Israel Denies All Gaza Christians Travel Permits to Jerusalem for Easter

21 APR8:41 PM

For the first time, Israeli authorities decided this year to deny all travel permits to Palestinian Christians from Gaza to celebrate Easter as they do each year, by processing from Bethlehem to Jerusalem to follow the path of Jesus in the Resurrection.

The number of permits issued by the occupying Israeli military authorities have diminished each year, and have included blanket bans on anyone under age 55 – but this is the first year that the Israeli military decided to allow zero Palestinian Christians from Gaza to travel to Jerusalem for Easter.

There are around 1,100 Palestinian Christians in Gaza, many of whom are descended from the earliest Christians in Palestine (where Christianity originated).

While some practice the Latin faith and mark Easter on the 21st of April this year, many others are Eastern Orthodox, and celebrate Easter on the 28th. Their traditional ceremonies involve a commemoration of Palm Sunday in Bethlehem, then a procession from the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, where Christians believe Jesus was resurrected after death.

According to the Israeli human rights organization Gisha, “The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) published the quotas set by Israel for holiday permits to be granted to for Christian Palestinians living under Israel’s control. The quota allocated by COGAT for holiday permits for Gaza residents this Easter is limited to only 200 people over the age of 55, and only for travel abroad; the quotas for West Bank residents are limited to 400 permits for travel abroad, and visits in Israel. This means that Palestinian families separated between Gaza, Israel and the West Bank will not be able to mark the Easter holiday together. It also means that all Christians in Gaza are being denied access to family and to the holy sites in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

“This is the first time that we know of that Israel is outright denying access of Gaza Christians to the West Bank and Israel (on Christmas or Easter). It is also a far smaller quota than previous holidays, when COGAT set quotas of at least 500 permits, or more. Such a sweeping restriction cannot be justified by security needs.

“Israel’s decision to outright deny movement between Gaza and the West Bank this Easter constitutes a further violation of Palestinians’ fundamental rights to freedom of movement, religious freedom, and family life. The increased restriction on the movement of Palestinian Christians points to further implementation of Israel’s ‘separation policy’: a policy restricting movement between Gaza and the West Bank which deepens the split between the two parts of the occupied Palestinian territory.

“Israel allowed only 200 Christians from Gaza, who are over 55-years-old to travel only to the Jordanian Kingdom through the Allenby border crossing, and did not issue permits for those hoping to visit the Church of Nativity in Bethlehem City and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in East Jerusalem.”

The Israeli rights group Gisha reported complaints against the Israeli authorities regarding the restrictions imposed on Christians who want to travel during the Jewish holiday of Passover, also known as Pesach, which coincides with Easter.

The ban on Gaza Christians comes after Israeli military authorities announced the full closure of the West Bank and Gaza for Palestinian residents during the week of Passover, from April 19th to 27th. Israeli military authorities, which control all aspects of life for the occupied Palestinians living under their rule in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, frequently closing all Palestinian areas and preventing Palestinians from moving between Palestinian towns during periods of Jewish holidays.

Gisha said, “This is a flagrant violation of the freedom of movement, freedom of worship and freedom of enjoying family life for the Christians in Gaza,” noting that the Strip is an example of a “wider Israeli racist policy.” Gisha added, “Imposing such sweeping restrictions on movement cannot be justified by security needs.”

The rights group also stressed in a statement last week, “Israel is increasingly restricting movement between Gaza and the West Bank so as to deepen the separation between Palestinians torn between parts of the occupied Palestinian territory, and by doing so, advance and legitimize its annexation of the West Bank.”

(Source / 21.04.2019) 

International Campaign To Boycott Puma Company, The Israeli Union Sponsor

Days Of Palestine [ BDS] – BDS organizes an international campaign aiming to boycott Puma clothing and sports equipment as it supports the Zionist illegal settlements in the Palestinian territories and is considered to be the official sponsor of the Israeli Football Association (IFA).

On Saturday, June 15, the campaign has selected the world’s largest campaign, marking the 52th anniversary of the occupation of 67 territories by the Zionist entity.

It calls on everyone to move towards the shops of the company “Puma” to view the violations of the occupation against Palestinian athletes, and the dissemination of the issue through social networking sites, boycott the products of the company and urge everyone to do so.

The campaign will also deliver the company’s branches around the world a protest message from 200 Palestinian clubs.

(Source / 21.04.2019) 

Lieberman, who wants to cut off Palestinians’ heads, to become defence minister

Regarding last week’s prisoners’ hunger strike, he said: “Leave them starving to death.”

The Russian nightclub bouncer, Avigdor Lieberman, who wanted to cut the heads of the Palestinian with his axe, is likely becoming the new Israeli defence minister.

Israeli MK David Bitan told Israeli radio 103 FM on Sunday morning that Lieberman is to hold the defence portfolio again.

Lieberman resigned form this ministry during the last government because he said he did not have enough power to enable him to assassinate Palestinian leaders and attack civilians.

Commenting in the existence of Palestinians in their homes, which were occupied in 1948, he said: “There is nothing to be done. We need to pick up an axe and cut off their heads.”

Lieberman (1).jpg

(Source / 21.04.2019) 

PCHR: “On 55th Friday of Great March of Return and Breaking Siege, Israeli Forces Wound 100 Civilians, including 23 Children, 5 Women, 4 Paramedics, and 4 Journalists”

20 APR12:53 AM

The Palestinian Centre For Human Rights (PCHR): On Friday, 19 April 2019, in excessive use of force against peaceful protesters on the 55th Friday of the Great March of Return and Breaking the Siege, Israeli forces wounded 100 civilians, including 23 children, 5 women, 4 paramedics, and 4 journalists, in the eastern Gaza Strip.  Two of those wounded sustained serious wounds.

According to observations by PCHR’s fieldworkers, the Israeli forces who stationed in prone positions and in military jeeps along the fence with Israel continued to use excessive force against the protesters by firing bullets and tear gas canisters at them.

As a result, dozens of the protesters were hit with bullets and teargas canisters without posing any imminent threat or danger to the life of soldiers.

During this week, Israeli forces have escalated their attacks against the medical personnel in the field, wounding 4 members of them and targeting an ambulance belonging to the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) in eastern Khan Younis with a teargas canister directly while in field and evacuating those wounded.

This indicates that there is an Israeli systematic policy to target the medical personnel and obstruct their humanitarian work that is guaranteed under the rules of the international humanitarian law.

On Friday, 19 April 2019, the incidents were as follows:

At approximately 16:00, thousands of civilians, including women, children and entire families, started swarming to the five encampments established by the Supreme National Authority of Great March of Return and Breaking the Siege adjacent to the border fence with Israel in eastern Gaza Strip cities.

Hundreds of protesters, including children and women,  gathered adjacent to the border fence with Israel in front of each encampment and its vicinity tens  and hundreds of meters away from the fence. The protesters chanted slogans, raised flags, and in very limited incidents attempted to approach the border fence and throw stones at the Israeli forces.

Although the protesters gathered in areas open to the Israeli snipers stationed on the top of the sand berms and military watchtowers and inside and behind the military jeeps, the Israeli forces fired live and rubber bullets in addition to a barrage of tear gas canisters.

The Israeli shooting, which continued at around 19:00, resulted in the injury of 100 civilians, including 23 children, 5 women, 4 paramedics, and 4 journalists. Thirty-three of those wounded were hit with live bullets and shrapnel, 42 were directly hit with tear gas canisters and 13 were hit with rubber bullets. In addition, dozens of civilians suffered tear gas inhalation and seizures due to tear gas canisters that were fired by the Israeli forces from the military jeeps and riffles in the eastern Gaza Strip.

The following table shows the number of civilian casualties due to the Israeli forces’ suppression of the Great March of Return since its beginning on 30 March:

KilledWounded
Total20312161
Children442351
Women2367
Journalists2198
Medical personnel3194
Persons with disabilities8Undefined
Note:Among those wounded, 543 are in serious condition and 137 had their lower or upper limbs amputated; 123 lower-limb amputations, 14 upper-limb amputations, and 25 children had their limbs amputated according to the Ministry of Health.  The number of those wounded only include those wounded with live bullets and directly hit with tear gas canisters, as there have been thousand others who suffered tear gas inhalation and sustained bruises.

PCHR reiterates Palestinians’ right to peaceful assembly to confront Israel and its forces’ denial of the legitimate and inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to self-determination, right to return and right to end the occupation of the Palestinian territory.

PCHR stresses that the Israeli forces should stop using excessive force and respond to the legitimate demands of the demonstrators, particularly lifting the closure which is the real solution to end the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

PCHR reiterates the reported published in February by the UN Commission of Inquiry which emphasizes what came by PCHR and other Palestinian and international human rights organizations.  The report at the time concluded that the Israeli violations may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

PCHR emphasizes that continuously targeting civilians, who exercise their right to peaceful assembly or while carrying out their humanitarian duty, is a serious violation of the rules of international law, international humanitarian law, the ICC Rome Statute and Fourth Geneva Convention.

Thus, PCHR reiterates its call upon the ICC Prosecutor to open an official investigation in these crimes and to prosecute and hold accountable all those applying or involved in issuing orders within the Israeli Forces at the security and political echelons.

PCHR also emphasizes that the High Contracting Parties to the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention should fulfill their obligation under Article 1; i.e., to respect and ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances and their obligations under Article 146 to prosecute persons alleged to commit grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

PCHR calls upon Switzerland, in its capacity as the Depository State for the Convention, to demand the High Contracting Parties to convene a meeting and ensure Israel’s respect for this Convention, noting that these grave breaches constitute war crimes under Article 147 of the same Convention and Protocol (I) Additional to the Geneva Conventions regarding the guarantee of Palestinian civilians’ right to protection in the occupied territories.

(Source / 20.04.2019) 

Israeli Soldiers Detain Groom, His Uncle, During Wedding Dinner In Jerusalem

20 APR3:06 AM

Israeli soldiers and police officers invaded, Friday, a wedding dinner party in the al-‘Isawiya village, in occupied Jerusalem, and detained the groom and his uncle.

A video published by Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan (Silwanic) on its Facebook page showed many officers invading the area and detaining the groom and his uncle.

Silwanic stated that the soldiers invaded the party because of Palestinian flags that were raised there, and demanded their immediate removal.

The soldiers then detained the groom and his uncle, and took them to a police station to sign an affidavit that all Palestinian flags will be removed, and no flags will be raised, or face imprisonment and high fines.

Video By Silwanic:

(Source / 20.04.2019)  

Israeli Soldiers Abduct A Palestinian Near Hebron

20 APR7:17 PM

Israeli soldiers abducted, Saturday, a young Palestinian man after stopping him at a military roadblock, south of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and took him to an unknown destination.

Eyewitnesses said the soldiers installed a military roadblock at “Zeev” junction, and abducted Mohammad Ibrahim Jabarin, 19.

They added that the soldiers stopped and searched dozens of cars and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards.

In related news, the soldiers invaded several neighborhoods in Hebron city, and closed the main entrances of Sa’ir and Halhoul towns, north of Hebron, before stopping and searching dozens of cars, and examined the ID cards of the passengers.

(Source / 20.04.2019) 

Zionist armies bombarded several areas in the Gaza Strip

GAZA, PALESTINOW.COM — The Israeli army and its Air Force fired, Friday, several missiles and shells into a number of areas, east of Gaza city, and east of the al-Boreij refugee camp, in central Gaza Strip, causing property damage.

Media sources said an Israeli army drone filled a missile into an area, east of the Zeitoun neighborhood, southeast of Gaza city, before the soldiers fired shells into the same location.

They added that the soldiers also fired four shells at three targets, east of Juhr ad-Deek area, east of Gaza city, causing serious damage.

Furthermore, the soldiers fired two artillery shells into an area, east of the al-Boreij refugee camp, in central Gaza, causing damage.

(Source / 20.04.2019) 

Georges Ibrahim Abdallah’s statement for Palestinian Prisoners’ Day 2019

Georges Ibrahim Abdallah issued the following statement on the occasion of Palestinian Prisoners’ Day 2019. The imprisoned Arab Communist struggler for Palestine has been jailed in French prisons for 34 years, despite being eligible for release since 1999. The U.S. government has repeatedly intervened in an attempt to prevent his release from prison, while a growing movement in Lebanon, France and internationally demands his liberation.

Translated from the French at Collectif Palestine Vaincra

Dear comrades, dear friends;

The conditions of detention of the Palestinian Resistance strugglers in Zionist jails have been worsening in recent times.

Since the beginning of the year, Gilad Erdan, the Israeli Minister of Internal Security, seeks to impose a “new reality” upon our fellow prisoners with the aim of reversing or simply extinguishing the rights that they have acquired through multople, courageous struggles in past years. Raids, searches and other forms of repression are escalating in the various Israeli prisons. The special units, heavily armed for repression, are engaged in the worst excesses during these various invasions. There were over 120 prisoners wounded in Ketziot in the repression of protests since February, as well as in Ofer, the Negev prison and elsewhere in the other detention centers….

All of this is meant to intimidate and to multiply the difficulties of our comrades as they are unable to break them: confiscation of personal items, isolation, cancellation of family visits, transfers. And many comrades are beaten during each invasion of these repressive units. This is not to mention the “bosta” and all the suffering of our female comrades, especially during transfers…

Following this situation, our comrades announced the launch of a collective hunger strike in Israeli jails. Key leaders of the prisoners’ movement and the national liberation movement as a whole joined the strike, and hundreds planned to join the strike in the coming days. It was expected that the strike would escalate just today, 17 April, in Palestine and internationally, on Palestinian prisoners’ day. However, the Zionist authorities found it useful to back down for the moment in face of the growing movement and its potential, especially in light of the latest developments in the Arab wold, namely the promising movements in Algeria and Sudan. As you see comrades, the revolutionary strugglers, often in particularly difficult circumstances, seek by all means to defeat the policies of destruction they are subjected to in the enemy’s jails. However, the outcome of this confrontation, the outcome of these hard battles, is always a function of the solidarity of the masses and the unwavering commitment of the vanguard in the field of ongoing struggle.

In 1974, the Palestinian National Conference declared 17 April to be Palestinian Prisoners’ Day. This was not only meant to denounce on this occasion the barbarism of the Zionist occupier nor was it only intended to honor the captive resistance by reminding the masses of their sacrifices and their unwavering willingness to stand up against the Zionist military forces. The commemoration of this Palestinian Prisoners’ Day is intended, above all else, to affirm loudly and strongly the determination to tear our comrades from the claws of their criminal jailers. Indeed, on several occasions, the vanguards of the Palestinian revolutionary struggle took on this task with great courage and self-sacrifice, forcing the enemy to release thousands of imprisoned comrades without any concessions on their part.

Today, comrades, here we are gathered again, in different countries of the world, to commemorate Palestinian Prisoners’ Day and especially to express our unwavering solidarity with the resistance in the Zionist jails and our complete confidence in the determination of the Palestinian revolutionary vanguards and their firm resolve to do what is necessary to tear our resisting comrades from the clutches of the Zionist criminal jailers.

May a thousand solidarity initiatives blossom in support of our flowers and cubs imprisoned in the Zionist prisons!

May a thousand solidarity initiatives blossom in favor of the strugglers of the right of return initiatives!

Solidarity, all solidarity with the resistance in Zionist jails and isolation cells in Morocco, Turkey, the Philippines and everywhere around the world!

Solidarity, all solidarity with the resisting revolutionary comrades in the jails in Greece!

May a thousand solidarity initiatives blossom in support of the Algerian, Sudanese and Yemeni masses!

Solidarity, all solidarity, with the young proletarians of the working-class neighborhoods!

Capitalism is nothing but barbarism. Honor to all those who oppose it in the diversity of their expressions!

Together, comrades, and only together, we will win!

To all of you, comrades and friends, my warmest revolutionary greetings.

Your comrade, Georges Abdallah.

(Source / 20.04.2019) 

IOF Quells Weekly March Of Kafr Qaddum

Six Palestinian citizens, including journalists, suffered bullet injuries on Friday when the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) attacked participants in the weekly anti-settlements march of Kafr Qaddum, east of Qalqilya.

According to WAFA news agency, two journalists were among the wounded Palestinians.

Morad Shetewi, coordinator of the popular resistance in the town, said Israeli soldiers fired live and rubber bullets and teargas canisters towards the protesters, injuring photojournalist Ayman Nubani of WAFA Agency and Nedal Shtayyeh of Xinhua Agency.

The soldiers also assaulted and arrested a French solidarity activist during the protest.

Several other protesters suffered from their exposure to tear gas fumes.

Almost every Friday, Palestinians and foreign activists stage a weekly march in the town of Kafr Qaddum to protest Israel’s closure of the village’s main street and settlement activities.

The Israeli occupation army blocked off the road after expanding the illegal Israeli settlement of Kedumim in 2003, forcing village residents to take a bypass road in order to travel to Nablus, which has extended the travel time to Nablus from 15 minutes to 40 minutes, according to Israeli rights group B’Tselem.

(Source / 20.04.2019) 

National Committee: Israel Should Implement Understandings Over Gaza

The National Committee for the March of Return and Breaking the Siege has warned the Israeli occupation state of procrastinating over implementing the Egyptian-brokered truce understandings with the Palestinian side in the Gaza Strip.

In a statement on Friday, the National Committee sent a warning to the Israelis regarding the recent understandings about Gaza, stressing the need for the Israeli side to honor what was agreed upon with the Egyptian mediators.

Gaza has only seen partial solutions until now and the goals of the March of Return have not been achieved, according to its statements.

It urged the citizens in Gaza to continue to participate actively in the peaceful March of Return rallies to be staged next Friday.

(Source / 20.04.2019)