Partial Dutch Burqa Ban Goes Into Effect

Protestors demonstrate against the ban on Muslim women wearing the burqa in public in The Hague, November 30, 2006

The Netherlands banned the wearing of face-covering veils, such as burqas or niqabs, in public buildings and on transport from Thursday as the law on the garment came into force.

According to the Dutch government’s main advising body, only 200 to 400 women are estimated to wear a burqa or niqab in the country of 17 million people.

The legislation was passed by the Dutch Upper House of parliament in June 2018 after more than a decade of political debate on the subject. The far-right politician Geert Wilders had proposed the face-covering veil ban back in 2005.

“From now on the wearing of clothing which covers the face is banned in educational facilities, public institutions and buildings, as well as hospitals and public transport,” the Dutch interior ministry said in a statement. 

It added that it was important in such public places to be recognized and seen, which besides the burqa, also bans a face-covering motor helmet, ski-mask or hood. A person could be fined 150 euros ($165).

However, the public transport sector said it would not stop to make a woman in a burqa get off as it would cause delays. And hospitals also said they would still treat people regardless of what they are wearing.

The Dutch law does not ban the wearing of a burqa on the street, unlike France’s ban which took effect in 2010. Belgium, Denmark and Austria have similar laws.

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

7 Palestinians arrested in Israel raids in West Bank

An Israeli soldier intervenes Palestinians during a protest against the construction of Jewish settlements and the separation wall in Qaddum village in Nablus, West Bank on 26 July 2019 

At least seven Palestinians were arrested in overnight raids carried out by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, according to the military on Thursday, Anadolu reports.

A military statement said the individuals had been arrested for suspected involvement in “violent popular activities”, without elaborating about the nature of these alleged activities.

The Israeli army carries out frequent arrest campaigns across the West Bank — including occupied East Jerusalem — on the pretext of searching for “wanted” Palestinians.

According to Palestinian figures, roughly 5,500 Palestinians — including numerous women and children — are currently languishing in Israeli detention facilities.

READ: Israel threatening two-state solution: Palestine PM 

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

1,370 operations at Gaza’s eye hospital since start of 2019

Hospitals and patients are effected by the electricity crisis in Gaza [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

A Palestinian child receives medical care in Gaza 

Gaza’s only public eye hospital carried out 1,370 surgical operations, including 75 emergencies, in the first six months of this year, it’s biannual report revealed.

The report stated that 145 operations needed highly skilled experts. Meanwhile, the hospital carried out 6,364 minor operations, with Local anaesthesia.

According to the report, more than 27,000 patients visited the hospital, which is the only government-run eye hospital in Gaza.

Dr Abdul-Salam Sabbah, general director of hospitals in Gaza, hailed the efforts of the medical, nursing and administrative staff at the hospital, stating they have been striving to improve medical services in light of the severe shortages of medical equipment and medicines as a result of the Israeli siege and the Palestinian Authority’s sanctions.

READ: Some 1,250 patients in Gaza hospitals at risk of blindness

Gaza hospital suspends services due to fuel shortages - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

Israel summons 8-year-old Palestinian girl for interrogation

Israeli forces summoned an eight-year-old Palestinian girl, Malak Sadr for interrogation in the West Bank city of Hebron

Israeli forces summoned an eight-year-old Palestinian girl, Malak Sadr, for interrogation in the West Bank city of Hebron

Israeli authorities yesterday summoned an eight-year-old Palestinian girl from the occupied West Bank city of Hebron for interrogation, making her the third minor to be called in for questioning this week.

According to sources who informed the Palestinian news agency Wafa, Israeli soldiers raided the home of Hebron resident Shadi Sadr last night and gave him a summons for his eight-year-old daughter Malak to appear at an interrogation centre. Her crime, the father was told, was allegedly harassing the military-backed Israeli settlers.

The incident comes amid a recent spate of summons and interrogations of extremely young Palestinian children this past week for a number of alleged crimes including throwing cartons at occupation forces and “harassing” settlers and settlement projects. The first arrest was that of four-year-old Muhammad Rabi’ Elayyan on Tuesday and the second was issued to the father of six-year-old Qais Firas Obaid yesterday, both of whom were residents of the same east Jerusalem neighbourhood of Issawiya.

According to the Palestine branch of the rights group Defence for Children International, at least 8,000 Palestinian children have been arrested and prosecuted in the Israeli military detention system since 2000.

READ: Muhammad Elayyan is a small child, but was still taken for an Israeli interrogation

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

Israel approves 6,000 new settlement units in West Bank

The illegal Jewish settlement of Neve Yaakov (foreground) in the northern area of east Jerusalem and Israel's controversial barrier separating the Palestinian neighbourhood of al-Ram (background) in the West Bank, on April 1, 2019. [AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP / Getty]

The illegal Jewish settlement of Neve Yaakov in the West Bank, on 1 April 2019

Israel’s Security Cabinet yesterday approved a new plan to build 6,000 housing units in illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

The decision comes a day after the country’s Security Cabinet issued permits for 715 Palestinian housing units in “Area C” of the occupied West Bank, which is under Israel’s military and administrative control.

Israeli media sources said that the decision came a few days before US presidential adviser Jared Kushner tours the Middle East, when he is expected to come to Israel for talks.

In response to Israel’s approval of the construction of Palestinian homes, the Palestinian Authority said there is no need for Palestinians to obtain permission from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to build homes in “Area C” of the occupied Palestinian territories.

In its statement the PA’s Foreign Ministry said that Netanyahu’s policies prove that he deals with the occupied Palestinian Area C as a “strategic reserve” for Jewish settlements and “is turning the fragmented settlements to one contiguous geographical settlement block.”

Last week Israel razed 100 Palestinian homes in occupied East Jerusalem in what rights groups said was the “worst case of ethnic cleansing since 1967”.

Netanyahu: Settlements to stay forever

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

Water Series: Israeli Forces Destroy Farmland East of Hebron – ISM Speaks to Owner Ghassan Jaber

01 AUG2:07 AM

07/30/19 | International Solidarity Movement | Bit Arawa

This is the first of a series of reports documenting the control and devastation of water sources by Israel as a tool of oppression.

On Thursday 18th July Israeli occupation forces came to the Al Baqa’a area, east of Hebron, and destroyed an irrigation system that carried water to two agricultural fields, growing around 10,000 tomato plants each.

Ghassan Jaber, 40, is the son of the owner of one of the fields. His family have been farming this land for generations. He told ISM that about thirty soldiers arrived in five military jeeps at 7am. Jaber asked the soldiers to show him a military order or permission form from Israeli authorities but they would not speak to him, instead forcefully evacuating him and his family away from the tomato fields. The soldiers cut the majority of the pipes that make up the irrigation system, crushing tomato plants in the process. They confiscated three of Jaber’s pesticide machines, each costing around 4000 NIS (1,100 USD). The family are currently watering the plants and administering pesticide by hand, which has greatly increased their workload. Since the incident, many of the tomato plants have died. This week, Jaber and his family are replacing the cut pipes. He estimates that this will cost about 40,000 NIS (11,000 USD), not including the additional labour costs. Jaber and his sons told ISM that they would be working for the next 24 hours to replace the pipes in time to save the crops.

The military claims that Jaber’s farm is diverting water from the nearby illegal Israeli settlement Kiryat Arba. The farm has traditionally taken its water from a well owned by the Jaber family, situated on their land. In 2009, Israeli forces blocked the well with rubble rendering it unusable. It cost Jaber about 30,000 NIS (8,500 USD) to replace this well, and last winter the soldiers blocked it again. Jaber decided to build a hidden groundwater well so that the militarywould not be able to find and destroy it. This cost Jaber about 150,000 NIS (42,500 USD). It is this groundwater well that now supplies the irrigation system. On Thursday, Jaber told the soldiers that he is using his own groundwater but they went ahead with the destruction regardless.

Jaber told ISM he is concerned that once he replaces the irrigation system, the soldiers will return and destroy it again. The extended Jaber family own and farm a lot of the land around Al Baqa’a, which is the most fertile land in Hebron. It falls in area C, under Israeli control. Kiryat Arba is very close by, making this highly contested land. The Palestinian population in this area is small, but they own most of the land. Israeli authorities have banned the construction of new homes on this land and have previously demolished houses here, most recently in 2010. A month ago, the military confiscated 24 dunams of Palestinian owned land in this area.

Jaber says that this incident is not just about his family, farming and water but is linked to bigger political tensions. The military, he says, are targeting the Palestinian people’s sources of income and self-sustainability. They are damaging the local food supply: he predicts that as a result of the incident the price of tomatoes in Hebron will rise. This systematic assault on the everyday lives of Palestinian people is part of the Israeli government’s comprehensive warfare against Palestine.

(Source / 01.08.2019) 

Palestinian Child Injured In Israeli Police Chase

A 10-year-old Palestinian child was injured on Wednesday evening while being chased by the Israeli police forces in Jerusalem.

Local sources said that Mohammed Tarwa suffered some wounds while being chased by the Israeli police who attempted to arrest him.

Tarwa was transferred to a local medical center for treatment, they added.

Meanwhile, the Israeli police arrested Yousef Obeid, 21, at the western entrance to al-Isawiya town in Jerusalem, according to Wadi Hilweh Information Center.

Al-Isawiya has been subjected to a military siege and almost daily home raids and arrest campaigns for over two months as part of a collective punishment policy pursued against the residents.

(Source / 01.08.2019) 


Nablus (QNN) – The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) set up roadblocks this afternoon in the north of the West Bank mainly on the road between Nablus and Jenin following an alleged shooting incident.

The IOF claimed that shots were fired by a man on a motorcycle at an army patrol near the village of Beit Sharaf, north of Nablus, and that he was able to get away. No one was injured in the alleged attack, said the army.

Immediately after, soldiers began a manhunt for the alleged attacker and set up roadblocks from Beit Sharaf further north to the village of Burqa.

(Source / 01.08.2019) 


Ramallah (QNN) – Sada Social Center condemned in a statement on Thursday the policies of the social media websites, saying they do not take into account the particular situation in Palestine and that they continue to restrict the Palestinian content in an egregious and escalating manner.

In its ongoing efforts to protect Palestinian content on the social networking sites, the center documented a number of violations, most of them on Facebook. It said in July alone, Facebook committed 23 violations of the Palestinian content, ranging from the removal of pages and personal accounts, temporary bans and deletion of posts under false pretexts.

For instance, the center said, Facebook removed the following pages: Camps of the Pioneers of Liberation, Palestine 48 News, Palestine Post, Kullna Wladak (We are all your sons), Deffa Press, Marah Rabah al-Hadath. Facebook also blocked other posts by Al-Raie Agency and removed the personal account of journalist Abdul-Raouf Khader.

In the meantime, Facebook temporarily banned or removed the accounts of other journalists, including: Bushra Tawil, Sami Saee, Mohammad Dayeh, Hasan Esleih, Sameh Manasrah, Mahmoud Bassam, and Ali Qaraqie.

During the same period, said Sada Social Center, WhatsApp Messenger blocked phone numbers belonging to Quds News Network 22 times.

Inaugurated in September 2017, Sada Social Center is a volunteer center which advocates for the protection of the Palestinian digital content and monitor anti-Palestinian violations on the social media.

(Source / 01.08.2019) 


Israel’s occupation forces have killed a young man on the border with the besieged Gaza Strip who apparently was on a personal revenge mission to avenge a disabled brother killed by Israel.

20-year-old Hani Hassan Abu Salah was shot dead early on Thursday August 1st after he had crossed the border with ethnically cleansed Palestine 1948 and engaged Israel’s occupation forces’ patrol in a firefight, moderately wounding one occupation forces’ officer and wounding lightly two other occupation soldiers.

Israeli occupation claims that Abu Salah, dressed in a uniform of Hamas’ armed wing the al-Qassam Brigades, would have thrown a hand grenade towards the occupation soldiers and one of them would have had a bullet stopped by his helmet. After the patrol from the elite Golani Brigades would not have been able to deal with his attack on its own, further occupation forces would have been called on the site before he was killed.

The incident took place near Khan Younis and afterwards Israel’s occupation forces attacked a resistance site nearby with shells fired from a tank although Israeli occupation admitted that it believes that Abu Salah acted on his own. No further casualties ensued from the Israeli occupation shelling.

Hani Abu Salah’s older brother Fadi(30) was shot in chest and killed by Israel’s occupation forces in the massacre on May 14th 2018 along with over 60 other people while protesting against the move of United States’ embassy in Israel to divided Jerusalem. He had lost both of his legs in Israeli attack in 2008 and was bound to a wheelchair.

(Source / 01.08.2019)