Israel seeks to punish PA over UN human rights probe

The illegal Israeli settlement of Har Homa in the Israeli-occupied West Bank (file photo)
The recent decision by the UN Human Rights Council to probe the illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank has drawn Israel’s ire, prompting Tel Aviv to seek punishment for the Palestinian Authority (PA).
A meeting of eight senior Israeli ministers is to be held in Israel on Sunday to discuss sanctions against the Palestinian Authority and representatives of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Israel.

It is, however, not clear if the forum of ministers will reach any decisions in the March 25 meeting, Haaretz reported.

According to one source, three of the eight Israeli ministers, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon and Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz support freezing the transfer of tax revenues to the PA.

Senior Israeli officials have previously said that Israel has no intention of cooperating with the UN committee. Netanyahu ‘s office also announced on Friday that the committee members would be denied entry into Israel.

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, the spokesman for the acting Palestinian Authority chief, Mahmoud Abbas, has described the establishment of the UN Human Rights Council’s investigative committee as a shift in position of the world in favor of the rights of Palestinians.

Nearly 500,000 Israelis live in more than 100 settlement units built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the West Bank and East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

(presstv.com / 25.03.2012)

Land Day march will not reach the border

 

Dawood holds a poster publicizing the gathering.
Dawood holds a poster publicizing the gathering.

BEIRUT/SIDON, Lebanon: Despite previous announcements that a planned Land Day march at the end of the month would go to the Israeli-Lebanese border, the Lebanese branch of the Global March to Jerusalem will instead head to Beaufort Castle, east of Nabatieh.

Sources close to the march told The Daily Star that the route change was due to a desire on the part of organizers to prevent friction on the border.

Last spring, the Israeli army killed around 10 Palestinians and injured nearly 100 more when protesters split off from the route of a Nakba Day march and rushed to the border at Maroun al-Ras.

But another source from the committee organizing the march told The Daily Star that the group had submitted three possible end-points for the protest to the Lebanese Army for approval, none of them on the Blue Line: Beaufort Castle, Bint Jbeil and Naqoura. “Given what took place last year, we needed to choose a place that was not so close [to the border] so we don’t repeat last year’s experience,” they said.

The Lebanese organizing committee for the Global March to Jerusalem officially announced last week that groups from Palestinian camps and other points in Lebanon would head for Jerusalem, or the closest possible point.

“While Palestinians march from Palestinian cities and villages in the West Bank and Gaza and the 1948 lands toward Jerusalem, and thousands of Palestinians head to pray at the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Church of the Holy Sepulchre [in Jerusalem], hundreds of thousands of supporters of the Jerusalem cause, including Palestinian refugees and Arabs and Muslims will try – alongside free people of the world – to reach the closest point to Jerusalem,” a committee statement said.

One Shatila-based march organizer, Rima Dawood, told The Daily Star that 400 international activists are expected to arrive in Lebanon March 26 to join the protest. Other groups will converge near the borders in Egypt and Jordan. Plans for a Syria march are still not firm given the ongoing uprising there.

Ain al-Hilweh’s Yasser al-Ali, a member of the march’s executive committee in Lebanon, told The Daily Star that “those who can will fly … directly to Jerusalem. Those who cannot leave their countries will stage demonstrations in large squares or in front of Israeli embassies if their countries have them.”

Participants have been registering their names in person at points inside Palestinian refugee camps, or online. Dawood said it is not yet clear how many people will take part in Lebanon, but she expected as many as 30,000.

Maher Shibyata, a Fatah official in Ain al-Hilweh, said the march will focus on Palestinian unity. “Only the Palestinian flag will be raised, not those of Palestinian factions. Slogans will also be unified,” he said.

Organizers have consistently stressed the peaceful nature of the march, but are taking security precautions in any case.

Some registrants are being asked to give their blood types, and Dawood said the buses – which will take marchers toward Beaufort Castle – will be accompanied by ambulances.

Even so, one Fatah official in Shatila, who did not wish to be named, told The Daily Star he was ambivalent about the plans. He said the wounded from last year’s march had not been properly cared for, and was hesitant to put Palestinian lives at risk.

Others seemed more prepared for possible danger. Abu Thaer, a Fatah fighter from Ain al-Hilweh registered his blood type as “Palestinian” and said he will head to the border unarmed, “without a Kalashnikov, but with the will to fight with our bodies.”

Land Day has been commemorated on March 30 since 1976, when Palestinian protests against planned Israeli land confiscations were met by violent crackdowns.

(www.dailystar.com.lb / 25.03.2012)

Help Gazan youth through breakdance!

During the Israeli attack of 2009, the recreation center used by the CampsBreakerz breakdancing group in the Gaza Strip was destroyed. (Take a look for yourself, here.)

That didn’t stop them, however; they have been practicing ever since in a cramped extra room owned by a relative in the Nuseirat Refugee Camp. But now, they want to expand. The CampsBreakerz reputation has grown in the past three years, and more youth than ever before want to learn the art of breakdancing and be part of a team. In a territory where unemployment among youth is over 50%, and the prospects of being able to travel outside are slim, the CampsBreakerz offer an opportunity to use their time productively, develop confidence in their abilities and — simply put — feel good about themselves.(For a longer interview with the two founders, visit here.)

But they need your help. The crew needs $10,000 to complete their new facility — including workshop rooms, mattresses (protection from falls), gymnastics equipment and uniforms. (The crew will be able to improve their situation with any amount of money, but $10k will put them over the top!)

This is a concrete way you can help lessen the isolation and deprivation in the Gaza Strip. Once the CampsBreakerz’ new headquarters is complete, a big show is planned that will draw youth and their families from across the Strip. An international delegation of donors and breakdancers will be there to help celebrate as well! Everyone who donates, no matter how small, will be offered the chance to be part of that delegation (at their own expense, but with all permissions, itineraries, etc. arranged).

You CAN make a difference! Donate today. Any amount at all will help. Then, please pass this link to everyone you know. Post it on your Facebook page and to your Twitter account. Advertise it in your blog. Tell your raders you donated, and ask them to do the same!

NOTE: All those who donate will be invited to travel to Gaza in a special delegation to see the new facility for themselves and be a VIP guest at a special performance there.(Attendees will travel at their own expense, but all arrangements and itineraries will be organized for them!)

(www.indiegogo.com/projects/83130 / 25.03.2012)

Zionist Logic — Malcolm X on Zionism


Taken from The Egyptian Gazette — Sept. 17, 1964

The Zionist armies that now occupy Palestine claim their ancient Jewish prophets predicted that in the “last days of this world” their own God would raise them up a “messiah” who would lead them to their promised land, and they would set up their own “divine” government in this newly-gained land, this “divine” government would enable them to “rule all other nations with a rod of iron.”

If the Israeli Zionists believe their present occupation of Arab Palestine is the fulfillment of predictions made by their Jewish prophets, then they also religiously believe that Israel must fulfill its “divine” mission to rule all other nations with a rod of irons, which only means a different form of iron-like rule, more firmly entrenched even, than that of the former European Colonial Powers.

These Israeli Zionists religiously believe their Jewish God has chosen them to replace the outdated European colonialism with a new form of colonialism, so well disguised that it will enable them to deceive the African masses into submitting willingly to their “divine” authority and guidance, without the African masses being aware that they are still colonized.

CAMOUFLAGE

The Israeli Zionists are convinced they have successfully camouflaged their new kind of colonialism. Their colonialism appears to be more “benevolent,” more “philanthropic,” a system with which they rule simply by getting their potential victims to accept their friendly offers of economic “aid,” and other tempting gifts, that they dangle in front of the newly-independent African nations, whose economies are experiencing great difficulties. During the 19th century, when the masses here in Africa were largely illiterate it was easy for European imperialists to rule them with “force and fear,” but in this present era of enlightenment the African masses are awakening, and it is impossible to hold them in check now with the antiquated methods of the 19th century.

The imperialists, therefore, have been compelled to devise new methods. Since they can no longer force or frighten the masses into submission, they must devise modern methods that will enable them to manouevre the African masses into willing submission.

The modern 20th century weapon of neo-imperialism is “dollarism.” The Zionists have mastered the science of dollarism: the ability to come posing as a friend and benefactor, bearing gifts and all other forms of economic aid and offers of technical assistance. Thus, the power and influence of Zionist Israel in many of the newly “independent” African nations has fast-become even more unshakeable than that of the 18th century European colonialists… and this new kind of Zionist colonialism differs only in form and method, but never in motive or objective.

At the close of the 19th century when European imperialists wisely foresaw that the awakening masses of Africa would not submit to their old method of ruling through force and fears, these ever-scheming imperialists had to create a “new weapon,” and to find a “new base” for that weapon.

DOLLARISM

The number one weapon of 20th century imperialism is zionist dollarism, and one of the main bases for this weapon is Zionist Israel. The ever-scheming European imperialists wisely placed Israel where she could geographically divide the Arab world, infiltrate and sow the seed of dissension among African leaders and also divide the Africans against the Asians.

Zionist Israel’s occupation of Arab Palestine has forced the Arab world to waste billions of precious dollars on armaments, making it impossible for these newly independent Arab nations to concentrate on strengthening the economies of their countries and elevate the living standard of their people.

And the continued low standard of living in the Arab world has been skillfully used by the Zionist propagandists to make it appear to the Africans that the Arab leaders are not intellectually or technically qualified to lift the living standard of their people … thus, indirectly “enducing” Africans to turn away from the Arabs and towards the Israelis for teachers and technical assistance.

“They cripple the bird’s wing, and then condemn it for not flying as fast as they.”

The imperialists always make themselves look good, but it is only because they are competing against economically crippled newly independent countries whose economies are actually crippled by the Zionist-capitalist conspiracy. They can’t stand against fair competition, thus they dread Gamal Abdul Nasser’s call for African-Arab Unity under Socialism.

MESSIAH?

If the “religious” claim of the Zionists is true that they were to be led to the promised land by their messiah, and Israel’s present occupation of Arab Palestine is the fulfillment of that prophesy: where is their messiah whom their prophets said would get the credit for leading them there? It was Ralph Bunche who “negotiated” the Zionists into possession of Occupied Palestine! Is Ralph Bunche the messiah of Zionism? If Ralph Bunche is not their messiah, and their messsiah has not yet come, then what are they doing in Palestine ahead of their messiah?

Did the Zionists have the legal or moral right to invade Arab Palestine, uproot its Arab citizens from their homes and seize all Arab property for themselves just based on the “religious” claim that their forefathers lived there thousands of years ago? Only a thousand years ago the Moors lived in Spain. Would this give the Moors of today the legal and moral right to invade the Iberian Peninsula, drive out its Spanish citizens, and then set up a new Moroccan nation … where Spain used to be, as the European zionists have done to our Arab brothers and sisters in Palestine?…

In short the Zionist argument to justify Israel’s present occupation of Arab Palestine has no intelligent or legal basis in history … not even in their own religion. Where is their Messiah?

(www.malcolm-x.org / 25.03.2012)

US-backed Saudi Arabia delivers weapons to terrorists in Syria

A Syria-bound Saudi Arabian shipment of military equipment intended for Syrian terrorists is on its way to Jordan, an Arab diplomat says.

The high ranking Arab diplomat told AFP on condition of anonymity on Saturday that Saudi Arabia’s new military shipment for the terrorist Free Syrian Army was on its way to Jordan.

The diplomat did not give further information about how the weapons would be delivered.

The announcement came as last week Syrian Information Minister Adnan Mahmoud said that Saudi Arabia and Qatar were backing “armed terrorist gangs” operating in Syria and are therefore responsible for the bloodshed in the country.

“Some of the countries backing armed terrorist gangs, such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, are accomplices to the terrorism targeting the Syrian people … and bear responsibility for the bloodletting,” the minister said.

The charges were renewed on Syrian state television on Saturday after two huge bombs exploded in central Damascus, killing at least 27 people and wounding nearly 100 others.

“Saudi Arabia is sending us terrorists,” said a resident of the bombed region on Syrian television.

The delivery of military equipment to Syrian rebels comes as Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March 2011.

The West and their puppet Syrian opposition are responsible for the unrest in the country.

The Syrian president said on February 20 that “some foreign countries” are fueling the turmoil in Syria by supporting and funding “armed terrorist groups fighting against the government.”

(www.islamicinvitationturkey.com / 25.03.2012)

Malmö mayor in new row with Sweden’s Jews

Malmö mayor in new row with Sweden's Jews

Sweden’s Jewish community has railed anew against Malmö mayor IlmarReepalu after comments suggesting the city’s Jewish community had been “infiltrated” by Sweden Democrats to foment anti-Muslim sentiments.

“With this letter, we want to point out that Ilmar Reepalu no long has any credibility among us Jews in Sweden,” reads a letter signed by the heads of the Jewish communities in Malmö, Stockholm, and Gothenburg.

“Regardless of what he says and does from now on, we don’t trust him.”

The letter comes following an interview published on Thursday in the liberal-leaning magazine NEO in which Reepalu discussed the “strong ties” between the Jewish community and the Sweden Democrats, a political party with a clear anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim line which has its roots in Sweden’s neo-Nazi movement.

According to Reepalu, “Sweden Democrats have infiltrated the Jewish community in order to push their hate of Muslims”.

The statements were immediately dismissed by Fred Kahn, chair of the Jewish Community in Malmö (Judiska församlingen) as “pure fantasy”.

Reepalu, a Social Democrat, quickly backtracked on Thursday, admitting to the Dagens Nyheter (DN) daily that he “had no basis” for his claims and that he “shouldn’t have said it that way”.

But the back tracking came too late for the Official Council of Swedish Jewish Communities (Judiska centralrådet i Sverige – JC), which on Friday penned a letter to Social Democrat head Stefan Löfven blasting Reepalu’s claims.

According to the Jewish leaders, the Malmö mayor has “crossed all boundaries” with his comments, especially considering that Reepalu previously laid blame on Sweden’s Jews for the threats, violence, and harassment to which they’ve been subjected.

“We are more than upset when we today read the interview in the magazine NEO where he flagrantly accuses Jews for ties with the Sweden Democrats,” they write.

“We’re all too familiar with these types of conspiracy theories.”

The Jewish community leaders also warned Löfven that the Social Democrats risk losing support among Sweden’s Jews, many of whom are members of the party, because of Reepalu’s comments.

“Many of them have recently expressed their dismay, but also sadness, about no longer being able to support a party represented by someone whose rhetoric is clearly anti-Semitic,” they write.

Speaking with the TT news agency following the release of the Jewish community’s letter, Reepalu once again defended himself.

“I’ve never been an anti-Semite and never will be,” he said.

“I’ve been in Israel with my children several times and explained to them the importance that Jewish culture has Europeans.”

However, Reepalu ruled out taking any extraordinary measures to make amends with the Jewish community.

“What can I do? They don’t listen,” he said.

(www.thelocal.se / 25.03.2012)

Toppunt van Hypocrisie

Als je echt tegen racisme bent, wees dan consequent, en werk samen met Joden die net zo weinig van het CIDI moeten hebben als ikzelf. En die zijn er genoeg.

Wie ook maar enigszins op de hoogte is van de discussie over Midden-Oosten gerelateerden conflicten in de Nederlandse media, kent ook de rol van het CIDI. Een club van Zionistische Israël-fanaten die geen kans voorbij laat gaan om te fungeren als spreekbuis en propagandamachine van het Israëlische regime.

Een regime, bekend om zijn systematische raciale segregatie van Arabische inwoners door middel van betonnen afscheidingsmuren, en ‘Jews-only’ wegen en bussen. Om de schijnprocessen van het Israëlische rechtssysteem, waarbij zelfs bij bewezen regelrechte moord op een Palestijn de Israëlische kolonist of soldaat steevast wordt vrijgesproken. Een regime, dat Palestijnen met regelmaat zonder enige aanklacht of vorm van proces maandenlang opsluit, en dat herhaaldelijk massamoorden pleegt vanuit de lucht via F-16′s en Apaches op de belegerde enclave Gaza.

Zonder pardon worden Palestijnen uit hun huizen in Oost-Jeruzalem gesmeten zodat deze betrokken kunnen worden door Zionistische Joden. Zonder pardon worden hele landerijen onteigend, de Palestijnse agrariërs zonder levensvoorzieningen achterlatend. Zonder pardon wordt een van de aller-oudste historische Islamitische begraafplaatsen (Ma’man Illah, ook bekend als Mamilla) in Jeruzalem, waar zelfs Sahaba begraven liggen, omgewoeld en uitgegraven voor de bouw van – hoe cynisch en laaghartig kun je zijn – een ‘Museum van Tolerantie’.

Hypocrisie van het CIDI: selectief anti-racisme

Dit is het regime waar het CIDI zich onvermoeibaar voor inspant – maar dat is niet de enige activiteit van deze dubieuze club. De heilige goedwillende vredestichter uithangend, steekt het CIDI veel moeite en tijd in politiek lobbyisme, en in het creëren van verbonden en affiliaties. Zo stond het CIDI samen met de gemeente Amsterdam en Marokkaanse organisaties in 2006 aan de wieg van het Joods-Marokkaans Netwerk Amsterdam (JMNA), een clubje dat – gewild of ongewild – Zionisten de kans geeft zich te profileren als vrienden van het Marokkaanse volk.

Recent is het ze opnieuw gelukt: het CIDI werd uitgenodigd om op 21 maart deel te nemen aan het anti-racisme evenement “Stop Racism! Celebrate Unity” van Quinsy Gario, bekend door zijn actie “Zwarte Piet is Racisme”. Er is niets op tegen om ook Joden aan een anti-racisme evenement deel te laten nemen, integendeel zelfs. Maar waarom juist een racistisch-extremistische groep zoals het CIDI? Waarom niet een organisatie zoals Een Ander Joods Geluid (EAJG), die veel duidelijkere anti-racistische denkbeelden uit en zich meestal juist tegen de Apartheidspraktijken van het Zionisme verzet? Een vreemde keus, die vele bedenkingen oproept.

Anti-racisme activist Quinsy desillusioneert

Legendarische anti-Apartheid activisten zoals Nelson Mandela en Desmond Tutu hebben meermalen aangegeven dat de Israëlische vorm van Apartheid de Zuid-Afrikaanse op vrijwel alle gebieden overtreft. En ze hebben gelijk: die overtreft deze onder andere in grimmigheid, gewelddadigheid, moordlust en mate van racisme.

Wat een grote teleurstelling dan ook in Quinsy Gario, een jongeman voor wie ik erg veel bewondering heb wegens zijn moedige strijd tegen geïnstitutionaliseerd racisme op grond van huidskleur. Hij is het boegbeeld van de ‘Zwarte Piet is Racisme’ beweging, een beweging die ik uit overtuiging en van harte steun – vanaf het eerste uur. Niemand zal naar de video hebben gekeken waar hij door Nederlandse politieagenten afgeranseld wordt, zonder een gevoel van afschuw, en tegelijk een gevoel van woede tegen dergelijk ongerechtvaardigd geweld.

Het is schokkend en teleurstellend dat Quinsy een racistische organisatie zoals CIDI bij de opzet van zijn evenement heeft betrokken. De teleurstelling werd later nog vergroot door zijn voortdurende ongevoeligheid voor de kritiek die hij hierop kreeg. Zo schreef op de event-pagina ‘Jelle Amsterdam’ een commentaar dat op perfecte wijze samenvat waarom het betrekken van CIDI bij een anti-racisme happening onlogisch is en het doel ervan ondermijnt. Zijn commentaar kreeg grote bijval. Kijk maar eens op Facebook.

‘Jelle Amsterdam’ op Facebook

Bij Quinsy kun je nog denken: wat weet hij over het Midden-Oosten? In hoeverre is hij op de hoogte van de racistische praktijken van de Zionistische staat? Ik kan deze vragen niet beantwoorden, maar het blijft een feit dat je als anti-racisme activist geen goede sier maakt door met Zionisten te flirten en – zo mogelijk nog erger – racisten een podium biedt om voor te wenden dat ze tegen racisme zijn.

“If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything” – Malcolm X

Op de deelnemerslijst is nog een naam te vinden die teleurstelling oproept: de zangeres Rajae El Mouhandiz. Ook voor haar heb ik bewondering; haar muziek ligt me wel, en ik vind het knap hoe ze haar eigen geluid weet te creëren. Toch had ik wel enige bedenkingen. Op Facebook voltrok zich ooit een nogal scherpe discussie tussen mij en haar, waarbij het me duidelijk werd dat ze als het op Palestina aankomt weinig behoefte lijkt te hebben aan het hanteren van eenduidige heldere principes, en liever alle partijen te vriend houdt.

Helemaal verbaasd was ik dan ook niet, toen ik hoorde dat ze zou optreden bij dat ‘anti-racisme’ evenement (ja, die aanhalingstekens horen daar echt, als het CIDI van de partij is). Ik was wel iets anders: ernstig verstoord. En dat ben ik nog steeds. Ik vind dit dermate onprincipieel dat het de fatsoensnormen overschrijdt. Ik beschouw het als een schoffering van het gehele Palestijnse volk, met de boodschap: we strijden weliswaar tegen racisme, maar jullie doen er niet toe. En dat pik ik niet: niet van Quinsy Gario, en ook niet van Rajae el Mouhandiz.

Ik heb Quinsy en Rajae dan ook ontvriend op Facebook. Noem het maar overdreven, of noem het overdreven dat ik dit stuk schrijf; dat vind ik verder prima. Ik noem het consequent zijn. Als ik het niet zou doen, zou het huichelachtig van mij zijn. Ik heb net zo weinig op met racisten, als met hen die hen de hand boven het hoofd houden.

Een anti-racisme evenement organiseren onder de naam “Stop Racism! Celebrate Unity” en dan – schaamteloos – vertegenwoordigers van een racistische Zionistische beweging zoals het CIDI daarbij betrekken? Je kunt het ook echt te bont maken. Als je echt tegen racisme bent, wees dan consequent, en werk samen met Joden die net zo weinig van het CIDI moeten hebben als ikzelf. En die zijn er genoeg.

(Tariq Shadid / www.wijblijvenhier.nl / 25.03.2012)

At least 11,000 join pro-Palestine march in Morocco

RABAT (Reuters) — Tens of thousands of Moroccans staged a pro-Palestinian march in Rabat on Sunday in a show of force organized by an Islamist group seen as the main opposition to Morocco’s monarchy.

A Reuters reporter in the Moroccan capital said at least 40,000 people joined the march called by Al-Adl Wal Ihsan (Justice and Spirituality). A senior police officer put the number at 11,000 while organizers said 100,000 had turned out.

It was Al-Adl’s first march since December when it pulled out of pro-democracy protests, inspired by Arab uprisings elsewhere and aimed at forcing the Arab world’s longest-serving dynasty to become a constitutional monarchy.

Morocco has not had a revolution of the kind seen in Egypt, Libya or Tunisia. King Mohammed is still firmly in charge after he offered to trim his powers and allowed moderate Islamists to lead the government after their Justice and Development Party won an election in November.

Ali Anouzla, a political analyst and editor of Lakome.com news portal, said Al-Adl sought to send a message to Moroccan authorities that they remained a force to reckoned with, even after withdrawing from the pro-democracy protest movement.

“Al-Adl’s withdrawal from the February 20 Movement has tremendously reduced pressure on the PJD. With this march, Al-Adl is trying to make a comeback and sends a message to skeptics who raised doubt about its support base,” Anouzla said.

While the protests of the February 20 Movement lost much of their momentum after Al-Adl’s withdrawal, unrest over poverty, corruption and unemployment still erupts, sometimes violently.

Al-Adl is seen as Morocco’s biggest and best-organized Islamist group. It is active mostly in universities and in helping the poor, but is banned from politics due to what is seen as its hostile rhetoric towards the monarchy.

Hassan Bennajeh, an Al-Adl wal Ihsan spokesman, said Sunday’s march was to mark Land Day, when Palestinians recall 1976 protests over Israeli expropriation of Arab-owned land.

“We have always been active on issues that touch the heart of Moroccans. While we protest here in support of Palestine, members of our group continue to be persecuted and jailed by authorities for their activism on local issues,” he said.

“Everybody knows that the Moroccan regime supports normalization with Israel and has helped thousands of Moroccan Jews to migrate to and populate Israel,” Bennajeh added.

Morocco has been a discreet broker between Israel and Arab countries and established low-key diplomatic ties with Israel in 1994. In 2000, Rabat froze ties with Israel after violence intensified in the Israeli-occupied territories.

The marchers carried Palestinian flags, balloons in the flag’s black, red, white and green, and placards that read “Palestinians are resisting while Arab regimes are haggling”.

They chanted: “The people want the liberation of Palestine” and “We will never forget you Ahmed Yassin”, naming an Islamist Palestinian Hamas leader assassinated by the Israelis in 2004.

Most of the protesters appeared to be Islamists, with women wearing headscarves and marching separately from men.

(www.maannews.net / 25.03.2012)

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood says committed to democracy, fight against terrorism

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood said it is committed to a civil state that respects human rights and international conventions. (Al Arabiya)

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood said it is committed to a civil state that respects human rights and international conventions.
Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood group on Sunday said it was committed to a civil state that respects human rights and sees the participation of all, in a bid to dispel fears that the group has plans to take over power in Syria after the collapse of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

The Brotherhood leader, Ali Sadreddine Bayanouni, told a press conference in Istanbul that his group was committed to “a civil and democratic republican state with a parliamentary system, in which all the people are treated equal regardless of faith or ethnicity.”

Bayanouni added that his group is also committed to a state that respects human rights, including “the freedom of belief, thought, and of expression.”

The group said a post-Asaad Syria should be built on “dialogue and participation,” adding that it supports a state that “upholds the value of the people without tutelage based on a system of separation of powers.”

Seeking to reassure the West, Bayanouni said his groups is committed to” renouncing and fighting terrorism and respecting international treaties.”

The Islamist group called for a comprehensive national dialogue between all Syrian ethnic, religious and political groups to prepare for the post-Assad era.

He said he was confident that the next “Friends of Syria” meeting will be held in Damascus.

Bassam Ishaq, member of the Istanbul-based Syrian National Council, told Al Arabiya that the Muslim Brotherhood group will be part of a national accord for the new Syria.

“The regime has long used the Muslim Brother “as a scarecrow to frighten Syrians and tell them that the alternative will be worse.”

“It was important for the group to come out today and explain its position and its vision for the future of Syria,” Ishaq said.

(english.alarabiya.net / 25.03.2012)

FIOE calls for intensive action in support of al-Aqsa Mosque and the GMJ

Sunday, 25 March 2012 – The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe calls for intensive action in support of al-Aqsa Mosque and participation in the Global March to Jerusalem.

In the Name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful

The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) invites Muslims, and the management bodies of organisations, Islamic centres, and mosques across the European Continent to dedicate the last week in March 2012 to intensive activities in support of the city of Jerusalem (al-Quds) and the blessed al-Aqsa Mosque, given the escalating Israeli threats to the city, its holy sites, and the Palestinian inhabitants.

This initiative comes as part of worldwide efforts to support the just cause of Jerusalem, including the ’Global March to Jerusalem’ on 30 March 2012 in opposition to Israeli occupation and prevailing for the values of truth, justice, liberties of peoples, and human dignity.

The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) voices its deep concern regarding the situation in the city of Jerusalem, and the violations of the sanctity of the blessed al-Aqsa Mosque, and Muslim and Christian holy sites by the Israeli Occupation and its extremist groups. Furthermore, the Federation affirms its solidarity with the Palestinian people, demanding they be allowed to regain their stolen rights, and realise their legitimate demands. The Federation emphasises the importance of universal, concerted effort and cooperation to confront the arrogance of the Israeli occupation persisting in its unrestrained and aggressive policies against the city of Jerusalem and its inhabitants, as well as engaging in effective action to bring an end to these flagrant violations.

The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) urges organisations, groupings, Islamic centres, and mosques across the continent to undertake a number of activities and initiatives in this regard, among them, for example:

Dedicating the sermon (Khutbah) on Friday, 30 March 2012 to reflect on the situation in Jerusalem, the merits of al-Aqsa Mosque, and the threat posed by the Israeli occupation to Jerusalem, its holy sites, and inhabitants, and the necessity of supporting this just cause, and showing solidarity with the Jerusalemites.

Effective participation in the ‘Global March to Jerusalem’ on Friday and Saturday, 30 and 31 March 2012 respectively, through marches and protests organised locally in European capitals and cities, with the purpose of highlighting the issue of Jerusalem, and working with civil society organisations in this respect.

Holding diverse cultural and media activities for the public, such as exhibitions, seminars, and lectures, as well as issuing press releases, while highlighting the issue of Jerusalem on websites and through social media, and informing of the reality faced by the inhabitants of the city and their suffering.

Collecting donations for Jerusalem and projects that strengthen the determination to resist of the city’s Palestinian inhabitants under occupation, through trusted charitable and development bodies.

Brussels, 22 March 2012

The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE)

(gm2j.com / 25.03.2012)