Thursday, 30 September 2010

Conference: Toxic munitions used against protesters in O. Jerusalem

[ 30/09/2010 - 09:50 AM ]

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- A conference was held by the Silwan defense committee and the Quds Information Center on Wednesday to discuss forming a probe into bombs Israeli soldiers used in crackdowns against Palestinians and other demonstrators during last week’s protests throughout occupied Jerusalem.

Protests erupted last week after an Israeli settler shot and killed Palestinian man Samer Sarhan and wounded others for allegedly throwing stones at his vehicle. The perpetrator was released on bail.

Members of the meeting offered evidence that Israeli forces used expired gas and stun grenades, which caused immediate effects such as fatigue, breathing difficulties, and vomiting, and may lead to other long-term effects against the environment.

Sheikh Ikrema Sabri, head of the Islamic supreme court, said that Israel “contravenes all international laws and norms, which prohibit the use of gas and toxic weapons.”

Silwan defense committee member Fakhri Abu Diyab said: “We collected some of the grenades that were tossed to determine their type, and we discovered that they had been expired for a year or six months; and doctors confirmed that the gas found inside them was oxidized and could cause serious damage to humans and the environment.”

In turn, Quds Information Center director Mohammed Sadiq called for an international investigation into the types of weapons used in Jerusalem during the protests, saying: “Jerusalem has turned into a laboratory to test weapons, gas, and bullets, and has also become an arena for them to be used indiscriminately.”

Rajih Horin, vice-president of the Arab paramedics federation, cited a decision issued by the central court of Tel Aviv in 2005 classifying tear gas as a very toxic substance used against people intended to cause deliberate harm to them. The Israeli Supreme Court recognized tear gas as a poisonous chemical in 2006, he added.

In a separate development, clashes broke out on Thursday in the Isawiya district of occupied Jerusalem when the Israeli army raided and launched an arrest campaign in the district.

Local residents said the Israeli forces arrested three men after storming their homes in Isawiya. The arrestees were taken to an unknown destination.

Israeli police and border guards carry out regular arrest campaigns against Palestinians in Jerusalem for allegedly throwing stones at cars belonging to Israeli settlers and participating in demonstrations and marches opposing the occupation and continued demolitions of the homes of Palestinians in the holy city.

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