Amnesty International has condemned the Palestinian attacks against innocent Israelis, calling them “reprehensible” and without justification in a statement released on November 20, according to the Jerusalem Post. Of course, this statement wasn’t without criticizing Israel for their alleged illegal activities:
“Deliberately attacking civilians is contrary to one of the most fundamental principles of international law and can never be justified. Both the Israeli and Palestinian authorities must ensure they take measures, in line with their obligations under international human rights law, to protect the right to life and to bring to justice in fair trials those responsible for such attacks."
Amnesty also took Israel to task for its policies of retribution, including house demolitions and "extrajudicial executions."
"Amnesty International has also documented a pattern of unlawful killings, including extrajudicial executions, by Israeli forces against Palestinian civilians and a series of attacks by Israeli settlers on Palestinian civilians and homes over the past two months," the group said.
Israel has seen a surge in attacks against their citizens from Palestinians since October when erroneous reports of changes to the Temple Mount were circulated over social media. Additionally, the impatience over the peace process exacerbated the situation, with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas declaring that he was going to ignore the Oslo Accords. The Accords established the blueprint for a two-state solution.
Since Amnesty’s statement, there have been more attacks against Israeli citizens. A soldier was stabbed near Hebron, which has become one of the focal points for the violence, on November 25 near Fawwar Junction in the West Bank. YNetNews reported that the attacker, 19-year-old Mohammad Shobaki, was shot and killed.
The next day, Israeli security forces shot and killed another Palestinian man outside the Tapuah settlement in the West Bank. The Times of Israel added that the man exited his taxi and charged at Israeli solders with a knife shouting “Allahu Akbar.” The Jerusalem Post noted that it’s the same site where four Israeli soldiers were injured in a vehicular attack last Tuesday. In a separate incident, Israeli forces killed a 21-year-old Palestinian after conducting a raid to apprehend radicals and clear weapons caches in the village of Katane near Ramallah,
Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security service, released transcripts of the interrogations of two Palestinian boys, aged 11 and 14, who committed a string of stabbing two weeks ago. In the interviews, the two boys, who are cousins, who wanted to avenge a relative, but added that they know they made a mistake; they didn’t want to kill anyone; and one of them said he wanted to be back in school and no longer wished to “resist the occupation” (via Times of Israel):
The Shin Bet security service on Wednesday published the transcript of an interrogation of two cousins aged 11 and 14 from East Jerusalem who went on a stabbing rampage two weeks ago and wounded a light rail security guard.
In their interrogation, the two children said they carried out the attack as an act of revenge, without planning in advance and with no encouragement from any adults.
“I met my cousin at the entrance to school,” said the 11-year-old, who was not named. He said they decided to revenge the death of their relative, Muhammad Ali, also from Shuafat, who was shot dead as he tried to stab a Border Police officer near the Damascus Gate of the Old City on October 10.
“We travelled from Shuafat to Damascus Gate in order to stab a soldier but did not do it because the soldiers were in groups and we didn’t find one standing alone,” recalled the 11-year-old. “Then he told me ‘let’s do an attack together to revenge the death of Muhammad Ali.’ He opened his bag and showed me the knife. At Damascus Gate I bought a pair of scissors and then we boarded the light rail and looked for Jews to stab.”
Two light rail security guards boarded the train, but the boys decided “not to stab them because there were two of them. Later on one of them got off and we immediately attacked the one that remained.”
“I stabbed him in his head, my cousin stabbed him in his chest and stomach until the guard pushed me and fired three bullets in my stomach,” said the 11-year-old.
“I wanted to die as a shahid [a martyr] but now I understand I made a mistake and I am sorry,” he was quoted saying.
At the end of his interrogation, according to the Shin Bet, he repeated: “I made a mistake. I want to be in school like any normal person. I don’t want to resist the occupation any longer.”
The older cousin confessed early on in his interrogation, but said he did not mean to kill anyone, the TV report said.
It appears the violence won't subside anytime soon, as a 30-year-old woman and a border police officer were wounded in knife attacks in Jerusalem yesterday.