Fatah: Palestinians will face Israel’s annexation plan with an Intifada

Palestinian Presidential advisor for Foreign Affairs and International Relations, Nabil Shaath, [File photo]
Palestinian Presidential advisor for Foreign Affairs and International Relations, Nabil Shaath

Senior Fatah member and former Palestinian Foreign Minister Nabeel Shaath said yesterday that Palestinians would face Israel’s plans to annex large swathes of the occupied West Bank with an Intifada, Al-Mujtama magazine reported.

In an interview, Shaath said that all the Palestinian forces agree to face the annexation using all the available resistance means, including political and diplomatic options.

Regarding the Palestinian action on the international arena, Shaath said that there are continuous moves at all levels and the Palestinians depend on their Arab “brothers” to bring their united position to the UN Security Council and the UN Human Rights Commission.

Netanyahu: ‘We will annex 30% of the West Bank area to Israel’ 

The US administration, he explained, “is still dominating the international organisations and imposing its individual decisions.” Adding that he hoped the rise of Russia, the EU and China would decimate US domination of these organisations.

Shaath said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is exploiting the current US administration led by Donald Trump to carry out his “racist” plans which aim to liquidate Palestinian rights.

He called on the ICC to prosecute Israel for its crimes against Palestinians, adding that allowing it to get away with its actions sets a precedent on the international arena.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Israel to demolish 200 Palestinian buildings in East Jerusalem

Smoke rises as Israeli forces begin to raze a building on the grounds that the building was close to the wire barriers, which is continuation of the separation wall, in the neighborhood of Wadi Homs in East Jerusalem on 22 July 2019. [Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency]
Smoke rises as Israeli forces begin to raze a building on the grounds that the building was close to the wire barriers, which is continuation of the separation wall, in the neighborhood of Wadi Homs in East Jerusalem on 22 July 2019

Israeli occupation authorities yesterday delivered an order to demolish 200 decades-old Palestinian-owned industrial structures located in occupied East Jerusalem, reported Wafa news agency.

As with many neighbourhoods in the area surrounding Jerusalem, Wadi Al-Joz is experiencing severe challenges with the aggressive expansion of the Jewish presence in the area.

The chairman of East Jerusalem’s Arab Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Kamal Obeidat, told Wafa that the order was made by recommendation of the Israeli Planning and Zoning Committee and will demolish up to 200 structures including car repair shops, restaurants and other facilities.

Obeidat called the move a “racist order” to destroy the only Palestinian industrial area that serves the city’s 300,000 residents in East Jerusalem in order to build Israeli structures.

READ: Israel policeman who killed disabled Palestinian released

A spokesperson for the Jerusalem Municipality confirmed to the Jerusalem Post that the buildings were being demolished as part of a “building project” but could not provide further details.

Palestinians believe such measures are part of Israel’s Judaisation of the city, which include emptying it of its Palestinian residents.

The demolitions come amid heightened tensions in the city after Israeli forces shot dead Eyad Hallaq, an unarmed Palestinian with mental disabilities, also from the Palestinian neighbourhood of Wadi Al-Joz, where the demolitions are set to occur.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Report: Mossad chief secretly visits Egypt to discuss annexation

Yossi Cohen, director of Israel’s national intelligence agency Mossad on 3 July 2017 [HEIDI LEVINE/AFP/Getty Images]
Yossi Cohen, director of Israel’s national intelligence agency Mossad on 3 July 2017

Israel’s Mossad chief met with the head of Egypt’s General Intelligence Service to discuss annexation of the West Bank, during a secret trip to Cairo a few weeks, the New Arab reported.

Israel’s Yossi Cohen met top ranking Egyptian officials to discuss the annexation of large areas of the occupied West Bank, as well as the situation in Gaza and Trump’s Middle East peace plan, among other issues.

The Mossad chief discussed the likely reaction from Palestinian groups, particularly Hamas, to the annexation of illegal Israeli settlements and the Jordan Valley.

The pair also talked about the possibility of the situation “going out of control”, according to the report.

Sources told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, Israel’s biggest concern is that Palestinians will react violently with suicide operations, a tactic commonly used during the Second Intifada. Tel Aviv fears Jerusalem is especially vulnerable to such violent retaliations, according to the report.

Talks between Cohen and head of Egypt’s General Intelligence Service Major General Abbas Kamel, took place in the presence of the Arab state’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry.

Fatah: Palestinians will face Israel’s annexation plan with an Intifada

Discussions were followed by an Egyptian briefing to Jordanian officials, in which the group talked over a number of points that Cohen made, the source was cited as saying.

Jordanian Prime Minister Omar Al-Razzaz last week threatened to reconsider his country’s relations with Israel over its West Bank annexation plans, stressing Amman would “not accept unilateral Israel moves to annex Palestinian lands”.

King Abdullah II, meanwhile, warned Israeli annexation would lead to a “massive conflict with Jordan”, and a possible end to the 1994 Jordanian-Israeli peace treaty.

Egypt and Jordan are the only two Arab countries in the Middle East to have formal peace agreements with Israel, with Cairo occasionally seeking to mediate between Israel and the Palestinians.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu plans to annex 80 per cent of the West Bank’s illegal settlements under the peace proposal by the Trump administration unveiled earlier this year.

The plan has been widely rejected by Palestinians, as well as the wider Middle Eastern community.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas announced last week all agreements with the US and Israeli governments “including those related to security” would no longer apply, as a result of Tel Aviv’s annexation plans.

US alerts citizens ahead of Israel’s annexation plan

(Source / 01.06.2020)

World Bank: Poverty rates to double as occupation suffocates Palestine

Palestinian children play outside their home in the poverty-stricken quarter of Al-Zaytoon in Gaza City [Ezz Zanoun/Apaimages]
Palestinian children play outside their home in the poverty-stricken quarter of Al-Zaytoon in Gaza City

With Israel’s planned annexation of the West Bank, in contravention of international law, only weeks away, the World Bank and the United Nations have issued stark warnings concerning the Palestinian economy, blighted by the longest occupation in modern times and the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

The number of Palestinians living below the poverty line is expected to double according to the World Bank; increasing to 30 per cent from the current rate of 14 per cent. “Even prior to the Coronavirus pandemic, more than a quarter of Palestinians lived below the poverty line,” said the World Bank. “The share of poor households is now expected to increase to 30% in the West Bank and to 64% in Gaza.”

More striking is the youth unemployment rate which is said to be 38 per cent, well beyond the Middle East and North Africa’s regional average. According to the World Bank, the Palestinian economy is being suffocated by restrictions imposed by Israel on the movement of people and goods.

The United Nations has also echoed concerns raised by the World Bank, warning that the move by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government would stifle financial and aid flows to the Palestinians and “most likely trigger conflict”.

READ: UNRWA launches coronavirus emergency appeal for Palestine refugees

The UN said that “the achievements of the Palestinian government over the last quarter century will fade” adding that “the peace and security situation will worsen, and a hardened and more extremist politics on both sides will inevitably result.”

The Palestinian territories have seen low infection rates after acting quickly to curtail the spread of COVID-19, with three deaths out of 450 cases registered among some five million residents in Gaza and the West Bank. Nonetheless the Palestinian economy is expected to shrink by as much as 11 per cent in the coming year.

The Palestinian economy grew by just one per cent in 2019 and is projected to shrink by as much as 11 per ce,nt this year. The shrinking of the economy is expected to be compounded further by the funding gap in the PA’s budget which is predicted to be over $1.5 billion this year, up from $800 million in 2019.

The World Bank suggested that one way to prevent an “economic collapse” would be to develop a digital economy. “The digital economy can overcome geographic obstacles, foster economic growth and create better job opportunities for Palestinians.

With its tech-savvy young population, the potential is huge” said Kanthan Shankar, World Bank Country Director for West Bank and Gaza. “However, Palestinians should be able to access resources similar to those of their neighbours’, and they should be able to rapidly develop their digital infrastructure as well,” added Shankar.

READ: This pandemic is yet another deadly challenge for the people of occupied Palestine

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Palestinians Protest Israel’s Medical Negligence of Cancer Patient Prisoner

Dozens of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip reportedly staged a demonstration, on Sunday, in protest of what they said Israeli maltreatment of a Palestinian prisoner held in Israeli jail.

The protesters, representing many Islamic and national Palestinian political factions in the coastal enclave, showed solidarity with prisoner Kamal Abu Waer, from the northern West Bank city of Jenin.

The gathering took place outside of the office of International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza city, where a number of participants spoke to the demonstrators.

Representative for the ruling Islamist Hamas party in the Israel-besieged territory, Iyad Abu Fanoun, told the protestors that prisoner Abu Waer, has been suffering from medical negligence, despite the fact that he has been plagued by cancer, requiring special medication which is not provided in Israeli prison.

He further noted that all Palestinian factions, including his own party, have been seeking freedom of all Palestinian prisoners and that Abu Waer is one of those patient prisoners, who must be released immediately.

No further details were reported abut Abu Waer, who is one of around 5,000 Palestinian prisoners others, held by Israel at 20 Israeli jails and detention centers, across the occupied Palestinian West Bank and inside Israel, itself.

Recently, the Hamas party has expressed readiness to hold a prisoner swap deal with Israel, under international mediation.

Since the end of Israel’s 2014 military attack on the besieged Gaza Strip, Israel has claimed that Hamas holds hostage two Israel citizens and two other soldiers, believed to have been dead. In its recent announcement about a possible swap deal, Hamas said it could release the two citizens and release information about the two soldiers, in return for an Israeli release of hundreds of women, children and prisoners suffering health problems.

According to the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS), Abu Waer, from the town of Qabatiya, suffers from cancer of the throat and has undergone 50 radiation treatments.

Recent testing showed that the tumor has increased in size, causing speech problems in addition to swallowing problems, resulting in weight loss.

Prisoner Waer, 46, has been incarcerated since 2003, serving six life terms in Israel’s Gilboa prison, the Palestinian Information reports.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Palestinian Prisoner in Israeli Jail on 21st Day of Hunger Strike

Palestinian prisoner, Sami Janazreh, 47, has embarked on the third hunger strike over the past four years of incarceration.

According to the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society, prisoner Janazreh from the al-Fawwar refugee camp, has been on hunger strike for 21 days consecutively, in protest of his Administrative Detention inside Israeli prison.

In a statement, released Sunday by the society, prisoner Janazreh has been imprisoned since 2016 and has embarked on three hunger strikes, as he has not been charged and has not stood trial.

The statement noted that there are tens of other Palestinian prisoners, who are going the same ordeal as Janazreh and that Israel has placed all those prisoners under administrative detention, since 2011.

The latest strike by prisoner Janazreh, said the prisoners’ society, is considered to be an individual means of protest and pressure on the so-called Israeli Prisons’ Service (IPS), which applies harsh measures against prisoners, in general.

Recently, the IPS transferred Janazreh to a solitary confinement cell at the desert Israeli detention center of Naqab, after spending some time in a solitary confinement cell at the Ayla prison, added the statement.

Noteworthy, Janazreh is a father of three children aged 8, 11, and 17.

The Prisoners’ Society suggested that Israel holds Palestinians under administrative detention, under the pretext of ‘secret evidence’, which the society says is in violation of international norms and conventions, pertaining to Palestinian prisoners.

Administrative detention (AD) is a procedure that allows Israeli occupation forces to hold prisoners indefinitely on secret information without charging them or allowing them to stand trial. The secret information or evidence cannot be accessed by the detainee nor his lawyer, and can according to Israeli military orders, an administrative detention order can be renewed for an unlimited time. The court issues an administrative detention order for a maximum period of six months, subject to renewal.

  •  Administrative detention (AD) is a procedure that allows Israeli occupation forces to hold prisoners indefinitely on secret information without charging them or allowing them to stand trial. The secret information or evidence cannot be accessed by the detainee nor his lawyer, and can according to Israeli military orders, an administrative detention order can be renewed for an unlimited time. The court issues an administrative detention order for a maximum period of six months, subject to renewal.

Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Assocation

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Israeli Police Forces Demolish 4 Palestinian-owned Homes Inside Israel

Israeli occupation police, on Sunday, demolished four homes under construction in the Arab city of Tira, inside the 1948 occupied lands, known as Israel.

The justification given by authorities for the demolition, was the alleged lack of a building permit, Shehab News reported.

According to witnesses, police stormed the city, isolated the homes belonging to the Palestinian Khuffash family, preventing anyone from entering the area and proceeded to raze the buildings.

The owner of the demolished houses, Ibrahim Khuffash, stated that the case was still going through the court process, and a ruling had not yet been made.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Israeli Troops Abduct 23 Palestinians Across the West Bank

Israeli Troops reportedly abducted, earlier on Monday, at least 23 Palestinian residents, including a child and a former prisoner, across the Palestinian West Bank.

In Ramallah city, local sources confirmed that Israeli troops invaded the Almazr’a village, north of the city, as well as the Ni’lin village, to the west, before they abducted four residents, identified as Amro Abu Qre’, 24, an ex-prisoner, Mohammad Hannoun, 28 and his brother, Ahmad Hannoun, 26.

In the southern West Bank city of Hebron, Israeli troops abducted six residents, including Ameen Alsaleeby, 18, a high-school student and child Khalil Za’leeq, 16. Local sources in the city said that all those abducted were taken to an Israeli military post that is a part of the Israeli colonial settlement of Karmi Tsour, as well as to the Etzion military post, north of Hebron.

Also in Hebron, Israeli troops invaded the Tabqa village, south of the city and abducted Faker Abu Ras, 25 and Ahmad Abu Ras. The troops also invaded the al-Fawwar refugee camp in the city, before they abducted Ahmad Jamal and Ataiya Alnajjar, 36. Witnesses said that Israeli soldiers vandalized the homes of the two Palestinians, as well.

In the West Bank city of Jericho, Israeli troops abducted five other residents, after having invaded the Jiftlick village, north of the city. Local sources identified those abducted as Amin Annouz, Jom’a Jahaleen, Anwar Abu Jouda and his two sons Raed and Jehad.

Meanwhile, Israeli troops in the northern West Bank city of Tulkarem, abducted three residents from the Alshouka neighborhood, north of the city. They were identified as Abdallah Barakat, 25, Mohammad Hanoun, 26, Samir Subhi and Mohammad Mahdawi, 26.

In Nablus city, Israeli troops abducted three Palestinian residents after having invaded the Balata refugee camp. The abducted Palestinians were identified as Ayham Arayshi, 20, Mohammad Arasyshi, 20, Wa’el Abu Mustafa, 17.

In the meantime, sources in the internationally-recognized occupied East Jerusalem, Israeli troops abducted two Palestinians, identified as Jehad Qous and Rawhi Alkalghasi.

Noteworthy, Israeli troops’ practice of abduction has been recently been stepped up, as Israeli leaders have declared their intention to annex the Palestinian West Bank to the occupation state of Israel.

Many observers suggest that such an annexation is illegal, based on international law and relevant United Nations’ resolutions and that if Israel goes ahead with the plan, the region could enter a new cycle of violence.

According to United Nations’ Security Council resolution, 242 of 1967, Israel is an occupying power that should immediately withdraw its forces from Arab and Palestinian lands, including the West Bank, which it occupied by force in June 4, 1967.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Saudi, ‘Israel’ engaged in secret talks over Al Aqsa mosque custody

Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- The occupation state and Saudi Arabia have been conducting secret talks about including Saudi representatives in the Islamic Waqf Council at the Al Aqsa mosque in occupied Jerusalem, Israel Hayom reported Monday.

“These are sensitive and secret discussions conducted with ambiguity and low intensity with a small team of diplomats and senior security officials from Israel, the US and Saudi Arabia as part of negotiations to progress the Deal of the Century,” said senior Saudi diplomats to Israel Hayom.

The move was said to come as Jordan is reportedly increasingly worried by the levels of Turkish influence in Palestinian affairs and matters concerning East Jerusalem, according to the newspaper.

Palestinians who were added to the council in recent months have allegedly been allowing for increased involvement of Islamic-Turkish organizations in the holy mosque, under the auspices of Turkey.

As a result, Jordan has sent messages to the occupation state and the US that they would be ready to soften their position when it comes to integrating Saudi representatives into the Waqf Council, claimed the newspaper.

Jordan’s royal family is the custodianship of Jerusalem Muslim and Christian holy sites. The legacy traces back to 1924 when the Supreme Muslim Council, the highest Muslim body in charge of Muslim community affairs in Mandatory Palestine, accepted Hussein bin Ali (Sharif of Mecca) as custodian of Al-Aqsa. The custodianship became a Hashemite legacy administered by consecutive Jordanian kings.

KIn 1967, the occupation state occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, which were both under the Jordan control, but the custodianship of holy sites in Jerusalem remained with Jordan.

(Source / 01.06.2020)

Israeli forces arrest two worshipers, allow 127 settlers to storm Al Aqsa mosque

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Dozens of Israeli settlers on Monday stormed the courtyards of Al Aqsa mosque, while Israeli forces arrested two worshipers.

A source in the Department of Islamic Waqf told QNN that 127 extremist settlers, including 37 religious extremists from religious schools, stormed the courtyards of the holy mosque this morning.

Israeli forces had arrested dozens of worshipers and prevented them from visiting the holy mosque for a week.

Israeli forces also arrested two worshipers this morning after breaking into their houses in the old city.

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(Source / 01.06.2020)