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Dagelijks archief 20 augustus 2013

State of Israel Charged for “Crime of Genocide and War Crimes”, Kuala Lumpur Tribunal

Tribunal Hearing against Israel and General Amos Yaron280

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WHY is it that the murder of one man is considered a criminal act whereas the killing of hundreds of thousands of innocent people committed in wars, is not considered so? -Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, former Prime Minister of Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, 19 August 2013 – The Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal (KLWCT) will be hearing war crimes and genocide charges against Amos Yaron, a retired Israeli army general and the State of Israel from 21 to 24 August in Kuala Lumpur.

This is the first time that war crimes charges will be heard against the retired general and the State of Israel in compliance with due legal process. The Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission (KLWCC), having received complaints from victims from Palestine (Gaza and West Bank) and the Sabra – Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon, in 2012, investigated these complaints resulting in the institution of formal charges on war crimes against the accused.

The suffering of the Palestinian people have been well documented over the decades without any legal recourse being open to these people. Legal obstacles are placed in their path denying them the right to be heard. The international community too has failed to recognise their fundamental human right to be heard. The KLWCC founded in 2008 was established to fill this void and act as a peoples’ initiative to provide an avenue for such victims to file their complaints and let them have their day in a court of law.

Witnesses are scheduled to testify against the accused during the course of the tribunal hearing. Eyewitnesses of the Sabra – Shatila massacre will be testifying at the hearing and one of them include prominent surgeon and author Dr Ang Swee Chai. Other witnesses at the hearing will also include those from Gaza during the Operation Cast Lead 1 that resulted in the loss of numerous civilian lives and destruction of property where even children were victims.

Expert witness Paola Manduca, a retired Professor at University of Genoa, Italy who is an expert Geneticist will testify on the impact of weapons on reproductive health arising from the attacks in Gaza, especially to children. There will also be witnesses from the West Bank to testify on alleged Israeli state violence and atrocities against the Palestinian people.

The first charge against Amos Yaron for War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, and Genocide is as follows:

The defendant Amos Yaron perpetrated War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, and Genocide in his capacity as the Commanding Israeli General in military control of the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Israeli occupied Lebanon in September of 1982 when he knowingly facilitated and permitted the large-scale Massacre of the Residents of those two camps in violation of the Hague Regulations on Land Warfare of 1907; the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949; the 1948 Genocide Convention; the Nuremberg Charter (1945), the Nuremberg Judgment (1946), and the Nuremberg Principles (1950); customary international law, ‘jus cogens’, the Laws of War, and International Humanitarian Law.

The other charge, which is against the State of Israel for the Crime of Genocide and War Crimes, is as follows:

From 1948 and continuing to date, the State of Israel (hereafter ‘the Defendant’) carried out against the Palestinian people a series of acts namely killing, causing serious bodily harm and deliberately inflicting conditions of life calculated to bring about physical destruction.

The conduct of the Defendant was carried out with the intention of destroying in whole or in part the Palestinian people. These acts were carried out as part of a manifest pattern of similar conduct against the Palestinian people. These acts were carried out by the Defendant through the instrumentality of its representatives and agents.

Such conduct constitutes the Crime of Genocide under international law including the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide 1948 (‘the Genocide Convention’) in particular Article II and punishable under Article III of the said Convention. It also constitutes the crime of genocide as stipulated in Article 10 of the Charter of the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission.

Such conduct by the Defendant as an occupying power also violates customary international law as embodied in the Hague Convention of 1907 Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, and the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949. Such conduct also constitutes War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity under international law.

The trial will be held before the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal, which is constituted of eminent persons with legal qualifications.

The judges of the Tribunal will be headed by retired Malaysian Federal Court judge Tan Sri Dato Lamin bin Haji Mohd Yunus Lamin, who also served as an ad litem judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Republic of Yugoslavia.

The other judges in the Tribunal include notable names such as Mr Alfred Lambremont Webre, a Yale graduate, who authored several books on politics, Tunku Sofiah Jewa, practising lawyer and author of numerous publications on International Law, Prof Salleh Buang, former Federal Counsel in the Attorney-General Chambers and prominent author, Prof Emeritus Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi, prominent academic and professor of law, Michael Hourigan, an internationally renowned human rights lawyer and Prof Eric David, an International Humanitarian Law expert who was counsel at the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

The Tribunal will adjudicate and evaluate the evidence presented as in any court of law. The judges of the Tribunal must be satisfied that the charges are proven beyond reasonable doubt and deliver a reasoned judgement.

In the event the tribunal convicts any of the accused, the only sanction is that the name of the guilty will be entered in the Commission’s Register of War Criminals and publicised worldwide. The tribunal is a tribunal of conscience and a peoples’ initiative.

The prosecution for the trial will be lead by Prof Gurdial S Nijar, prominent law professor and author of several law publications and Prof Francis Boyle, leading American professor, practitioner and advocate of international law, and assisted by a team of lawyers.

The trial is open to the public and will be held on August 21-24, 2013 at the premises of the Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War (KLFCW) at 88, Jalan Perdana, Kuala Lumpur.

For further information, please contact

Dato’ Dr Yaacob Merican
Secretary General of the KLWCC Secretariat
Tel: +6012-227 8680

Ms Malkeet Kaur
Media Representative of KLWCC
malkeet@dbook.com.my
Tel: +6012-3737 886

About Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission (KLWCC)

The KLFCW established the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission (The Commission), to investigate cases of war crimes that have been neglected by established institutions such as the International Criminal Court. The Commission seeks to influence world opinion on the illegality of wars and occupation undertaken by major Western powers.

The aim of The Commission is thereby to hold perpetrators of war crimes accountable for their actions especially when relevant international judicial organs fail to do so.

The Commission

The commission’s function is to:
i) receive complaints from any victim(s) of any conflict on:

(a) Crimes against peace
(b) Crimes against humanity
(c) Crimes of genocide
(d) War crimes

ii) investigate the same and prepare a report of its findings. To further call for more evidence or where The Commission is satisfied to recommend prosecution

The Legal Team

The legal team’s aim is to present the complaints of victim(s) of any conflict and to act on the recommendation of The Commission’s report and to frame charges and prosecute accused person(s).

The Tribunal

The Tribunal shall adjudicate on the charges filed against the accused person(s) The applicable standard of proof shall be beyond reasonable doubt.

About the Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War (KLFCW)

Malaysia’s fourth Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad founded the Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War (KLFCW), a non-governmental organisation established under the laws of Malaysia on 12 March 2007.

The main objectives of the Foundation, as stated in its Statutes are, inter alia:

1.    To undertake all necessary measures and initiatives to criminalise war and energise peace;

2.    To provide relief, assistance and support to individuals and communities who are    suffering from the effects of war and armed conflict wherever occurring and without discrimination on the grounds of nationality, racial origin, religion, belief, age, gender or other forms of impermissible differentiations;

3.    To promote the education of individuals and communities suffering from the effects of war or armed conflict;

4.    To foster schemes for the relief of human suffering occasioned by war or armed conflict;

5.    To provide for mechanisms or procedures in attainment of the above purposes.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

Zionists massacred Bedouins in 1948, threaten them again today

Palestinians protest the Prawer Plan, which will forcibly displace tens of thousands from the Naqab.

In September 1948, a Zionist army truck forcibly rounded up 14 Palestinian Bedouinfarmers near al-Araqib in the Naqab (Negev), drove them to an abandoned home, and then shot them at point blank range.

Since 15 July this year, Israeli border and riot police have arrested more than forty Palestinians, mostly youth, in Bir al-Saba (Beersheba), Sakhnin, Kfar Kanna and Wadi Araduring protests against the so-called Prawer Plan that will forcibly displace up to 40,000 Bedouin.

Although 65 years separate both events, what motivated them remains the same. This is why the Prawer Plan has been called a “second” Nakba, as its intentions are similar to the Palestinian catastrophe of 1947-49 that saw the expulsion of approximately 750,000 Palestinians.

However, to call it a “second” Nakba is inaccurate.

Since the State of Israel was founded, its government has constantly focused on displacing and dispossessing Palestinians in order to free the land for continued Zionist settlement and expansion. The Prawer Plan is not a renewal of an old catastrophe: it is characteristic of ongoing colonialism. This means that the Nakba is a continuing phenomenon rather than limited to a certain time period.

Local residents say the al-Araqib massacre of 1948 was motivated by the desire to instill fear and prompt their flight.

The expulsion of Palestinians was a planned policy, as documented by the Israeli historianIlan Pappé in his book The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine.

The ethnic cleansing operations in the Naqab began in July 1948 and resulted in 90 percent of the original population remaining outside what became Israel.

Executed

According to eyewitness testimony, in September 1948, an Israeli army leader notorious for regularly harassing Palestinian Bedouin, and known by the psuedonym Moshe al-Khawaja, patrolled the area around al-Araqib with a band of other armed Zionists.

They forced 14 young and middle-aged Bedouin men who were working their fields onto a truck, and transported them to the recently-abandoned home of the refugee Odeh al-Qawasemeh.

There, the Bedouin men were summarily executed and their bodies were dumped inside this bayekah, a house made from mud and stone.

The al-Araqib massacre was written about in the local Naqab-based Arabic press by Saqr Abu Sa’alouq and in Ibrahim Abu Jaber’s 2004 Encyclopedia of Nakba Injury. Most testimonies of the massacre that have been published were eyewitness accounts.

Eyewitnesses

In April 2011, I met with eyewitness Mohammed (Abu Shahd) Abu Jabr, an 83-year-old man living in Rahat, a government-planned township. At the time of the massacre he was a youth, and lived half a kilometer from Odeh al-Qawasemeh. He participated in the burials.

In December 2011, I met with eyewitness Ibrahim Hussein Abu al-Tayyif, whose father was killed. On a number of occasions, throughout the same year, I met with Nuri al-Oqbi, who although was not an eyewitness, was a young boy living in al-Araqib at the time.

Eyewitness Mubarak Mohammed al-Turi watched the massacre unfold from a distance, from the area of al-Fukhari. He said he saw how the army held each victim with his hands apart while a crew member then shot each person — at point blank range — at the door of the house. The bodies were then flung inside.

Eyewitness Ali Shariqi al-Turi, who carried the dead bodies on camel-back to their burial, testified that bullets were concentrated in the head, neck and chest of the victims. The heavy rain meant that some burials took place on the second day. The Zionist forces are also reported to have killed livestock in the same area.

Those killed in the massacre was a member from the Abu Solb family, Abu Rgeig, brothers Jaddou Hassan Abu Shbeith and Ali Hassan Abu Shbeith, Rizq Abu Zbeideh, Salem Mubarak al-Greineh, al-Asmar Salem Abu Hameiseh, the brothers Qadr and Salem abu al-Husus, Hussein Mahmood Abu al-Tayyif, Khalil Mustafa Abu Zayd al-Turi, Khalil Mohammed al-Malahi, Sliman Jibril Abu Jaber and Mohammed al-Qawasemeh. The identity of the fourteenth victim is unknown. The complete list is from Mohammed (Abu Shahd) Abu Jabr in Rahat, as well as from the two original accounts in Arabic from Abu Sa’alouq and Abu Jaber’s research.

The victims were from several different Bedouin tribes, including the Asheerah, Abu Jgeem, Abu Labbeh, al-Oqbi and al-Huzzayyel tribes.

Two particular military decisions shed light on how the event unfolded. The first was an official move to target farmers with specific orders to use firepower to prevent Palestinians from harvesting, collecting crops or picking olives.

Secondly, in late September 1948, the 51st and 53rd battalions of another Zionist militia, the Yiftach, were ordered to ethnically cleanse the area northwest of Route 40 (the principal artery leading into the Naqab), until the boundary with Gaza, of “unfriendly” Bedouin tribes. Al-Araqib was directly in the crosshairs.

Following the 1948 massacre, many families fled out of fear. The remaining residents were driven off their land in 1951 upon military government order that the land be used for military training purposes.

Israel then expropriated the land under the Land Acquisition Law of 1953. While a few families continued to live and farm in al-Araqib with the permission of the military, most of the families settled in Rahat, the largest Bedouin “development town” in present-day Israel.

Sleeping in cemetery

In the mid 1990s, a number of families returned to their lands in al-Araqib and began farming there. In 2002, Israel responded by demolishing homes and spraying the agricultural land with Roundup, a herbicide manufactured by the US corporation Monsanto.

On 27 July 2010, the entire village was demolished, displacing 300 community members. Since then, the village has been levelled more than fifty times. The handful of families that remain in al-Araqib sleep in the cemetery, believing “the dead will protect the living.”

Today, the Prawer Plan seeks to clarify Palestinian Bedouin land ownership in the Naqab.

Israel depicts the initiative as “beneficial” for Bedouin economic and social development. In truth, it will destroy three dozen villages, and sever the historical ties of the community to their land.

The displaced communities will then be forced to live in overcrowded and underfunded “development towns.” The plan stipulates that Bedouin land west of Route 40 will not be considered in the arrangement, having the same effect as the 1948 order to ethnically cleanse Bedouin northwest of Route 40.

The Prawer Plan treats the deep Palestinian roots in the Naqab as irrelevant. Pre-1948 Bedouin proofs of ownership and possession of land such as bills of sale, leasing agreements and tax records are inadmissible as evidence.

History denied

Palestinian history is being also denied. Most Israeli history books do not recognize events such as the al-Araqib massacre. This whittling away of Palestinian history has been referred to as “memoricide” by Pappé.

The Israeli archives deliberately hide knowledge of Nakba-era massacres on security grounds; historians estimate there to be at least a hundered smaller massacres besides the ten major ones, such as Deir Yassin, familiar to those who have studied Palestinian history.

Whenever community activists have argued that the Nakba is ongoing, the Israeli authorities have responded with violence.

One of the first persons from whom I learned about the al-Araqib massacre was a spokesperson for the village, Dr. Awad Abu Freih. He has been accused by the police of inciting murder and terrorism. He is regularly brought in for questioning by the police.

“They use all means to get their way … from sexual assault blackmail, financial blackmail, blackmail on your life, blackmail related to your kids, your future,” he said.

On 15 July, during the protest against the Prawer Plan in Sakhnin, social activist and lawyer Fathiyya Hussein and her two children, one a minor, were violently arrested by the police (“Israel: Excessive force against protesters,” Human Rights Watch, 18 July 2013).

After beating Fathiyya’s elder son Mohannad, the police dragged his limp body across the intersection and loaded him onto a police vehicle. Fathiyya herself was arrested when she approached four police officers who were physically assaulting her underage son. The police arrested her by force. “Now let’s break her hand, give me your hand so we can break it,” they said.

Brutality

At the station, the police severely beat a detainee, leaving him with a swollen eye, having mistaken him for her son, Mohannad. Fathiyya believes her son was specifically targeted because of his father’s political work as general secretary of the Balad political party, which represents Palestinian citizens of Israel. What stood out for her throughout her detention was the hate and brutality in the police’s physical and verbal abuse.

Youth activist Khaled Anabtawi notes how the community’s attempt to shut down streets and halt traffic in anti-Prawer protests is of particular concern to the authorities. Village spokesperson Abu Freih has also said that the security forces began to harass him only after a protest scheduled for al-Araqib resulted in jamming Route 40.

When the Palestinian community shuts down a major road it disrupts the flow of regular Israeli life, including the state’s ability to move its military and police. Further, it brings a previously unknown issue to the public consciousness, one inexorably linked to the Nakba and this threatens to reverse the memoricide that ongoing colonialism works hard to realize.

Fathiyya Hussein has asked, “How else to explain the police inaction to when Tel Aviv’sAyalon [freeway] was shut down by protesters of the [predominantly Jewish] social justice movement only a day earlier?”

The violence of Israeli “security” forces in recent years bears many similarities to those of Moshe al-Khawaja’s rag-tag crew of marauders in the 1940s.

The Nakba, then, is not about the past. It is a catastrophe that has never stopped.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

Gaza’s only exit to the outside world is closed in front of students and patients

Palestinian elderly people dragging their luggage and returning back home after hearing of the closure of Rafah border

Palestinian elderly people dragging their luggage and returning back home after hearing of the closure of Rafah border

I left very early in the morning with my youngest sister Tamam, heading to the Rafah border crossing with her to give her as much moral support as I could.  Having experienced what can only be described as the torture of waiting at the border previously, I know very well how much of a nightmare going there is.

Tamam returned home from Turkey after 9 months of studying Turkish Language there. About a year ago, she earned a scholarship to study for her BA in journalism in Ankara.  After enjoying three weeks of her presence at home, the time had finally come for her to return to Ankara, as her summer vacation is about to end and she has to go through many procedures in order to register for the first semester of her undergraduate studies.

In fact, she was scheduled to leave through Rafah border yesterday. Hearing of the crowds who have been trying to cross in vain for days- if not for weeks, and the restrictions that Egypt imposed on Rafah border, led us to decide to stay at home. A few more hours of sleeping would be worth more to us than the hours we would have wasted if we had gone to the border. Yesterday the Palestinian side allowed five buses in but Egypt allowed only one.

Today we decided to go, hoping that she would be fortunate enough to cross the border. As we were pulling her luggage into the car, we started laughing while mocking the dark situation we have to go through, while knowing deep inside that we will eventually have to return back home.  But we insisted to go and see the situation with our own eyes. It was hard to imagine to what extent the border situation and the travelers’ crisis is getting worse, especially during the difficult times that Egypt is going through.

My sister didn’t realize that a normal decision like returning home for a visit may threaten her to lose her scholarship and keep her locked inside Gaza. She didn’t know that she should have considered such a thought a thousand times before making up her mind. Such a decision is supposed to be normal in a normal situation, but not in our case, which is very far from being normal.

As we arrived at the hall where travelers gather in hope to hear their names called out so they can ride the bus that drives them inside the border, we were shocked to see the numerous people waiting already there. Some people had been waiting since sunrise and had been trying to cross for over a week. Most of them were students traveling for educational purposes or patients leaving for medical reasons.

I shot this photo inside the Rafah hall where the travellers wait to hear their names called out

I shot this photo inside the Rafah hall where the travellers wait to hear their names called out

The scenes of the children who were lying down and sleeping on chairs and those of elderly people who could barely stand on their feet were the most heartbreaking. Elderly people were shouting at the police which was forming a fence in front of the travel coordination offices. They were powerless and had nothing to say or do, but were trying their best to keep people’s anger and frustration in control and to maintain some semblance of discipline.

We were ashamed of complaining about anything, just sitting and watching people huffing and puffing. We met people who have been trying to cross for about two weeks.

At about 1 pm, the police said via speakers, “We ask everyone to return back home. We received a notice that Rafah border is completely closed and not even a single Palestinian will be able to cross due to the killing of 22 Egyptian soldiers in Sinai. We don’t know when the border will re-open. Keep following the Internal Ministry Website for more information.”

I expected people to rebel and break the police fence and turn the hall into chaos. But they just turned their backs, dragged their luggage and went home. I heard many saying, “at least they finally said something. At least we didn’t have to wait until sunset.” For many people this scenario has been happening for many days, so they expected the same to be repeated again and again.

My sister has expressed her experience in few moving words she wrote on her Facebook page. The following is my translation of her words.

“I dragged my luggage very early in the morning to Gaza’s only exit to the outside world, though I was certain that I wouldn’t be able to cross. Dad stood watching me from a distance and finally he stepped closer and uttered one sentence, “May Allah ease your way my dear”. I cried a lot. More accurately, we both cried. I wondered why I cried despite having a strong desire to leave this city after a 3-week visit which was more tiring than joyful, while worrying about Rafah border’s situation. This complicated city is becoming more choking. It makes us weep out of happiness and sorrow. It restricts our freedom. It forces us to learn to adapt to the inadaptable. At this point of frustration and thinking negatively, I can’t think of any reason why we’re so attached to this mysterious city. Nevertheless, one can’t but be always longing to return to Gaza.”

My sister’s flight is scheduled to leave from Cairo to Istanbul on Thursday. It is very likely that she will miss her flight, like many other Palestinians living in Gaza.

Why should Tamam or any other traveler living in Gaza pay the price for anything happening in the neighboring countries? How many dreams are going to be crashed or how many more patients are going to die before we have a permanent and a secure way to travel? Will we ever live a normal life? This situation is utterly insane and inhumane.  Collective punishment policies must end.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

Egypt’s former vice president Mohamed ElBaradei faces charges over ‘breaching national trust’

File picture of Mohamed ElBaradei

Cairo: Nobel laureate Mohamed ElBaradei, who recently quit as Egypt’s interim vice president and left the country in the face of deadly crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood supporters by military-led government, may face charges of “breaching national trust” in a court in Cairo.

The Nasr City misdemeanour court today decided that on September 19 it will consider the case filed against ElBaradei for “betraying” the public by resigning on August 14, a charge that could carry an 1,430 dollars fine if he is convicted.

The case, filed by Sayed Ateeq, head of the Criminal Law Department at Helwan University’s Faculty of Law, charges 71-year-old ElBaradei with breach of “national trust”, state-run Al-Ahram Online reported.

According to Ateeq, ElBaradei had not presented to the government, the presidency or the revolutionary forces any other alternatives to dispersing the sit-ins, as well as disregarded the “terrorist crimes” committed by Brotherhood.

He charged that ElBaradei’s resignation created an impression to the global community that the Egyptian government used excessive force in dispersing the sit-ins by Brotherhood supporters who have been protesting against ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on July 3 by the army.

“ElBaradei was not selected as vice president for his person, but as a representative of the National Salvation Front and revolutionary forces,” and that he had resigned without consulting with those he represented, Ateeq said.

ElBaradei, a former chief of International Atomic Energy Agency, is currently in Austria with his family after leaving Egypt last week.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

IOF kidnap two brothers of hunger strikers in Israel jails

 

 

AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) kidnapped at dawn Monday brothers of Palestinian administrative detainees to pressure them to end their hunger strike.

Local sources said that the IOF raided the houses of hunger strikers Adel Hureibat and Ayman Atbish in Dura town, south of Al-Khalil city, and kidnapped two of their brothers.

They added that the IOF also stormed the house of prisoner Imad Batran in Idna town, south of Al-Khalil, to kidnap his brother, but he was not at home.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

Israel and Palestinians hold secret meeting

Ramallah: Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met secretly in occupied Jerusalem on Tuesday, a senior Palestinian official said, a week after US-brokered peace talks were relaunched in the holy city.

“A meeting was held today between the Palestinian delegation, headed by Saeb Erekat and Mohammad Shtayyeh, and the Israeli delegation of [Justice Minister] Tzipi Livni and Yitzhak Molcho,” the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Details of the discussions were not revealed, apparently consistent with a request from Washington last week for a strict news blackout.

The official added that US Secretary of State Kerry’s special envoy Martin Indyk met Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas on Monday to keep up pressure to continue negotiations “despite continued colony building, which is the biggest obstacle to talks carrying on.”

Talks held last Wednesday, the fruit of months of intensive US diplomatic efforts to bring the two sides back to the negotiating table after a nearly three-year break, were held under a shroud of secrecy at an undisclosed location in occupied Jerusalem.

Abbas said all key issues were discussed but declined to elaborate because of the agreed news blackout.

The meetings were overshadowed, however, by a new row over Israeli colonist plans for the occupied Palestinian territories.

In the run-up to the talks, Israel announced plans to build more than 2,000 new Jewish colony homes in annexed east Jerusalem and elsewhere in the occupied West Bank, infuriating Palestinian officials.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon told reporters on a visit to the West Bank town of Ramallah that he was “deeply troubled by Israel’s continued colonist activity in the West Bank, including east Jerusalem.

“Settlement activity is deepening the Palestinian people’s mistrust in the seriousness on the Israeli side towards achieving peace.

“It will ultimately render a two-state solution impossible,” he warned.

But Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu played down the colonies issue at a meeting with Ban later the same day.

“The root cause (of the conflict) was and remains the persistent refusal to recognise the Jewish state in any boundary,” he said. “It doesn’t have to do with the colonies- that’s an issue that has to be resolved, but this is not the reason that we have a continual conflict.”

Peace talks broke down just weeks after they began in September 2010 over the issue of colony building.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

Sluit je aan bij de karavaan!

By Marianna Laarif

Bismillâhi Rahmâni Rahîm, Alhamdulillâhi Rabbil ‘Âlamîn was-salâtu was-salâmu ‘alâ nabiyyinâ Muhammadin wa ‘alâ ahlihi wa ashâbihi aj’ma’în amma’ ba’d.

In de Naam van Allâh, de Erbarmer, de Meest Barmhartige.

As-salâm ‘alaykum warahmatullâhi wa barakâtuh beste broeder of zuster,

Inshâ’Allâh verkeer je in goede staat van gezondheid & imân. We vragen ons af of de vastende persoon na de Ramadân zal blijven zoals hij/zij tijdens de Ramadân was. We vragen ons af of degene die tijdens de Ramadân vastte, Qur’ân reciteerde, liefdadigheid spendeerde, ’s nachts bad en du’a verrichtte, dit ook na de Ramadân zal doen, of zal hij/zij een ander pad volgen? We bedoelen hiermee het pad van de shaytân, waardoor hij/zij zonden begaat en dingen doet die de Meest Barmhartige, Meest Genadevolle ontevreden stemmen.

Als een moslim het geduld bewaart om na de Ramadân goede daden te verrichten, dan is dit een teken dat zijn vasten geaccepteerd is door zijn Heer, de Verlener van zegeningen. Als men er niet in slaagt om na de Ramadân goede daden te verrichten, en hij de weg van de shaytân volgt, dan is dit een teken van vernedering, gebrekkigheid, lage status en beroofd zijn van de hulp van Allâh, zoals de geleerde al-Hasan al-Basrî heeft gezegd:

“Zij waren niet meer belangrijk voor Allâh, dus begingen zij zonden. Als zij iets betekend hadden voor Hem, dan zou Hij hen beschermd hebben. Wanneer iemand onbelangrijk wordt voor Allâh, zal Allâh hem niet langer eren.”

Allâh de Verhevene zegt hierover (interpretatie van de betekenis):

“En wie door Allâh vernederd wordt; voor hem zijn er dan geen eerbewijzers.” {Qs 22:18}

Het is verbazingwekkend dat je tijdens de Ramadân sommige mensen ziet die vasten en ’s nachts bidden en uitgeven in liefdadigheid en de Heer der Werelden vereren, en zodra de maand ten einde komt, verandert hun aard volledig en krijgen ze een slechte houding tegenover hun Heer, de Heerser, de Heilige, Degene die vrij is van alle tekortkomingen. Bij Allâh, hoe vreselijk is het wanneer mensen Allâh alleen in de Ramadân kennen.

De moslim zou van de Ramadân een kans moeten maken om een nieuwe bladzijde om te slaan door berouw te tonen, zich tot Allâh te richten, te volharden in het aanbidden van Allâh en zich altijd bewust te zijn van het feit dat Allâh te allen tijde toekijkt. Het doel waarvoor Allâh iedereen geschapen heeft, was ongetwijfeld om Hem Alléén te aanbidden, zonder partner of deelgenoot. Dit werd op de mooiste manier bereikt tijdens de Ramadân, toen we de mensen in groepen en individueel naar de Huizen van Allâh zagen gaan. We zagen hen ernaar streven om de verplichte gebeden op tijd uit te voeren en om liefdadigheid te geven, concurrerend met elkaar in het verrichten van goede daden.

De geleerden hebben gezegd:

“Onder de tekenen van aanvaarding (van goede daden) is dat Allâh een goede daad op laat volgen door een andere, want de goede daad zegt: “Mijn zuster, mijn zuster!” En de slechte daad zegt ook: “Mijn zuster, mijn zuster!” Als Allâh het vasten in de Ramadân van een persoon geaccepteerd heeft en hij/zij van deze periode van (spirituele)training geprofiteerd heeft en standvastig is gebleven in het gehoorzamen van Allâh, dan heeft hij/zij zich aangesloten bij de karavaan van degenen die standvastig zijn gebleven en geantwoord hebben aan Allâh.”

Allâh de Verhevene zegt hierover (interpretatie van de betekenissen):

“Voorwaar, degenen die zeggen: “Onze Heer is Allâh,” en die vervolgens standvastig zijn; over hen zullen de Engelen neerdalen (en zeggen): “Wees niet bevreesd en niet treurig, en wees verheugd met het Paradijs dat aan jullie is beloofd. Wij zijn jullie helpers tijdens het wereldse leven en in het Hiernamaals en voor jullie is daarin wat jullie zielen verlangen en voor jullie is daarin wat jullie vragen.” {Qs 41:30-31}

Dit standvastig zijn zou voort moeten duren van de ene Ramadân tot de volgende. Vanaf het moment dat de gelovige de vroegste leeftijd van beoordelingsvermogen bereikt, totdat hij zijn laatste adem uitblaast, zou hij zich aan moeten sluiten bij de karavaan van degenen die standvastig zijn en aan boord moeten gaan van het schip van verlossing. Hij zou in de schaduw van “Lâ ilâha ill-Allâh” moeten blijven, genietend van de zegeningen van Allâh.

Vergeet niet om voor deze goede daden en deze steun van Allâh te zorgen, en laat het niet uitgewist worden door slechte daden. Streef er dus naar om goedheid en geluk op jouw weg te zaaien en om degenen die standvastig blijven (in de islâm) gezelschap te houden en om Allâh en Zijn Boodschapper en het Huis van het Hiernamaals na te streven, waar tegen jou gezegd zal worden:

Ontvang blijde tijdingen van het Paradijs zo wijd als de hemelen en de aarde, voorbereid voor de godvrezende, omdat je geantwoord hebt aan de oproep van Allâh!”

We vragen Allâh, die ons heeft gezegend met de Islâm, bij Zijn Schone Namen en Verheven Eigenschappen om ons te zegenen met leiding, godvrezendheid en aanvaarding van onze goede daden. Moge Hij ons helpen om te volharden in het verrichten van goede daden en om standvastig te blijven. Volharding in het verrichten van goede daden is één van de beste manieren om dichter bij Allâh de Almachtige te komen.

Subh’ânaka Allâhumma wa bih’amdik, ash-hadu allâ illâha illâ anta, astaghfiruka wa atuba ilayk.

Wa ‘alaykum salâm warahmatullâh,

Short Analysis of Egypt’s Political Pressures ~ by @KawtherSalam

رأي  وتحليل  المحرر السياسي لما يجري في مصر

DSC_2635The territorial ambitions of the zionists are no secret as they have been published for at least 100 years, most of the political problems of the countries and nations near israel are derived from these ambitions and the machinations of the zionists and their allies perpetrated in the interest of fulfilling them. The whole bloody spectacle called the “Arab Spring” can be seen and explained in this context, and the events in Egypt during the last few years are no exception. Egypt has been subservient to western/zionist interests at least since the campaign of Napoleon, and this has been more obvious since the time of Nasser in the 1950s.

Egypt’s current and historical political weaknesses are well understood and exploited by the zionists. Egypt has a population of over 85 million according to current estimates published by the CIA World Factbook. While Egypt is a big country at about 1 million Km2, most of this surface is desert and the majority of the population lives in the Nile Delta and narrow valley of fertile earth on both sides of the Nile, which has a maximum width of perhaps no more than 100 Km. and far less in most parts. The narrow band of fertile terrain could perhaps sustain 30-40 million inhabitants but certainly not Egypt’s current population. The difference must be procured via commerce and other means. “Other means” are for example the sale of natural gas to israel at very disadvantageous conditions which was entered in by Mubarak, or the yearly military support money which comes from the USA in return for compliance with israel’s wishes. Part of this money goes towards paying salaries and importing food which is distributed to the poor.

AP

Pic. Credit: AP

A second weakness is Egypt’s main source of income, tourism, as it depends completely on a stable political situation. An undeniable power unto itself in Egypt is the Muslim Brotherhood, propagators of a radical interpretation of Islam which makes its many members readily exploitable when the religious sensibilities of this for the most part scantly educated population are inflamed. These sensibilities can be readily exploited simply by reminding the religious masses that women are not supposed to show skin in public, as western women in the resorts and beaches of the red sea do so often. Under such a cover of inflamed religiosity it becomes easy to enact an atrocity whereby “terrorists” execute 25 policemen.

Third, there is the matter of over-population, already mentioned: In 2008 wheat prices increased to a point where many Egyptians were unable to afford buying food, and riots ensued. This situation was promptly alleviated by increased imports of wheat and stabilization of the prices of basic supplies. Egypt’s ruling regime can not risk losing the US military aid, what explains why it does not retaliate when israelis shoot Egyptian soldiers across the border just for fun. It also explains why Egypt cooperates with westerners to keep Gaza in its condition of a concentration camp, why Egypt does not give entry visas to Palestinians, why Egypt keeps the fraudulent peace accord with israel upright or why Egypt entered into an enormously disadvantageous agreement over sale of natural gas to Israel despite all these issues immense impopularity with the Egyptian population: it is what the zionists want, and if the Israelis complain, Egypt risks losing the military aid from the USA, what would have the consequences of ousting the current westernized elite in power, major riots with several hundreds of thousands dead, and a hunger catastrophe of major proportions.

In the context of israeli interests, it is probably advantageous to have an Egypt as neighbor which has a regime strong enough to suppress the animosity felt by most of its population towards Israel but this state can only be seen as temporarily good. Taking in account that the USA and the EU will probably become insolvent very soon, the cheaper alternative would be to break up (balkanize) Egypt along geographic, social or religious lines. A first attempt to bring Egypt on a course more amenable to zionist wishes was the ouster of the Mubarak regime, which went in the wrong direction with the accession to power of the Muslim Brotherhood – this putsch was orchestrated in Washington, together with the atrocities in Tunisia, Libya and Syria, by the usual bunch of zionist war criminals at AEI, AIPAC and other such dumps. The latest takeover by the military, which had allowed the installation as vice-president of the untalented and universally reviled Al-Baradei, who fled at the first sign of danger, has equally been machinated in Washington that much is clear.

What is not yet clear is whose interests are being held up by General Al-Sisi and the people around him, but it is unlikely that Israel stands to lose much due to the blood bath they are putting in scene.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

The Dead Sea: Turning Occupation Into Profits

Israel’s total control of the Jordan Valley and Dead Sea is depriving the Palestinian economy of income and jobs, while bringing in big profits for the occupation.

A beach on the Dead Sea operated by the illegal Israeli settlement of Kalia. (Photograph: Shamus Slaunwhite)
A beach on the Dead Sea operated by the illegal Israeli settlement of Kalia. 

Like many visitors to Palestine, I wished to swim in the Dead Sea, a geographical marvel whose mineral-rich waters and mud are renowned for their health benefits. I got what I wished for – I floated in the salty waters, and covered myself with mud – but I also did something not wished for – I supported Israel’s ongoing occupation of Palestine. You see, I didn’t realize before arriving at its shores that the part of the Dead Sea located within the borders of the West Bank is completely controlled by Israel.

More specifically, the West Bank territory bordering the Dead Sea, along with the rest of the Jordan Valley, is classified by Israel as “Area C”. This means Israeli military and civil authorities control security, planning, and construction in the area, and Palestinians living and working there may not build or renovate anything without first getting permission from Israel. Therefore, if Palestinians wanted to build a resort along a strip of Dead Sea coastline, they would first have to ask Israel. But instead of allowing Palestinians to develop Dead Sea tourism on territory that is lawfully theirs, Israel has granted the illegal settlements a monopoly.

These illegal settlements and their Dead Sea tourism facilities are built on Palestinian land that Israel has appropriated using different methods. Following its occupation of the West Bank in 1967, Israel declared lands “closed military areas”, “nature reserves”, “abandoned property”, or “State Land”. For example, the settlement of “Mitzpe Shalem”, among others, was established in 1970 on “State Land”. This settlement now operates a swimming beach and a “mineral beach”.
Israel, by granting illegal settlements the sole right to develop tourism facilities on the West Bank’s Dead Sea coastline, has starved Palestine of income and employment.

In a report titled “The economic costs of the Israeli occupation for the occupied Palestinian territory” produced by the Palestinian Ministry of National Economy in cooperation with the Applied Research Institute- Jerusalem (ARIJ), the Dead Sea is identified as “arguably the most valuable touristic resource” in Area C. The researchers estimated that if the West Bank Dead Sea area came under full Palestinian control, the development of tourism facilities would contribute USD 144 million to the Palestinian economy. In other words, the Israeli occupation is depriving the Palestinian economy of 144 million USD.

While the Palestinians in the Jordan Valley face harsh economic conditions, Dead Sea enterprises run by Israeli settlers are generating healthy profits. For example, the Israeli settlement of “Mitzpe Shalem” is home to Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories Ltd., a company that extracts minerals and mud from occupied territory for the manufacture of cosmetics. The Palestinian human rights NGO Al-Haq published a report titled “Pillage of the Dead Sea” which states that Ahava generated revenues of 142 million USD in 2007; Bloomberg reported that, in 2012, Ahava’s sales rose to 160 million USD. The Al-Haq report, however, describes how these profits have exacted a heavy toll on the Dead Sea environment.

Al-Haq reports that Israel’s complete control over West Bank water resources has allowed the Israeli settlements to develop water-intensive agricultural operations that have severely reduced the flow of the Jordan River. Additionally, Al-Haq cites unsustainable mining practices in Israeli settlements as contributing to the declining Dead Sea water level. Also, the Dead Sea and surrounding area are polluted by the settlements’ domestic, agricultural, and industrial activities.

Al-Haq notes that Israel’s practices in the occupied Dead Sea area violate international humanitarian and human rights law because “they favour Israeli economic interests while denying the Palestinian people their right to self-determination.” Also, according to Al-Haq, Israel has been violating its obligations as an occupying power and is even committing the war crime of pillage by providing financial benefits to Dead Sea settlers and by granting permission for Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories Inc. “to mine and manufacture products that utilize the mud extracted from the occupied Dead Sea area…”

At the unveiling of the joint Ministry of National Economy and ARIJ report in 2011, the Guardian newspaper quoted Palestine’s economy minister Hasan Abu Libdeh as saying that “[it] should be clear to the international community that one reason for Israel’s refusal to act in good faith as a partner for peace is the profits it makes as an occupying power.” And thanks to tourists who continue to flock to the Dead Sea, profits will continue to flow to the occupation’s coffers.

(Source / 20.08.2013)

How Asma was killed

 

Asma BeltajiAsma was killed by Egyptian military snipers last Wednesday

This video shows how Asmaa El Beltagi was assassinated. Note the man holding the yellow bag. We believe he pointed Asmaa out for the snipers.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=C525ZTX8-C0

Asma al-Beltaji… baby of Rabea Square and an icon of the revolution

One of the last things Asmaa said was: “Persist, victory will come soon. Do not leave the revolution to the army.”

This was Asmaa Al-Beltaji’s commandment the moment she was murdered, sources close to her say.

She was the daughter of the Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Al-Beltaji.

Asmaa stood next to her mother to aid victims at Rabea Al Adaweya square in Cairo during the army’s operation to disperse the sit-in there by force last Wednesday.

Due to her young age Asmaa, who was 17-years old, accompanied her mother. But her attitude and dreams reflected maturity. She continued to aid the injured until a treacherous bullet killed her.

Minutes before 10.30 Cairo time (8.30 GMT) on Wednesday morning, 14 August, Asmaa fell next to Rabea Al Adawiya podium when a sniper shot her in the chest and the back. This led to her death within a few minutes.

French features and Egyptian mind

Asmaa had angelic features. She had simple features or “French quiet” features as her friends had always told her. Her heart and mind were a hundred percent Egyptian. She showed revolutionary, intellectual maturity in spite of her young age. She participated in all demonstrations since the revolution of January 2011, whether organised by the Brotherhood or not.

Ethar Yousef, Asmaa’s best friend remembers the “Baby of Rabaa Al Adawiya,” and said to the Anadolu news agency that “Asmaa has encouraged me to always participate in the demonstrations even if they did not involve the Muslim Brotherhood because she believed the real danger is the return of military rule. Asmaa participated in the demonstration of Mohamed Mahmoud in Cairo in December 2011, and treated the wounded and injured.”

The Brotherhood refused to participate in the demonstrations against the ruling junta at the time, and described those who participated in the demonstrations as “thugs.”

Ethar explained: “Asmaa convinced me to participate in those events and told me it is important to stand against the return of the military, even if the Muslim Brotherhood did not do so.”

Asmaa, a senior high school student with a science major refused parliamentary elections under the supervision of the military council. Asmaa did not join the sit-in at Rabea Al Adawiya on June 28 because her main goal was to resist the rule of the military and not the return of President Mohamed Morsi. Therefore, she joined the sit- in when General Abdel Fattah Al Sisi announced the coup against Morsi on July 3rd. She did not leave the square for one day. She had the Quran with her at all times and from time to time she used to throw herself into her father’s arms, like a small kitten, for moral support her friend Ethar describes.

Many political forces, despite their different orientations, mourned Asmaa. The socialist leader Jihan Shaaban said about her “she was always present with us and was in the events of Mohamed Mahmoud at the centre of socialist studies with my daughter and girls their age to help the wounded and the demonstrators.”

Revolutionary and Hopeful

Ethar describes the last hours before Asmaa’s assassination and says: “She called me at the time of the dawn prayer to wake me up to perform the prayer. I asked her to return home and she told me she cannot miss the moment the army disperse the protestors so leave the matter to God.”

Asmaa was active. The last thing she wrote on her Facebook page was: “They killed us over night while in our prayers while they are the humiliated and fewer in number. So call God’s servants to come in numbers as the sea waves to support us.”

Her diary includes words that reflect her personality. She wrote: “Lord, let me be one of those who grant smiles to people, who weave threads of hope, be kind to the weak and supportive of orphans, who light candles in desolated roads, who ponder cosmic horizons and grow certainty, revolt in the face of injustice, whose hearts are always hopeful of your kindness.”

About Asmaa Shehata, a protester says: “The last time I saw Asmaa was an hour before her martyrdom. She collected and broke bricks and I moved the pieces. Then we reorganised the tasks and Asmaa went to check on the wounded.”

Sarah Sweilem, a friend of Asmaa’s, says that “Asmaa fell next to her mother covered in blood. The doctors tried to reassure her mother who did not believe what happened to her daughter. Asmaa is the only daughter among 3 brothers. Meanwhile doctors summoned Dr Al-Beltaji and informed him of her murder.”

Asmaa’s wedding

Witnesses say that Dr. El Beltagi, Asmaa’s father, told his wife that his dream came true and that “a night before she was murdered he saw Asmaa in a wedding dress and asked her: Is your wedding today? And she answered: Yes, in the afternoon”.

Asmaa who dreamed to study at the medical school and join the activities of the Global Relief, had encouraged her father to join the Freedom Flotilla journey on the Turkish Mavi Marmara ship which was attacked by Israel in the Mediterranean. Her friends say she hoped to accompany her father in the trip, despite her young age.

In spite of the strong connection between Asmaa and her father, he was unable to attend her last farewell where her funeral was performed from As Salam Mosque in Nasr City, Cairo, amid hundreds who joined the funeral and bid her farewell. Her brother Ammar Al-Beltaji led her funeral prayer while her mother chanted in a severe state of fatigue, “Free revolutionaries we shall continue the journey.” She called everyone to resist.

At the same time a number of activists and friends of Asmaa launched pages through social media websites to commemorate her while others revealed their intention to perform Umrah on behalf of Asmaa. A group of Palestinians performed the funeral prayer in Absentia in Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday.

(Source / 20.08.2013)