Poster of Khader Adnan, in the rain in Bil’in last Friday
and other news from Today in Palestine:
Deal reached to end Khader Adnan’s detention by 17 April; 66 day hunger strike ends
EI 21 Feb — Lawyers for Khader Adnan have reached a deal with Israel for Adnan to be released on 17 April, Addameer announced today via Twitter. Khader Adnan has agreed to end his hunger strike. Addameer said the deal appears to meet minimum conditions Adnan had previously communicated to lawyers … According to the deal, Adnan will be released on 17 April – three weeks before the original 8 May expiry of his current administrative detention order. But under the deal his admistrative detention order would not be renewed.
Despite the announcement of a deal limiting Khader Adnan’s detention, Addameer reiterates its urgent concern for his health
21 Feb — Addameer maintains that the fact that Israeli officials negotiated the duration of his detention, in addition to agreeing to an early release, reveals that there were no grounds for his administrative detention in the first place. His administrative detention order, as is the case with all other administrative detainees, is based on the alleged threat he poses to the “security of the State of Israel.” However, if Israeli officials agree that he will not be a threat on 17 April, as clear from today’s deal, he surely does not pose any threat today and his case provides further proof of Israel’s policy of arbitrary detention. Addameer reiterates its call for his immediate and unconditional release and the release of the 308 other administrative detainees.
Addameer’s main concern remains Khader’s health, in critical condition after over two months of hunger strike. Whether or not Khader continues his hunger strike, he must receive proper arrangements for observing his health condition, which will likely now have irreversible consequences. If he does decide to end his hunger strike, the potential complications from such a protracted hunger strike will require urgent and trusted care, which can only be provided if he is released.
Video: Palestinian prisoner Khader Adnan to be released from Israeli jail after 66-day hunger strike
Democracy Now 21 Feb — Israel’s Supreme Court has ordered the release of Khader Adnan, a Palestinian prisoner who has been on a hunger strike for 66 days. He is being held in Israel without charge or trial. Under the deal, Adnan will be released on April 17. Doctors previously said Adnan was at immediate risk of death. We speak to three guests about his case: his sister, Maali Mousa; Bill Van Esveld, researcher at Human Rights Watch; and Danny Morrison, a friend of the late Irish republican activist Bobby Sands, who died on his 66th day of a hunger strike in 1981.
Group calls on Israel to stop administrative detentions
TEL AVIV (WAFA) 21 Feb — Physicians for Human Rights Israel Tuesday called on the government of Israel to stop the practice of administrative detention against Palestinians. “Khader Adnan is only one of 309 administrative detainees currently held in Israeli prisons, with no charges presented against them and with no ability to defend themselves in court,” it said in a statement. “Adnan’s courageous hunger strike raised national and international awareness of the issue of administrative detentions, and we applaud his achievement,” it said.
Bethlehem demonstration stopped at checkpoint
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 21 Feb — Palestinian demonstrators marched toward a Bethlehem checkpoint on Tuesday, before being stopped by Palestinian security forces. Dozens of university students carrying Palestinian flags set off from Bethlehem University towards the Israeli military checkpoint next to Rachel’s Tomb in the west of the city, protesting the situation of hunger-striking prisoner Khader Adnan. Some demonstrators threw stones at an Israeli military tower, but they were pushed back by Palestinian security forces, witnesses said.
Demonstration in Hebron shows solidarity with Khader Adnan
PSP 21 Feb — On Monday, February 20th, 2012, Palestinian demonstrators in the city of Hebron gathered outside of Red Cross offices to express their solidarity with Khader Adnan … Today’s demonstration in Hebron was joined the Beit Ommar Popular Committee, the Palestine Solidarity Project, and the Palestinian Prisoners’ Association. Families of several of the more than 5,000 Palestinian political prisoners took part in the demonstration as well.
Ramallah for Khadr Adnan – a protest of solidarity and hope
Stop the Wall 21 Feb — This morning over a thousand people gathered in front of the Red Cross building in Ramallah/Al Bireh to join the protest organized by the Palestinian youth movements and political parties in solidarity with Khadr Adnan and all Palestinian political prisoners. The protest was organized in conjunction with a general strike proclaimed from noon time to 2 pm. The march started from the Red Cross building and went to al-Manara Square, the center of Ramallah. While marching, the youth activists ensured that the few remaining open shops would close as well. All across the center of Ramallah stores and markets were shut down and people stopped their activities to participate in the protest.
Soldiers use force to disperse protest
RAMALLAH (WAFA) 21 Feb – Several Palestinians were injured Tuesday when Israeli soldiers used force to disperse a protest outside Ofer military camp near Ramallah held in solidarity with Khader Adnan, the prisoner who has been on hunger strike for 66 straight days, said witnesses. Confrontations broke out when Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters and rubber-coated metal bullets at the demonstrators, injuring 10 people who were hit by rubber bullets. Many others suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Land, property theft & destruction / Apartheid / Restriction of movement / Attacks on non-Jewish religious sites
Israeli forces deliver demolition warnings near Jenin
JENIN (Ma‘an) 21 Feb – Israeli forces delivered evacuation and demolition orders Tuesday morning to nine Palestinian residents in the northern West Bank village of Barta‘a al-Sharqiya. Village council member Tawfiq Qabaha told Ma‘an that officers of the Israeli planning department, escorted by military patrols, stormed the village early Tuesday and handed out the orders. The orders demand evacuation of tin sheds used as barns for livestock and poultry stating that they were built without permits. The orders included supportive walls which were also allegedly built without permits.
Israel demolishes West Bank villages as Jewish outposts remain untouched / Akiva Eldar
Haaretz 21 Feb — Israel’s eagerness to demolish renewable energy installations in a West Bank village is seen as an ugly riposte to the European Union … Around 1,500 people in 16 communities, that have been in the area since the 19th century, now benefit from energy produced by these installations, which provide lighting and electricity to their modest dairy product business. A few weeks ago, the Israeli administration – the one that arranges to run high-tension lines over their heads to supply illegal outposts – decided to issue work stoppage orders to five installations. The demolition orders expected to follow will darken the homes of 500 people. Children will revert to straining their eyes as they do their homework in the light of oil lamps, and the women will go back to churning butter and cheeses with blistered hands. The new facilities were built mainly with money from the German taxpayer. The German government contributed 400,000 euros to the project, in addition to more modest sums from other organizations. During a visit to Israel three weeks ago, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle asked the prime minister, defense minister and foreign minister to work to cancel the orders. Everyone promised to look into the matter. The response arrived a week later in the form of a new work stoppage order for another installation.
Jewish female extremists declare intent to defile Aqsa Mosque this morning
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (PIC) 21 Feb — A large number of Palestinian women from the holy city and the 1948 occupied lands intend to march towards the Aqsa Mosque to counter Jewish female groups who declared their intent to desecrate the Mosque on Tuesday morning and on a regular basis. Many Palestinian women are expected to flock into the Aqsa Mosque this morning to defend it in response to an urgent appeal made by noted religious and national Jerusalemite women. This Palestinian female move came after a group of extremist Jewish women naming itself as women for the temple announced their intention to storm the Aqsa Mosque to perform Talmudic rituals and dances.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Israeli police restrict entry of worshipers into Al-Aqsa Mosque
JERUSALEM (WAFA) 21 Feb – Israeli police Tuesday imposed restrictions on entry of Palestinians under 40 years of age, including women, into the Old City of Jerusalem and al-Aqsa Mosque, according to witnesses. They said Israeli police set up barricades at Old City gates, checking identity papers of people trying to enter the walled city and prevented the younger ones from entering. Police stationed at the gates to Al-Aqsa Mosque, one of Islam’s holiest sites, also prevented Muslim worshippers planning to perform prayers in the Mosque from entering it. The Israeli measures came following calls by Palestinians to gather in the Mosque area to foil plans by Jewish extremists who intend to visit the compound of al-Aqsa Mosque to perform religious rituals
Jewish settlers profane Baptist church of W. J’lem, insult Prophet Jesus
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (PIC) 21 Feb — Extremist Jewish settlers, members of the price tag gang, desecrated the Baptist church in the western part of occupied Jerusalem and wrote crude remarks and profanities about Prophet Jesus and his mother Mary. The settlers sprayed graffiti remarks in Hebrew language on the exterior walls of the church and some of them read, “We will crucify you” and “Death to Christianity.”
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Hamas condemns Israel’s desecration of Islamic, Christian shrines
GAZA (PIC) 21 Feb — Hamas has strongly condemned the Jewish fanatics’ desecration of Islamic and Christian holy shrines in occupied Jerusalem under the protection of Israeli occupation forces. The movement’s statement on Monday was commenting on the Jewish settlers storming of the holy Aqsa mosque and writing of insulting statements about Christianity on the walls of the Baptist Church west of occupied Jerusalem.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
In Pictures: Palestinians waiting to enter Israel at Eyal checkpoint
Haaretz 21 Feb — A checkpoint on the Green Line on a cold and rainy Saturday morning.
Egypt to boost Gaza power supply to ease crisis
CAIRO (Reuters) 21 Feb — Egypt has agreed to let more fuel into Gaza and increase the amount of electricity it supplies to the coastal enclave, Palestinian and Egyptian officials said on Tuesday. The Egyptian government said the amount of electricity supplied to Gaza would be increased to 22 megawatts from an existing 17 megawatts already supplied for free. In addition, emergency diesel would also be supplied. “The increase comes in the framework of a quick attempt to relieve the suffering of the Palestinian people,” Hassan Younes, the Egyptian minister responsible for electricity and power, said in a statement … Omar Katana, head of the PA Energy Authority, told Reuters Egypt was ready to provide the Gaza Strip with emergency diesel in the coming days and would also increase the amount of electricity it supplied to the territory. On Monday, 300,000 liters of fuel arrived in Gaza through the tunnels, which was expected to provide an additional two hours of daily power. Katana said a plan struck with Egypt will increase electricity flows to 62 megawatts within two to four months. In future, regular diesel supplies would be trucked into Gaza via the Israeli border crossing at Kerem Shalom, the energy authority chief said. “Egypt wants to legalize the matter and end the smuggling of fuel because it comes at the expense of the Egyptian people,” he told Reuters
Israeli army opens fire at protest near Gaza border
JERUSALEM (WAFA) 21 Feb – Israeli army units Tuesday opened fire at a non-violent demonstration against the buffer zone between Israel and the Gaza Strip near Beit Hanoun, north of Gaza, according to participants. No injuries were reported … he buffer zone encompasses 30% of Gaza’s agricultural land and around 27,000 dunums, according to the Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights
Power outages, fear of Israeli attack in Gaza affects children’s psychological state
Al Arabiya 21 Feb — There are more than one million students in the Palestinian territories, around 710,000 in the West Bank and more than 471,000 in the Gaza Strip. Many schools in Gaza were destroyed in the last aggression Israel, which claimed the lives of dozens of children and students … According to the students, blackouts have a negative impact on their studying and subject them and their families to a great deal of danger owing to the continuous use of candles and electric generators at home … According to psychologist Mohannad Abdul Rahman, power outages and Israeli threats have a negative impact on children in particular. “Children are the most affected by the environment in which they live,” he said.
Israeli Apartheid Week and other solidarity actions
Video: Israel student society attacks peaceful Palestinian protest with water bombs at LSE / Asa Winstanley
EI 20 Feb — A student street theatre put on by the Palestine Society at the London School of Economics was attacked by members of the Israel Society today. Part of Israeli Apartheid Week, the peaceful mock checkpoint was attacked with water bombs, knocking down some of the set. LSE Palestine Society member Jen Izaakson said they shouted “Hamas” and “death to Israel” as they threw the water bombs. With breathtaking hypocrisy, the Israel Society later put out a statement demanding a “full apology” and “dialogue”, claiming the street theatre had been “provocative”.
Envoys to fight Israel Apartheid Week on campus
JPost 19 Feb — The Public Diplomacy Ministry plans to send 100 Israelis from different sectors in society abroad to represent and defend the state during Israel Apartheid Week. The “Faces of Israel” mission, which leaves next weekend, includes settlers, Arabs, artists, experts in national security, gay people, and immigrants from Ethiopia. Actor Aki Avni will also join the group. The participants in the project have undergone several weeks of training in the Public Diplomacy Ministry, and will visit dozens of college campuses to battle the “apartheid” label in New York, Boston, Washington, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Toronto, Montreal, Dublin, London, Madrid, Johannesburg and Cape Town.
Video: Chicago solidarity activists attempt to deliver giant Valentine heart petition to ObamaPalestinian EI 21 Feb by Maureen – Last Tuesday, on the occasion of Valentine’s Day, myself and a handful of other Palestine solidarity activists in Chicago attempted to deliver a giant heart-shaped petition to Obama’s campaign headquarters in Chicago which called for an end to US aid to Israel. Our valentine petition to the president was refused, as the above video shows (though our attempt was observed by Obama’s campaign staff). We felt the love however in the streets of downtown Chicago, where we passed out hundreds of valentine hearts that we cut out of colorful construction paper. Information about Israel’s apartheid policies was pasted on each heart. “Have a heart! Don’t let Israeli apartheid keep us apart,” each valentine read, with varying messages that included statistics about political prisoners; Israel’s racist laws forbidding the spouses of Palestinian citizens from gaining residency rights; and Israel’s matrix of movement restrictions. Lots of passersby signed our giant heart petition and the prop was a great way to engage with people and talk to them about why we should call on the US government to sanction Israel.
Armed men fire at Israeli watchtower
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) — Armed men opened fire at an Israeli guard tower south of Ramallah on Monday night, Palestinian security sources told Ma‘an. Soldiers reportedly returned fire against the armed men. No injuries were reported.
On 1st anniversary in Israeli prison, Abusisi charges Mossad spirited him from Ukraine in coffin
Dirar Abusisi has just completed his first anniversary as an Israeli prisoner of conscience incarcerated for “crimes” he hasn’t committed and jailed without trial. He’s been offered deals by the State involving confession to charges without foundation, which would involve accepting as long as a nine-year jail sentence (remember the fate of Ameer Makhoul and Anat Kamm?). In prison, he’s suffered kidney stones, high blood pressure, heart problems and lost 60 pounds. Israel has refused him an operation to relieve the pain suffered from the kidney stones. A fellow Palestinian prisoner who was housed next door to Abusisi and with whom he shared his ordeal, told his story (Arabic) to the Palestinian newspaper, Al Shehab. The prisoner was released as part of the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange. Here is an excerpt translated from the story: ” [After being detained in the Ukrainian railroad car] Dirar found himself in Kiev, bound and blindfolded. He was taken out of the car and into a villa, where he was surprised to see seven officers who did not have Ukrainian features. One of them spoke to him in Arabic, and said, “Do you know who we are? We are Israeli intelligence.” … Abu Sissi was left alone in the torture chamber and afterward, a man came who bound and blindfolded him again, put him in a coffin and nailed it shut, speaking about how he was transferred to the airport in Kiev…
Israel re-arrests recently released prisoners
QALQILYA (WAFA) 21 Feb – The Israeli military authorities Tuesday arrested two Palestinian ex-detainees from the Qalqilya area, in the north of the West Bank, who were released in December in the Gilad Shalit prisoners swap, according to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club (PPC). Israeli soldiers arrested Yousef Ishtewi from his house in the city of Qalqilya after raiding and ransacking it, said head of the PPC in Qalqilya Lafy Nasorah … Soldiers also raided Jayyous, a village east of Qalqilya, and arrested ex-detainee Mahmoud Salim.
IOF kidnap nine young men from W. Bank, one from O. Jerusalem
RAMALLAH (PIC) 21 Feb — The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) kidnapped at dawn Tuesday 10 Palestinian young men during raids on their homes in different West Bank areas. According to local sources, a young man called Jamil Muheisen was kidnapped from his home in Al-Issawiya neighborhood in occupied Jerusalem and other young men were handed summonses for interrogation from the Israeli intelligence apparatus. Nine other young men were also taken prisoners to an unknown destination after raiding their homes in Tubas, Jenin and Al-Khalil cities …
In an earlier incident, a large number of Israeli troops invaded Halhoul town north of Al-Khalil city on Monday afternoon and clashed with Palestinian young who hurled stones at their armored vehicles. The invading troops raided a number of homes in Addarwa and Al-Hawawer areas of Halhoul town and attacked angry young men with tear gas grenades, eyewitnesses reported. Coordinator of Halhoul popular committee Mohamed Awad said these troops detained him as he was taking picture of Israeli soldiers attacking the young men, confiscated his camera for a few hours and deleted all the photos.
In a separate incident, a group of Israeli soldiers sabotaged on Monday afternoon without any reason a car used by teachers of Janba school to reach their workplace to the east of Yatta town, the school principal told Quds Press.l
ink to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Police arrest Jerusalem resident from hospital
JERUSALEM (WAFA) 21 Feb – Israeli police Tuesday arrested a Palestinian resident of East Jerusalem from his hospital bed, according to family members. They said Israeli police raided the house of Munther Obaid in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya, looking for his son, Kathem, who was getting treatment in nearby Hadassah Hospital.
DCI files complaint against abuse and maltreatment of detained children
PNN (20 Feb) — Defense for Children International (DCI) in Palestine submitted a complaint to the legal supervisor of the Israeli government and the Israeli prisons’ administration on behalf of a 16 year old child, Rashid C, from Hares village. DCI demanded an immediate investigation into the physical and psychological abuse and maltreatment of Rashid by the Israeli intelligence services during his arrest and interrogation at Al-Jalama Interrogation and Detention Center in November 2011.
Witnesses: Soldiers detain teenager from Jenin village
JENIN (Ma‘an) 21 Feb — Israeli forces raided the Jenin village of Ya‘bad overnight Monday and detained a 16-year-old boy, witnesses told Ma‘an. Locals said soldiers raided the village and detained Asem Abu Shamlah as he was standing outside his home. Israeli forces accused him of stone-throwing. The arrest triggered clashes in the village, with youths throwing stones at soldiers, who responded with tear gas.
Palestinian officials condemn Israeli leaks of Amman talks
JERICHO (WAFA) 21 Feb – PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erekat Tuesday condemned leaks by Israeli officials of the Palestinian-Israeli exploratory talks recently held in Jordan. He said in a statement that he wrote members of the Quartet, which is composed of the United States, European Union, United Nations and Russia, condemning the Israeli leaks that violate the pledge of confidentiality regarding the talks. He described the leaks as “half-truths” released as a public relations stunt.
Erekat warns against Israeli strike on Gaza
RAMALLAH 2012 (WAFA) 21 Feb — PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erekat Tuesday warned against an Israeli military strike on the Gaza Strip, holding the Israeli government fully responsible for any such attack. He told a local radio station that the Palestinian Authority takes these threats seriously because they have been voiced by high ranking political and security officials. Erekat said that the PA is determined to continue with internal reconciliation despite of Israel’s efforts to foil it.
Hamas: Committed to Doha deal, but needs amendment
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 21 Feb — Senior Hamas leader Khalil al-Hayyah said Monday that the Islamist movement is committed to the Doha agreement, but still disputes President Abbas’ dual role of prime minister. “Make it lawful, as Abbas can’t be president and prime minister according to the law,” al-Hayyah told Ma‘an. The senior Hamas figure also quashed rumors that a meeting had been convened to address internal disputes.
Abbas meets EU’s Ashton
AMMAN (WAFA) 21 Feb – President Mahmoud Abbas met Tuesday with European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton in the Jordanian capital Amman. They discussed the latest in the peace process, which is stalled because of Israeli intransigence, and Palestinian reconciliation efforts.
Report: Dozens protest Israeli president visit to Nazareth
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma‘an) 20 Feb — Dozens of people gathered in Nazareth on Monday to protest a visit by Israeli President Shimon Peres, Israeli media reported. The protesters waved Palestinian flags and held banners denouncing the president’s visit to the majority Palestinian city in northern Israel, Israeli news site Ynet reported … Israel’s Palestinian community of 1.6 million, which represents about 20 percent of the population, is descended from the 160, 000 Palestinians who remained after the war to establish Israel.
Raheb will get German prize despite growing opposition, organizers say
BERLIN (JTA) 21 Feb — Jewish groups are ramping up pressure to have a prestigious German prize withdrawn from a Palestinian pastor who is accused of making anti-Semitic statements. The Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb of the Evangelical Lutheran Christmas Church in Bethlehem is one of four recipients of the German Media Prize to be presented Friday … In a speech to the 2010 Christ at the Checkpoint conference in Bethlehem, Raheb discounted Jewish roots in Israel and said that Palestinian Arabs share DNA with King David and Jesus, but that Netanyahu does not. The speech was removed Tuesday from the conference’s website.