28 February 2002 (A/ES-10/149-S/2002/190)

Letter sent by Mr. Marwan Jilani, Charge d’Affaires, a.i., Deputy Permanent Observer of Palestine to the U.N., to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the President of the Security Council and the President of the General Assembly: (Israeli Occupying Forces Shoot at Pregnant Women)

I have been instructed to bring the following to your urgent attention. Today, as part of the ongoing Israeli escalation of terror being waged against the Palestinian people, Israeli occupying forces, backed by tanks and helicopter gunships, launched a major assault on refugee camps in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. In the Balata refugee camp near Nablus, Israeli occupying forces fired heavy machine guns and fired missiles into the refugee camp, cutting off power and plunging the camp into complete darkness. Also, dozens of Israeli tanks entered the city of Jenin from three directions and surrounded a refugee camp, shooting from tank-mounted machine guns and helicopter gunships. Furthermore, Israeli occupying forces attacked the Aida refugee camp in Bethlehem as well as the Khan Yunis and Rafah refugee camps in the Gaza Strip.

This latest Israeli criminal aggression resulted in the killing of eleven Palestinians and the injury of more than one hundred Palestinians, some of them critically. It also caused physical destruction and devastation to Palestinian buildings and infrastructure, all located in densely populated refugee camps, endangering the lives of thousands of Palestinians, threatening to lead to a massacre of Palestinian refugees. These new war crimes committed by Prime Minister Sharon and his government illustrate their complete disregard for the lives of Palestinian civilians, including women and children.

Also, on Sunday, 25 February 2002, Israeli occupying forces opened fire on a car at a checkpoint near the Balata refugee camp in Nablus, seriously wounding a pregnant Palestinian woman on her way to the hospital to give birth. The very next day, 26 February 2002, at the same Israeli checkpoint, Israeli occupying forces opened fire at another Palestinian car, killing Mr. Mohammed Hayek, critically injuring his father and wounding his pregnant wife as they too were rushing to the hospital. These war crimes are clearly correlated with the recent decision by the Israeli government to escalate its bloody military campaign against the Palestinian people.

We hold Prime Minister Sharon and his government fully responsible for the above-mentioned crimes and other violations committed, especially those constituting war crimes and State terrorism, against the Palestinian people. The international community, particularly the Security Council, cannot stand idly by while the Israeli occupying forces continue to carry out this bloody military campaign against the Palestinian people and the Palestinian Authority. During the Security Council debate regarding the grave situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Jerusalem, which convened on 21, 26 and 27 February 2002, the broad participation of Member States of the United Nations reflected the seriousness of the situation and the grave danger facing the Palestinian population. We therefore reiterate our call for the Security Council to take immediate and necessary action to bring all Israeli violations against the Palestinian people to an immediate end and to provide the necessary protection for the Palestinian civilians.

In follow up to our previous 99 letters to you regarding the crisis situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Jerusalem, dated from 29 September 2000 to 21 February 2002 (A/55/432-S/2000/921; A/55/437-S/2000/930; A/55/450-S/2000/957; A/55/466-S/2000/971; A/55/474-S/2000/984; A/55/490-S/2000/993; A/ES-10/39-S/2000/1015; A/ES-10/40-S/2000/1025; A/ES-10/42-S/2000/1068; A/ES-10/43-S/2000/1078; A/ES-10/44-S/2000/1093; A/ES-10/45-S/2000/1104; A/ES-10/46-S/2000/1107; A/ES-10/47-S/2000/1116; A/ES-10/48-S/2000/1129; A/ES-10/49-S/2000/1154; A/ES-10/50-S/2000/1173; A/ES-10/51- S/2000/1185; A/ES-10/52-S/2000/1206; A/ES-10/53-S/2000/1247; A/ES-10/54-S/2001/7; A/ES-10/55-S/2001/33; A/ES-10/56-S/2001/50; A/ES-10/57-S/2001/101; A/ES-10/58-S/2001/131; A/ES-10/59-S/2001/156; A/ES-10/60-S/2001/175; A/ES-10/61- S/2001/189; A/ES-10/64-S/2001/209; A/ES-10/65-S/2001/226; A/ES-10/66-S/2001/239; A/ES-10/67-S/2001/255; A/ES- 10/68-S/2001/284; A/ES-10/69-S/2001/295; A/ES-10/70-S/2001/304; A/ES-10/71-S/2001/314; A/ES-10/72-S/2001/332; A/ES-10/75-S/2001/352; A/ES-10/76-S/2001/372; A/ES-10/79-S/2001/418; A/ES-10/80-S/2001/432; A/ES-10/81-S/2001/447; A/ES-10/82-S/2001/463; A/ES-10/83-S/2001/471; A/ES-10/84-S/2001/479; A/ES-10/85-S/2001/486; A/ES-10/86-S/2001/496; A/ES-10/87-S/2001/504; A/ES-10/88-S/2001/508; A/ES-10/89-S/2001/544; A/ES-10/90-S/2001/586; A/ES-10/91-S/2001/605; A/ES-10/92-S/2001/629; A/ES-10/93-S/2001/657; A/ES-10/94-S/2001/669; A/ES-10/95-S/2001/686; A/ES-10/96-S/2001/697;A/ES-10/97-S/2001/708; A/ES-10/98-S/2001/717; A/ES-10/99S/2001/742; A/ES-10/100-S/2001/754; A/ES10/101-S/2001/783; A/ES-10/102-S/2001/785; A/ES-10/103-S/2001/798; A/ES10/104-S/2001/812; A/ES-10/105-S/2001/814; A/ES-10/107-S/2001/821; A/ES-10/108-S/2001/826; A/ES-10/111-S/2001/880; A/ES-10/112-S/2001/918; A/ES-10/114-S/2001/928; A/ES-10/115-S/2001/932; A/ES-10/116-S/2001/941; A/ES-10/117-S/2001/971 A/ES-10/118-S/2001/989; A/ES-10/119-S/2001/991; A/ES-10/121-S/2001/1007, A/ES-10/122-S/2001/1024; A/ES-10/123-S/2001/1036; A/ES-10/124-S/2001/1084; A/ES-10/125-S/2001/1092; A/ES-10/126-S/2001/1118; A/ES-10/128-S/2001/1149; A/ES-10/129-S/2001/1166; A/ES-10/133-S/2000/1239; A/ES-10/134-S/2001/126; A/ES-10/136-S/2002/18; A/ES-10/137-S/2002/39; A/ES-10/138-S/2002/48; A/ES-10/139-S/2002/58; A/ES-10/140-S/2002/89; A/ES-10/141-S/2002/95; A/ES-10/142-S/2002/102; A/ES-10/143-S/2002/121; A/ES-10/144-S/2002/142; A/ES-10/145-S/2002/146; A/ES-10/146-S/2002/165; A/ES-10/147-S/2002/175;A/ES-10/148-S/2002/182 and A/ES-10/149-S/2002/186), I regret to inform you that, since my last letter to you, Israeli occupying forces have killed more than 18 Palestinians and have incurred more than a hundred injuries, many severe and permanent, among the Palestinian people.