Five Palestinian children were killed when a suspecious object exploded in al-Rabwat al-Gharbiya area in Khan Yunis at about 07:30 Thursday 22/11/2001
Mustafa Abdul-Majid al-Astal, lives about fifty meters from the explosion site, said in his affidavit to Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights that he heard a high, close explosion.
He said he found parts of children’s bodies and a hole in the ground.
Al-Astal called an ambulance and started to collect the children parts with some neighbors.
Al-Astal reported that an Israeli force entered the same area the night before and that the road where the bomb was, only 150 meters from “Gani Tal” settlement, which is the used by the students in the area to go to school every day.
The five children were identified by their bags.
They are: Muhammad Na’im Abdul-Karim al-Astal, thirteen-years-old and in the eighth level at school.
Akram Na’im Abdul-Karim al-Astal, six-years-old in his first year at school.
Anis Idris Muhammad al-Astal, ten-years-old in the fifth level at school.
Umad Idris Muhammad al-Astal, twelve-years-old and in the eighth level at school.
Muhammad Sultan Muhammad al-Astal, eleven-years-old and in the seventh level at school.
Ahmad Dhib al-Astal, a 21-years-old farmer, was wounded in his farm near the explosion site.
Students of the area go to Abdullah Syam Basic School in al Amal area.
There is a strong possibility that the Israeli forces are involved in the accident, especially as the same area has been subject to frequent Israeli attacks.
Al-Mezan Center is highly concerned with this massacre, especially because it is not the first time Palestinian children die in the same way.
Three Palestinian persons were killed in Rafah in the same way on 28/9/2001.
In the light of this Israeli escalation, the Center believes that Israel is determined to pursue its aggression against Palestinian civilians and their property, which kills and wounds them.
This massacre falsifies the Israeli claims of cease-fire, and that Palestinians are held responsible for the ongoing clashes.
These claims aim to delude the international community.
As such, the Center reaffirms its demand of immediate international intervention to put an end to the Israeli crimes being perpetrated against Palestinian civilians and their property in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
The Center calls the United Nations and all the International organizations interested in protecting children to pressure Israel to stop killing Palestinian children and to take suitable procedures to bring the Israeli war criminals, those who perpetrated and ordered such crimes, to justice.