Al Jazeera reports: Adoption of a bill by Israeli cabinet ministers aimed at imposing tougher penalties on stone-throwers is the latest discriminatory measure by Israel, singling out Palestinians, a Palestinian diplomat has told Al Jazeera. The draft law stipulates 10 years in jail for stone-throwers without the need to prove the defendant’s intention to harm anyone. “When it comes to the Palestinians and Israelis, Israel has two different judicial systems. One is applicable to Israeli citizens and the other for Palestinians,” Maen Rashid Areikat, the chief of Palestinian Liberation Organisation Delegation in Washington DC, told Al Jazeera.
Category Archives: Features
Haaretz reports: President Reuven Rivlin yesterday described academic boycotts against Israel as a “strategic threat of the first order.” During a discussion of the issue at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, the chairman of the Council of Presidents of Israeli Universities, Technion president Prof. Peretz Lavie, said it was still possible to stop the snowball effect of the movement, but warned that “we are at the 90th minute.”
Ma‘an reports: Heavy traffic jams were reported along the main road between Hebron and Bethlehem on Monday as a settler bicycle race took place in the area. The 30-minute drive between the two cities took three hours as Israeli forces closed a main exit from Hebron connecting to Route 60 as settlers from Kiryat Arba took part in a race.
A young Palestinian, Baraa Kalaid Madhun, 16, of Hebron is suspected of throwing stones at an Israeli occupying military base. Soldiers have told him that if he leaves his house between 6 PM and 11 AM they will break his legs. And if no stones are thrown in the next 30 days, they say it will be proven that he did so.
Ma‘an reports: “Right-wing Jews and Israeli police officers physically assaulted Palestinian security guards on duty at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound early Tuesday.”
AFP: Israeli nationalists and police clashed with Palestinians in occupied east Jerusalem on Sunday as crowds of Jewish hardliners marched across the city to mark the 48th anniversary of its capture.
AFP reports: “Israeli soldiers fired tear gas, rubber and live bullets at Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip on Friday, wounding at least 21 people, medics and security sources said. Clashes took place near Ramallah and farther north in Nablus, after a new Israeli cabinet took office and as Palestinians marked 67 years since the Nakba.”
The Alternative Information Center reports: Israel’s new government is planning to “legalise” West Bank settlement construction conducted in contravention of Israeli law, according to the coalition agreement between Likud and the Jewish Home. This stands in stark contrast to the demolition policy implemented by Israel against Palestinian-owned homes built without permits.
The Alternative Information Center reports: “Besieged Palestinian communities in the occupied West Bank’s Jordan Valley have called on the international community to immediately intervene to halt Israeli military training in the area, which has already resulted in the temporary deportation of residents from four villages from their homes and threatens the future livelihood of these communities. Massive Israeli military training in the northern Jordan Valley began on Sunday, with forces using live ammunition around the homes and farms of Palestinian communities.”
Ma’an reports: “A number of Palestinian journalists were injured on Saturday when Israeli forces suppressed a peaceful march organised by journalists to mark World Press Freedom Day. Israeli forces fired tear-gas canisters and stun grenades into the crowd of journalists marching in Bethlehem. [Head of the Union of Palestinian Journalists Abd al-Nasser al-Najjar] said that the march was carried out to express ‘our refusal to systematic Israeli suppression policies against journalists even as they express their right of coverage and freedom of expression.'”
Ma’an reports: “Hundreds of Palestinians attended the funeral of Muhammad Murad Yahiya, 18, on Tuesday after he was shot dead by Israeli forces late Monday in al-‘Araqa village in western Jenin. ‘Israel assassinated my son in cold blood,’ Yahiya’s father, Murad, told Ma‘an. ‘After a family wedding Muhammad and several of his friends went walking in our lands near the separation wall when Israeli soldiers opened fire and hit him.'”
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) says no house has been reconstructed in the besieged Gaza Strip eight months after the end of the Israel’s latest war on the blockaded area.
Marc Ellis first met Cornel West almost thirty years ago when he was invited to share the podium with him on the subject of Israel and the Palestinians. Since then West has become a leading African American public intellectual and has taken daring stands in support of Palestinians, including during Israel’s attack on Gaza last summer. Ellis reflects on West’s career and prophetic voice in light of Michael Eric Dyson’s New Republic article excoriating West. Ellis writes, “Though Dyson’s predicted fall of Cornel West is clearly exaggerated, his penchant for disciplining West’s prophetic voice should be taken seriously.”
From Haaretz: “A Palestinian youth has lost an eye, apparently as a result of being shot at with a sponge bullet. It is the latest of a series of similar incidents in which Palestinian youths and children, primarily in East Jerusalem, have lost eyes to sponge bullets fired by the Israeli security services.”
Ahmad Jaradat writes for the AIC: “The southern West Bank city of Hebron is under what local Palestinians are calling a siege to enable tens of thousands of Israelis to celebrate the holiday of Passover this week by invading the city. “
Israeli settlers, on Saturday, opened pepper spray on 11-year-old Qamar Qafisha, from Hebron, on Shuhada street in the city.
Ma’an reports: (Ma‘an) 26 Mar — Thousands of Palestinians on Thursday marched in the funeral of a young man who succumbed to his wounds the day before after being shot by Israeli forces during a protest near Ramallah last week. 20-year-old Ali Mahmoud Safi was buried in the al-Shuhada (Martyrs’) Cemetery in the al-Jalazun refugee camp north of Ramallah Thursday, as thousands mourned the first Palestinian youth to be killed in the camp so far this year.
IMEMC reports: Masked Israeli settlers from the illegal settlement of Ma’on, south of Hebron, threw stones at Palestinian children and injured a six-year-old child, Saturday.
AFP reports: President Barack Obama on Thursday warned Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu that Washington will “re-assess” its policies after the prime minister’s election win called into question crucial US diplomatic cover for Israel at the UN
In the closing hours of his political campaign, Benjamin Netanyahu announced his opposition to a Palestinian state and evoked Jewish fears of Palestinians outside and inside of the state of Israel. Netanyahu’s honesty caught the American Jewish leadership by surprise. It seems that Netanyahu compromised a special Jewish Occupation Code honed over many years. In essence, Netanyahu cast an unwelcome light on a thoroughly compromised American Jewish establishment that has enabled Israeli policies toward Palestinians for decades. Netanyahu stood up for injustice without apology. It’s time for Jewish leaders to tell us – without apology – where they stand.
Harriet Sherwood reports for The Guardian: “Senior UN officials in Jerusalem have been accused of caving in to Israeli pressure to abandon moves to include the state’s armed forces on a UN list of serious violators of children’s rights.”
Israeli soldiers shot and injured a 22-year-old Palestinian at an army checkpoint in Hebron. Meanwhile, Israeli forces detained a Palestinian from the Hebron area and summoned four more for interrogation.
In two separate incidents, groups of Israeli Jews celebrating Purim assaulted Palestinians, +972 Magazine reports.
Middle East Monitor reports: “The Israeli army on Saturday reduced fishing space off the coast of the Gaza Strip to four nautical miles from the six miles agreed on as part of last summer’s cease-fire agreement, Gaza’s fishermen’s union has said.”
Amira Hass reports for Haaretz: “Residents of Gaza who want to marry overseas are supposed to receive a permit in advance of the wedding date from the Defense Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces.”