Zarqawi’s brother-in-law reported killed while leading Al Nusrah Front unit



Banner for the Al Nusrah Front, a jihadist group in Syria. Image from the SITE Intelligence Group.

A brother-in-law of al Qaeda in Iraq’s former leader, Abu Musab al Zarqawi, has died while fighting for the Al Nusrah Front in Syria, Al Jazeera reported. And the jihadist replacing him as emir of an Al Nusrah subgroup has also served Zarqawi in Iraq.

Iyad al Tubasi, who is also known as Abu Julaybib, is thought to have been killed earlier this week in Daraa, a town in southwestern Syria near the Jordanian border. Al Tubasi is just the latest Zarqawi family member to have been killed on the battlefield or captured.

Al Jazeera’s sources say that “the Al Mujahidin Shura Council and the legislative committee of Al Nusrah Front…appointed 38 year-old Jordanian Mustafa Abd al Latif Salih, known as Abu Anas al Sahhaba, as the emir of the front in Syria.” Salih is not the overall emir of Al Nusrah, but instead leads a subgroup in Daraa province. The Nusrah Front has been active in Daraa, and has claimed five suicide attacks in the town since the end of June.

Earlier this week, the US State Department said that al Qaeda in Iraq’s emir, Abu Du’a, or Abu Bakr al Baghdadi al Husseini al Qurshi, “is in control of both AQI and Al Nusrah.”

Salih, the new emir of the Al Nusrah subgroup, was “active in the Salafi jihadist trend” in Jordan and “accompanied” Zarqawi ” in Iraq for a while, Al Jazeera reported. “One of his duties in Iraq was to work in Syria as a recruiter of fighters and transport them to Iraq.” Salih “was arrested twice in Syria” and allegedly tortured before being turned over to the Jordanians at some point.

Although Salih was supposedly tortured by the Syrian regime, Bashar al Assad’s henchmen actually supported the al Qaeda in Iraq facilitation network inside Syria. For years, a network headed by a top al Qaeda facilitator known as Abu Ghadiyah, and others, was sponsored by Syrian officials. That network sent foreign fighters and suicide bombers to wage jihad on behalf of al Qaeda in Iraq. US special operations forces killed Abu Ghadiyah and members of his staff during a raid in Abu Kamal in eastern Syria in October 2008.

Several of Zarqawi’s family members are known to have been killed or captured while waging jihad in the Middle East. Zayed Sweiti and Firas Khalailah, two of Zarqawi’s cousins, were recently detained by Jordanian border guards after spending five months in Syria. Muhammad Fazi al Harasheh, a nephew of Zarqawi also known as Abu Hammam al Zarqawi, was killed in a US drone strike in Yemen sometime in early 2012.

Additionally, in 2010, Sami al Daini, another brother-in-law to Zarqwai, was appointed by the emir of al Qaeda’s Islamic State of Iraq to lead forces in Diyala province.

Numerous Zarqawi aides and associates, as well as fighters from Zarqawi’s home town of Zarqa, are also known to have been killed in the Middle East and South Asia, or are currently operating there.

( / 14.12.2012)

Israel violates Gaza ceasefire deal by threatening fishermen, farmers

The Israeli navy continues to shoot at Palestinian fishing boats well within the range agreed upon for the ceasefire deal.

GAZA (IRIN) – When Jaber Abu Rjaila heard about the recent ceasefire agreement in Gaza, he rushed back to his farmland — for the first time in more than ten years.

“We have been farmers for generations. It’s our life and I’m very glad that we are back here now freely working,” he said. “I’ve been longing for this moment.”

His farmland lies in the “access-denied” and buffer zone areas close to the Israeli-built barrier, but the recent ceasefire agreement holds out the promise of an easing of naval and land controls at the border.

Oxfam says the five-year blockade by Israel has “devastated Gaza’s farming and fishingindustries,” leading to the closure of nearly 60 percent of Gaza’s businesses, according to a new briefing paper published this month (“Beyond Ceasefire,” 6 December 2012).

Abu Rjaila has ambitions to plant tomatoes, parsley and zucchini for sale, and to help feed his 14-member family. But he knows he is not in the clear yet.

Israeli soldiers often use their loudspeakers to tell him to keep tens of meters from the barrier — and he still worries about random shooting, sudden Israeli incursions, and unexploded shells.

Abu Rjaila’s house and land are about 450 meters from the border in eastern Khan Younis, where he owns a seven-hectare farm on some of the most fertile land in Gaza (one hectare is equal to 10,000 square meters).

After the ceasefire was introduced on 21 November, bringing to an end Israel’s eight-day attack on Gaza, hundreds of Palestinians who own houses and land in these areas returned.

Israeli gunfire

Officials in Gaza say the Israelis agreed to ease travel and economic restrictions, although the returning farmers faced immediate warnings from Israeli forces saying “go away” and “go back,” often accompanied by warning shots.

Palestinian medical sources said one Palestinian was killed and more than 20 injured by Israeli gunfire in the area just two days after the ceasefire, when a group including farmers visited land close to the fence.

Ibrahim al-Qedra, the deputy agriculture minister in Gaza, said that the easing of restrictions on the 5,000 hectares in the buffer zone would reduce humanitarian needs in Gaza.

“We need to reach our border areas and lift the buffer zone restrictions to let people return to their lands, live in their houses, and farm their lands freely — we need to restore our food security.”

Historically the area was a major food source for Gaza with citrus and olive orchards, and seasonal production of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions and potatoes for local markets.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) confirmed the development shortly after the ceasefire was announced: “For the past few days, farmers have been allowed to access, with their equipment and vehicles, agricultural land located as close as 100 meters from Gaza’s perimeter fence in some areas,” OCHA stated (“Escalation in hostilities, Gaza and southern Israel,” 26 November 2012 [PDF]).

The ceasefire agreement regarding the easing of restrictions near the border remains vague, though.

“We don’t have a clear signal from Egypt about the full access; people returned to their lands voluntarily while we are still discussing the mechanisms in the current indirect negotiations to reach an understanding regarding these areas,” said al-Qedra.

“We ask the public to be careful when heading there,” he said.

Threats to fishermen

The situation is similar for Gaza’s fishermen.

Since 2006 the Israeli navy has only allowed fishermen like Mohammed Abu Riala, 32, to operate up to three miles from shore. With the ceasefire they were told they could head out six nautical miles.

“It’s good news in principle. As soon as we heard about the expansion to six miles range we sailed to that spot. But we faced the same Israeli soldiers’ threats through loudspeakers: ‘return, go back or …,’ and several warning shots in the water, over our heads, and close to our boat.”

A number of his fellow fishermen have already been arrested and taken to the Israeli port ofAshdod.

“[The six-mile range] is not enough, because the muddy nature of the seabed in this range is still almost the same as the three miles range in nature, with a minor difference in fish size and amounts,” Riala said.

The Israeli military said it is simply doing their job of protecting Israel’s naval border: “Vessels that stray from the designated area are handled by the navy according to standard procedures,” a military spokesperson said, when asked about the arrests.

Oxfam says the Israeli government should immediately stop using the military to enforce the land and sea buffer-zones and find other ways to protect the border.

“The current negotiations between Hamas and the government of Israel represent an unprecedented opportunity — people in Gaza need more than a ceasefire, they need an end to the blockade for good,” said Nishant Pandey, an Oxfam representative.

Smaller catches

For both farmers and fishermen in Gaza, there is still much uncertainty following the ceasefire.

“What we ask for is [to] sail and fish freely, with no threats on our lives in the middle of the sea,” said Nizar Ayyash, head of the General Association of Fishermen in Gaza.

“There are about 50,000 people in Gaza who depend on fishing as their principal source of income. How is six miles with 38 miles of coastline enough to secure better amounts and sizes of fish for more than 1.6 million people, and a proper income for thousands of fishermen and their families?” said Ayyash.

Before 2000, fishermen travelled out nearly 20 nautical miles, producing a catch of 4,000 tons a year. Catches are now down to 1,200 tons.

Despite the years of false dawns, Abu Rjalia is hopeful he can replant his deserted fields: “We need our life restored,” he said.

( / 14.12.2012)

Israeli soldiers shoot, injure young Gaza man

An Israeli soldier points his gun at Palestinians who reached the fence in the southern Gaza Strip

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – A young Palestinian man was shot and injured Friday evening by Israeli soldiers east of Jabaliya in the northern Gaza Strip, medical officials said.

Gaza paramedics told Ma’an they evacuated a 19-year-old to Al-Awda Hospital in the northern Gaza Strip after he was hit by two live bullets in his feet near Abu Safiyya Hill east of Jabaliya.

They added that Israeli troops fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at Palestinians near the border area. One man suffered from tear-gas inhalation, they said.

An Israeli army spokeswoman told Ma’an that “IDF forces acted within the rules of engagement” but said she was unable to elaborate about why the soldiers opened fire.

Israeli troops have fired several times across the border since a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas went into effect in November.

The latest incident was Monday, when military vehicles crossed several hundred meters past the border near Khan Younis, but there were no reports of injury.

Israel has imposed a no-go zone on the borders, but agreed to stop targeting Palestinians in the area as part of the ceasefire, Gaza’s government has said.

When a Palestinian was killed in the zone by Israeli forces a few days after the ceasefire, Hamas security forces deployed in the area to make sure Palestinians didn’t approach the border fence.

( / 14.12.2012)

Timmermans moet relaties met Israël niet intensiveren

Vlak na zijn aantreden werd minister van Buitenlandse Zaken Timmermans geconfronteerd met het gevoelige Midden-Oosten dossier. De inkt van het regeerakkoord was nog niet droog of de Tweede Kamer eiste duidelijkheid over de Nederlandse stempositie bij de stemming over de ophoging van de Palestijnse VN-status.

Het VVD-PvdA kabinet koos de middenweg. Toen de Algemene Vergadering van de VN op 29 november over de statusophoging stemde, onthield Nederland zich. Onder Rutte-I zou Nederland tegen de ophoging hebben gestemd. Nu was Tsjechië de enige EU-lidstaat die dat deed.

Timmermans’ voorganger Uri Rosenthal voerde op EU-niveau het kamp van de “blocker states” aan die altijd alle pressie op de Israëlische regering trachtten te blokkeren. Dat Nederland zich onthield is een duidelijke aanwijzing dat ons land niet langer tot dat kamp behoort. Dat is winst.

Even onbegrijpelijk als zorgwekkend is daarentegen dat het kabinet lijkt vast te houden aan de intensivering van de bilaterale betrekkingen met Israël, een initiatief van het vorige kabinet, dat Israël onvoorwaardelijk heeft gesteund.

Daar wijst de Kamerbrief op waarmee minister Timmermans deze week de Nederlandse inzet voor het Midden-Oosten vredesproces presenteerde. Daarin stelt Timmermans meer samenwerking met Israël in het vooruitzicht “met betrekking tot economie, wetenschap, innovatie, onderzoek en investeringen, landbouw en cultuur.”

Mocht dit bewaarheid worden, is het kabinet glashard in ontkenning van de desastreuze gevolgen van Israëls politiek en valt het ten prooi aan dezelfde misvatting als Rutte-I: dat het uitbreiden van de Nederlands-Israëlische betrekkingen bevorderlijk zou zijn voor het vredesproces. Het tegendeel is waar.

Indien het kabinet een betekenisvolle bijdrage aan het vredesproces wil leveren, moet het een aantal harde conclusies durven trekken. Zeven willen we hieronder aanreiken. De focus ligt daarbij op het nederzettingenbeleid, de grootste bedreiging voor vrede.

(1) De regering-Netanyahu heeft een strategische keuze gemaakt om de twee-statenoplossing onmogelijk te maken. Het recente besluit om een nieuwe nederzetting in de vitale E-1 corridor te bouwen, in aanvulling op 3.000 huizen in bestaande nederzettingen, is daar het zoveelste bewijs van. Wil een levensvatbare Palestijnse staat gesticht kunnen worden, moeten nederzettingen ontmanteld worden. Netanyahu breidt deze op grote schaal uit.

(2) Er is geen reden om aan te nemen dat de Israëlische opstelling zal versoepelen. Integendeel, Netanyahu’s Likud-partij is voor de Israëlische parlementsverkiezingen in januari een lijstverbinding aangegaan met de extremistische Yisrael Beiteinu-partij van minister van Buitenlandse Zaken Lieberman. Relatief gematigde politici zijn van de Likud-lijst afgevoerd.
Volgens peilingen gaat het rechtse blok een klinkende overwinning behalen.

(3) Indien de internationale gemeenschap serieus naar een oplossing van het Israëlisch-Palestijnse conflict streeft, kán zij de confrontatie met het nederzettingenbeleid niet langer ontwijken. Immers, de wereldgemeenschap blijft herhalen dat het twee-statenmodel de enige werkbare oplossing is. Er is geen plan-B.

(4) De Verenigde Staten claimen de leiding over het Midden-Oosten vredesproces, maar zijn geen serieuze bemiddelaar en tonen geen leiderschap. Hierdoor is het ‘Kwartet’ (VS, EU, Rusland en VN) sinds de lancering tien jaar geleden volstrekt ineffectief. Op cruciale momenten heeft president Obama de regering-Netanyahu steeds onvoorwaardelijk gesteund. Amerikaanse veto’s hebben de VN-Veiligheidsraad systematisch geneutraliseerd, ook bij resoluties tegen het nederzettingenbeleid. Er is geen reden om aan te nemen dat dit in Obama’s tweede termijn zou veranderen. Het beste scenario is dat de VS pressie gedogen, die de EU op Israël uitoefent.

(5) De EU moet dan ook concrete voorbereidingen treffen voor een autonoom Midden-Oosten beleid. De afgelopen jaren heeft zij genoegen genomen met een ondergeschikte rol in het Kwartet. Zodra duidelijk wordt dat president Obama ook in zijn tweede termijn niet bereid is een doorbraak te forceren, komt het moment waarop de EU zich volledig moet toeleggen op beïnvloeding van de conflictpartijen via de bilaterale betrekkingen.

(6) Terwijl de EU zo´n autonoom beleid ontwikkelt, kan zij niet stilstaan. Simultaan moet zij “developments on the ground” indammen die de twee-statenoplossing vernietigen. De Europese positie is helder en robuust: de nederzettingen zijn illegaal en een obstakel voor vrede. Keer op keer verklaart de EU dat zij geen wijzigingen van de grenzen van 1967 zal accepteren waar niet ook de Palestijnen mee instemmen. De EU-Ministerraadconclusies van afgelopen maandag spreken klare taal: “De Europese Unie is diep geschokt over en sterk gekant tegen Israëlische plannen om nederzettingen uit te breiden”. Die positie moet nu eindelijk in concreet en effectief beleid vertaald worden, opdat Israël de Europese weerstand tegen het nederzettingenbeleid ook gaat voelen.

(7) Een daadkrachtig Europees beleid dat de nederzettingen indamt is ook een voorwaarde voor het overleven van de Palestijnse Autoriteit. Die verkeert in toenemende mate in een legitimiteitscrisis, doordat zij op de Westelijke Jordaanoever de rust bewaart, terwijl Israël daar steeds meer land inlijft waarop de Palestijnse staat zou moeten verrijzen. Vroeg of laat leidt dat tot een nieuwe geweldsexplosie en het instorten van de Autoriteit. De EU heeft miljarden in de Palestijnse staatsopbouw geïnvesteerd en ook daarom alle reden om in te grijpen.

In antwoord op Kamervragen zei minister Timmermans onlangs: “Uitbreiding van de nederzettingen is de grootste bedreiging voor een twee-statenoplossing.” Een intensivering van de Nederlands-Israëlische betrekkingen valt volstrekt niet met deze uitspraak te rijmen en zou de regering-Netanyahu geruststellen dat het nederzettingenbeleid straffeloos kan doorgaan.

Wil Nederland werkelijk aan vrede bijdragen, zal het moeten behoren tot de voorhoede van EU-lidstaten die een Europees beleid bevorderen dat de randvoorwaarden van de twee-statenoplossing proactief versterkt en de nederzettingen een halt toeroept.

Hans van den Broek

Voormalig minister van Buitenlandse Zaken en EU Commissaris voor Externe Betrekkingen. Lid van de Raad van Advies van The Rights Forum

Martin Siepermann 

Directeur The Rights Forum
( / 14.12.2012)

Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham)

Muslims honor and respect the Prophet Abraham (known in the Arabic language as Ibrahim). The Quran describes him as “a man of truth, a prophet” (Quran 19:41). Many aspects of Islamic worship, including pilgrimage and prayer, recognize and honor the importance of the life and teachings of this great prophet.

The Quran sums up the view of the Prophet Abraham among Muslims: “Who can be better in religion than one who submits his whole self to Allah, does good, and follows the way of Abraham the true in Faith? For Allah did take Abraham for a friend” (Quran 4:125).

Father of Monotheism:

Abraham was father of other prophets (Ishmail and Isaac) and the grandfather of Prophet Jacob. He is also one of the ancestors of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). Abraham is recognized as a great prophet among believers in the monotheistic faiths, such as Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.The Quran repeatedly describes the Prophet Abraham as a man who believed in One True God, and was a righteous example for us all to follow:

“Abraham was not a Jew nor yet a Christian; but he was true in Faith, and bowed his will to Allah (which is Islam), and he joined not gods with Allah” (Quran 3:67).Say: “(Allah) speaketh the Truth: follow the religion of Abraham, the sane in faith; he was not of the Pagans” (Quran 3:95).

Say: “Verily, my Lord hath guided me to a way that is straight,- a religion of right,- the path (trod) by Abraham the true in Faith, and he (certainly) joined not gods with Allah” (Quran 6:161).

“Abraham was indeed a model, devoutly obedient to Allah, (and) true in Faith, and he joined not gods with Allah. He showed his gratitude for the favours of Allah, who chose him, and guided him to a Straight Way. And We gave him Good in this world, and he will be, in the Hereafter, in the ranks of the Righteous. So We have taught thee the inspired (Message), “Follow the ways of Abraham the True in Faith, and he joined not gods with Allah” (Quran 16:120-123).

Family and Community:

Aazar, the father of Prophet Abraham, was a well-known idol sculptor among the people of Babylon. From a young age, Abraham recognized that the wood and stone “toys” that his father sculpted were not worthy of worship. As he grew older, he contemplated the natural world such as the stars, moon, and sun. He realized that there must be only One God. He was chosen as a Prophet and dedicated himself to the worship of One God, Allah.Abraham questioned his father and community about why they worship objects that cannot hear, see, or benefit people in any way. However, the people were not accepting of his message, and Abraham was finally driven from Babylon.

Abraham and his wife, Sarah, traveled through Syria, Palestine, and then on to Egypt. According to the Quran, Sarah had been unable to have children, so Sarah proposed that Abraham marry her servant, Hajar. Hajar gave birth to Ismail (Ishmail), who Muslims believe was Abraham’s first-born son. Abraham took Hajar and Ismail to the Arabian Peninsula. Later, Allah also blessed Sarah with a son, whom they named Ishaq (Isaac).

Islamic Pilgrimage:

Many of the rites of Islamic pilgrimage (Hajj) refer back directly to Abraham and his life:In the Arabian Peninsula, Abraham, Hajar, and their infant son Ismail found themselves in a barren valley with no trees or water. Hajar was desperate to find water for her child, and ran repeatedly between two hillsides in her search. At last, a spring emerged and she was able to quench their thirst. This spring, called Zamzam, still runs today in Makkah, Saudi Arabia. During the Hajj pilgrimage, Muslims reenact Hajar’s search for water when they pace several times between the hills of Safa and Marwa.

As Ismail grew up, he was also strong in faith. Allah tested their faith by commanding that Abraham sacrifice his beloved son. Ismail was willing, but before they followed through, Allah announced that the “vision” had been completed and Abraham was allowed to sacrifice a ram instead. This willingness to sacrifice is honored and celebrated during Eid Al-Adha at the end of the Hajj pilgrimage.

The Ka’aba itself is believed to have been re-built by Abraham and Ismail. There is a spot just next to the Ka’aba, called the Station of Abraham, which marks where Abraham is believed to have stood while erecting the stones to raise the wall. As Muslims make tawaf (walking around the Ka’aba seven times), they begin counting their rounds from that spot.

Islamic Prayer:

“Salam (peace) be upon Abraham!” God says in the Quran (37:109).Muslims close each of the daily prayers with a du’a (supplication), asking Allah to bless Abraham and his family as follows: “Oh Allah, send prayers upon Muhammad, and the followers of Muhammad, just as You sent prayers upon Abraham and the followers of Abraham. Verily, You are full of praise and majesty. Oh Allah, send blessings upon Muhammad, and upon the family of Muhammad, just as You sent blessings upon Abraham, and upon the family of Abraham. Verily, You are full of praise and majesty.”

More From the Qur’an:

On His Family and Community

“Lo! Abraham said to his father Azar: “Takest thou idols for gods? For I see thee and thy people in manifest error.” So also did We show Abraham the power and the laws of the heavens and the earth, that he might (with understanding) have certitude…. His people disputed with him.(Quran 6:74-80)

On Makkah

“The first House (of worship) appointed for men was that at Bakka (Makkah): Full of blessing and of guidance for all kinds of beings. In it are Signs Manifest; (for example), the Station of Abraham; whoever enters it attains security; Pilgrimage thereto is a duty men owe to Allah,- those who can afford the journey; but if any deny faith, Allah stands not in need of any of His creatures.” (Quran 3:96-97)

On Pilgrimage

“Behold! We gave the site, to Abraham, of the (Sacred) House, (saying): “Associate not anything (in worship) with Me; and sanctify My House for those who compass it round, or stand up, or bow, or prostrate themselves (therein in prayer). And proclaim the Pilgrimage among men: they will come to thee on foot and (mounted) on every kind of camel, lean on account of journeys through deep and distant mountain highways; that they may witness the benefits (provided) for them, and celebrate the name of Allah, through the Days appointed, over the cattle which He has provided for them (for sacrifice): then eat ye thereof and feed the distressed ones in want. Then let them complete the rites prescribed for them, perform their vows, and (again) circumambulate the Ancient House.” (Quran 22:26-29)”Remember We made the House a place of assembly for men and a place of safety; and take ye the station of Abraham as a place of prayer; and We covenanted with Abraham and Isma’il, that they should sanctify My House for those who compass it round, or use it as a retreat, or bow, or prostrate themselves (therein in prayer). And remember Abraham and Isma’il raised the foundations of the House (With this prayer): “Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us: For Thou art the All-Hearing, the All-knowing. Our Lord! make of us Muslims, bowing to Thy (Will), and of our progeny a people Muslim, bowing to Thy (will); and show us our place for the celebration of (due) rites; and turn unto us (in Mercy); for Thou art the Oft-Returning, Most Merciful.” (Quran 2:125-128)

On His Son’s Sacrifice

“Then, when (the son) reached (the age of) (serious) work with him, he said: “O my son! I see in vision that I offer thee in sacrifice: Now see what is thy view!” (The son) said: “O my father! Do as thou art commanded: thou will find me, if Allah so wills one practising Patience and Constancy!” So when they had both submitted their wills (to Allah., and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead (for sacrifice), We called out to him “O Abraham! Thou hast already fulfilled the vision!” – thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For this was obviously a trial- And We ransomed him with a momentous sacrifice: And We left (this blessing) for him among generations (to come) in later times: “Peace and salutation to Abraham!” Thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For he was one of our believing Servants. (Quran 37:102-111)

( / 14.12.2012)


Goed nieuws op het BDS-front. VoedselbankPLUS van de Stichting De Tussenvoorziening, de Utrechtse Voedselbank, heeft mij te kennen gegeven dat het niet meer gesponsord wil worden door het controversiële beveiligingsbedrijf G4Smeer informatie op dit weblog. Hoewel de Voedselbank haar sponsors gewoonlijk niet controleert op hun internationale activiteiten, heeft de organisatie na de verontrustende nieuwsberichten over het bedrijf besloten geen gebruik meer te maken van het aanbod van G4S, en zegt het de samenwerking met de Brits-Deense multinational op.

Ik ben enorm blij met het onbaatzuchtige besluit van de Voedselbank. Ze gaan daardoor wel een stukje sponsoring missen en ik vraag hierbij aan mijn lezers of ze misschien nog wat in de knip hebben zitten. Zo voor de kerst. De Voedselbank Utrecht helpt wekelijks rond de 550 gezinnen met een voedselpakket en met sociaal-juridische bijstand. Stichting de Tussenvoorziening is een Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling (ANBI) en heeft geen winstoogmerk. Neem voor het doen van donaties in de vorm van voedsel contact op met een van de uitgiftepunten of met het algemene nummer van VoedselbankPLUS Utrecht: 06-12232115, of klik hier voor het doen van financiële donaties.

Foto: Israëlische bezettingssoldaten bewaken gearresteerde Palestijnse kinderen op de Westelijke Jordaanoever.

Nog geen reactie van Jantje Beton, waarvan G4S de hoofdsponsor is. De samenwerkingsovereenkomst tussen Jantje Beton en G4S is in 2010 ondertekend door directeur Rob van Gaal van Jantje Beton en algemeen directeur Gert Askes van G4S Cash Solutions.

“Jantje Beton komt op voor de speelkansen van alle kinderen in Nederland. Als kinderen spelen hebben ze niet alleen plezier, ze doen ook allerlei ervaringen op die goed zijn voor hun ontwikkeling. Met name voor kinderen die door omstandigheden in de verdrukking dreigen te komen, is dat extra belangrijk.”(

→ VN persbericht: Children in solitary confinement: “Israel’s pattern of abuse is inhumane, cruel, degrading and unlawful” – UN expert

→ VN persbericht: “Boycott businesses that profit from Israeli settlements” – UN Special Rapporteur

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, Richard Falk, today called on the UN General Assembly and civil society to take action against Israeli and international businesses that are profiting from Israeli settlements.

Highlighting the activities of Caterpillar Incorporated (USA); Veolia Environment (France); G4S (United Kingdom); The Dexia Group (Belgium); Ahava (Israel); the Volvo Group (Sweden); the Riwal Holding Group (the Netherlands); Elbit Systems (Israel); Hewlett Packard (USA); Mehadrin (Israel); Motorola (USA); Assa Abloy (Sweden); and Cemex (Mexico), Mr. Falk noted that a wide range of Israeli and international businesses are involved in the establishment and maintenance of Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory.


Foto: G4S levert Jantje Beton cheque van 50.000 euro af bij Openbare Basisschool De Triangel in Weesp. Palestijnse kinderen kennen G4S alleen als een bedrijf dat ervoor zorgt dat ze ‘veilig’ (en geïsoleerd) opgesloten worden in Israëlische militaire (!) gevangenissen, dat hun bezetters beveiligt bij checkpoints en de Apartheidsmuur, en dat de illegale kolonisten beveiligt op het van hun ouders gestolen land.

→ Middle East Monitor (2010): Israeli Shin Bet electrocuted child prisoners to extract confessions

Het gevangenzetten van kinderen is een schending van
diverse internationale wetten. G4S helpt Israël daarbij.

Mocht u het ook van de gekke vinden dat Jantje Beton een samenwerking is aangegaan met G4S laat dat dan vooral horen:
Twitter: @jantjebetonline


An important report published by a group of British lawyers, funded by the Foreign Office, has highlighted the inhumane treatment of Palestinian child prisoners by Israel.


Israel Police arrest children aged 12 to 15 in night raids in Silwan, East Jerusalem (2010)
( / 14.12.2012)

British MP slams niqab ban on Muslims

British MP George Galloway has lashed out at the UK government’s new banning of the niqab.

British MP George Galloway has lashed out at the UK government’s new banning of the niqab.
British MP and founder of the Respect Party George Galloway has lashed out at the UK government’s new banning of the niqab, the full-faced covering veil worn by some Muslim women.

While at the British parliament, Galloway argued that the UK’s new regulations to ban Muslim women from wearing the niqab are an infringement on people’s rights in the country.

“Everyone understands the need to have proper security. But these rules seem a little heavy handed and confusing to me,” Galloway said.

There are around 2.5 million Muslims currently living in the UK, while many believe that the banning of the niqab represents the beginning of greater restrictions to be introduced in the country.

The new restrictions on the niqab have gone into place at Westminster Abbey and the two houses of parliament, the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

Under the new controversial rules, niqab-wearing Muslims will be obliged to remove their face-veil if they want to have a place in British society.

The niqab ban in Britain now has Muslims fearing that the government is following hard-line rules that were introduced in France on 11 April 2011, where it is illegal for Muslim women to wear face coverings in public.

( / 14.12.2012)

Lebanon camps rally for hunger strikers

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Palestinian refugees in Lebanon on Friday demonstrated in solidarity with prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails.

Ayman Sharawneh has been on hunger strike for 167 days and Samer al-Issawi has refused food for 136 days in Israel’s Ramle prison. Both men were rearrested after their release in Israel’s Oct. 2011 prisoner swap with Hamas.

The Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine held a sit-in at UNRWA offices in al-Badawi camp. Refugees from al-Bared camp joined the demonstration, as well as popular committee members and factional representatives.

“The prisoners’ friend committee calls for supporting Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, especially those on hunger strike,” said Gamal Skaf.

Skaf demanded an explanation of the whereabouts of his brother Yahya Skaf who disappeared in 1978. The family maintains that Yahya is in Israeli detention but Israel has said he was killed while carrying out an attack on Israelis.

The union for the right to return also participated in the demonstration. Its secretary-general Ahmad Mousa stressed the need to continue the struggle for an independent state of Palestine.

Palestinian Peoples Party leader Jalal Mansour called on the international community to secure the release of al-Issawi and Sharawneh and all political prisoners.

DFLP leader Abdullah Deib praised the determination of Palestinian prisoners and held Israel responsible for their lives.

Dieb said prisoners should be the highest priority of the Palestinian leadership and called for national reconciliation.

( / 14.12.2012)

Burgers eisen debat in Tweede Kamer over Israëlische muur

De Israëlische afscheidingsmuur bij Ramallah.

De Tweede Kamer moet waarschijnlijk een debat houden over de muur die Israël heeft gebouwd op de Westelijke Jordaanoever. Een burgerinitiatief met ruim 65.000 handtekeningen, dat de Kamer oproept tot het debat, wordt na het kerstreces in januari aangeboden aan de Kamer door oud-premier Dries van Agt.

De initiatiefnemers van ‘Sloop de Muur’ willen dat Israël de muur op Palestijns gebied afbreekt en de getroffenen schadeloos stelt. Het Internationaal Gerechtshof in Den Haag heeft de bouw van de 700 kilometer lange muur in 2004 veroordeeld.

Met het burgerinitiatief kunnen burgers een onderwerp op de agenda zetten van de Kamer. Daarvoor zijn 40.000 handtekeningen nodig.

( / 14.12.2012)

Patriot missiles warning to Syria’s al-Assad

NATO missiles to defend Turkey from SyriaTurkey Flag

The United States and Germany are sending Patriot missiles and troops to the Turkish border, a warning to Syria’s besieged President Bashar al-Assad.

The surface-to-air interceptors would be “dealing with threats that come out of Syria,” said U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. Threats would include Syrian strikes inside Turkey and fighting between the government and rebels that extends into Turkey.

Errant Syrian artillery shells struck the Turkish border town of Akcakale and killed five Turkish civilians in October.

Despite the prospect of U.S. missiles on Al-Assad’s doorstep and a weakening regime, U.S. intelligence officials said the Syrian leader is showing no signs of giving up.

The deployment includes two Patriot missile batteries, used solely for defensive purposes, and 400 U.S. troops to operate them.

The United States and NATO hope to have them in place by the second week in January, and a military advance team is going in in the next several days, CNN has learned.

The moves come a week after NATO foreign ministers approved the deployment of Patriots to protect Turkey against any threats from al-Assad’s regime, rapidly weakening by rebel advances.

Also Friday, the German parliament approved the deployment of German Patriot anti-aircraft missiles to Turkey, with 461 Bundestag deputies voting in favor of the deployment, 86 against and eight abstentions.

The Netherlands have shown willingness to add Patriot batteries, NATO said Friday, to defend Turkey and “de-escalate the crisis on NATO’s southeastern border.”

Patriots are constructed to take out threats from warplanes and tactical ballistic missiles to unmanned aircraft by impacting with them in midair, according to Raytheon Co., which builds them. The U.S. military used to take out Scud missiles during the Iraq war.

The United States has accused Damascus of launching Scud-type artillery from the capital at rebels in the country’s north. One Washington official said missiles came close to the border of Turkey, a NATO member and staunch U.S. ally.

Syria’s government called the accusations “untrue rumors” Friday, according to state news agency SANA. Damascus accused Turkey and its partners of instigating rumors to make the government look bad internationally.

NATO has also said it detected what appeared to be ballistic missile launches within Syria and condemned their possible use as “utter disregard for the lives of the Syrian people.”

Turkey and NATO insist the Patriot system would be used only for defense.

Al-Assad is ‘weakening’

Al-Assad’s departure is the dream of his opponents.

U.S. officials said the Syrian president’s control is crumbling at an accelerating pace

“It’s at its lowest point yet,” said one senior US official with direct knowledge of the latest assessments. U.S. intelligence believes the decline has accelerated in recent weeks. “The trend is moving more rapidly than it has in the past.”

The officials agreed to talk on the condition their names not be used because they were not authorized to discuss the information with the media.

U.S. officials said they believe al-Assad is still controlling some of his military forces and commanders. He and his top advisers are showing less ability to maintain control than they did six to eight months ago.

“There has been a strongly downward steady progression” in al-Assad’s grip on power,” said the senior U.S. official

The United States believes “the wall around him is slowly coming down,” said the senior official of the strong inner circle around the Syrian president. “We are saying there are indicators there is weakening around Assad.”

But there is no indication al-Assad is making plans to step down, the senior official and other administration officials said.

A second official said al-Assad and his commanders appear to be fully aware the opposition has made significant military gains in recent weeks and that al-Assad “is not out of it” in his understanding of the current situation.

Even with the rebel advances, loyalists in the Syrian military appear to be holding firm.

Much of the anti-Assad fighting force includes military defectors. There are signs that military defections at the commander level are slowing though the U.S. analysts are not sure why, the second U.S. official said.

“There is still regime control over the military despite the fact they recognize the opposition force has improved,” said the second U.S. official said.

Syrian rebels, government battle

The Syrian civil war started in March 2011 when a government crackdown on civilian demonstrators morphed into a fight between the regime and rebels.

The conflict has seized the attention of world powers for months because of the relentless brutality and the specter of the Syrian government mulling the use of chemical weapons.

The war has a proxy element, with Sunni countries such as Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia backing the rebels and Shiite Iran backing the Alawite regime. The Alawite faith is an offshoot of Shiism.

More than 40,000 people have died in the war. The United Nations said on Friday that many Syrians will continue to be killed and maimed after the war ends because of deadly explosives placed in residential areas across the country.

The violence continued Friday, with at least 32 deaths recorded by the opposition Local Coordination Committees said.

( / 14.12.2012)