UPDATE: Hamas blames fuel shortage for Gaza baby's death
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — A Gaza man said Sunday his 5-month-old baby died two days ago after the generator powering his respirator ran out of fuel, but the report was called into question after it emerged that the timing of the baby's death was misrepresented.
The baby's death — which was confirmed to The Associated Press by a man identified as the father and a Gaza hospital official — would have been the first linked to the territory's energy crisis, and the report appeared to be an attempt by Gaza's Hamas rulers to use it to gain sympathy.
However, the AP later learned that news of Mohammed Helou's death first appeared March 4 in the local Arabic-language newspaper Al-Quds, in an article written by a relative of the bereaved family. . .
The Al-Quds article contained the same details as the one recounted by the Helou family on Sunday, saying Mohammed died from choking on his own phlegm. The story quoted that father as saying their generator ran out of fuel, causing their son's respirator to stop working and ultimately causing the baby to choke to death.
The fuel crisis was relevant in early March as well, but Hamas apparently missed the report in Al-Quds — a publication considered loyal to its rival, Fatah — and Hamas was now trying to recycle the story to capitalize on the family's tragedy.
Confronted by the AP with the newspaper story, the family and Hamas Gaza health official Bassem al-Qadri continued to insist the baby arrived dead at a Gaza City hospital on Friday night.
AP reporter Diaa Hadad who covered the story and the Hamas spin commented on Twitter:
@richards1052 One of the worst days of my professional life, because I am obsessive about checking and cross checking— Diaa Hadid (@diaahadid) March 26, 2012
Gaza baby dies as power cut shuts breathing aid
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A seven-month-old baby in Gaza died on Friday evening after medical equipment he was connected to switched off as a result of a power cut, a Hamas-affiliated TV channel said. Gaza medical spokesman Adham Abu Salmiya confirmed the incident, adding that the infant was born with respiratory problems and doctors had recommended the use of mechanical breathing apparatus to be used at home. The father of the child had turned on the apparatus before going to sleep but during the night a power cut caused it to switch off, resulting in the infant's death, Hamas' Al-Aqsa TV reported.
link to www.maannews.net
IOA serves demolition notice to Palestinian family in Bethlehem
The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) served demolition notice to a Palestinian family in Nahalin village to the west of Bethlehem on Friday.
In the wake of World Water Day, both local and international organisations have issued reports and organised demonstrations to raise attention to the exploitation and demolition of water resources by Israeli settlers to the detriment of Palestinians living in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).
Thabet organization for Palestinian refugees right of return has called for ending the oppression befalling Palestinian refugees in Iraq.
A Palestinian child was wounded in the face by a rubber-coated metal bullet fired by Israeli soldiers who attacked nonviolent protesters against the Wall and Settlements in Nabi Saleh village, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah; a second child was shot and injured in the leg.
link to www.imemc.org
A family of four were kidnapped by settlers on Thursday afternoon while having a picnic close by an outpost near Qadumim. When soldiers arrived at the scene they chased away the relatives of the kidnapped family with tear gas and rubber coated steel bullets alongside settlers throwing stones. It was around 4.30 pm on Thursday that the El Seddi family, who were eating almonds on their families land in the outskirts of Jit, east of Nablus, was kidnapped by a gang of settlers. The settlers approached the family on four wheelers in a group of about ten young men with their shirts wrapped around their heads to conceal their faces.
A Palestinian man in his forties was wounded in his shoulder when Jewish settlers shot at Palestinian villagers in Burka village to the east of Ramallah city on Saturday.
The South African and Portuguese ambassadors to occupied Palestine were reportedly attacked with tear gas grenades by Israeli soldiers during their participation in Kafr Qaddum march.
Soldiers Invade Several Towns Near Hebron
Israeli army invaded on Thursday at night several towns near the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and also invaded several neighborhoods in the city, clashes were reported.
Friday 23 March 2012–The tiny village of Nabi Saleh once again assembled together to hold another of its weekly nonviolent protests against the neighboring illegal Israeli settlement of Halamish, as well as Israel’s occupation at large.
link to www.palestinemonitor.org
The number of Palestinian prisoners going on hunger strike in solidarity with detained hunger strikers Hana’a Shalabi and MP Ahmed Al-Haj had risen to 26 in various prisons.
For many Palestinian children their childhood is lived under a cloak of fear, and the threat of violence and abuse at the hands of an armed force that stalks the streets of their homeland. In the eleven years since 2000, Israeli forces have killed “1,471” (1) children in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, the bulk of which are aged between 13 and 17 years old. The children of Gaza have been and continue to be at greater risk, with almost a thousand murdered in the last twelve years, on the streets of their city, on their way to and from school, whilst playing with friends, shopping for their family or simply relaxing in their homes. Most are shot randomly, indiscriminately, or killed as a result of Israeli air and ground attacks. Around 50 were taken prematurely from their families by unexploded ordnance.
Beit Ommar Weekly Demonstration Against the Occupation
On 30 March thousands people from throughout the world will join Palestinians from the Middle East and the Diaspora in a Global March to Jerusalem (GMJ), in a day of non-violent demonstrations in Palestine and in the surrounding countries aimed to promote Palestinian self-determination.
One year after the 15 March movement’s call for national unity, what has the youth-led mobilization achieved?
On March 21st and 22nd, graduate students at Carleton University overwhelmingly voiced their support for the Palestinian people, by voting for the university’s pension fund to divest from four companies that are complicit in the occupation of Palestine. With the vote taking place through a referendum question, all graduate students had the power to make their voices heard, and in the end, over 72% took a principled stance, by voting for Carleton to stand on the side of justice, equality, and accountability.
US lawmakers release $88.6m (£56m) in development aid for the Palestinians that has been frozen for more than six months.
Hamas said it has documents and minutes of meetings proving the involvement of the Fatah-controlled PA with the Mossad, the US intelligence, and Arab parties in Gaza fuel and power crisis.
What does the spokesman of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu do when his propaganda efforts fail to conceal Israel’s abuses of Palestinians? He uses the blood of Jewish children murdered in the French city of Toulouse last week to try to blot them out. This is low, even for Israeli official propaganda.
B’Tselem’s Executive Director Jessica Montell has admonished the Palestinian human rights groups for speaking out against the Israeli human rights’ group’s participation in J Street’s conference featuring war crimes suspect Ehud Olmert.
On 11 March a French soldier was shot dead in Toulouse by a lone gunman who escaped on a scooter. On 15 March two more soldiers were shot dead were shot in Montauban, 50 Km from Toulouse, apparently by the same gunman. On 19 March, in what appears to have been a third attack by the same killer, one teacher and three pupils were shot dead at the Ozar Hatorah Jewish school in Toulouse. Another pupil was also shot and injured. Later on 19 March, Baroness Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy made a scheduled speech at the opening of a conference organized by UNRWA in cooperation with the European Union. The event was entitled ‘Engaging Youth: Palestinian Refugees in a Changing Middle East’.
A year ago the Israeli-born director of a tiny theatre in a West Bank refugee camp was gunned down. Now young Palestinians are fighting to save the place where they can voice their anger, frustration and dreams in creative ways. On 4 April 2011, Juliano Mer-Khamis turned up unexpectedly at the Freedom theatre in Jenin and went inside to talk with his students and staff. Usually he'd call ahead whenever he planned a return to Jenin, but this time, driving up from Ramallah where he had just premiered a new production of a play by Eugène Ionesco, he gave no advance warning.
Bahraini activists say the regime forces have tortured and sexually assaulted a child as the nation witnesses more crimes committed by the Saudi-backed Al Khalifa regime.
Bahraini protesters battled with riot police near Manama on Friday after the funeral of a mother whose family said she died when security forces fired tear gas into her home twice in the past week. A UN rights body this week expressed concern over the use of excessive force and tear gas by Bahraini security forces. Police moved in with water cannons and armored vehicles to break up hundreds of protesters as they approached a checkpoint near Pearl Roundabout, the hub of pro-democracy protests last year.
link to english.al-akhbar.com
A man and a woman died of asphyxiation caused by tear gas grenades fired by Bahrain's security forces to disperse protests in Shiite villages, the country's main opposition group said on Saturday.
Activists and opposition supporters demonstrate in locations across nation to demand equal rights for Shias.
Nabil Rajab is a Bahraini rights activist, who currently heads Bahrain Center for Human Rights and Gulf Center for Human Rights, and is a legal counsel in the Human Rights Watch.
Iraq detained 22 policemen on Saturday after 19 inmates, including two men on death row, escaped from a prison in the northern city of Kirkuk a day earlier, the local police chief said. "We are investigating 22 policemen who have been detained, to find out about the escape of the terrorists," Kirkuk provincial police chief Jamal Taher Bakr said, adding that local police were hunting for those on the run.
Talib al-Ajami stands near his makeshift house in a garbage and sewage-filled slum in north Baghdad holding a torn, creased letter from insurgents who drove him from his home in 2006.
Saudi police invade hospital to arrest man in "critical" condition
Saudi forces are searching hospitals in Awamiyah to arrest activist Mohammed Saleh Zenadi after he sustained injuries from live rounds fired by the regime forces.
Saudi demonstrators have taken to the streets to condemn the violent crackdown on anti-regime rallies and the shooting of a human rights activist in the oil-rich Eastern Province.
They describe a government onslaught marked by bouts of terror, wanton destruction behind closed doors and strange moments of kindness by soldiers. In a playground of slides and swings, children dug in the sand next to a string of simple dirt mounds that covered the bodies of at least 40 people.
Syrian forces continue assaults on opposition strongholds, as UN envoy heads to Moscow for talks on halting violence.
Syrian president's wife and mother among latest figures to be targeted by European Union assets freeze and travel bans.
Iran on Thursday stressed its opposition to any foreign intervention in Syria, its chief Middle East ally, and called for a "political" solution to the bloody conflict there. "The Islamic Republic of Iran once again reiterates its emphasis on solving the current Syrian situation via political means and refraining from any hasty move and intervention," foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said, according to the website of state television network IRIB.
The clashes between government forces and opposition militias in Baba Amr were a clear tipping point for these players -- much hinged on the outcome of that battle. Today, the retreat of armed groups from the Homs neighborhood means one thing: the strategy of militarizing the conflict from within is no longer a plausible option on which to hang this geopolitical battle. Especially not in an American or French election year, when anything less than regime change in Syria will look like abject failure. . . . Group A is looking for a face-saving exit from the promised escalation in Syria. It consists of the United States, the European Union, and Turkey. Group B, on the other hand, is heavily invested in regime change at any cost and includes Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and some elements of the French, US, British, and Libyan establishments. . . . As Group A moves toward a face-saving exit from the crisis, we are going to witness a re-telling of events in Syria. The Western "mainstream media" and major international NGOs, which have served as little more than propaganda tools for various governments seeking to escalate the Syrian crisis and vilify the Assad government, are suddenly "discovering" dangerous elements in the Syrian opposition. This scene-setting is just as deliberate as the false narratives we have witnessed from Group A since the start of the crisis.
A 32-year-old woman from Iraq who was found severely beaten in her California home with a note left next to her saying "go back to your country" has died.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will allow $1.3bn in military aid to go to Egypt despite controversy over NGOs case.
Parliamentarians meet to name 100-member panel to write constitution, but liberals say Islamists are dominating process.
At least 200 Jordanian demonstrators from a pro-reform youth group held a sit-in in central Amman on Saturday amid heavy security, demanding political change and condemning corruption.
Female unit of Kurd separatist movement PKK wiped out by Turkish army in Bitlis province, interior ministry says.