PA freezes accounts of NGOs, charities in Gaza

Palestinian children stand next to bags of food aid provided by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees at their family home in the Gaza Strip on 24 January 2018 [Said Khatib/AFP/Getty Images]

The Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO Network) expressed “deep concerns” following the Palestinian Authority’s decision to freeze the accounts of scores of NGOs and charities in the Gaza Strip.

In a statement, a copy of which was sent to MEMO, the PNGO Network warned of the negative consequences of this measure on the workflow of these NGOs and charities in the besieged enclave.

The PNGO Network said that it had received a number of complaints from NGOs and charities in Gaza regarding their inability to access funds as a result of the PA’s actions, stating this would undermine their ability to provide services to those in need and fulfil their mandate.

Banks, it explained, only open accounts for NGOs following approval from the PA.

READ: Israel using fake charities to get security information about Gaza

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

Soldiers Abduct Three Palestinians In Jenin And Ramallah

Israeli soldiers abducted, on Monday at night, two Palestinians in Jenin, in northern West Bank, and one in Ramallah, in the central part of the occupied territory.

Media sources in Jenin said the soldiers abducted a young man, identified as Yazan Sa’id Hamarsha, and a teenage boy, identified as Baha’ Mohammad Ghawadra, while crossing a sudden military roadblock, installed by the soldiers at Kafrit village junction.

Furthermore, the soldiers abducted Mahmoud Ali Zahran, from Deir Abu Mashal village, west of Ramallah, after invading his home and violently searching it, causing damage.

In occupied Jerusalem, the soldiers closed two main roads in Silwan town, south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and prevented the Palestinians from crossing.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 


Ramallah (QNN)- Israeli Shin Bet rearrested a Palestinian Christian prisoner, who has been in critical condition due to Israeli torture, and resent him to interrogation.

Israeli Maariv reported Tuesday that Samer Arbid has woken up from coma at hospital and that the Shin Bet will send him back for interrogation.

Arbid was evacuated to Hadasah hospital two weeks ago due to very critical wounds, he sustained during torture and interrogation. In addition to 11 fractures in his ribs, Arbid has kidney failure and he cannot move his feet.

The Shin Bet claims that Arbid has led a group of resistance fighters, who exploded an explosive device, killing one illegal settlers in a settlement near Ramallah.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

The EU’s conditional aid and suppression of Palestinian rights

The EU does not assist the Palestinians without a price

By Ramona Wadi

The EU can claim to be the biggest donor to the Palestinians, yet it is financing its own agenda, rather than providing the means for Palestinians to demand their legitimate political rights.

The European Union’s incoming Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell has already signalled a continuation of the bloc’s prevailing politics when it comes to Palestine – preserve the two-state compromise by ensuring funding to the Palestinian Authority.

“If anyone helps the Palestinians today and their right to have their own state, that is Europe,” Borrell declared at the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs. The truth is Europe does neither; it is merely concerned with maintaining its influence when it comes to the two-state compromise and peace-building narratives, all of which serve the EU’s political agenda.

Summarising the gist of the EU’s foreign policy when it comes to Palestine, Borrell tweeted: “The EU contributes almost one million € a day to attend the Palestinian Authority. We must continue to defend a peaceful coexistence and the two states solution.” A succinct description of what EU funding constitutes – providing the PA with the necessary backing to function without the existence of a Palestinian state.

For the EU, maintaining the two-state paradigm at the helm of policy works better than implementation, which is now inapplicable anyway. The pretence of state-building, which the PA forms part of, is also a veneer that shifts focus away from the EU’s lucrative trade deals with Israel. Borrell has already stated, unsurprisingly, that the EU’s trade agreements with Israel will not be broken. In 2017, Israel-EU trade amounted to €36.2 billion, which pales in comparison to EU assistance to the PA.

For Palestinians, therefore, the EU only finances hypotheses – in Borrell’s words, “the possibility of the creation of a Palestinian state that can coexist peacefully with an Israeli state.” The EU can claim to be the biggest donor to the Palestinians, yet it is financing its own agenda, rather than providing the means for Palestinians to demand their legitimate political rights.

The Oslo Accords, which allowed Israel to colonise additional Palestinian land, have not been repudiated by the EU. On the contrary, there has been no contestation of the framework on the grounds that it has stripped Palestinians of what remained of their land and freedom.

With the PA a willing accomplice, the EU has never been challenged by Palestinian political bureaucrats to uphold the rights of the Palestinian people. Conversely, the PA reaches out to the EU for assistance in maintaining the violations imposed by Israel and to which the international community turns a blind eye.

Europe is not helping Palestinians towards statehood – it is maintaining the illusion of statehood as an interim project, while Israel colonises what remains of Palestinian territory. The Oslo Accords are vague and so is EU policy towards Palestine. Instead of seeking clear parameters to decolonise Palestine, the EU is adopting the same ambiguities that have transformed Palestinians into a humanitarian project against their will.

The EU is merely financing its unwarranted justification of the two-state paradigm and forcing Palestinians into conditional financial aid. While nothing new is expected when it comes to the EU’s farcical peace and state-building for Palestinians, Borrell has indicated the EU’s agenda upfront – the financing of agendas and illusions to enable Israel’s ongoing colonial project.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

Israel has never had any intention of honouring either the 1947 Partition Plan or 1967 borders

When Ben-Gurion, Weizmann and others met in London in 1941 to discuss future plans, the cynical disconnect was chilling. Would “Arabs” have equal rights in the “Jewish state”? Of course, but only after there were none left

By Thomas Suárez 

Israeli occupation has been always claiming it is working hard to reach a solution for the conflict with the Palestinians based on the 1967 borders, but this is really a big lie.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised to annex parts of the occupied West Bank if re-elected in last month’s General Election, eliciting outrage from world leaders. However, that “promise” to usurp not just the West Bank, but all of Palestine, is century-old news, an ongoing promise being kept, and no international outrage has ever really mattered in any case.

A well-worn chapter of Israel’s creation myth explains its conquests thus: When in November 1947, the United Nations proposed partitioning Palestine into two states (General Assembly Resolution 181), Israel’s founders embraced the offer with gratitude, whereas the Palestinians scoffed at it and attacked the fledgling “Jewish state”.

The result of this alleged Palestinian intransigence? The “fundamental fact”, as the pro-Israel spin-doctors at CAMERA put it, is that had the Palestinians accepted partition, there would have been a Palestinian state since 1948, “and there would not have been a single Palestinian refugee”.

This is more than bizarre rationalisation for seven decades of imperialism and ethnic cleansing; it is historical invention. The Zionist movement never had any intention of honouring any agreement that “gave” it less than all of Palestine. Mainstream leaders like the “moderate” Chaim Weizmann and iconic David Ben-Gurion feigned acceptance of partition because it handed them a weapon powerful enough to defeat partition: statehood.

When Britain agreed to become Zionism’s benefactor, codified with the ambiguous 1917 Balfour Declaration, its negotiators knew full well that the Zionists planned to usurp and ethnically cleanse Palestine, and that the Declaration’s assurance to the contrary was a lie. As Lord Curzon complained, Zionism’s propagandists “sang a different tune in public” — a tune that the major media continue to hum today.

By 1919, activists like Weizmann were already exasperated at Britain’s failure to establish a Zionist state from the Mediterranean Sea to the River Jordan— as a start — and so pushed for “a comprehensive emigration scheme” of non-Jews to get the ethnic cleansing over and done with. The public lie remained safeguarded; British Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen assured Weizmann that the true plan is “still withheld from the general public”. Nor was the public informed when the USA’s King-Crane Commission went to the region that year and discovered for themselves that “the Zionists looked forward to a practically complete dispossession of the present non-Jewish inhabitants of Palestine.” The Commission Report was buried.

It was in 1937 that the turmoil caused by dispossession first led the British to propose partitioning the land. Ben-Gurion saw partition’s hidden potential: “In the wake of the establishment of the state,” he told the Zionist Executive, “we will abolish partition and expand to the whole of Palestine.” He made the same promise to his son Amos.

When Ben-Gurion, Weizmann and others met in London in 1941 to discuss future plans, the cynical disconnect was chilling. Would “Arabs” have equal rights in the “Jewish state”? Of course, but only after there were none left. Would partition be acceptable? Certainly, if the line were the River Jordan (meaning 100 per cent of Palestine for Israel), expandable into the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan itself. One attendee challenged the Zionists; the industrialist Robert Waley Cohen accused them of following Nazi ideology.

By 1944, the British knew that opposition to partition had “hardened throughout all shades of Jewish [Zionist] opinion,” and new resolutions among the settlers’ leaders placed “special emphasis on the rejection of partition.” But partition’s failure would become the Palestinians’ problem. The British would go home.

Ben-Gurion described statehood as a “tool”, not an “end”, a distinction “especially relevant to the question of boundaries,” which would instead be determined by “seizing control of the country by force of arms.” Scarcely any pretence was made outside the UN’s walls: Zionist Organisation of America President Abba Silver publicly condemned any mention of Partition and demanded an “aggressive and militant line of action” to take all of Palestine. The Jewish Agency’s militias were busy doing precisely that, frenetically establishing strongholds in areas that the UN was expected to allocate to the Palestinians.

“The peace of the world,” warned future Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin warned the UN in the summer of 1947 — after Zionist terrorism had already reached Europe and Britain — will be threatened if “the Hebrew [Biblical] homeland” is not given in full to the Zionists. “Whatever might be signed or pledged” at the United Nations, the Jewish Standard warned, would be annulled by the “power and passion opposed to Partition” of “uncompromising resolve.”

This mass fanaticism to “restore” an ancient kingdom and be its imagined population was the result of what might fairly be described as brainwashing. Already by 1943, US intelligence warned that Zionism was nurturing “a spirit closely akin to Nazism, [to] regiment the community [and] resort to force” to achieve its goals. Similar warnings of Zionism’s fascistic stranglehold over Jews came from individuals in the midst of it, among them J.S. Bentwich, Senior Inspector of Jewish Schools, and Hebrew University president Judah Magnes.

The day before Resolution 181 was passed, the CIA warned again that the Zionists will ignore partition and “wage a strong propaganda campaign in the US and in Europe” for more territory. Then as today, though, Americans were kept uninformed: “Americans,” noted US intelligence figure Kermit Roosevelt in 1948, do not realise “the extent to which partition was refused acceptance as a final settlement by the Zionists in Palestine.”

Ironically, it was because the UN never believed that the Zionists would honour partition’s borders that it “gave” them a disproportionately large land area, hoping this might delay their inevitable aggression. But barely was the ink dry when the mayor of Tel Aviv —the presumed capital of the new state — announced that his city “would never be the Jewish capital”. It would be Jerusalem, a direct breach of the UN Partition resolution, which had designated it as an international zone. The Jewish Agency also said that “a number of national institutions” would be in Jerusalem.

The duplicitous attitude toward their UN “victory” was barely veiled. Whether the “liberal” Haaretz or the Zionist newspaper Haboker, the message was indistinguishable: “The youth of the Yishuv must bury deep in their hearts the fact that the frontiers have not been fixed for all eternity,” as Haboker put it. However long it takes, the rest will be “returned to the fold”.

Israeli statehood assured, CIA warnings grew more ominous: Zionist operatives were now impersonating US military and American Airlines personnel. Former US Senator Guy Gillette was openly working for the terror gang Irgun and pushed for blanket recognition of Israeli sovereignty over any lands that its militias could conquer.

Jerusalem remained Israel’s most urgent concern. Whereas land under “Arab” rule could eventually be usurped, a Jerusalem administered by the UN might not. And so when UN Mediator Count Folke Bernadotte composed a new plan for peace in the autumn of 1948, the terror gang Lehi warned him against a “non-Jewish administration” there. However, Bernadotte kept Resolution 181’s international zone, and the next day Lehi, under future Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, assassinated him.

By the end of 1948 Israel had stolen more than half of the land it had “agreed” to leave for the Palestinians, and refused to budge. This was the origin of the misnomer “1967 borders”; in truth they are the ceasefire line. Partition was a charade, and Palestinian negotiators were right to dismiss it, but their honesty was, from the Machiavellian standpoint, a tactical blunder which the Zionists were counting on. In short, Israel has never had any intention of honouring either the 1947 Partition Plan or the 1967 borders. So-called Greater Israel across all of historic Palestine and beyond has always been Zionism’s objective.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

Extremist settlers burn olive trees in Jenin

JENIN, PALESTINOW.COM — Israeli settlers on Monday afternoon set fire to Palestinian olive trees in Silat ad-Dhahr village, south of Jenin City, and attacked Palestinian farmers.

Local sources told the Palestinian reporter that a group of Israeli settlers stormed Palestinian lands in Silat ad-Dhahr and burned olive fields to prevent Palestinian farmers from harvesting their crops.

This attack is not the first of its kind. Israeli settlers on a regular basis attack Palestinian farmers in the village and destroy their crops.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

IOF arrests security and five men in Al-Aqsa mosque

OCCUPIED AL-QUDS, PALESTINOW.COM — Israeli soldiers abducted, Monday, the head of the Palestinian Preventative Security, and five young men, in the courtyards of the al-Aqsa Mosque, in occupied East Jerusalem.

The WAFA Palestinian News Agency said the soldiers abducted the head of the Palestinian Preventative Security office in occupied Jerusalem, Sa’id Atari, and five other young men.

It added that the soldiers invaded the courtyards of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, before abducting the six Palestinians, and took them to an interrogation center in Jerusalem.

On Monday at dawn, the soldiers abducted Jerusalem Governor Adnan Gheith, and Fateh Secretary in the city, Shadi Mitwer, from their homes in Jerusalem.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

Tension At Aqsa Mosque Following Visit By Saudi Soccer Delegation

A state of high tension prevailed at the Aqsa Mosque in Occupied Jerusalem on Monday after a Saudi soccer delegation visited the holy site under security protection by Israeli and Palestinian Authority (PA) forces.

According to local media sources, Israeli police forces arrested many Palestinians, including three from the 1948 occupied lands, after they protested the Saudi sports delegation’s visit to the Aqsa Mosque and its normalization with the Israeli occupation.

Meanwhile, verbal altercations took place between Palestinian worshipers and PA security officers, who escorted the Saudi delegation during their tour of the Aqsa Mosque.

PA security officers used foul language to criticize protesting women at the Mosque, local sources said.

The delegation’s visit has been seen by many Palestinians and Arabs as breaching a decades-long Arab boycott of the Israeli occupation state and an act of normalization with it because the Saudis obtained Israeli permits to play a match in the occupied West Bank.

The Saudi team’s trip for Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier match marks a change in policy for the Gulf state, which has previously played against Palestine in third countries to avoid seeking Israeli travel permission.

(Source / 15.10.2019) 

Israeli Police Kidnap Two Palestinians In Jerusalem

The Israeli occupation police on Monday evening kidnaped two Palestinian young men from Issawiya district in east Jerusalem.

According to local sources, police forces stormed Issawiya and rounded up two young men identified as Nasrallah Mahmoud, 17, and Mohamed Dirbas, 23, during their presence near the Arba’ein Mosque.

The Israeli police in Jerusalem also banned seven Palestinians, including two women, from entering the Aqsa Mosque for many days.

Lawyer Khaled Zabarqa said the police arrested on Monday morning two women and five men when a Saudi soccer delegation visited the Aqsa Mosque, but later they released them after detaining them for some hours.

The detainees were also handed police orders preventing them from entering the Mosque for 15 days.

(Source / 15.10.2019)

Israeli Police Shut Down Roads In Jerusalem Neighborhood

Israeli forces shut down on Tuesday two roads in Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, south of Al-Aqsa Mosque, citing current Jewish holidays as a pretext, said local sources.

Israeli police sealed off Al-Magahriba Gate Road and the Gethsemane Road, which lead to Silwan and Wadi Hilweh respectively,  causing a traffic jam.

This came as 200 settlers barged their way to the mosque compound under police protection to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, which started on October 14 and ends on October 20.

The Islamic Waqf Department of Jerusalem confirmed that settlers were briefed about the planned construction of the third temple over what they call “Temple Mount”.

Road closures besides to other measures, taken under the guise of security, are intended to entrench Israel’s 51-year-old military occupation of the West Bank and its settler colonial project which it enforces with routine and frequently deadly violence against Palestinians.

Messianic Jewish settlers are hoping to establish an increased presence on the site of the Al-Aqsa mosque, among the most important Muslim shrines in the world and potent symbols of Palestinian nationalism, and calling for building a third temple on what they term the “Temple Mount”.

Their far-right beliefs were once considered a small fringe movement, but in recent years, they have found favor in the administration of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, receiving the endorsement of many lawmakers.

Settlers incursions into the mosque compound coupled with the takeover of church property in Jerusalem are perceived as part of the plan to transform a multi-religious and multi-cultural city into a “reunified” Jewish city under the exclusive control and sovereignty of Israel.

(Source / 15.10.2019)