Israeli Fascist Brutality

palestinian child israeli soldier

Let’s not mince words. Israel is a fascist police state, masquerading as a democracy. How when state terror is official policy, when soldiers, police and Zionist zealots brutalize and murder Palestinians unaccountably, when institutionalized apartheid exceeds the worst of South Africa’s regime.

Palestine is a free-fire zone, unsafe to live in for Arabs. Israeli security forces rampage with impunity, licensed to kill at their discretion, taking full advantage, rewarded for shocking brutality.

In the last five days alone, three Palestinian youths were gunned down in cold blood, two aged 13. Another 500 were injured, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS).

It declared a state of emergency in the West Bank and East Jerusalem following days of Israeli violence, in Occupied Palestine an endless pogrom of racist hate, violence, mass arrests and cold-blooded murders.

PRCS activated its Al-Bireh HQ central Operations Room- its “staff, teams and volunteers put on standby.” It said Israeli forces attacked its personnel, ambulances and other vehicles 14 times in the past 72 hours while they tried aiding wounded Palestinians – preventing them from providing humanitarian care.

Ambulance crew members were beaten and wounded. A PRCS statement condemned Israeli violence, saying it “constitute(s) a blatant violation of key IHL (international humanitarian law) provisions” – mainly Fourth Geneva, requiring the protection of civilians in time of war.

Article 2 states “the present Convention shall apply to all cases of declared war or of any other armed conflict which may arise between two or more of the High Contracting Parties, even if the state of war is not recognized by one of them.”

The Convention shall also apply to all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party, even if the said occupation meets with no armed resistance.

Fourth Geneva protects all personnel involved in aiding, transporting and treating wounded or sick individuals.

Israel enforces vicious occupation harshness, waging war on an entire population. Since last week, dozens of Palestinians were shot with live fire. Numerous others were physically assaulted.

Tensions were high following Israeli soldiers and police desecrating the Al-Aqsa Mosque (Islam’s third holiest site) multiple times in recent days – damaging it deliberately, brutalizing peaceful worshipers, making numerous arrests.

Things spun out-of-control following the killing of four Israelis. In just societies, police conduct investigations without brutalizing entire communities. Israel imposes collective punishment. Horrific Palestinian suffering follows.

A PLO statement said Israel “is deliberately creating a situation of violence and instability that threatens to spiral out-of-control.”

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) accused Israel of crimes of excessive force and extreme brutality – carried out by soldiers, police and lunatic settlers.

Abused Palestinians respond justifiably to provocative Israeli tear gas, rubber bullets, live fire, beatings and other forms of abuse, using stones and empty bottles – hardly a fair fight.

PCHR said over 170 Palestinians wounded or killed by “live bullets and shrapnel in Jerusalem.” Israeli collective punishment policy willfully targets defenseless civilians.

World leaders able stop these horrors do nothing more than urge both sides to show restraint – effectively condoning Israeli violence, hate crimes, an appalling disregard for Palestinian rights, safety and welfare.

Netanyahu is a fascist thug, calling legitimate Palestinian resistance terrorism, vowing no letup in extreme police state violence.

“(J)ust as we’ve smashed previous waves of terrorism, we will also smash this wave of terrorism,” he blustered.

He convened a Monday evening security cabinet meeting to discuss ways to escalate violence against defenseless Palestinians. He ordered thousands more soldiers and police as shock troops throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Zionist zealots demanded increased toughness, including fascist cabinet ministers. Extremist tourism minister Yariv Levin said “(t)hose who think that terror can defeat the spirit of the nation of Israel and can stop us implementing our historical rights in every part of the land of Israel, should see us here today and understand that we will not be beaten.”

Social affairs minister Haim Katz urged accelerated settlement construction. “The prime minister is the only one who can defeat terrorism and build the land of Israel, and we expect him to do so,” he said.

He called for tougher penalties on parents of children arrested for stone-throwing. PLO member Hanan Ashrawi said “who think that terror can defeat the spirit of the nation of Israel and can stop us implementing our historical rights in every part of the land of Israel, should see us here today and understand that we will not be beaten.”

Palestinians want rights everyone deserves. Israel wants endless violence and instability, blaming Palestinians for its high crimes, maintaining occupation harshness in response, including cold-blooded murder – with full US support and encouragement.

(Source / 07.10.2015)

Tunisia looks to welcome refugees, migrants with new asylum law

Undocumented migrants disembark in Ben Guerdane, Tunisia, after being rescued by Tunisia’s naval forces in a failed attempt to cross into Italy from neighboring Libya, June 10, 2015

TUNIS, Tunisia — While a lot of focus in the recent migration debate has been on Europe, many of the southern Mediterranean countries are equally struggling with the situation. Tunisia, which is next to Libya, is increasingly trying to deal with, and prepare for, the influx of people.

“God Bless Tunisia,” said “Annie,” a Nigerian who is too afraid to reveal her real name. She added, “And God punish Libya!” Annie was smuggled through Libya via Niger, eventually ending up in the Libyan coastal city of Zuwara, which has become a center for human trafficking, only 60 kilometers (37 miles) from the Tunisian border. A majority of the asylum seekers arriving at the Tunisian borders enter, often unintentionally, via boats after being rescued at sea during their perilous journey from Libya. Upon arrival, each person’s status is assessed in order to determine whether the person is a refugee, which means a person running from persecution or conflict, or a migrant, i.e., someone leaving their home country in search for better economic opportunities. Tunisia is primarily a transit country. Most people arriving here are not aiming to stay but to continue to Europe. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) September 2015 fact sheet, there are currently around 928 registered refugees and asylum seekers in Tunisia, primarily from Syria.

Until a person’s status has been determined, the person is considered an asylum seeker. However, as Tunisia does not yet have an asylum law in place, the UNHCR assists Tunisian authorities in the refugee status determination process. Each person’s background is documented before determining their legal status. Their story is scrutinized, and their papers, if there are any, are assessed before a final verdict is made. People identified as refugees are protected by the 1951 Refugee Convention, which not only defines who is a refugee, but also states their rights and the obligation of the host country. However, the refugee status does not include residency in Tunisia, which is only authorized by the Tunisian Interior Ministry. Without a residency card, it is difficult for a refugee, often also without identification cards, to receive a work permit in a country already struggling with high unemployment rates. “We are trying to have a creative approach to the work situation for refugees,” said Nabil Benbekhti, senior protection officer at UNHCR. Today, most refugees work in the informal sector, but there are livelihood programs that aim to make refugees reach self-sufficiency by offering tailored training curriculum. There is also a startup that is in the process of hiring asylum seekers and refugees for maintenance work in domains such as gardening, plumbing or cleaning. Some initiatives have also included providing Syrian families with goats in order for them to produce cheese and potentially become self-sustaining.

Beside refugees, there are also migrants looking for better opportunities among the people rescued at sea. Annie is one of the migrants saved this summer and is one of the ones who decided to return to Nigeria. Despite the lack of opportunities, she would like to go back home to her village, even though it would mean she would likely return to her previous job, braiding women’s hair. “We assist the people who wish to return back home,” said Lorena Lando, chief of mission at the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Through the relevant embassy, a travel document is secured and migrants can safely return home with the help of IOM. About half decide to return home, while the other half, the ones not able or willing to return home, either try to stay in Tunisia, with an illegal status, or try returning to Libya for another attempt at crossing the sea.

According to the September 2015 UNHCR fact sheet, seven boats, with around 900 passengers, have been rescued at sea outside the Tunisian coast during the first six months of 2015. Of them, 147 claimed asylum. Most of the boats attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea depart from Libya. Due to the country’s civil war, the smugglers can operate fairly freely. According to Lando, about 80% of the migrants who risk their lives by boarding the boats from the Libyan shores and arrive in Tunisia are looking for better economic opportunities, while the rest are refugees from Eritrea or Somalia or war-torn Syria. (The broader statistics of departures from Libya suggest a lower figure, where about 50% are migrants and 50% are refugees.) Their goal is Europe, but often due to engine breakdown or boats not seaworthy, they end up outside the southern Tunisian coastline, where some are saved by the Tunisian coast guard. That is what happened to Annie. She was saved after four days at sea. Now she is waiting to return to Nigeria.

Tunisia has seen a clear shift in its migration. Before 2011, there were less than 100 refugees arriving, then primarily from Algeria, Western African countries including the Ivory Coast or Palestinians. However, the Libyan civil war, which began in 2011, changed the situation. What happens in Libya will have a direct effect on Tunisia, explained Lando. Most foreigners in Tunisia are Libyans. On arrival they can stay for three months. However, in order to work, they need to apply at the Interior Ministry for a work permit. The exact number of Libyans in Tunisia is difficult to estimate but is believed to be roughly 300,000, said Lando.

With no end in sight for the Libyan civil war, Tunisia is in dire need of asylum legislation. Since 2011, the UNHCR has been assisting the small Mediterranean country with training and technical assistance ahead of the drafting of an asylum law. Since 2012, the two draft texts have been prepared and are ready to be approved by parliament. “An asylum law will be adopted during the year of 2016,” said Belgacem Sabri, secretary of state in charge of migration affairs and social integration. When enacted, the refugee status process will become the responsibility of the Tunisian authorities and a national protection system will be put in place. “More and more, the need for a protection system is reaffirmed, and this is our aim, to provide Tunisia with a system that is adapted to its capacity and needs,” said Benbekhti. “Tunisia has a role to play in the region in offering a protection space.”

A national five-year migration development strategy includes protecting migrants’ rights and enhancing the contribution of migration to socio-economic development on a local, regional and national level. The strategy is to involve diasporas in the social, economic and political development of the country, said Sabri. Legislation on migration dates back to 1968 and needs to be amended to meet today’s dynamics. “Tunisia needs to prepare long term for a larger influx of migrants,” said Lando. Mobility is a never-ending process, and it is important to see the positive impact migration can have and to research its underlying socio-economic factors, she added. Tunisia, due to its democratic transition and geographical location, can increasingly turn into a destination country, which would require long-term measures from the Tunisian government, concluded Lando.

(Source / 07.10.2015)

Hoe de Volkskrant ons belazert

By Engelbert Luitsz                           (www.alexandrina.nl/?p=4170)

“You can’t be neutral on a moving train.”
Howard Zinn

385055_the-Third-Intifada

Een redactioneel stuk in de Volkskrant van gisteren laat goed zien hoe de Nederlandse krantenlezer wordt beduveld (Abbas probeert escalatie met Israël te voorkomen). Het geweld in Palestina komt voor het overgrote deel van de kant van de Israëlische regering, met steun van gewelddadige kolonisten. De achtergrond van 67 jaar landroof en bezetting wordt door de VK niet eens genoemd.

Maar zelfs als we ons beperken tot het huidige geweld kun je niet om de gebeurtenissen van vorig jaar heen. De verdwijning van drie joodse kolonisten op de Westelijke Jordaanoever vormde het excuus voor een maand van absolute terreur van Israëlische kant, gevolgd door een nietsontziende aanval op de Gazastrook (op geen enkele wijze verbonden met de Westelijke Jordaanoever, ik zeg het nog maar even).

De achterliggende motivatie voor deze aanpak was het feit dat er een verzoening dreigde tussen Fatah en Hamas. Premier Netanyahu had de interne verdeeldheid onder de Palestijnen altijd aangegrepen als excuus en nu dreigde hij door de mand te vallen. De verdeel-en-heerspolitiek van de zionisten werd weer eens pijnlijk duidelijk.

Sinds vorig jaar is Israël gewoon doorgegaan met het bestoken van de Gazastrook en het verder indammen van de rechten van Palestijnen in Oost-Jeruzalem en op de Westelijke Jordaanoever en het versterken van de wurggreep op de Gazastrook. Boeren, vissers en ongewapende demonstranten worden onder vuur genomen. Sinds het einde van de aanval in augustus vorig jaar heeft Israël zo’n 700 keer het bestand geschonden en dat is exclusief de 29 aanvallen met vliegtuigen als reactie op raketjes. Zoals een Palestijnse man eerder dit jaar al opmerkte is Israël nooit gestopt met het beschieten van de Gazastrook. Onze media worden kennelijk pas wakker als er eindelijk iets teruggedaan wordt van Palestijnse kant. Zo ook de Volkskrant weer.

Het begint al met de suggestie dat het gevaar van Palestijnse kant komt. Het is Abbas die probeert een geweldsescalatie te voorkomen. Dat Israël precies het tegenovergestelde doet wordt niet vermeld.

Duizenden Israëliërs protesteerden maandagavond bij de residentie van premier Netanyahu, zij eisen een hard optreden tegen het Palestijnse geweld van de afgelopen dagen.

Het gaat hier om een groep van de meest extremistische joden in Israël. Alsof een demonstratie van de PVV in een buitenlandse krant terecht zou komen als “duizenden Nederlanders protesteerden…”. Klakkeloos neemt de VK “het Palestijnse geweld” over, alsof het van één kant komt. Ook Netanyahu’s woorden over “terroristen en andere provocateurs” worden zonder enige schaamte overgenomen. En dan zijn er uiteraard weer huizen gesloopt, niet van de “terroristen“, maar van hun familie. Dat is een collectieve straf en dat is onrechtmatig. De VK: “met het slopen van hun huizen hoopt Israël een extra signaal af te geven.” Hoe weten ze daar bij de redactie wat “Israël hoopt“? En wat verstaan ze onder “een extra signaal“?

Ze gaan daar bij de VK zeker niet over een nacht ijs. “De spanningen tussen de Israëli’s en Palestijnen lopen al langer op.” wordt ons verteld. Schokkend! Alsof de alwetende geest van Hans Jansen daar over de redactie waart.

Onder het kopje Spanningen begint het uiteraard met het doodschieten van een Israëlisch echtpaar, vorige week donderdag. Het woord “echtpaar”, zonder verdere kwalificatie is al misleidend. Uiteraard was het een brute moord, maar dit waren vanuit Palestijns perspectief geen onschuldige slachtoffers. Ze behoorden tot de harde kern van de kolonistenbeweging.

Deze Henkins behoorden tot een religieus-nationalistische nederzetting (Neria), waarvan veel bewoners zijn opgeleid op de Mercaz haRav yeshiva, als het ware de ”bron” van de harde (Gush Emunim) kern van de kolonisten. (Abu Pessoptimist)

Wanneer Palestijnen met dergelijke gedrag en denkbeelden vermoord zouden zijn, zou men het in de Israëlische pers niet hebben over een “echtpaar”, doch over “terroristen”.

De redactie van de VK ziet dus geen verband met de moorden op de doofstomme Ahmad Khatatbeh of de studente Hadeel al-Hashlamun een week eerder (2 van de meer dan 25 doden door Israëlische militairen/politie dit jaar, dus buiten de slachtoffers van de terreur van kolonisten).

De wijze van formuleren spreekt ook boekdelen. Kijk hier eens naar. Als het om Palestijnse daders gaat is er geen twijfel mogelijk:

  • Donderdag schoten twee Palestijnen een Israëlisch echtpaar dood
  • Twee dagen later doodde een Palestijnse man

Gaat het om Palestijnse slachtoffers dan is men een stuk voorzichtiger:

  • Bij gevechten tussen Palestijnen en het Israëlische leger op de bezette Westelijke Jordaanoever is maandag volgens een Palestijnse arts een 13-jarige jongen om het leven gekomen
  • Op zondag kwam een 18-jarige Palestijn om het leven bij schermutselingen

Ja, u leest het goed: twee keer “om het leven gekomen“; en “volgens een Palestijnse arts“. De VK-redactie is dus allesbehalve zeker dat het echt waar is.

De diepere oorzaak

De directe oorzaken zijn uiteraard de onhoudbare onderdrukking van de gehele Palestijnse bevolking en de openlijke steun die de racistische en gewelddadige elementen in de Israëlische maatschappij krijgen van de regering. Maar waarom gedraagt men zich zo? Omdat ze zo worden opgevoed is wat je overal hoort en leest. De Israëlische academica Nurit Peled schreef er ooit een indrukwekkend boek over. Op de website Academia is een wetenschappelijk artikel van haar te lezen waaruit blijkt dat we helemaal niet verbaasd moeten zijn over wat er het afgelopen jaar gebeurd is, of over wat we nu meemaken.

In haar eigen woorden:

Het artikel betoogt dat de standaard schoolboeken in Israël impliciet het vermoorden van Palestijnen legitimeren als een efficiënt instrument om een joodse staat met een joodse meerderheid te verzekeren.

En:

Israëlische studenten beginnen aan hun dienstplicht in de overtuiging dat empathie aan ras gerelateerd is en geen plek heeft in de relatie tussen hen en hun buren die aan hun genade zijn overgeleverd.

kinderboek_israel

Hoezeer deze blinde vlek voor alles wat niet tot de eigen stam behoort kan leiden tot een ontkenning van de realiteit, blijkt ook uit een Israëlisch kinderboek waarin de massamoord op de Palestijnen van vorig jaar wordt getransformeerd tot een verhaaltje over soldaten die een paar poesjes weten te redden in de Gazastrook. Richard Silverstein merkt op dat Palestijnen in het hele verhaal niet voorkomen, alsof de poesjes geen eerdere eigenaren hadden.

De vreugdevolle lynchpartijen

Ik zou er heel wat voor over hebben om beelden te zien van de groep Israëlische extremisten terwijl die vorig jaar de 16-jarige Mohammed Abu Khdeir levend verbrandden. De manier waarop de familie van Mohammed werd behandeld, opgepakt door de politie, bespuugd door de kolonisten, geeft wel een indicatie van hoe men het “vernietigen van de vijand” ervaart. Maar beelden zijn schaars. Israël doet er alles aan getuigenissen te laten verdwijnen. Camera’s worden vernield, journalisten vermoord, getuigen met de dood bedreigd of verbannen.

Deze week kregen we echter bij hoge uitzondering een kijkje in de keuken. Een groep Israëlische jongeren achtervolgt een Palestijnse jongen, al schreeuwend dat hij een terrorist is en gedood moet worden. De politie doet keurig wat ze zeggen en executeert de 19-jarige Fadi Samir Alloun. Het werd door verschillende mensen op video vastgelegd, dus hier kan men niet snel nog even ergens een mes neerleggen om een heel ander verhaal te verzinnen. Het is duidelijk dat de meute geniet van de moord en het bekende “Dood aan de Arabieren” klinkt ook hier weer vol overtuiging (Death-chanting Israeli mob rejoices as Palestinian teen is executed).

Tijd voor een echte krant

Het is deze context die zo pijnlijk afwezig is in de Volkskrant.Niet dat andere kranten veel beter zijn, en de NOS lijkt haar informatie rechtstreeks van het Israëlische ministerie van Propaganda te betrekken, maar de Volkskrant had ooit een imago van “links” en “kritisch”. Het verlies van serieuze journalistiek is extra pijnlijk wanneer het om zulke belangrijke zaken als Palestina gaat. Wat de redactie hier laat zien heeft niets met neutraliteit te maken: het is een duidelijke keuze voor de versie van de onderdrukker zelf.

Khoja: Russian Invasion of Syria Destabilizes the Region and Threaten its Security

President Khoja said that the Russian invasion of Syria will destabilize the region and threaten its security, adding that the Russians are not killing Syrian civilians but also the plan of the UN envoy Staffan de Mestura and all chances of reaching a political solution.

Khoja stressed the difficulty of reaching a political settlement in light of the continued Russian and Iranian-Syrian invasion of Syria.

“Assad’s regime was defeated and withdrew from the country’s north and south before handing over those areas to ISIS, then it sought help from the Iranian regime but they were also defeated by the Syrian rebels.

“With the rapid collapse of regime forces, Assad called for the Russian occupiers, and he barely controls one-sixth of Syria’s territory.” Khoja added.

“We are working to secure the necessary military support to all rebel factions,” adding that “the Syrian Coalition is making considerable efforts in this regard.”

(Source: Syrian Coalition + Al-Jazeera / 07.10.2015)

Footage shows Israeli undercover agent shooting Palestinian youth at point blank range

Footage released of Wednesday’s clashes in Al Bireh show an undercover Israeli agent shooting a young Palestinian boy in the leg at point blank range, after he had been arrested by Israeli forces at a protest next to the Beit El settlement and DCO checkpoint.

According to an AFP reporter on the scene, a group of Israeli agents infiltrated the crowd and threw rocks at Israeli soldiers along with the protesters. The Israeli agents then turned on the crowd, opening fire and attacking some of the protesters.

One young Palestinian boy was struck in the back of the head with live ammunition.

A video which appears on the Quds News Network Facebook page, shows Israeli officers dressed in plainclothes, shooting into the crowd of protesters.

After capturing one of the protesters, the undercover officers begin to violently attack the young boy. One of the officers can be seen holding a handgun to the boy’s leg and firing it at point blank range.

Armed Israeli soldiers soon join the undercover officers in kicking the boy as he lies on the ground.

The soldiers then drag the boy across the ground towards a parked army vehicle.

Three Palestinian youths were shot with live ammunition and arrested by Israeli soldiers during the clashes in Al Bireh. One is reported to be in a critical condition.

At 0:15 an Israeli undercover agent is seen shooting a Palestinian youth at point blank range

Israeli soldiers placed a tourniquet above the bullet wound of the Palestinian boy they shot at point blank range

(Source / 07.10.2015)  

One Palestinian killed, 288 wounded in Israeli attacks

At least, 11 of the wounded are suffering serious conditions

Israeli occupation forces killed on Wednesday two Palestinians, wounded at least 288 others, arrested 31 in West Bank and Jerusalem.

Eyewitnesses said that the two men were handcuffed near to the Israeli occupation jeeps and left bleeding on the ground for about one hour

Days of Palestine, West Bank/Jerusalem –Israeli occupation forces killed on Wednesday two Palestinians, wounded at least 288 others, arrested 31 in West Bank and Jerusalem.

Israeli occupation forces shot dead one Palestinian man in Ramat Gan, near Tel Aviv after. Israeli occupation forces claimed that he attempted to stab Israeli Jews.

The Palestinian was identified as Amjad al-Jundi, 20, from the West Bank city of Al-Khalil. His family members said that he left his home heading to work.

One Palestinian, who work in the same area, spoke on condition of anonymity to Days of Palestine, said that two Israelis assaulted Al-Jundi. “When he wanted to prevent the Israelis beating him, one of them raised a pistol and shot him,” he added.

Meanwhile, Palestinian Red Crescent sources said that the number of the Palestinians wounded across the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem since the morning was 288, including 11 in serious conditions.

In the West Bank city of Beit Eil, the Israeli occupation forces, supported by undercover forces, wounded two Palestinians, beat them, pulled them and arrested them.

Eyewitnesses said that the two men were handcuffed near to the Israeli occupation jeeps and left bleeding on the ground for about one hour.

Palestinian sources said that the Israeli occupation forces arrested today 31 Palestinians from different areas in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem.

The Israeli occupation forces also demolished four Palestinian houses for the families of the Palestinians reported to have attempted to kill Israelis.

Among them, the house of the Palestinian lady Shorouq Dwidat from Jerusalem’s Old City, who was shot by an Israeli settler after refusing to remove her scarf.

(Source / 07.10.2015)

Israeli Forces Shoot, Kidnap Students During Demonstration

At least three were seriously injured and, then, kidnapped by soldiers and undercover special agents (Musta’ribeen) during a protest that was headed towards the Beit Eil military checkpoint, east of Ramallah, on Wednesday afternoon.

Speciale agenten

A group of special agents open fire on protesters, alongside military

Sources said, according to the PNN, that the armed and masked agents opened fire, alongside the military, on the protesters. The demonstration was launched from Birzeit University near Ramallah, and was headed towards the Beit El military checkpoint, north Ramallah.

One of the three wounded was shot in the head, and dragged down by the soldiers. There are unconfirmed reports on his death, as his injury is highly critical.

(Source / 07.10.2015)

 

 

Clashes break out across West Bank after Netanyahu declares ‘an all-out war’

Palestinian journalist Salah Zayyad, 35, recuperates in a Ramallah hospital after Israeli forces shot him in the abdomen at a demonstration near Qalandia checkpoint in the West Bank, October 6, 2015. (Photo: Allison Deger)

Palestinian journalist Salah Zayyad, 35, recuperates in a Ramallah hospital after Israeli forces shot him in the abdomen at a demonstration near Qalandia checkpoint in the West Bank, October 6, 2015

Scores of Palestinians were injured in clashes across the West Bank and more than 200 were arrested in Jerusalem, after Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu announced Sunday he is “running an all-out war against Palestinian terrorism.”

Palestinians protested today in a “day of rage,” after a string of Palestinian attacks on Israeli citizens in the past week and Israeli incursions into the West Bank and Jerusalem—including the demolition of two homes overnight Monday and the killings of three Palestinian youths in the preceding 24 hours.

During the West Bank’s main demonstration outside Ramallah, Israeli fire injured 13, six of them from live rounds, including Salah Zayyad, 35, a Palestinian journalist who was shot in the abdomen. Palestinian demonstrators threw rocks at security forces.

In Bethlehem, 27 were treated for tear gas inhalation, seven for injuries from rubber bullets, including two who are in critical condition for shots fired at the head. Another seven were hurt in a traffic accident after losing visibility while driving near the clash, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society.

The march followed a funeral for Abdel-Rahman Abeidallah, 13, who was shot in the heart during a demonstration yesterday. Abeidallah was the third Palestinian killed by Israeli forces on Sunday and Monday.

Before daybreak Israeli forces demolished the East Jerusalem homes of Ghassan Abu Jamal, 32, and Muhammed el-Ja’abis, 23, two Palestinians from the Jabal Mukaber neighborhood who were implicated in the killings of Israelis in 2014. Abu Jamal and his cousin Uday Abu Jamal, 22, stabbed to death five in a bloody attack on a north Jerusalem synagogue. El-Ja’abis was accused of killing an Israeli with a bulldozer in Jerusalem and was shot dead on the scene by security forces. His family says that it was not an intentional act, that he lost control of the tractor.

Punitive home demolitions are illegal under international law as a form of collective punishment. While Israel leveled houses as punishment throughout the second Intifada, a moratorium on the practice was in place at the close of the uprising until mid-2014.

Clashes ensued across Jerusalem and Israeli Police Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said over social media that more than 250 were arrested Tuesday in the holy city.

In the afternoon Netanyahu visited the site where two Israelis were killed in a stabbing attack in Jerusalem’s Old City Saturday night, and the prime minister again endorsed harsher policing and increased surveillance. Netanyahu promised “a very serious plan in which we will deploy ground and aerial cameras on all roads in Judea and Samaria [the West Bank], with command and control centers, communication centers and fast response times,” adding the measures were “a very, very important element in restoring security.”

The statement echoed remarks from Netanyahu made last night where he said, “The police are going deeply into the Arab neighborhoods, which has not been done in the past. We will demolish terrorists’ homes.”

Secretary-General of the PLO Saeb Erekat said, “Mr. Netanyahu’s announcement is a reminder to the international community of the urgent need for international intervention to protect the occupied Palestinian people from relentless attack by the Israeli military forces and terrorist settlers.” Erekat has been issuing statements in recent weeks appealing for United Nations and NATO protection forces.

“Netanyahu and his right-wing extremist government cannot and will not break the will of our people to fulfill our inalienable rights in an independent State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital,” Erekat continued.

Meanwhile the PLO announced early this evening that it will convene the Palestinian National Council, the highest legislative body of the government, and invited rival factions, Hamas and al-Jihad, to participate. The move would mark a cooling of the PLO’s tense relationship with Islamic parties, one of which, Hamas, governs the Gaza Strip but is formally excluding from the overarching Palestinian government. 

These political developments had no visible effect on the demonstration by Ramallah youth at Qalandia checkpoint today. Palestinian schools are on strike over the killing of a 13-year old yesterday by Israeli forces in Bethlehem, and teams of youngsters waited outside of Qalandia refugee camp until the demonstration began. A group of teens debated whether or not a third Intifada had already started–with most saying it had not. 

protest.01

Palestinians in Qalandia march toward an Israeli checkpoint in a day of protests across the West Bank, October 6, 2015. (Photo: Allison Deger)

“I want an Intifada, but there is is no political program to obtain freedom,” Ward Adawi, 22, an emergency medic with the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, said after treating a Palestinian teen who was injured by a concussion grenade fired by the Israeli army.

“I don’t want demonstrations. I want an agreement with Israel,” said Rafah Alam, 18, as he sold coffee from a yellow kiosk stationed in the main street that runs between Qalandia and Ramallah. For Alam, it was unclear if the “day of rage” and a week of clashes between Palestinians protesters and the Israeli military—with settlers targeting Palestinians with flaming tires and rocks—would usher in another uprising, although he hoped it would not.

“The people here are very tired. They don’t trust our government at all– [or] the Israeli government,” said Walid Bayrat, 30, a sportswear store owner in Qalandia refugee camp during the clashes. “We don’t want to fight Israel, we are civilians, all the people you see here are civilians,” he said, motioning at the crowd of elementary aged children that comprised most of the protesters.

“If there is another Intifada the loser will be the people—our people—and not our government,” Bayrat said. He predicted that the current tinderbox will quiet “in one month only when all of our people will be defeated.”

(Source / 07.10.2015)

World Bank figures show Palestinian boycott of Israeli imports is starting to bite

Global BDS Movement

  • World Bank partially attributes 24% drop in Palestinian imports from Israel to boycott
  • Israel’s escalation of attacks on Palestinians underline urgency for BDS

Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activists have welcomed World Bank figures that show a 24% drop in Palestinian imports from Israel during the first quarter of 2015 as a strong sign that the boycott of Israeli goods by Palestinians is starting to hit the Israeli economy.

The World Bank explained the drop as “the result of reduced economic activity, but also a growing trend among Palestinian consumers to substitute products imported from Israel by those from other countries, as a result of which non-Israeli imports were up 22 percent.”

These new World Bank figures follow a drop in Palestinian imports by one fifth during 2014 compared to 2013 and come as Israel’s escalation of attacks on Palestinians underline urgency for BDS.

The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), the broadest Palestinian civil society coalition that leads and supports the global BDS movement, coordinates local Palestinian boycott campaigns against Israeli products, as well as complicit academic and cultural institutions.

BNC General Coordinator Mahmoud Nawajaa commented:

“These figures indicate that the grassroots boycott campaigns against Israel that have taken off across Palestine in recent years are already costing the Israeli economy hundreds of millions of dollars and could become an even more important factor in the near future.”

“This adds to the growing economic and political isolation that Israel’s regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid is starting to face internationally as a result of the fast-growing impact of the BDS movement.”

These latest figures came as prominent Israeli businessman Edouard Cukierman spoke publicly about a growing fear of investing in Israel among European investors due to BDS.

The authors of a UN report published in June partly attributed the 46% drop in foreign direct investment into Israel during 2014 to the growing strength of the BDS movement.

Just last month, French multinational Veolia divested completely from the Israeli market following a 7-year-long campaign, targeting its participation in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise, that cost it billions of dollars.

Nawajaa added that Israel’s escalation of its “criminal attacks” on Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, especially in Jerusalem and its Noble Sanctuary, shows the urgent need for further BDS pressure on Israel:

“The recent upsurge in popular resistance by Palestinians is a response to the way in which this far-right Israeli government has done everything possible to intensify the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, the desecration of our holy sites, the collective punishment of our people in Gaza, the construction of colonial settlements, and the adoption of more apartheid laws.”

“As a typical settler-colonial regime, Israel is viciously attacking and repressing popular Palestinian resistance with military violence, including indiscriminate use of force against Palestinian civilians, which constitutes war crimes.”

“Israel is only able to attack Palestinians with impunity and maintain its decades-old regime of settler colonialism and apartheid because of direct complicity of governments and their failure to ensure that Israel complies with international law.”

“Governments should meet their legal obligations to hold Israel accountable for its indiscriminate use of force against Palestinians, including by imposing an immediate two-way military embargo on Israel and cutting ties with Israeli academic institutions that are deeply involved in military research.”

“Grassroots BDS pressure on Israel will continue to grow rapidly and become even more widely supported both in Palestine and internationally.”

(Source / 07.10.2015)

Palestinian woman shot and stripped naked

Israeli claims that the woman stabbed a colonist in occupied East Jerusalm have been refuted

Undercover Israeli security personnel and Israeli occupation soldiers detain Palestinian protester during clas

Ramallah: A Palestinian woman was shot near Al Haram Al Sharif in occupied East Jerusalem after an Israeli colonist harassed her while on her way to Wadi Al Jouz.

The woman, Hanin Doyat, is believed to be 20 years old or younger.

According to eyewitness reports, the Jewish colonist tried to pull off her headscarf. In response, she hit the attacker with her handbag and was then shot at point-blank range. It was unclear whether she was shot by the colonist or by Israeli police.

The Israeli regime claims the woman had a knife and stabbed the colonist, but sources who spoke Gulf News disputed the claim, saying there were no traces of blood at the scene before the woman was shot.

The sources said the bleeding woman was laid on the ground and stripped naked. Enraged Palestinian bystanders clashed with Israeli occupation forces near Lion’s Gate at Al Haram Al Sharif.

The woman was taken to an Israeli hospital for treatment, but no information has been released about her condition, identity or age.

Observers say the attack was an attempt by the Israeli regime to scare the Murabitat – women defenders of Al Haram Al Sharif – who have largely been successful in the past of preventing Jewish raids on the Muslim holy site.

The Israeli regime has beefed up its military and police forces in the occupied holy city on an unprecedented scale. Observers say this is an attempt to judaise the entire city, erasing its Palestinian and Muslim identity entirely.

(Source / 07.10.2015)