations are advancing and that the identity of those behind the bombing have been ascertained.

“Those behind these cowardice attacks are serving Israel’s interests,” he said, “They are trying to destabilize the Gaza Strip.”

El-Bozom also stated that the Interior Ministry will release more details of the bombing once all investigations are concluded.

In related news, the Higher Follow-Up Committee of National and Islamic Factions in Gaza, held a meeting to discuss the bombings and the current situation in the Gaza Strip.

It held Israel and its collaborators responsible for the attacks, and called on the security forces in Gaza to act fast and protect the internal front in the coastal region, especially since Israel is the first beneficiary of internal tension and instability.

Salama was a Palestinian police officer, from the Zeitoun neighborhood in Gaza city. Source: IMEMC