Reaching Political Solution is not Decided by Percentage of Military Control But by Genuine Political Transition

President of the Syrian Coalition Abdurrahman Mustafa said that reaching a political solution in Syria cannot be decided by the percentage of military control on the ground, stressing that achieving a genuine political transition in line with the Geneva Communique of 2012 and UN Security Council resolution 2254 must remain the basis for such solution.

President Mustafa downplayed the importance of losses that rebel forces suffered in some areas across Syria. He said that there is international consensus that a political solution must be reached in accordance with international resolutions on Syria as he underscored the need to hold war criminals accountable.

In an interview with Anadolu news agency, Mustafa stressed that the Syrian people will continue to demand freedom, dignity and democracy regardless of the increase or decrease in the percentage of military control on the ground.

“When the Syrian people revolted against tyranny, repression, and dictatorship back in March 2011, the Assad regime was in control of every inch of Syria,” Mustafa said.

President Mustafa pointed out that the Assad regime and its allies know only the language of killings, shelling, siege and mass forced displacement, arbitrary detention and systematic torture to discourage the Syrian people from achieving its demands.

Moreover, President Mustafa stressed that the Syrian Coalition will continue to work to serve civilians in the liberated areas through securing support for the Syrian Interim Government, local councils, and the Assistance Coordination Unit.

(Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department / 15.05.2018)

Justifying Gaza massacre, Israel minister calls Palestinians ‘Nazis’

Israeli Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan

An Israeli government minister has justified the killings in Gaza by Israeli occupation forces by calling Palestinians “Nazis”.

Israel’s Minister of Strategic Affairs,  Gilad Erdan, reacted to the rising death toll in Gaza by saying that the number of deaths “did not indicate anything” because Palestinian protestors were “terrorists” following the orders of a “Nazi” like organisation.


Erdan referred to Palestinians as “Nazis” during his Twitter outburst defending Israel’s brutal killing of Palestinians. At the time of writing, 61 Palestinians have been killed and nearly 3,000 have been injured. Erdan, however, was unmoved. Defending the Israeli massacre, the Likud minister said:

“Despite the number of dead, we need to remember and remind: We’re not speaking about demonstrations. We’re talking about terrorists of a terrorist organisation who endanger Israeli residents. All responsibility for the bloodshed lies with the leaders of Hamas, who, with Nazi anger, endlessly shed blood to erase from people’s memories their own failures in the management of the Gaza Strip. Here it is, the truth”

“Israel does not wish to escalate and doesn’t want the death of residents of the Gaza Strip,” Erdan continued. “Those who want this are solely the leadership of the Hamas terrorist organisation, which uses a cynical and malicious use of bloodshed. The number of killed doesn’t indicate anything – just as the number of Nazis who died in the world war doesn’t make Nazism something you can explain or understand.”

Erdan’s comments appear to echo remarks made yesterday by the Labour Friends of Israel. The pro-Israel lobby group came under sharp criticism for blaming Palestinians for their own death.

READ: Labour Friends of Israel blames Palestinians for their own deaths

(Source / 15.05.2018)

Israel denies West Bank medical team entry to Gaza

Palestinian security forces check vehicles at a checkpoint to investigate the assassination of an official of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the armed branch of Hamas, Mazen Fuqaha, who was killed in Gaza City, Gaza on March 26, 2017. ( Ali Jadallah - Anadolu Agency )

Palestinian security forces check vehicles at a checkpoint in Gaza City, Gaza on 26 March, 2017

The Al-Mezan Centre for Human Rights has condemned the Israeli authorities for preventing a medical delegation from the Palestinian Ministry of Health in the West Bank from entering the Gaza Strip on Sunday to provide medical care for the wounded protesters.

In a statement issued yesterday, the centre condemned the Israeli restrictions imposed on the freedom of movement for medical missions and called on the international community to intervene to ensure the free passage of all medical staff and supplies and to lift the siege on the Gaza Strip.

Israel’s policies, especially the continuation of the 11-year siege, have contributed to the decline in the capacity of health services in the besieged enclave.

READ: Israel army attacking and impeding Palestinian medics, says British charity

The statement cited a report by the Palestinian Ministry of Health’s General Directorate of Pharmacy which stated that as a result of the Israeli restrictions 50 per cent of vital medicines are not available in the Gaza Strip.

The center called on the international community to take concrete and urgent steps to stop the Israeli targeting of civilians, to facilitate the passage of medical delegations and to ensure that the wounded and sick have access to hospitals by pressing the Israeli authorities to respect international humanitarian law provisions and to end the siege on Gaza.

(Source / 15.05.2018)

8-month-old Palestinian killed after inhaling Israeli tear gas – health ministry

8-month-old Palestinian killed after inhaling Israeli tear gas – health ministry

An eight-month-old baby was killed after Israel fired tear gas at protesters in Gaza, the Palestinian Health Ministry said. Her death is one of dozens that occurred during demonstrations against the US Embassy’s move to Jerusalem.

Read more

The Israel-Gaza border, May 14, 2018 © Ibraheem Abu Mustafa


Leila al-Ghandour was killed after inhaling tear gas on Monday, according to the ministry. It was not immediately clear how close the infant and her family were to the border fence.

She was killed along with dozens of other Palestinians on Monday, according to the ministry. Most of them were reportedly shot dead by Israeli sniper fire.

The Monday protests coincided with the opening of the US Embassy in Jerusalem, a move which has been condemned throughout the Arab world and beyond. It also came amid the Great Return March, which is scheduled to culminate on Nakba on Tuesday, a date marked by Palestinians as a day of mass exodus from their land as a result of Israel’s establishment.

Although the protests were originally slated to end on Tuesday, such a cessation seems unlikely, Professor James Petras told RT on Monday. “I think the massacres by Israel will continue, the peaceful protests from Palestinians will continue. I don’t see any resolution, unfortunately,” he said.

(Source / 15.05.2018)

Protests, clashes renewed on Nakba day

afbeelding niet weergegeven

Palestinians renewed marches and protests on the 70th Nakba day, one day after Israel has killed 61 peaceful protesters on the Gaza border while the US was opening its embassy in Jerusalem.

The day was announced as a general strike in all institutions.

Clashes broke out Tuesday morning between the citizens and the occupation forces in the areas of ​central Hebron and the northern entrance of the city of Qalqilya, Bethlehem and Ramallah.

In Hebron, youths blocked the roads leading to Bab al-Zawia area with stones and containers. Soldiers surrounded dozens of houses and buildings in the area and fired sound bombs in the area.

In the north of Bethlehem, local sources reported that a military force arrested the Palestinian policeman Munir Atallah al-Titi from Fawwar camp at the Container checkpoint north of Bethlehem.

In addition, a protest headed towards 300 checkpoint, where IOF immediately fired teargas and rubber bullets towards protesters.

PNN reporter said that photojournalist Musa Al-Shaer was wounded by a rubber bullet in the back.

In Al-Bireh, confrontations erupted after the start of the march of return and the occupation forces suppressed the demonstrators at the northern entrance of the city.
Clashes also broke out on the northern entrance of Qalqiliya in more than one point of contact in Qalqiliya.

(Source / 15.05.2018)

Turkey tells Israeli ambassador to leave country over Palestinian protest deaths

Turkey tells Israeli ambassador to leave country over Palestinian protest deaths

Turkey has told Israel’s ambassador to Ankara to leave the country over the killing of dozens of Palestinian protesters by Israeli forces.

“The Israeli ambassador was told that our envoy to Israel was called back for consultations, and was informed that it would be appropriate for him to go back to his country for some time,” a Turkish Foreign Ministry source told Reuters.

Read more

© Mahmud Hams / AFP

The ambassador, Eitan Naeh, was summoned to the Foreign Ministry in Ankara on Tuesday, according to Haaretz. He has served in the position since October 2015.

It comes after Turkey recalled its own ambassadors in Israel and the United States “for consultations” over the violence on Monday. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan referred to the crackdown by Israeli forces as “genocide” and called Israel a “terrorist state,” while reaffirming his country’s commitment to standing in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

His statements prompted a response from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who accused the Turkish president of being “among Hamas’ biggest supporters…there is no doubt that he well understands terrorism and slaughter…I suggest that he not preach morality to us.”

Erdogan then tweeted that Netanyahu is the leader of an “apartheid state that has occupied a defenseless people’s lands for 60+ years in violation of UN resolutions.” 

Ankara has been a vocal critic of the violence in Gaza and the Monday opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem. It has called for a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation to discuss the situation.

On Tuesday, Turkish government spokesman Bekir Bozdag told parliament that Turkey held the US just as accountable as Israel for the Monday violence at the Gaza border.

“The blood of innocent Palestinians is on the hands of the United States,” he said. “The United States is part of the problem, not the solution.”

A total of 60 people were killed in the Monday demonstrations at the Gaza border, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. Most of the deaths were a result of Israeli sniper fire. Children were among the fatalities, including an eight-month-old baby who inhaled tear gas fired by Israeli forces.

(Source / 15.05.2018)

Gaza killings: Names and faces of those killed by Israeli forces this week

Eight-month-old Laila is youngest Palestinian killed in Gaza on Monday, the deadliest day since 2014 war

From left: Ahmed Alrantisi, Laila Anwar Al-Ghandoor, Ahmed Altetr, Alaa Alkhatib Ezz el-din Alsamaak, Motassem Abu Louley

Editor’s note: Middle East Eye has live coverage of protests in Palestine and Israel here.

Sixty-one people were either killed or died of wounds inflicted by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip on Monday and Tuesday as thousands of Palestinians demonstrated across the occupied territory to mark the 70th anniversary of the Nakba.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the Gaza Ministry of Health released the names of 58 Palestinians killed:

1. Laila Anwar Al-Ghandoor, 8 months old

2. Ezz el-din Musa Mohamed Alsamaak, 14 years old

3. Wisaal Fadl Ezzat Alsheikh Khalil, 15 years old

4. Ahmed Adel Musa Alshaer, 16 years old

5. Saeed Mohamed Abu Alkheir, 16 years old

6. Ibrahim Ahmed Alzarqa, 18 years old

7. Eman Ali Sadiq Alsheikh, 19 years old

8. Zayid Mohamed Hasan Omar, 19 years old

9. Motassem Fawzy Abu Louley, 20 years old

10. Anas Hamdan Salim Qadeeh, 21 years old

11. Mohamed Abd Alsalam Harz, 21 years old

From left: Fadi Abu Salah, Motaz Al-Nunu, Jihad Mohammed Othman Mousa, Mousa Jabr Abdulsalam Abu Hasnayn, Ezz Eldeen Nahid Aloyutey, Anas Hamdan Salim Qadeeh

12. Yehia Ismail Rajab Aldaqoor, 22 years old

13. Mustafa Mohamed Samir Mahmoud Almasry, 22 years old

14. Ezz Eldeen Nahid Aloyutey, 23 years old

15. Mahmoud Mustafa Ahmed Assaf, 23 years old

16. Ahmed Fayez Harb Shahadah, 23 years old

17. Ahmed Awad Allah, 24 years old

18. Khalil Ismail Khalil Mansor, 25 years old

19. Mohamed Ashraf Abu Sitta, 26 years old

20. Bilal Ahmed Abu Diqah, 26 years old

21. Ahmed Majed Qaasim Ata Allah, 27 years old

From left: Mahmoud Wael Mahmoud Jundeyah, Ibrahim Ahmed Alzarqa, Musab Yousef Abu Leilah, Jihad Mufid Al-Farra, Saeed Mohamed Abu Alkheir, Mohamed Hasan Mustafa Alabadilah

22. Mahmoud Rabah Abu Maamar, 28 years old

23.Musab Yousef Abu Leilah, 28 years old

24. Ahmed Fawzy Altetr, 28 years old

25. Mohamed Abdelrahman Meqdad, 28 years old

26. Obaidah Salim Farhan, 30 years old

27. Jihad Mufid Al-Farra, 30 years old

28. Fadi Hassan Abu Salah, 30 years old

29. Motaz Bassam Kamil Al-Nunu, 31 years old

30. Mohammed Riyad Abdulrahman Alamudi, 31 years old

31. Jihad Mohammed Othman Mousa, 31 years old

32. Shahir Mahmoud Mohammed Almadhoon, 32 years old

33. Mousa Jabr Abdulsalam Abu Hasnayn, 35 years old

From left: Shahir Mahmoud Mohammed Almadhoon, Khalil Ismail Khalil Mansor, Mahmoud Saber Hamad Abu Taeemah, Mohamed Ashraf Abu Sitta, Mustafa Mohamed Samir Mahmoud Almasry, Obaidah Salim Farhan

34. Mohammed Mahmoud Abdulmoti Abdal’al, 39 years old

35. Ahmed Mohammed Ibrahim Hamdan, 27 years old

36. Ismail Khalil Ramadhan Aldaahuk, 30 years old

37. Ahmed Mahmoud Mohammed Alrantisi, 27 years old

38. Alaa Alnoor Ahmed Alkhatib, 28 years old

39. Mahmoud Yahya Abdawahab Hussain, 24 years old

40. Ahmed Abdullah Aladini, 30 years old

41. Saadi Said Fahmi Abu Salah, 16 years old

42. Ahmed Zahir Hamid Alshawa, 24 years old

43. Mohammed Hani Hosni Alnajjar, 33 years old

44. Fadl Mohamed Ata Habshy, 34 years old

45. Mokhtar Kaamil Salim Abu Khamash, 23 years old

46. Mahmoud Wael Mahmoud Jundeyah, 21 years old

47. Abdulrahman Sami Abu Mattar, 18 years old

48. Ahmed Salim Alyaan Aljarf, 26 years old

From left: Mohammed Hani Hosni Alnajjar, Yehia Ismail Rajab Aldaqoor, Mohammed Riyad Abdulrahman Alamudi, Ahmed Adel Musa Alshaer, Fadl Mohamed Ata Habshy, Ismail Khalil Ramadhan Aldaahuk

49. Mahmoud Sulayman Ibrahim Aql, 32 years old

50. Mohamed Hasan Mustafa Alabadilah, 25 years old

51. Kamil Jihad Kamil Mihna, 19 years old

52. Mahmoud Saber Hamad Abu Taeemah, 23 years old

53. Ali Mohamed Ahmed Khafajah, 21 years old

54. Abdelsalam Yousef Abdelwahab, 39 years old

55. Mohamed Samir Duwedar, 27 years old

56. Talal Adel Ibrahim Mattar, 16 years old

57. Omar Jomaa Abu Ful, 30 years old

58. Nasser Ahmed Mahmoud Ghrab, 51 years old

59 – 61: Unidentified

(Source / 15.05.2018)