Israeli Air Force Strikes A Qassam Site In Gaza

The Israeli Air Force fired, on Monday at dawn, at least two missiles targeting a training site run by the al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, in the Zeitoun area, south of Gaza City.

Aanval Gaza 071215

Media sources in Gaza said two missiles struck “Tunis” center, causing excessive property damage but no injuries.

The Israeli army claimed that armed fighters in Gaza carried out two separate attacks, over the weekend, targeting Israeli military vehicles, driving along the border fence with Gaza, causing no damage or injuries.

On Sunday evening, the soldiers shot and moderately injured one Palestinian, east of the al-Boreij refugee camp, in Central Gaza.

The Palestinian was transferred to the Al-Aqsa Hospital suffering a gunshot injury in the abdomen.

Local sources said a number of Palestinians gathered in an area close to the border fence, before the soldiers, stationed on military towers across the border fence, opened fire on them.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Syria: British Airstrike Kills 20 Civilians in Hasaka

Syria: US-Led Airstrikes Kill 20 Civilians in Hasaka

TEHRAN (FNA)- Twenty civilians were killed in a US airstrike on Syria’s Northeastern Hasaka province following another US air raid on the Syrian army base in Southeastern Deir Ezzur province that killed several soldiers earlier today. (British planes have been identified as responsible for the Syrian army raid and may well have done this one also.)

The US-led airstrikes hit al-Khan near al-Hawl town in Hasakah, killing 20 civilians and injuring 30 others.

Earlier this morning, four US-led coalition warplanes targeted the Syrian army camp with 9 rockets, claiming the lives of 4 soldiers and injuring 16 others.

Both dissidents and government sources confirmed early on Monday that the US warplanes struck the military camp of the Syrian army’s 137th Artillery Brigade (17th Reserve Division) in the Southern part of ‘Ayyash’ village, killing 4 soldiers instantly and wounding 16 more. Six of the wounded soldiers are in critical condition.

They further added that the ISIL terrorists stormed the bombed camp a few hours after the air attack.

The Syrian army’s 137th Brigade has been protecting the civilians in ‘Ayyash’ from the swarming ISIL fighters that are attempting to break into the provincial capital of the Deir Ezzur province from the Northern side; this airstrike only boosted the ISIL positions inside this village and the nearby broadcast tower.

The sources further added that the ISIL launched an offensive against the government forces’ positions in Ayyash village 10 kilometers Northwest of Deir Ezzur city.

The Syrian army and its allies have gained upper hand in the Eastern province of Deir Ezzur in the recent weeks, after new recruits of popular forces joined the army and won back new lands across the province , and meantime fended off the ISIL attacks on their positions, mainly the Deir Ezzur airbase.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Israeli organ trafficker arrested in Turkey

Israeli occupation state has a long record in human organ trafficking always active during times of disasters

A wanted Jewish Israeli organ trafficker had been arrested at Istanbul's Ataturk airport in Turkey, a Turkish news agency reported.

The Ukrainian-born Israeli reportedly came to Turkey to harvest organs from desperate Syrian refugees, the daily Vatan newspaper reported

Days of Palestine, Istanbul –A wanted Jewish Israeli organ trafficker had been arrested at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport in Turkey, a Turkish news agency reported.

Dogan news agency said that the Israeli Boris Volfman was arrested on suspicion of organ trafficking and fraud after flying from Bangkok on Friday night.

The Ukrainian-born Israeli reportedly came to Turkey to harvest organs from desperate Syrian refugees, the daily Vatan newspaper reported.

There was no comment from Turkish or Israeli authorities concerning Volfman’s arrest, but a Turkish court on Saturday ordered his extradition to the Israeli occupation state after a 40-day arrest period.

Turkish media reported an investigation has been launched to determine his contacts in Turkey.

It is worth mentioning that the Israeli occupation state has a long record in human organ trafficking and its agents are active during times of disasters.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Israeli forces shoot, kill another Palestinian in al-Quds

An injured young Palestinian man lies on the ground after being shot by Israeli forces in al-Quds (Jerusalem), December 6, 2015.

An injured young Palestinian man lies on the ground after being shot by Israeli forces in al-Quds (Jerusalem), December 6, 2015

Israeli military forces have shot and killed another Palestinian in al-Quds (Jerusalem) as tensions between Israeli troops and Palestinian protesters in the occupied territories show no sign of abatement.

On Sunday evening, Israeli troopers opened fired at a young Palestinian man, identified as 21-year-old Omar Yasser Eskafi, after he allegedly sought to run over a group of illegal settlers, before coming out of his vehicle and stabbing three of them with a knife, Arabic-language Safa news agency reported.

Witnesses said the man later succumbed to his injuries.

The report came only a day after Israeli forces shot and injured a 16-year-old Palestinian boy, identified as Aqel Ramzi, during clashes with Palestinian demonstrators in the northern West Bank town of Kafr Qaddum, located 13 kilometers (8 miles) west of Nablus.

The participants were protesting against the Israeli regime’s expansion of illegal settlements and construction of the separation wall that snakes across occupied Palestinian territories and isolates large swathes of them.

A Palestinian demonstrator uses a slingshot to hurl rocks at Israeli forces during clashes following a demonstration against Israeli occupation, in the Palestinian town of al-Bireh on the outskirts of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, November 29, 2015

Tensions between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip continue nonstop. 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.

Palestinians are also angry at increasing violence by Israeli settlers, who frequently storm the al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in Islam. The Palestinians say the Tel Aviv regime seeks to change the status quo of the compound.

At least 115 Palestinians and nearly 20 Israelis have been killed in the recent wave of clashes between Palestinians and Israelis since the start of October.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Clinton: ‘Black flag of ISIS’ is the alternative to Palestinian Authority

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks about relations with Israel and the situation with Daesh at the Willard Hotel, December 6, 2015. (AFP/Mark Wilson)

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks about relations with Israel and the situation with Daesh at the Willard Hotel, December 6, 2015

The black flag of Islamic State (Daesh) may fly over the Palestinian territories should the Palestinian Authority and its president, Mahmoud Abbas, fail to maintain order, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Sunday.

Speaking to the Brookings Institution’s Saban Forum, an annual Washington gathering on relations between the US and Israel, Clinton recommitted to the pursuit of a two-state solution: “A one-state solution is no solution,” she told the forum. But she called on Palestinian leadership and the Arab League to recognize that, under such a scheme, Israel would be a Jewish state, alongside a sovereign Palestinian state.

In a speech framed by her personal commitment to Israel, Clinton said three major threats face the state requiring robust American defense and diplomatic support: Metastasizing extremism throughout the Muslim world, an aggressive government in Iran and an effort to delegitimize Israel in international bodies.

The first fight, she said, is a shared one. A new brand of terrorism embodied by Islamic State must be fought on the ground and online, Clinton said multiple times, to applause. And the second will require strict enforcement of the nuclear deal reached with Iran back in July.

“There will be consequences for even small violations” of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, Clinton said, “if we see any indication.” The deal allows for one member of the United Nations Security Council to snap sanctions on Iran back into place should a violation be identified.

Iran’s “fingerprints,” she added, are on every conflict in the Middle East— a challenge for the US and Israel alike. She said the nuclear deal was imperfect, but said it would make her job easier as president if the issue of Iran’s nuclear ambitions is successfully shelved.

She also had harsh words for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel, which she said was not only counter-productive, but linked to anti-Semitism.

But she did offer criticism of Israeli leadership, as well, asking many conservative Israeli politicians present who is “standing in the wings” should Abbas leave office.

“Let’s be honest here,” she said. “The alternative is the black flag of ISIS.”

Earlier in her prepared remarks, she noted the growth of an Islamic State cell in the Sinai Peninsula, and the potential for support of the group in the Gaza Strip.

In her call for renewed negotiations, she suggested a potential alignment of interests with the Arab world that could both facilitate the talks, and could be bolstered by an ultimate settlement of the decades-old conflict. The Saban Forum also featured speeches from Israel’s Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and US Secretary of State John Kerry.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

600 UAE-funded housing units given to refugees in Gaza

A Palestinian girl stands in front of the UNRWA logo with a Palestinian flag in Gaza

A Palestinian girl stands in front of the UNRWA logo with a Palestinian flag in Gaza

The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) yesterday handed over 600 UAE-funded housing units to families in Gaza.

UNRWA’s Chief of Infrastructure and Camp Improvement Project, Rafiq Abed announced the delivery of the units in the framework of an Emirati project known as Khalifa City, named after the UAE’s President Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan.

Abed said the project targeted three categories of beneficiaries: refugees whose homes were demolished during Israel’s military operations; poor residents, and others whose homes were demolished for the construction of roads.

He added that the residential units also include a school, a water cistern, a mosque and infrastructure, noting that the project cost $20 million.

UNRWA’s Deputy Director of Operations Melinda Young said that work began in 2007, with construction being halted several times due to the Israeli blockade and successive wars on Gaza.

Young added that the units are expected to provide shelter for 4,000 Palestinian refugees.

She explained that UNRWA is discussing other projects with the UAE in the Gaza Strip, since about 14,000 homes were damaged by last year’s Israeli war, leaving many Palestinians homeless.

She called for the need to end the “unjust” blockade imposed on Gaza and give the Palestinians their right to freedom of travel and movement, as well as the right to have construction material and humanitarian aid delivered to Gaza.

Israel launched a 51-day war on the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2014 killing 2,322 Palestinians. Around 28,366 housing units were either partially or completely destroyed by the shelling, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Public Works and Housing.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

ASSAD ACCUSES COALITION OF ATTACK ON HIS ARMY BASE, 3 DEAD – BUT LOOKING MORE LIKE ANOTHER RUSSIAN MESS-UP

By Peter Clifford            ©             (www.petercliffordonline.com/syria-iraq-news-5/)

http://www.petercliffordonline.com/syria-news-3

SYRIA – IRAQ – NEWS

4 jet aircraft launched 9 missiles yesterday, Sunday, evening against one of the Assad regime’s army bases at Saequa near the town of Ayyash in Deir Ez-Zour province.

3 of Assad’s soldiers are reported killed and 13 wounded. In addition 3 armoured vehicles, 4 other military vehicles, two heavy machine guns and a weapon and ammunition depot were also destroyed.

SYRIA NEWS

Coalition Aircraft Prepares for Bombing Raid in Syria

The Syrian Government immediately claimed it was an attack by the US-led Coalition and lodged a complaint with the UN Security Council and the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon.

However, Colonel Steve Warren, the Coalition spokesman has denied that it was anything to do with them and said, “We’ve seen those Syrian reports but we did not conduct any strikes in that part of Deir Ez-Zour yesterday. So we see no evidence.”

The nearest Coalition strikes on Sunday were 55 kilometres (34 miles) to the east where they hit well-heads in the Omar Oil Field.

“There were no human beings in the area that we struck yesterday,” Warren added.

The co-ordinates of all Coalition airstrikes would be carefully logged – so it should be obvious where their planes struck.

The UK made its second run of bombing in Syria on Friday, this time using Typhoons.

President Assad just before last Wednesday’s vote in the UK Parliament to allow the RAF to operate in Syria, said in an interview with the Sunday Times about the proposition, “It will be harmful and illegal and it will support terrorism as happened after the coalition started its operation a year or so [ago].”

“You cannot defeat ISIS through airstrikes alone,” Assad said. “You cannot defeat them without cooperation with forces on the ground. You cannot defeat them if you do not have buy-in from the general public and the [Syrian] government.”

EDITOR: This is feeling very much like a “set-up” or an attempt to cover-up another Russian mistake. At least twice already Russian aircrew have been accused of bombing pro-Assad Hezbollah and Shiite militias and Assad’s troops. But the Syrian Government says nothing about that.

And it may all be part of a clever Assad strategy to get the Coaltion to co-ordinate their attacks with the Assad Government, so it would then appear as if the 2 sides are working in “partnership”.

Already, Assad and the Russians have got the West to change the narrative from ” Assad must go” to “let him stay in place during a transition to elections”. And lately, John Kerry, the US Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, has even been heard to state that Syrian Opposition fighters should be persuaded to work with the Assad regime to defeat the Islamic State first.

All of this smacks of an attempt to legitimise President Assad – the biggest killer of civilians in Syria bar none, and the murderer of more people than all the other groups put together.

Meanwhile, Erbil Airport, the main base for the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq has been closed again for 2 days until Tuesday night on orders of the Iraqi Government, to allow the overflight of Russian missiles from ships in the Caspian Sea.

There is also an unconfirmed report that a Russian cruise missile has hit one of Assad’s defence factories at Al-Safira near Aleppo.

Russia additionally continues to get up Turkey’s nose after the downing of a Russian jet by the Turkish Air Force. On Thursday in a “state of the nation” address in Russia, Putin said, “Allah only knows, I suppose, why they did it. And probably, Allah has decided to punish the ruling clique in Turkey by taking their mind and reason.

“But, if they expected a nervous or hysterical reaction from us, if they wanted to see us become a danger to ourselves as much as to the world, they won’t get it. … We are not going to rattle the sabre. But, if someone thinks they can commit a heinous war crime, kill our people and get away with it, suffering nothing but a ban on tomato imports, or a few restrictions in construction or other industries, they’re delusional. We’ll remind them of what they did, more than once. They’ll regret it. We know what to do.”

Immediately after the broadcast Russia cancelled a major gas pipeline project to Turkey, leaving millions of dollars worth of specialised pipes designed to go under the Black Sea sitting uselessly on the dockside.

SYRIA NEWS

Soldier With Missile Launcher Stands on Deck of Russian Ship Off Turkish Coast

Turkey also reacted on Sunday, summoning the Russian ambassador to Ankara to complain of “provocation” after pictures appeared of a Russian landing ship, the Caesar Kunikov, passing through the Bosphorus near Istanbul on Friday with a soldier apparently standing on deck holding a shoulder held ManPad type missile launcher.

Why he would need to do this, other than to provoke a reaction, is unclear.

(EDITOR: When I first saw these pictures they looked staged and Photoshopped to me, but my Turkish correspondents, some of whom took the pictures, assure me they are real.

As I said at he time, perhaps they had orders to look out for Erdogan!)

In Homs province, reports say that Russia has launched its first airstrikes from its new airbase at Shayrat not far from Palmyra (EDITOR: Perhaps they are the ones that got lost and bombed Assad’s base at Deir Ez-Zour by mistake?), while from Damascus it is reported that a new contingent of Iranian Shiite militia has been flown in from Basra in southern Iraq.

From Hama province comes this video of the terrifying moment Assad’s troops launch a barrage of rockets against Opposition fighters on Al-Ghab Plain, here:

In Aleppo province various battles are still underway, though the ceasefire between the Syrian Democratic Forces and other Free Syrian Army units appears to be holding with just occasional outbreaks of gunfire.

This has allowed the northern Aleppo Opposition to concentrate more on fighting back the Islamic State (IS), even on Friday night taking back 3 villages around Yarn and a strip of territory along the border with Turkey running towards the east.

However, the Opposition fighters now say that many of their attacks are at night to avoid the added hazard of bombs dropped by the Russian jets on behalf of Assad.

South of Aleppo city, pro-Assad Shiite militia have seized Qal’ajiyah but lost 3 tanks in battles with Opposition fighters this morning, Monday. This footage shows one of the tanks destroyed recently with a TOW missile – watch out for the man on the roof trying to put out the potential fire, HERE:

In Daraa province, where things have slowed down after an unsuccessful attempt to capture Daraa city, a coalition of 12 Opposition forces in the Southern Front announced a new campaign to capture Sanamayn where the Assad regime bases its 7th and 9th Divisions.

Their campaign has been strengthened this time by another coalition of a dozen local tribes who are being backed, financed and armed by Jordan under the name of The Army of Free Tribes.

The current thrust is to take over the artillery base at Jidyah, from where the regime regularly shells the Opposition forces in the surrounding area. Sanamayn is a major defensive front for the regime on the road between Daraa province and Damascus.

Fighting around the Jidyah base has so far not gone terribly well with a number of Opposition casualties reported  on Friday, but further more positive news is awaited. You can read more, HERE:

And from the good people of Kanfranbel in Idlib province comes their comment on John Kerry’s recent proposals, here:

SYRIA NEWS

Message to John Kerry About “Working with Assad and Russians”

ROJAVA UPDATE 165 – YPG CONDUCTS OPERATION ACROSS EUPHRATES TO JARABLOUS TO SILENCE ISLAMIC STATE MORTARS:

The YPG reported on Sunday that last Friday evening a combined force of the YPG/YPJ conducted an operation across the Euphrates River to the west bank to an area south of IS-held Jarablous.

SYRIA NEWS

Picture of the Year 2015 in Germany – The Liberation of Kobane

The operation was to try and put a stop to the regular barrage of IS mortar shells that has been falling on an almost daily basis on towns and villages in Kobane Canton for the last month.

An IS vehicle used to transport ammunition was targeted and destroyed along with its occupants and 2 other vehicles were damaged. IS casualties at this point are unknown.

At around midday on Saturday IS tried once again to attack the southern part of Kobane Canton near Ain Issa. Further details of the battle still awaited.

Also on Saturday, the Al-Nusra Front (ANF) attacked YPG positions in the Kurdish neighbourhood of Sheikh Maqmoud with mortars once again, this time injuring 4 civilians.

The YPG retaliated driving back ANF, injuring or killing 2 of their men.

A video of YPG operations in Rojava can be seen, HERE:

Currently the YPG and the Syrian Democratic Front are between 30 and 40 kilometres from Raqqah where Coalition airstrikes killed at least 35 x IS Jihadists and wounded many more according to medical sources in the city.

15 civilians are also reported killed in the strikes as IS is now establishing its operational buildings in among residential districts.

This video from CNN compliments an earlier written report about the all-female units now fighting IS.

KOBANE CHRISTMAS APPEAL: Kobane city this last week saw the start of the first polio vaccination campaign since the liberation from IS and an appeal is underway to raise Euros 25,000 to buy a school bus to transport the smallest children to school.

Currently there is only one pre-school in Kobane and many children have to walk an hour each way to attend. A bus would mean that the number of young children attending would go up from 150 to 500.

The appeal aims to raise the Euros 25,000 in 25 days. Euros 21,500 so far, 20 days to go and if you would like to contribute this Christmas (EDITOR: I have!), (both USD, Euros and other currencies accepted by credit, debit card via PayPal at genuine site) go HERE:

Lastly, tomorrow, Tuesday, Saudi Arabia is hosting a 3 day meeting of Syrian Opposition groups in Riyadh to hopefully come up with a joint approach to any future negotiations with the Assad Government or the UN in finding a solution to the war in Syria.

Sadly though, it appears to be a gathering of Sunni groups only and no invitation has been extended to the YPG or its political arm the PYD despite indicating that they “would love to attend”. You can read more, HERE:

Mishaal: The Palestinians and the occupation cannot coexist

DOHA, (PIC)– Head of Hamas’s political bureau Khaled Mishaal has said that the Palestinian people have proven with their blood that they can never coexist with the occupation and settlement.

In a special interview conducted last night by al-Jazeera satellite channel, the Palestinian leader called on the world to anticipate more initiatives and surprises from an occupied people aspiring for freedom.

“We need the intifada (uprising) to curb the settlers, stop the attacks on Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque, and restore the Palestinian cause’s prestige,” Mishaal said.

He stressed the need for reaching an understanding on a common strategy for the intifada and how to run it on the ground, describing it as “a historic moment and a merit that should be agreed upon nationally.”

The Hamas official underlined that the current intifada frustrated the Israeli government’s plan to divide the Aqsa Mosque after the failure of all political initiatives, warning that abandoning the option of intifada and resistance would end the entire national project.

He added that the intifada brought the Palestinian cause back to the regional and international arenas and unified the Palestinian people inside and outside occupied Palestine.

He also emphasized the importance of providing the intifada with an official support from the Palestinian political leadership, which he said should take a decision allowing its security apparatuses and institutions to take part in it.

“I am telling the [Palestinian Authority] leadership. This is a historic moment. This is a merit. The intifada is backed by the people, but it also needs protection, backup and a decision from it,” he said.

He also called on Fatah faction to actively participate in the intifada, asserting that it is against the occupation and not the Palestinian Authority.

Mishaal affirmed that his Movement would go on with the intifada until the end. “We have engaged in the intifada and we will be there till the end. We also invite everyone to take part.”

Commenting on recent threats by Benjamin Netanyahu about his government’s ability to demolish the Aqsa Mosque, the Hamas official said that anyone who dares destroy the Mosque would only accelerate Israel’s demise.

He finally urged the Arab and Muslim leaders and governments to assume their responsibilities and protect the Aqsa Mosque, affirming that the Palestinian people defend themselves on their own land, and their resistance is completely different from terrorism.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Israel stops Beit Ummar villagers from building homes, working land

AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– The Israeli occupation army on Sunday ordered, with no stated reason, Palestinian citizens to stop construction and cultivation works on their own plots of land in Beit Ummar town, north of al-Khalil city.

Anti-settlement activist Mohamed Awad told Quds Press that employees from the civil administration of the Israeli army handed brothers Issa and Anwar Alami notices ordering them to halt construction works at their new homes in Beit Ummar town.

Another resident of the town named Safwan Baragith was handed a similar notice, Awad added.

The civil administration also handed Yousuf Abu Ayyash a notice ordering him to stop working his three-dunum agricultural land in Wad al-Arab area of the town.

(Source / 07.12.2015)

Sabra: Riyadh Conference a Step in the Right Direction

Member of the Syrian Coalition George Sabra said that the Riyadh conference, which will begin tomorrow in the Saudi capital, is a step in the right direction. Sabra expressed hope that the conference will lay the ground for a political solution to the crisis.

“We are hopeful the outcome of conference will meet the Syrian people’s aspirations, especially that Saudi Arabia has made enormous efforts in this regard,” Sabra said. He stressed that the Syrian people depend on the substantial support Saudi Arabia provided since the beginning of the revolution.

“The conference provides the Syrian opposition with a chance to lay out a unified vision of the solution, especially in light of the Iranian occupation and the Russian aggression against Syria.”

Sabra called on participants to adhere to the Geneva I Communique “so that we can formulate a real political solution that meets the aspirations of the Syrian people and ensures the departure of Bashar al-Assad and his ruling elite.”

(Source: Syrian Coalition + Al-Ekhbariya)