Violence / Detentions — West Bank, Jerusalem
3 more Palestinian teens dead after alleged stabbing incidents
Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian teenager on Monday afternoon after he allegedly attempted to stab an Israeli soldier at the Huwwara checkpoint south of Nablus, Israel’s army said. An Israeli army spokesperson said that as the Palestinian approached the checkpoint, he “drew a knife and attempted to attack a soldier.” She said that the soldier “responded to the immediate danger” and opened fire on the Palestinian, “resulting in his death.” The Palestinian Ministry of Health identified the alleged attacker to Ma‘an News Agency as Alaa Khalil Sabah Hashah, 16. A Palestinian woman identified as Samah Abd al-Mumen Ahmad from ‘Ammuriya village was shot in the head in the crossfire, witnesses said. A bus driver, Adham al-Sharfa, stated: “I saw what happened with my own eyes as Israeli soldiers opened fire at a youth for attempting to stab an Israeli soldier and then several Israeli soldiers arrived and shot the youth more than 10 times and he fell to the ground.” Palestinian security sources said Samah was shot in the head while sitting inside her car near where the incident occurred. Her injuries were reported as critical. No Israelis were reported injured during the incident . . .
Also on Monday, Palestinian man was shot dead after stabbing and killing an Israeli settler on Route 443 west of Ramallah, Israel’s army said. An Israeli army spokesperson said that a “Palestinian murdered an Israeli and wounded another in a stabbing attack” with the injured victim evacuated for treatment. Israeli forces responded on site to the incident and shot dead the Palestinian attacker, the spokesperson added. The Palestinian Ministry of Health identified the suspect as Ahmad Jamal Taha, 16, from the Qutna village near Ramallah. The attack took place at a gas station along Route 443 west of Ramallah, with the Magen David Adom ambulance service treating the wounded at the scene.
The latest incident brings the total death toll on Monday to three Palestinians and one Israeli after a 16-year-old Palestinian girl was shot dead in Jerusalem earlier in the day, after allegedly carrying out a stabbing attack near the Mahane Yehuda market. Israeli media initially reported that two Israelis were wounded in the alleged attack, although a spokesperson for Hadassah hospital later confirmed that one of those injured was a 70-year-old Palestinian resident of Bethlehem, who had a light stabbing wound in his back. The other was a 27-year-old Israeli security guard who was shot in the hand by friendly fire. An Israeli security guard, who had been driving near the Mahane Yehuda market on Jaffa Street, got out of his car when he saw the two girls and quickly shot dead 16-year-old Hadeel Wajih Awwad [from Qalandiya R.C.] and severely wounded her cousin, 14-year-old Norhan Awwad. Video footage showed both girls running at the security officer, apparently waving scissors, before the security guard and another Israeli managed to knock the girls to the ground. Once on the ground, the security guard ran forward and shot each of them several times.
Mapping the dead in latest Israeli-Palestinian violence
Al Jazeera 24 Nov by Basma Atassi — Below is an interactive of those killed on both sides since the beginning of October: [photos, notes on how each died]
Why won’t Israel allow autopsy on youth killed by police?
EI 24 Nov by Alia Al Ghussain — A refusal by the Israeli police to allow an autopsy on a young Palestinian killed by its officers indicates a cover-up. On 17 October, Mutaz Uweisat was killed by the police in Armon Hanatziv, an Israeli settlement in occupied East Jerusalem. Israeli police have alleged that the 16-year-old boy tried to stab a border guard. Palestinian human rights groups are calling for an investigation of the officer implicated in the killing. In a request submitted earlier this month, the two groups Adalah and Addameer also urged that an autopsy be carried out in the presence of a medical officer approved by the Uweisat family. Five days after submitting the request, Adalah issued a statement saying that the police had refused to perform an autopsy and that an Israeli court in Jerusalem had refused to order one. The police had decided to close its examinations of the incident, the group reported. The Israeli authorities have still not handed over Mutaz’s body to his family. They have similarly refused to return, or delayed returning, the bodies of many other Palestinians killed by Israeli forces. Israel’s refusal to allow an investigation into the incident makes its account impossible to verify. A number of other recent allegations made by the Israeli authorities against young Palestinians shot dead by its forces have turned out to be inaccurate.
– Questionable incidents – Amjad Iraqi, an Adalah campaigner, said that the authorities are displaying a similar attitude in this case as they did after Fadi Alloun was shot dead by Israeli police near the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City last month. While the police also accused Alloun of trying to stab Israelis, video evidence proves that he was unarmed at the time he was shot. “There is little interest on their part to conduct proper investigations into these very questionable incidents,” Iraqi said. “And they are refusing requests for independent autopsies to ensure that the authorities are giving truthful information about the victims.”
Why did they have to kill her?
QALANDIYA, Palestine (The National) 25 Nov by Kate Shuttleworth // In a pale-walled room two single beds are neatly draped in bright pink bedspreads covered with the image of Fulla — the Arab world’s Barbie doll. Teddy bears and a pink play pushchair sit in one corner. In a neatly arranged cupboard sits a printout of a near straight-A school report card, alongside a diary filled with teenage entries. The bedroom belongs to 14-year-old Palestinian, Hadeel Wajih Awwad — the same room where she would often sleep next to her cousin, 16-year-old Norhan Awwad. The girls were more like sisters. The innocence of the room seems a long way from the surveillance video footage showing the cousins threatening passers-by with a pair of scissors in central Jerusalem. What followed was a shocking depiction of the hopelessness and anger of young Palestinians born into an Israeli occupation and the brutality of a security force long accused of using excessive violence. The girls run towards a man in the street near the busy Mehane Yehuda marketplace as he points a gun at them. A police officer rushes in as a bystander flattens Norhan with a chair leaving her still on the ground. The policeman then shoots Hadeel several times, killing her, before firing two shots into Norhan’s chest. Moments earlier, one of the girls had lightly stabbed a Palestinian man, in his 70s, mistaking him for an Israeli. He was treated for a light arm injury and released from hospital on Monday night. Norhan was treated at the scene and taken to hospital in Jerusalem where she remains. Her family have not been updated on her condition. [seems as if the ages of the cousins are reversed here]
Soldiers injure three Palestinians near Ramallah
IMEMC 24 Nov — Israeli soldiers shot and injured, on Monday evening, three Palestinians with live fire, after the army invaded the al-Mogheer village, east of the central West Bank city of Ramallah. Local sources said clashes took place between the invading soldiers, who fired live rounds, rubber-coated steel bullets and gas bombs, and Palestinian youngsters, who hurled stones on the military vehicles. Three Palestinians were shot with live rounds, while scores of residents suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation, especially after the soldiers fired gas bombs at several homes.
In related news, several Palestinians suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation in Zabbouba village, west of the northern West Bank city of Jenin, after the soldiers invaded it. Clashes took place in the village, and the soldiers fired several gas bombs and rubber-coated steel bullets. Local medics provided the wounded Palestinians with the needed medical treatment.
Israeli army injures dozens of students on Tulkarem University campus
TULKAREM (WAFA) 24 Nov – Israeli army forces Tuesday shot ten Palestinians using live rounds after a new round of clashes broke out on the campus of the Palestine Technical University, Kadoorie, to the west of Tulkarem. The Ambulance and Emergency Center at the Palestinian Red Crescent told WAFA in a phone call that ambulance crews rushed the injured to a nearby hospital and treated another eight injured by rubber bullets alongside other tear gas suffocation cases on the scene. The Public Relations department in the Palestine Technical University said Israeli army forces fired live and rubber ammunition at the students and marched towards the library building, but withdrew after facing the students. A number of journalists and photographers who covered the clashes said Israeli soldiers stood behind to use them as human shields. However, no casualties were reported.
Four Palestinians injured in renewed clashes in Tulkarem University
TULKAREM (WAFA) 23 Nov – Four Palestinians Monday afternoon were shot and injured by Israeli forces in renewed clashes in a university to the west of the northern West Bank city of Tulkarem. WAFA correspondent said Israeli forces opened fire on students at the campus of Palestine Technical University Kadoorie, injuring four Palestinians with rubber-coated steel bullets in their lower body parts. Forces also fired tear gas canisters at students who marched in protest of ongoing Israeli military encroachment upon their university campus, causing dozens to suffer from excessive tear gas inhalation. The four students were rushed into a Tulkarem hospital for medical treatment, while the other suffocation cases were treated at the scene. The university campus, which is located just close to the 1967 border with Israel, has been witnessing flaring clashes between Israeli forces and students during the past few days. According to the university’s public relations department, tension has been running high at the campus due to Israeli forces’ continuous attempts to take over part of the campus’ land for the benefit of expanding a nearby Israeli military training base.
WAFA and B’Tselem correspondents assaulted in Hebron
IMEMC/Agencies 24 Nov — Israeli forces manning a military checkpoint set up near al-Ibrahimi mosque in Hebron assaulted two correspondents working for WAFA news agency and B’Tselem, the Israeli human rights center. WAFA correspondent Jwed Tamimi and B’Tselem correspondent Manal Da‘na were both assaulted and roughly handled by Israeli soldiers after they crossed through a checkpoint placed near the Ibrahimi Mosque, reported Tamimi. Tamimi said Israeli army forces detained them for about 30 minutes after they crossed the checkpoint, where they were roughly handled and shoved by soldiers, and prevented from reaching their destination. He noted that they were on their way to al- Ibrahimieh School, near the Ibrahimi Mosque, in order to cover activities marking the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), which was adopted on November 20, 1989 . . . During October of 2015, Israeli army forces committed a total of 1,122 assaults against both males and female journalists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, according to a story issued by the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms on November 22, 2015.
Israeli forces raid Palestinian homes across Hebron district
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 23 Nov — Israeli forces on Monday afternoon raided Palestinian villages across the southern West Bank district of Hebron, detaining at least six Palestinians and searching for weapons, locals told Ma‘an. Israeli forces were reported to have raided the villages of Idhna, Deir Samit, Beit ‘Awwa, al-Muwarraq and Tarusa, as well as al-‘Arrub refugee camp. An Israeli army spokesperson said that Israeli forces performed “routine activities” in Hebron, searching in “open areas” for “concealed weapons.” In Idhna, Israeli forces raided the houses of four brothers, identified as Bilal, Ashraf, Rafat, and Saleh Khalil al-Batran, saying that they were searching for “combat tools.” The brothers told Ma‘an that the soldiers had damaged furniture during the raid. Israeli forces also raided the homes of Mirshed Abd al-Mahdi al-Tmeizi, Nidal Samih Isleimiyyeh, Yahiya Abu Jeheisheh, Omar Talab al-Nattah and Naim Muhammad Isleimiyyeh inside the village, locals said. The Isleimiyyeh family told Ma‘an that Naim is currently being held in Israeli custody and Israeli forces confiscated 21,000 shekels ($5,413) from his home during the raid. Meanwhile, in Tarusa, a small village with a population of less than 100 residents, Israeli forces raided the home of Raed Masalma, who carried out a stabbing attack in Tel Aviv on Thursday, killing two Israelis, before he was arrested. Israeli authorities issued a home demolition order to his family, as part of a retaliatory policy that rights groups have argued constitutes “collective punishment.” In Beit ‘Awwa, Israeli forces raided a municipality building and several homes, while closing off the entrances to the village with dirt mounds, barring traffic from entering or leaving, locals said . . . It was also reported that Israeli forces detained Ahmad Dirgham Imteirat, Thaer Jamil Mahmoud Ihmeidat, Hamadeh Khalid Ismail Manasra, and Udayy Mutaz Farid Zeidat from the villages of Bani Na‘im and Surif on Monday.
Israeli forces raid ‘Aida refugee camp, take over youth center
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 23 Nov – Israeli forces on Monday raided ‘Aida refugee camp near the northern entrance of Bethlehem city, causing small clashes to break out in the camp, locals said. Locals said one young man was shot with a rubber-coated steel bullet during the clashes, and a family of 18 suffered from severe tear gas inhalation when Israeli forces shot the gas “directly” at the family’s home. Most of the 18 were children, the family said, and one of the members most severely affected was an 87-year-old man. The family added that the home belongs to Khalil Baraqa‘a, who is currently serving time in an Israeli prison . . . During the raid, Israeli forces set up a military outpost on the roof of the camp’s youth community center as well a building next to it, the director of Lagee Center, Salah Ajarma, said. Ajarma said Israeli forces positioned snipers on the roof of the center and raised an Israeli flag. “The Israeli snipers on the roof [of the community center] means to us that Israeli forces have intentions to kill Palestinian children,” Ajarma said. Ajarma added that Israeli forces positioning themselves on the community center threatens the safe space the center strives to maintain, and “will deprive Palestinian children from coming to the center to join in on daily activities or from playing in the center’s garden and playground, because being there means that they may be sitting ducks for Israeli snipers.” . . .On Oct. 29, Israeli forces issued a disturbing message through a loud speaker to residents of Aida camp during a night raid, telling residents that unless they stop throwing stones at the forces during clashes, “we will gas you until you die.”
Night raids continue in Al-Khalil (Hebron)
HEBRON, Occupied Palestine 22 Nov by ISM, Al-Khalil Team — On Tuesday, 17th November, several groups of soldiers raided houses in the Wadi al-Hurriya neighborhood of al-Khalil (Hebron), an H1 district legally outside of Israeli control. From 7.30pm, Israeli forces were present in the area, divided into groups of 7-12 soldiers and entering every house and business on designated streets. At some of the residences they entered by force, violently smashing through doors. They checked every I.D card of the residents and also, according to soldiers who confronted the ISM volunteers, searched for weapons. Later in the night they informed the volunteers that they were looking for weapons and collecting data in order to prevent potential stabbings: “yes, some people are scared. But some people have reason to be scared.” Each group of soldiers patrolled different streets and dark alleys, checking each house and entering with backpacks, mapping equipment, bullet-proof vests, and cocked machine guns. On entering houses, 2-3 soldiers remained outside to “secure” the entrance, periodically pointing guns at passers-by and preventing vehicle and pedestrian passage through the streets. The raids lasted until at least 12.30am, after which one unit was witnessed occupying the second floor of a Palestinian house – the other half of which was inhabited by a Palestinian family – and could be heard setting up sleeping equipment. According to the soldiers questioned on site: “no, we are not inside a Palestinian house, they are not living in this house.”. . . It was reported later from residents who were in contact with ISM that furniture and property was damaged on the night. This is typical of night raids on Palestinian houses, and in other incidences money and other property has also been stolen.
Israeli detentions divide East Jerusalem family
JERUSALEM (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — An East Jerusalem family has been torn apart by Israeli detentions, a Palestinian father told Ma‘an from his home. Hamza Shaloudi has been living without his wife, Shifaa, and two of his sons, Fadi, 14, and Samir, 17, ever since Israeli forces invaded his home and detained the three last month. When Israeli forces first came, Hamza assumed they took his wife as a guardian to accompany their children. He later realized the forces may have detained her because is from the West Bank and was living in Jerusalem without an Israeli permit. After a few court hearings, Hamza was informed of the charges pressed against his wife. An Israeli military prosecutor submitted a bill of indictment accusing her of incitement against Israel and of helping protesters throw stones and bottles at Israeli forces during clashes in Silwan. The indictment also included that she was living in Jerusalem illegally. Last week, a judge ruled to send Shifaa home on house arrest, but the military prosecution moved against the decision and issued an appeal, which was accepted by Israel’s central court in Jerusalem, Hazma said. Meanwhile, Hamza has been left to care for his 15-year-old son, who has a disability, and an eight-year-old daughter, Sidra, who he says has not stopped asking about her mother since the detention. While his wife and older son are still being held in Israeli prison, his 14-year-old son was released on house arrest but reportedly barred by Israeli authorities from living with his father . . . Hamza is unaware of the current status of his eldest son Samir, but fears he will be sentenced to a full sentence at Givon prison, where he currently being held. Samir was reportedly charged with throwing stones at Israeli forces — the most common charge raised against Palestinian children — which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. While Hamza has tried to visit his wife and son in detention, he told Ma‘an he has been refused permission on the grounds that Hamza served a seven-month Israeli prison sentence 24 years ago. Hamza said the only thing he can do is wait, and hope his family is soon reunited.
Israeli forces detain 8-year-old boy near Hebron
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — Israeli forces detained an eight-year-old Palestinian boy from the town of Beit Ummar on Tuesday, a local official said. Muhammad Ayyad Awad, spokesperson of a popular committee, said that Israeli soldiers held Youssef Ahmad Mahmoud al-Alami, eight, for more than two hours before arresting him. He was handcuffed, blindfolded, and forced to lie on the ground before being taken to the Etzion DCO for interrogation. Al-Ajami’s family were prevented from approaching their son during the incident. The Palestinian liaison office has made contact with their Israeli counterpart to secure the boy’s release.
Israeli forces detain Palestinian child, 9, near Bethlehem
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — Israeli military forces on Tuesday detained a nine-year-old Palestinian child from the village of Tuqu‘ south of Bethlehem, witnesses said. Locals told Ma‘an that Israeli soldiers detained Yasin Ahmad al-Badan on his way home from school, claiming he had broken an Israeli soldiers’ leg while throwing rocks. The child was transferred to the Etzion DCO for questioning. Teachers from his school attempted to prevent the young boy’s arrest. During the first 12 days of November, Israeli forces detained 416 Palestinians, including 122 minors, the PPS reported earlier this month.
Israeli forces detain two Palestinian women from Bethlehem
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 23 Nov — Israeli forces on Monday detained two woman, including a disabled 68-year-old, from a village southeast of Bethlehem city in the southern occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) said in a statement. The PPS said Israeli forces detained Khadra Ali Jibreel, 68, who is confined to a wheelchair and is in poor health. The woman is the mother of Rabe Ata Jibreel, a Palestinian who was detained on Aug. 20 and is being held without trial or charge under Israel’s administrative detention policy. Because of Khadra’s poor health, Israeli forces demanded her daughter, Samah Ata Jibreel, 28, be detained as well. The two were taken to a military checkpoint near Rachel’s Tomb at the northern entrance of Bethlehem. The PPS added that the woman’s son, Rabe, suffers from cirrhosis and heart disease. Out of the at least 6,700 Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons, only 44 of them are women, according to documentation by rights group, Addameer.
Israeli troops detain 31 Palestinians across West Bank, Jerusalem
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — Israeli forces detained 31 Palestinians across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem overnight Monday and into Tuesday, locals told Ma‘an. Most of the detainees were taken from the occupied West Bank districts of Hebron, Nablus and Jericho. Nine Palestinians, one of whom was a 15-year-old boy, were detained from the southern occupied district of Hebron, local sources said . . . Prisoners’ rights group Addameer said at the end of October that the “recent wave of mass arrests has resulted in severe overcrowding” in Israeli prisons and detention and interrogation centers. Such overcrowding has led to a significant worsening of already poor conditions, the group added, and hundreds of those detained have been children. Increased detentions are one of several large-scale measures implemented by Israeli authorities that Amnesty International has labelled as collective punishment on Palestinians. Other measures include road closures, sealing entrances of towns and villages, home demolitions, and invasive and humiliating security checks on individuals.
Palestinian gunmen fire at Israeli settler car near Ramallah
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — Palestinian gunmen opened fire at an Israeli settler vehicle near Ramallah on Tuesday, Israeli media reported. An Israeli settler driving near Ofra said she heard gunfire and Israeli security forces later said that bullet holes were found on her vehicle, Israeli news site Ynet reported. Shell casings were found at a site nearby, with the gunmen having already fled the scene. No injuries were reported.
Fifteen masked settlers attack olive field in Burin
[with photos] BURIN, Occupied Palestine 24 Nov (ISM Nablus Team) — On November the 24th at approximately 10 am, fifteen masked settlers from the Yitzhar settlement near Burin, south of Nablus, rushed toward an olive field where four Palestinians and two internationals were harvesting. Twenty minutes earlier, the Yitzhar security car, which is usually driven by the head of the settlement security Isaak Levy, was parked on the hilltop from which the fields could be observed. During the next twenty minutes, more settlers gathered on the hilltop and then ran, still in the presence of the settlement security, towards the field, causing Palestinians and internationals to gather olives, tarps and ladders and flee. Further down the hill, another farmer reported that he could see the settlers uphill breaking off branches from the trees and starting a fire, but Israeli forces prevented the farmers from reentering the field, claiming that the permit for entering the field to harvest was not valid until Saturday.
Israeli attempts to stop the uprising
Israel limits number of settlers storming the Aqsa Mosque
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (PIC) 23 Nov — Israeli police decided to limit the number of settlers who storm the Aqsa Mosque in order to contain Palestinians’ outrage and also in an attempt to legitimize dividing the Muslims’ holy site. The Translation and Monitoring Department at the PIC quoted the Israeli Channel Seven as saying that Israeli police will allow 45 settlers to visit the Aqsa Mosque in the morning and 15 settlers in the evening starting from Monday. The Israeli Occupation Authority (IOA) claims that the purpose of this move is to reduce the confrontation with Palestinians. However, Palestinians opined that it indicates the Israeli failure to protect settlers in light of Jerusalem Intifada.
Government considers expelling terrorists’ families to Gaza
Ynet 24 Nov by Yoav Zitun — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister met Monday with IDF top brass and among other measures are considering expelling the families of terrorists to the Gaza Strip . . . Aside from the immediate destruction of terrorists’ homes, it was decided that their close family members would have their Israeli work permits canceled as well as their exit permits to Jordan. The decision was taken after in at least one attack in Gush Etzion in recent days, it became known that the terrorist told his mother of his intention to carry out an attack, and she did not prevent him from attacking. It was also decided to reinforce the resolute actions being carried out by the Shin Bet nightly against Hamas in the West Bank, and to begin a series of administrative detentions against activists affiliated with Hamas for fear that they will build terror cells, with the encouragement of top Hamas members in Gaza. Its members call its activists in the West Bank to carry out attacks.
Report: Israel still detains 32 bodies of Palestinian martyrs
RAMALLAH (PIC) 24 Nov — As part of its mass punishment policy against the Palestinians, the Israeli security authorities still refuse to release the bodies of 32 martyrs, who carried out recent heroic counterattacks against Israelis. The Israeli occupation forces had released 11 dead bodies of Palestinians since the outbreak of al-Quds intifada (uprising) in early October, but they refused to release 32 others, according to a report released on Monday by Al-Quds Center for Israeli and Palestinian studies. Director of the center Alaa al-Rimawi said that Israel’s detention of Palestinian dead bodies was aimed at affecting the course of events and making the Palestinian youths think twice before rising up against it, pointing out that such measure had been used during the first and second intifadas (uprisings). Rimawi expressed his belief that Israel’s persistence in detaining the bodies of Palestinian martyrs would only lead to more resistance attacks and activities against it.
New racist Knesset bill calling for closing mosques
NAZARETH (PIC) 25 Nov — About 15 members of the Knesset from hardline parties have submitted a draft law demanding the closure of Palestinian mosques which incite violence against Israelis. The bill was introduced Tuesday by MK Bezalel Smotrich, from the Jewish Home, and signed by MKs from his party as well as Likud, Kulanu and Yisrael Beytenu. “While this behavior (incitement) was banned many years ago in the penal code, no legislation has been made against the places where incitement to violence occurs,” the bill read. The bill, however, did not talk about the incitement against the Palestinians that is preached on a daily basis by rabbis at synagogues and religious institutes. The Knesset recently approved multiple racist bills aimed at punishing the Palestinians for defending themselves against Israeli violations. If the bill is sanctioned, dozens of mosques in the 1948 occupied lands as well as in the West Bank and Jerusalem will be closed.
Israeli forces assault 8 Palestinian prisoners in detention center
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Israeli forces assaulted eight Palestinian prisoners being held in the Etzion jail on Tuesday, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society said. PPS lawyer Jacklin Fararja said 20 Israeli officers assaulted Yousef Erekat after he was summoned for interrogation. Erekat was then forced to take off his clothes and coerced into confessing to charges of stone-throwing. Another detainee, Ismael Muhammad Bader, 44, was beaten around the head with guns and tied up for five hours, while Nael Yousif al-Qadi, 24, was also assaulted and left tied up for two hours, the lawyer added. Prisoners Haroun Eid, 24, Awni Qasem Shawasha, 27, Ahmad Yousef Qazzaz, 18, Abdullah Ekhlayel, 26, and Jihad Thawabtah, 19, were also assaulted by Israeli forces.
Gazan in critical condition after being shot in stomach during clashes
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 23 Nov — Israeli forces shot and injured a Palestinian youth in the stomach during clashes in central Gaza on Monday, the spokesperson for the Gaza-based Ministry of Health said. Ashraf al-Qidra told Ma‘an that a youth in his twenties arrived at Shuhada al-Aqsa Hospital with a live bullet in his stomach. Al-Qidra said the youth was immediately taken to the operating room and was in critical condition. The young man was reportedly shot during clashes east of al-Bureij refugee camp, the site of frequent clashes since the start of October . . .
On Friday Israeli forces shot and injured 33 Palestinians with live fire during clashes near al-Bureij camp and Khan Younis. At least two of the injuries from live fire in Gaza on Friday were reported as critical.
Israel launches airstrike on site in central Gaza
IGAZA (WAFA) 24 Nov — The Israeli army, on Tuesday, continued to breach the truce agreement reached between the Palestinian-Israeli sides under the Egyptian auspices earlier in August 2014, launching an airstrike on a site in central Gaza Strip, however, no injuries were reported. WAFA correspondent said that Israeli F16 warplanes fired at least two missiles targeting a location near the entrance of al-Maghazi refugee camp, resulting in its destruction. Reconnaissance drones reportedly hovered over Gaza at low altitudes throughout the night hours, until dawn, amid the firing of flares and thermal bombs. The attack came in response to a missile that was allegedly fired from Gaza toward an area in southern Israel.
Israeli gunboats attack fishermen in Gaza waters
GAZA (PIC) 24 Nov — The Israeli occupation navy on Monday evening opened machinegun fire intensively at Palestinian fishing boats off the northern coast of the Gaza Strip. Eyewitnesses said the fishermen were working within the permitted fishing zone when Israeli gunboats attacked them. Luckily, none of the fishermen suffered injuries during the gunfire attack.
Temporary work plan to be prepared for Gaza’s Rafah crossing
CAIRO,(WAFA) 24 Nov – Member of Fatah Central Committee Azzam al-Ahmad Tuesday said a temporary work plan for the Gaza Strip’s Rafah border crossing is going to finalized in the upcoming few days. Al-Ahmad said during a meeting held in Fatah’s office in Cairo that the priority in crossing the border is going to be granted to students, patients, and individuals working abroad and carrying visas or residency permits from other countries. The travel procedures through the crossing to the remaining Palestinians in Gaza will be coordinated with the Egyptian side and facilitated based on “Egypt’s considerations”.
3,500 medical patients wait for Rafah crossing to open
IMEMC/Agencies 24 Nov — Some 3,500 patients in Gaza are eagerly awaiting the opening of Rafah crossing, on the joint borders between the Gaza Strip and Egypt, in order to travel to receive medical treatment in Arab and international hospitals, says Ministry of Health spokesperson, Ashraf Al-Qidra. In a radio statement on Monday, Al-Qidra expressed his deep concern regarding the seriously deteriorating health conditions in the Gaza Strip, in light of the standing closure of the Rafah crossing . . . Al-Qidra called on the International Red Cross, as well as other medical and human rights organizations, to exert pressure in opening the crossing, and to allow patients travel to receive medical treatment. Since the beginning of this year, Rafah crossing has only been opened for 19 days, during which only a few hundred people managed to travel abroad.
Life of limbo for Palestinians denied IDs by Israel
EI 23 Nov by Isra Saleh el-Namey — . . . Diaa Muhammad was born in Gaza but lived in Kuwait for 30 years, where she was also married. Neither she nor any of her four sons have an identity card. The 67-year-old faces a lot of trouble when she needs medical services from government facilities. “I have to use my sister’s identity card to be able to have access to the medical care sector,” Muhammad said. “Things will definitely go wrong when my sister needs to visit any of these medical clinics.” Muhammad needs to go abroad for specialized treatment on her right eye that is not available in Gaza. But she lacks an ID or passport that would enable her to cross the borders. “They recommended that I have the operation in Jordan, but that will be impossible. We can’t go anywhere,” she said.
According to Nasser Sarraj, the deputy of the civil affairs ministry in Gaza, Hajjaj and Muhammad are only two cases from among the 40,000 to 50,000 Palestinians in Gaza who do not have ID cards or any official status recognized by Israel, which controls the population registry. “This situation is a product of Israeli policy, and it is Israel’s responsibility to change it,” he said. Although the Palestinian Authority issues identity cards, it’s Israel that ultimately determines who gets approved or not. The problem stems back to the 1967 War, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians temporarily fled the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Israel then withdrew their names from the Palestinian civil registry, stripping them of their right to reside in those territories newly occupied by its military . . . A Palestinian without an identity card is permitted to apply for family reunification if one of his or her parents holds an identity card. But that mechanism has been frozen by Israel for years. The civil affairs ministry’s Sarraj said that his office received more than 5,000 requests for ID cards, yet none have been issued.
Dozens of Palestinians visit relatives jailed in Israel’s Nafha prison
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 23 Nov — Dozens of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip visited relatives jailed in Israel on Monday in a visit coordinated by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Around 58 Palestinians, including 13 children, entered Israel via the Erez, or Beit Hanoun, crossing to visit 31 relatives jailed in the Nafha prison. The ICRC “Family Visits Program” for Gazans was suspended by Israeli authorities in June 2007 when Hamas won the Palestinian elections . . . During a Palestinian prisoners’ hunger strike in April 2012, one of the prisoners’ key demands was that the program be reinstated. Israel agreed to resume the visits on the conclusion of the hunger strike, although Addameer has reported that many Gaza prisoners in Israel have not been allowed to receive visitors. More than 350 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip were being jailed in Israel as of October, according to Addameer.
500 Startups diversity head expands Geekettes to support female entrepreneurs in Gaza
VentureBeat 22 Nov — Nearly four years ago, Jess Erickson started a program called Geekettes as a way to bring diversity into the tech ecosystem. She set out on a mission to reach out to women around the globe, bringing them together in the hopes of building a community around developing technology. After launching in cities throughout the U.S. and in Europe, Erickson, who is also the director of diversity at 500 Startups, along with her cofounder, Denise Philipp, set their sights on Gaza in Palestine. Accordingly, they have partnered with Gaza Sky Geeks, the first and only startup accelerator in the country, to support female entrepreneurs. The goal of this new hub is to provide opportunities, innovation, job creation, startup support, online workshops, and inspiration to the “next generation of ladies” entering the market. An area that’s roughly twice the size of Washington, D.C., Gaza is said to offer a more equal playing field for women when it comes to taking leadership roles in the startup space. Run by the global humanitarian organization Mercy Corps, Gaza Sky Geeks has the big responsibility of supporting Gaza’s slowly growing startup scene, and roughly 50 percent of its startups are run by female founders . . . “There are a lot of young women in Gaza who are interested both in technology entrepreneurship and in software development,” said Wafaa Bardawil, a co-ambassador for Gaza Geekettes. “At the Al-Azhar University in Gaza, where I am studying Computer Systems Engineering, about half of the students are female. The start of the local Geekettes chapter gives this entire community new global opportunities.” (Continued)
Ottoman coins found in Gaza
MEMO 24 Nov — Coins dating from the Ottoman Caliphate period have been found by workers renovating a building in the Gaza Strip, Quds Press has reported. The coins were discovered on Sunday in the neighbourhood of Al-Shejaia, which is part of the Old City of Gaza. “While working in Baghdad Street in Gaza, a number of coins burst from an old wall,” explained the Director of Gaza Municipality’s Planning Department, Nihad Al-Mughanni. “They scattered on the ground and many were taken away by local people.” The area was quickly cordoned off by security officers and experts were called in, he added. Al-Mughanni pointed out that the Ottoman coins date back to 1730. The security forces are retrieving the coins taken from the haul by local people.
Land, property theft & destruction / Settlements
New Jewish settlements planned ‘on top of’ Bedouin villages
+972 mag 23 Nov by Natasha Roth — The Israeli government on Sunday approved a plan for five new Jewish settlements to be built in the Negev (Naqab) in the south of Israel. The plan, which was submitted by Housing Minister Yoav Galant of Kulanu, threatens to displace thousands of Bedouin from their homes. Two of the settlements are due to be built where Bedouin villages already exist, according to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI). The new town of Daya is to be established on top of the unrecognized village of Katamat, which would displace its 1,500 Bedouin residents. Neve Gurion, meanwhile, is meant to be built on part of the land of the recognized village of Be’er Hadaj, home to 6,000 Bedouin citizens of Israel . . . The government’s announcement comes just weeks after the unrecognized Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in the Negev was demolished for the 90th time. Israel’s continual razing of Al Araqib began in 2010, and the village has become a symbol of the ethnic discrimination that characterizes the state’s policies in the Negev. Since the founding of the State of Israel, Jewish settlement in the Negev has been considered Zionism’s final frontier — an impression largely instilled by the vision of David Ben-Gurion, the country’s first prime minister. (Continued)
Israeli settlers set up tents south of Jenin
JENIN (WAFA) 23 Nov – A group of Israeli settlers Monday raided south of Silat al-Daher, south of Jenin, and set up tents at the site of illegal ‘Homesh’ settlement, which was evicted years ago. Ziad Abu Diak, Mayor of Silat al-Daher, said WAFA settlers, protected by Israeli army soldiers, raided the area, verbally abused Palestinians, and set up tents.
Arbitrary use of closed military zone orders in Hebron
HEBRON, Occupied Palestine 22 Nov by ISM, Al-Khalil Team — After being allowed back to their legally owned apartment in Tel Rumeida in occupied al-Khalil (Hebron) on Thursday, international human rights defenders were kicked out from their home for the third time by Israeli forces the following day. The draconian restrictions of the ‘closed military zone’ orders had been slightly lifted on Thursday with no new order issued. The lifting of the closed military zone orders gave the impression that Palestinian residents could, for the first time since weeks, be able to pass the street without being detained while Israeli forces would check their IDs and names on a list of ‘residents’. The international solidarity activists returned to their legally rented house on Thursday afternoon. After only one day, police and soldiers came into the house on Friday afternoon ordering them to leave immediately. The order Israeli forces showed to the internationals was clearly only a photocopy without an official stamp or signature. When the internationals showed their rental contract, the police officer started yelling at them and threatened them saying if they ‘don’t leave within ten minutes, [he] will use force’. Due to the threat of physical violence – that was used on internationals before when they were illegally evicted from this apartment – they decided to leave. Two days later, on Sunday, when attempting to go back to their house, Israeli forces showed the internationals an order dated to the end of the week. When internationals then requested to be allowed to go to their apartment, as this order was not in place at that particular time, they were ordered to wait for no reason. A few minutes later, a jeep with more soldiers drove up and one of them was clearly seen holding a pile of papers, writing something on one of them. He then handed the paper to a soldier that presented it to the internationals as a new closed military zone ‘order’ for that day. It was obvious that soldiers are now having blank copies of ‘closed military zone’ orders that they can fill in arbitrarily with any dates. Since 1st November, the Israeli forces have been bringing new ‘closed military zone’ orders, renewing them every day. Virtually every Palestinian passing in any direction has to undergo humiliating, degrading and violent bag- and body-searches at gunpoint as well as ID-checks. The area covered by that order was deliberately designed to encompass only Palestinian residents and international human rights defenders while excluding the neighbouring illegal Israeli settlement, thus entirely exempting Israeli settlers from these tactics.
Palestinian refugees – Syria
Report: 3064 Palestinians have died in the Syrian conflict
ISTANBUL (PIC) 24 Nov — The Action Group for Palestinians of Syria said about 3064 Palestinian refugees have died since the outbreak of the Syrian conflict in March, 2011. About 1053 were killed by the Syrian regime shelling, 678 were killed in clashes with the Syrian army and the armed opposition and 423 refugees died of torture in Syrian jails.
A report issued on Monday by the Action Group showed that the Syrian forces targeted the road connecting Khan al-Sheikh refugee camp to Zakiya town near Damascus by heavy machinegun fire with no casualties reported. The mentioned road is the only pathway left for the residents of Khan al-Sheikh camp to reach Damascus after the closure of all other routes by the Syrian army barriers which force Palestinian refugees to take that too risky road.
Activism / Solidarity / BDS
Protesters stage citizen’s arrest of Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely at West Coast Ha’aretz conference
Mondoweiss 23 Nov by Annie Robbins — Bay Area activists pulled off an awesome action yesterday at Ha’aretz’s Zionism 3.0: Israel’s Place in Tomorrow’s World conference in Palo Alto, California. As Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely was introduced and stepped up to the podium a clear voice rang out: “Tzipi Hotovely this is a citizens’ arrest! We charge you with inciting colonial violence” Check out the video:. . . Remember Tzipi Hotovely? The Israeli official who dreams to see the Israeli flag flying at Al Aqsa/Temple Mount. In her inaugural speech to the foreign ministry she explained she was on a mission to convince the world Israel inherited the occupied Palestinian territories from God. “This land is ours. All of it is ours. We did not come here to apologize for that”. Hotovely is the gold standard of why two states is dead in the water — she categorically rejects the concept altogether and farcically would be responsible for representing Israel if negotiations with Palestinians resumed. “Judea and Samaria aren’t even on the list of options we’re offering the Palestinians.”
British Labour drops G4S over Israeli prisons
AIC 24 Nov — The British Labour Party will no longer be doing business with G4S. The National Executive Committee of the party voted 12-4 to boycott G4S over its involvement with Israeli repression against Palestinians – providing security systems and control rooms to Israeli prisons imprisoning Palestinian prisoners and equipment to Israeli police training centers in Jerusalem. Campaigners have long called upon the Labour Party to stop doing business with G4S, whose human rights abuses are not limited to Palestine but include its record on forced deportations from the United Kingdom, prisons in South Africa, mining companies in Canada and elsewhere. Protests have taken place outside Labour Party conferences calling for an end to the contracts with G4S. Palestinian political prisoners have urged international action to boycott G4S. This comes as 220 Palestinian and international organizations are calling on the United Nations to stop doing business with G4S. The UN provides G4S, the world’s largest private security corporation, with $22 million in business annually. A week of action began on Monday with a protest in New York City during the UN’s commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, calling on the UN to join the boycott of G4S.
West Bank wineries to Europe: ‘Label this!’
The Forward 23 Nov by Naomi Zeveloff — Sitting in the warehouse of his winery in the Israeli- occupied West Bank, Amichai Lourie picked up a bottle of 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon and pointed to a label where the name of his settlement, “Shiloh,” was scrawled in white ink. The European Union has said that it will label goods from exclusively Jewish West Bank settlements, which the world community views as violators of international law. But Lourie said he has nothing to hide. “I don’t need someone to tell me to mark the wine,” he said. “I’m marking it voluntarily.” In fact, interviews with settler wine makers indicate they are ready to combat the E.U. decision by aggressively marketing their kosher wines and other products. They are highlighting, rather than hiding, the fact that they come from “Judea and Samaria,” biblical parlance for the West Bank. The E.U.’s new guidelines, announced November 11, call on the union’s 28 member countries to label products from the Israeli West Bank settlements with the phrase “made in settlements.” The policy is billed as a technical move that aims merely to clarify their place of origin. But it is also understood widely as an effort to exert pressure on Israel’s settlement enterprise amid growing frustration in Europe over the stagnant Israeli-Palestinian peace process. In addition to wine, the E.U.-mandated label will be on fruits and vegetables, olive oil, honey, eggs, poultry and cosmetics. The designation will affect less than 1% of Israeli exports to the 28 member nations. But Israeli economists say that the decision could have broader consequences if European stores opt to stop bringing in Israeli goods to avoid the hassle of labeling items. Israeli politicians also warn that the new guidelines open the door to boycotts of Israeli goods. (Continued)
Case of Gaza family killed in their sleep taken to International Criminal Court
EI 23 Nov by Ali Abunimah –“We have become used to Israel killing and injuring Palestinians in the Gaza Strip,” says Bouthaineh al-Louh. “But nothing could have fully prepared me for the devastating loss of my sons, grandsons and granddaughters in an attack against our family home.” Al-Louh is one of the Palestinians whose cases are included in evidence submitted Monday to Fatou Bensouda, the chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC), of crimes documented by Palestinian human rights organizations during Israel’s 2014 offensive against the Gaza Strip. “On 20 August 2014 at 4:45am, Israel attacked our home in Deir al-Balah whilst my family was fast asleep. My son and two stepsons were killed in the attack, as well as my nine-months pregnant daughter-in-law and her three children,” al-Louh says in a statement from Al-Haq, whose director Shawan Jabarin handed the file to Bensouda in The Hague. The evidence addresses specific attacks on Palestinian homes, hospitals, schools and high-rise buildings. It was submitted by Al-Haq, Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Aldameer and the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights under a provision of the court’s founding Rome Statute that permits the prosecutor to launch investigations on her own initiative on the basis of information she receives. This can include evidence submitted by states, human rights organizations and international bodies. Monday’s submission is the first of its kind, according to the Center for Constitutional Rights, whose attorney Katherine Gallagher accompanied the Palestinian delegation to the ICC. If Bensouda’s preliminary analysis finds there is a “reasonable basis to proceed,” the prosecutor must seek permission from a panel of judges, known as a pre-trial chamber, to open a formal investigation. (Continued)
HRW condemns Saudi death sentence for Palestinian poet
GAZA (Ma‘an) 23 Nov — An international human rights organization on Monday condemned Saudi Arabia over a court decision last week to sentence Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh to death for renouncing Islam. “This death sentence against Fayadh is yet another indictment of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record,” Human Rights Watch’s Middle East director, Sarah Leah Whitson said in a statement. “The Saudi authorities should immediately vacate this sentence and order Fayadh’s release.” Ashraf Fayadh was sentenced to death on Nov. 17 for “alleged blasphemous statements during a discussion group and in a book of his poetry,” HRW said. Fayadh denied the charges, saying that another man made false accusations to the country’s religious police “following a personal dispute,” according to HRW. He has 30 days to appeal the sentence . . . Fayadh’s sister, Raeda Fayadh, who has been living in the Gaza Strip since 2013, told Ma‘an on Monday that she trusted her brother was innocent of the charges brought against him, saying that he was a Muslim who had frequently quoted the Quran in his writing. Fayadh, whose family originally came from Gaza, was born and raised in Saudi Arabia, where he has worked as a poet, painter, and photographer at the forefront of Saudi Arabia’s art scene. (Continued)
Kerry supports Israeli ‘self-defense’ against ‘senseless terrorism’
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 24 Nov — US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday expressed support for Israel’s right to “defend” itself from “terrorism” and “senseless violence,” in comments that will be viewed as deeply disappointing by Palestinians. Speaking before a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, Kerry said: “It is very clear to us that the terrorism, these acts of terrorism which have been taking place, deserve the condemnation that they are receiving.” He expressed his “complete condemnation for any act of terror that takes innocent lives and disrupts the day-to-day life of a nation.” Kerry made no mention of either Palestinians or Israel’s nearly 50-year military occupation of the Palestinian territory in the comments. At least 93 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis since the beginning of October. While Israel alleged many of those were attempting to attack Israelis when they were shot, Palestinians and rights groups have disputed Israel’s version of events in a number of cases.
New settlement spat emerges as Kerry visits Israel
JERUSALEM (AP) 24 Nov by Bradley Klapper — A new spat emerged between the Israeli government and Washington over Jewish settlements on Tuesday, as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry visited Israel and the West Bank for the first time in more than a year. As Kerry set aside his goal of a long-sought peace accord to make way for more modest hopes of an end to two months of deadly violence, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for the recognition of some existing settlement blocs in exchange for steps to ease tensions with the Palestinians. In Washington, the State Department quickly rejected any suggestion the U.S. would alter its longstanding opposition to settlements or recognize them as legitimate outside of a peace agreement. There were no signs that Kerry made headway in easing tensions during his meetings with Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
€10 million made available to UNRWA by European Commission
IMEMC/Agencies 24 Nov — Yesterday, the European Commission announced an additional €10 million in support to UNRWA, in order to keep schools open, and to maintain core services for Palestinian refugees. According to the official press release, this contribution, which comes in addition to the €10 million granted in October, brings the 2015 EU support for UNRWA’s General Fund up to €102 million. Additional support to the Palestinian Authority totaling €1.525 million has also been provided by Austria (€1.5 million) and Portugal (€25,000) through the PEGASE mechanism. This facility allows Member States, in partnership with the EU, to provide assistance in a coherent and cost-effective manner directly to the Palestinian Authority.
How one Palestinian is racing to get to the Olympics
RAMALLAH (Al-Monitor) 24 Nov by Ash Gallagher — Palestinian fitness instructor hopes to make it to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, despite discouragement from the Palestinian Olympic Committee — Munching on dates for energy, 25-year-old Mohamed al-Khatib starts his morning at sunrise, hoping for an opportunity to use a track field at a local high school in Ramallah. Khatib is a yoga and fitness instructor who is training for a chance to attend the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil and race in the 100-meter and 200-meter track and field events. In order to get access to the track, Khatib must ask the school’s security guard for the keys. But the guard doesn’t always permit him to use the track, particularly on school days. With the games just nine months away, running Aug. 5-21, 2016, and no access to proper Olympic training or official qualifying races in Palestine, Khatib told Al-Monitor he plans to train in the United States. “The plan is still in process, [but] I am going to Houston in Texas to train for three months. Hopefully this will be the first step to being qualified,” he explained. (Continued)
West Bank supermarket is oasis of coexistence on day of multiple attacks
GUSH ETZION (The Media Line) 22 Nov by Noga Tarnopolsky — Three terror attacks had been perpetrated by Palestinians against Israelis in the West Bank on Sunday, and it was still only 3 pm . . . A twenty year-old woman, Hadar Buchris from Safed (Tzfat) was killed when she was stabbed in the head while waiting at the popular hitchhiking post at Gush Etzion, a bloc of communities located several miles south of Jerusalem. The attacker was shot and killed by a waiting soldier . . . Half an hour before the attack that killed the young woman, the area was surprisingly serene. Jewish and Arab workers loitered, joking and smoking, outside the Rami Levy supermarket, teasing an armed guard, Shalom, for his Peruvian appearance. “Hola,” one said. “I’m Indian,” he retorted, referring to his grandparents’ place of birth. Suddenly, a dark-skinned man in a tight grey t-shirt barreled through, yelling, in Arabic, “Where’s the meat?!” The group of men dissolved in laughter. It turned out to be the punch-line of an inside joke, and the barrel-chested man in question, Nimrod Cohen, a Jew, is a distributor for Carmel Wines. He pulled one of his Arab buddies aside to tell him a private joke: . . . Despite the attacks, and the consequent pressure faced by the supermarket chain’s owner, Rami Levy, to dismiss his Arab workers, the supermarket’s deputy manager, Yinon Gutman, says “everything is normal.” Shoppers? Employees? “Everything is the same.” A security guard who has worked at the locale since its opening six years ago, agreed: “Nothing’s changed.” Dror Sharabi, a tour guide who was returning to his home in the Gush Etzion community of Alon Shvut after several days away, averred that there were “somewhat fewer shoppers than you’d usually see here on a Sunday.” The market was sparsely populated, but it was midday on the first work day of the week. “Some Palestinians have stopped coming to shop here,” he said. “They are also afraid. They’re even more afraid, actually.” . . . Khalil Abu Farrah, a resident of nearby Bethlehem, has been working in the cheese department for the past year and a half. “What good would come of it if the Arab workers are fired?” he asked. Sharabi looked up at him: “Look at him—what a sweetheart.” The terror attacks circle ever closer to the supermarket but have yet to penetrate its perimeter. No customers or employees have ever been involved, as perpetrators or as victims, in terror attacks.