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Two Palestinians wounded by Israeli gunfire in Nablus, Ramallah

2 Pal's injured and 10y old child

Two Palestinians, including a 10-year-old child, were shot and injured on Thursday evening as clashes broke out in Nablus and Ramallah.

The PIC reporter quoted eyewitnesses as affirming that violent clashes erupted in Beit Furik town, east of Nablus, when Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) stormed the area amid heavy firing of teargas bombs and rubber bullets.

A young man suffered light injuries after being shot with a rubber bullet during the clashes, the sources added.

Meanwhile, the child Salah Tamimi, 10, was injured after being hit by a teargas canister in his head in Deir Nidham town to the south of Ramallah.

The child was wounded during the confrontations that erupted in the town between IOF soldiers and local youths.

(Source / 22.02.2018)

Municipal services in Gaza reduced by 50%

Members of the Health Work stage a demonstration to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis in Gaza on 15 February 2018

Palestinian municipalities in the Gaza Strip yesterday announced the halving of their services as a result of the energy and funding crisis in the besieged Strip, Quds Press reported.

In a statement, the head of the Municipality of Gaza City Nizar Hijazi said the “increasing humanitarian and environmental crisis pushed us to reduce our basic services by 50 per cent.”

The municipalities across the Gaza Strip are unable to afford the minimum range of services for residents.

Meanwhile, he said that the municipalities closed large swathes of the beach “due to the contamination caused by pouring untreated sewage directly in to the sea as most of the treatment plants stopped working due to the lack of fuel and electricity.”

Head of Rafah Municipality, Sobhi Ridwan, said: “The donors who used to pay for the fuel stopped their payment since the start of this year.”

Read: 500 surgeries in Gaza hospitals postponed after hygiene services stopped

According to Ridwan, “the donations sent to the municipalities were used to buy fuel for the clean water pumps, sewage treatment plants and trucks and lorries which collect garbage from the streets.”

There is a very clear retreat in the income of the municipalities due to the inability of Gaza residents to pay the monthly costs of services due to the deteriorating situation in the besieged enclave.

Due to the financial crisis hitting them, over the last months Gaza municipalities have reduced payments to staff by 30 per cent.

Gaza has been under strict Israeli siege since mid-2007 and it was subjected to three major Israeli offensives during that period, heavily destroying its infrastructure.

(Source / 22.02.2018)

Dahlan denies plan to head new Palestinian government

Palestinian MP Mohamed Dahlan [File photo]

Palestinian MP Mohamed Dahlan [File photo]

Palestinian MP Mohamed Dahlan denied yesterday reports claiming he plans to form and head a new Palestinian government, calling these reports the “production of security cooperation” between the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Israel, a statement said.

In the statement, which was sent to mass media, Dahlan, who was dismissed by PA and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas from Fatah in 2011, said that “these reports are not more than lies spread by the PA aimed to deviate the eyes from the suffering of the Palestinians and I will not comment on them”.

He also said that “these lies are signs of the disability of the PA political leadership, which suffers major crises [because of] the acts and behaviour of those practicing oppression against the Palestinians and depleting their resources”.

In addition he said: “I have repeatedly announced my positions regarding all the national issues, including those related to ruling and administration. I have dedicated all my abilities, as a Palestinian soldier, to work on getting the Palestinians out of the ongoing crises.”

Read: Senior Fatah official criticises Egypt for ‘adoption’ of Dahlan

Dahlan noted that the latest of his positions was praising the decisions of the PLO’s Central Council, which, he said, would never be implemented on the ground.pale

The PLO’s Central Council has recently taken several decisions, including fully halting security cooperation with Israel.

The former leader of the PA protective apparatus in Gaza, one of the most notorious PA security agencies that tortured many Palestinians between 1994 and 2000, said that the “tragic reality of the Palestinians could not be treated by efforts of one person or even one faction”.

He added: “The only exit from the current situation is to form a national salvation leadership that includes all parties without any exceptions. There, I will be a soldier, not looking for a position in order to help the Palestinians.”

(Source / 21.02.2018)

Palestinian activist injured in settler attack in Nablus

Zakaria al-Sadda injured

A Palestinian activist was injured on Tuesday morning after his vehicle was targeted with stones by Israeli settlers near the entrance to Beita town south of Nablus city.

Eyewitnesses told the PIC reporter that dozens of settlers rallied near the settlement outpost Avitar, which is being removed by the Israeli forces, and attacked the Palestinian citizens moving on a nearby road.

They said that the anti-settlement activist Zakaria al-Sadda was slightly injured in the face after Israeli settlers threw stones at his car smashing its windshield.

A Palestinian ambulance rushed to the scene to provide first aid to al-Sadda, according to the witnesses.

The Israeli occupation forces in the early morning hours started to remove a newly-established settlement outpost in Jabal Sbeih area in Beita following a wave of anger and protest in the town.

(Source / 20.02.2018)

Erekat: Lieberman is the real president of Palestine

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman [Avigdor Liberman/Facebook]

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman

Senior Palestinian Liberation Organisation official Saeb Erekat has expressed pessimism as to the likelihood of a two-state solution and the negotiation efforts of the Palestinian Authority (PA), according to the Arab news agency Assabeel.

“I think that the real president of the Palestinian people is the [Israeli] Defence Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, and the Palestinian prime minister is the coordinator [of Government Affairs in the Occupied Territories], Poly Mordechai,” Erekat said in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2.

“Abu Mazen [PA President Mahmoud Abbas] cannot move from Ramallah without permission from Mordechai and Lieberman.”

Erekat was similarly doubtful at the proposed two-state solution as the answer to the conflict stating: “The Palestinian street began to refuse this idea because it sees it as unrealistic in light of the growing settlements.”

Erekat, 62, has served as chief negotiator since 1996, having acted as a Palestinian delegate in numerous international conferences including the landmark Oslo Accords of 1993.

Erekat: US under Trump has lost role as Mideast mediator

The PA has come under heavy criticism in recent months over its detention of critics of its policies and its continued security coordination with Israeli forces.

Despite having initially stated that the PA had cut all contact with the US following President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, last week a senior PA official clarified that communication was ongoing, although political dialogue had been scaled back.

Earlier this month, it was also revealed that the PA had collaborated with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to spy on other Palestinian figures who were opponents and rivals of Abbas.

The document alleges that three Palestinian security personnel formed an electronic surveillance unit in mid-2014 and monitored the phone calls of thousands of Palestinians, senior figures in the Palestinian factions and even judges, lawyers, civil society leaders and politicians.

A survey last year found that some 67 per cent of Palestinians want Abbas to resign, with nearly two-thirds believing that the proposed two-state solution was no longer feasible because of Israel’s continued settlement expansion.

Read: PLO prepares to boycott US goods over Jerusalem decision

More Palestinians seek Abbas’ resignation.

Read more: http://ow.ly/eFWm30hohtN


(Source / 20.02.2018)

Gaza: We have not received a penny from PA since reconciliation

Palestinian children seen at a UNRWA school during a visit by Pierre Krähenbühl, commissioner-general of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to Gaza on Janaury 22, 2018 [Middle East Monitor / Mohammad Asad]

Palestinian children seen at a UNRWA school during a visit by Pierre Krähenbühl, commissioner-general of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to Gaza on Janaury 22, 2018

Gaza’s Ministry of Education said yesterday that it has not received any funds from the Palestinian Authority (PA) government since the signing of the reconciliation agreementbetween Fatah and Hamas in October last year.

Undersecretary of the Ministry Ziad Thabet said that the PA government has not paid a single penny to the Ministry of Education in Gaza since then.

In statements to Quds Press Thabet denied allegations by the PA Minister of Education and Higher Education Sabri Saidam that $27 million had been paid to the ministry’s employees in Gaza after being collected from students and school canteens.

Thabet pointed out that Gaza’s Ministry of Finance is only able to pay a small part of the Ministry of Education’s financial allocations which is never enough. He continued to say that this negatively affects the educational process.

The Palestinian official asked the Ramallah-based PA government to secure the necessary operational budget for Gaza’s Ministry of Education so that it can perform its tasks to the fullest extent possible.

Gaza ministries suspended work for several hours yesterday in protest at the PA government’s failure to assume its responsibilities toward the Palestinian people in Gaza.

(Source / 20.02.2018)

Gaza: 125,000 homes required to overcome housing crisis

The Minister of Public Works and Housing in Gaza, Mufid al-Hasayneh said that the Gaza Strip needs about 125,000 new housing units to overcome the housing crisis in the strip, adding that about 24,000 other homes are in need of being rebuilt.

In a press statement on Monday, Al-Hasayneh said  that more than 70% of the families in Gaza are financially unable to build housing units, noting that the average of new housing units required in the strip was only 14,000.

The minister added that the number of housing units built in the Gaza Strip since 1994 hit 130,000  units, while the number of existing housing units is 285,000,   55,000 of which need to be restored or rehabilitated.

Al-Hasayneh stressed that the last Israeli war on Gaza in 2014 significantly worsened the crisis sine it caused severe damage to the houses,  where 200,000 homes were destroyed or partially damaged.

He pointed out that 20% of the Palestinian families in the Gaza Strip live in overcrowded residential units with high population density, while the population growth rate in the sector is 3.3%.

(Source / 19.02.2018)

Shin Bet arrests Palestinian cell plotting to assassinate Lieberman

Plot Lieberman

Israel’s Shin Bet security agency on Sunday announced that it has recently arrested an Islamic Jihad cell composed of six Palestinians from Bethlehem and claimed that they were plotting to assassinate the Israeli war minister Avigdor Lieberman.

According to a statement released by the agency, the six Palestinians were planning to place a bomb on a West Bank road near Gush Etzion settlement on which Lieberman’s convoy was to travel.

The statement noted that the cell had planned to carry out other operations without giving details. No response from the Islamic Jihad Movement has been issued yet to the Shin Bet accusation.

The Shin Bet also claimed foiling a plot by another Islamic Jihad armed cell operating in Bethlehem to launch shooting attacks against Israeli soldiers and settlers.

Lieberman was the target of a similar plot in 2014 when a Hamas cell planned to hit the vehicle in which he was traveling with an RPG.

The Shin Bet said that the Islamic Jihad cell members were aware of past failed attempts to kill Lieberman and therefore believed that if they planted an explosive device on the Israeli minister’s travel route they would be more successful.

Based on the Shin Bet allegations, the cell’s location had been identified and its plan thwarted at a very early stage of its work.

(Source / 18.02.2018)

3 Palestinians arrested by PA forces, others kept in custody

Palestinians arrested by PA

The Palestinian Authority (PA) forces arrested a number of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and have kept others in custody.

Palestinian young man Youssef Shedid was arrested by the PA forces in a campaign targeting Tulkarem’s town of Allar.

The PA intelligence officers also arrested the Palestinian ex-prisoner Anas Ka’kour in Jenin and the ex-prisoner Mohamed Abu Aliya in Bethlehem, after they broke into his family’s home.

At the same time, two Palestinian university students—Alaa Abu Aram and Abada Mer’i—have been held in PA lock-ups in al-Khalil respectively for five and four days running.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian ex-prisoners Kasem Swei, Maysara Afana, Saleh Daoud, Luay Freij, Ibrahim Zeid, and Saleh Abu Saleh have been on a hunger strike to protest their arbitrary detention by the PA Preventive Forces in Qalqilya for over four months despite a court rule ordering their release.

(Source / 18.02.2018)

Palestinian kidnapped by IOF soldiers over alleged knife possession

Youth kidnapped Jenin

The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) at noontime Sunday kidnapped a Palestinian young man near the Salem military court, west of Jenin, on claims that he had a knife in his possession.

According to local sources, Israeli soldiers cordoned off the Salem military camp and cracked down on Palestinians before they kidnapped a young man at a checkpoint set at the camp’s outer entrance.

Hebrew-speaking radio stations said Israeli forces arrested a young man from Nablus after a Carlo gun was spotted in his bag at the main entrance to Salem court.

(Source / 18.02.2018)