Israel demolishes 45 Palestinian buildings

Israeli bulldozers demolished 5 Palestinian-owned commercial buildings

Israeli bulldozers demolished five Palestinian-owned commercial buildings in the Haris village, west of the northern occupied West Bank district of Salfit today.

Local resident, Muhammad Suleiman, told Ma’an that Israeli bulldozers demolished five commercial buildings, a laundry place, carpentry workshop, blacksmith workshop, aluminium workshop and greenhouses, under the pretext that the structure was built in “Area C” without the near impossible to obtain Israeli permit.

Suleiman confirmed that the demolished buildings belonged to his three brothers, Fadi, Nadi and Salah.

READ: Israel demolishes 16 Palestinian structures in Shuafat camp

Israel uses the pretext of building without a permit to carry out demolitions of Palestinian-owned homes on a regular basis.

Nearly all Palestinian applications for building permits in “Area C” are denied by the Israeli authorities, forcing communities to build illegally.

Area C, along with East Jerusalem, has been the site of rapid Israeli settlement expansions in contravention of international law, while Israel’s Separation Wall has further divided Palestinian communities and restricted Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza from even visiting what was intended to be their capital.

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Israel allocates $187m in support for settlements near Gaza

Construction work on Israeli settlements [Mahfouz Abu Turk/Apaimages]

Construction work on Israeli settlement unit

The Israeli government has allocated 700 million shekels ($187 million) in support of Israeli Jewish settlers in the illegal settlements near the Gaza Strip, local media reported yesterday.

The Times of Israel reported Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying that this allocation was meant for economic programmes that “strengthen the resilience” of the settlers.

“The resilience of the residents of the Gaza area [settlers] is an important component of national strength,” Netanyahu said at the weekly cabinet meeting, according to the Times of Israel.

He added: “We will invest an additional NIS 700 million in the plan for the welfare of the residents of the area. They are steadfast and we support them.”

READ: Israel illegal settlement councils receive $39m govt. funding

Netanyahu’s office said, “the decision to provide economic assistance includes the establishment of various factories to southern communities adjacent to the Gaza Strip and the development of industrial zones, as well as assistance in education, health, and social welfare.”

Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon said: “We have the responsibility and obligation toward the residents of Sderot and the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip, in light of the difficulties they encounter due to the security situation.”

He added: “The major investment in the residents and businesses in the area over the next two years underscores this commitment.”

More Israeli settlements in Palestine - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Knesset speaker tells settlers Israel must annex the West Bank

Image of Israeli Knesset Speaker, Yuli Edelstein on 13 September 2013 [Yuri Levin/Wikipedia]

Israeli Knesset Speaker, Yuli Edelstein on 13 September 2013

Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein declared on Sunday that Israel should annex the occupied West Bank, speaking to the annual conference of Beit El settlement yeshiva in Manhattan.

According to a report by Arutz Sheva, Edelstein claimed that the Likud-led Israeli coalition government has done “so much for the Land of Israel”.

“The Knesset has already passed important laws to strengthen our safeguards against terrorism, uphold our national dignity, and defend us from our enemies—whether they threaten us with missiles or with boycotts,” Edelstein said.

Edelstein continued: “But there is still much more to do. Above all, we need to extend Israeli sovereignty to Judea and Samaria [the West Bank]”.

READ: Israel politicians urge annexation of West Bank settlements

“To [the illegal Israeli settlements of] Ma’ale Adumim…to Gush Etzion…to Beit El…and to the rest of Judea and Samaria—the Jewish and Israeli heartland.”

“We owe this step to our brothers and sisters who live and work in these communities [settlements],” Edelstein said. “It is our duty to support their pioneering spirit and love of the Land of Israel—and we cannot continue treating them like second-class citizens.”

There has been a 17% increase in illegal settlement construction in the occupied #WestBank in the first year of #US President Donald J. Trump‘s term

Read more:

MEMO infographic by QUAD Business House

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Gaza: 6 sentenced to death for spying for Israel

Qatari officials are seen at the opening ceremony of a court in Gaza on 16 September 2018 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Gaza court on 16 September 2018

A Palestinian military court in Gaza has sentenced six Palestinians to death for spying for Israel, Minister of Interior in Gaza spokesman Iyad Al-Bozom said yesterday.

The court also sentenced eight other defendants to prison for various periods in addition to hard labour, Al-Bozom added.

“The verdicts are a clear message to spies of the [Israeli] occupation,” Al-Bozom said.

Five of the collaborators are to be hanged while the sixth will be shot in the head.

READ: Israel jails 5 Palestinians for spying for Hezbollah

He noted that the one sentenced to be shot in the head is accused of collaborating with a “hostile foreign entity”.

“The security services achieved several successes that narrowed the net around Israel’s collaborators and dissolved a number of their security chains,” Al-Bozom said.

He stressed that the security services had undermined many of planned Israeli operations which would have taken place against Palestinians in Gaza.

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Israel court rules against Gaza father who lost 3 daughters in 2008 war

Gaza father on phone with Israeli TV as tank shells kill his 3 daughters

An Israeli court yesterday ruled against a Palestinian from Gaza whose three daughters were killed by the Israeli army during its 2008 war on the Strip, denying Israel’s responsibility for their deaths.

Izzeldin Abuelaish, a 63-year-old doctor from Jabalia in the north of the Gaza Strip, lost three daughters and a niece during Israel’s 2008-2009 war on the besieged enclave. His story was made famous after he discovered his children had been killed while speaking to an Israeli TV channel, with his suffering broadcast live across the country and later shared widely around the world.

Yet Israel’s Beersheba District Court yesterday ruled that Israel bore no responsibility for the deaths of the four girls, instead blaming “terror groups [for] fighting from within a civilian population and storing weapons in the building where they died,” the Times of Israel reported.

Israeli Justice Shlomo Friedlander said in yesterday’s ruling that Israeli shells hit Abuelaish’s home because “figures on the roof were suspected of acting as lookouts for terror groups and directing fire at IDF forces”. Friedlander continued:

“It is regrettable that the four children who were not involved in the fighting lost their lives. However, this is a very unfortunate side effect of the criminal practice of the terrorist organizations fight[ing] Israel out of a civilian population.”

In the whirlwind of war mistakes and incidents are expected. When the war is carried out of a civilian population, the mistakes may harm the lives of civilians, as unfortunately happened in our case.

Abuelaish’s lawsuit claimed that there was no fighting in the area at the time of the attack on his home, meaning there was no military rationale for it being targeted. His legal team claimed Israel’s shelling was, therefore, a war crime.

READ: Israel injures 13 Palestinians in Gaza solidarity protests

Abuelaish’s daughters – 13-year-old Bessan, 15-year-old Mayar and 20-year-old Aya – as well as his 14-year-old niece Noor, were among 1,390 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces during Israel’s 22-day war, dubbed “Operation Cast Lead”. Israeli human rights organisation B’Tselem estimates that more than half of those killed were civilians.

In an interview with MEMO in 2017, Abuelaish stressed:

I will never accept my daughters as just numbers – it is wrong to call them collateral damage. They are human beings. They have faces. They have names.

Abuelaish explained that, before pursuing a court case, he had tried for many years to get the Israeli government to take responsibility for the death of his daughters. Having worked as an infertility specialist at Tel Hashomer hospital outside Tel Aviv, he tried to use his connections in Israel to achieve recognition of Israel’s guilt, but to no avail. “My efforts fell on deaf ears so I was obliged to pursue this through the courts,” he added.

Yesterday’s decision will come as a severe blow to his hopes of receiving any recognition of Israel’s culpability for his daughters’ deaths. It is not yet clear where Abuelaish will proceed from here or whether he will be able to appeal the court’s ruling.

Abuelaish had intended to donate any compensation granted by the Israeli court to the Daughters for Life Foundation, a charity he founded in honour of his daughters which supports the education of girls from the Middle East, including both Israelis and Palestinians and all religious denominations.

READ: ‘I did nothing to harm Israel,’ says child shot by sniper. ‘I only raised the flag’

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Rashida Tlaib To Head Congressional Delegation To West Bank, Endorses BDS

Representative-elect tells The Intercept she supports boycotting Israel and trip is meant to counter ‘one-sided’ visits funded by pro-Israel group

Democratic Representative-elect Rashida Tlaib plans to lead a delegation of American lawmakers to the West Bank, the congresswoman-to-be has told The Intercept.

Tlaib, a Palestinian-American, told the publication that the delegation will focus on “Israel’s detention of Palestinian children, education, access to clean water, and poverty” and that the goal is “to humanise Palestinians, provide an alternative perspective to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee pushes.”

She also wanted to “highlight the inherent inequality of Israel’s system of military occupation in Palestinian territories, which is similar to what African-Americans in the United States endured in the Jim Crow era.”

The Intercept said Tlaib was “rejecting [the] Israel lobby’s influence over Congress” echoing and that her plan was a “rebuke of a decades-old tradition for newly elected members: a junket to Israel sponsored by the education arm” of AIPAC.

She has no plans to meet with any Israeli or Palestinian officials, said the report.

“I want us to see that segregation and how that has really harmed us being able to achieve real peace in that region,” The Intercept quoted Tlaib as saying . “I don’t think AIPAC provides a real, fair lens into this issue. It’s one-sided. … [They] have these lavish trips to Israel, but they don’t show the side that I know is real, which is what’s happening to my grandmother and what’s happening to my family there.”

According to the Intercept, AIPAC’s education arm has spent $12.9 million on trips to Israel for legislators and staffers over the past decade, trips that the publication called “among the lesser-known traditions for freshman members of Congress.”

Tlaib told The Intercept that she personally supports the movement to boycott Israel. She has previously called on the United States to cut military aid to the country.

Before Tlaib won her primary in August, her campaign represented her as supporting a two-state solution and.

On the eve of the primary, Steve Tobocman, a senior adviser to Tlaib, told Haaretz that she supported a two-state solution.

Representative-elect Ilhan Omar has also come out in support of boycotting Israel in remarks after her election. She has also drawn criticism for calling Israel an “apartheid regime” that had “hypnotised the world” to ignore its “evil” policies.

In November, Tlaib and Omar became the first two Muslim women to be elected to Congress.

(Source / 04.12.2018)

PPS: “Army Abducts 24 Palestinians In The West Bank”

04 DEC
1:02 PM

Israeli soldiers abducted, overnight until morning hours Tuesday, twenty-four Palestinians, from their homes in several parts of the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) has reported.

The soldiers invaded and violently searched dozens of homes in various parts of the West Bank, and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards, before abducting the twenty-four residents.

The Nablus office of the PPS, in northern West Bank, said the soldiers abducted Mohammad Keewan, Sobhi Keewan, Ghazi Sha’er, Amro Shehada, Zohdi Theeb Qawareeq, Nasseer Abu Thabet, and Abada Nizar al-Jamal.

The Palestinians were taken from their homes in Nablus city, in addition to the towns of Awarta, ‘Asira ash-Shamaliya and Beit Dajan.

The army also summoned for interrogation, a former political prisoner, identified as Samir Salim Sharab, from Awarta.

In Bethlehem governorate, the soldiers invaded Beit Sahour city, in addition to Doha and al-Khader towns, and fired many gas bombs and concussion grenades, during ensuing protests.

The soldiers also abducted Mohammad Fayez Salhab, 18, from his home in the al-Karkafa area, in Bethlehem.

In Hebron city, in southern West Bank, the soldiers abducted Mohammad Abdul-Athim Abu Turki, 34, Jawad Shafiq Abu Aisha, Ibrahim Zeidan Rajabi, and Salim Rajabi.

Another Palestinian, identified as Mahmoud Abdul-Afo al-Emla, was taken prisoner from his home in Beit Ola town, northwest of Hebron.

Furthermore, the soldiers abducted two former political prisoners, identified as Abdul-Nasser Nasser Abu Maria, 20, and Qussai Ahmad Abu Hashem, 18, in addition to Amro Arafat Za’aqeeq, 16, and Majdi Mirshid Awad, 14, all from Beit Ummar town, north of Hebron, before moving them to Karmie Tzur illegal colony, south of the town.

In Tubas, in northeastern West Bank, the soldiers abducted Yousef Walweel and Zakariya Oleyyan, from their homes in the al-Far’a refugee camp, south of the city.

In Salfit, in central West Bank, the soldiers abducted a young woman, identified as Tha’era Mousa Qassoul, 24, at the entrance of the nearby Kifl Hares town, while she was on her way to work.

In occupied Jerusalem, the soldiers abducted four Palestinians, identified as Tha’er Abu Khalil, Jaber Ahmad Salaheddin, ‘Assem Nassif Sa’id and Abdul-Rahman Osama Khatib, from their homes in Hizma town, northeast of the city.

In Ramallah, in central West Bank, the soldiers abducted Mohammad Fawzi Shalabi, from his home in the al-Mazra’a ash-Sharqiya town, northeast of the city.

It is worth mentioning that the soldiers killed a mentally disabled man, identified as Husam Abdul-Latif Habali, 22, and injured several others, in Tulkarem city, in northern West Bank.

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Israeli Soldiers Demolish Five Structures In Salfit

04 DEC
10:51 AM

Israeli soldiers invaded, on Tuesday morning, the western area of Hares village, west of the central West Bank city of Salfit, and demolished five agricultural and commercial structures.

Resident Mohammad Suleiman said dozens of soldiers invaded the village at dawn, before using their armored military bulldozers in demolishing the five commercial structures, owned by his brothers.

He added that the demolished structures are owned by his brothers Fadi, Nadi and Saleh Suleiman, and that the army claimed they were built without a permit from the Israeli Civil Administration Office, as they are located in Area C, under full Israeli control, in the occupied West Bank.

The demolished structures were an agricultural hothouse, a laundromat, a carpentry, a blacksmith and aluminum workshops.

Mohammad added that Israel issued the demolition orders just a week ago, informing his brothers that they “have one month to file appeals,” however, the soldiers demolished the properties within seven days.

(Source / 04.12.2018)

Israeli Soldiers Kill A Mentally Disabled Palestinian In Tulkarem

04 DEC
10:25 AM

Dozens of Israeli soldiers invaded, on Tuesday at dawn, Tulkarem refugee camp, and Tulkarem city, in northern West Bank, killed a mentally disabled  Palestinian, and injured several others.

Media sources said the soldiers killed Mohammad Husam Abdul-Latif Habali, 22, from Tulkarem city, and injured another young man, after shooting them with live fire.

They added that the soldiers shot Mohammad, who was mentally disabled, from a very close range, and that he died almost instantly, from gunshot wounds to his head and limbs.

The soldiers also injured several Palestinians with rubber-coated steel bullets, and caused many others to suffer the effects of teargas inhalation.

It is worth mentioning that dozens of soldiers, many of them in jeeps and others on foot, invaded several neighborhoods in the refugee camp, and Tulkarem city, especially in the Western Neighborhood, and fired dozens of live rounds and gas bombs, during ensuing protests.

The soldiers invaded and ransacked many homes, causing excessive damage, and interrogated several Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards.

(Source / 04.12.2018)