Violence / Detentions — West Bank / Jerusalem
Palestinian teen dies from wounds suffered on November 14 in Jerusalem
IMEMC 20 Nov — A Palestinian teenage boy died, Tuesday, from serious wounds he suffered on, Wednesday November 14, 2018, allegedly after attempting to stab Israeli officers at a police station in occupied East Jerusalem. The Palestinian, identified as Abdul-Rahman Ali Abu Jamal, 17, from Jabal al-Mokabber, allegedly climbed the fence of a police station, and attacked the officers stationed there. An Israeli policewoman shot Jamal multiple times at the police station, which was built on Palestinian lands in Jabal al-Mokabber, seriously wounding him, and causing minor injuries to another police officer. Abu Jamal was moved to Shaare Zedek Medical Center, in Jerusalem, and remained in a critical condition until he succumbed to his wounds….
Critically injured Palestinian among others shot by Israeli forces
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 19 Nov — Four Palestinian youths were shot and injured by Israeli live ammunition, on late Sunday evening, in the village of Deir Abu Mash‘al, in the central occupied West Bank district of Ramallah. Locals told Ma‘an that Israeli forces opened fire at a Palestinian vehicle passing by, injuring for Palestinian passengers. The Palestinian Ministry of Health confirmed that the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) medical crews transferred four injured Palestinians to a nearby hospital. The ministry added that one of the four was shot and critically injured in the leg, while the other three suffered minor injuries.
Palestinians and Internationals attacked with gunfire in Mazra‘a al-Qibliya
RAMALLAH 19 Nov by ISM, Ramallah Team — Investigating a reported settler attack on a home outside of Mazra‘a al-Qibliya, the residents, along with ourselves, were attacked by a settler on horseback on [Sunday] the 18th November. The settler began by intruding on the property and brandishing a handgun. The residents responded by throwing stones, as the settler circled, firing seven shots over the course of five minutes. My colleagues and I ducked as the last three bullets whizzed past our heads. Before the initial attack, we interviewed the villagers about an assault on their property, in which they described about twelve settlers coming in the middle of the night, armed with rifles, firing shots in the air, while vandalizing various parts of their property. Near the house, we found all of their water tanks punctured by stab marks, fencing around the property ripped from the perimeter, and their television’s satellite dish destroyed. Further out in the courtyard were more signs of damage, including attempted arson … Their property sits less than two kilometers away from two Israeli settlements, and one outpost, including the settlement Kem A’erm, where the attackers reside.
[VIDEO] Settler shooting at Palestinians and internationals
Journalists syndicate condemns assault on international march
IMEMC/Agencies 18 Nov — The Palestinian Journalists Society (PJS) strongly condemned the suppression of the march of International Federation of Journalists towards Qalandia checkpoint, by Israeli occupation forces, through intensive use of toxic tear gas and sound bombs, which caused the injury of the PJS president Nasse Abu Baker, by a tear gas bomb that targeted his shoulder and caused many others to choke. One of the victims, journalist Adriana Hurtado, Colombian member of executive committee of International Federation of Journalists, and colleague journalist Manal Khamis, a PJS board member, needed to be transferred to a medical clinic. PJS has considered the brutal assault against the march, which had been announced prior to entering Jerusalem with international press identification and the participation of the president of IFJ, as a clear aggression against all world’s journalists, a disrespect of all international conventions and treaties, and a clear violation of journalists’ right to work and move freely in all occupied Palestinian territories, including Jerusalem….
Israeli forces run over Palestinian youth in Hebron
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 22 Nov — A 21-year-old Palestinian was run over by an Israeli army vehicle as he attempted to cross a road, on Thursday, in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron. The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said that the Palestinian, who was identified as Rashed Abu Aram, 21, was injured and transferred to a hospital to receive medical treatment. PRCS confirmed that Abu Aram suffered moderate injuries. Israeli forces along with military vehicles stormed Hebron City earlier and roamed through the streets.
Israeli settlers attack Palestinian homes near Nablus
NABLUS (Ma‘an) 19 Nov — Israeli settlers attacked a number of Palestinians homes, on Monday, in the ‘Urif village, [in the] south of the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus. Ghassan Daghlas, an official who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma‘an that a group of Israeli settlers from the illegal Israeli settlement of Yitzhar attacked a Palestinian neighborhood east of the ‘Urif village. Daghlas said that Israeli settlers attempted setting an agricultural vehicle on fire and threw rocks at Palestinian homes in the village. The attacked homes belonged to Samir Hashash, Ahmad Shihade, and Mounir al-Nawari. Daghlas mentioned that the local security committee forced the Israeli settlers to withdraw from the village before carrying out more attacks towards the residents.
15 injured as Israeli forces suppress olive-planting event in Nablus village
NABLUS (Ma‘an) 17 Nov — At least 15 Palestinians were injured during clashes with Israeli forces in the ‘Urif village, in southern Nablus of the northern occupied West Bank, on Saturday afternoon. Witnesses told a Ma‘an reporter that Israeli soldiers fired dozens of tear-gas bombs and stun grenades towards hundreds of Palestinians who were planting hundreds of olive trees in the eastern area of ‘Urif. The olive-planting event was organized in areas threatened with confiscated by the Israeli authorities, upon call by the Fatah movement and the local ‘Urif committee against the separation wall and settlement. Sources from the Palestinian Red Crescent told Ma‘an that PRC crews treated more than 15 Palestinians during clashes that erupted as Israeli forces suppressed the event, including two critical injuries.
Colonialist settlers attack West Bank farmers
IMEMC/Agencies 17 Nov — Israeli settlers, on Saturday, reportedly attacked a Palestinian farmer, along with his family, while they were picking olives in the Jabal Jales area, to the east of Hebron city, in the occupied West Bank. Local resident Rashed al-Tamini, who was picking olives with his family, said that settlers from a nearby illegal Israeli settlement attacked them with stones, spreading panic among them, including the children. No injuries were reported, according to WAFA. Almost a few days ago, settlers destroyed and uprooted fully grown olive trees belonging to al-Tamimi family, in the same area.
Palestinian suffers severe facial injuries during Ras Karkar protest
IMEMC/Agencies 16 Nov — Israeli forces suppressed Palestinians and activists protesting near the village of Ras Karkar, west of Ramallah, in the occupied central West Bank, on Friday, against the Israeli plan to seize hundreds of dunams of land in the area. Locals reported, according to Ma‘an, that Israeli soldiers fired rubber-coated steel bullets and tear-gas bombs to suppress protesters; one Palestinian was injured with a rubber-coated steel bullet in the face; he was transferred to the Palestine Medical Center for treatment. Many other protesters suffered tear-gas inhalation. Protesters had performed Friday prayers on lands threatened with seizure.
Illegal Israeli colonists attack a Palestinian ambulance in Hebron
IMEMC 18 Nov — A group of extremist illegal Israeli colonists attacked, Sunday, a Palestinian ambulance while rushing to a patient in Hebron city, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank, causing damage. The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) has reported that it received a call from a family of a patient in Tal Romeida neighborhood, in Hebron city, and headed towards the Shuhada Street, after coordinating the ambulance’s passage through the closed Shuhada Street. It added that, once the ambulance reached the Shuhada Street, the illegal settlers started throwing stones at it, and obstructed the road, although it was sounding its siren and trying to reach the patient … Mohammad Zghayyar, a spokesperson with the Youth Coalition against Settlements in Hebron, said that the coalition activists, along with internationals, witnessed at least fifteen illegal Israeli colonialist settlers attacking the ambulance and closing the road….
Palestinian stabbing attack suspect turns himself in
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 21 Nov — Israeli forces confirmed that the Palestinian stabbing attack suspect turned himself in, on Tuesday, near the checkpoint 300, located north of Bethlehem City, in the southern occupied West Bank. On Tuesday, a 35-year-old Israeli settler was injured after a Palestinian allegedly carried out a stabbing attack in Beit Jala, adjacent to Bethlehem City. Hebrew-language news outlets reported that the Palestinian, allegedly in his twenties, from Dheisheh refugee camp, was taken by Israeli forces for interrogation. Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem said that the Israeli settler who was injured by the Palestinian was transferred to the hospital and received medical treatment. He was later released.
Israeli soldiers abduct two teenage boys near Bethlehem
IMEMC 21 Nov — Several Israeli military jeeps invaded, on Wednesday at dawn, Beit Fajjar town, south of the West Bank city of Bethlehem, and abducted two teenage boys from their homes, including one who is recovering from surgery. Media sources said the soldiers invaded and violently searched homes in the town, after surrounding it, and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards. They added that the soldiers abducted Amir Morad Taqatqa, 16, and Mohammad Adel Taqatqa, 16, and took them to the nearby Etzion military base and security center, south of Bethlehem. It is worth mentioning that Amir underwent surgery just two days earlier, and was still recovering at home when the soldiers abducted him….
PPS: ‘Israeli soldiers abduct 21 Palestinians in West Bank’
IMEMC 22 Nov — The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported that Israeli soldiers abducted, overnight until morning hours Thursday, 21 Palestinians from their homes, and illegally confiscated money from many homes, in several parts of the occupied West Bank. In occupied Jerusalem, the soldiers abducted four young men, after stopping a car that was transporting them in Jabal al-Mokabber. The PPS said the soldiers assaulted the four young Palestinian men while examining their ID cards, before abducting them. They have been identified as Mohammad ‘Oweisat, Ahmad ‘Oweisat, Mo‘tasem ‘Allan and Mo‘taz ‘Allan; they were moved to an interrogation facility in the city. In Hebron, in the southern part of the West Bank, the soldiers abducted a former political prisoner, identified as Saed Abdul-Raman Zama‘ra, in addition to Yahia Issa Zama‘ra, after storming their homes and ransacking them. The soldiers also installed many roadblocks on roads leading to various cities, towns and refugee camps, in Hebron, before stopping and searching dozens of cars, and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards. In Tulkarem, in northern West Bank, the soldiers searched many homes in ‘Ellar town, north of the city, and abducted Ehab Hosni, Salah Hijazi, Mo‘taz Za‘rour, Mohammad Abu Sa‘ada, Nihad Jazzar and Fa‘eq Kharouf. Eyewitnesses said the soldiers wired and detonated the doors of many homes in the town, before breaking into them … In related news, the soldiers illegally confiscated thousands of Shekels from the homes of several political prisoners, after invading them, and alleged locating weapons during searches in Hebron Governorate, in southern West Bank.
Indictment / Sentencing
Palestinian indicted for planning attacks on right-wing activists
Times of Israel 16 Nov by Jacob Magid & TOI staff — Military prosecutors have charged a resident of the West Bank city of Qalqilya with conspiring to murder two right-wing Israeli activists, the IDF said Friday. According to the statement released by the military, Amid Ayoub Fawzi Zamari contacted a Gaza resident in July and sent him identifying details about Daniella Weiss and Moshe Zar in order for him to carry out a terror attack against the two … Weiss is a right-wing activist and former mayor of the settlement of Kedumim. A public supporter of the notorious hilltop youth who live in West Bank outposts, Weiss has in the past been arrested on a number of occasions for assaulting police officers.…
Palestinian activist sent to prison for riding a bike in his village
+972 mag 14 Nov by Oren Ziv — An Israeli military court sentenced renowned Palestinian activist Abdullah Abu Rahma to four months in prison on Wednesday, for two charges stemming from a bicycle race to mark Nakba Day in 2016. Abu Rahma, one of the most well-known leaders of the popular struggle against the separation wall, was convicted several weeks ago of violating a closed military zone order and obstructing a soldier during a race in May 2016 in Bil‘in, where he is from. Hundreds of Palestinian and international cyclists participated in the so-called “return ride,” which kicked off in Ramallah and ended in the West Bank village. Israeli security forces raided the village before the race even began, however. Abu Rahma was arrested while trying to explain to the soldiers that they were on his land. He was thrown to the ground, arrested, and held in detention for 11 days….
Jerusalem governor banned from interaction with Palestinian officials
IMEMC/Agencies 23 Nov — The central commander of the Israeli army issued an order, on Thursday, banning the Palestinian governor of Jerusalem, Adnan Ghaith, from interacting with a number of Palestinian officials, according to WAFA correspondence. Under the order, Ghaith must not interact or directly or indirectly communicate with a listed set of Palestinian government officials, most of them based in the occupied West Bank. This comes two weeks after Israeli occupation authorities issued an order banning him from entering the West Bank for six months.
Israeli Supreme Court rules to evict 40 Palestinians in Jerusalem
IMEMC 19 Nov by Celine Hagbard — 40 Palestinian family members will be forced into homelessness, following an Israeli Supreme Court decision to evict them from their homes. The ruling also sets a precedent that will likely result in the evictions of hundreds more Palestinians in a neighborhood that Israeli authorities have designated for ‘Jewish-only’ settlements as part of the E1 Jerusalem plan. The Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, according to +972 Magazine, is a Palestinian neighborhood in East Jerusalem, located on the slopes of Mount Scopus, home to about 3,000 residents. In the 19th century, a small Jewish community lived there, most of which left by 1948, as East Jerusalem came under Jordanian rule. In 1956, 28 Palestinian families who were made refugees from West Jerusalem in the 1948 war were settled there through an agreement reached between Jordan and UNRWA. In recent years, several of these families were evicted as a result of Israeli court decisions to recognize pre-1948 ownership claims made by two Jewish bodies, the Sephardic Community Committee and the Knesset Israel Committee, which enabled Jewish settlers to move into their homes immediately. Although implemented according to Israeli legal and justice systems, the move set a political double standard that justifies Jewish claims to property held before 1948, but does not allow Palestinians to make similar claims to properties they were forced to leave in West Jerusalem. This week’s Supreme Court decision denied the Sabag family’s appeal of the eviction order filed against them by the Israeli authorities in Jerusalem….
Evacuation of 700 Jerusalemites from Silwan approved by Israeli court
IMEMC/Agencies 23 Nov — In direct contradiction of the Geneva Conventions, the Israeli Supreme Court has approved the evacuation of 700 Jerusalemite Palestinians from their homes in the Silwan neighborhood of east occupied Jerusalem, Makan Israeli Broadcasting Corporation informed. It explained, according to Al Ray, that the Israeli Supreme Court rejected, on Wednesday evening, a petition filed by 104 Jerusalemites from Silwan , and allowed the Ateret Cohanim association to evict the 51 Palestinian families living in the heart of Silwan. Ateret Cohanim plans to expropriate 5 dunams and 200 square meters in the Silwan neighborhood. Starting on September 15, 2015, 84 families from the neighborhood, which received evacuation notices, headed to the Israeli Supreme Court. The families explained, in their petition, that the lands are public domain lands, and that Israeli association is not entitled to put hand on it. Haaretz reported that it is not a private property dispute between the families and the landowners. The eviction efforts are a clear manifestation of Israel’s policies toward Palestinians living in Jerusalem. It added that it must be remembered that the settlement project in the heart of Silwan is bound to fail. Settlement efforts, there, have been ongoing for more than 25 years. Hundreds of millions of shekels have been poured into it, and it has had the sweeping support of successive governments. Nonetheless, as in Hebron, the settlers remain a tiny minority, a minuscule percentage of the population.
PLO condemns Israel’s demolition campaign in East Jerusalem
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 21 Nov — Ahmad Abu Holy, the head of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLO) refugee department, accused the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem of waging a war on the Shu‘fat refugee camp with the demolition of 20 Palestinian shops “under the illegal pretext of building without a permit.” … Abu Holy said in a statement, “The Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem intended to change the character of the camp as part of former West Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat’s plan to end the status of the camp as a refugee camp as part of a bigger plan to end the presence of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in Jerusalem and to shut down all its services.” He said that “the municipality cancelled the name of the camp as Shufat refugee camp, which has a population of 21,000 Palestinian residents who carry the Jerusalem Israeli identity card, and named it the town of Shufat, which means it will be supervised by the city and falls under its laws and regulations, rather than under UNRWA supervision as the case with all Palestinian refugee camps in the occupied territories and outside them.” Abu Holy stressed this would mean “changing the status of the camp’s refugees from refugees to non-refugees,” which means “they will be subject to municipality laws and have to pay high taxes on their shops and homes, in order to force them to leave it and move to the occupied West Bank.” Abu Holy said that changing the status of the Shufat camp’s refugees is part of Israel’s demographic war against the Palestinians, intended to reduce their number in Jerusalem, while multiplying the number of Jews through the construction of illegal Israeli settlements.”
Pictures: Demolishing commercial establishments in the villages of Jabal al-Mukabber and Silwan
Silwanic 19 Nov –The Nature and Park Authority along with municipal employees carried out a demolition operation against commercial establishments in the villages of Jabal Al-Mukabber and Silwan under the pretext of building without a permit. Wadi Hilweh Information Center said that the occupation’s bulldozers accompanied by the police and the special units stormed a land belonging to Khaled Al-Zeer in Abbasyeh neighborhood in Silwan, and proceeded to raze it and confiscate its contents including a commercial vehicle and a canopy. The center added that the Israeli occupation authorities confiscated several vehicles under the pretext of “expired registration”. In Al-Sal’a area, Israeli bulldozers demolished a sandwiches canteen and a storage built from iron and steel belonging to Eyad Ja’afra, standing in front of his shop. In the village of Jabal Al-Mukabber, the bulldozers demolished commercial facilities consisting of 45 square meters of warehouses and 80 square meters of offices belonging to the Surri family. The bulldozers destroyed the land. The bulldozers also demolished a barracks used for carwash services for Muhtaseb family, and another carwash for Obeidat family. The families explained that the Israeli authorities carried out the demolition, razing and confiscation without prior warning, and some of them had gone to the competent authorities to license the facilities, but were surprised today by the demolition.
Knesset approves colonialist constructions in Silwan
IMEMC 20 Nov — The Israeli Knesset approved, Monday, the construction of residential units for colonialist settlers, in Silwan town, south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, in occupied East Jerusalem, in the area that Israel has termed “The City of David National Park.” Media sources said 63 Knesset members approved the plan, while 41 others voted against it. The constructions are in Silwan Palestinian town, which is subject to ongoing illegal annexation of its lands, homes and property, in addition to frequent demolition of homes. The “City Of David” colonialist project is part of the larger plan which include the Old City of Jerusalem, and various Palestinian areas near its walls, where more than 100.000 indigenous Palestinians reside. Israel initially claimed that the “City Of David” project would be a national park and facilities, with no residential components, but is now approving housing units of the illegal colonialist settlers. It is worth mentioning that the Elad colonialist organization, which instigated this bill, has been pushing for the construction and expansion of colonies in occupied Jerusalem, especially in the heart of Palestinian neighborhoods and towns … On Tuesday, Israeli bulldozers dug and uprooted lands in Wadi ar-Rababa neighborhood in Silwan, and started preparing for terraced trenches, as part of the ongoing illegal colonialist activities.
Land, property theft & destruction / Ethnic cleansing / Settlements
Army seizes West Bank farmlands for ‘security reasons’
IMEMC/Agencies 15 Nov — The Israeli army seized, on Thursday, a plot of agricultural land amounting to 29 dunams, in an area that belongs to farmers in the village of Jalameh, east of Jenin, in the northern West Bank, under the pretext of “security reasons,” according to one of the landowners. Khaled Abu Farha, Jalameh’s former head of village council and a landowner, told WAFA that the army seized 29 dunams of village land in the vicinity of a military camp built near the village. He said that the land belongs to six families and to the Palestinian Industrial Estates & Free Zones Authority (PIEFZA). He refuted the army’s claim that the reason for the seizure of the land was security, stressing that the true reason is that this land is rich with gravel, cement, stone and sand, which Israel wants to put its hands on….
Israel razes Palestinian lands, uproots 500 palm trees in Jericho
JERICHO (Ma‘an) 20 Nov — Israeli bulldozers razed and leveled Palestinian-owned agricultural lands, and uprooted about 500 palm trees, on Tuesday, in Jericho City, near road 90, in the central occupied West Bank district of Jericho. Ibrahim Ahmad, the tenant of the razed lands, said that Israeli forces along with several bulldozers stormed the area and razed agricultural lands that belong to the Islamic Endowment (Waqf) Department. No reason was given for the razing and leveling of the lands. Ahmad added that Israeli bulldozers uprooted and seized about 500 palm trees from the lands. Ahmad also pointed out that despite an Israeli court ruling banning the razing of his lands, it is not the first time that Israeli forces had razed his lands and uprooted hundreds of trees.
West Bank court sentences two people to 15 years for selling land to Israelis
QALQILIYA (WAFA) 21 Nov – The First Instance Court in Qalqiliya in the north of the West Bank Wednesday sentenced two Palestinians to 15 years in prison with hard labor after convicting them of selling Palestinian land to Israelis. The two, from the village of Kafr Thuluth, were part of a ring of land dealers involved in attempting to sell lands in Jerusalem, Qalqiliya, Nablus, Tulkarm and inside Israel as well to Israelis in a deal that was supposed to have taken place last January. The Palestinian Preventive Security said on its website on Monday that its units were able to arrest four people, one of them a lawyer, suspected of plotting to sell land to Israeli parties. While the Israeli parties were not identified, they were assumed to be settlers. It said one of the people involved who was hiding in Israel and another a land dealer from inside Israel have conspired with the rest of the ring members to sell land worth over $10 million to Israelis. Palestinian law bans sale of land in the West Bank and Gaza to non-residents of Palestine without a prior approval from the Council of Ministers.
The former West Bank settler who says he wants to make Israel a better place
The JC 18 Nov by Ben Welch — Shabtay Bendet tells the JC why he now campaigns against West Bank settlements — There is a photo of Shabtay Bendet in a former life, taken some time around the turn of the century, smiling proudly in front of his West Bank home — an illegal shack, made of thin plaster and held up with two-by-fours. Things are different now … He initially turned to journalism to stop what he suddenly saw as an immoral expansion across Palestinian land, working as the West Bank correspondent for the Israeli news site Walla!. But soon became dissatisfied with a life spent at the back of courtrooms and planning meetings. Instead, he is now the director of the settlement watch team at pressure group Peace Now, collecting data and keeping tabs on illegal communities popping up across the West Bank….
Israeli forces wound 25 Palestinians, including AP cameraman, in Gaza boat protest
IMEMC 20 Nov — The weekly protest at the Gaza beach to protest the ongoing Israeli closure of sea access to Gaza was met with violence from Israeli forces today, who fired live ammunition at protesters in boats and along the shore. 25 were wounded with live bullets, including an AP camera operator. The protest took place off the coast of Beit Lahia, in northern Gaza, when hundreds of Palestinians gathered on the shore and then took off in small fishing boats bearing Palestinian flags into the Mediterranean Sea. Almost immediately, the Israeli Naval ships stationed off the coast began firing live ammunition toward the protesters, according to local sources. The Israeli Navy also fired tear gas canisters, causing passengers on the boats to suffer from tear gas inhalation. One of the people wounded by the Israeli forces’ live ammunition was a camera operator working for the Associated Press (AP), [Rashed Rashid] who was shot in the foot. In a separate protest Monday along the Gaza-Israel border, a 13-year old boy was reportedly injured by live ammunition fired by Israeli forces, according to local sources …
The maritime protest has continued each Monday despite an announcement on November 3rd that Qatar and Israel had agreed to establish a sea passage between Cyprus and the Gaza Strip. At that time, the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported that the route would be monitored by international forces and under Israeli security supervision – including cameras, computer networking and the presence of international inspectors. But a few days after the agreement was announced, Israeli forces violated the ceasefire with an operation in Gaza in which they killed several Palestinians and one of their soldiers was also killed. That was followed by a series of Israeli airstrikes and Palestinian resistance fighters’ rocket attacks – leading to the breakdown of the ceasefire agreement. The plan for a maritime passage remains uncertain at this time, and the popular resistance in Gaza has vowed to continue its weekly non-violent challenge to the Israeli naval siege, despite being met each time with live ammunition from the Israeli naval forces.
Navy opens fire at fishing boats, army invades lands, in Gaza
IMEMC 20 Nov — Israeli navy ships opened fire, on Tuesday morning, at several Palestinian fishing boats, while the soldiers invaded agricultural lands, in the Gaza Strip. Media sources in Gaza said several armored military vehicles, stationed at Abu Safiya army base, across the perimeter fence, invaded farmlands, east of the al-Maghazi refugee camp, in central Gaza. They added that the army vehicles, including bulldozers, advanced nearly 100 meters into the lands, and bulldozed sections close to the fence. In addition, the Israeli navy ships fired many live rounds at fishing boats, in Palestinian territorial waters close to the shore, in the northern part of the coastal region.
Israeli incursions into Gaza are the rule, not the exception
+972 mag 13 Nov by Henriette Chacar — Israeli troops have crossed into Gaza over 70 times this year alone, according to the UN. And those are only the incursions we know about — Since Israeli special forces troops got into a deadly firefight with Hamas commandos deep inside the Gaza Strip Sunday night [11 November], Israel has dropped dozens of bombs and missiles into Gaza and Hamas has fired hundreds of rockets into Israel. The New York Times described the special forces raid as “the first known Israeli ground incursion into Gaza since Operation Protective Edge, in July 2014.” That couldn’t be further from the truth. Since the start of 2015 through the end of October 2018, the Israeli army made 262 known ground incursions and operations to level land inside the Gaza Strip, including over 70 this year alone. This does not include the unknown number of covert operations like the one that went awry on Sunday. As one retired Israeli general explained on national television, such covert raids across enemy lines are actually rather routine. “Activities that most civilians aren’t aware of happen all the time, every night and in every region,” Tal Russo told Israel’s Channel 10 while discussing the events in Gaza … What is exceptional about Sunday’s action is not that Israeli soldiers crossed into Gaza, but that the military operation was exposed….
Army injures a farmer in central Gaza
IMEMC 17 Nov — Israeli soldiers injured, on Saturday morning, a Palestinian farmer while working on his lands, east of the al-Maghazi refugee camp, in central Gaza. Eyewitnesses said the soldiers fired many live rounds at farmers in lands close to the perimeter fence of the besieged Gaza Strip, to force them out. They added that one Palestinian suffered a moderate injury, after the soldiers shot him with a live round in his leg, and was rushed to a local hospital. In related news, several army vehicles and bulldozers invaded Palestinian lands, east of Deir al-Balah, in central Gaza, and fired many live rounds to force the Palestinians away.
Israeli cabinet minister: Gaza leader’s days are numbered
JERUSALEM (AP) 21 Nov by Aron Heller — A senior Israeli Cabinet minister on Wednesday threatened to kill the leader of the militant Hamas movement ruling Gaza, vowing that another “large campaign” looms in which Israel will hit the militants hard. Housing Minister Yoav Gallant, a former military general who commanded the Gaza region, said Hamas leader Yehiyeh Sinwar should “recalculate his route” before the next engagement. “Yehiyeh Sinwar’s time is limited. He will not end his life in an old folks’ home,” he said, at the Jerusalem Post Diplomatic Conference. “He has to behave himself.” Israel and Hamas recently stepped back from the brink of their fourth war in a decade thanks to an Egyptian cease-fire … “We are now close to a no-choice war against Hamas in Gaza. We must strike hard to restore deterrence,” Intelligence Minister Israel Katz told the conference. “Any attack on Israeli soil must be met with a tough response … if Sinwar or (Hamas political chief Ismail) Haniyeh were to fire a bullet or a rocket at a soldier or Israeli citizens they will pay with their heads.” Israel assassinated Hamas leaders Ahmad Yassin and Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi in 2004, and tried to kill another leader, Khaled Mashaal, in 1997. The killing of senior members of the group has had no discernible impact on its operations or ideology … “Nobody wants war in Gaza now. It will be very damaging for everyone,” said Nickolay Mladenov, the U.N. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process. “I hope we can step back from this terrible cycle where every Friday we are wondering if we will go to war or not.”
Hamas released images of ‘Israeli fighters involved in Gaza raid’; IDF censors
Haaretz 22 Nov by Yaniv Kubovich — Hamas published images on Thursday that allegedly show the Israeli combat soldiers who took part in a botched special operation in the southern Gaza Strip last week. The office of the Israeli military censor issued a rare statement in which it asked not to publish the information distributed by Hamas. “Hamas is currently involved in an attempt to decipher and understand the event that took place deep in Gaza on November 11 and every piece of information, even if it is considered harmless by those publishing it is liable to endanger human lives and cause harm to the country’s security,” the statement read. A 41-year-old Israeli army officer was killed and another was moderately wounded during the November 11 operation in Khan Younis, which left seven Hamas members dead.
Botched Israeli operation in Gaza appears to have been an attempt to install wiretap, senior Hamas official says
Haaretz 18 Nov by Jack Khoury — The Israeli force exposed last week in Gaza was apparently planning to install a listening device, senior Hamad official Khalil al-Haya told the Hamas-run al-Aqsa television station Saturday. Al-Haya also suggested that the special forces were trying to “build something” in Khan Yunis, saying that Iz al-Din al-Qassam, Hamas’ military wing, was “there to block them.” Last week, an Israeli army lieutenant colonel was killed alongside seven Hamas militants, including a battalion commander, during an operation in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Yunis. According to al-Haya, the Israeli officer who died in the incident was shot early on in the fire exchange between the forces. “The Israeli enemy tried to score a security achievement in the Gaza Strip and thought the Strip was safe for it,” al-Haya said in the interview. “However,” he continued, “the time has come to prove to the enemy that entering Gaza is no field trip….
Ceasefire puts Qatar’s role in Gaza back in spotlight
GAZA CITY (PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES) (AFP) 21 Nov — At the end of a dirt track, an imposing new court complex stands as a symbol of Qatar’s investment in the Gaza Strip — back in the spotlight after a controversial ceasefire with Israel. The Palace of Justice’s construction in Gaza is only the latest project financed by Qatar, whose involvement in the Palestinian enclave contributed to an Israeli political crisis in recent days that almost brought down the government. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman resigned on November 14 over a ceasefire that ended the worst escalation between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza since a 2014 war. When announcing his resignation, he called the ceasefire “capitulating to terror,” but also criticized recent aid to the blockaded Gaza Strip from Qatar that was approved by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Earlier this month, Qatar delivered $15 million in suitcases to pay civil servants’ salaries in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, the first of six such planned payments for a total of $90 million. Qatar has also been providing Gaza with fuel deliveries — again, approved by Netanyahu — to ease a severe electricity shortage … “Qatar’s role in Gaza is of strategic importance to Israel as it allows the Jewish state to cooperate with Doha, while strengthening ties with an Arab Gulf state with whom it does not enjoy formal diplomatic relations,” said Sigurd Neubauer, a Middle East analyst based in Washington … Engagement in Gaza has been a crucial pillar of Qatari foreign policy for some time … “The Palestinian issue remains important for all countries that want to play a role in the region,” said Jamal al-Fadi, a political science professor in Gaza….
Israeli sources admit Hamas in possession of ‘game changing’ missiles
IMEMC/Agencies 18 Nov — An Israeli website known for its close links to the regime’s military intelligence services has admitted that the Palestinian resistance movement of Hamas is now possessing “game-changing” missiles that could hit targets in Israel with considerable ease and precision. The Debka file said, in a report on Saturday, that its sources had identified the type of modern missiles used by Hamas in recent attacks on the Israeli-occupied territories that inflicted considerable damage and casualties on the regime and forced the Israeli government to accept a ceasefire with the Palestinians. It said, according to Al Ray Palestinian Media Agency, that the missiles were of the 333mm-caliber type and had a medium range of 11 kilometers. The report added that the missiles were capable of destroying Israel’s “artillery emplacements, Iron Dome batteries, armored force concentrations – whether over ground or in trenches, as well as combat engineering equipment and command centers”. “It is not launched from stationary batteries, but from any combat 4×4 vehicle or jeep, each of which carries two rockets,” said the report, adding that the main advantage of the missiles was its mobility which allowed Hamas to fire them from any area in the Gaza Strip without Israeli radars noticing them….
Principal in trouble after expressing relief ‘only’ Arab killed by Gaza rocket
Times of Israel 19 Nov — Sdot Negev administrator to face hearing at ministry after celebratory WhatsApp message that man killed in Ashkelon was Palestinian — The principal posted a message to a WhatsApp group for teachers at the school saying “Thank God there are no deaths on our side. A real miracle. Yesterday’s barrage could’ve killed many more, God forbid,” Hadashot television news reported Monday. The report did not name him. Mahmoud Abu Asabeh, 48, from Halhul, a town near Hebron, was the only fatality on the Israeli side last week, as hundreds of rockets were fired at communities near the Gaza border … The message was originally reported by Hadashot last week. On Monday, the ministry said in a statement that “The Education Ministry regrets the remarks by the principal and stresses that these kind of statements have no place in a civilized society and certainly not in the education system.” Parents at the Maagalim school in the Sdot Negev region also condemned the comment and published a statement distancing themselves from it, saying they “reject the principal’s unfortunate comments. The Maagalim school champions equality and distances itself from racist comments.”….
Gaza families mourn loss of a generation as youth clamor to leave enclave
The National 21 Nov by Miriam Berger — “What am I going to miss about Gaza?” asks eighteen-year-old Majd Safi, who, like most everyone of his generation in Gaza, is set on getting out. “My friends,” he answers. “My family. I’m not going to miss the whole city. I hate Gaza actually.” Ahmed Safi, 30, who like his brother is also planning to start a life, finally, abroad, interjects. “You should not hate Gaza,” he says. “You will love Gaza when you leave Gaza.” “I hope so,” the younger brother concedes. Conversations like this are happening in homes across Gaza: After eleven years of Hamas’ repressive rule, the painful Palestinian split, and Israel’s deadly campaign of wars and siege, Gaza’s youth say they want none of this. They have no jobs, no money, and no vision for a future here, on top of the traumas of war and life under a corrupt and repressive government. “The difference between him and me is that he’s younger than me,” Ahmed tells The National. “And his mind is not full of memories in Gaza. So it’s easier for him to leave and live his life and future. But when you are talking with someone who’s 30 years old, he’s full of memories of his world, friends, families… so it’s going to be more difficult for me. I know I will miss every street. I will miss every face in Gaza.” After a pause, Majd adds, “I will miss my mother so much.”
Argument: Israel’s about-face on Gaza
Foreign Policy 21 Nov by Sandy Tolan — Netanyahu may be changing his mind about war. If he does, it will be thanks to an environmental and health disaster that threatens to cross the border — Last week’s cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, following an Israeli military incursion and retaliatory rocket fire from Gaza, may reflect an increasing awareness within Israel that war is not in the country’s self-interest. At the heart of the matter is Gaza’s mounting humanitarian disaster, which threatens to spill over the border. For months, the United Nations and other humanitarian groups have warned that Gaza—with its overlapping problems of poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, contaminated water, and disease—will be “unlivable” by 2020. The U.N., the World Bank, Save the Children, and other groups even cautioned that continued Israeli bombing and economic blockade could bring Gaza to a state of collapse, from which Israel would not be immune. Such warnings are nothing new. The difference now is that people at the center of power in Israel appear to be listening. Last Wednesday’s resignation of Israel’s hawkish defense minister, Avigdor Lieberman, who called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cease-fire deal a “capitulation to terrorism,” is instructive. Lieberman had insisted that the government “hit Hamas very hard.” Whereas his calls might once have been heeded, this time, they were ignored. In recent weeks, before signing the cease-fire, Netanyahu even eased Israel’s economic blockade of Gaza. Both moves signal an understanding that a fourth war is probably not the answer for the devastated Gaza Strip. At the heart of Gaza’s humanitarian crisis is contaminated water and a consequent rise in illness and disease, especially among children….
Smoke rises, sirens wail at Gaza’s recurrent protests
MALAKA, Gaza Strip (AP) 20 Nov by Todd Pitman — Atalla Fayoumi hobbles on crutches across the sunbaked plain near Israel’s perimeter fence in the Gaza Strip, gazing toward plumes of smoke that have begun rising from a clutch of burning tires in the distance. The 18-year-old Palestinian’s right leg was amputated after Israeli soldiers shot him here in April at one of the mass demonstrations against Israel’s long blockade of Gaza that are held every week. Yet he has kept returning to the protests — just like thousands of other desperate, unemployed men who feel they have nothing left to lose. Eight months after the demonstrations began, there appears to be no end to what has become a predictable routine that yields dozens of new casualties each week. Over the next few hours, Fayoumi knows the crowds will swell into the thousands. They’ll burn so many tires, the sky will turn black. They’ll attack the fence with stones and firebombs, Israeli gunfire will ring out, and Palestinian ambulance sirens will wail non-stop. By the time it is over, at least 80 Palestinians will be wounded and three will be dead. At sunset, Fayoumi and the others will abruptly turn around and walk home, while the Israelis will emerge from their positions and march the other way. In a week, like clockwork, they will be back, poised for the deadly ritual to start all over again … While most Gazans see the protests as the inevitable reaction to Israel’s siege, Israel has a different view altogether. “We don’t see them as protests … we’re not seeing somebody exercising their democratic right to gather and voice their opinion,” said Israeli military spokesman Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus. “We are confronting attacks, violent attacks along our security fence from an entity, Gaza, that is controlled by a terrorist organization, Hamas.” Since they began March 30, Israeli troops — using live ammunition against Palestinians mostly armed with rocks — have killed more than 170 people and shot nearly 6,000 others, among them scores of children. Thousands more have been wounded during the protests by tear gas or rubber-coated bullets. On the Israeli side, one soldier has been killed by a sniper and six others wounded….
Airbnb faces Israeli class-action lawsuit for delisting settlements
JERUSALEM (Reuters) 22 Nov by Ori Lewis — Lawyers launched a class action lawsuit in Israel on Thursday against Airbnb, accusing the company of “outrageous discrimination” and demanding monetary damages after it withdrew listings of Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. The San Francisco-based company said this week it was removing listings of around 200 homes in settlements after hearing criticism from people who “believe companies should not profit on lands where people have been displaced” … Palestinians who want to establish an independent state taking in the West Bank have welcomed Airbnb’s move. Most world powers view Israel’s construction of settlements on occupied Palestinian land as a violation of international law, and Palestinians say it is wrong for companies to profit from them….
Quakers in Britain to boycott companies ‘profiting from occupation’ of West Bank
Times of Israel 20 Nov by Stuart Winer — The Quakers in Britain faith group said Monday that it will no longer invest in any companies who profit from “the occupation of Palestine,” and urged others to follow its example. Britain’s official representative for the Jewish community, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, condemned “the appalling decision…to divest from just one country in the world – the only Jewish state,” and denounced the move as “a biased and petulant act.” The Quakers’ decision was made in coordination with the church’s trustees, the organization said in a statement, and “fits into a long Quaker history of pursuing ethical investments.”….
Canadian students federation endorses BDS, condemns Israeli ‘atrocities’ in Gaza
Sputnik 21 Nov — Canada’s largest student organization endorsed the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement on Monday, an international campaign to put economic pressure on the Israeli government to end its occupation of Palestinian land … The organization represents 530,000 Canadian students in 64 member unions across all 12 Canadian provinces…..
Palestinian refugees / UNRWA
Al-Malki: All Palestinians held in Thailand released
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 17 Nov — The Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Riyad al-Malki, said, Friday evening, that all Palestinian refugees who have been held by Thai authorities for overstaying their visas were freed. Al-Malki added that the Palestinians were freed after recent diplomatic efforts of the Palestinian foreign ministry and the Palestinian embassy in Malaysia. After the Thai authorities had arrested Palestinians seeking asylum in Thailand as they escaped the war and death in Syria, for overstaying their visas and kept them in overcrowded and dismal detention centers with criminals, drug traffickers and sex offenders, activists continuously organized campaigns in their support. Only a handful of Palestinians were among the refugees, who were estimated at 600, who fled Syria and came to Thailand as a first stop before seeking asylum elsewhere.
UNRWA says budget deficit slashed after Gulf, EU input
SWEIMEH (Jordan) (AFP) 19 Nov – The UN agency for Palestinian refugees said Monday that UNRWA has dramatically reduced its budget shortfall despite US funding cuts after Gulf and EU contributions. “You are all aware how difficult this year has been for UNRWA in particular following the unexpected decision by the US to cut $300 million this year of UNRWA’s income,” commissioner general Pierre Krahenbuhl told a news conference in Jordan. At the start of 2018, the UN agency faced a $446-million budget deficit, he said. But after mobilizing to tackle the unprecedented financial crisis caused by the US cuts, “we have now reduced the shortfall… to $21 million”, he added. “This is a very encouraging result at the end of a lot of work,” he told reporters after meeting with the agency’s advisory commission in Sweimeh on the Jordanian shore of the Dead Sea. Krahenbuhl thanked in particular Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Qatar, saying they had helped plug the deficit by contributing $50 million each….
Abbas signs accession papers to international conventions
IMEMC/Agencies 15 Nov — Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas signed, on Thursday, accession papers to a number of international organizations and conventions. According to Ma‘an, Abbas signed accession papers to 11 international organizations and conventions, which included the Universal Postal Union, the Convention on the Nationality of Married Women, the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women….
Palestinians protest social security law
RAMALLAH, occupied West Bank (Al Jazeera) 16 Nov by Jaclynn Ashly — Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have continued to protest against a controversial social security law, which came into effect at the start of the month. The latest of several demonstrations against the law was held in the city of Ramallah on Monday, where thousands of workers staged a sit-in outside the Palestinian government headquarters. “The government is not listening to our concerns,” said Jack Syriani, a worker at the Jerusalem School of Bethlehem and member of the National Social Security movement (NSSM), which has headed opposition to the law. “We wanted to modify this law, but the government has refused to hear our concerns. Now we want it cancelled completely,” he said. Others have called for the law to be frozen temporarily to allow for negotiations with the government. Opposition to the law ranges from concerns that monthly employee deductions will be unmanageable for workers, to fears over the long-term security of their contributions and the viability of the system under a military occupation….
Israel bans entry of senior Arab journalists to West Bank for key event
RAMALLAH (WAFA) 16 Nov – Israeli occupation authorities banned on Friday three top Arab media officials from entering the West Bank to participate in the “Journalism Under Fire” conference, scheduled to take place in Ramallah. Israeli border control at Al-Karamah (Allenby) border crossing, on the West Bank-Jordan border, stopped the head of the Tunisian Journalists’ Syndicate, Naji Al-Baghouri; Advisor to the Union of the Arab Journalists, Hashemi Nuweiri (Tunisian); and the Representative of the General Union of Arab Journalists, Abdullah Al-Bakali (Moroccan), and told them they were banned from entering the West Bank. The three were bound for Ramallah to take part in the “Journalism Under Fire” conference taking place in Ramallah on November 16-18.
UN special rapporteurs give Israel 60 days to respond to deep concerns regarding Jewish nation-state law
IMEMC/Agencies 17 Nov — Four Special Rapporteurs express ‘deep concern’ that the Nation-State Law is ‘discriminatory in nature and in practice against non-Jewish citizens and other minorities and does not apply the principle of equality between citizens, which is one of the key principles for democratic political systems.’ Following a special request for action issued by Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, four United Nations special rapporteurs have given Israel a 60-day deadline to respond to their grave concerns regarding the Jewish Nation-State Law, adopted by the Knesset on 19 July, 2018. The 60-day period began on 2 November….
Israeli minister says Trump peace plan a ‘waste of time’
JERUSALEM (AFP) 21 Nov — A senior Israeli minister said Wednesday that US President Donald Trump’s long-awaited plan for peace with the Palestinians was “a waste of time”. “I think that the gap between the Israelis and Palestinians is much too big to be bridged,” Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said at a conference organized by the Jerusalem Post newspaper. “I think personally it’s a waste of time,” she said when asked what she thought about the peace initiative Trump is expected to unveil in the weeks or months ahead. Shaked is part of the far-right Jewish Home party, a key member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition. She and other members of her party openly oppose a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Palestinians have already vowed to block Trump’s peace plan and severed ties with his administration after his December decision to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and declare the city Israel’s capital….
Spotify’s Palestinian launch puts local artists on the map
BETHLEHEM, West Bank (Reuters) 22 Nov by Rami Ayyub & Lara Afghani — Palestinian musicians are fast reaping dividends from their presence on Spotify, which launched its internet streaming service in the Middle East and North Africa last week. “The Arab hub provides a unique platform that brings the full spectrum of Arab culture and creativity, past and present,” said Suhel Nafar, a musician from the Israeli city of Lod who serves as the music streaming service’s senior Arab music and culture editor. Spotify is the first major streaming company to launch a program specific to the occupied Palestinian territories, allowing local artists to reach new global audiences despite local challenges. “As Palestinian artists, we face a lot of restrictions. Some cannot travel to perform in another country,” said Bashar Murad, a Palestinian singer based in East Jerusalem, an area that Israel captured, along with the West Bank, in a 1967 war. He said Spotify is helping him to get his music heard. “After the launch, my monthly followers (on Spotify) increased from 30 to something like 6,500,” Murad added. However, the lack of high-speed cellular services in the West Bank and Gaza Strip will limit the app’s on-the-go use….
Israel ex-minister says coalition scuppered his death penalty bill
JERUSALEM (AFP) 20 Nov — Resigned defence minister Avigdor Lieberman on Tuesday accused his former partners in Israel’s coalition government of scuppering a bill that would have made it easier to sentence Palestinian attackers to death. A law to sentence “terrorists” to death was one of Lieberman’s election promises in 2015, and government support for it was a condition for Lieberman’s Yisrael Beitenu joining Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition and becoming defence minister. A bill in that vein, penned by Yisrael Beitenu members, passed a preliminary vote by the full parliament in January, before arriving at the Knesset’s law committee for discussion and votes ahead of final approval in the plenum. On Wednesday, however, Lieberman quit Netanyahu’s coalition over Israel’s latest truce with Hamas, which he called a “capitulation to terror,” leaving the coalition with an unstable one-seat majority and resentment toward Yisrael Beitenu. After the bill was debated but not voted on in a Tuesday discussion at the law committee, Lieberman said he was “shocked” to hear that committee chairman Nissan Slomiansky received “orders from above” to prevent it from advancing….
Divided by war, Israel and Gaza’s Instagrammers tell their own stories
ISRAEL-GAZA BORDER (Reuters) 22 Nov by Rami Ayyub et al. — In another part of the world they might have gone to the same schools or be sharing wifi in the same coffee shops. Although these young women Instagrammers live just a few kilometers apart, they will likely never meet. One group are Gaza Palestinians and the other are Israeli schoolgirls living beside Gaza, with Israel’s concrete and razorwire border fortifications stretching between them. But one thing they share is a desire to take control of their own stories. Both groups are convinced that their lives are misrepresented or misunderstood by the outside world … “Gaza is closed, not many have access here. With Instagram, you can show Gaza to the world through your own eyes” said Manar Alzraiy, project manager of “We Are Not Numbers”, a Gaza-based program for young writers, artists and photographers … On the Israeli side, the Instagram account Otef Gaza, which means “Gaza Periphery” in Hebrew, was started by a group of teenage girls in and around Kerem Shalom, a kibbutz beside the border. The group highlights photographs of farmland scorched by incendiary devices flown into Israel during Palestinian border protests, and rockets fired by Gaza militants which send Israelis running to shelters….
Jordan denies pregnant Palestinian woman access to West Bank
MEMO 21 Nov — Jordanian authorities yesterday refused to allow a pregnant Palestinian woman to travel to the West Bank, Quds News Network reported. The woman, Yaqeen Hayek, holds a West Bank ID card but lives with her husband in Gaza. Her husband has previously been held in Israeli occupation jails and was deported from West Bank to Gaza as a condition of his release years ago. Yaqeen traveled from the Gaza Strip to Egypt and then flew to Jordan to cross into the occupied West Bank through the Allenby crossing to see her family. She last visited West Bank four years ago to give birth to her daughter. Israeli occupation forces have previously banned her from leaving the Gaza Strip for three years. Seven-months pregnant, Yaqeen was travelling with her two- and four-year-old daughters when she was stopped by Jordanian authorities. Human rights NGO the Arab Federation for Human Rights said her family is calling on Jordan to stop this arbitrary procedure. Authorities gave no reason for their refusal.
In first, US votes against UN resolution condemning Israeli presence in Golan
Times of Israel 16 Nov — The United States on Friday for the first time voted against an annual UN resolution calling for Israel to withdraw from the Golan Heights, signifying a dramatic shift in US policy toward the territory. Despite the unprecedented move by the US, the resolution passed with 151 in favor, two against (Israel and the US) and 14 abstentions, one of nine anti-Israel resolutions passed by the world body in one day. Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon thanked the US for the move and said the “UN should deal with Syria’s civil war, not meaningless decisions that won’t affect Israel’s sovereignty in the Golan Heights.” … During the debate, the Syrian envoy vowed that Damascus would recapture the heights by peace or by war. The US announced its changed policy ahead of the vote on “The Occupied Syrian Golan” resolution. If this resolution ever made sense, it surely does not today. The resolution is plainly biased against Israel,” outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said in a statement. The US usually abstains….
UK bill to recognize Palestine submitted to House of Commons
IMEMC/Agencies 23 Nov — A bill to officially recognize a Palestinian state has been submitted to the House of Commons by the first British Palestinian MP, Laula Moran, on Wednesday. The Liberal Democrat MP said, in a video she shared before submitting the bill, that she is very proud of being elected as the first Palestinian MP in the U.K. “but, it remains the fact that Britain has not officially recognized the Palestinians as a state and I believe that is something that should change.” “Since I was elected, I have been dismayed at the progress the Conservative Government has made towards recognizing the state of Palestine,” Moran said, in a statement issued to Anadolu Agency….
India to finance construction of national printing press in Palestine
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 22 Nov — The Palestinian Minister of Finance, Shukri Bishara, and India’s Cosmas International Company signed a contract, on Thursday, for the construction of a national printing press in Palestine. Bishara said in a statement that the national printing press will be financed by India and will cost $5 million. Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa News Agency reported that Ahmad Assaf, the General Supervisor of the Palestinian Official Media, which includes Palestine TV and radio, WAFA News Agency and al-Hayat al-Jadida daily, attended the signing ceremony. Assaf said there was a need for this printing press to print al-Hayat al-Jadida newspaper, governmental and official documents, as well as books.