Israeli forces detain Palestinian woman in Hebron over alleged knife possession

Ibrahimi Mosque

Israeli soldiers stationed outside the Ibrahimi Mosque (File)

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman on Friday in the old city of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank, according to official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency.Wafa reported that a Palestinian woman was detained by Israeli forces for alleged possession of a knife.According to Wafa, the 32-year-old woman was detained after she was searched at the entrance of the Ibrahimi mosque in Hebron’s old city.Israeli forces have detained scores of Palestinians, many of the minors, for allegedly being in possession of knives following a spate of alleged and actual small-scale knife attacks by Palestinians that surged in the fall of 2015.Hebron in particular grew as the epicenter of upheaval, with a number of Palestinians having been shot while being detained at military checkpoints in the area.Eyewitnesses have also said in a number of cases that Israeli security forces planted knives on slain or imprisoned Palestinians to claim that they were acting in self-defense during a stabbing attack.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

Detainee Dies From Cancer After Being Denied Specialized Treatment

20 JAN
4:38 PM

The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee has reported that a detainee, who was recently diagnosed with cancer, and was not provided the essential urgently-needed treatment in Israeli prisons, has died Saturday.

In a joint statement, the Detainees’ Committee and the Palestinian Prisoners Society, said Hussein Hosni Atallah, 57, from the northern West Bank city of Nablus, died at Assaf Harofeh Israeli medical center.

They added that Atallah suffered from cancer in his lungs, spine, liver, pancreas and brain, and that despite his bad deteriorating health, he was never seen by a specialist until four months ago, when he was officially diagnosed.

Through its lawyer, the Palestinian Detainees’ Committee, filed many appeals for his early release, so that he can receive specialized care, but the prison authority refused despite official reports by a medical team from the International Red Cross, and the prison doctor, stressing on the seriousness of his condition.

The Palestinian Detainees Committee and the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society held Israel responsible for his death, especially for failing to provide him with medical checkups and specialized treatment, and denounced the Israeli authorities for refusing to release him to spend his final fays with his family, although he already served two-thirds of his sentence, and could have been released.

It is worth mentioning that Atallah was serving a 32-year prison sentence, and spent 21 years in prisons prior to his death.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

Syrian Coalition Officials Denounce Assaults by So-called ‘Salvation Government’ on SIG’s Offices

Officials in the Syrian Coalition condemned assaults by the so-called “Salvation Government”, which is affiliated with Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham militant group, on offices of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG). It stressed that the Salvation Government’s policies and practices contradict the goals of the Syrian Revolution for freedom, dignity, and transition to a pluralistic, democratic state.

Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Abdul Rahman Mustafa condemned violations being committed by Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham, a rebrand of the terrorist Al-Nusra Front. He pointed out that many international and human rights organizations documented war crimes committed by those organizations against civilians.

Mustafa underscored that SIG’s main task is the provision of services to civilians and the restoration of state institutions in line with the objectives of the Syrian revolution. He stressed that SIG is the only legitimate executive arm in liberated areas.

The so-called Salvation Government, with military assistance from Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham, closed SIG offices in the province of Idlib and faculties of Aleppo Free University located in the northern rural Idlib. Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham militants also seized a grain mill belonging to SIG in western rural Aleppo supplying around 40 bakeries with flour.

Member of the Coalition’s political committee Yasser Farhan said that assaults by the so-called Salvation Government and terrorist militias on SIG’s offices in Idlib have reflected negatively on civilians. He noted that such attacks have exacerbated the suffering of the civilian population resulting from the ongoing onslaught by Assad regime forces and Iranian militias on Idlib with Russian air support.

(Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies / 20.01.2018)

Injuries by IOF gunfire in West Bank clashes

Gunfire WB clashes

Three Palestinian youths were injured on Friday after the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) quelled the anti-settlement weekly march of Kafr Qaddum in Qalqilya which demands opening the village’s road that has been closed for 15 years now.

Popular resistance coordinator in Kafr Qaddum, Murad Shtewi, said that the IOF attacked the demonstrators with rubber-coated metal bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters injuring three young men who were treated in the field.

Shtewi added that dozens of Palestinians participated in the march, which was launched after Friday prayer, despite the stormy weather to express their rejection of the settlement and the recent US Jerusalem decision.

Two Palestinian youths and a child were injured by rubber-coated metal bullets during clashes with the IOF in al-Lubban al-Sharqiya village to the south of Nablus city.

The PIC reporter said that a six-year-old child was hit by a metal bullet in the eye while two other youths were injured in the violent clashes, pointing out that the IOF soldiers heavily fired tear gas canisters at the Palestinian citizens’ houses.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

4 Injuries by Israeli gunfire east of Gaza

Gunfire east of Gaza

Four Palestinians were wounded by Israeli gunfire during clashes that erupted on Friday afternoon with Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) at Gaza border.

Eyewitnesses said that a Palestinian youth was shot and injured in clashes that broke out near Karni crossing east of Gaza. Another man was wounded in similar clashes near Beit Hanoun crossing (Erez).

Two others were also shot and wounded near Nahal Oz site in the east. The injured were transferred to al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza.

The ongoing clashes have been continued for the seventh consecutive Friday in protest at the Israeli repeated violations and the US recognition of Occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

Israeli security control narrative on occupation in Arab-Israeli schools

Palestinian children attend class in a school in Jerusalem on 3 January 2018

The Shin Bet Israeli security services conducted operations in Arab-Israeli schools, censuring any critics of Israel for decades, Yedioth Ahronoth has revealed.

Confidential documents show that the Shin Bet has been cooperating with the Israeli Ministry of Education behind closed doors since 1948. According to the documents, the purpose of the interference was to “separate teachers and school principals and to frustrate the appointment of teachers who are considered anti-Israel”, stressing that “in many cases of dismissal, teachers were not aware of the real reason for their separation.”

The newspaper noted that in 1978 several members of the Shin Bet met with officials from the Ministry of Education in what was one of several private meetings. In later correspondence, the Shin Bet was seen to warn the ministry of “incitement” in Arab schools, pressing for greater control on the narrative being disseminated of the Israeli occupation.

Peace activist Salam Kedan: ‘I had no idea I was Palestinian’

The report also reveals some of the ways in which the Shin Bet worked in the education system in the Arab regions, specifying its involvement in the decision-making and employment issues for many years. Teachers suspected of being a threat to Israel’s security, were called “ineligible”.

The testimonies and documents obtained by the newspaper indicate that Israeli authorities have made great efforts to influence the education system in the Arab regions over the years.

Israel has sought to erode the identity of its Arab citizens in many ways, with strict media censorship keeping many unaware of the situation of those in the occupied terrorists. A recent bill also prevents any members of the Knesset, including Arab MKs associating with organisations that back the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Israeli parliamentarians discuss clause allowing ‘Jews only’ communities

(Source / 20.01.2018)

Newspapers Review: Dailies highlight search under rubble of homes destroyed in Jenin


RAMALLAH, January 20, 2018 (WAFA) – The Palestinian Arabic dailies highlighted on the front page of their Saturday issue the search under the rubble of three homes the Israeli army has demolished during its raid of Jenin two days ago.

The papers said the search for possible people buried under it has ended without discovering any anyone.

The Israeli army killed one person identified as Ahmad Ismail Jarrar, 31, during the raid and took his body away and left behind three homes destroyed and a fourth partially damaged.

The papers also highlighted the weekly anti-settlements protests in various areas of the occupied West Bank, which are usually attacked with strong force by the Israeli army leaving behind several cases of injuries from tear gas or rubber bullets and sometimes from live bullets.

The papers also reported on the damage the high wind and cold weather has left on the Palestinian cities and farmers.

Al-Quds said the US State Department has denied that its ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, a staunch pro-Israel and pro-settlements American diplomat, has moved his office to the US consulate in Jerusalem.

It also said that Washington froze $45 million in food aid to the Palestinians it had previously promised to provide through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). It had earlier cut $65 million from its annual contribution to UNRWA.

Al-Ayyam and al-Hayat al-Jadida quoted Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov saying that Russia’s call for a meeting between President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Moscow to push forward a peace process is still on the table.

Lavrov also criticized the cut in US aid to UNRWA, which he said will harm efforts to provide for the Palestinian refugees, as reported in al-Hayat al-Jadida, which quoted UNRWA Commission General saying the UN agency was victim to American political decisions.

It said US Vice President Mike Pence starts on Saturday an official visit to Egypt, Jordan and Israel.

Al-Quds said that the Israeli Magistrate Court in Jerusalem ruled in favor of fanatic Jewish settlers who petitioned it to demolish the third level of a Palestinian home in the Old City of Jerusalem. It said the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem colluded with the settlers to allow the demolition of a historic Old City structure to satisfy illegal settlers.

It said the Society of St. Yves, a legal rights center based in Jerusalem, was able to prevent Israeli seizure of large area of Palestinian land in Bethlehem.

It said Orthodox Syrians and Copts celebrated Epiphany at the Jordan River.

Al-Ayyam said an estimated 20,000 Muslims performed the Friday prayer at Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City in spite of the bad weather conditions.

Al-Quds said the preacher at the Mosque called for defending Jerusalem against Israeli plans to change its historic and traditional Arab character.

Al-Ayyam said it learned about a family in Rafah that killed one of its members after it found him guilty of collaborating with Israel in killing three Hamas’ al-Qassam Brigades leaders during the 2014 Israeli war on Gaza

(Source / 20.01.2018)

OCHA: IOF kills 4 Palestinians, injures 269 others

4 Pal's killed

The Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) killed four Palestinians and injured 269 others during the first two weeks of January, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) revealed.

Four Palestinian civilians, including three children, were killed by Israeli forces in four separate incidents across the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), OCHA’s weekly report said.

Three of the fatalities, including two children (15 and 17-years-old) and a 25-year-old man, occurred in three separate incidents on 3, 11 and 15 January, in Deir Nidham village (Ramallah), next to the perimeter fence east of Al Bureij refugee camp (Gaza) and in Jayyus village (Qalqiliya), in clashes during protests against the US administration’s declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Another 17-year-old boy was shot and killed on 11 January, during clashes involving stone throwing at Israeli forces in Iraq Burin (Nablus).

Overall, 269 Palestinians, including 83 children, were injured by Israeli forces during multiple clashes across the oPt.

Of the total injuries, 67 occurred during clashes in protests next to the perimeter fence in the Gaza Strip. The rest of the injuries (202) were recorded in the West Bank.

Across the West Bank, Israeli forces conducted 176 search and arrest operations and detained 261 Palestinians, including at least 22 children.

Five Palestinians were injured and 115 Palestinian-owned trees and seven vehicles were vandalized in 14 separate incidents involving Israeli settlers.

On at least thirteen occasions in Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at farmers and fishermen, while enforcing access restrictions on land along the perimeter fence and on fishing areas along the coast, injuring five fishermen and arresting eight others, including two children, in addition to confiscating three boats.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

French municipality recognizes Palestinian state

Recognize Palestinian State

Patrice Leclerc, mayor of Gennevilliers, a northern suburb of Paris, on Friday announced his decision to recognize the state of Palestine saying that the decision will be officially signed next Monday.

Leclerc said in a statement that the French parliament in December 2014 passed a draft resolution urging the government to recognize the independent state of Palestine.

He explained that the French foreign minister at the time, Laurent Fabius, said that in case no agreement is reached in the Palestinian-Israeli talks, France will recognize Palestine, but nothing has been done.

The Palestinian-Israeli negotiations have been suspended since April 2014 due to Israel’s refusal to halt its settlement construction and accept the 1967 borders as a basis for the two-state solution.

Leclerc pointed out that the French president, Emmanuel Macron, refuses to recognize the Palestinian state, calling on other French municipalities to follow Gennevilliers’ steps to push the government to recognize Palestine.

The Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to meet with European Union foreign ministers in Brussels next Monday.

The Palestinian foreign minister to the European Union, Abdulrahim al-Farra, on Friday said that Abbas will ask the European ministers to recognize the state of Palestine on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Over the past two years, more than 10 European parliaments have called on their governments to recognize the state of Palestine but governments said they will make this step in an appropriate time.

The Gennevilliers municipality move came in response to the US recognition of Jerusalem, with its eastern and western parts, as the capital of Israel.

(Source / 20.01.2018)

Impediments reflect the intention to make violations permanent

Ramona Wadi

By Ramona Wadi

Last year, Israel and the US invested unprecedented efforts in discrediting the legitimate rights of Palestinians and seeking to limit, to the point of dysfunction, the role of institutions working directly with Palestinian refugees, notably the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA).

During a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in June 2017, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley accused the UN of bullying tactics against Israel, prompting Netanyahu to state mere days later that UNRWA should be dismantled.

Since the early days of Donald Trump’s presidency, Israel is no longer choosing who to discredit. Supported in international institutions by the US in an overt manner, Netanyahu has adopted a different strategy – that of leveraging similar attacks on the UN and Palestinians (despite the body’s support for Israel’s colonial project).

However, both the UN and Palestinians are subjugated to the point of dependence, albeit under different circumstances. The UN’s dependence is directly linked to maintaining the cycle of human rights violations. Palestinians, on the other hand, have been forced into dependence for survival because the international community, in accordance with Israel’s demand, eliminated the possibilities for anti-colonial struggle and framed the political cycle of displacement as a humanitarian concern.

The recent news that Trump is withholding more than half of its financial annual contribution to UNRWA makes this dynamic even clearer. Commissioner General Pierre Krähenbühl’s statement reflects both the necessity of the organisation’s work, as well as the importance of assuring the permanence of services offered to Palestinian refugees.

It is no secret that the US has always guaranteed billions for Israeli violence and millions as hypocritical compensation for the perpetual violations inflicted upon Palestinians. Identical tactics have been implemented in the context of UNRWA. The needs of Palestinian refugees are not being met in a way which befits autonomy and independence, despite the US being the largest single donor until 2017. The deficit created through US collaboration with Israel ensures that UNRWA will be restricted in its accomplishments, with the result that Palestinians will remain tethered to priorities related to basic needs in order to survive.

Thus, it is contradictory to call for the dismantling of UNRWA while reducing its budget. The needs of Palestinians perpetuated by Israel, the US and the international community, have to be met in a specific manner that is stronger than the current measure. If the organisation’s budget is severely crippled, it stands to reason that necessities will have to remain a priority. Since Palestinians are not fictitious, despite what Netanyahu and the Zionist narrative proclaim, neither the refugees nor their needs will disappear.

UNRWA’s existence is a consequence of the Israeli colonial project. In a world not morally warped, the focus of accountability would be shifted upon the aggressor, rather than a dependent organisation that cannot completely guarantee the well-being of Palestinian refugees, let alone autonomy. Perhaps Netanyahu can consider the obvious solution which would see the end of the humanitarian approach towards Palestinians: decolonise the land, let the refugees return to historic Palestine, and the UNRWA saga will come to a dignified end.

(Source / 20.01.2018)