Gaza (CNN) — Eleven Palestinians were killed and at least four critically injured Friday and early Saturday after a series of Israeli airstrikes targeted suspected militants across Gaza, according to Palestinian medical officials.
Reuters VIDEO: Israeli airstrike kills two in Gaza City
9 Mar (48 sec) – A vehicle bursts into flames after an Israeli airstrike on Gaza in response to rocket fire. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Reuters television footage showed a charred body carried away on a stretcher from the scene. At least two of the victims were inside the vehicle when the explosion occurred, witnesses said.
PRC secretary, ex-prisoner killed in Gaza
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Mar — An Israeli strike targeting a car in western Gaza killed the head of the Popular Resistance Committees and a former prisoner released by Israel four years ago, medical officials said Friday. PRC secretary-general Zuhair Qaisi and Mahmoud Hanani, a Nablus native freed from Israeli custody four years earlier, were killed in the blast in Deir al-Hawa, Gaza health official Adham Abu Salmiya said … An Israeli military statement confirmed the operation and said the men “had been responsible for planning a combined terror attack that was to take place via Sinai in the coming days … Hamas “uses other terror organizations” to carry out attacks and will be held responsible, it said. A statement from the the An-Nasser Salah Ad-Din Brigades, the PRC’s armed wing, promised a “seismic response” to the assassination. [Ynet: A third Palestinian sustained serious wounds in the strike, which targeted a vehicle traveling in western Gaza City, local sources said.]
Medics: 2 people killed in second airstrike
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Mar — Two people were killed as Israel launched a second airstrike on the Gaza Strip, bringing Friday’s death toll to four people, medics said. Obeid al-Ghirbali and Muhammad Harara were named as those killed, medical spokesman Adham Abu Salmiyeh said. Both men were members of the Al-Quds Brigade, the armed wing of Islamic Jihad.
Five killed as the Israeli military bombardment of Gaza continues
IMEMC 9 Mar — A total of five Palestinian men were reported killed on Friday when Israeli jetfighters conducted a number of attacks targeting the Gaza Strip. Sources in Gaza say Israeli tanks are still shelling parts of Gaza city. The latest air raid was on Friday night targeting eastern Gaza Strip left Hazim Quraqee an Islamic Jihad operative, dead.
Islamic Jihad calls for retaliation for airstrikes
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Mar — The Islamic Jihad movement on Friday vowed to respond to Israeli airstrikes which killed 4 people in the Gaza Strip. “The enemy is the one who initiates violence, murder and arrests, therefore the jihad and resistance should be set as it is the only option that will deter the occupation,” Sheikh Nafeth Azzam said in a statement.
DFLP armed wing calls for response to assassination
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Mar — The military wing of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine on Friday demanded a response to the assassination of two Palestinian faction members earlier in the day. The national resistance brigades held Israel fully responsible for the escalation and called on Egypt to intervene, a statement said.
Southern Israel under fire; at least 8 hurt
Ynet 9 Mar — Southern Israel under heavy fire: Four people were wounded after a rocket exploded in southern Israel’s Eshkol region Friday night. One victim was said to be in serious condition; a second man suffered moderate wounds and two other men were lightly wounded. Overall, at least eight people were wounded in rocket-related injuries, Magen David Adom emergency services spokesman said: Three people sustained rocket shrapnel wounds, three others were hurt while running for cover, and two others were involved in a car accident as result of the panic. Earlier, the Iron Dome rocket defense system intercepted at least two Grad rockets fired at the southern communities of Ashdod and Gan Yavne … Throughout in the evening, Palestinians fired at least 40 rockets and mortar shells at Israel’s south.
Palestinian shot dead fighting arrest of released prisoner
HEBRON (WAFA) 8 Mar 20:18 – Israeli soldiers Thursday shot and killed a 16-year-old Palestinian in the town of Yatta, south of Hebron, and injured another during an arrest campaign, according to witnesses and medical sources. They said Zakaria Abu Arram was killed when soldiers opened fire at Palestinians who confronted them to prevent the arrest of Khaled Makhamra, who was released in the October prisoners swap. Witnesses said residents confronted the soldiers and a fist fight broke out between them as they tried to free Makhamra from the soldiers. hen they succeeded in doing that, the soldiers opened fire killing Abu Arram and injuring Muhammad Houshieh, 21, who was shot in the foot and stomach. Soldiers arrested Houshieh and another Palestinian, while they prevented Palestinian ambulances from evacuating Abu Arram’s body
Funeral for Zakariah Jamal Abu Aram
PSP 9 Mar — On Friday, March 9th, 2012, the funeral took place for the martyr Zakariah Jamal Abu Aram, who was killed on Thursday by Israeli soldiers in Yatta (South Hebron hills). The Popular Peaceful Resistance Committee participated in the funeral to offer emotional support to the family and to coordinate activities in solidarity with both the family and the town to protest the crime. Over 30,000 people attended the funeral, chanting slogans calling for the reinforcement of peaceful resistance in Palestine.
PA demands maps of land mines deployed in the West Bank
MEMO 9 Mar — The Palestinian Authority has demanded that the Israeli occupation authorities should hand over a detailed map showing where Israel’s army has laid land mines in the occupied West Bank. The demand comes following the death of the two children in an explosion near Hebron. Zayed Jaradat, 12, and Hamza Jaradat, 13, were killed by some ordnance left behind by the Israel Defence Forces; three other children were injured in the explosion.
PCHR Weekly Report: 2 children killed, 4 civilians wounded by Israeli troops this week [1-7 March]
IMEMC 8 Mar — …On Tuesday afternoon, 06 March 2012, two Palestinian children were killed and three others were wounded when a suspicious object left by the Israeli military exploded in Wad Al-Reem area to the east of Sa’ir village, northeast of Hebron. According to medical reports and observations by a PCHR fieldworker, the two children who were killed sustained serious injuries and burns throughout the body. Their bodies were dismembered as the shrapnel penetrated their heads, chests and faces … Over the last week, Israeli forces conducted 71 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, during which they abducted 40 Palestinians, including 13 children. Israeli soldiers abducted 4 Palestinian civilians at various checkpoints in the West Bank. Full Report
Norwegian olive planters accused of being Nazis
PNN 8 Mar — On Wednesday March 7, A group of 11 Norwegian students and their teacher from Oslo have been insulted and threatened off the land of Palestinian farmer Yassin Da’doua in Beit Iskaria in the southern part of the West Bank where they were helping the farmer to plant olive trees. The group had just started the planting of 200 olive trees when the leader of the radical settler organisation ‘Women in Green’, Nadia Matar, arrived with two other Israeli settlers who started taking photos of the young Norwegians. Nadia Matar raised her voice and told the Norwegian youth that “your grandparents have killed my grandparents in the holocaust and now you are helping the Arabs to steal our land. This is the land for the people of Israel. You are helping the wrong people. You are like the Nazis.” When the army arrived the soldiers told the group to stop planting trees because it is prohibited to plant on State land. The farmer has documents both from the Ottoman period and from the Israeli court that state he is the private owner of the land.
Breaking: 2 international activists assaulted by extreme settlers in Al Khalil
ISM 9 Mar — 2 international activists were assaulted late this morning by extreme Zionist setters in Al Khalil (Hebron). A female activist was assaulted by a male settler, after being punched in the face and having her camera stolen by this male settler. Today’s attack comes following weeks of warning and aggression towards photojournalists and activists with cameras by Israeli military and police, which have stated to internationals that Israeli law forbids the photography of their operations, or rather, their breach of international law and human rights.
Settlers uproot, steal olive trees near Bethlehem
BETHLEHEM (WAFA) 8 Mar – Israeli settlers Thursday uprooted and stole olive trees from a land that belongs to Palestinians in Umm el-Fahem area near Bethlehem, according to witnesses. The land’s owner told WAFA that he was shocked to wake up this morning and find around 230 olive trees uprooted and stolen from his land. He said, “I and other farmers have received a threat from a group of settlers accompanied by Israeli soldiers, after they raided our land and confiscated our equipments as well as 100 Olive trees, which we were planning to plant that day.”
Settlers visit West Bank tomb
SALFIT (Ma‘an) 8 Mar — Settlers entered the West Bank town of Kifl Haris early Wednesday accompanied by the army, witnesses told Ma‘an. Locals said that around 30 military vehicles entered the Salfit village at dawn to provide settlers access to a site revered by Jews as the burial site of Joshua.
Photo: Settlers dress as Arabs for Purim in apartheid Hebron / Haggai Matar
972mag 9 Mar — For just a moment yesterday, one might have thought that the demonstrations worked, or that the hoax newspaper announcing the end of segregation on Shuhada St was not a hoax after all. For a moment, one might have mistakenly assumed that Palestinians are actually walking that main road in Hebron’s city center, with its closed shops and racist graffiti sprayed on them, and the local population locked in their homes and tormented by settlers. But this too was a hoax. A Purim hoax. Once again settlers celebrated Purim by marching on the Jewish-only street merrily disguised as Palestinians. Segregation was kept: fake Arabs – in, real ones – out.
PA steps up security measures at Joseph’s Tomb
Ynet 8 Mar — Nablus holy site equipped with CCTVs, fence in attempt to prevent Breslovers from entering compound illegally — The Palestinian Authority has stepped up its fight against Breslov Hassidim’s attempts to access Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus without permission, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Thursday. Breslovers often try to enter the compound at night, sans authorization or coordination with the IDF and the Palestinian security forces. Such past incidents have caused clashes between the hassidim and Palestinian troops, with one tragic clash ending in the death of Breslover Ben-Yosef Livnat.
Thaer Abed Al Hameed Mahdi, murdered by the Siege
ISM Gaza 8 Mar by Nathan Stuckey — Thaer Abed Al Hameed Mahdi died on Saturday, March 3rd, 2012. He was 23 years old. A rope snapped and he plunged down a shaft to his death. He died instantly. His coworkers Jamal Kamel Mahdi and Raed Jaber Mahdi survived, they are still in the hospital. Jamal is in the European Hospital with two broken legs and a broken arm. Raed is in Shifa Hospital. His back is broken. Three years ago Israel slaughtered almost 1,500 Gazans, and nobody was held accountable for that massacre, and no one even talks of the hundreds or thousands that have been killed and injured in the tunnels since the beginning of the siege. The tunnels that are Gaza’s only link to things like cement, whose import into Gaza is forbidden by Israel. Thaer was just a normal young man; he wanted what all young men in Gaza want, to get married, to have a family. Those are things that he will never have.
18-month-old child killed, her sister injured, after falling into tunnel
IMEMC 9 Mar — Palestinian medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported, Thursday, that an 18-month-old Palestinian child was killed, and her 30-month-old sister was injured, after falling into a siege-busting tunnel, in Rafah, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. Medics and rescue teams rushed to the scene and located two children under the rubble before talking them to Abu Yousef An-Najjar Hospital in the city; Summer Wael Ash-Sha’er died of her wounds, while her sister, Fatima, is currently in a serious condition … More than 200 Palestinians have been killed in similar tunnel incidents, and more than 800 have been injured since 2006. Some of them were killed and injured due to tunnel accidents, and many other died or were injured after the Israeli army bombarded tunnels while they were in them.
The seen and unseen in the No Go Zone
ISM Gaza 8 Mar by Nathan Stuckey – Today, like every Tuesday, we marched into the no go zone north of Beit Hanoun. We gathered by the half destroyed Beit Hanoun Agricultural College and marched north, towards Jerusalem. A Jerusalem that few of the protesters have ever seen, they have never been allowed to go to Jerusalem, it is forbidden to them, just as the land in the no go zone is forbidden to them. Jerusalem and Al Aqsa are unseen. We demonstrated for Al Aqsa and the prisoners. The prisoners too are unseen; Gazans are not allowed to visit their sons and brothers and held in the prisons of the occupation. As we walked down the road toward the no go zone a giant balloon rose over the wall. We are the seen, watched from giant balloons, watched from soldiers in the towers that line the wall, seen from the sights of guns, an Apache helicopter roars in the distance. Local herders tell us that there are tanks behind the wall. For us, the soldiers who look at us through rifle scopes are yet unseen. Later, they will make their appearance. In the sky floats the black flag which flies over the occupation, most of the world refuses to see it, they refuse to recognize it for what it is, but for the people of Palestine it always floats in the sky, like the second moon in a Murakami novel.
Report: Hamas security forces assault 3 reporters in Gaza
Ynet 9 Mar — Palestinian media say Hamas troops attack journalists covering mass wedding ceremony held in Gaza City; authorities condemn act, say assailants will be punished — …The reports identified the three as local Sky News reporter Mohammad al-Mashharawi, BBC reporter Adnan al-Dorosh and Amer Abu Omar, a Gaza-based journalist.
Activism / Solidarity
Palestinian women march in Gaza, West Bank
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 8 Mar — Hundreds of women marched in Gaza and the West Bank on Thursday marking International Women’s Day with a call for national unity and the release of Hana Shalabi. Women marched from the Square of the Unknown Soldier in Gaza City to the UN headquarters before heading to tents set up in solidarity with Shalabi, who has been on hunger strike in an Israeli prison for 22 days. Carrying Palestinian flags and photos of Shalabi, the women demanded the 29-year-old’s freedom and called for an end to the split between Hamas and Fatah. In the West Bank, women rallied at a demonstration in Qalandiya, near Ramallah. Soldiers broke up the rally which was also marking women’s day and in solidarity with Shalabi.
A human chain in Al-Khalil in solidarity with political detainees
AL-KHALIL (PIC) 9 Mar – Families of political detainees in PA jails on Thursday organised a peaceful demonstration and formed a human chain in al-Khalil to protest continued political detentions, summonses to PA security offices and politically motivated sackings. The protest went ahead under the motto “from al-Khalil to Birzeit protesting for freedom”. The protesters raised posters carrying pictures of political captives and slogans that condemn this sort of detention and condemn sackings based on the political sympathies of the employees.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk
VIDEO: Bil‘in weekly demonstration 9 March 2012 / Haitham al-Khatib
Don’t miss the man on the horse
Activists mark International Women’s Day at Shalabi’s home
JENIN (PIC) 9 Mar – Palestinian women activists in the Jenin district on Thursday celebrated International Women’s Day at the home of Hana’ al-Shalabi, who is under administrative detention in an Israeli occupation jail, to express solidarity with her in her fight for freedom as she entered her 22nd day of hunger strike. Palestinian women from the district streamed to visit her home in the village of Burqin to the west of Jenin city in the northern West Bank and expressed support for her and her family in this struggle. The mother of the captive thanked all those who showed support for her daughter and the family and called on those who always talk about women’s rights to pay attention to her daughter’s suffering who is dying slowly in occupation jails. Meanwhile, supporters of Shalabi continue to stream to the protest tent pitched outside her home.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
International Women’s Day marks Hana Shalabi’s 22nd day of hunger strike
8 March 2012 | Palestinian Council of Human Rights Organizations — We, the Palestinian Council of Human Rights Organisations (PCHRO), would like to mark International Women’s Day by expressing our solidarity with administrative detainee Hana Shalabi. Hana is today beginning her 22nd successive day of hunger strike in protest at her internment without charge or trial and her ongoing ill-treatment at the hands of the Israeli authorities.
Hungering for justice on International Women’s Day
IPSC-PNN 8 Mar — To mark International Women’s Day 2012, the Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign wishes to highlight the case of Palestinian political prisoner and hunger striker Hana’ Shalabi … Hana’s hunger strike, like that of her compatriot Khader Adnan before her, is not about herself. It is about justice. Hana’ is hunger striking to end, once and for all, the Israeli policy of interment without trial – euphemistically called ‘Administrative Detention’ – which Amnesty International says Israel uses “to lock up Palestinian activists without charge or trial” … Over the last 43 years, an estimated 10,000 Palestinian women have been imprisoned by the Israeli state. At present, 6 Palestinian women remain incarcerated despite an agreement by Israel that all female political prisoners would be included in the October 2011 prisoner exchange.
Two captives go on hunger strike in solidarity with Shalabi
JENIN, (PIC) 9 Mar — Two Palestinian captives from the village of Burqin declared an open ended hunger strike in solidarity with Hana’ al-Shalabi and in protest at administrative detention under which Palestinian captives serve imprisonment sentences but without any charges brought against them. Fayez al-Shayeb and Nidal Abu Shadouf said in a message on Thursday from their prison that they have started an open ended hunger strike in solidarity with Shalabi who entered her 22 day of hunger strike to protest her detention.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Ofer court decides to solve case of Shalabi amicably
RAMALLAH (PIC) 8 Mar — The military court of Ofer prison asked the Israeli prosecutor and the defense to negotiate to reach a compromise regarding the case of female prisoner Hanaa’ Shalabi, a hunger striker for nearly three weeks. Defense lawyer Jawwad Boulos said the court decided to postpone its deliberation of the objection filed by him and give both sides the chance to solve the matter amicably. This took place during the court hearing which was held Wednesday in the presence of prisoner Shalabi.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Palestinian film breaks ground on women’s issues
RealNews 7 Mar — First film in the Arab world to deal with sexual assault of women and girls released in Israel/Palestine
MADA demands an end to all forms of discrimination against women journalists
MADA-PNN 9 Mar — …Women have made great achievements in all levels of the professional world, and have most certainly made their mark on the Palestinian media, despite the myriad obstacles they have had to face, in the forms of societal repression and the continued challenges of working under the Israeli Occupation. Therefore, MADA would like to express its pride in the high level of professionalism these Palestinian women have achieved in the field of journalism, so many of them had won local, regional and international awards, despite the many challenges the have faced in their work, be it in the press, radio, or television.
Political detention / Court actions
Occupation re-arrest liberated captive Khaled al-Makhamreh
AL-KHALIL (PIC) 9 Mar – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) on Thursday evening arrested Khaled al-Makhamreh, who was liberated from occupation jails a few months back in a prisoner exchange deal between Hamas and the Israeli occupation. Local sources told PIC correspondent that a large number of IOF troops raided the centre of Yatta town and encircled the home of Makhamreh causing protests by local residents who clashed with the invading troops which resulted in the death of the young boy Jamal Abu Arram and the wounding of a number of others, including an occupation soldier.
link to www.palestine-info.co.uk/
Cameraman sentenced to 18 months, 1,300 USD
IMEMC 9 Mar — The Ofer Israeli Military Court sentenced on Thursday a Palestinian cameraman from Bil‘in village near the central West Bank city of Ramallah to eighteen months imprisonment and 1300 USD fine. The Friends of Freedom and Justice Committee in Bil‘in, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah, reported that cameraman Hamza Suleiman Burnat, 19, was kidnapped by the army four months ago when he was photographing a nonviolent protest against the Wall and Settlements in Nabi Saleh village. Burnat is in his final year at school as, two years ago, while he was in his graduation year, the army kidnapped him and imprisoned him for nine months. He is a volunteer cameraman for the Media Center of the Friends of Freedom and Justice Committee.
19 new witnesses in case against Information Center director Jawad Siyam
Silwan, Jerusalem (SILWANIC) 9 Mar – The Israeli state prosecution in the three ongoing cases against Wadi Hilweh Information Center director Jawad Siyam has called 19 witnesses to testify against him. Three sessions commenced today in the Jerusalem Magistrates Court at 10am and will continue for three days, to be followed by a hearing with more witnesses. The witnesses will include ELAD settler group employees, police interrogators, and a Palestinian man involved in land acquisition for settler groups, who has constructed a claim of assault against Siyam.
Israeli forces detain 3 overnight
TULKAREM (Ma‘an) 8 Mar — Israeli forces detained three people overnight Wednesday, an Israeli army spokesman said. One person was detained in Tulkarem, one south of Bethlehem and one in Tubas.
Student ‘detained at flying checkpoint’
JENIN (Ma‘an) 7 Mar — Israeli forces on Wednesday detained a Palestinian university student at a flying checkpoint near Jenin, locals said. Arafat Muhammad, 21, from Arraba village, was detained from a car at the checkpoint, witnesses told Ma‘an. He is a student at An-Najah University in Nablus.
America magazine: Out of Palestine
27 Feb — Recently I asked Dominique Najjar, a Palestinian Christian who lives with his wife and children in Minneapolis, why so many Palestinians are leaving Palestine. He told me the story of how he and two of his three brothers, all aspiring professionals, immigrated to the United States from East Jerusalem out of “economic necessity,” starting in the early 1970s. “My parents needed support,” he said, explaining that economic advancement was impossible under Israeli control … But there is more to Mr. Najjar’s story. He and one of his brothers did not intend to emigrate permanently from their homeland. After they had moved to the United States, however, Israel revoked their Jerusalem residency status. Now they are given 90-day tourist visas when they return to their hometown, where their 89-year-old mother lives alone. Since none of her seven adult children enjoys residency status in Jerusalem any longer, none can do more than visit her. She receives daily “compassion and attention” from her Muslim neighbors next door.
Opinion / Interviews / Books / etc.
Amid Iran war of words, Palestinians are forgotten (Reuters)
RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) 9 Mar by Noah Browning — A monumental wooden chair erected in Ramallah to symbolize the Palestinians’ sought-after United Nations seat collapsed this week after months of wind and rain. Bulldozers quietly took away the shattered remains by night. Its collapse and stealthy removal could well serve as an emblem of Palestinian hopes for statehood. For the first time in years, meetings this week between U.S. and Israeli leaders were largely silent on the long-stalled peace process. Debate between Israel and Washington over a military strike on Iran knocked Israel-Palestinian peace talks to the bottom of Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu’s agenda.
UN expert: ‘State religions’ should never be used for national identity politics
OHCHR-PNN 7 Mar — …”It seems difficult, if not impossible, to conceive of an official ‘State religion’ that in practice does not have adverse effects on religious minorities, thus discriminating against their members,” said Mr. Bielefeldt presenting his report* on freedom of religion or belief and ‘recognition’ issues, at the current session of the UN Human Rights Council.
Netanyahu, our savior the fearmonger / Gideon Levy
Haaretz 8 Mar — … Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who quacked his fearmongering speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee convention on Tuesday, proved yet again that Israel has never had a statesman quite like him – a statesman who has built his career on being an alarmist, and who boasts an impressive record of incessant, decades-long fearmongering. “Mr. Terror” has over the years become “Mr. Iran,”
Far more Christian than Muslim migrants worldwide
PARIS (Reuters) 8 Mar — Christians far outnumber Muslims as migrants around the world, including in the European Union where debates about immigration usually focus on new Muslim arrivals, according to a new study issued Thursday. Of the world’s 214 million people who have moved from their home country to live in another, about 106 million (49 percent) are Christians while around 60 million (27 percent) are Muslims, the study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life said. Only 3.6 million Jews around the world have moved across international borders, the study said, but that is 25 percent of the world’s Jewish population, by far the highest proportion on the move of any faith group.
Video: Nada Bakri, widow of Anthony Shadid, on her husband’s life and posthumous memoir House of Stone
Democracy Now 8 Mar — “He felt like [the Arab Spring] is a dream come true for every journalist covering the Middle East,” Bakri says. “After covering it for so many years—oppression and dictatorships and wars and conflicts and violence—finally something is changing, and something positive and optimistic.” Bakri is a Lebanese-born journalist who also writes for the New York Times. [includes rush transcript]
Read an excerpt from Anthony Shadid’s new memoir House of Stone
Democracy Now 7 Mar — Shadid died of an apparent asthma attack while covering the conflict in Syria. His newly published memoir, “House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East,” documents his return to a small town in Lebanon to renovate his family’s ancestral home, which was built by his great-grandfather and damaged by an Israeli rocket in 2006. While repairing the house, Shadid discovers a lost Middle East.