Saturday, June 30, 2012

#OUTRAGEOUS New Israeli bids for building 171 settlement units east of O. Jerusalem

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- The Israeli ministry of housing issued tenders for the building of 171 settlement units in the southeastern part of occupied Jerusalem.
Specialist in settlement affairs Ahmed Sublaban said these units would be built on 11 dunums of land seized by the Israeli occupation authority from the Palestinian natives of Beit Sahour and Sur Baher towns.
Sublaban added that 130 settlement units would be part of the second stage of Har Homa settlement in Abu Ghuneim Mount and the other 41 units would be part of Pisgat Ze'ev settlement to the northeast of Jerusalem.
He stressed that these settlement projects are aimed at accelerating the Israeli plan to isolate the Palestinian city of Jerusalem from its geographical surrounding.
New Israeli bids for building 171 settlement units east of O. Jerusalem

PCHR Weekly Report: “4 Killed, 32 Wounded By Israeli Fire”

  by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC News 
The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), based in the Gaza Strip, published its weekly report on Israeli violations against the Palestinians in the occupied territories, for the period between June 21 – June 27, stating that four Palestinians were killed, and 32, including one child and two women, were wounded by Israeli military fire.
Photo By Rani Burnat - Bil'in
Photo By Rani Burnat - Bil'in
The PCHR stated that the Israeli army continued its military escalation and the systematic attacks targeting the civilian population and property in the occupied territory.

It added that Israeli soldiers carried out 51 invasions into Palestinian cities, towns and refugee camps in the West Bank, and kidnapped 19 Palestinians, including six children.

Three Palestinian civilians were kidnapped by Israeli soldiers stationed at roadblocks in different parts of the West Bank.

In Jerusalem, the army ordered the demolition of five Palestinian homes in Al-Bustan neighborhood in Silwan.

During the reported period, Israeli soldiers carried out numerous air strikes targeting several areas in the Gaza Strip, leading to the death of four Palestinians, including one civilian.

The air strikes caused 32 injuries among the civilians, including one child and two women. The bombardment also led to the destruction of several houses and shops.

Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank continued their systematic attacks against the Palestinians and their property and lands in the West Bank, and one resident was injured by Israeli settler fire at the entrance of a settlement in occupied East Jerusalem.

The resident, 30, was shot and seriously wounded on June 27, after a guard of the Maaleh Adumim settlement shot him in the abdomen.

The Israeli Police claimed that the resident tried to run down an Israeli police officer, and that he tried to take the gun of a guard of the settlement, “but the guard shot him before he managed to snatch the gun”.

The army also continued its attacks against the nonviolent protests against the illegal Annexation Wall and Settlements in the West Bank, and used excessive force against the protesters.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli Navy continued its attacks and violations against Palestinian fishermen, preventing them from fishing in Palestinian territorial waters.

During the reporting period, Israeli gunboats attacked opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats in the northern and central Gaza Strip on two occasions. No casualties were reported, the PCHR said.

The five-year old illegal Israeli siege on the Gaza Strip continued to isolate more than 1.6 million Palestinians from the rest of the world.

Summary of Israeli Attacks In Gaza

June 22, a Palestinian resistance fighter was killed when an Israeli drove fired a missile at a number of members of the Palestinian resistance in the Al-Boreij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip.

On the same day, another member of the Palestinian resistance was killed and two others were wounded when an Israeli drone fired a missile at them in the northern Gaza Strip.

On 23 June 2012, an Israeli warplane fired a missile at a training site of the Al-Qassam Brigades (the armed wing of Hamas) in the northern Gaza Strip. As a result, 8 Palestinian civilians living nearby houses, including a woman and a child, sustained bruises. Additionally, 5 houses were damaged.

On the same day, an Israeli warplane fired a missile at the maintenance center in Al-Saraya security compound in the center of Gaza City. As a result, 10 Palestinians, including 4 civilians, were wounded, and a number of buildings and shops were damaged.

On the same day, an Israeli warplane fired a missile at a training site of the Palestinian resistance in Deir al-Balah town in the central Gaza Strip. As a result, 3 Palestinian civilians, including a woman, were injured and 6 houses and two cars were damaged.

Also on the same day, an Israeli warplane fired a missile at a car in which a number of members of the Palestinian resistance were traveling. The missile went astray and damaged a number of nearby houses.

Another attack, also carried out on June 23, led to the death of Palestinian resistance fighter in the northern Gaza Strip when an Israeli drone fired a missile at him.

Also on June 23, a Palestinian civilian was killed and 7 civilians and two members of the Palestinian resistance were wounded, when an Israeli warplane fired a missile at a motorbike in Al-Nasser neighborhood in Gaza City.

Summary of Settlement and Settler violations

Israel continued its illegal settlement activities in the West Bank, while its settlers continued their attacks against the Palestinians, their lands and property.

The Jerusalem City Council approved the construction of 180 housing units for settlers in the illegal Armona Hanatsiv illegal settlement, south of occupied Jerusalem.

In Bethlehem, extremist settlers attacked Palestinian property leading to excessive damage.

Summary of attacks carried out against nonviolent protests

Israeli soldiers continued the use of excessive force against nonviolent protests against the Annexation Wall and settlements in the West Bank; one civilian was wounded by military fire while dozens suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.

The attacks were carried out against nonviolent protesters in in Bil’in, Ni’lin and Nabi Saleh, near Ramallah, Soldiers kidnapped a Palestinian civilian and two international human rights defenders.

Soldiers further attacked the weekly nonviolent protests in Sousia, near Bethlehem, and fired tear gas bombs at the protesters leading to several injuries.
International Middle East Media Center

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Denied Entry: Israel's Treatment of Palestinian-American Visitors

CPR calls for an international investigation into death of Palestinian prisoners

CPR calls for an international investigation into death of Palestinian prisoners
NAZARETH,(PIC)-- Human rights organization said that the Palestinian detainees in occupation prisons are suffering from physical and psychological torture, where they face more than seventy-five methods of torture used by the occupation under inhumane conditions in the detention centers.
The Congregation for Palestinian Rights (CPR) said in its statement that Israel is still practicing systematic torture with legal cover from the Israeli judiciary which takes no measure to stop or control those practices, by contrast the Israeli Supreme Court, the highest judicial body, has legitimized the use of torture despite its signing and ratification of the International Convention against Torture.
CPR confirmed that all the Palestinian prisoners in occupation prisons have been subjected to psychological and physical torture where they have been exposed to the most heinous methods of torture in interrogation centres, as a recent study reported, including shabh (tying hands and feet together from the back for prolonged periods) of all kinds, beatings with cables, suspension from the ceiling, flogging, kicking, cursing, in addition to the threat of house demolitions.
The committee called for an international investigation over the death of 70 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons under torture, stressing on the need to press on the occupation state to fulfill the UN and human rights conventions and to bring lawsuits against Israeli occupation officers and soldiers accused of using torture against Palestinian detainees in Israeli occupation prisons.

IOF soldiers fire at residential quarters in southern Gaza

IOF soldiers fire at residential quarters in southern Gaza | Scoop News: June 28, 20120 comments

Gaza Interior Ministry

Israeli occupation forces (IOF) opened machinegun fire at residential quarters in Qarara to the north east of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip, on Tuesday night.

Local sources said that IOF soldiers patrolling the border fence near Kissufim military position suddenly opened fire at buildings in the town but no casualties were reported.

Other sources said that Israeli gunboats fired at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Deir Al-Balah in central Gaza but no casualties were reported among the fishermen.

Israel Army Asks For Extensive Deployment On Egyptian Border

  by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies Report post
Israeli paper, Maariv, reported Thursday that senior leaders of the Israeli army are demanding the government to grant the army $15 billion over the coming five years, in order to deploy the military in full capacity along the border with Egypt.
Egyptian Flag
Maariv said that the army conducted a study about the current situation in Egypt, especially after the overwhelming victory of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Egyptian parliamentary and presidential elections.

Israeli military sources reported that the army should be deployed at full capacity along the border with Egypt “before it is too late”.

Maariv added that the statements of the newly elected president of Egypt, Mohammad Morsi, regarding respecting the Camp David peace agreement with Israel, are encouraging and were enough to satisfy the political leadership in Israel, but not the military.
 International Middle East Media Center

UK report: Israel forces Palestinian children into 'spiral of injustice' - Daily News Egypt

Daily News Egypt

  /   June 28, 2012 
Israel is in breach of the UN Convention on the Rights of Children by violating the rights of Palestinian children according to report backed by the United Kingdom Foreign Office
An Israeli soldier stands guard next to three Palestinian boys who were arrested for throwing stones during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron. Hazem Bader / AFP Photo
An Israeli soldier stands guard next to three Palestinian boys who were arrested for throwing stones during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron. (Photo / Hazem Bader / AFP)

Israel is in breach of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Children by violating the rights of Palestinian children through their detention practices on multiple occasions, according to a delegation of British lawyers backed by the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office.
The delegation released a report, Children in Military Custody, citing Israel’s breach of “articles 2 [discrimination], 3 [child’s best interests], 37(b) [premature resort to detention], (c) [non-separation from adults], (d) [prompt access to lawyers], and 40 [use of shackles] of the UNCRC.”
The announcement comes in the wake of the sentencing of six Palestinian minors, who are between the ages of 14 and 16 years-old. The minors have been in detention since April 2011, when they were younger than 13 at the time of the arrests. Sentences ranged from five to 12 years along with a sizable fine.
The fines attached to the crimes are usually quite heavy, said Hassan Shobeitah, the Palestinian official in charge of monitoring Israeli treatment of prisoners. He said, if not paid on time, the fines result in another year and a half of jail time added to the minors’ sentences.
While, according to international law, a state should not discriminate between children from different nationalities or races, the report showed a clear difference between the treatment of Israeli and Palestinian minors. Several actions taken by the Israelis, such as solitary confinement (which is in many cases construed as torture), coerced confessions and physical violence are all forms of treatment minors were subjected to while in Israeli custody.
The report concluded that the Israeli state operated on the belief that every Palestinian child was a “potential terrorist,” which has led to the court system enforcing what the authors have dubbed a “spiral of injustice.”
The Israeli Embassy spokesperson in London, Mr. Amir Ofek responded to the reports by the British lawyers stating , “Israel appreciates the efforts of the lawyers’ delegation which visited Israel to learn about the challenges involved in dealing with minors involved in acts of militancy and violence.”
Ofek reiterated the position Tel Aviv has maintained in past when faced with criticism over its treatment of Palestinian minors by stating that the nation has been left with little choice, “Regrettably, such activities continue to be encouraged by official Palestinian textbooks and television programmes which glorify terrorism and suicide terrorists. As a result under-18 year olds are frequently involved in lethal acts, ranging from the hurling of boulders at civilians cars, to the murder of five members of a single family in their beds last March. With the Palestinian Authority unable or unwilling to meet its obligation to investigate and prosecute these offences, Israel has no choice but to do so itself.”
Ofek also highlighted that the report referred to some positive steps Israel has taken to alleviate trauma inflicted on minors through detention by raising the age of juvenile offense from 16 to 18, and establishing tribunals with special safeguards for youth offenders. Ofek did not respond to the claims of arrest of minors as young as 12, referred to in the report.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

IOF soldiers storm Al-Khalil village, beat up young man

IOF soldiers storm Al-Khalil village, beat up young man

AL-KHALIL, (PIC)-- Israeli occupation forces (IOF) fiercely beat up a Palestinian young man while on his way to prayers in his village of Samu, south of Al-Khalil, at dawn Wednesday.
Local sources said that IOF soldiers stormed the village at dawn and detained Mohammed Abu Awad for an hour during which they beat him with their rifle butts and batons.
Other IOF infantry patrols stormed the village of Raihiya and Fawar refugee camp in Al-Khalil, installed roadblocks, and obstructed traffic, locals said.

Abu Marzouk: The US renewed its veto on the Palestinian reconciliation

BEIRUT, (PIC)-- Deputy head of Hamas's political bureau Musa Abu Marzouk said his Movement received confirmed information that the US administration recently renewed its veto against the Palestinian reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah factions.
On his facebook page, Abu Marzouk affirmed that the Palestinian authority was informed lately that the American veto imposed on the Palestinian reconciliation is still effective and unchanged.
The Hamas official demanded the PA and Fatah to be honest with the other Palestinian parties about this veto in order to find a solution together to this obstacle and work on regaining the momentum of the Palestinian cause that was lost as a result of the "peace process" and its futile agreements.
The official noted the PA and Fatah started to invent new pretexts for their failure to form the Palestinian unity government after they used to make excuses regarding the work of the central election commission.
He added that their new pretext is to determine a date for the elections in conjunction with the formation of the government, and at the same time they avoid talking about the formation of this government and keep giving inexplicable reasons.
Abu Marzouk: The US renewed its veto on the Palestinian reconciliation

Dozens of Jewish settlers barge into Aqsa mosque

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- Dozens of Jewish settlers entered the Aqsa mosque on Tuesday morning escorted by special police forces, local sources said.
They said that the settlers and foreign tourists entered the Aqsa in groups via the Maghareba gate, walked in its plazas, hoisted the Israeli flag, and took group photos.
A big number of Israeli soldiers on Monday broke into the Aqsa plazas and raised the Israeli flag in front of the Dome of the Rock.
Dozens of Jewish settlers barge into Aqsa mosque

Monday, June 25, 2012

Israel demolishes Bedouin village for 39th time

Published today 21:37
NEGEV (Ma'an) -- Israeli bulldozers demolished Bedouin village al-Araqib for the 39th time on Monday, a lawyer said.

Ayman Odeh, who witnessed the demolition, told Ma'an that demolishing people's homes should not be a routine for Israel.

Israel considers al-Araqib and all Bedouin villages in the Negev illegal, while Bedouins say it is their ancestral land.
 Maan News Agency

Negotiator: UN bid underway, US asked for delay

Published today (updated) 25/06/2012 15:16
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- PLO negotiator Muhammad Ishtayya said Monday that the US and other foreign nations were pressing the Palestinian leadership to suspend its campaign for membership of UN bodies until after the US presidential election.

Ishtayya told the official PA radio Voice of Palestine that the leadership had initiated the process of obtaining a UN General Assembly resolution which recognizes a Palestinian state on borders prior to Israel's occupation in 1967.

Palestinian officials have opened talks with Arab states and France to get the process started, he said.

Paris broke from its allies in October when it backed Palestinian efforts to become a full member of UNESCO, the UN's cultural arm and the first UN agency to grant Palestine full membership.

The US cut off funds to UNESCO after the vote to admit Palestine last year, and earlier cut Palestinian aid after President Mahmoud Abbas made a bid for recognition of Palestinian statehood at the United Nations Security Council.

After the bid failed, Palestinian leaders continued to tout the option of seeking the lesser status upgrade at the UN General Assembly, where the US does not have veto power.

The US has supported Israel's position that UN membership efforts are a unilateral step, bypassing peace talks, and US President Barack Obama is likely to avoid any confrontation before he seeks re-election in a November vote.

Ishtayya denied that Arab countries had exerted pressure on Palestine to stop UN membership bids, insisting that the applications were supported diplomatically and financially by the Arab world.Negotiator: UN bid underway, US asked for delay | Maan News Agency

Putin Visits Palestine to Seek Negotiations, Today

Putin Visits Palestine to Seek Negotiations, Today
Today, 25th June, President of Russia Vladimir Putin will arrive to Jerusalem and Bethlehem to seek the latest developments and the hindered negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel.
An Israeli broadcast said that Putin will run negotiations with the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli President Shimon Peres.
In the second day, Putin will make a tour in the Palestinian territories, he will run negotiations in Bethlehem with the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and he will also participate in the opening ceremony of the Russian Centre of Science and Culture.
The anticipated meeting will concentrate on implementing the conditions of the agreement that both political sides have agreed on in the direct negotiations that took place in Amman.
Russian presidential aide, Yuri Ushakov, said in a press conference in Moscow that Putin's tour improves the importance of Palestine to Russia.
Ushakov said "we stress that the resumption of the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations will include the abandoning of the unilateral actions that may precede the final results of the negotiations, finding solutions for the political issue, and to cease Israeli settlement activities on the Palestinian territories."
"The major part of the negotiations will be addressing the Palestinian reconciliation issue," said Ushakov, "taking in granted the outcomes of the negotiations that were resumed in May between Fatah and Hamas about the formation of the new consensus government."

Israeli soldiers in uniform stroll inside the Aqsa mosque

Israeli soldiers in uniform stroll inside the Aqsa mosque
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- Israeli occupation police allowed around 70 soldiers from the Israeli navy to storm the holy Aqsa mosque in occupied Jerusalem and to stroll in its plazas.
Local sources said that the soldiers broke into the holy site in their uniform at around 0900 am Monday, adding that the leader of the extremist Temple Mount Trustees Gershon Salomon was also allowed into the Aqsa plazas.
The Israeli occupation authorities allow settlers and soldiers to desecrate the holy site at will while banning around 150 Jerusalemite and Palestinian figures from entering it including clergymen, politicians, Aqsa guards, and citizens living near it.

16 Palestinian Injured Near Bethlehem

 by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies 
Palestinian medical sources in the West Bank city of Bethlehem reported, Sunday, that sixteen Palestinian workers were wounded when their van flipped over after Israeli soldiers chased it near Husan town.
The sources said that the workers suffered mild-to-moderate injuries, and were moved to local governmental hospitals in the area.

The workers said that an armored Israeli military jeep was chasing their van after they crossed the Green Line seeking work in Israel.

The workers did not have work permits; after their van flipped over, soldiers assaulted them before handing them to the Palestinian security forces in Bethlehem.
International Middle East Media Center

Israeli forces 'demolish tents in Tubas'

 TUBAS (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces on Monday demolished Palestinian tents and structures in al-Malih near Tubas, the local council said.

The structures belonged to local farmers Ayed Zawahreh, Maryam Faqir, Ibrahim Abu Sabha and Ali al-Faqir, the council said in a statement, adding that women and children were left without shelter in the heat.

Meanwhile, Israeli forces evacuated families in the Ein al-Hilwe and al-Burj neighborhoods of al-Malih for several hours while they conducted military training in the area, the council said.
 Maan News Agency

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Abbas, Haniyeh congratulate Mursi

Published today 20:08
Hamas premier Ismail Haniyeh (R) waves to his supporters in Gaza City
as they celebrate Muhammad Mursi's win in Egypt's presidential
elections on June 24. (Reuters/Mohammed Salem)

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Hamas premier Ismail Haniyeh and President Mahmoud Abbas called Muhammad Mursi on Sunday to congratulate him on his victory in Egypt's presidential elections.

Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mursi was declared Egypt's first democratic president on Sunday by the state election committee, which said he had defeated former general Ahmed Shafik with 51.7 percent of last weekend's run-off vote.

Gaza's Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh phoned Mursi to congratulate him, and supporters marched to Haniyeh's home in Gaza City to celebrate the victory.

One man was killed and five injured in celebratory gunfire, as calls of "Allahu Akbar" rang from mosques across the enclave and residents shared sweets in the streets.

President and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas also telephoned Mursi to congratulate him on his presidency.

Fatah leader Amin Maqboul said his party supported the choice of the Egyptian people.

"We wish the best for the Egyptian people and we will support whatever they choose," said Maqboul, secretary-general of Fatah's Revolutionary Council.

Maqboul told Ma'an he hoped Egypt would regain its status as a regional leader and that the Egyptian people would "unite against challenges, especially Israel's continuous aggression against our people."

Mursi has said he will respect Egypt's 1979 treaty with Israel, on which much US aid depends. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he expected continued cooperation with Egypt on the basis of the bilateral peace accord.

Hamas, Fatah's longtime rival, has close ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, but Maqboul said he hoped Egypt would support Palestinian rights "and treat all sides equally."

Maqboul said Fatah had never linked reconciliation with Hamas "on foreign agendas or with the internal Egyptian situations."

"We will continue our efforts to end the split … We will wait and see what the days will bring. Right now we cannot talk about Egypt’s role but we wish Egyptians and Egypt to live in prosperity," Maqboul said. Maan News Agency

Nabi Saleh 22.6.2012

The Palestine Brief (CPDS) - Gaza Under Attack

The Palestine Brief (7)

Gaza under attack: Four kids killed
Palestinian refugees: deteriorating conditions
Reports: 90% of WB water controlled by Israel, Gaza's water 'unfit to drink'
Palestinian footballer on hunger strike to be released
A weekly report published by the Center for Political and Development Studies (CPDS), Gaza on the latest developments in Palestine.
By Yousef M. Aljamal
June 24, 2012
Refugees' conditions deteriorating
The Refugees' Affairs Department of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) published a report detailing the conditions of Palestinian refugees, living in the Gaza Strip. The report compares the conditions of refugees in 2012 and 2006. The report writer, Ala'a Abu-Diaa, states that refugees' conditions are deteriorating, in relation to housing and lands' price, which doubled in the last five years. The rate of exports decreased 80% compared to the pre-siege period. Gazans found refuge, the report continues, in tunnels linking Gaza with Egypt.
Refugees are still going through endless crisis, beginning with electricity and including fuel, which affect all walks of life in the besieged coastal enclave. The newly published report states that over 70% of refugees depend mainly on aid delivered by UNRWA.
The report concludes that 90% of Gaza water is unfit to drink. The reasons behind this deteriorating situation, the writer of the report believes, are the racist policies of occupation, the latest war on Gaza , the siege, and the division and its impact on society and education, which resulted in 45% of unemployed graduates.
Report: 90% of WB water is under occupation control
The water crisis in the West Bank worsens, especially in the southern provinces, each year with the beginning of summer, because of the increased water consumption. Many officials and experts says that this water crisis is due to the occupation control over water resources and the local mismanagement in distributing water.
Palestinian Water Authority Chief Shaddad Attili holds the Israeli occupation responsible for the water crisis because of its disregard of the Oslo conventions and its refusal to provide the Palestinian territories with the quantities of water upon which the two sides agreed, and to allow the drilling of wells and setting up of projects for the water supply .
Abdul Hadi Hantash, an expert in settlement affairs, states that the occupation controls 84% of water in the West Bank after seizing its three water basins and preventing Palestinians from using them.
New report: Gaza’s water ‘unfit to drink’
A report released by Save the Children and Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP), on the fifth anniversary of the Israeli blockade of Gaza, describes how Gaza’s water supply is heavily polluted by fertilizer and human waste, and states that nearly all of the water in Gaza is “unfit for drinking.”
Gaza’s broken sewage system led to open cesspits and waste-caused nitrate pollution. The high levels of nitrates in the water, ten times the safe levels established by the World Health Organization (WHO), have been linked to anemia and some cancers, and are wreaking health havoc heavily upon children and pregnant women in Gaza, the report details.
Two-year old toddler killed in Israeli airstrike

A two-year old toddler was killed and her brother was wounded in an Israeli occupation airstrike on Gaza on Thursday evening, bringing the number of Palestinians killed in the latest Israeli onslaught on Gaza to seven.
Spokesman for the Ambulance and Emergency services in Gaza, Adham Abu Selmeyya, said that Hadeel Haddad was killed and her brother was moderately wounded in an Israeli occupation airstrike on the Zaitoun suburb east of Gaza City.
Fresh Israeli raid on central Gaza
Israeli warplanes fired two missiles at Deir Al-Balah town in central Gaza Strip on Tuesday, local sources said. They said that the missile attack targeted a number of citizens in Nakheel street but no casualties were suffered.
Earlier, an Israeli raid targeted and seriously wounded a man riding a motorbike at the entrance to Deir Al-Balah.
Israeli air raid wounds five citizens including woman and her child
Israeli warplanes raided a foundry in Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip, on Sunday night wounding five citizens and destroying the foundry, local sources said.
The sources stressed that the raid targeted a metal workshop to the north west of Rafah in an area called Khirbat Al-Adas. They said that the warplanes fired two missiles at the workshop, wounding the citizens and completely destroying it.
Israeli gunboats kidnap four Palestinian fishermen at sea
Israeli navy gunboats intercepted a Palestinian fishing boat off the coast of Gaza before midnight Sunday and kidnapped all four fishermen on board including two brothers. The navy gunboats chased the fishing boat and forced it to stop before taking away the four fishermen.
The latest updates in the Gaza Strip
Israel launched several air strikes in the last 24 hours on the Gaza Strip, targeting civilian facilities, a police station and open lands. 16 Palestinians, most of them kids, were killed and some 73 were injured. One of the latest victim is a 4-year old boy named Ali-Moataz Alshawaf from Khanyounis city.
A miracle took place when a bomb didn't explode in Jabalyia car station, Alsaha, to the east of Gaza. The area is always crowded with passengers who want to travel between Gaza and Jabalyia.
Three people were injured when Israel targeted a civilian car in Al-Zaytoun.

WATCH: IOF night raids on two Palestinian villages in the West Bank
The Palestinian village of Nabi Saleh was raided last Sunday by the IOF. Nabi Saleh, which has been conducting weekly nonviolent demonstrations since the end of 2009 against Israel’s occupation and the encroaching settlement of Halamish, has been the target of repeated night raids over the last two years.

Jerusalem mosque attacked by settlers
Extremist settlers set fire at dawn Tuesday to the Grand Mosque of Jaba village northeast of occupied Jerusalem, causing considerable material damage. Quds Press quoted Abudulkarem Bisharat, head of the municipal council in Jaba, as saying that settlers at one o'clock in the morning carried out an arson attack on the Grand Mosque in the village.
He said the settlers who carried out the attack wrote racist slurs and their usual gang signature, "the price tag," on the Mosque's wall.
Jerusalemites confront Israeli raid on Aisawiye

Israeli occupation forces stormed the town of Aisawiye to the north east of occupied Jerusalem on Monday and were confronted by inhabitants. Local sources said that young men threw stones at the invading troops, who fired rubber bullets and stun grenades in a bid to disperse them.

Israeli army OK’s attack dogs as ‘non-lethal weapons’

Despite reports Thursday that the Israeli Defense Forces suspended its use of attack dogs against Palestinians, the military declared they will continue to use the live animals as "non-lethal weapons." The review was prompted after an incident last March when an army dog wrangled the arm of Ahmad Shtawi for 10-minutes, locking his jaw on the Palestinian protester and causing him to be hospitalized.
Palestinian footballer ends his 95-day hunger strike
Mahmoud Sarsak, the Palestinian national footballer player who gathered worldwide attention with a three-month hunger strike that brought him to the brink of death, is to be freed by Israel on 10 July, the Associated Press quoted his lawyer as saying:
A lawyer for an imprisoned Palestinian soccer player who has been on a hunger strike for more than three months says his client has agreed to resume eating and will be released July 10 in a deal with Israel.
The attorney, Mohammed Jabareen, spoke Monday after the deal was struck at an Israeli prison clinic.
ENDSThe Palestine Brief (CPDS) - Gaza Under Attack

Aerial footage of Israeli strike killing 6-yr-old boy in Gaza

by Relatives are mourning a six-year-old Palestinian boy who was killed by an Israeli strike on the Gaza Strip. Israel confirmed the strikes, which also wounded 20 other people, but denies any involvement in the child's death. On Saturday Israel launched air raids on Palestinian territory following rocket fire from Gaza that wounded an Israeli man. Gaza health officials confirmed that at least four people had been killed and over 20 more wounded.

End the Assault on Gaza - Joint Statement Gazan Civil Groups

Joint Media Statement (See list of groups below.)
End the Assault on Gaza
Besieged Gaza, Occupied Palestine
We condemn in the strongest possible terms the latest Israeli war crimes committed against our people in the Gaza Strip. We call on the international community and the Arab and Islamic worlds, to take up their responsibility to protect the Palestinian people from this heinous aggression and immediately terminate the continuing Israeli policy of collective punishment.
Over the last 6 days, Gaza City has been bombed by Apache helicopters,F16 and drones. More than 16 civilians, including children, have been killed and more than 70 injured in Beit Hanoun, Jabalya, Khan Younus, and Gaza.
Gaza has been enduring Israeli policies of extermination and vandalism since June, 2006. The Palestinian people have already been under siege for more than 6 years. The continuing international conspiracy of silence towards the genocidal war taking place against the 1.5 million civilians in Gaza indicates complicity in these war crimes.
We call upon the international community to demand that the rogue Apartheid State of Israel end its siege. We also would like to remind the members of the UN that the International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law such as The Fourth Geneva Convention stipulate the protection of civilian lives and property, unless Palestinian women and children are not considered civilians.
Joint Media Statement From
Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU)
General Union for Health Services Workers
General Union for Public Services Workers
General Union for Petrochemical and Gas Workers
General Union for Agricultural Workers
Union of Women’s Work Committees
Union of Synergies—Women Unit
Union of Palestinian Women Committees
Women’s Studies Society
Working Woman’s Society
Palestinian Students’ Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PSCABI)
University Teachers’ Association
The One Democratic State Group (ODSG)
One Democratic State Group
End the Assault on Gaza - Joint Statement Gazan Civil Groups | Scoop News

OIC: Gaza suffers acute shortage in drinking water

Jeddah, (PIC)-- The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) stated that the Gaza Strip is suffering an acute shortage in potable water, because of its reliance on groundwater, which is plagued by pollution and high salinity.
The OIC said in its monthly report, which monitors the humanitarian conditions in the coastal enclave, that 95% of Gaza's water is undrinkable, stressing that this problem falls within what is classified as "a real crisis in preventive health."
Thus, it called on donors as well as human rights and environmental organizations to establish water desalination projects in Gaza, emphasizing the importance of modernizing and developing the Strip’s sewage network.
OIC: Gaza suffers acute shortage in drinking water

Barhoum blasts European silence, American collusion in the Israel aggression

 Fawzi Barhoum, a Hamas spokesman, has blasted the European silence and the American collusion in the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip that killed 16 Palestinian citizens including four children.
He told AFP on Saturday that Gaza Strip is living an atmosphere of war, adding that the Israeli occupation authority (IOA) was exploiting the unlimited American political, military, and economic support in addition to the European silence and the Arab preoccupation with internal affairs to launch its aggression.
Barhoum asked the world to intervene and bridle the IOA and urged the Arab League to exercise pressure on the IOA. He also asked the PA in Ramallah to halt all forms of security coordination with the Israeli security apparatuses, affirming the resistance’s right to respond to the Israeli attacks.
For its part, the armed wing of Hamas, the Qassam Brigades, vowed that its reprisal strikes would continue as long as the Israeli attacks continued.
It said in a terse statement on Saturday that the Israeli crimes could not pass without punishment, adding that it would determine the right time and means of response.
Barhoum blasts European silence, American collusion in the Israel aggression

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Captive Safadi resumes his hunger strike


Nablus, (PIC)-- Palestinian detainee Hassan Safadi resumed his hunger strike protesting the renewal of his administrative detention and the Israeli occupation authorities' violation of the agreement requiring his release after the expiration of his current detention.
Fouad Safadi, the brother of prisoner Hassan who is detained in Hadarim prison, said that his brother started on June 21 an open hunger strike following the IOA breach of the agreement it signed with him and following the decision of the Israeli military court in Ofer prison renewing his administrative detention for additional six months.
Fouad revealed that, according to information he received from human rights sources, the prison administration at Hadarim transferred his brother to solitary confinement immediately after resuming his hunger strike.
He pointed out that his brother, who had been arrested nearly a year ago and served previously more than nine years in the occupation jails, was to be released on June 29 after the end of his current six-month detention.
Hassan Safadi had gone on an open hunger strike that had lasted 75 days demanding his release and the end of his administrative detention.
He suspended his strike after reaching an agreement with the Israeli prison service last May requiring his release as soon as his current sentence ends and the non-renewal of his detention in return for ending his strike. However, the occupation authorities breached the agreement.
Captive Safadi resumes his hunger strike

178 International Decisions in Condemnation of Israel’s Mistreatment of Palestinian Prisoners

The 26th of June marks the anniversary of the International Day against Torture.
A report recently issued by Detainees and Ex-Detainees Society revealed that torturing Palestinian prisoners and humiliating them have become a form of ethical and legal corruption practiced by the Israeli occupation authorities.
The report also said that in the past few years, torturing prisoners has become a means for humiliating prisoners and depriving them of their humanity and dignity, and not a for interrogation purposes.
This is shown through pictures published by Israeli soldiers that show the soldiers both male and female posing with prisoners who are handcuffed and blindfolded in disgraceful positions, while the soldiers appear happy and proud of their handwork.
Soldiers and interrogators used and still using unethical methods during interrogations with prisoners, especially child prisoners. Such methods include sexual abuses (around 16% of detained children) and threatening to rape them. Around 90% of soldiers treat prisoners with excessive brutality.
The International Day against Torture addresses the physical and psychological torture used continuously by the Israeli interrogators, which demands an immediate intervention to pursue Israel and condemn the war crimes it practices against prisoners in serious violation of international humanitarian law.
Minister of Detainees and Ex-Detainees society, Issa Qaraqe, called on the United Nations to declare that Israel is not a state above the international humanitarian law, and to withdraw its membership from the UN because it hasn't respected the human rights law and the UN conventions, which were the main reason to for accepting Israel as member state in the UN.
Qaraqe said that 178 decisions has been issued by the UN condemning Israel for its serious mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners since 1967, which shows that Israel hasn't committed to acting upon these international decisions.
178 International Decisions in Condemnation of Israel’s Mistreatment of Palestinian Prisoners

Egyptian forces arrest 3 Palestinians in Sinai

Published today 13:44
An Egyptian soldier stands guard at Rafah.(MaanImages/file)

EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) -- Three Palestinians were arrested in the Egyptian Sinai on Saturday after entering the country illegally through underground smuggling tunnels, Ma'an's correspondent said.

The men told Egyptian security forces that they were on route to Cairo to undertake business deals. All three had fake passports and between them they had $37,000 in cash.

They have been referred to Egypt's general prosecution services.

Meanwhile, Egyptian intelligence services in Rafah seized an explosive belt hidden inside an abandoned church. Egyptian security deployed forces in the Sinai to prepare for any potential flare-up in violence.
 Maan News Agency

Gazan Injured in Airstrike Dies of Wounds

Palestine News & Info Agency - WAFA
GAZA, June 23, 2012 (WAFA) – A Palestinian from Gaza who was critically injured in an Israeli airstrike late Friday night, died early Saturday of his wounds, said medical sources.

They said 20-year-old Hamam Abu Qadous, from Sheikh Radwan neighborhood of Gaza City, died of his wounds after he and two others were injured when hit by a missile.

Meanwhile, 20 Palestinians were injured in separate airstrikes that targeted different locations of the Gaza Strip in the early hours of Saturday, according to various sources.

Eight people were injured from shrapnel when an Israeli F16 warplane fired a missile at the national security building in the central Gaza Strip.

Another airstrike targeted the site of the civil administration east of Jabalia, northern Gaza, injuring 10 Palestinians, one reported in critical condition.

A third airstrike targeted a location west of Deir al-Balah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, injuring one passerby.

A total of 12 Palestinians have been killed since the Israeli airstrikes against the Gaza Strip began on Monday.

Child Killed in Israeli Airstrike on Gaza

Palestine News & Info Agency - WAFA - Child Killed in Israeli Airstrike on Gaza: KHAN YOUNIS, June 23, 2012 (WAFA) – A 5-year-old child was killed Saturday when Israeli jets fired a missile at a playground near Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip, according to initial reports.

It said Mutaz Shawaf was playing with other children when a missile hit the playground in the town of Abassan, near Khan Younis, killing Shawaf and injuring others.

With the death of Shawaf, Palestinian medical sources said a total of 14 Palestinians have been killed since Israel started its airstrikes on Gaza on Monday, including three children, and injured 67 people, including seven critical, 17 children and five women.

Ministry: 4-year-old boy killed by Israeli tank fire

Published today (updated) 23/06/2012 12:11
A Palestinian man reacts at a hospital morgue in Dir al-Balah in the
central Gaza Strip, following an Israeli air strike June 22, 2012.
Reuters/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- A four-year-old boy was killed and seven others wounded as Israeli tanks fired at areas in southern and northern Gaza on Saturday, medical officials said.

Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qidra said Muatazz al-Sawwaf, 4, was killed and three others injured, one seriously, by Israeli tank fire in the Abasan neighborhood east of Khan Younis.

Meanwhile, three people were wounded in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza, when Israeli forces opened fire at farmers tending their land, witnesses said.

Explosions were also reported in Gaza City and Rafah, witnesses said. At least one person was injured.

Earlier Saturday, Israel launched air strikes against three Hamas security targets in the Gaza Strip, wounding at least 17 people, Hamas medical officials said.

An Israeli man was injured in Sderot early Saturday after a rocket hit the town as he was trying to enter a concrete shelter, Israeli officials said.

The rocket was one of 18 fired into Israel, the military said. Six other rockets were intercepted by an Israeli missile defense system.

The PFLP's military wing, the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, claimed responsibility for two rockets fired at southern Israel on Saturday.

Airstrikes on Friday, which Israel's army said were in response to rocket fire from militants, brought the Gaza death toll to 10 people since hostilities began.

Israel killed eight Palestinians over three days of heavy shelling that ended Wednesday night as Hamas' military wing signed up to a truce mediated by Egypt.

Hamas militants had conditionally pledged to adhere to a truce brokered by Egypt on Wednesday, if Israel also withheld fire. Israel never formally commented on the deal but its officials have vowed to respond to any rocket fire from Gaza.

Israel said Gaza militants had also fired more than 130 rockets at Israel since Monday, causing no casualties, but disrupting life in an area where a million Israelis live and where civilians have been urged to remain near shelters.

Reuters contributed to this report
 Maan News Agency

When your child asks The most difficult question By haithmkatib

Israel Continues to Strike Gaza Through the Night

 by Circarre Parrhesia - IMEMC & Agencies Report post
The shelling of Gaza has continued into the early hours of Saturday morning, according to Palestinian residents of the coastal enclave.
Young Palestinians have taken to the social networking platform Twitter for the last two hours to report multiple bombardments from Israeli Air Force jets resulting in damage and injuries.

In the area of as-Saraya was struck leading to a large fire, which was attended to by firefighters, and resulted in seven injuries.

Air strikes in the north of Gaza resulted in six more injuries.

This week 9 Palestinians have been killed, the majority of whom have been claimed as fighters by various groups. Furthermore dozens have been injured, mostly civilians.

The Gaza Strip is home to 1.7 million Palestinians, and is 356 square kilometres in size, making it the most densely populated part of the world.
International Middle East Media Center

Soldiers Attacks Bil’in’s Weekly Protest

 author by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC News Report post
One Palestinian was injured, and dozens of protesters suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation, after Israeli soldiers attacked dozens of nonviolent Palestinian, Israeli and international peace activists participating in the weekly nonviolent protest against the Wall and Settlement, in Bil’in village, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah. The army also attacked nonviolent protests in Ni'lin and Nabi Saleh, in addition to Al-Ma'sara village near Bethlehem
Photo By Rani Burnat
Photo By Rani Burnat
The Friends of Freedom and Justice Committee in Bil’in reported that resident Ahmad Burnat, 18, sprained his knee while avoiding military fire, while dozens of protesters suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.

The protest started after the residents conducted Friday prayers at the local mosque in Bil’in, and marched carrying Palestinian flags and chanting slogans calling for the end of the occupation, the destruction of the illegal apartheid wall, the liberation of all political prisoners held by Israel, and also chanted for unity and the liberation of occupied Jerusalem.

As the protesters arrived at the Abu Lemon national reserve, soldiers based behind the concrete Annexation Wall fired rubber-coated metal bullets, concussion grenades, and gas bombs at the protesters before spraying them with toxic water leading to dozens of injuries.

Later on, clashes took place between local youths and Israeli soldiers; the youths hurled stones and empty bottles at the soldiers and the army fired more gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets.

Also on Friday, soldiers attacked weekly nonviolent protests against the Wall and Settlements in the nearby villages of Ni’lin and Nabi Saleh.

Soldiers further attacked the weekly nonviolent protests in Al Ma’sara and Sousia villages, near Bethlehem. In Sousia, the army fired tear gas bombs at the protesters leading to several injuries.

It is worth mentioning that, this week, the Israeli army handed 58 home-demolition orders to families from Sousia to make way for new illegal Israeli settlement construction in the area.
category ramallah | non-violent action | news report author email saed at imemc dot org
Related Link(s):
Photo By Rani Burnat
Photo By Rani Burnat
International Middle East Media Center

Friday, June 22, 2012

Hundreds protest at Palestinian hamlet set for razing


SUSIYA, Palestinian Territories: Hundreds of Palestinians and peace activists on Friday held a protest at the West Bank village Susiya, which Israel has recently served demolition orders.
An AFP correspondent said over 500 people demonstrated at the site, located in the southernmost part of the West Bank, carrying signs against the evacuation and demolition of the 50 structures comprising the hamlet.
The Israeli army and border police were present in large numbers, the correspondent reported, adding there were minor clashes between the sides.
However, there were no injuries caused or no arrests were made.
An Israeli military spokeswoman said that "500 Palestinians and rioters gathered near Susiya. Once they started approaching (the nearby Israeli settlement also named) Susiya, soldiers used riot dispersal means."
She added that to the best of her knowledge, nobody was wounded or arrested.
A spokesman for Israel's Civil Administration, the military body that governs areas of the West Bank under full Israeli control, said residents of Susiya hamlet had received the demolition orders last week.
The orders were the result of a petition by the right-wing Regavim organization to the Supreme Court, which argued the structures were built without a permit and therefore illegal.
Permits for Palestinians to build in the West Bank are extremely rare and the Israeli authorities routinely issue demolition orders for houses and other structures built without their approval.
The spokesman noted the court had afforded the residents two weeks to appeal the decision.
"The demolition will take place only after the court decrees on the case," he said.

Palestinian Center for Human Rights 10 Palestinians killed by Israeli soldiers and settlers this week

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

8 Palestinians, including a child, were killed by IOF in the Gaza Strip.
17 Palestinians, including 3 children, a woman and a blind old man, were wounded.
5 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children, sustained bruises.
A house, a workshop and two cars were destroyed, and a number of houses, a school and a workshop were heavily damaged.

Two Palestinian civilians were killed and a third one was wounded by an Israeli settler south of Hebron.

IOF use force to disperse peaceful protest organized by Palestinian civilians in the West Bank.
5 Palestinian civilians were wounded.

IOF conducted 54 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 3 limited ones into the Gaza Strip.   
IOF arrested 17 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children, in the West Bank.
IOF demolished an under-construction house, razed 5 dunums[1] of agricultural land and burnt 15 dunum of agricultural land planted with wheat in the Gaza Strip.

IOF continued to attack Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip.
IOF launched 9 attacks against Palestinian fishermen and fishing boats.

Israel has continued to impose a total closure on the OPT and has isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world.

IOF have continued efforts to create a Jewish demographic majority in East Jerusalem.
The Israeli municipality of Jerusalem forced a Palestinian civilian to demolish his house and a subordinate farm.

IOF have continued settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
IOF delivered notices to demolish houses in Areas C[2].
Israeli settlers set fire to a mosque in Jaba’ village, northeast of Jerusalem.
Israeli settlers burnt 22 trees in Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqilya. 

Occupation arrests three Palestinians in Al-Khalil and Bethlehem

Occupation arrests three Palestinians in Al-Khalil and Bethlehem

RAMALLAH,(PIC)-- Occupation forces arrested two boys at dawn on Friday after raiding their homes in the town of Beit Omar and Arrub camp north of Al-Khalil in the West Bank, while the third citizen was arrested at a military checkpoint west of Bethlehem in the West Bank.
Abdullah Mohammed Abu Maria, 17, was arrested by the IOF after raiding his home in Beit Omar, in addition to Hassan Abdul-Karim al-Titi, 18, who was arrested after raiding his home in Arrub camp near Arrub town.
The occupation forces raided at dawn the towns of Bani Naim and Dora where they deployed in the neighborhoods for several hours.
Meanwhile, IOF arrested, in Bethlehem, Jihad Muhammad Ali Zawahra, 22, near a military checkpoint southwest of the province, where he was transferred to an unknown destination.

Israeli gunboats 'shell Gaza beach'

Israeli gunboats 'shell Gaza beach' | Maan News Agency:
 Published today (updated) 22/06/2012 15:02
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli gunboats shelled a beach in northern Gaza late Thursday night, witnesses said.

The shelling caused two explosions but not injuries were reported, a Ma'an correspondent said.

An Israeli military spokeswoman was not immediately familiar with the incident.

The military wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said it fired four rockets from Gaza on Friday.

The Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades said it launched two rockets toward Ashkelon, one at the Sufa crossing area and another at Meftahim, east of Khan Younis.

An Israeli army spokeswoman said two rockets landed in southern Israel, causing no injuries.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Israeli forces detain 6 fishermen off Gaza coast

Published today 20:57
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces detained six fishermen off the coast of the Gaza Strip on Wednesday night, a local official said.

Mahfouz al-Kabariti, Chairman of the Palestinian Association for Fishing and Marine Sports, said in a statement that Israeli troops detained six fishermen from three boats near Beit Lahiya.

He identified those detained as Hatem Abu Wardeh, Fadel Abu Wardeh, Mahmud Abu Wardeh, Mohamad Khaleh, Noman al-Saksik, and Abed Sobhi Saad Allah.

The incident was Israel's 14th attack on fishermen over the last month, Kabariti said.

An Israeli military spokesman did not return a call seeking comment. Maan News Agency

Israel murders more Palestinians

A two-year-old is among the victims of a barrage of violence Israel this week thrust on the Palestinians, writes Khaled Amayreh in the West Bank

Click to view caption
Palestinian medics treat a man wounded by Israeli fire in a hospital in Deir Al-Balah, Gaza Strip
The Israeli occupation army and paramilitary Jewish settlers killed more than 10 Palestinians this week, including a two-year-old toddler who died after her Gaza home was hit by a missile fired from an Israeli military drone.
Israeli sources claimed some of the victims were involved in attempts to attack Israeli targets or trying to lay landmines along the Israel-Gaza borders, which is disputed by Palestinians who argue that Israel is killing Palestinians for the sake of it.
On Monday, 18 June, Israeli aircraft killed four Palestinians in two separate attacks in the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun. Five other Palestinians were also injured.
The killing in northern Gaza came after suspected resistance fighters killed a Jewish settler along Israel's border with Egypt. Two of the fighters were subsequently killed by Israeli troops.
In addition to the toddler, Hadil Al-Hadad, the Israeli army targeted two people riding a motorcycle in Deir Al-Balah in central Gaza as well as two other people affiliated with the military wing of Hamas. The Israeli air force also targeted metal workshops and foundries Israel claimed were involved in manufacturing rockets. The Israeli army has targeted dozens of these workshops, exacerbating the already shocking state of poverty in the Strip.
Earlier in the week, fanatical Jewish settlers chased and killed two unarmed Palestinians near the town of Yatta in the southern West Bank. Palestinian eyewitnesses described the killing as amounting to an execution.
Israeli sources, quoting settlers involved in the killings, claimed the Palestinians were trying to steal money from a Jewish settler.
Settlers implicated in murdering Palestinians are routinely "advised" by their religious leaders to concoct narratives that would exonerate them in case they are arrested or prosecuted by the authorities.
Hamas and other Palestinian groups retaliated by firing homemade missiles on nearby Israeli settlements, injuring four Israeli soldiers.
Israeli sources said as many as 30 rockets were fired from Gaza onto Israel in less than 24 hours. Most of the rockets landed in open fields.
Hamas possesses a small arsenal of mostly primitive and ineffective rockets it hopes can create a semblance of deterrence vis-³-vis Israel. On the other hand, Israel uses the "rockets of Hamas" as a propaganda tool to justify murdering Palestinians on a nearly daily basis.
Hamas and other Palestinian military factions have fired thousands of homemade rockets on Israeli targets, mostly as a response to deadly Israeli aggressions, creating fear and panic in nearby settlements and towns, but very few casualties.
On the other hand, Israel has killed thousands of mostly civilian Palestinians and destroyed hundreds of homes, using state-of-the-art of US technology, including F-16 jet fighters and armed drones.
It is unclear why Israel is escalating its terror and violence against the Palestinians, especially in the Gaza Strip.
Israeli and Palestinian commentators believe the stepped-up attacks on Palestinians are intended to further exhaust the Hamas-run Gaza Strip and keep it in a perpetual state of imbalance. Israel may also be trying to appease settler circles following a recent government decision to evacuate a few settlers from a settlement outpost near Ramallah.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) blamed Israel for the "recent escalation". It reiterated accusations that Israel was effectively eliminating any prospective chances for the resumption of the stalled peace process.
Hamas, for its part, accused the PA of adopting "a cowardly stance vis-³-vis Israeli aggression". Fawzi Barhoum, a Hamas spokesman, said that while Israel was murdering Palestinians non-stop, the PA was still pandering to the murderers' government, in the hope of resuming a peace process that everyone knows leads will nowhere.
Barhoum said recent contacts between occupied Ramallah and Israeli authorities aimed at resuming negotiations between the two sides were a brazen betrayal of Palestinian blood.
Earlier, it was reported that PA negotiator Saeb Ereikat might meet with Shaul Mofaz, leader of the Kadima faction that recently joined the Binyamin Netanyahu government.
SETTLERS ATTACK MOSQUE: Meanwhile, Jewish settlers attacked an desecrated a mosque in the Palestinian village of Jabaa near Ramallah, torching the entrance of the mosque and scrawling anti-Palestinian slogans on its walls.
The slogans scribbled read: "The war has begun" and "You will pay the price."
The torching of the mosque is the sixth of its kind in the West Bank in the past two years. Israeli sources suspect the terrorist act was carried out by settlers protesting Israeli government plans to evacuate dozens of settlers living in apartments built on private Palestinian land near Ramallah.
Despite the shocking frequency of such incidents, the Israeli army has failed to apprehend the perpetrators, who are believed to act on instructions or religious edicts issued by their rabbis.
Settler and pro-settler groups have long infiltrated the Israeli army and justice system to the point that the Israeli army is hesitant to confront settlers head-on, even when they are caught red-handed murdering, harassing, beating or aggressing Palestinians.

Al-Ahram Weekly | Region

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hamas agrees to Egypt-brokered ceasefire with Israel

 GAZA CITY: The military wing of Hamas said late on Wednesday it had agreed to an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Israel, after three days of bloodshed in and around Gaza.

"In response to the Egyptian efforts to try and stop the aggression on our people, we at Al-Qassam Brigades and all resistance factions declare our commitment to stop this round of confrontation, as long as (Israel) commits to stopping its crimes," said a statement from Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades.

The statement comes after three days of bloodshed in and around Gaza, in which eight Palestinians were killed while militants have fired scores of rockets at the Jewish state, one of which slammed into a border police outpost, wounding four.

The Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades statement noted they had fired 96 rockets and nine mortars at the Jewish state during the recent wave of violence, in a rare show of force from the group that had been observing a de facto truce on rocket attacks.

"Our confrontation with the enemy in this round was at the minimal level of fire and responses, this is a message that the (Israeli) leaders should understand very well," Al-Qassam added in the statement.

 Channel NewsAsia

John Quigley: The Wall Must Come Down

For 45 years now, the Palestinian people have been subjected to occupation by Israel in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. For the last ten of those years, they have had to cope, in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, with a wall built by Israel that has served to entrench the occupation. The International Court of Justice was more than a little prophetic when it said in 2004 that the wall threatened the self-determination of the Palestinian people. The wall protects Israeli settlements, which have mushroomed in the ensuing years.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) made that statement in the course of a formal opinion on the legal consequences of the construction of the wall, issued at the request of the UN General Assembly. In no uncertain terms, the Court said that the wall must come down. A threat to self-determination was seen in separating off a sector of the West Bank in territory contiguous with that of Israel. In particular, the path of the wall included some Israeli settlements on the western side. A threat to self-determination was also seen in the destruction of the Palestinian economy and the fabric of Palestinian society, which may in fact be the main purpose of the wall. One segment of West Bank Palestinians became caged in the area between the wall and the Green line. Farmers were separated from their fields and children from their schools. The sick were separated from hospitals.
The Court applied several propositions of law that are important even beyond the issue of the wall itself. The Court used the law of belligerent occupation. The Israeli Government increasingly, but unconvincingly, questions whether the West Bank is under belligerent occupation, which requires that the "civic life" of the population be protected. On this, the Israeli Government is strangely at odds with Israel's own Supreme Court, which agrees with the International Court of Justice that Israel must conform to the requirements of belligerent occupation.
And contrary to the view of the Israeli Government, the ICJ said that human rights obligations that Israel has undertaken by treaty apply to what Israel does in the West Bank. The Israeli Government has tried unsuccessfully to convince human rights monitoring bodies that treaties like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child apply only in the territory of Israel itself. The ICJ found violations of human rights obligations in the wall construction.
The ICJ's opinion is dismissed by the Israeli Government on the grounds that it is only "advisory," therefore not binding. This is technically true. Israel has taken care not to subject itself to the jurisdiction of the Court in a way that would allow other states to sue it over what it does in the West Bank. The Court's decision could be issued only via another route, a request by the UN General Assembly for an advisory opinion. While the decision does not bind Israel in a formal sense, it reflects the opinion of the world's leading judicial body that the law requires the dismantling of the wall.
The Court was not asked broader questions, like the legality of the occupation itself, or whether Israel has any lawful basis for its military presence in the West Bank. The answers could only have been devastating to the Israeli Government and to its ally, the United States. Since June 5, 1967, the United States has concealed its knowledge that Israel attacked Egypt on that day with no legal cause. In the war that followed, Israel seized the West Bank when Jordan came to Egypt's defense. Israel's control of the West Bank is thus the product of aggression.
The Court did not go into the details of what happened in 1967. But it did say that sovereignty may not be acquired when territory is taken by military force. It quoted the UN Charter provision against aggression.
The sorry aftermath of the Court's issuance of its 2004 opinion is that the international community has not forced Israel to comply. A few segments of the wall have been found illegal by the Israeli Supreme Court, but most of the wall stands. The General Assembly's purpose in seeking the opinion was to guide the United Nations on how to deal with the construction. To date, the United Nations has done little, largely because the United States, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, obstructs any constructive action.
The Security Council is required under the UN Charter to deal with breaches of the peace. That was the principal plank of the UN Charter when it was drafted in 1945. But with respect to the 1967 war and the resulting occupations, the Security Council continues to sit on its collective hands. Were the international community to fulfill its responsibilities as specified by the International Court of Justice, we would be a step closer to peace.
John Quigley: The Wall Must Come Down

Hamas wing says targeting Israeli military sites

Published today (updated) 20/06/2012 16:51
An Israeli police explosives expert inspects the remains of a rocket, fired
by militants in Gaza, that landed in Kibbutz Kissufim outside the central
Gaza Strip on June 20, 2012. (Reuters/ Nir Elias)

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Hamas' armed wing said it fired a barrage of rockets, missiles and mortars at Israeli military targets on Wednesday in response to Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip.

The Al-Qassam Brigades said it fired 24 rockets, 10 missiles and nine mortars at Israeli army bases since dawn Wednesday.

"These operations are part of the repelling operations against the (Israeli) occupation assaults on Gaza Strip and West Bank, and as a response for the ongoing aggression against Palestinian people," the brigades said in a statement.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said at least 20 rockets were fired into southern Israel on Wednesday, without causing injuries.

A border policeman was wounded by a rocket on Tuesday night, she said. A rocket fired from Gaza had exploded inside a border police base in south Israel.

Israel has killed eight Palestinians in airstrikes and tank shelling on the Gaza Strip since Monday, including two Hamas militants.

Hamas joined in the hostilities on Tuesday, for the first time in over a year. The Al-Qassam Brigades usually holds its fire under an unofficial truce and Hamas in the past has discouraged smaller militant groups from firing at Israel.

Israel says it holds Hamas responsible for all attacks from the Gaza Strip.

Fawzi Barhoum, a Hamas spokesman, said Tuesday that Israel's attacks prompted the group's military wing "to take a firm stance" and launch rockets.

The Al-Mujahedin Brigades, the armed wing of the Al-Mujahedin movement, said in a statement that it fired 12 rockets at Israeli targets on Wednesday.

The Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades -- the military wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine -- said it fired two rockets across the border in a joint operation with the Shuhada Al-Aqsa - Karama army.

The Popular Resistance Committees' Nasser Salah al-Din Brigades said it launched two rockets into Israel and the Abdul Qader Husseini Brigades said it fired a grad rocket toward Ashkelon.
 Maan News Agency

Cross Border Fire Goes Into Third Day

 by Circarre Parrhesia - IMEMC & Agencies Report post
Cross border fire has continued on Wednesday with Israeli media outlets reporting that approximately a dozen projectiles were fired from the Gaza Strip. Also, the State of Israel has reported that it has killed a fighter in Rafah.
Most of the projectiles fired fell in the Negev Desert, but two did fall inside town limits, Haaretz reports. No casualties or injuries were reported, although light damage was sustained to an building used for industrial purposes.

Following the attack from the Gaza Strip, Israeli Air Force planes shelled a motorcycle in Rafah killing it's rider. Israel told Reuters that the motorcyclist was involved in Monday's clash between fighters in the the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, and Israeli military.

This clash led to the death of two fighters and has subsequently been claimed by the newly formed Shura Council of Mujahideen in the Holy Land.

Reuters reports this group as a "fringe Islamist Salafi network" and the Israeli spokesperson's office claims to have received video footage from the group.

In related news, Egyptian Ambassasor to the Palestinian Authority, Yasser Othman, is working on restoring calm to the border region, the Ma'an News Agency reports.

Cross border fire has continued since Monday following months of relative calm. Following an attack on Monday, Israeli Air Force planes have repeatedly shelled the Gaza Strip leading to six deaths and scores of injuries.

The armed wings of numerous Palestinian political groups, including Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Peoples Front for the Liberation of Palestine, have responded by firing projectiles in to Israel leading to injuries to four soldiers.
International Middle East Media Center