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Israeli authorities reveal they lost the bodies of seven Palestinians killed in the second Intifada

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Ma’an News Agency reports, “The Israeli government has admitted to losing the remains of seven Palestinians who were killed while ‘committing attacks’ against Israelis during the Second Intifada, Israeli news daily Haaretz reported on Monday. According to Haaretz, the admission came from the Israeli state prosecutor’s office in response to petitions to Israel’s Supreme Court filed by the slain Palestinians’ families, demanding the return of the bodies. During a Supreme Court session last month, it was revealed that the number of Palestinians whose burial places are unknown is far higher than the seven that Israel has admitted to losing. Haaretz quoted Israeli prosecutors as saying that as of 2015, out of 123 petitions submitted by Palestinian families, only two bodies had been located.”

In a first, Israeli police refuse permit for Palestinian ‘March of Return’

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Jonathan Cook reports the Palestinian commemoration of the Nakba in the Galilee may not be held for first time in 20 years, “The annual “March of Return” by Palestinians in Israel, commemorating the Nakba – the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes in 1948, has been blocked by the Israeli police for the first time in its history. The police have denied the organisers a permit, saying there is a shortage of officers to oversee the march. But Palestinian leaders in Israel accuse the far-right government of Benjamin Netanyahu of being behind the decision, in what they believe is the latest move to silence their commemoration of the events of 69 years ago.”

Israeli police kill 17-year-old suspect rather than arrest him

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Ahmad Zahir Fathi Ghazal, 17, from Nablus was shot and killed by Israeli forces in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City on Saturday, after he carried out a stab attack that left three Israelis lightly injured, with witnesses asserting Israeli police could have easily detained the boy without killing him.

Palestinian college student on hunger strike after 22 days of interrogation in an Israeli prison

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Palestinian university student Kifah Quzmar, in his final year studying business administration at Bir Zeit University, launched a hunger strike on Sunday, March 26 in Ashkelon prison, where he is held shackled and remains under interrogation after 22 days of imprisonment. Quzmar, a popular, well-known student, was seized by Israeli occupation forces on March 7 at the Karameh/Allenby crossing from Jordan as he returned from travel. After denying that he was in their custody for several days, he was then denied access to a lawyer for 19 days.

Hamas shuts down Gaza crossing, blaming Israel for assassinating leader

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Ma’an News Agency reports, “The Hamas-run Ministry of Interior in Gaza closed the Palestinian side of the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing between the Gaza Strip and Israel on Sunday morning, denying residents of the besieged coastal enclave passage in both directions, as local sources described a ‘state of alert’ in Gaza with severe security measures being imposed across the small Palestinian territory.”

Rasmea Odeh accepts plea deal, loses US citizenship in exchange for no jail time, will leave the US

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The Rasmea Defense Committee announced yesterday Palestinian activist Rasmea Odeh, “has made the difficult decision to accept a plea agreement. She will plead guilty to Unlawful Procurement of Naturalization, lose her U.S. citizenship, and be forced to leave the country, but will exit the U.S. without having to serve any more time in prison or ICE detention, a victory, considering that the government had earlier fought for a sentence of 5-7 years.”

Israel arrests 18 Palestinian members of a WhatsApp religious chat group

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Ma’an News Agency reports: “Israeli forces have detained 18 Palestinians from occupied East Jerusalem and West Bank for being in a WhatsApp group with a Palestinian who was killed by Israeli forces on Monday [near the Lion’s Gate to the Al-Aqsa Mosque] after allegedly carrying out a stabbing attack. Israeli police spokeswoman Luba al-Samri said in a statement on Sunday that the detained were all members of a group called “Road to heaven” on the messaging application, which she said was used to share religious messages.”

Israeli lawmakers advance bill to ban Muslim call to prayer

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In a hotly contested session of Knesset, Israeli lawmakers passed the first reading of a bill to ban the Muslim call to prayer, sparking Arab representatives to walk-out mid-session. Al Jazeera reports, “A law to muffle mosques’ amplified calls to prayer in Israel and occupied East Jerusalem won preliminary approval on Wednesday in a charged parliamentary session where Palestinian legislators denounced the measure as racist. The bill passed a preliminary reading with 55 votes in favour and 48 against as the assembly broke out into chaotic arguments.”

Trump’s pick for amb. to Israel funded settlements in Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter

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Haaretz reports Trump’s pick for U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman has a “leadership role in an organization that raises funds for the West Bank settlement of Beit El [that] is frequently cited as grounds for disqualifying him from becoming U.S. ambassador to Israel. It now emerges that Friedman’s financial ties to the settlement movement run deeper than Beit El. Friedman has also made contributions over the years to Ateret Cohanim, a right-wing organization that buys land in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City and Arab East Jerusalem for creating a ‘Jewish presence’ there.”

‘All the houses received [demolition] orders’: Israel to destroy entire Bedouin village in the West Bank

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Haaretz reports: The IDF’s Civil Administration in the West Bank on Sunday distributed some 40 demolition orders in a Bedouin village in Area C, which is under full Israeli civil and military control. Residents say the issuing of dozens of demolition orders is unprecedented in the area. “All the houses received [demolition] orders,” A’id Khamis Jahalin, a local resident, told Haaretz. “I’m scared. This time is different. Then they gave one [demolition order] or two, but such a blow, it’s something. They gave 42 orders. They gave for everything, there are no structures here in all the area that didn’t receive an order. I spoke with our lawyer, they gave us up to five days [to object], that’s a short time,” said Jahalin. Israeli authorities confirmed that such a widespread issuance of demolition orders was unprecedented in the area, and this is a declaration of intention in advance of an attempt to evacuate the entire village.

Elderly father of slain Palestinian dies ‘of shock’ in Umm al-Hiran

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The 100-year old father of Yacoub Abu al-Qee‘an [or al-Qi‘an] died Thursday morning after succumbing to shock over the death of his son, who was killed by Israeli police while defending his village of Umm al-Hiran from eviction. Israeli authorities are in the process of razing and expelling the Palestinian-Bedouin residents of Umm al-Hiran, in order to establish a Jewish-Israeli community in the same location.