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Today in Palestine

‘His only crime was that he’s not Jewish’: Israeli police caught on video attacking Palestinian in Tel Aviv

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Video of Israeli police attacking (Video: Ha'aretz/YouTube)

Off-duty Border Police officers in civilian clothes savagely assaulted a Palestinian supermarket worker in central Tel Aviv on Sunday after he refused to identify himself because he didn’t know who they were, according to eyewitnesses. “The blows were murderous, from the guy and from one of his friends. I’ve never seen anything like it. Teeth were flying through the air. The Arab was torn apart,” Erez Krispin, an eyewitness, wrote in a Facebook post.

Youth Against Settlements: Hebron closed military zone ended following activist campaign

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(Graphic: Youth Against Settlements)

Press release: “Youth Against Settlements is pleased to announce that the closed military zone orders in Hebron were not renewed today by the Israeli military. The Tel Rumeida neighborhood in Hebron had been under closed military zone orders since November 1, 2015 with the order having been renewed at 2-4 week intervals. Youth Against Settlements attributes (YAS) this success to the Open the Zone campaign that YAS and International Solidarity Movement (ISM) launched on May 3. The campaign involved video testimony of families and individuals living in the closed military zone describing the difficulties the closed military zone created for their lives. “

Israeli siege causes Gaza sewage crisis that now threatens Israel

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Sewage flows from an outlet into the sea in front of Shati refugee camp in Gaza City. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

AP reports: “Each day, millions of gallons of raw sewage pour into the Gaza Strip’s Mediterranean beachfront, spewing out of a metal pipe and turning miles of once-scenic coastline into a stagnant dead zone. The sewage has damaged Gaza’s limited fresh water supplies, decimated fishing zones, and after years of neglect, is now floating northward and affecting Israel as well, where a nearby desalination plant was forced to shut down, apparently due to pollution.”

UN agency says Israeli ban on cement preventing reconstruction in Gaza

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Palestinians walk an hour and a half from Gaza City to their homes in Shuja’iyeh during the ceasefire in order to collect personal items, July 25, 2014.. (Photo: Allison Deger)

Ma‘an reports, “Israel’s punitive ban on cement imports into the Gaza Strip has prevented hundreds of families from rebuilding their homes devastated by the 2014 war, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in a press release Thursday. As a result of the debilitating cement scarcity and price increases, ‘organizations providing assistance have had to suspend cash assistance for house repairs to over 1,370 families.'”

Israel closes crossing to Gaza for Passover

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Kerem Shalom Crossing  to Gaza (Photo: IDF Spokesperson)

Ma‘an reports, “Israeli authorities closed the Kerem Shalom crossing between the Gaza Strip and Israel from Thursday for the end of the Jewish holiday of Passover. Head of the PA’s Crossings and Border Department, Nathmi Mhanna, told Ma‘an the crossing would be sealed until Sunday with the exception of fuel entering the besieged enclave.”

Israel destroys Bedouin village al-Araqib for the 97th time

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Al-Araqib, an unrecognized village of the Al-Turi Arab Bedouin tribe (8 km north of Beersheba), being demolished for the 54th time in August 2013. (Photo: Eloise Bollack)

Israeli forces on Tuesday destroyed the unrecognized Bedouin community of al-Araqib in the Negev for the 97th time, amid a record-high wave of demolitions to be carried out by Israel this year. Al-Araqib resident Salim Abu Mdeighem told Ma‘an News that riot police from Israel’s Yasam unit raided the community before securing the entrance of two bulldozers that carried out the demolitions.

Israel demolishes children’s playground near Nablus

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The Israeli army flattened  the Za'atara park within a few minutes. It was the only place for children to play in the town of Beita, south of Nablus.
(Photo: The Palestinian Information Center)

Israeli forces on Tuesday demolished a children’s playground near Nablus amid a mass escalation in demolitions across the occupied territories. A PA official who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank told Ma‘an that Israeli authorities gave no prior notice before demolishing the park, which was built last year with around $60,000 donated by Belgium.

Palestinians mark 68th anniversary of Deir Yassin massacre

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Ruins of homes left empty from the Deir Yassin Massacre, 1986. (Photo: deiryassinremembered.org)

Palestinians on Saturday marked the 68th anniversary of the massacre of more than 100 Palestinian civilians carried out by Zionist paramilitary groups in the village of Deir Yassin in 1948 prior to the establishment of Israel. Deir Yassin has long been a symbol of Israeli violence for Palestinians because of the particularly gruesome nature of the slaughter, which targeted men, women, children, and the elderly in the small village west of Jerusalem.

Netanyahu defends Israeli military after soldier caught on tape executing Palestinian: ‘Any challenge to the morality of the IDF is outrageous’

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Benjamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended the Israeli army Sunday as controversy gripped the country over a soldier caught on video shooting a Palestinian in the head as he lay on the ground: “Any challenge to the morality of the IDF is outrageous and unacceptable. The soldiers of the IDF, our children, maintain high ethical values while courageously fighting against bloodthirsty murderers under difficult operational conditions.”

During Purim celebration, Israeli settlers use Ibrahimi Mosque loudspeaker to sing racist songs and call for expulsion of ‘Arabs’ from Hebron

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Ibrahimi Mosque (Photo: Wikimedia)

Hundreds of Israelis converged on religious sites across the occupied West Bank on Wednesday morning ahead of the Jewish holiday of Purim, in visits Palestinians condemned as “provocative.” In Hebron, Israeli settlers as well as other right-wing Israelis held celebrations in the Old City’s Ibrahimi Mosque. Locals told Ma‘an News that during the celebrations, which began late Tuesday, the settlers “provocatively” used the mosque’s loudspeakers “to sing racist songs that call for the expulsion of ‘Arabs’ from Hebron.”

Advocacy group accuses Israel of ‘misusing’ crowd control weapons against children

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Mamdouh Mahyoub Sorour, 16, receiving medical care for a head wound from a rubber-coated metal bullet. (Photo: Defense for Children International Palestine)

“The improper use of crowd control weapons against children must end immediately,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, Accountability Program director at Defense for Children International-Palestine. “Israeli soldiers who aim crowd control weapons at children’s heads and upper bodies at close range must be held accountable for their actions.”

Israel arrests Hebron activist for ‘incitement’ following ‘Open Al-Shuhada Street’ campaign

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Issa el Amro (Photo by Abed al Qaisi)

Israeli forces, Monday, once again abducted the coordinator for the Youth Against Settlements (YAS) movement, Issa Amr, after storming the organization’s headquarters in Hebron’s Old City. Mohammad Azghir, a spokesman for YAS, said that forces accused Amr of incitement against Israel. According to Azghir, Amr’s arrest indicates the military’s intentional target on Palestinian popular resistance and its activists in Hebron, especially after the Open Al-Shuhada Street Campaign.

Israel returns body of Palestinian to his family 65 days after he was killed by soldiers in Jerusalem

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Musab Mahmoud al-Ghazali (Photo: Ma'an News)

Israeli intelligence handed over the body of Musab Mahmoud al-Ghazali to the Palestinians on Sunday night, 65 days after he was killed by Israeli soldiers in Jerusalem, for him to be buried. Al-Ghazali, a 26-year-old Palestinian from the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, was shot dead on Dec. 26 after Israeli police say he pulled a knife on an officer in Allenby Square in Jerusalem. However, a witness on the scene said that al-Ghazali had not been holding a knife when he was killed.

British Prime Minister David Cameron calls Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem ‘genuinely shocking’

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David Cameron

Prime Minister David Cameron said that though he was a strong supporter of Israel, he had been taken aback by what had seen first hands on visits to the occupied territories in Jerusalem. “I am well-known as being a strong friend of Israel but I have to say the first time I visited Jerusalem and had a proper tour around that wonderful city and saw what has happened with the effective encirclement of East Jerusalem – occupied East Jerusalem – it is genuinely shocking,” he told MPs in the House of Commons.

Israel demolishes only elementary school for Bedouin community in Jerusalem

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Israeli forces demolished a Bedouin school for children in the Abu al-Nuwaar community near the town of al-Eizariya in the occupied West Bank, a spokesperson for the al-Jahalin Bedouin community said. (Photo: Ma'an News)

Israeli bulldozers predawn Sunday demolished an elementary school and seized all its contents in Abu al-Nawwar Bedouin community, east of Jerusalem, according to one of the Bedouin locals. In addition, Israel has razed over 200 EU-funded buildings in the West Bank in the past two years. This year alone around 480 people, including 220 children, have been left homeless.

Six Palestinians killed by Israeli forces over the weekend

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Relatives of Palestinian Nihad Waked who was shot dead by Israeli security forces as they reported fired on Israeli soldiers mourn during their funeral on February 14, 2016 in the village of Araka, West of Jenin in the Israeli occupied West Bank. (Photo: Nedal Eshtayah/APA Images)

Two Palestinians were killed on Sunday evening while exchanging fire with Israeli soldiers and police officers near the light-rail station in the Bab al-‘Amoud area in occupied Jerusalem. Their deaths bring the number of Palestinians killed on Sunday to five. Kilzar al-Uweiwi, 18, was killed by Israeli soldiers in Hebron on Saturday after stabbing an Israeli soldier and a Palestinian bystander near the Ibrahimi Mosque.

Israeli forces invade West Bank village after Palestinians kill police officer in Jerusalem

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A Palestinian protester throws a molotov cocktail at Israeli security forces during clashes in Qabatiya, a town near Jenin in the north of the Israeli-occupied West Bank, on February 4, 2016. Israeli forces locked down Qabatiya that was home to Palestinians who killed a policewoman and wounded another in Jerusalem, an attack analysts called an escalation after months of violence. (Photo: Nedal Eshtayah/ APA Images)

Israeli forces stormed the northern occupied West Bank district of Jenin’s Qabatiya village, the home of three Palestinian youths who were shot dead Wednesday after killing one 19-year-old Israeli police officer and seriously injuring another, a PLO spokesman told Ma‘an. Ali Zakarneh said that during the raid, Israeli forces shot and injured four youths with live bullets, one of whom is in critical condition after being shot in the head.

Israeli govt accelerates settlement construction, ‘opposition leader’ Isaac Herzog calls for electrified fence between Israel and West Bank

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Isaac Herzog

“Opposition leader” Isaac Herzog posts on Facebook setting out his vision for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: “Why [doesn’t the Netanyahu government] implement an effective separation? Why don’t they erect a wall? What’s the point of a fence if one can hop over or crawl under it? We don’t need a livestock fence. We need real separation that will truly block the terrorists. We can erect a real fence, topped with electrified barbed wire, one that can’t be traversed. Any weaker solution is wantonness that this government is responsible for. We need a fence that’ll deter murderers and defend civilians. We can do that and defend our civilians from terrorism and murder. That’s part of my separation plan.”