UPDATE: 28 Palestinians Kidnapped from West Bank, Jerusalem

Israeli forces kidnapped 28 Palestinians, including nine minors, from across the West Bank districts overnight, according to local and security sources.

Arrest 4 PPN

In Tulkarem city and the nearby Shwakeh Neighborhood, armed Israeli soldiers abducted four Palestinians, including two 18-year-old twin sisters.

According to WAFA correspondence, a large military force reportedly raided a number of Palestinian homes, searching it thoroughly, before detaining two twin sisters identified as Diana and Nadya Khwaled, 18.

Meanwhile, local Hamza Hammed was kidnapped from the Shwakeh neighborhood, to the north of the city, whereas Mohammed Salman was taken from the southern part of the city.

In Hebron, forces took three Palestinians, including a minor, during a raid into the town of Tarqumiya to the west.

The detainees were identified as Ala’a Dababseh, 24, Ra’ef Qabajha, 24, and Hassan Mrqatan, 16.

Forces also abducted a 15-year-old student near Abu Irish Israeli military checkpoint, in the Old City of Hebron. Local sources reported that Osama Abu Qwader, 15, was taken following clashes that broke out with Israeli troops near the school zone in Hebron’s old city.

Furthermore, forces took six Palestinians from the Hebron area. They were identified as Younis Abu Rmeleh, 19, Bilal Ashour, 19, Hamza Qawasmi, 19, Ibrahim Sha’rawi, 21, Hamdan Ewaidat, 23.

In the meantime, Israeli soldiers broke into three Palestinian-owned homes in the Ramallah town of Silwad, interrogating occupants and thoroughly searching all three homes. However no arrests were reported. Forces were said to have used police dogs while searching the homes.

Forces also kidnapped four minors aged 17 from the town of Kharbatha al Misbah to the west of Ramallah. They were identified as Mohammed Kayed, Mohammed al-Habal, and Qosay and Mohammed Harfoosh.

Three more Palestinians were taken from the Ramallah area of Beit Doqo, including an injured local. They were identified as Mohammed Marrar, 19, Ali Hasan, 21, and Dawood Rayyan, 34.

In the Jenin area, armed soldiers took two locals identified as Hashem Shalabi, 38, and Fadi Za’rour, 30.

In Jerusalem, police kidnapped six Palestinians, including four children. They were identified as Mansour Salim, 18, and his brother Mahmoud, 16, in addition to Mohammed Abu farha, 17, Ibrahim al-Rajbi, 13, Ahmad Ghaith, 12, and Ishaq Ghtit, 23.

The Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs (CPA) said, on Tuesday, that at least 6,830 Palestinians were detained by Israeli troops in the occupied Palestinian Territory since the beginning of the year 2015, marking the highest rate of daily arrests in five years.

It said 3.285 Palestinians were detained in the past three months alone since the beginning of violent unrest in early October.

To be noted, the Palestinian Detainees and Ex-Detainees Committee Studies and Documentation Unit said in a report that Israel has detained a total of 5,934 children over the past five years.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Israel arrests Palestinian security officer at military checkpoint

Palestinian Authority Security Forces

Israeli forces stationed at the Beit Furik checkpoint arrested Ibrahim Khatatbeh when he had stopped at the checkpoint [file photo of members of the Palestinian Authority Security Force]

Israeli occupation forces arrested a General Intelligence security officer affiliated to the Palestinian Authority at a military checkpoint on Tuesday. The checkpoint was to the east of Nablus in the occupied West Bank.

Media activist Alaa Hanani said that the Israeli forces stationed at the Beit Furik checkpoint arrested Ibrahim Khatatbeh when he had stopped at the checkpoint. Speaking to Quds Press, Hanani said that Khatatbeh was detained following an inspection of his vehicle. He was transferred to Israel’s Hawarah detention site in southern Nablus.

A number of incidents happened on Tuesday, with Israeli forces raiding various areas in the West Bank, arresting nine people and clashing with Palestinian students.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Report: 12.37 Millon Palestinians Worldwide

In a report issued on Wednesday, by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statics (PCBS), the projected number of Palestinians in the world was estimated at 12.37 million, of whom 4.75 million are living in Palestine, 1.47 million in Israel, 5.46 million in Arab countries, and around 685,000 in foreign countries.


Israeli numbers will reach 6.34 million. However, by 2017, the total number of Palestinians and Israelis in occupied Palestine is predicted to equal out.

The report indicated, according to Al Ray Palestinian Media Agency, that there is an increase in the population of Palestinians in the world at large, noting that more than one-third are in the Gaza Strip.

The projected number of Palestinians living in Palestine, at the end of 2015, is 4.75 million; around 2.90 million are residing in the West Bank and 1.85 million are in the Gaza Strip. Palestinian refugees make up 42.8% of the Palestinian population in Palestine; 27.1% of them are in the West Bank and 67.3% are in the Gaza Strip.

The report also indicated a decline in the fertility rate during 2011-2013 to 4.1 births, compared with 6.0 births in 1997. In the Gaza Strip, the rate was 4.5 births compared to 3.7 births in the West Bank, during 2011-2013.

It also pointed to a decrease in the average household size, which was 5.2 people in 2014, compared to 6.1 in 2000; 4.9 people in the West Bank and 5.7 in Gaza.

The crude birth rate was determined, for 2015, to be 31.9 births for every 1,000 people in Palestine; 29.0 in the West Bank, compared to 36.3 in Gaza. The rate is expected to decline to 29.0 by 2020. The crude death rate among Palestinians was 3.6 deaths for every 1,000 people in Palestine, for 2015; 3.7 in the West Bank, compared to 3.4 in Gaza Strip. The rate is expected to decline to 3.4 by 2020.

The statics showed that the Palestinian population in Israeli-occupied Palestine is youthful. The number of Palestinians living in Israel is 1.47 million, at the end of 2015, and of whom about 34.8% are aged below 15 years, compared to 4.2% aged 65 years and over, for the year 2014.

The report also indicates that the fertility rate among Palestinians in Israel is higher than it is among Jews. The total fertility rate in 2014, among Palestinian women living in Israel, was 3.2 births, compared to 3.1 births among Jewish women. The average Palestinian household size in Israel was averaged at 4.7 people. The crude birth rate of Palestinians in Israel exceeded 23.8 births for every 1,000 people.

The report concluded that the number of Palestinians in historical Palestine will exceed the number of Jews, over time. It noted that the total number of Palestinians in historical Palestine will reach 6.22 million by the end of 2015. There were 6.22 million Jews at the end of 2014, according to estimates by the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics, and the number is expected to reach 6.34 million Jews by the end of 2015. The number of Palestinians and Jews is predicted to be equal before the end of 2017. However, the number of Palestinians in historical Palestine, at this rate, will likely total 7.13 million compared to 6.96 million Jews, by the end of 2020.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

24 shot, injured by Israeli forces in clashes after funeral in Abu Dis

A Palestinian youth hurls a stone at Israeli occupation forces following a weekly demonstration against the expropriation of Palestinian land by Israel, on Dec.20, 2013 in the northern West Bank village of Kfar Qaddum

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Clashes broke out late Tuesday in Abu Dis following a funeral held for a Palestinian killed earlier this month, whose body was held by Israeli authorities for 26 days.Locals told Ma’an that 24 Palestinians were shot and injured by rubber-coated steel bullets while 19 others suffered from severe tear gas inhalation when clashes erupted between locals and Israeli military forces.Hani Halbiya, a spokesperson of a local popular resistance committee, told Ma’an that Israeli authorities handed over the body of Mazin Hasan, 37, near the town of al-Eizariya.Palestinian Red Crescent medics transferred the body to the Abu Dis medical center, where the funeral procession set off to Ureiba’s family home before mourners carried his body to the local cemetery for burial.An Israeli army spokesperson did not have immediate information on Tuesday’s clashes.Ureiba’s body was one of three to be returned by Israeli authorities Tuesday evening. The bodies of Palestinians killed while carrying out attacks on Israelis have been withheld in line with a decision made in October by Israel’s security cabinet to return the bodies on a case-by-case basis.The practice has not been used in such frequency since the Second Intifada, according to Israeli rights group Hamoked.Ureiba, 37, was shot and killed on Dec. 3 after opening fire on Israeli soldiers stationed near the Hizma military checkpoint north of Jerusalem.According to reports from the Israeli army following the attack, an Israeli soldier was shot in the hand during the attack.A 47-year-old Palestinian bystander was shot and critically injured when Israeli forces opened fire on Ureiba.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Resheq: Israel prevents autopsy to cover up crimes against Palestinians

DOHA, (PIC)– Attempts to prevent families of slain Palestinians from carrying out postmortem autopsy aim at acquitting the Israeli occupation from crimes committed against the Palestinians, political bureau member of Hamas, Ezzet Resheq, said Wednesday.

“Most of the Palestinians slain by the Israeli occupation army were killed in cold-blood,” Resheq said. “Only autopsy would corroborate such facts and criminalize the real murderers.”

Resheq called on the Palestinian Authority to never yield in to Israeli conditions for handing over the bodies of slain Palestinians to their families.

The Hamas leader further pushed for documenting the Israeli crimes against Palestinian anti-occupation youth and impeaching the criminals.

Over recent days, a number of Palestinian families refused to succumb to Israeli conditions to bury their slain sons and daughters without carrying out postmortem autopsy.

The families of the killed Palestinians face tough conditions set by the Israeli occupation in return for the bodies of their dead sons and daughters, which some have accepted while others have rejected, while the international community remains silent regarding this inhumane Israeli practice.

One condition set by the Israeli authorities is that families receive the bodies and bury them during the night, which prevents the family from conducting an independent autopsy to figure out the cause of death.

In many cases, Palestinian families are also forced to sign a number of documents written in the Hebrew language, which they do not understand.

Some few days earlier, the al-Jazeera Net news site quoted a number of Palestinian families as reporting that the bodies of their killed sons and daughters were too frozen for immediate autopsy and, thus, require a long time to be dissolved.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Palestinian rushed to hospital after Israeli sodliers unleash dog attack

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– A Palestinian ex-prisoner was rushed to hospital on Tuesday after an Israeli occupation patrol stormed his family home and unleashed an untamed dog on its inhabitants.

The Ad-Dameer Institution for Human Rights said in a statement the Israeli occupation forces stormed the family home of 26-year-old ex-prisoner Muayad Makhlouf, in northern Occupied Jerusalem, and set a dog attack, causing him serious wounds.

The casualty was evacuated to the Palestine Medical Complex after the dog bit his left hand.

Muayad was later quoted by the Ad-Dameer group as stating that over 15 Israeli soldiers, escorted by an undomesticated dog, broke into his family home. The dog kept biting his hand several times and for over five minutes.

Muayad said the occupation soldiers turned blind eyes and deaf ears to his appeals to save him and pull the dog.

The occupation patrol further kidnapped Muayad’s 22-year-old younger brother, Mu’men, and dragged him to an unidentified destination.

Muayad, an ex-prisoner, was kidnapped by the Israeli occupation forces in 2005 and sentenced to nine years in jail before he was released in 2014. He was re-arrested on November 8, 2015 and released a couple of weeks later, during which he had reportedly been subjected to exhausting questioning.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Kuwait To Send Ground Troops To Join Saudi War In Yemen

The conflict has so far killed more than 6,000 people. The U.N. agency for children, UNICEF, has said that nearly half of those killed in the war so far have been civilians, and that 637 of them have been children.

A boy and his sisters watch graffiti artists spray on a wall, commemorating the victims who were killed in Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in Sanaa, Yemen, Monday, May 18, 2015. Saudi-led airstrikes targeting Yemen's Shiite rebels resumed early on Monday in the southern port city of Aden after a five-day truce expired amid talks on the war-torn country's future that were boycotted by the rebels.

A boy and his sisters watch graffiti artists spray on a wall, commemorating the victims who were killed in Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in Sanaa, Yemen, Monday, May 18, 2015

Kuwait will send ground troops to Saudi Arabia as part of their involvement in the ground offensive in Yemen against the Ansarullah rebels, known as Houthis, a local newspaper reported Tuesday citing an unnamed government source.

“Kuwait decided on the participation of its ground forces, represented by an artillery battalion, in operations to strike at positions of Houthi aggression against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas reported Tuesday, citing an informed source.

Sending the troops was approved by the country’s cabinet and will be sent to Saudi Arabia as early as next week. No information was provided about the size of the force. Kuwait is part of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen which kicked off late March and involves more than 10 Saudi regional allies.

However, Kuwait has only been providing air support and if the report is true, Kuwait would become the latest country to provide ground troops to the coalition alongside the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain and Sudan.

Saudi Arabia launched the operation in a bid to reinstate their Yemeni ally, exiled President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi,l after the rebels took control of the capital Sanaa and other parts of the country ousting the Saudi-backed government and forcing Hadi to flee to Riyadh.

Saudi Arabia raises the prices of petrol, electricity & others in new budget. Low oil prices and war in Yemen start to affect the Kingdom — Nervana Mahmoud (@Nervana_1) December 29, 201

The conflict has so far killed more than 6,000 people. The U.N. agency for children, UNICEF, has said that nearly half of those killed in the war so far have been civilians, and that 637 of them have been children.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

Dozens wounded in West Bank clashes between Israeli occupation forces and students

Palestinian school chidren sitting outside the Damascas Gate of the Al-Aqsa Compound

File photo of Palestinian school children sitting outside the Damascas Gate of the Al-Aqsa Compound

Dozens of Palestinians were reported to have been wounded during clashes between Palestinian school students and Israeli occupation forces near schools in the West Bank city of Hebron, Quds Press reported on Tuesday.

Local sources said that the Israeli troops fired tear gas at the students and nearby homes, leading to many casualties suffering from breathing problems. According to the Coordinator of the anti-settlement committee in Bethlehem, Ahmed Salah, the clashes erupted when the Palestinian students were provoked by the Israeli soldiers who were stationed at their school gates.

On Tuesday evening, medical sources said that 24 Palestinians were treated for wounds caused by rubber-coated steel bullets fired by the Israelis in Abu-Dis after a funeral held for a Palestinian killed earlier this month. The body had been held by the Israeli authorities for 26 days.

The sources added that 19 people also suffered breathing problems after tear gas was fired by the Israeli occupation forces at the Palestinians taking part in the funeral.

(Source / 30.12.2015)

PA security forces suppress peaceful Palestinian march in Ramallah

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinian Authority security forces on Wednesday prevented a peaceful Palestinian march in Ramallah’s al-Bireh neighborhood from reaching a checkpoint outside the nearby Beit El illegal Israeli settlement, protesters told Ma’an.

PA forces stopped hundreds of protesters from continuing their march to the Israeli checkpoint by setting up their own flying checkpoints and blockades.
Leading members of the Fatah movement were present at the march, including committee member Sultan Abu al-Einein, as well as PLO executive committee members Wassel Abu Youssef and Jamil Shihadeh. The secretary general of the Arab Liberation Front, Rakad Salem, and the secretary-general of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Qais Abd al-Karim, were also in attendance.

Dozens of youth left the march after Palestinian forces suppressed the protest, and instead headed to an area in al-Bireh near the illegal Israeli settlement of Psegot where protesters clashed with Israeli forces.
In September, the PA came under fire after a local journalist caught PA police forces on camera beating protesters in the street while attempting to prevent youth from protesting in front of a military site behind Israel’s separation wall near the northern entrance of Bethlehem city.
As the video rapidly spread throughout social networks, as well as local and international media, PA officials spoke out against the incident, however protests against the PA and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas went on for several days.
Following the outrage, the PA announced that nine PA officers, including five high-ranking officers, would face disciplinary action over the attack.
(Source / 30.12.2015)

Maleh Calls for Enabling the FSA to End Russian and Iranian Occupation of Syria

Haytham al-Maleh, head of the Syrian Coalition’s legal committee, presented official notes to Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry and to Qatar’s embassy in Cairo calling for stepping up support for the FSA to end the Russian and Iranian occupation of Syria.

In an interview with Al-Bawaba newspaper on Tuesday, Maleh said that “we hope that Saudi Arabia and Qatar respond to our request so that the FSA can expel the invaders from our land.”

Maleh accused the Iranian regime of seeking to destroy Syria which would benefit the Israeli occupation, adding that 70% of Syrian territory was destroyed by Iran and its puppet Bashar al-Assad.

“We need the full support of our Arab brothers as the Syrian people, while defending their revolution, in fact hold the first line of defense for the entire Arab nation. The Russian-Iranian project in Syria must be countered by all means.” Maleh added.

Maleh said that “there is no place for Bashar al-Assad and all the murderers in the transitional period as the initiation of the transitional period means, in effect, the downfall of the Assad regime.”

Furthermore, Maleh said that the agreement reached at the Riyadh conference, which brought together all groups of the armed and political opposition, stated that the rule of Bashar al-Assad and his inner circle should end once a transitional governing body is formed.

Maleh urged the Friends of Syria group to adopt a joint memorandum calling for the UN General Assembly to discuss the situation in Syria and to stop the aerial bombardment. “This move at the UN General Assembly needs to be approved by 130 countries, which is attainable. The situation in Syria is a humanitarian disaster and the international community must move to stop the Russians and the Iranians crimes,” he stressed.

Maleh also presented a memorandum to the Arab League calling for an emergency ministerial meeting to discuss the Russian and Iranian aggression on Syria.

(Source: Syrian Coalition / 30.12.2015)