UN envoy hails contribution of Palestinian women to development

UM Cemil Aqra, a 57-year-old Palestinian woman is seen selling fish to contribute to her family budget in Khan Yunis, Gaza on 7 March 2020. Ali [Jadallah - Anadolu Agency]

UM Cemil Aqra, a 57-year-old Palestinian woman is seen selling fish to contribute to her family budget in Khan Yunis, Gaza on 7 March 2020

United Nations Resident Coordinator Jamie Mcgoldrick yesterday hailed the contributions made by Palestinian women to the development of their communities.

In a statement issued on International Women’s Day, Mcgoldrick said: “The United Nations acknowledges and celebrates the contributions of Palestinian women to the development of their communities.”

He added: “In this context, we commend and support the ongoing efforts of civil society actors and the Government of Palestine to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment.”

Mcgoldrick also said: “While we celebrate progress and achievements, we must also recognise the continued challenges that Palestinian women face, including in the context of the continued Israeli military occupation.

“Across the West Bank and Gaza Strip, we continue to work with all stakeholders to improve women’s safety and security, livelihoods, employment opportunities, political participation, access to education, health care and other services.”

International Women’s Day: 43 Palestinian women held in Israel jails 

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

Closure of Gaza schools extended for 1 week

To date there have been no cases of the coronavirus in Gaza, however 19 cases have been identified in Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank

Palestinian workers spray disinfectant as a precaution to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, in Gaza, on 9 March 2020 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Palestinian workers spray disinfectant as a precaution to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, in Gaza, on 9 March 2020 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Palestinian Education Ministry in Gaza and UNRWA yesterday decided to extend the closure of schools until the end of this week over fears of spreading the coronavirus.

Statements sent separately by the Ministry of Education Ministry and the UNREWA to MEMO, both said that the closure was aimed to tone down fears related to the spread of coronavirus.

Both said that they would re-evaluate the situation on Thursday and decide whether to extend the closure of schools or re-open them.

READ: What you need to know about coronavirus right now 

On Thursday, the Palestinian Authority (PA) Prime Minister Mohamed Shtayyeh announced a presidential decree issued by PA President Mahmoud Abbas that a state of emergency be put into effect across the occupied territories for one month.

During this time, all schools, universities and other institutions must be closed as a countermeasure against the spread of the coronavirus.

The PA insisted that the decree includes the besieged Gaza Strip, but several institutions including the Education Ministry in Gaza and UNRWA decided to suspend work for two days only. Later extending the suspension to the end of this week.

To date there have been no cases of the coronavirus in Gaza, however 19 cases have been identified in Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

New settler-only road will allow Israel to annex West Bank settlement

Israeli occupation forces placed concrete blocks to stop Palestinians travelling along the Bethlehem-Nablus road in the occupied West Bank. [Maan]

Israeli occupation forces place concrete blocks to stop Palestinians travelling along the Bethlehem-Nablus road in the occupied West Bank

Israeli Defence Minister Naftali Bennett today approved a project for a new road for Palestinians that would allow Israel to annex the Ma’aleh Adumim bloc in the E1 zone of the occupied West Bank.

The road, which would connect the village of Azzim, near Ma’aleh Adumim, with the villages of Anata, Hizma and Al-Ram, has been termed the “sovereignty road” by Bennett.

The defence minister explained that the road would be separate from those used by vehicles with Israeli licence plates and would allow Palestinian traffic to bypass the Ma’aleh Adumim bloc, effectively annexing the area.

Bennett called the move the application of “sovereignty in deeds not words”.

Adding that the project marks the embarkation of “the process of connecting Jerusalem with Ma’aleh Adumim”.

“The project will improve the quality of life of the residents in the area, avoid unnecessary friction with the Palestinian population in the area, and most importantly allow for continued settlement construction.”

International Women’s Day: 43 Palestinian women held in Israel jails

According to US President Trump’s Middle East ‘peace plan’, which was unveiled in January, the road needs to be built to allow the formation of a contiguous Palestinian state and has been defined as a “fabric of life” road.

Though Palestinian activists have argued that the E1 project destroys any possibility of a contiguous Palestinian state.

Peace Now reported that once the road is built, Israel can claim that the construction of illegal settlements in the E1 area does not sever the occupied West Bank or preclude the establishment of a contiguous Palestinian state.

The settlement watchdog said the construction of the road “is bad news for Israel as it enables annexation toward rendering a two-state solution insoluble… there is no desire here to improve Palestinian transport, only to expand settlements.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved the construction of 3,500 new settlement units in the E1 area on 25 February, in addition to 46,000 new settlement units which will be built in the rest of the occupied West Bank.

On Trump’s “deal of the century”, Netanyahu said: “Let’s be clear, US President Donal Trump’s administration asked us to take decisions on Judea and Samaria [the occupied West Bank], where we plan to impose our sovereignty.”

Israel: Netanyahu pledges ‘immediate’ annexation of key Palestinian territories if re-elected

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

Israeli Forces Seize Excavators South of Hebron, Deliver Demolition Notice in Jordan Valley

Israeli forces, on Sunday, seized construction equipment in Birin area, south of Hebron, in the southern occupied West Bank, according to a local activist.

Fuad al-‘Amour, the coordinator of the Protection and Steadfastness Committee in Masafer Yatta, told WAFA correspondent that the soldiers seized two excavators belonging to local Palestinian resident Mohammed Abu Turkey.

Also on Sunday, the occupation authorities notified a local Palestinian family in Yarza area, in the northern Jordan Valley, of an order to remove their residential tents and animal barns, according to a local official.

Mutaz Bsharat, an official in charge of the Jordan Valley’s file in Tubas, said Israeli forces handed a notice ordering members of Abu Thaher family to remove their residential tents and animal barns, which were already destroyed in December 2019 and January 2020.

Article 17. of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights states;

(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.
(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

Israeli Soldiers, Settlers Storm Village in Nablus, One Palestinian Arrested

Israeli settlers and Israeli soldiers, on Saturday, stormed the village of Madama in the northern occupied West Bank city of Nablus, Quds News Network (QNN) reports.

The indigenous Palestinians confronted the illegal Israeli settlers, to which Israeli forces responded by firing tear-gas canisters, arresting one Palestinian young man, and causing several cases of inhalation injuries among the Palestinians resisting the invasion.

Locals were reportedly successful in their efforts to force the illegal colonists to withdraw.

Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states that the occupying power [Israel] is prohibited from transferring its own population on to the land in which it occupies [Palestine].

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

THE ISRAELI ARMY DOESN’T HAVE SNIPERS ON THE GAZA BORDER, IT HAS HUNTERS

Israeli soldiers take aim as they lie prone over an earth barrier along the border with the Gaza strip in the kibbutz of Nahal Oz on March 30, 2018, as Palestinians demonstrate on the other side commemorating Land Day

By Gideon Levy 

They’re the best of our boys. One is a “musician from a good high school,” another a “boy scout” who majored in theater.” They’re the snipers who have shot thousands of unarmed protesters along the Gaza border fence.

In the Gaza Strip there are 8,000 permanently disabled young men as a result of the snipers’ actions. Some are leg amputees, and the shooters are very proud of that. None of the snipers interviewed for Hilo Glazer’s frightening story in Haaretz (March 6) has any regrets. If they are feeling at all apologetic it’s because they didn’t spill more blood. One was mocked in his battalion with “here comes the killer.” They all act like murderers. If their actions don’t show it – more than 200 dead as a result of them – then their statements prove that these young men have lost their moral compass. They are lost. They will go on to study, to have careers and to raise families – and will never recover from their blindness. They disabled their victims physically, but their own disabilities are more severe. Their souls were completely twisted. They will never again be moral individuals. They are a danger to society. They lost their humanity, if they ever had it, on the shooting berms facing the Gaza Strip. They are the sons of our friends and the friends of our sons, the young people from the apartment across the hall. Look how they talk.

The soldiers’ talk we once knew – the collection of testimonies on the Six-Day War published in English as “The Seventh Day” – turned into the talk of butchers. Perhaps that’s for the best – we have spared ourselves some hypocrisy – but it’s hard not to be shocked at the depths to which we have sunk. They recalled the number of knees they shot. “I brought in seven-eight knees in one day. Within a few hours, I almost broke his record.” “He got around 28 knees.” They shot at unarmed young men and women who were trying in vain to struggle for their freedom, an issue that couldn’t be more just. “The regular scenario is supposed to be that you hit, break a bone – in the best case, break the kneecap – within a minute an ambulance comes to evacuate him, and after a week he gets a disability pension.”

Not enough for you? “The objective is to cause the inciter minimal damage, so he will stop doing what he’s doing. So I, at least, would try to aim at a fattier place, in the muscle region.” Still not enough? “If you mistakenly hit the main artery of the thigh instead of the ankle, then either you intended to make a mistake or you shouldn’t be a sniper. There are snipers, not many, who ‘choose’ to make mistakes.”

They knew who they were facing. They don’t even refer to their victims as “terrorists,” only “inciters.” One compared them to members of a youth movement.

“Even if you don’t know their precise ‘ranks,’ you can tell by the charisma who the group leader is.”

They chose their victims by their charisma, with a sniper’s precision. Their “leadership aura” has destined young men to a life of disability in the cage that is Gaza. But that was not enough. They become bloodthirsty as only young incited people can be. They wanted more blood, not just blood, a child’s blood. Not just a child’s blood, but in front of his family.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

NGO: ‘ISRAEL’ ARRESTED 41 NEW CHILDREN LAST MONTH

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Israeli authorities last month arrested 41 Palestinian children and jailed them in Ofer prison, according to the Committee of Prisoners and Former Prisoners.

Israeli authorities also imposed heavy fines, estimated at 41,000 Shekel (over $11,000) on jailed children in the same month.

The Committee explained that 20 children, of those arrested last month, were kidnapped from their houses, 6 from streets, 1 for not having permission, 6 were summoned for interrogation before being arrested, and 8 were arrested at military checkpoints.

Two children were brutally attacked and beaten during their arrests and interrogations.

The committee added that in February, 20 children were prosecuted and sentenced to jail periods between 7 months and one year.

The occupation state jails a total of 53 children in poor conditions in its jails. Palestinian children, like adults, face arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment under an Israeli military detention system that denies them basic rights.

The occupation state has the dubious distinction of being the only country in the world that automatically and systematically prosecutes children in military courts that lack fundamental fair trial rights and protections. The occupation state prosecutes between 500 and 700 Palestinian children in military courts each year, according to Defense for Children International.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

HUMAN RIGHTS CENTER CALLS FOR PRESSURING ‘ISRAEL’ TO STOP VIOLATIONS AGAINST PALESTINIAN FEMALE PRISONERS

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- The head of the Prisoners Center for Studies, Ra’fat Hamdouneh, on Monday called on human rights and international organizations to put pressure on the occupation state to stop its violations against 43 Palestinian female prisoners in Israeli jails.

Hamdouneh said in a press conference that the Israeli Prisons Service (IPS) commits countless violations against female prisoners, including medical negligence, raids, denial of essential needs, and ill-treatment during the arrest and interrogation.

He added that the IPS continues to impose fines on the female prisoners, prevent family visits, practice torture, and deliberately jail them with Israeli criminals, who never stop their assaults as well.

Some prisoners were also prevented from taking High School (Tawjihi) and college tests. They were also prevented from having books or new clothes, according to Hamdouneh.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

Israeli occupation forces kidnap 15 Palestinians in West Bank

The Israeli occupation forces kidnapped a father and his son from their house in Jenin

Israeli occupation forces kidnapped on Monday night 15 Palestinian citizens in multiple raids across the occupied West Bank, local and security sources said.

The sources said that the Israeli occupation forces kidnapped four Palestinians after ransacking their houses in al Arroub refugee camp, north of the southern West Bank city of Al Khalil.

In Ramallah, the Israeli occupation forces raided the town of Silwad, northeast of Ramallah city, kidnapping two Palestinians.

A similar predawn military raid was conducted in Bittin village, where the Israeli occupation forces kidnapped one Palestinian.

In the northern West Bank, Israeli occupation forces stormed Tulkarm refugee camp, where they kidnapped two Palestinians.

Soldiers also kidnapped two Palestinians after thoroughly searching their houses in the eastern neighbourhood of Tulkarm city and another from Shweika neighbourhood, north of the city.

Elsewhere in the northern West Bank, local sources confirmed a military raid in Jenin city, resulting in the kidnapping of three Palestinians, including a father and his son.

In Nablus district, Israeli forces barged into Sebastia town, north of the city, and kidnapped one Palestinian.

(Source / 09.03.2020) 

UN: Israeli forces raided 147 Palestinian homes in 10 days in West Bank

The United Nations OCHA has said that the Israeli Occupation forces carried out 147 house raids in the last ten days of February, a report said.

According to the report, a copy of which sent to Palestine Post 24, the Israeli occupation forces carried out 147 search and arrest operations across the West Bank.

The report said that the Israeli occupation forces kidnapped 188 Palestinians, including 17 children during these raids.

Most of the raids were carried out in the governorates of Ramallah (33); Jerusalem (30); and Al Khalil (27).

(Source / 09.03.2020)