German Intelligence Warns Saudi Arabia Is ‘Destabilizing Arab World’

The memo focuses particularly on the role of Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the 30-year-old son of King Salman who was recently appointed deputy crown prince and defense minister.

Saudi King Salman, left, speaks with his son Prince Mohammed bin Salman as they wait for Gulf Arab leaders ahead of the opening of a Gulf Cooperation Council summit, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. On Wednesday, April 29, 2015. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)

Saudi King Salman, left, speaks with his son Prince Mohammed bin Salman as they wait for Gulf Arab leaders ahead of the opening of a Gulf Cooperation Council summit, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. On Wednesday, April 29, 2015

BERLIN — Germany’s foreign intelligence agency believes Saudi Arabia’s ambitious defense minister could endanger the Gulf kingdom’s ties with regional allies by attempting to cement his place in the royal succession, according to a memo released Wednesday.

It is unusual for the BND spy agency to publicly release such a blunt assessment on a country that is considered an ally of the West. Germany has long-standing political and economic ties with Saudi Arabia.

Under King Salman and his son Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the defense minister, Saudi Arabia is trying to position itself as the leader of the Arab world, the agency noted in the memo. Saudis with knowledge of the royal family say Salman is in his mid-80s. He has been in power since January, following the death of his half-brother King Abdullah.

“The previous cautious diplomatic stance of older leaders within the royal family is being replaced by a new impulsive policy of intervention,” the BND said, citing the kingdom’s involvement in Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Iraq and Yemen.

The Saudi royal court couldn’t immediately be reached for comment on the report and the Saudi Foreign Ministry didn’t return a call.

The memo also warned that “the concentration of economic and foreign policy power in Mohammed bin Salman carries the latent risk that, in trying to establish his position in the royal succession during his father’s lifetime, he might draw the ire of other members of the royal family and the population with expensive measure or reforms, and also strain relations with friendly and allied states in the region.”

Just months after his father became king, Mohammed bin Salman, 30, was named second-in-line to the throne, drawing rare public rebuke from a few senior princes. First-in-line to the throne is Interior Minister and Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef, the king’s nephew.

In addition to his role as deputy crown prince and defense minister, Mohammed bin Salman also oversees the country’s top economic council and Saudi oil policy.

Washington-based think tank The Brookings Institution published an essay in September that said the prince’s “unbridled ambition has alienated many of his fellow princes,” adding that “he has a reputation for arrogance and ruthlessness.”

(Source / 03.12.2015)

Two more Palestinians shot dead by Israeli forces in West Bank

Israeli forces stand near the body of a Palestinian who was shot dead in the West Bank village of Hizma, north of al-Quds on December 3, 2015. (AFP photo)

Israeli forces stand near the body of a Palestinian who was shot dead in the West Bank village of Hizma, north of al-Quds on December 3, 2015

Israeli forces have gunned down two more Palestinians as tensions remain high in the occupied West Bank. 

The Israeli military said in a statement that a shooting incident took place on Thursday at the Hizma military checkpoint north of the occupied al-Quds (Jerusalem) after a Palestinian exited his vehicle and opened fire on the Israeli forces.

“A gunman stopped at a checkpoint near Hizmeh, exited his vehicle and shot forces at the site,” the statement said, adding, “The forces responded, shooting the attacker and resulting in his death.”

An Israeli soldier and a bystander were wounded in the attack, it noted.

The Palestinian sources have identified the slain Palestinian as Mazin Hasan Ureiba from the West Bank city of Abu Dis.

Also on Thursday evening, Israeli troops shot and killed another Palestinian who allegedly tried to stab a policeman in East al-Quds.

The incident took place near the entrance to the Damascus Gate in the city.

Israeli media reports say the policeman was also wounded mistakenly by soldiers who opened fire on the Palestinian man. The wounded policeman suffered a stab wound to his hand and a gunshot wound to his leg.

The latest incidents comes amid deadly tensions between the Tel Aviv regime and Palestinians over the past weeks.

Also on Tuesday, two Palestinians were killed in separate incidents by the Israeli forces across the occupied territories.

According to Israeli sources, a young female Palestinian was shot after attacking a soldier in the city of Tulkarm. She died of injuries as Israeli soldiers prevented medics from reaching her.

Just hours earlier, a Palestinian man was killed for similar allegations in Bethlehem.

Tensions are running high between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The wave of unrest was triggered by Israel’s imposition in August of restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East al-Quds.

At least 111 Palestinians and nearly 20 Israelis have been killed in the recent wave of clashes between Palestinians and Israelis since the start of October. 

Palestinian home razed in the West Bank 

The Israeli army said on Thursday that troops razed to the ground Rajeb Aliweh’s home in Nablus for allegedly masterminding the killing of an Israeli settler couple on October 1.

Palestinian police said Israeli forces entered the city at about 2:00 a.m. local time and blew up the second-floor apartment.

A Palestinian man looks at the rubble of the house of Rajeb Aliweh after it was destroyed by Israeli authorities in the West Bank city of Nablus early in the morning of December 3, 2015

Israeli authorities have demolished several Palestinian houses on similar accusations over the past few months. Human rights groups say the demolitions are an act of collective punishment.

Palestinians are angry at increasing raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and attacks on their property by Israeli extremists. They believe that the attacks are orchestrated, aimed at changing the demographic status of the third holiest site in Islam.

(Source / 03.12.2015)

Gaza: Turkey to Rebuild Mosques Destroyed by Israel

Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate announced, Wednesday, that it would rebuild nine mosques destroyed in last year’s Israeli military onslaught on the blockaded Gaza Strip.

Moskee

Deputy directorate chief Hasan Kemal Yilmaz told Anadolu Agency, according to Al Ray, that the total cost of the project would be $4.5 million, $1.2 million of which had already been disbursed.

While in Gaza to make the announcement, Yilmaz visited the Turkish-Palestinian Friendship Hospital, which was built by the Turkish government more than two years ago at a total cost of $34 million.

Yilmaz, at the head of a delegation of directorate officials, arrived in the Gaza Strip early Wednesday, via the northern Erez border crossing, for a two-day visit to the blockaded Palestinian enclave.

According to Palestine’s Ministry of Religious Endowments, 64 mosques were destroyed during Israel’s devastating military offensive last year while another 150 were partially damaged.

In July and August of 2014, the Israeli army pounded the blockaded Gaza Strip for seven weeks — by air, land and sea — with the ostensible aim of staunching Palestinian rocket fire.

Along with killing more than 2,150 Palestinians and injuring thousands of others, the offensive also left vast swathes of Gaza’s critical infrastructure in ruins, most of which has yet to be rebuilt.

(Source / 03.12.2015)

Palestinian families suffer crackdown as political parties stand aside

Israeli soldiers interrogate a Palestinian family during a raid in the West Bank refugee camp of Jalazon in June 2014

BETHLEHEM (Maan) — A constant stream of people filter into the Hebron branch of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society, climbing up a dimly-lit stairwell of the nondescript office building tucked into the folds of the occupied city.Musa sits in the chair opposite the office secretary. “I’m trying to find my son,” he says, beginning a conversation that has been repeated by bleak-faced family members in the same room hundreds of times before.“I think he’s in Ofer but I don’t know if they transferred him,” he continues, referring to an Israeli detention center in the West Bank.The secretary opens one of dozens of binders that lay beside her, flips to the file of Musa’s son, and phones someone with access to information on his whereabouts.After a brief exchange of identification numbers and dates, the secretary hangs up the phone and hands Musa her card. “Call us back later today, he’s finding out.”A group has now gathered at the entrance of the prisoners’ society office, mostly fathers. They represent a fraction of Palestinians across the occupied West Bank awaiting news on loved ones recently detained by Israeli military forces.The number of those detained has skyrocketed since Oct. 1, with around 2,000 Palestinians landing in Israeli jails over the last two months, according to prisoners’ rights group Addameer.The detentions are one of several policies implemented by Israeli authorities in an attempt to quash an escalation of youth demonstrations as well as attacks by individual Palestinians on Israeli military and civilians.Mass arrest campaigns are usually carried out following attacks. Palestinians expect them. Despite the normalcy that accompanies arrest raids, Abed Alaal Alanani, the West Bank director of the Palestinian Prisoner’s’ Society, told Ma’an that the last two months have marked a noticeable change in how detentions are being carried out.During the Second Intifada, Israel would often target Palestinian political groups who were responsible for orchestrating attacks on Israeli interests. The majority of attacks since Oct. 1, however, have been carried out by individuals who have no background of “security violations” with Israel, and no strong political affiliation.Because no political group is taking responsibility for attacks, Abed said, the relationship between Israeli security forces and Palestinian families is shifting: Instead of punishing political groups, the families of individuals have become the target of Israeli crackdowns.“It’s a big problem for the Israelis,” Abed told Ma’an. “Why? Because in general all of the people that make problems with the Israelis now are not going to do so by an order of their political committee.  This is different from the Second Intifada.”The lack of political backing or organization of recent attacks has, in effect, pitted Israeli security establishment against individual Palestinians and their families, Abed said.‘They have to show something’Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld told Ma’an that police, “as part of ongoing investigations,” often become involved with the family members of the perpetrator following an attack.“After every attack, it’s important to understand how they [the attacker] arrived to the area, how they made their way to the scene,” Rosenfeld said.“Sometimes, members of the families are questioned.  We go into the houses to see what different materials there are that the terrorist had access to. We also look on computers and access their social network accounts to see what the person was involved with before the attack.”Murad, a legal assistant at Addameer, told Ma’an that the measures police and security forces have taken with family members since Oct. 1 go much further than simple questioning.“Detaining family members, this is a new thing,” he told Ma’an, citing both detention of attackers’ families as well as relatives of Palestinian youth who participate in demonstrations against Israeli forces.“They [Israeli forces] have to show something. They have a responsibility as security forces to show Israeli society that they are doing something to save their [Israeli] lives.“They punish the family, because they need to put the responsibility on the shoulders of someone,” Murad told Ma’an.Where Palestinian political leadership is absent to channel the sharp edges of Israeli action following attacks, Palestinian families have been left to bear the brunt.Rather than acknowledging the ongoing military occupation, Murad said, Israeli authorities are exercising collective punishment — illegal under international law — on innocent relatives in attempt to exert pressure on families to stop activity against Israel.Collective punishment, collective angerMass detention hasn’t been the only measure implemented by Israeli forces against Palestinian relatives to those involved in demonstrations or attacks.Amjad a-Najjar heads the prisoners’ society in Hebron, the largest city in the occupied West Bank and site of nearly a third of recent detentions.He points to Israel’s withholding of bodies of Palestinians who were killed while carrying out attacks on Israelis as one example of the direct Israeli affront on families.The practice was initially used during the Second Intifada to punish orchestrators of attacks when suicide bombings made it impossible to punish those who actually carried out the attacks, as well as to prevent funerals-turned-nationalistic events.Israel’s revamping of the temporarily-lost practice ignited the Hebron area last month. Dominated by a handful of major family names, the refusal to return one body rippled across the city, defaming hundreds outside of the immediate family of the killed attacker, Amjad told Ma’an.Meanwhile, Israel has increased demolition of homes belonging to the families of Palestinians who perpetrate attacks, revoked the residency for Jerusalem families related to the suspects, and sealed Palestinian villages and towns following attacks since October.In some ways, Amjad sees as a good thing the disintegration of political affiliation and accountability that he says potentially influenced Israel’s increased policies of collective punishment.Amjad — who spent ten years in Israeli prison for involvement with the Fatah party — said that in the past, political affiliation posed as a deterrent for many from gaining common ground against the Israeli occupation.“Before…not all people were political. I’m with Fatah, but my brother didn’t care to learn about the Fatah movement. He didn’t get involved.”“Now,” Amjad said, “Israel has taken all of the people to Intifada…it’s an entirely different situation. They have no focus….they are instead punishing everyone.”While Hebron is unique, Abed told Ma’an he sees something similar occurring across the occupied territory. “It’s not about the Fatah organization, or Hamas organization…When one person is killed, the families want to take action. It’s between Israel and individual families.”

(Source / 03.12.2015)

Assad Crimes and Russian Aggression Spread Chaos and Instability

The Local Coordination Committees documented 81 people killed yesterday across Syria by regime forces backed by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and the Hezbollah militia. Many of the victims were also killed by Russian airstrikes including 5 children and 6 women. 3 people died under torture in Assad’s prisons.

Russian warplanes hit the town of Soura in Dara’a province and FSA positions in northern rural Aleppo, which allowed ISIS militants to advance on a number of rebel-held villages in the area.

Russian airstrikes also targeted a secondary school and a power generator in the town of Jisr al-Shughur, causing civilian casualties. They also hit the villages of al-Tamana’a and southern Khan Shaykhun in Idlib province.

Member of the political committee Fuad Aliko said that continued targeting of civilian areas and infrastructure by Russian airstrikes and Assad forces will further spread chaos and instability and will help ISIS to grow and fester in Syria.

Aliko pointed out that targeting infrastructure increases the suffering of Syrians, and is a war crime punishable under international law.

On Wednesday, the UK House of Commons voted in favor of Prime Minister David Cameron’s proposal to deploy the Royal Air Force to launch airstrikes against ISIS in Syria as part of the US-led coalition against the extremist group.

Prime Minister David Cameron stressed that the campaign against ISIS required political and diplomatic action in addition to the military action. He made it clear that Britain would work tirelessly with international partners to bring about a political solution in Syria that would allow the formation of a new government in Damascus without Assad. This new government, Cameron said, would become a partner in the fight against ISIS.

(Source: Syrian Coalition / 03.12.2015)

Dawabsha family: Israeli government gave settlers a ‘licence to kill’

Relatives carry the body of Palestinian toddler Ali Saad Dawabsha, through the streets of the West Bank village of Duma during his funeral on July 31, 2015

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The Dawabsha family on Thursday held the Israeli government responsible for an arson attack carried out by settlers which killed three family members in July, as Israeli security forces revealed that several Jewish extremists had been arrested on suspicion of murder.
“The Israeli government is the one who gave settlers a license to kill by giving them freedom to enter Palestinian villages,” Hussein Dawabsha, the father of Riham, who was killed in the attack, told Ma’an following news of the arrests.
“The case is still not clear as no Israeli official updated me on the case and I knew about the arrest from journalists.”
The failure to detain any suspects following the deadly attack in July has angered Palestinians and been criticized by the the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Nickolay Mladenov.
Hussein Dawabsha told Ma’an that the family is still trying to recover from the devastating loss of 18-month-old Ali and the infant’s mother and father, Riham and Saad, who later died from severe burns.
“My message to the Israeli government is clear, which is not only to arrest settlers but to prevent any settlers assaulting Palestinians and entering Palestinian villages and towns,” he said.

“It would not be enough even if they were sentenced to death. I would not be satisfied by any sentence as nothing will bring back the family that I lost.”

Earlier, an Israeli police spokeswoman for Arab media, Luba al-Samri, confirmed that police “recently arrested young men suspected of membership in a Jewish terrorist organization, and of carrying out different terrorist attacks.”
“Specific suspicions are being examined about involvement in the abominable terrorist attack of torching the home of the Dawabsha family in the Palestinian town of Duma,” she added.
On July 31, suspected Israeli settlers smashed the windows of the Dawabsha family home before throwing flammable liquids and Molotov cocktails inside, setting the home ablaze.
The attack sparked criticism from the international community for Israel’s failure to hold Israeli settlers and Jewish extremists accountable for attacks on Palestinians, in effect being complicit in such attacks.Israeli leadership at the time condemned the Dawabsha attack as “terrorism,” and pledged to bring the perpetrators to justice.Israeli rights group B’Tselem slammed the reaction by Israeli officials as “empty rhetoric.””Official condemnations of this attack are empty rhetoric as long as politicians continue their policy of avoiding enforcement of the law on Israelis who harm Palestinians, and do not deal with the public climate and the incitement which serve as backdrop to these acts,” the group said at the time.
(Source / 03.12.2015)

ISRAELI JAILS IN THE WINTER: OVERCROWDING AND SHORTAGE OF SUPPLIES (REPORT)

Pal prisoners 620

Palestinian prisoners in different Israeli prisons live a state of extreme anxiety these days because of the large number of new prisoners at this critical time of the year; the beginning of the winter, while the Israeli prison service (IPS) attempts to extort prisoners by not providing them with enough materials to cope with the freezing winter weather.

The detainees are anxious that the coming winter will be the hardest on them with the extraordinary increase in the number of prisoners due to the subsequent arrest campaigns as a result of the current intifada (uprising). These large-scale arrests exacerbate the situation day by day.
Not enough material to share
According to the statistics of the Palestine Center for Prisoners Studies (PCPS), nearly 1,200 Palestinian prisoners entered the prison recently, only to be added to the six thousand prisoners that are already crowding the Israeli occupation jails. Such a situation had led to significant increase in the number of prisoners and made the prisons suddenly overcrowded, which highlight the problem the prisoners will face in managing their needs with the advent of winter.
In light of this overcrowding  of prisoners, old prisoners share the materials they have in prison with new prisoners because the IPS refuses to provide detainees with needed materials, but the large growing number of prisoners makes sharing materials not enough to meet the prisoners needs.
The Follow-up Commissions for Prisoner Affairs warn of repercussions on the prisoners’ conditions as a result to the lack of winter supplies, questioning the level of infrastructure in the prisons and the failure to provide supplies to the prisoners, particularly those who are ill and those suffering from rheumatism, diseases of the bones and nerves and other diseases.
Qaddura Fares, head of Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS), said that there is no indication, until the moment, that the IPS will allow the entry of clothes and blankets. He expressed his concern that “this winter will apparently be a tough season on the prisoners which means that the lives of prisoners are threatened.”
International institutions
Fares charged that the IPS was deliberately not providing prisoners with their needs of clothes and blankets, in addition to not providing them with necessary material to protect them from the cold spells. Besides, it does not give the international institutions the opportunity to intervene to resolve this problem.
He stressed that the Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) and the Israeli government do not respect the Red Cross organization, so the organization is no longer able to provide simple needs for the Palestinian prisoners.
Prisoner Abdel Fattah Dola, representative of the prisoners in Ofer prison, said that Ofer prison has become crammed by detainees due to the large number of new detainees to whom no enough supplies are available.
He pointed out that the minors section of the prison houses 187 minor prisoners, most of them are new prisoners detained in the recent arrests without providing them with the basic supplies, as well as winter needs.
He stressed that the prisoners are demanding urgent solutions to cope with winter. He also expressed their concern that the IPS might refuse to respond to the demands for the provision of basic needs to the Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails.

(Source / 03.12.2015)

UNHCR ends G4S contracts in Jordan following campaign pressure

Protest in London, calls on the UN to cancel its $22m contracts with G4S.  (Photo: BDS Movement/Facebook)

Protest in London, calls on the UN to cancel its $22m contracts with G4S

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement announced a victory today as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Jordan confirmed to journalists that it no longer does business with the British private security firm G4S.

The announcement followed an intensive phase of campaigning by groups around the world demanding that the UN drop its contracts with G4S, reaching a high point at the end of November with actions to coincide with the UN-declared International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

Groups is at least six cities around the world held protests at UN offices, and over 15,000 people took action online over the week demanding that the United Nations drop its contracts worth US$22 million with Israeli prison contractor and human rights abuser G4S.

G4S is the world’s largest private security company in the world, and has come under fire from campaigners for a range of grave human rights abuses, including deaths in custody at its prisons and detention centres in the UK, Australia and South Africa.

G4S has been a target for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement because it supplies services and systems to all of the major Israeli prisons, including those where Palestinian political prisoners are held in administrative detention, without charge or trial, and subject to torture. On top of this G4S provides equipment and services to military checkpoints along the illegal Apartheid Wall, and to a new Israeli police academy.

Protest in Amman calling on the UN to cancel its $22m contracts with G4S. (Photo: BDS Movement/Facebook)

The UN’s use of G4S security services in Jordan was brought to light in an open letter to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, penned by Kali Rubaii of Friends of Sabeel North America in September 2014. After more digging, campaigners discovered that various UN agencies held more than $22million USD in contracts with G4S in locations around the world. The UNHCR in Jordan was one such agency, with G4S contracts worth $1.7million in 2014.

A detailed set of guidelines has been put in place by the UN to ensure that its contractors “support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights and to ensure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.” And yet, G4S has been specifically named by Palestinian human rights organisations and even the UN former special rapporteur on Palestine as a company with a particularly high level of complicity in systematic human rights abuses against Palestinians.

UN officials certainly had more than enough time to respond to these issues. In April 2015, a group of Palestinian human rights organizations wrote a letter to the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urging the UN to terminate its contracts with G4S due to its complicity in the Israeli occupation’s prison system and human rights violations as well as a record of grave human rights violations around the world. After receiving no response, over 220 solidarity groups, trade unions, human rights organizations and migrant solidarity groups from around the world joined the call.

After months of no response from the UN, on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, we asked: What is the meaning of solidarity if not heeding the repeated calls put out by Palestinian groups to boycott companies profiting from the oppression of Palestinians?

G4S has already come under tremendous pressure over its Israeli contracts and other human rights issues. The international campaign against G4S has cost the company millions of dollars’ worth of contracts with universities, trade unions and banks. However, the UN continues to enable G4S to whitewash its image by allowing its various agencies to maintain contracts with G4S.

It is good news that the UNHCR has decided to stop contracting G4S, but we still need to keep up the pressure on the other UN agencies to follow suit.

If you haven’t already, please add your name to the more than 15,000 who have already emailed Ban Ki-moon demanding that the #UNdropG4S.

(Source / 03.12.2015)

Over 1,000 Israeli troops raid Jerusalem refugee camp to demolish home

The home of Ibrahim Akkari, who carried out a car attack in Jerusalem last year, was demolished by Israeli forces in Shuafat refugee camp

Israeli security forces stand guard in the east Jerusalem Shuafat refugee camp ahead of a planned demolition of a home of a Palestinian who carried out car-ramming attack last year, on 2 December 2015

Over 1,200 Israeli troops stormed the Shuafat refugee camp in Jerusalem on Wednesday morning and blew up the house of a Palestinian man who rammed his car at a light rail stop last year.

Ibrahim al-Akkari, 47, was shot dead by Israeli forces after running over and killing one Israeli soldier on 5 November 2014 in Jerusalem. Thirteen other Israelis were injured. A 60-year-old Palestinian man caught in the attack later died of his wounds.

Israeli judges had issued a demolition order for Akkari’s house a week after the attack, but the order was postponed due to complications with security measures, said the government.

The Israeli Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Akkari’s family to halt the demolition in December 2014.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed in October to accelerate home demolitions, despite various human rights organisations and international law classifying the measure as an act of collective punishment.

Speaking before the slated demolition, Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samri said in a statement that the police “won’t allow any disturbance of peace by residents, and will firmly defy any such attempts [to demolish the home] regardless of if they are caused by young or elderly people.”

The camp, notorious for its high crime rate, severe government negligence and poor sanitary conditions, is home to around 80,000 Palestinian residents of Jerusalem.

Helicopters hovering in the sky accompanied the troops, leaving the camp under lockdown with residents prevented from going outside. Akkari’s house was then surrounded before it was fitted with explosives and then blown up.

Hatim Abdel-Qader, a resident of Shuafat camp who previously served as a Palestinian legislative minister for Jerusalem, told Middle East Eye that this was “a new war crime committed by Israel against the Palestinian people.

“Israel thinks that these measures will deter Palestinians from the struggle but this will not stop our defence of our land and of Jerusalem,” he said. “Punitive actions by Israel only add more oil to the fire.”

Abdel-Qader said that he will look into the possibility of asking the Palestinian Authority, whose jurisdiction does not exist in Jerusalem, to help the Akkari family financially and materially.

Mohammed al-Rushdi, a resident of the camp, said that the Israeli forces had planned to enter the camp at a time where most of its young men would be at work.

“[The Israeli forces] seized the opportunity and went inside the camp at around 8:30am,” he told Middle East Eye. “What was strange was before that, the checkpoint [which residents must cross if they are leaving the camp] was easy-going and the soldiers manning the checkpoint were very relaxed.”

“Usually raids by Israeli occupation forces occur pre-dawn, but they planned it this time when they knew the men in the camp would be outside of it,” he added.

The Shuafat camp was under total curfew for a few hours. The families living next to the Akkari family home were forced outside onto the street prior to the demolition.

Clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces ensued after the demolition was carried out, resulting in 43 Palestinians injured, according to the Red Crescent in Jerusalem.

(Source / 03.12.2015)

BREAKING: sentences against Badie, 36 others overruled

BREAKING: sentences against Badie, 36 others overruled

CAIRO: Death sentences against former supreme guide of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood (MB) group Mohamed Badie and 11 other high ranking members were overruled Thursday by the Court of Cassation.

In April, the Giza Criminal Court sentenced him and his co-defendants, including the father of dual Egyptian-U.S. Mohamed Sultan, to death over inciting killing and spreading chaos by running an operation room in Cairo-based Rabaa square , where MB members and supporters were sitting-in.

Giza court also sentenced 24 others to life imprisonment in the same case that is dubbed in media as “Rabaa Operation Room.”

(Source / 03.12.2015)