No Palestinian tears for ‘criminal’ Sharon



Nasser Abu Bakr & Adel Zaanoun | AFP

Published — Sunday 12 January 2014

Last update 15 May 2014 4:27 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

RAMALLAH, Palestinian Territories: Palestinians on Saturday hailed the death of former Israeli premier Ariel Sharon, describing him as a “criminal” but regretting that he is now permanently beyond the reach of the law.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) also lamented the fact Sharon was never prosecuted, particularly over his role in the 1982 massacre of hundreds of Palestinians by Israel’s Lebanese Phalangist allies in Beirut’s Sabra and Shatila refugee camps.
“It’s a shame that Sharon has gone to his grave without facing justice for his role in Sabra and Shatila and other abuses,” HRW’s Middle East director Sarah Leah Whitson said in a statement.
“For the thousands of victims of abuses, Sharon’s passing without facing justice magnifies their tragedy.”
Sharon had been in a coma for the past eight years since suffering a massive stroke on January 4, 2006, just months after pulling all troops and settlers out of the Gaza Strip. His condition worsened last week and he died at a hospital near Tel Aviv on Saturday.
The news prompted an outburst of celebration in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, where around a hundred Islamic Jihad members burned pictures of him and handed out sweets, a spokesman said.
For the ruling Islamist Hamas movement, which seized power in Gaza in 2007, just two years after the Israeli pullout, Sharon’s death “is a lesson for all tyrants.”
“Our people are living at a historic moment with the disappearance of this criminal whose hands were covered with the blood of Palestinians and their leaders,” said Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri.
Among those killed by Israel during Sharon’s term in office was Hamas’s wheelchair-bound spiritual leader, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, who was killed in an air strike on Gaza City in 2004.
Similar sentiments were expressed in the West Bank, where a senior official also blasted him as a “criminal” and accused Sharon of being responsible for the mysterious death in the same year of veteran Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.
“Sharon was a criminal, responsible for the assassination of Arafat, and we would have hoped to see him appear before the International Criminal Court as a war criminal,” said Jibril Rajub, a senior official of the ruling Fatah party.
Arafat was Sharon’s nemesis and the burly Israeli leader often expressed regret at not killing him during the 1982 invasion of Beirut.
After the Palestinian leader fell mysteriously ill while under a tight Israeli siege in 2004, dying in France several weeks later, rumors swirled that Israel had poisoned him.
Israel has repeatedly denied the allegations.
“We had hoped he would be brought before the International Criminal Court (ICC) as a war criminal,” said Rajub, who was head of the Palestinian security services when Sharon sent troops to the West Bank in a mass operation to wipe out militant groups in 2002.
“Sharon’s history is blackened by his crimes and written in the blood of the Palestinians,” said Jamal Huweil, a former militant from the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, an armed offshoot of Fatah.
“The curse of our blood will follow him to his grave,” said Huweil who is now a member of the Palestinian parliament, the PLC.
Human Rights Watch said that the failure to bring Sharon to justice had in no way helped the search for peace.
“His passing is another grim reminder that years of virtual impunity for rights abuses have done nothing to bring Israeli-Palestinian peace any closer. For the thousands of victims of abuses,” Whitson said.
As minister of defense, Sharon was forced to resign following the Beirut camp killings of 1982 after an Israeli commission of inquiry found he had been “indirectly responsible” for the massacre.
The commission found that Sharon had disregarded the “serious consideration... that the Phalangists were liable to commit atrocities,” recommending that he be dismissed as defense minister, HRW said.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: Demand for housemaids is so high in the holy month that illegal domestics, working in violation of residence and labor laws, can easily draw a salary of SR3,000 during Ramadan.Due to difficulties in the recruitment process, Saudis are left wi...
JEDDAH: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman has condemned the terror attack on several military checkpoints in Egypt’s North Sinai and expressed his condolences to President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, SPA reported. In a cable to El-Sissi, the k...
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman prays inside the historic Quba Mosque in Madinah. The king was accompanied by Prince Muqrin, Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, head of the Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques and Prince Sultan bin Salman, ch...
JEDDAH: Shop rentals at certain malls have risen by 200 percent, with this cost likely to be passed on to the consumer, the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) said here recently. Muhammad Al-Shehri, chairman of the JCCI’s textiles and gar...
JEDDAH: People with special needs can now visit a park that has dedicated services for them.Jeddah Mayor Hani Abu Ras opened Al-Erada Park in Al-Salama district on Prince Sultan Street on Thursday.“The Kingdom provides special care for people with di...
JEDDAH: Is involvement in social media the right thing or wrong, particularly in the month of Ramadan? There is a difference of opinion with some arguing that it eats into the time that should be spent praying while some backing it for its religious...
RIYADH: The Argentine government has thanked the Kingdom for previously hosting its Umrah pilgrims for free.“They were part of a group invited by then Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah,” said Ambassador Jaime Sergio Cerda on Thursday.“T...
RIYADH: The Ministry of Education’s counseling department has approved the Rifq Program for the physical and psychological well-being of students.Nabil Mohammad Al-Budair, director of counseling for boys, said the program aims to reduce violence in p...
RIYADH: Sales of fireworks at public markets and main roads in Riyadh have increased during Ramadan, despite the Ministry of Commerce and Industry announcing a SR5,000 reward for anyone providing information about warehouses storing these dangerous i...
RIYADH: The General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI) has reported that there were 69,241 work-related accidents in 2014, with expatriates making up 65,509 or 94.6 percent and Saudis 3,732.The accidents were in nine sectors with building and c...
JEDDAH: The Health Ministry’s expenditures over the past five years increased from SR29.29 billion to SR53.73 billion, an increase of about 83 percent.According to a study detailing the ministry’s expenditures between 2008 and 2012 issued by the mini...
RIYADH: Five people from the southern Indian state of Kerala were killed in a road accident at Salwa near Dammam in the Eastern Province early Thursday morning.Manoj Kumar, community welfare attache at the Indian Embassy, told Arab News that the vict...
MAKKAH: The government has deployed eight helicopters over Makkah to track the movement of vehicles and people, and assist in security tasks and medical evacuations.Maj. Gen. Mohammad Al-Harbi, commander of the Interior Ministry’s aviation security d...
JAZAN: A Yemeni woman (A.M.) has once again experienced freedom and a renewed sense of hope in life after reuniting with her family last week on her release from Jazan General Prison, where she spent six years on charges of murder of a citizen in the...
RIYADH: A delegation from the Kingdom recently visited the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to explore that country’s successful experience in tourism, in a bid to further develop the sector. Saudi Arabia has been making all-out efforts to promote tourism,...

Stay Connected

Facebook