Egypt allows routine medical check for Morsi at his expense

Egypt's ousted president Mohamed Morsi, wearing an orange uniform while in prison on 18th August 2016 [Anadolu Agency/Facebook]

Egypt’s ousted president Mohamed Morsi, wearing an orange uniform while in prison on 18th August 2016

An Egyptian court yesterday allowed a comprehensive medical examination of former President Mohamed Morsi at his own expense.

The medical check-up results will be presented to the court at its next hearing on 3 December.

During a session of his trial in Cairo, Morsi asked the court to allow him to have a comprehensive medical examination at a private hospital at his own expense, where adequate equipment will be available for specialist tests.

“If this is not possible, I ask that the examination be conducted in a government hospital with the necessary means for these medical examinations,” he said, noting to the deterioration of his health, especially after he was diagnosed with diabetes.

Morsi is being tried on several charges including espionage and insulting the judiciary.

Read: Morsi tells lawyer of threats to his life

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Unemployment in Gaza and the urgent need to take action

Palestinian children can be seen doing their homework in their makeshift home in one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Gaza

As the United Nations launched its Sustainable Development Agenda for 2030, and celebrated at the Humanitarian Summit the halving of extreme poverty in the world, we got slapped with a shocking report from the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics on the situation of unemployment in the Gaza Strip. Instead of witnessing an improvement in poverty and unemployment rates, we are seeing extremely high levels of unemployment which strikes the dreams of young Gazans and shatters their hopes.

According to the report, which deals with the situation of the labour force in Palestine for the third quarter of 2017, there are 243,800 unemployed people in the Gaza Strip, representing 46.6 per cent of the total unemployed Palestinians, where the highest unemployment rate was amongst 2-24-year-olds at 46.9 per cent.

This unemployment rate is the highest in 14.5 years. According to the eighth objective of the United Nations Plan, “promoting sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”, the continuing lack of decent work opportunities is leading to the disappearance of the basic social agreement upon which democratic societies are based, which is the need for participation of everyone in progress.

Read: Gaza between the carrot and the stick

This is alarming policymakers and international institutions, including United Nations agencies, and calling their attention to the worsening crisis and expected rising of the unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of 2017.

The first objective of the sustainable development plan is to eradicate poverty in all its forms everywhere. Incidentally, this goal was accompanied by an image of a Palestinian child and his family in one of the Palestinian camps to denote poverty and need.

Gaza’s poverty rates have been unprecedented as a direct result of a blockade of more than 11 years and an on-going aggression that has been repeated three times in less than six years. And now, a new confrontation is looming under the recent Israeli provocations against the Gaza Strip.

Read: Gaza receives first PA medical aid shipment in 8 months

Gaza has no natural resources, 5,500 of its industrial facilities, which employed thousands of workers, were destroyed, and people from Gaza have no access to outside markets or foreign investments due to the unstable political situation. This means that Gaza cannot address the issues of poverty, unemployment or food insecurity alone. It needs united and integrated efforts in regards to the fight against poverty and the reduction of unemployment in accordance with the goals set by the United Nations and taking into account the Palestinian situation.

And because Gaza needs action and is thirsty for results, and because flowers bloom because of the rain and not thunder, everyone is invited to take action before Gaza explodes in the face of everyone and before its social integrity collapses. If that happens, the negative effects will reach everyone and no one will be spared.

What is required is emergency relief through temporary employment programmes to target the largest number of workers and graduates who have spent the best years of their lives waiting for an opportunity to achieve self-fulfilment, to start a family, to contribute towards the needs of their families and to reduce the economic burden on their parents.

Those who will move in the direction of emergency relief must not overlook the need for development which can improve the economic situation through economic empowerment programmes and can achieve sustainable development. And due to the importance of temporary employment programmes in their emergency form, and the economic empowerment fund in its developmental form, international institutions and specialists should take the initiative and launch a donor conference in which relevant institutions and interested governments can discuss issues and ways to intervene urgently to improve the living conditions in the Gaza Strip. Interventions should be based on the principle of partnership in humanitarian action and an integration of roles.


Relevant Palestinian parties must benefit from the thirty-third meeting of the ministers of COMCEC (Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) which will be held in Istanbul this month. There has already been a request for convening a meeting to discuss the humanitarian situation in Palestine in general and the Gaza Strip in particular. The meeting will discuss ways to reduce poverty and the economic developments, especially in the OIC countries.

In the midst of talking about the need and the necessity of interventions, we must remember that all steps remain below the required level without the complete lifting of the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip, without achieving freedom of movement for its citizens, and without a complete end to the occupation, which impedes the reconstruction process and disrupts investment opportunities and economic development.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Israeli forces detain Palestinian activist, 2 family members, from Bilin

Protest Bilin Rahma detained

Palestinian flag at a protest in Bilin. 12th of June 2015

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained an internationally recognized non-violence Palestinian activist early Monday morning, along with two of his family members, from the central occupied West Bank, according to official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency.Wafa reported that Abdullah Abu Rahma, the coordinator for the popular resistance committee in the Ramallah-area village of Bilin, was detained from his home by Israeli forces, along with two of his family members, identified by Wafa as Muhammad Adib Abu Rahma and Ahmad Muhammad Abu Rahma.According to Wafa, Abdullah Abu Rahma has been detained several times by Israeli forces in the past for his non-violence activities in the village.Bilin is one of the most active Palestinian villages in peaceful organized opposition against Israeli policies, as residents have protested every Friday for 11 consecutive years, and have often been met with tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets, and stun grenades from Israeli forces.According to prisoners’ rights group Addameer, 6,198 Palestinians were detained by Israel as of October. The group has estimated that some 40 percent of Palestinian men will be detained by Israel at some point in their lives.Rights groups have long criticized Israel for arbitrary detentions of Palestinian activists in an attempt to stifle Palestinian political life.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Family Of Youngest Detainee Appeals For His Release

20 NOV
3:04 PM

The family of Waleed Riyad ad-Daly, 14, held by Israel in Ofer prison, voiced an appeal to various human rights and legal groups, calling for the release of their detained child, who was also injured in his arm when the soldiers abducted him along with two other children, in late September 2017.

The child’s father, Riyad ad-Daly, said that the soldiers shot his boy in his arm, after they and undercover officers invaded Biddu village, northwest of occupied Jerusalem, before shooting and violently assaulting the child, and abducted him along with two other children, identified as Yazid Akram Hmeidan, 15, and Hamada Jamal Abu ‘Eid, 16.

He added that his child is now the youngest detainee in Israeli prison, and is in urgent need for specialized medical treatment, and added that Jamal was sent to court 13 times since then; each time the judges extended his detention.

Jamal, along with Yazid and Hamada, are accused of throwing stones at the army’s jeeps, after the soldiers invaded their town.

It is worth mentioning that the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS), the al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Ad-Dameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, and the Palestinian Detainees’ Committee, have recently stated that the Israeli army abducted 431 Palestinians, including 98 children, this past September.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Report: “Israeli Soldiers Killed 14 Palestinian Children This Year”

19 NOV
11:47 AM

Marking the World Children’s Day (November 20th) the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) has reported that Israeli soldiers have killed 14 Palestinian children since the beginning of this year, while 300 children are still imprisoned by Israel.

It said that, according to statements and official data by the Palestinian Detainees’ Committee, Israeli soldiers have abducted 15000 Palestinians, including 4000 children, since the al-Quds Intifada started in late October 2015.

The PCBS added that Israel was still holding 300 children captive, facing bad treatment, torture and constant violations, spending their childhoods in prisons, without even the right to education.

It quoted detailed data and statistics by Defense for Children International (DCI) confirming that Israeli soldiers have killed 14 Palestinian children, since the beginning of this year, until October 31, compared to 35 children killed by Israeli fire in 2016.

It added that three of the slain children, killed in 2017, were 13-15 years of age, and eleven were 16-17 years of age.

Full Release: On the Eve of the International children Day, 20/11/2017

(Source / 20.11.2017)

In Light of Forced Displacement Policy in Area “C”, Israeli Forces Issue military Orders to Evacuate Pope Mountain Bedouin Community, East of Occupied Jerusalem

19 NOV
3:31 PM

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns the Israeli Government’s decision to evacuate Palestinian Bedouin population from the Pope Mountain Community in al-Ezzariya village, east of occupied Jerusalem, for the interest of settlement projects in the area.

At the time PCHR emphasizes the legal status of East Jerusalem as a city under occupation, PCHR stresses that these Israeli measures are part of the Israeli government’s plans to create a Jewish Majority in the occupied city, expand its administrative boundaries, and connect its settlements established in the east of Jerusalem with the city in order to cut off communications between the north of the West Bank and its south. PCHR calls upon the international community to take immediate action to stop implementing this serious plan and end all settlement activities in occupied Jerusalem.

According to PCHR’s investigations, late on Thursday evening, 16 November 2017, Israeli forces accompanied with staff of the Organization and Construction Department in the Israeli Civil Administration moved into the Pope Mountain Bedouin Community near al-Izzariyah village, east of occupied Jerusalem and adjacent to “Ma’ale Adumim” settlement, and fixed orders to evacuate the houses and leave the area as a preamble to displace them.

‘Attalla Mazar’ah, Head of Services Committee in Pope Mountain Community, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the Community residents, comprised of 57 families, including 320 individuals, half of them are children, were surprised with the Civil Administration staffs under the Israeli forces’ protection moving into the area.

The staffs installed iron rods in the ground and fixed military orders along with maps. ‘Attalla mentioned that the Pope Mountain has been targeted by the Israeli forces because its residents live within the E1Settlement zone.

The area is inhabited by Palestinians from Arab al-Jahalin, who arrived at the area following their displacement from Negev in 1948. It should be noted that this order was signed by the military commander of the area on 01 November 2017.

The order says, “After 8 days of issuing this declaration, each owner of property in the area included in this declaration shall evacuate their property according to this order.” This order also bans any construction works in the defined area, and no persons are allowed to enter or bring any property to the area for construction works.

The distribution of these military orders came few hours after the Israeli Prime Minister’s decision, Benjamin Netanyahu, ordering the Palestinian Bedouins living in communities to evacuate their houses in the vicinity of occupied Jerusalem, near Street No. (1), moving towards the Dead Sea.

The Israeli media stated that the decision was issued on Thursday at the end of a meeting held between Benjamin Netanyahu and representatives of so-called “Jerusalem Perimeter Forum” and the Binyamin Regional Council. The Israeli media clarified that the meeting was about the tents and mobile dwellings inhabited by the Palestinian Bedouins in Palestinian areas overlooking Jerusalem between ” Ma’ale Adumim” and “Mitzpeh Yericho” settlements, which were classified as “illegal outposts” by the Israeli authorities.

PCHR condemns the Israeli forces’ attacks against this Bedouin community and other Bedouin communities in the vicinity of Jerusalem. PCHR also believes this attack is part of the forced displacement crimes committed by the Israeli forces in areas classified as Areas C according to the Oslo Accords signed between the Israel Government and Palestinian Liberation Organization on 13 September 1993, in favor of settlement expansion projects.

PCHR reminds the international community of the Israeli forces’ violation of the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, in particular Article 33, which prohibits collective punishment, and Article 147, which stipulates that extensive destruction and appropriation of property are not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly and are grave breaches amounting to war crimes according to Article 85, paragraph 5 of Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions. Moreover, these crimes are a violation of Article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which stipulates that the States Parties has an obligation to ensure each person’s right to an adequate standard of living for him and his family, including adequate food, clothing and housing.

In light of the above, PCHR:

  1. Calls upon the international community to intervene in order to force Israel to stop all its settlement activities in the oPt, particularly in East Jerusalem;
  2. Emphasizes East Jerusalem is an occupied territory, and all the measures taken by the Israeli authorities following the 1967 occupation of it do not change this legal status;
  3. Confirms that all Israeli settlement activities in occupied East Jerusalem are considered as a war crime, according to the international humanitarian law;
  4. Calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligation under Article 1 to ensure respect for the present Convention in all circumstances; and
  5. Believes that the conspiracy of silence practiced by the international community has encouraged Israel to commit more violations of international human rights and international humanitarian laws, including efforts to create a Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Palestinian official assassinated in Ain al-Hilweh camp

Mahmoud Hjeir murdered

A Palestinian official from the Arab Liberation Front was shot dead by an unknown gunman in Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon on Monday evening.

Media sources reported that a masked individual opened fire at Mahmoud Hjeir near the vegetable market’s intersection in Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp. Hjeir died immediately after receiving a gunshot to the head.

Eyewitnesses reported heightened tension and panic in the vegetable market and the surrounding area following the assassination.

National and Islamic forces in Sidon in southern Lebanon condemned the attack which, they believe, is aimed at harming the security of Ain al-Hilweh camp and the spirit of understanding that has recently started to prevail.

They said that the investigation committee of the Palestinian joint security force has started an investigation into the incident to unveil those behind the attack and hold them accountable.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Israeli court to issue verdict over settlement bid near Aqsa Mosque

Settlement bid

A hearing is expected to be held on Monday by Israel’s Central Court in Occupied Jerusalem to decide on appeals filed by the Wadi Hilweh Committee, in Silwan, over an Israeli settlement project near al-Aqsa Mosque.

A few years ago, the Wadi Hilweh Committee objected Israel’s so-called Kedim settlement project, slated to be carried out in front of holy al-Aqsa Mosque. In 2015, the bid failed to receive official approbation.

In March 2016 a new committee approved the settlement scheme, turning down all appeals submitted to the Israeli courts and authorities to cancel the plan.

Lawyer Sami Ersheid has proceeded with another objection to Israel’s Central Court. The latter will decide on the case on Monday.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Palestinian facilities threated with demolition in Negev

Demolition treat Negev

The Israel Lands Administration (ILA) issued, on Monday evening, new demolition orders against a number of Palestinian facilities in Negev, south of Israel, including a mosque.

A state of tension has prevailed among local residents who protested against the demolition orders.

Owners of the notified residential facilities declared in a joint statement their total rejection to the Israeli ongoing attempts to displace them from their homeland.

(Source / 20.11.2017)

Palestinian youth arrested, another summoned by PA forces

Pal youth arrested by PA

The Palestinian Authority (PA) forces in the occupied West Bank arrested a Palestinian youngster and summoned another to questioning.

Palestinian young man Othman Nasasra was arrested by the PA Preventive Forces in Nablus after he turned himself in for questioning on Sunday morning.

Palestinian man Khader al-Sarkaji has also been held in a PA lock-up in Nablus for the fourth day running.

Meanwhile, the PA Preventive Forces in Tulkarem summoned Haythem Shahada for interrogation on Monday morning.

At the same time, ex-prisoner Murad Fatash has been locked up in a PA detention center in Salfit for the eighth consecutive day.

Palestinian student Idris Hasan, enrolled at Quds University, has also been detained at a Ramallah-based PA penitentiary for 13 days in a row.

In the meantime, the PA intelligence in al-Khalil province continues to withhold the identity documents and mobile phone of ex-prisoner Omar al-Natah for the third week. Al-Natah has also been forced to show up at the PA intelligence headquarters in the city every Tuesday and keeps him there the whole day with no reason given for the procedure.

(Source / 20.11.2017)