IOF soldiers fire at Palestinian citizens in Al-Khalil

AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– Israeli occupation forces (IOF)
fired at Palestinian citizens in Arub refugee camp in Al-Khalil and at Beit Ummar village to the north of the city on Tuesday, local sources reported.

They said that young men at the entrance to the refugee camp threw stones at the invading troops.

In the village, the IOF soldiers occupied a house that is under construction at a late night hour on Monday prompting clashes with neighbors and civilians in the vicinity.

(www.palestine-info.co.uk / 20.09.2011)

Demonstrations planned to support UN bid

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The West Bank will witness large demonstrations Wednesday in support of the UN statehood bid, and some institutions are encouraging their employees and students to take the day off to attend.

In Ramallah, Palestinians are expected to gather in the early morning for a march to the tomb of late President Yasser Arafat.

An official from the Union of Workers, Mueen Insawi, told Ma’an that the union decided to suspend work at 10 a.m. to allow employees to participate in the marches.

Some transportation will also be free to allow people to attend.

The Birzeit University student senate has also announced that it will be suspending all lectures from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. in order to allow students to participate.

The ministry of education will also suspend classes during the rallies.

In Bethlehem, Muhammad Al-Masri, a Fatah member, told Ma’an that marches will head toward the Nativity square. All universities and schools in the city will be participating, he said.

In Gaza, the government has banned demonstrations in favor of the initiative.

“Seeking to prevent any moves that could further disagreement and rivalry, Hamas and Fatah agreed to avoid any popular activities, or rallies both pro or against the UN bid,” a statement said.

Fatah leader Thiab al-Louh  on Monday denied that an agreement had been reached in the Gaza Strip to prevent the organization of rallies supporting the UN bid.

Al-Louh said the claims “represent Hamas’ own attitude,” noting that Fatah had asked that the public be allowed enough freedom to express “their feelings at this historic stage.”

(www.maannews.net / 20.09.2011)

Let Palestine be Palestine: Letter to President Obama

From: U.S. Ambassador Charles Ceci

To President Barack Obama

U.S. Ambassador Charles Cecil

U.S. Ambassador, Charles Cecil

September 17, 2011

Dear Mr. President:

Just think for a minute—what would happen if the United States abstained when the Palestinian question comes before the UN Security Council in the next week or two?

The resolution would pass. The world would be stunned. The United States would enter an entirely new era in our relations with the Muslim countries of the world. The vision you outlined in Cairo for better relations with the Islamic world would take the largest step forward of your presidency. The United States would once again have regained the high moral ground we so often claim to occupy. The energies loosed by the “Arab spring” would continue to be devoted to their own domestic affairs rather than being diverted into condemning the United States. We are hypocrites when we claim to want justice for the Palestinians but we do nothing meaningful to help achieve this.

On the other hand, if the United States vetoes the Palestinian request for statehood, we will damage our position in the Islamic world—not merely the Arab World—for untold years to come. We will become the object of retribution throughout the Muslim world, and will give new energy to the lagging efforts of al-Qaida to retaliate against us. I served my country 36 years in the Foreign Service of the United States, ten assignments in ten Muslim countries. I know the power of this issue. Why would we want to give new impetus to anti-American sentiment throughout the Muslim world?

Mr. Netanyahu’s office has issued a statement saying “Peace will be achieved only through direct negotiations with Israel.” You know, and I know, that Mr. Netanyahu has no intention of concluding a just and fair peace with the Palestinian Authority. His only concern is to continue the inexorable construction of more settlements, creating more “facts on the ground” until the idea of an independent Palestinian state becomes a mere memory of a bygone era. When Israel declared its independence in 1948 it did not do so after direct negotiations with Palestine. If Israel really wants to negotiate with the Palestinians, why would negotiating with an independent Palestinian government, on an equal footing, deter it from engaging in these negotiations?

The Reagan administration launched an international information campaign under the slogan “Let Poland be Poland.” It’s time we let Palestine be Palestine.

Abstain from this upcoming vote. Just think about it.

Sincerely yours, Charles O. Cecil U.S. Ambassador, retired
(Ambassador to the Republic of Niger during the Clinton Administration)

Write or Telephone those working for you in Washington.

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20500
(202) 456-1414
White House Comment Line: (202) 456-1111
Fax: (202) 456-2461

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
Department of State
Washington, DC 20520

State Department Public Information Line: (202) 647-6575

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E-mail Congress and the White House

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(occupiedpalestine.wordpress.com / 20.09.2011)

Lebanon warns against Israel intrusion

Lebanon has warned about officially complaining to the UN Security Council against Israel for its encroachment into the Lebanese territorial waters, Press TV reports.

The Lebanese cabinet issued the warning in a session on Tuesday during which it determined the line of demarcation for the country’s exclusive economic zone in its maritime borders, a Press correspondent reported.

In July, Israel approved a map of what it described as “proposed maritime borders.” Lebanon, on the other hand, condemned the move, calling it “an aggression.”

Meanwhile, Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri said in the cabinet meeting that Lebanon has the right to preserve its natural resources.

Berri urged Lebanese authorities to speed up the process of contracting foreign companies to carry out drilling projects on the oil and gas fields in the exclusive economic zone.

Lebanese President Michel Sleiman is also expected to raise the issue on the sidelines of the annual gathering of world leaders at the UN General Assembly, which begins on September 20.

Israel also violates Lebanon’s airspace on an almost daily basis.

In 2009, Lebanon lodged a complaint with the United Nations, presenting over 7,000 documents pertaining to Israeli violations of the Lebanese airspace and territory.

(www.presstv.ir / 20.09.2011)

‘Palestinians need just two more Security Council votes in bid for statehood’

Palestinian Foreign Minister says attempts underway to win over Gabon, Nigeria and Bosnia-Herzegovina, in quest for UNSC majority; U.S. has vowed to veto the proposal if it cannot garner a blocking majority.

Palestinian officials have so far enlisted the support of at least six or seven members of the 15-member Security Council in their bid to gain United Nations recognition as a sovereign state, a senior official said Tuesday.

“They are trying to convince two or three more Security Council members to vote in favor of accepting Palestine as a UN member state,” Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riad Malki said.

The Palestinians hope to enlist nine members behind them, even if “the U.S. is going to veto it and embarrass itself,” he told Voice of Palestine Radio from New York.

For any decision to pass in the 15-member Council, nine affirmative votes are needed, as well as no veto by any of the permanent Security Council members. The United States holds a veto and has promised to use it, if necessary.

Even as Palestinian diplomats work feverishly to enlist the nine votes to achieve a moral victory – even if it results in a technical defeat – US diplomats were working frantically to muster a blocking minority of seven.

Washington wants to avoid having to use its veto and appear as having single-handedly foiled the Palestinian bid.

So far only Germany and Colombia, which receives much financial support from the U.S. for fighting rebels and drug lords, are said to be with the US and Israel. France and Britain remain unclear.

The Palestinians are trying to win over Gabon, Nigeria and Bosnia-Herzegovina. The first, west-central African state seemed to have made up its mind to vote for the Palestinians, but the other two remained hesitant, Malki said.

Portugal, earlier still defined as undecided, by Tuesday seemed inclined to vote with the Palestinians, Israeli officials said.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in New York Monday he would go ahead and submit the membership application on Friday, immediately after his address to the General Assembly’s 66th session.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, ahead of his scheduled departure to the General Assembly session late Tuesday or early Wednesday, called on Abbas to meet with him in New York.

“I call on the chairman of the Palestinian Authority to open direct negotiations in New York, which would continue in Jerusalem and Ramallah,” he said in statement from his Jerusalem office.

“I propose to President Abbas to begin peace negotiations instead of wasting time on futile unilateral measures.”

Abbas replied he was willing to meet Netanyahu in New York, but for protocol purposes, not to relaunch negotiations.

“I am ready to meet any Israeli official at any time he wants, but to meet only for meeting, I think it’s useless,” he told Fox News.

Abbas has conditioned negotiations on an Israeli construction freeze in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. Netanyahu insists on negotiations without preconditions. The last round of talks broke off one year ago.

Malki said Abbas was under heavy pressure not to submit the application.

Europe is trying to convince Abbas not to go to the Security Council, but to the General Assembly, for a watered-down request.

“The president was clear in his position,” Malki said.

“He told them we are committed to going to the Security Council for full UN membership and we will not accept anything less.”

But a senior Israeli government official warned this would be a “mistake” that goes against past Israeli-Palestinian interim deals.

“It’s impossible to impose peace from the outside. It won’t happen,” Mark Regev told correspondents in Jerusalem.     Meanwhile, an opinion poll published Tuesday said the vast majority of Palestinians (83 per cent) support Abbas’ bid.

The poll by the Ramallah-based Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) interviewed some 1,200 Palestinians in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza between September 15-17, and had a margin of error of 3 per cent.

(www.haaretz.com / 20.09.2011)

Israel attacks Gaza on eve of UN bid

Israeli troops have launched an attack on the northeastern Gaza Strip on the eve of the presentation of the Palestinians’ proposal for membership in the United Nations.

The assault targeted an area in the northeast of Gaza City on Monday, a Press TV correspondent reported.

Residential buildings were struck during the offensive, but there are no reports of any casualties so far.

Although Israeli military forces officially withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005, they still frequently attack the territory.

The Palestinian Authority will formally submit a request to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon for approval of Palestine’s membership in the world body on September 20, during the 66th session of the UN General Assembly.

(www.presstv.ir / 19.09.2011)

Geweld Jemen laait weer op

Na enkele maanden rust hebben troepen in Jemen weer keihard opgetreden tegen tienduizenden betogers. Vandaag zijn minstens 31 betogers gedood, nadat er zondag al 26 om het leven waren gekomen. In de beide dagen zouden bijna duizend gewonden zijn gevallen, aldus activisten.

De demonstraties in hoofdstad Sanaa en de stad Taez zijn gericht tegen president Ali Abdullah Saleh. Hij verblijft sinds juni in buurland Saoedi-Arabië, maar weigert formeel af te treden. Hij ging naar Saoedi-Arabië om te herstellen van de verwondingen door een bomaanslag in zijn paleis. De maanden ervoor waren er al massale demonstraties tegen de 69-jarige Saleh, die al 33 jaar aan de macht vasthoudt.

‘We aanvaarden niets minder dan het directe vertrek van president Saleh en zijn mannen’, zeiden de betogers. ‘Saleh’s familie is een gevaar geworden voor de regio.’

In de straten van Sanaa klonken de hele dag schotenwisselingen tussen regeringstroepen onder leiding van Saleh’s zoon Ahmed Ali en de betogers, gesteund door manschappen van de dissidente generaal Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar.
Onder de slachtoffers van vandaag zijn drie dissidente militairen en twee kinderen.

Slachting
‘Help mij, oh mijn God, kijk naar deze slachting’, riep de vader van een jongen die stierf door een kogel in zijn hoofd. ‘We reden gewoon in de auto. Ik stapte uit om wat eten te kopen en liet mijn twee jongens in de auto. Toen hoorde ik de oudste schreeuwen. De jongste was gedood door een schot recht door zijn hoofd.’

Jemen staat bekend als het armste land van het Midden-Oosten. Het land is grotendeels afhankelijk van internationale hulp en bijna uitgeputte oliebronnen. Het land is erg onveilig. De Jemenitische tak van Al-Qaeda heeft veel aanhangers en beheerst gebieden rond de stad Zinjibar.

Aftreden
Leiders uit omliggende landen proberen al maanden tot een akkoord te komen over het aftreden van Saleh. De secretaris-generaal van de Golf Samenwerkingsraad (GCC), Abdullatif al-Zayani, is maandag in Sanaa aangekomen voor nieuwe gesprekken. Ook een bemiddelaar van de Verenigde Naties, Jamal Benomar, is gearriveerd. Ze hadden Saleh al drie keer bijna overgehaald om af te treden, maar de president weigerde op de valreep steeds mee te werken.

Amnesty International waarschuwde vandaag dat Jemen op de rand staat van een burgeroorlog. ‘De mensen die vreedzaam hebben betoogd voor verandering worden steeds gefrustreerder door de politieke impasse.’

(www.parool.nl / 19.09.2011)

Media activists needed in Palestine

Palestone, (Pal Telegraph) – The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) is a Palestinian-led movement committed to resisting the Israeli occupation in Palestine by using nonviolent, direct-action methods and principles. Founded by a small group of primarily Palestinian and Israeli activists in August 2001, ISM aims to support and strengthen the Palestinian popular resistance by providing the Palestinian people with two resources, international solidarity and an international voice.
For detailed information on ISM please visit www.palsolidarity.org

Interning / volunteering with ISM: You will be based in the West Bank, experienced and interested activists may be placed in Gaza. Apart from gaining reporting and photography experience, you will also be networking with existing media outlets and develop skills during media meetings on reporting the occupation of Palestine. ISM is seeking a minimum 3 month commitment, and will provide accommodation during your stay.

ISM is a non-hierarchical solidarity movement. Consequently, you will not be treated as a classical intern but rather as a fellow voluntary member of the activist group.

Fields of work:

Learn to humanize the voice of the struggle by reporting on events ranging from anti-occupation demonstrations to house raising demolitions.
Establish contacts with local Palestinian and international media
Help refining the ISM media strategy by developing and incorporating own ideas on information spreading techniques

Application documents: Please send in any relevant information about yourself and experience or background you may have in reporting and journalism. Express why you are applying for this voluntary internship and what you hope to gain from it. Send an example of your written work and an optional photo sample of your work.

Applications are accepted year round and should be sent to:palreports@gmail.com
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The voice is the movement. Let it be heard. We wish you the best of luck and hope to see you reporting in Palestine.

(networkedblogs.com / 19.09.2011)

Faillissement van het PVV gedachtengoed I

De PVV doet halsstarrige pogingen om haar gedachtengoed vast te houden, maar hier blijken toch kleine barstjes in te komen. Een belangrijk bespreekpunt  is altijd het dubbele paspoort / nationaliteit geweest voor deze eenmans partij.

De voorman van de PVV, G. Wilders, heeft steeds aangegeven dat hij tegen twee
paspoorten en nationaliteiten was en is, maar zelf heeft hij nog steeds geen openheid
gegeven over de status van mevrouw Wilders, die uit Hongarije is gekomen.  In 2010 heeft Alexander Pechtold hier reeds vragen over gesteld.  De PVV is van mening dat
iemand met twee paspoorten minder loyaal zouden zijn aan Nederland.

In oktober 2010 kon G. Wilders weer de barricaden op toen hij er achter kwam dat de staatssecretaris van volksgezondheidszorg, Marlies Veldhuijzen van Zanten-Hyllner, naast de Nederlandse nationaliteit ook nog een Zweeds paspoort had.  Meneer Wilders kwam tot een motie waarin werd opgeroepen dat de staatssecretaris haar tweede paspoort in zou leveren; de motie heeft geen meerderheid gehaald.

De minister van buitenlandse zaken, Uri Rosenthal, is geboren uit joodse ouders en gehuwd met een vrouw uit Israël. Dit hoeft niet te betekenen dat beiden dubbele nationaliteiten hebben, maar men zou er een vraagteken bij kunnen zetten. Echter de PVV heeft hier geen vragen over gesteld. Misschien is het van minder belang geworden, onder belang van het gedogen, misschien zal de PVV geen vragen meer stellen over dubbele paspoorten.

Nu blijkt dat een statenlid van de PVV in Gelderland, Petra Kouwenberg, die aangekondigd werd in de media als het multiculti gezicht van de PVV, nog steeds een dubbele nationaliteit te hebben. Mevrouw Kouwenberg heeft naast de Nederlandse nationaliteit ook een Turks paspoort. Van de laatste heeft ze afstand willen doen, maar dat is – tot nu toe – niet gelukt.

Haar partijleider heeft echter geen consequenties verbonden aan de tweede nationaliteit voor het statenlid, ook geen afspraak vooraf gemaakt dat mevrouw geen statenlid kon worden als ze het tweede paspoort niet had laten schrappen.  Het is geen punt van belang meer voor G. Wilders en de PVV reageert er ook niet meer op … alleen nog wat geblaat in de marge op het moment als er een boerkaverbod wordt
afgekondigd  ….  “de-islamisering”  heet het dan.

Het gevecht tegen de dubbele nationaliteit is verstomd en niet meer van belang voor de PVV, mogelijk al uit het partijprogramma geschrapt … wat volgt?

© KhamakarPress

Presbyterians want to make pro-Palestine statement

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A committee within  the Louisville-based Presbyterian Church (USA) says the denomination should dump  investments in three American companies it says profit from the  Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The committee says the companies – Caterpillar, Motorola and Hewlett-Packard – profit from Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands.

The divestment recommendation must be approved by the church’s legislative  General Assembly in 2012 to become policy.

A report from the denomination’s Committee on Mission Responsibility Through  Investment says Caterpillar produces bulldozers and Hewlett-Packard and Motorola  Solutions produce technology used to bolster the Israeli occupation of  Palestinian lands, and Jewish settlements on them.

Matt Goldberg, community relations director of the Jewish Community of  Louisville, told The Courier-Journal that such recommendations do not “advance  the cause of peace in the region.”

(www.kentucky.com / 19.09.2011)