Hamas chief arrives in Turkey as part of foreign tour

Ismail Haniyeh press conference in Gaza, on 10 November 2019 [Mohammed Asad-Middle East Monitor]

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh press conference in Gaza, on 10 November 2019

Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh arrived in Turkey on Sunday, the Palestinian resistance group said.

The visit is the first leg in a foreign tour that will also take Haniyeh to Malaysia, Russia, Qatar, Lebanon, Mauritania, and Kuwait.

A Hamas source said Haniyeh and his accompanying delegation arrived in Istanbul at dawn.

READ: Hamas defends Turkey’s right to protect its borders, supports Syria territorial integrity

The foreign tour is the first by Haniyeh since he was elected leader of the Palestinian resistance group in 2017.

A Palestinian source told Anadolu Agency on Saturday that Haniyeh had obtained permission from Egyptian authorities to conduct the tour during his recent visit to Cairo.

Palestinians living in the blockaded Gaza Strip use the Cairo International Airport for overseas trips.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

Israeli airstrikes target Gaza Strip

Smoke is seen rising following an Israeli airstrike on a building in Gaza city on May 5, 2019 [Ibrahim Khalaf/ApaImages]

Smoke is seen rising following an Israeli air strike on a building in Gaza city

Israel carried out airstrikes early Sunday in the northern Gaza Strip in response to rocket fire, according to security sources, reports Anadolu Agency.

The Israeli military said in response to three rockets fired from Gaza into Israel, that jets and helicopters hit Hamas targets in Gaza.

READ: Israel launches fresh air strikes in Gaza

According to security sources in Gaza, seven positions in Jabalia, belonging to the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Palestinian resistance group, Hamas, was hit by Israel.

No casualties have yet been reported.

The Israeli army claimed three rockets were launched from Gaza and its iron dome defense system shot down two of the missiles.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

Soldiers Abduct A Palestinian In Jerusalem, Install Roadblock Near Jenin

Israeli soldiers abducted, Saturday, a young Palestinian man in occupied East Jerusalem, and installed a roadblock west of Jenin, in the occupied West Bank.

Media sources Jerusalem said the soldiers abducted Nidal Abboud, after stopping him in Bab al-Amoud area, in the Old City.

The soldiers took the abducted young man to a nearby detention center. The army also attacked several Palestinian journalists while trying to stop them from documenting the abduction.

The incidents took place during a nonviolent protest in Bab al-Amoud.

In addition, the army installed a military roadblock at the main entrance of Sielet al-Harithiya town, west of Jenin, in northern West Bank.

The soldiers stopped and searched many cars, and interrogated dozens of Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

PCHR: 83rd Great March of Return, 64 Palestinians Injured, Including 19 Children

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights in Gaza reported that 64 Palestinian civilians, including 19 children, a paramedic, and 4 women, were shot and injured by Israeli occupation forces’ (IOF) fire against peaceful protestors at the 83rd Great March of Return (GMR), on Friday, December 6, 2019.

Israeli forces preceded the protests by describing them as “chaotic and violent”, threatening to target the protesters. In a video, Colonel Iyad Sarhan, Head of the Coordination and Liaison Administration (CLA) for Gaza, called upon the Gaza civilian residents “not to go back to the violent way and not to take part again in the riot and protests along the border fence.”

He also attempted to intimidate demonstrators, “if any of you approach the fence, you will be targeted and pay a heavy price for your wrong choices,” adding that, “Being in the border area will endanger your lives.”

This week, Israeli forces resumed the use of excessive force against peaceful protestors, shooting 4 civilians with live bullets as well as rubber bullets, mainly in protesters’ upper bodies.

One injured Palestinian, in eastern Rafah, was deemed in serious condition after being shot with a rubber bullet in the head, suffering from a skull fracture.

At 14:00 Palestinian civilians began heading to the five GMR encampments in the eastern Gaza Strip to join protest titled: “GMR Will Continue” and lasted until 16:30.

Since the outbreak of GMR on 30 March 2018, PCHR documented 215 civilian killings by IOF, including 47 children, 2 women, 9 persons with disabilities, 4 paramedics and 2 journalists. Additionally, IOF shot and injured 14,759 civilians, including 3,715 children, 391 women, 255 paramedics and 218 journalists, noting that many sustained multiple injuries on separate occasions.

The following is a summary of today’s events along the Gaza Strip border:

Northern Gaza Strip: demonstrations took part in eastern Jabalia. Protesters threw stones at IOF stationed along the border fence. IOF shot and injured 14 civilians, including 5 children and 2 women: 2 with live bullets and shrapnel, 8 with rubber bullets and 4 were hit with tear gas canisters.

Gaza City: hundreds took part in Malaka area in eastern Gaza City. IOF targeted them with teargas canisters and live and rubber bullets. As a result, 5 civilians were injured; 4 of them were hit with tear gas canisters.

Central Gaza Strip: protests took part in eastern al-Buriej Camp. Hundreds gathered near the border fence and attempted to throw stones at IOF, who fired live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, 4 civilians, including a woman, were injured: 1 with a live bullet and the others with teargas canisters.

Khan Younis: Hundreds civilians joined today’s protests in Khuza’ah area in eastern Khan Yunis. Most of the protesters stayed in the encampment for the activities while dozens gathered near the border fence and attempted to throw stones and firecrackers. IOF fired live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at them in addition to firing waste water at them from water cannons. As a result, 6 civilians, including 3 children and 2 paramedics, were injured with rubber bullets and taken to hospitals.
Moreover, many civilians sustained superficial rubber bullets wounds and suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. They received treatment on the spot. The wounded paramedic, Dalia Bassam Ahmed Abu Reidah, 21, working within Watan Medical Team, was shot with a rubber bullet in her left hand. Paramedic Mohammed Ziyad Zoghbor, 35, a PRCS volunteer paramedic, was shot with a rubber bullet in the right shoulder. It should be noted that some Palestinian young men flocked to the protests at 13:00 and were shot with live bullets and hit with tear gas canisters before the crowds headed to the area. As a result, a child was wounded with a rubber bullet.

Rafah: hundreds of protestors gathered in eastern al-Shawka neighborhood while others remained at the protest encampment, where speeches and theatrical performances were performed. Dozens attempted to approach the fence and throw stones and burned tires. Israeli forces fired live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at protestors and pumped wastewater at them. As a result, 17 civilians, including 11 children, were injured: 2 shot with live bullets and shrapnel, 8 with rubber bullets and 7 with tear gas canisters.
Rajeh Mohammed al-Qadi, 24, who was shot with a rubber bullet in the head, causing a fractured skull, was admitted to the Gaza European Hospital in Khan Younis for his serious condition.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

Israeli Attacks Gaza After Alleged Rocket Fire

The Middle East Eye reported that Israeli aircraft carried out attacks on the besieged Gaza Strip, early Sunday, Palestinian security officials said, hours after three rockets were said to have been fired from the enclave.

Israel claims three rockets were launched from the besieged Gaza Strip towards southern Israel and intercepted by its Iron Dome defence system.

The strikes targeted two sites belonging to Al-Qassam Brigades, the Hamas military wing, in northern Gaza, with another series of attacks at a Qassam site west of Gaza City, there were no immediate reports of injuries.

All three projectiles were reportedly intercepted by the Iron Dome defence system, the Israeli army said, amending an earlier statement according to which two of the three rockets were shot down.

Medics had treated three people in the southern Israeli town of Sderot who suffered minor injuries while seeking shelter as air raid sirens went off, according to the Magen David Adom emergency medical service. Note the fact that it was not a ‘rocket’ that injured people in Israel, but the air raid siren.

A forum for the local councils of the Gaza border communities and the city of Sderot released a statement decrying “the substandard deterrence and failing policy of managing the security situation in the Gaza border communities”, Haaretz reported.

There were no immediate reports of material damage.

According to KAN Radio, Israeli aircraft were scrambled to the northern Strip three times on Saturday, following reports of suspicious activity near the border, but returned to base after checking that there had been no infiltration into Israel, the Jerusalem Post said.

Israel states that it holds the Hamas movement responsible for all rocket fire coming from the territory, although it has targeted other militant groups there.

Israel has imposed a land, air and sea blockade on the Gaza Strip since 2007,
and inflicted three military offensives against the besieged enclave; 2008 – Operation Cast Lead, 2012 – Returning Echo, and 2014 – Operation Protective Edge.

It is important to remember the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3246; the universal realization of the right of peoples to self-determination and of the speedy granting of independence to colonial countries and peoples for the effective guarantee and observance of human rights.

This resolution reaffirmed the legitimacy of the peoples’ struggle for liberation from colonial and foreign domination and alien subjugation by all available means, including armed struggle.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

Guardian investigation: Israeli group runs international hate speech on social media for profit

London (QNN)- A new investigation by the Guardian revealed that an Israeli group has been running a hate speech campaign against Muslims and the Left around the globe to gain profit.

The mysterious group has used some of Facebook’s largest far-right pages to create a commercial enterprise that harvests anti-Islamic hate for profit and influences politics across the globe, the investigation revealed.

The Israeli group has co-opted at least 21 organically grown far-right pages for the past two years, and used them to spread thousands of coordinated posts to more than 1 million followers across four continents and funnelling audiences to a cluster of 10 advertisement-heavy websites to milk the traffic for profit.

“The posts stoke deep hatred of Islam across the western world and influence politics in Australia, Canada, the UK and the US by amplifying far-right parties including Australia’s One Nation and vilifying Muslim politicians such as US Democratic congresswoman Ilhan Omar”, according to the Guardian.

It also targeted leftwing politicians during national election campaigns through spreading false stories about the UK Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau.

The network uncovered by the Guardian has operated with relative impunity even since Mark Zuckerberg offered his apology to the US Senate after the Cambridge Analytica and Russian interference scandals.

The investigation revealed that the Israeli network has gained access to existing rightwing and far-right Facebook pages by approaching local administrators and offering to act as editors who could bring new content and increase reach.

“Once they gain access, the Israeli administrators publish identical posts almost simultaneously to the network’s 21 Facebook pages, which have a combined 1 million followers around the globe”, according to the Guardian.

“Queensland University of Technology researchers worked with the Guardian to confirm that the Facebook posts are being distributed by a single source across the 21 pages, probably using auto-scheduling software.”

The network published 5,695 coordinated posts receiving 846,424 likes, shares or comments in October alone. The total number of the network’s posts has reached 165,000, which attracted 14.3m likes, shares or comments.

(Source/ 08.12.2019)

Palestinian right of return: The legal key to undoing the Zionist conquest

By Joseph Massad

One of the most ironic features of Zionism and the state of Israel is the central way in which the concept of “return” informs their ideology and policies.

Zionism’s colonial project hinged on the claim that contemporary European Jews were descendants of the ancient Hebrews of Palestine, and that their colonisation plan was nothing but a strategy to “return” Jews to the land of their alleged ancestors after an absence of two millennia. Thus, the concept of “return” was, and remains, the ideological cornerstone of Zionism and the state of Israel.

In the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel, issued in May 1948, the settler-colony’s founders asserted: “After being forcibly exiled from their land, the [Jewish] people kept faith with it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom … In recent decades they returned in their masses … The state of Israel will be open for Jewish immigration and for the Ingathering of the Exiles.”

UN Resolution 194
This commitment was guaranteed by Israel in issuing the 1950 Law of Return, which secured the right of every Jew worldwide “to come to this country as an oleh [immigrant]”. Meanwhile, Zionist militias expelled the Palestinian people from their homeland, starting in late 1947. By the end of 1948, the year that Israel was created, more than 750,000 Palestinians had been expelled.

This compelled the United Nations to issue Resolution 194 in December 1948, stipulating that “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible.”

The Israeli government has consistently rejected Resolution 194. In an attempt to challenge the Palestinian right of return, Israel issued its Law of Return for Jews a year and a half after the UN resolution.

The irony is not one that Israel does not recognise the right of refugees to return to their homeland; rather, Israel recognises only the right of Jews – whom it claims, based on its religious and colonial myths, were refugees from Palestine who had lived in exile for 2,000 years – to “return”, while it denies that right to Palestinians, whom it recognises as having been displaced from Palestine.

The basis of this discrepancy is not an Israeli affirmation that Jews were exiled, but that Palestinians were not, or that Palestinians did not originate in Palestine, just as it claims the Jews did.

Rather, the crux of the matter for Israel is its full understanding that international law and the UN guarantee of the right of return for expelled Palestinians negates the right of return that Israel grants to Jews worldwide, and therefore the Jewish right to colonise the homeland of the Palestinians.

Return as colonisation
While Theodor Herzl did not speak of a “return” of the Jews in his 1896 pamphlet The State of the Jews, in his 1902 novel Old-New Land, he emphasised the concept of “return”, which he explicitly coupled with colonisation. This understanding of return-as-colonisation-as-expulsion-of-the-natives was always explicit and never covered up by the early Zionists, who were, after all, writing during the heyday of European colonialism.

In Herzl’s novel, the idea is first articulated by a fictional Eastern European character: “Dr. Weiss, a simple rabbi from a provincial town in Moravia”. Weiss states: “A new movement has arisen within the last few years, which is called Zionism. Its aim is to solve the Jewish problem through colonization on a large scale. All who can no longer bear their present lot will return to our old home, to Palestine.”

By 1923, Vladimir Jabotinsky, the leader of Revisionist Zionism, had laid out the Zionist coupling in his manifesto, The Iron Wall, writing that “when the whole of the civilised world has recognised that Jews have a right to return to Palestine, which means that the Jews are, in principle, also ‘citizens’ and ‘inhabitants’ of Palestine, only they were driven out, and their return must be a lengthy process, it is wrong to contend that meanwhile the local population has the right to refuse to allow them to come back … Palestine consists of two national groups, the local group and these who were driven out, and the second group is the larger.”

Jabotinsky, like Herzl, understood that the so-called “return” of the Jews to Palestine was nothing but colonisation: “There can be no voluntary agreement between ourselves and the Palestine Arabs … it is utterly impossible to obtain the voluntary consent of the Palestine Arabs for converting ‘Palestine’ from an Arab country into a country with a Jewish majority … I suggest that [my readers] consider all the precedents with which they are acquainted, and see whether there is one solitary instance of any colonisation being carried on with the consent of the native population. There is no such precedent.

“The native populations, civilised or uncivilised, have always stubbornly resisted the colonists, irrespective of whether they were civilised or savage.”

Undoing Israel’s racist system
In contrast with Palestinians, whose right of return is affirmed in international law and UN resolutions, there are no international documents or laws that guarantee a Jewish “right of return” to Palestine or Israel. Neither the Balfour Declaration of 1917 nor the UN Partition Plan of 1947 spoke of any rights for Jews to “return” to Palestine. Only Israeli ideological claims and Israeli law grants them such a right.

Herein lies the reason why the two rights of return are not symmetrical in Israeli argumentation, any more than they are in international law. It is precisely because the European Jews’ “right” to return to their alleged “homeland” could only be realised through colonisation of the homeland of Palestinians, and Jewish colonisation of Palestinian land could only be realised through the expulsion of indigenous Palestinians and ensuring their inability to ever return home, that a Palestinian right of return would undo the entire Zionist project, which is premised on their expulsion.

Exercising the internationally recognised Palestinian right of return negates the Israeli Jewish “right” to colonise Palestine and annuls the Israeli Law of Return. Israel understands very well that the return of Palestinian refugees and their descendants means nothing short of decolonisation, and the undoing of the racist special status that Israel exclusively grants to Jews.

International law’s understanding of the rights of refugees includes the rights of their descendants to return, something that Israel and pro-Israel forces question as illegitimate. Yet, Israel’s concept of the return of Jews, as later amended in its law of return, allows not only those recognised as Jews to “return” to Israel, but also a non-Jewish “child and a grandchild of a Jew, the spouse of a Jew, the spouse of a child of a Jew and the spouse of a grandchild of a Jew, except for a person who has been a Jew and has voluntarily changed his religion.”

This amendment is in line with Zionism’s initial and permanent conception that the exclusive Jewish “right of return” means the Jewish right to colonise Palestine.

The Bosnian case
Israeli assertions, however, are not shared by the UN or international law.

In addition to the UN’s repeated reassertions of Palestinian refugees’ right of return, the right of return of displaced people was upheld in principle and practice after the Bosnian War. Around half a million refugees and internally displaced persons returned, with international assistance, after the 1995 Dayton Agreement, to their homes in Bosnia, a country of 3.5 million people dominated demographically and politically by members of another ethnic community.

As the Bosnian case clearly demonstrates, the right of return of the refugees trumped the racially separatist policies of local authorities, who sought to continue to control the land of the displaced refugees and to populate it demographically with their own ethnic group, at the expense of the refugees.

International enforcement of the Bosnian refugees’ right of return was based on the well-established right of return of refugees in international law and UN resolutions. Demographic racial separatism had no moral or legal standing whatsoever in enforcing the refugees’ right of return. This remains the case today, with the right of Somali refugees and their descendants to return to their country.

It is this established right that the Trump administration is seeking to undo through its ongoing attempts to destroy UNRWA, the UN agency that aids Palestinian refugees, and to redefine who is or is not a refugee.

With Palestinians outnumbering Jews today across Israeli-occupied Palestine, Israel’s enactment of the nation-state law in July 2018 was engineered to secure racial Jewish supremacy in the country, after Israel’s failure to secure Jewish demographic supremacy.

Colonial settlements
The Israeli conception of rights is not universal, but always particular – indeed, always specific to Jews. It is this particularism that Israel seeks to render compatible with international law’s universalism.

If the universalism of the Palestinian right of return, based on international law and UN resolutions, is undone in favour of the Israeli particularism of a Jewish “right of return” imposed by US and Israeli diktat as the new basis of international law, then the threat of a Palestinian return would be neutralised, and the right to continued Jewish colonisation of Palestine would be guaranteed.

The Trump administration’s recent decision affirming that Jewish colonial settlements in Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Golan Heights are not in contravention of international law, is the logical outcome of earlier Israeli and US efforts to deny Palestinians the right of return by redefining who is or is not a refugee.

The Zionist colonisation of Palestine was based on a particularist Jewish right of return-as-colonisation-as-expulsion of Palestinians; in short, it was based on racial supremacy, which justified this alleged right.

The Palestinian struggle today, therefore, must not waver on the implementation of the Palestinian right of return, as this right is the legal key to undoing the Zionist conquest of Palestine in its entirety.

Israel and its US ally understand this very well, which is why they are fighting with all their might to undo it.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

‘Israel’ arrests girl on her way to school in Hebron over alleged “knife possession”

Hebron (QNN)- Israeli soldiers arrested this morning a 14-year-old girl, who was on the way to school, claiming that she was carrying a knife and that she tried to stab armed Israeli soldiers near the Ibrahimi mosque.

Israeli media claimed that Afnan Abu Sneineh attacked Israeli soldiers near the Ibrahimi mosque.

The child was arrested at the Abu Irrish military checkpoint near the Ibrahimi mosque in the city.

Israeli soldiers carry out daily campaigns against school children throughout occupied Palestine, arresting and assaulting several of them.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

Al-Quds International urges Jordan to lead pro-Aqsa efforts at UN level

Photos File

Director of al-Quds International Institution Yassin Hamoud has urged Jordan to work with other Arab parties at the UN Security Council and the General Assembly to curb Israel’s racist measures against the Jerusalemite people and their holy sites.

This came during a telephone conversation with new Jordanian Minister of Awqaf Mohamed al-Khalaylah to applaud his recent remarks about the Aqsa Mosque’s Bab al-Rahma prayer building and Jordan’s support for the Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem.

Hamoud expressed his thanks to the Jordanian Awqaf Ministry for its efforts to defend the Arab and Islamic right to the Aqsa Mosque.

(Source / 08.12.2019)

IOF arrests two Palestinians near Gaza border

GAZA, PALESTINOW.COM — Israeli occupation soldiers abducted, Saturday, two Palestinians near the perimeter fence in the southern part of the besieged and impoverished Gaza Strip.

Media sources said the soldiers abducted the two Palestinians after the army alleged that they crossed the fence.

The two Palestinians were taken to an unknown destination; the Israeli army confirmed that the two were not carrying any weapons.

On Friday, the soldiers injured 64 Palestinians, including 19 children, one paramedic and four women, during the Great March of Return in the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) has reported.

(Source / 08.12.2019)