‘Israëlische zeeblokkade Gaza legaal’

Israël heeft te kampen met een reële bedreiging van de kant van militante groeperingen in de Gazastrook. De zeeblokkade die de Joodse staat aan het gebied oplegt om wapenleveranties te voorkomen, is dan ook niet in strijd met het volkenrecht.

Dit is de conclusie van een VN-commissie die het incident met het Turkse schip Mavi Marmara in mei 2010 onderzocht. Israëlische militairen doodden toen negen Turken. Het rapport is gelekt aan The New York Times, die er vandaag uit citeert.

Het rapport is al maanden klaar, maar niet gepubliceerd om de betrekkingen tussen Israël en Turkije niet verder te schaden. Ankara is niet blij met de conclusies van het rapport.

De commissie onder leiding van de voormalige Nieuw-Zeelandse premier Geoffrey Palmer concludeert wel dat Israël ‘buitensporig en onredelijk’ geweld heeft gebruikt bij het incident. Het rapport stelt dan ook dat Israël excuses zou moeten aanbieden en een schadevergoeding zou moeten betalen.

(www.parool.nl / 01.09.2011)

UN report into flotilla attack exposes Israeli lies and criminality

(Dr. Hanan Chehata    Wednesday, 29 September 2010)

UN report into flotilla attack exposes Israeli lies and criminality

Introduction

Israel has been condemned, yet again, by the United Nations for serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws. A UN report released last week has confirmed that there is “clear evidence to support prosecutions” against the Israeli authorities for the crimes of “wilful killing; torture or inhumane treatment; and wilfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health.” These are just some of the damning conclusions reached by the United Nations Human Rights Council report which investigated the circumstances of the Israeli attack on the Freedom Flotilla to Gaza in which nine of the humanitarians on board the Mavi Marmara were killed, dozens were injured, and hundreds of the civilian passengers were abused, detained illegally and transferred to Israel by Israeli commandos. This report has been awaited anxiously by many who have been seeking clarification of the events that took place on 31st May this year.

The conclusion of the report has vindicated all the international humanitarians on board the ships while condemning Israel’s behaviour in the strongest possible terms. “The conduct of the Israeli military… towards the flotilla passengers was not only disproportionate to the occasion but demonstrated levels of totally unnecessary and incredible violence. It betrayed an unacceptable level of brutality. Such conduct cannot be justified or condoned on security or any other grounds. It constituted grave violations of human rights law and international humanitarian law.” (Emphases added) 


The starting point of the UN report – is the siege on Gaza legal or illegal?

The report begins by posing some very simple questions to put the issue into context. First, is the siege on Gaza legal or illegal? Second, was the Israeli assault on the flotilla legal or illegal?

With regards to the first question, the report confirms yet again that the siege on Gaza is entirely illegal: “The Mission has come to the firm conclusion that a humanitarian crisis existed on the 31 May 2010 in Gaza. The preponderance of evidence from impeccable sources is far too overwhelming to come to a contrary opinion. Any denial that this is so cannot be supported on any rational grounds… the blockade is unlawful and cannot be sustained in law.”
You cannot get much clearer than that! The UN team bolsters this position by reference to the blockade amounting to “collective punishment”, a serious crime under the Fourth Geneva Convention. The resultant attack on the Turkish-registered Mavi Marmara, the report concludes, was also “clearly unlawful”.


Israeli lies exposed

Not only does the report make it clear that Israel acted illegally and in violation of international law but it also reveals clearly that many of Israel’s claims are actually unabashed lies and blatant attempts to mislead the public and cover up its own crimes. For example:

1- Israeli claim: The flotilla members had weapons on board and were therefore a threat to Israeli soldiers.

UN Report: “The Mission has found no evidence to suggest that any of the passengers used firearms or that any firearms were taken on board the ship… Further, the Mission finds the Israeli accounts so inconsistent and contradictory with regard to evidence of alleged firearms injuries to Israeli soldiers that it has to reject it.” (116)

2- Israeli claim: Lethal force was necessary to protect the lives of the Israeli soldiers.

UN Report: “None of the four passengers who were killed [during a particular phase of the assault], including a photographer who at the time of being shot was engaged in taking photographs and was shot by an Israeli soldier positioned on the top deck above, posed any threat to the Israeli forces.” (120) Furthermore, the report finds that “there was no imminent threat to soldiers”. (167) Nine people had been killed by the Israeli commandos by the end of the attack.

In contrast, those on board the boat gave medical assistance to three Israeli soldiers who were injured and then those soldiers were also released.


Examples of UN-documented Israeli brutality against the humanitarians on board

The report highlights a few very troubling acts that were perpetrated by the Israeli forces against the civilian flotilla members including inter alia:

  • “Widespread misuse of the handcuffs by the Israeli soldiers… Forensic reports confirm that at least fifty-four passengers had received injuries, transversal abrasions and bruises, as a result of handcuffing on board the Mavi Marmara.” This included the cuffing of seriously wounded passengers for hours. Three months later many people still have related medical complaints.
  • Many civilians were stripped naked and forced to wait hours before receiving medical treatment.
  • Medical treatment was denied for hours to some of the wounded.
  • Many passengers “exposed on open decks received serious sun-burn to their skin as a result of many hours exposure: medical reports show that at least thirteen passengers received first degree burns as a consequence.”
  • “There was physical abuse of passengers by the Israeli forces, including kicking and punching and being hit with the butts of rifles.”
  • Frequent instances of verbal abuse, including derogatory sexual remarks about the female passengers.
  • “Passengers were denied access to toilet facilities or made to wait for lengthy periods before being escorted to the toilet and then forced to use the toilet with Israeli soldiers watching and while handcuffed. Some passengers were in serious discomfort as a result, while others used makeshift receptacles, such as plastic bottles and others still were forced to urinate on themselves.”
  • Some passengers received dog bite wounds.
  • Some passengers who suffer from chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes or heart conditions were not allowed to take their medication.
  • A white flag was waved by the Head of the IHH (the Turkish charity which helped to organise the flotilla) and yet the Israelis continued to fire.

Fallout from the flotilla attack

Prosecutions

This UN report has laid the groundwork for a series of prosecutions against the Israeli authorities. In fact, the report specifically outlines some of the potential legal remedies that the victims are now at liberty to seek, including: “judicial remedies”; the “right to reparations”; “medical and psychological care” (for those victims of Israeli torture); “compensation”; and so on. The report states further that “as far as the grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention are concerned, these may give rise to individual criminal responsibility”. It also lists a few of Israel’s most serious violations, including, for example, the violation of the “right to life” and “torture and other cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment”.

Prosecutions can be brought by individuals, families, the flag-bearing nation of the boats involved or the countries from whence the victims came, primarily Turkey (although one of the deceased, 19 year old Furkan Dogan, held Turkish-American dual citizenship).

One point the UN mission notes is that the Israeli authorities have refused, once again, to cooperate with a UN fact-finding mission (reminiscent of their refusal to cooperate with the Goldstone report team). However, given that some of the Israeli “perpetrators of the more serious crimes” were masked, the UN has urged Israel’s government to “assist in their identification with a view to prosecuting the culpable.”

Turkey’s relations with Israel

This report will also have a great bearing on Turkey’s already shaky relationship with Israel. The Turkish authorities are not going to let the murder of their citizens on the high seas by Israeli soldiers pass unnoticed. In an interview published on 28th September 2010 in the London-based Al Hayat newspaper, Turkey’s Foreign Minister, Ahmad Dawud Oglu, said, “We will never forget that our citizens were killed by the army of a foreign country. This is a matter of principle for us; it is not a transitional or tactical issue. We demand an official apology because the incident is regarded as a crime.”

This UN report will only bolster the Turkish sense of injustice. It confirms the many levels on which the incident breached international law and clearly paves the way for legal proceedings to follow. Turkey has essentially been vindicated by this report and it gives validity and support to the claims made by the Turkish passengers and Turkish authorities all along.

The Israelis need to do something substantial if they are to appease their erstwhile ally. As things stand at the moment all military cooperation between the two nations has essentially been suspended and political relations generally have become more or less frozen, with no significant efforts being made by any third party to mediate between the two countries. This situation is likely to get even worse over the coming months as legal battles begin to be waged. The battle is being taken from the high seas to the courtroom and this will no doubt be another PR disaster for Israel.

More bad PR for Israel

This report is a damning indictment of Israel’s behaviour, casting as it does a very bad light on the Israeli government and armed forces. It also seriously calls into question the effectiveness of the Israel Defence Forces. The IDF is touted around the world as a stellar fighting force and yet its commandos could not do something as relatively simple as divert a boat load of civilians without it leading to absolute carnage. Either this exposes the IDF as an army of poorly trained, unprofessional youngsters with high velocity weapons; or, if they stand beside their reputation as a fearless fighting force, that they display callous inhumanity when pitted against civilians and have little regard for human life. This calls into question the way that the troops are trained as well as the military philosophy passed down by senior officers to their troops.

Conclusion

The authors of the UN report stated that “the mission is satisfied not only that the flotilla presented no imminent threat [to Israel] but that the interception was motivated by concerns about the possible propaganda victory that might be claimed by the organisers of the flotilla.” If the Israelis intended to avoid a propaganda defeat, their plan certainly backfired and, once again, Israel’s criminal antics have been laid bare for the world to see. Now the Zionist state faces an even bigger PR disaster when the inevitable prosecutions reach the courts and the details of the events that unfolded on board the Mavi Marmara and in the days immediately thereafter are given in open court.

More flotillas are planned in the wake of this attack. A British boat, the Irene, carrying Jewish peace activists, has already been intercepted by Israeli forces en-route to Gaza. An even larger “Freedom Flotilla 2” is also due to set sail in the next few months. Israel should learn its lessons from its disastrous experience. The world will not give up on the besieged people of Gaza. If governments are afraid of the political ramifications that come from challenging Israel and its allies then the citizens of the world will step forward and do it instead.

The attack on the Mavi Marmara was the beginning and not the end. This latest UN report clearly exonerates the flotilla mission both in its principles and in its practice, bolstering future efforts by peace activists to break the siege on Gaza. It also sends a warning to Israel that its illegal siege on the 1.5 million inhabitants of Gaza will not be allowed to continue unchallenged. The new leader of the Labour Party, Ed Miliband, whose parents fled from Nazi Europe during the Second World War, has told his party’s annual conference that “the attack on the Gaza Flotilla was so wrong… the Gaza blockade must be lifted and we must strain every sinew to work to make that happen”. The UN report itself ends by saying that the “unsustainable” siege on Gaza “is totally intolerable and unacceptable in the 21st century”, a fact that it would be wise for Israel to wake up to sooner rather than later.

(www.middleeastmonitor.org.uk / 01.09.2011)

The Islamic Roots of Democratic Rebellion and Liberty

“There is no god but Allah, and Gaddafi is his enemy!” So reads one of the popular mottos used by the Libyan rebels, who just put an end to Muammar Gaddafi’s 42-year-long tyranny after a chaotic civil war. Similarly, most rebel fighters who captured Tripoli this week were chanting, “Allahu Akbar!,” which means, “God is the greatest!” (“Allah” in Arabic simply means “God.”)

Ironically, though, the now-dethroned Libyan colonel, too, had long been referring to God to justify his dictatorial rule. A mantra of his regime bluntly read: “Allah, Muammar, Libya — that’s all we need!”

The image of Allah, in other words, seems to have shifted in the minds of many Libyans from a pillar of authoritarian rule to a beacon of liberty.

A similar transformation seems to be ongoing in Syria as well, which used to have its own version of the authoritarian Arab trinity: “Allah, Syria, Bashar — that’s all we need!” But the peaceful Syrian protestors who have been raising their voice against the dictatorship of Bashar Assad and co., despite all the killing and torture they face, are now using a different motto: “Allah, Syria, Freedom — that’s all we need!”

It is perfectly understandable that such religious themes within the Arab Spring comes as confusing, if not worrying, to the Islamo-sceptic Westerners (and even some Arab secular liberals) who assume that all political manifestations of Islam will lead to tyranny. Moreover, they have in their mind the unpleasant case of the Iranian Revolution, which, after a brief “spring” in 1979, replaced the secular dictatorship of the Shah not with liberal democracy, but Islamic theocracy.

However, the history of the Muslim civilization shows that Islam has been understood in many different ways, and while it sometimes has been used to support tyrants, it more often than not challenged them. In fact, one of the very early theological splits in Islam was precisely on this issue. The successive caliphs of the Umayyad Dynasty (661-750 AD) promoted a theory of divine predestination, which implied that the corrupt Umayyad rule was predestined, and thus willed by God. The opposing theologians, who defended humans’ freewill, argued that rulers were responsible to both God and the people.

After a few centuries of debate, the Sunni view on this matter settled on a middle position, which valued strong rulers, but also expected them to be just and lawful. In other words, as historian Bernard Lewis notes, “Islamic tradition strongly disapprove[d] of arbitrary rule.” In the Ottoman Empire, the ritualistic expression of this idea was a popular slogan that common people would say to the sultans after Friday prayers: “Don’t be arrogant my sultan, God is greater than thou!”

In the modern age, however, traditional Islamic law, whose functions included constraining arbitrary power, failed to update itself, and was gradually rendered ineffective via “modernization.” As Noah Feldman illustrated brilliantly, this process produced not the liberal democracy of the West, but various secular (and sometimes fiercely secularist) autocrats — such as the Atatürk of Turkey, Reza Shah of Iran, or the Nasser of Egypt.

Islamism, the totalitarian ideology that aspires for an “Islamic state,” was more of a reaction to this modern crisis, rather than a direct continuation of the Islamic tradition. It was also based on an export of the worst ideas of the West. One of the founders of the Islamist ideology, Pakistani thinker Sayyid Abu al-A’la al-Mawdudi, had openly acknowledged that his “Islamic state” would “bear a kind of resemblance to the Fascist and Communist states,” in the way it would dominate the whole society.

Now, here is the key question for today: If Mawdudi and his followers synthesized Islam with totalitarianism, can others synthesize it with liberal democracy?

The answer does not look as grim as some suspect, as I argue in more detail in my new book, Islam without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty. Not only the symbolic combination of “Allah” and “freedom” in the minds of the Arab masses, but also the ongoing discussions within more moderate Islamic parties show positive signs. Turkey’s incumbent Justice and Development Party also seems to play an indirect role, by showing that pious Muslims can well be a part of the democratic game and gain from it. As covered in this very interesting report, at least the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood of Syria seems to have taken important lessons from the Turkish case, and got transformed from a militant and oppressive group to a moderate and relatively liberal one.

To be sure, a probable transformation of the Muslim mind from authoritarianism to liberalism would be a very challenging process, which would face many obstacles. But was the political evolution of Christianity any easier? It certainly took a lot effort to move from the Spanish Inquisition and the “divine right of kings” to the liberating motto of Benjamin Franklin: “Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.” Islam, I believe, is just no less capable of going the same distance.

(www.huffingtonpost.com / Mustafa Akyol / 01.09.2011)

Sarkozy: 15 miljard voor nieuw Libië

De ‘Vrienden van Libië’, de landen die deelnemen aan de Libië-top in Parijs, zijn op die conferentie overeengekomen de bevroren tegoeden van Libië weer vrij te geven. Er wordt meteen 15 miljard dollar beschikbaar gesteld aan de nieuwe machthebbers.

Dat heeft de Franse president Nicolas Sarkozy gezegd. Hij riep het nieuwe bewind tevens op te streven naar ‘verzoening’ in het Noord-Afrikaanse land. Sarkozy zei tevens dat het aan Libië is om te beslissen waar Kaddafi berecht wordt, als de verdreven dictator wordt opgepakt.

Het Internationaal Strafhof (ICC) in Den Haag heeft een arrestatiebevel uitgevaardigd tegen Kaddafi en twee andere kopstukken van zijn bewind. Een ICC-zaak is echter alleen ontvankelijk als het betrokken land zelf niet tot strafvervolging kan of wil overgaan.

Volgens Sarkozy heeft de NAVO-interventie in Libië tienduizenden mensenlevens gered. NAVO-baas Rasmussen zei in Parijs dat de operatie doorgaat zolang er burgers in gevaar zijn in het Noord-Afrikaanse land.

(www.parool.nl / 01.08.2011)

AL-KHALIL (HEBRON): Six children detained by Israeli soldiers during first day of Eid al-Fitr

At 4:00 p.m. on 30 August 2011, Israeli soldiers detained six boys, ages five to nine, in Hebron’s Old City under the suspicion of intending to harm thesoldiers with their toy guns.  The soldiers brought the children to the military compound at Bab il Baladiyye by the entrance of the old city.

Members of Christian Peacemaker Teams observed as the soldiers detained the children for forty minutes before releasing them.  At one point the soldiers brought them into the compound to have their toy guns examined by military police officers.  This investigation took place just a couple of hours after the soldiers entered the souq (Old City market area) and held several groups of young boys based on the same suspicion.

August 30 was the first day of the Muslim feast of Eid al-Fitr, which celebrates the end of the month of Ramadan.  The Eid is a time for charity, exchanging gifts, and visiting family and relatives.  The detention of the children had the same impact on them and their families as military or police detention of children playing with their toys on Christmas would have had on Christian families.

(cpt.org / 01.09.2011)

Take a Stand: Join a September Action, or Organize One in Your City

This fall, will Palestine become the newest member of the United Nations? As the opening of the UN General Assembly draws near, this question looms above the rest.

The answer may depend on the position of our government. If the United States uses its veto in the Security Council as promised, then Palestine’s full membership in the UN will be difficult, if not impossible, to achieve. In that case, the General Assembly may admit Palestine as a “non-member state,” a status held by the Vatican.

Palestine’s bid for UN membership has engendered many opposing reactions, with some believing that it could advance the cause of Palestinian human rights, while others think it could set it back.  Get a variety of political perspectives from our website.

Whether you support or oppose this initiative, or are neutral toward it (the US Campaign takes no position–read more in our FAQ), there are a few things that we can all agree to:

Palestinians are entitled to all of their individual and national rights, including self-determination, freedom, justice and equality.

The biggest obstacle to Palestinians attaining these rights is U.S. diplomatic and military support for Israeli occupation and apartheid policies toward Palestinians (whether living under military occupation, as Israeli citizens, or as refugees denied their right of return to their homes).

The United States should not use its veto at the UN to shield Israel from accountability for its illegal policies and actions, nor should the United States sanction Palestinians for pursuing their long-denied rights.

Last month, we delivered to the State Department an open letter signed by more than 125 groups, including 30 national organizations, and petitions signed by more than 25,000 people urging the Obama Administration not to veto Palestine UN membership if the issue arises in the Security Council. National organizations CODEPINK, Grassroots International, Jewish Voice for Peace, and Just Foreign Policy contributed petition signatures to the overall count.

Yet the State Department refused to discuss its position with us, ignoring our concerns. (Learn more about the Obama Administration’s position in this essay by our National Advocacy Director Josh Ruebner.) That’s why we must organize to exert more pressure and to make our voices heard more loudly.

Take to the street this month like many of our member organizations and individual activists are doing to protest U.S. diplomatic and military support of Israel.

On September 10, the North Texas Boycott, Divest, and Sanction of Israel Campaign will rally in Fort Worth to protest the potential U.S. veto in the Security Council.

On September 15, a coalition of dozens of New York-based organizations, many of which are members of the US Campaign, will hold a rally and march at the UN in support of Palestinian self-determination.

Also on that day, which coincides with the International Day of Democracy, activists around the country are planning demonstrations opposing U.S military aid to Israel and U.S. interference with the UN membership bid. So far, events are planned for Phoenix, AZ, San Francisco, CA, Washington, DC, Urbana, IL, Omaha, NE, Pittsburgh, PA, and Austin, TX.

On September 16, several organizations are planning a demonstration at the federal building in Los Angeles to protest the threatened U.S. veto.

Wherever you are, take action this month to protest U.S. support for Israel’s denial of Palestinian human rights. During your action, you can educate and organize people in your community to end U.S. military aid to Israel by signing up for a packet with fliers, postcards, stickers, and more.

(US Campaign to END the Israeli occupation / Newsletter / 01.09.2011)

” Christian Terrorism : Round the clock Around the globe “

‘Christian Terrorism’ the word is not so familiar to us but not for that it’s come into view suddenly. Rather it’s for that media machine didn’t ever coverage or focus on it distinctly. Here I would like to say we (muslim) never want to humiliate any kind of religion. Because Allah says in Quran: O believers, do not insult those, whom these pagans call upon besides Allah, lest in retaliation they call bad names to Allah out of their ignorance. [Al-An’am, 6:108]]

But today media, biased attitude and double-standard intention of West’s bigwig have been obliged us to think about and to talk about like this way. Various occurrences create hatred, dread and sometimes it is reflected by terrorism. History and current series of events prove it.

The United Nations, the European Union, NATO, and governments around the world always condemn all terrorism but they don’t follow their proclaimed speeches. Now we see that willingly not to invent real truth or fact all commonwealth and social administrators  attempt to establish a former fixed conception which is always Islam malicious.

Matthew Goodwin, a lecturer at the University of Nottingham in England and an expert on far-right groups, agreed that the excess focus on Islamist extremism had let other extremists go neglected. For example, last horrible attack in Norway. At first media emphasized that it might have been an act of revenge for Norway’s participation in the campaigns in Afghanistan and Libya! Some said, Norwegian resident any ‘extremist’ muslim or group behind it, might be Al-Qaueda also !

Through this all rootless suspicion there’s been circulated many rumours-extension of hatred about muslim. Such kind of misconceptions would be more extent if Anders Breivik (a member of the revided Knights Templar) died or didn’t surrender to police with haughty confession. No doubt, far-right groups and Neo-Nazi’s activities are increasing day by day in Europe and Scandinavia.

Here I can mention (please kindly for detail see the added below photo with article) about so many groups, terrorist and events of terrorism as 2002 Soweto bombings, Unabomber and Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh in 1995. David Copeland set off three nail bombs in London:1999 17 April, 24 April, 30 April, Convicted of murder on 30 June 2000, another one is Werner Koenigshofer, KKK (Ku Klux Klan) organization, Knights Party in USA, The National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT), a rebel group operating in Tripura, North-East India(one of the ten most active terrorist groups in the world).

There are more evidences and christian, jews or catholic right-wing groups around the world who are terrorising people most and they are more dangerous than media’s so-called ‘muslim terrorist’. Now the man is Anders Breivik who stated that it was needed of many killing and destructions in Norway. And laid out a road map for his future organisation, the Justiciar Knights, to wage a campaign that will graduate from acts of terrorism to a global war involving weapons of mass destruction – aimed at bringing down what he calls the “cultural Marxist” order. He said that there were many others like him all over Europe.This open announcement is a great ‘alarming’ to all kind of people. In his manifesto he also urges the Hindus to drive Muslims out of India. He demands the gradual deportation of all Muslims from Europe from 2011 to 2083. But we saw that they were all jews and christians who died in Utoya Island !

And the most surprising  matter is_ for this contemptible crime Breivik will be highly punished only by 21 years jail, not death by hanging or electric chair! Now we would like to ask_ Why United Nations, NATO or America are not meddling in it, why are not taking action against this great terrorist and why not taking him in international judiciary court when only to be suspect you were all sentenced Bin Laden to death and dumped his body in the Atlantic? Why don’t you ban all right-wing groups ‘Norwegian Progress Party’, ‘Dutch Freedom Party’, ‘Danish People’s Party’, ‘EDL’ (English Defense League)…..?

So in this all perspective now we should blame Christianity or we should hate all Christians in this world? I believe for all sane people, the answer is a resounding NO. Because no religion teaches us to destroy, terrorise or kill innocent people. But unfortunately the leader and regulator of media machine and world’s state are huge mighty. And in present who is the carrier of special self-seeking thought. Their double-dealing policy, discriminatory and causeless excessive focus on Islamist radicals are favouring far-right extremists today. It’s been also added media’s fabrication on Islamists which is helping non-islamists go under radar.

So I think now we do clearly need to be concerned by people on the right wing who are capable of graduating sorts of terrorised acts.Otherwise west and europe will be under destruction by them oneday, surely not by their so-called ‘muslim’ terrorist or extremist. This is the truth and it will be exposed oneday.

Quran says : “And declare, The Truth has come and falsehood has vanished, for falsehood by its nature is bound to perish.’’ [ Al-Isra,17:81 ]

Assalamu Alykum Owa Rahmutullah…….

(www.facebook.com/nash.islam / 01.09.2011)

 

Palestinian Bid in line with International Resolution, says Official

BERLIN, September 1, 2011 (WAFA) – Azzam al-Ahmad, member of Fatah Central Committee, Thursday said the Palestinian bid to seek full United Nations membership of a Palestinian state within 1967 borders in September comes in line with international legitimacy resolutions based on UN Partition Resolution 181, and does not contradict resuming negotiations based on ending
settlement activities and on the two-state solution.

Al-Ahmad, during a political seminar organized by Fatah movement in the German capital, Berlin, said the move to the UN comes as a result of fruitless negotiations with Israel, the halt in the peace process, the growth of Israeli extremism and the right wing, the drop in moderation and the Israeli refusal to recognize a peace partner.

He referred to US President Barack Obama’s speeches in Cairoand Ankara, where he expressed his support of a Palestinian state and his rejection of continued construction by Israel of new settlements on disputed land. Al-Ahmad also referred to the inability of the Quartet and the UN to make progress on the Palestinian issue.

He reiterated the Palestinian leadership’s persistence in continuing the internal reconciliation despite US and Israeli threats, and noted positive efforts made towards achieving political and social reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah.

(english.wafa.ps / 01.09.2011)

Israel arrests Hamas leader in West Bank

JERUSALEM —  The Israeli military says a militant Hamas leader whose son collaborated with Israel has been arrested in the West Bank.

The military would not say why Hassan Yousef of the Islamic Hamas group was taken into custody or provide any other details.

Yousef was released from an Israeli prison a month ago after serving six years.

Shortly afterward, he told an Israeli TV station that the Palestinians are planning demonstrations to support their quest for U.N. endorsement of a Palestinian state after the General Assembly convenes in late September.

Asked if the rallies could turn violent, Yousef warned of increasing frustrations.

His son, Mosab Hassan Yousef, wrote a book about his experiences spying on militants for Israel’s Shin Bet security service.

(www.signonsandiego.com / 01.09.2011)

Hoofdofficier Syrische stad Hama stapt op uit protest

De hoofdofficier van justitie van de Syrische stad Hama heeft laten weten dat hij ontslag heeft genomen uit protest tegen het bloedige optreden van het regime tegen betogers. In een videoboodschap die gisteravond werd verspreid zegt officier Adnan Bakkour dat hij is opgestapt, omdat veiligheidstroepen op 31 juli 72 gevangenen hebben vermoord en tijdens het beleg van de stad in augustus nog eens 420 mensen hebben gedood.

Het Syrische staatspersbureau SANA ontkent dat Bakkour ontslag heeft genomen. ‘Terroristen’ zouden hem maandag ontvoerd hebben en hem hebben gedwongen de verklaring op video af te leggen.

Gebeurtenissen in Syrië kunnen moeilijk geverifieerd worden omdat het regime geen buitenlandse journalisten toelaat en binnenlandse verslaggeving aan banden heeft gelegd. Volgens activisten zijn bij het optreden tegen de protestbeweging in de afgelopen vijf maanden ongeveer 2200 mensen omgekomen.

(www.parool.nl / 01.09.2011)