Settlers burn 50 olive trees west of Salfit

Al-Rowad for Press and Media – settlers burned, today, Wednesday, 50 olive trees in the Bab al-Marj area, east of Deir Ballut, west of the Salfit governorate.

Eyewitnesses said that the trees that were burned were mostly aged olive trees, and another group of forest trees and almonds were also burned.

Local sources stated that the area where the burning took place is near the settlement of Lishm.

In turn, the researcher in the affairs of Asitan d. Khaled Maali said that part of the area in which the fire took place had already been bulldozed by the occupation, and another part was notified to be confiscated, and that most of the buildings in it were notified to their owners to stop construction.

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Occupation arrests 7 Palestinians from the West Bank

Israeli forces arrested seven citizens, including a woman, early Wednesday, while a house of a popular front leader was raided.
According to local sources, the Israeli army arrested the young Kassam Anad al-Jajob from the town of Qasra, south of Nablus, and arrested Ibrahim al-Sheikh and Walid Salameh.

From the town of Qabatiya in Jenin, the prisoner was captured by the freed prisoner Momen Abu Maala.
From the town of Yatta, south of Hebron, hossam Tayseer Quarteri was arrested.

The occupation arrested ali Bahiej Bassa, from the Jerusalem town of Ezeriya, along with a woman from the al-Salam suburb of Anata in the east.

In the same vein, israeli forces stormed the home of Pflp leader Abdul Alim Dana near hebron university headquarters.

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Injuries during a settler attack on an olive harvesting activity in Huwara

A number of citizens were injured today, Wednesday, as a result of settlers’ assault on participants actively harvesting olives in the town of Huwara, south of Nablus.

Local sources reported that dozens of settlers, protected by the occupation forces, attacked the participants with a volunteer event within the “Olive Fear of 2020” campaign, which took place in the Lahef area, with the participation of a wide range of volunteers from national figures, village councils and popular resistance activists.

The sources added that settlers, under the protection of the army, attacked the participants with stones and set fire to agricultural lands, while the occupation soldiers fired bullets and tear gas canisters at the participants.

Three civilians were injured by bruises and fractures as a result of being hit by stones, and three others were wounded by metal bullets and tear gas.

The coordinator of the “Fazaa Zaitoun” campaign, Muhammad Al-Khatib, said that the campaign aims to help farmers harvest olives in the seam areas and lands threatened with confiscation, and to protect the Palestinian farmer from attacks by settlers and occupation soldiers.

He added that the campaign will continue until the end of the current season and will focus on the areas most vulnerable to settler attacks.

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Israeli army arrests Palestinian police in West Bank

Israeli security forces shot at Palestinian protesters in Nablus, West Bank on 25 September 2020. [Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency]
Israeli security forces shot at Palestinian protesters in Nablus, West Bank on 25 September 2020

Israeli forces arrested Palestinian police officers and confiscated their weapons in the occupied West Bank, Israel media reported on Wednesday, Anadolu reports.

According to the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation, the Israeli army was carrying out an operation in Area C in the city of Ramallah when they arrested the Palestinian officers.

It said any presence of armed persons is prohibited in Area C.

The Israeli army described the incident as “dangerous”.

The Palestinian Authority has yet to comment on the incident.

Roughly 650,000 Israeli Jews currently live on more than 100 settlements built since 1967, when Israel occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Under the 1995 Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, was divided into three portions — Area A, B and C.

Israel prevents Palestinians from conducting construction projects in parts of the West Bank designated as Area C under the agreement, which falls under administrative and security control of Israel.

Area C is currently home to 300,000 Palestinians, the vast majority of whom are Bedouins and herding communities who predominantly live in tents, caravans and caves.

READ: Israel’s treatment of Palestinian prisoners exposes its racist cruelty

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Senior Hamas delegation heads to Moscow

Senior leader of Hamas Mousa Abu Marzouk and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister and Presidential Special Envoy for the Middle East and Africa Mikhail Bogdanov [Shehab Agency]
Senior leader of Hamas Mousa Abu Marzouk and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister and Presidential Special Envoy for the Middle East and Africa Mikhail Bogdanov 

A senior Hamas delegation is heading to Moscow to discuss the latest updates in Palestinian and regional issues with officials from the Russian Foreign Ministry, Shehab news agency reported yesterday.

Headed by senior member of the Hamas Political Bureau, Musa Abu-Marzouq, the delegation includes Hussam Badran, chief of the movement’s external relations department.

Moscow has previously hosted dialogue among Palestinian factions aimed at reaching national reconciliation.

The head of Hamas’ Political Bureau Ismail Haniyeh visited Moscow in March and met with Deputy Foreign Minister and Presidential Envoy to the Middle East Mikhail Bogdanov, as well as Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

The top Hamas leader discussed Russia’s role in endorsing Palestinian rights as well as the threats of the US’ so-called ‘deal of the century’.

READ: Hamas, Fatah complete consultations on reconciliation 

(Source / 08.10.2020)

PA: ‘Every settler unit constitutes a plan to annex our land’

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in Ramallah, West Bank on 13 April 2020 [Palestinian Prime Ministry/Anadolu Agency]
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in Ramallah, West Bank on 13 April 2020

Palestinian Authority (PA) Prime Minister Mohamed Shtayyeh yesterday criticised the continuous Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank, Wafa news agency reported.

“Every settler unit constitutes a plan to annex our land,” he said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting in Ramallah.

His remarks came as he denounced Israel’s approval of the construction of 2,500 new settler units in the Jewish-only settlements across the occupied West Bank.

Meanwhile, Shtayyeh condemned the continuous “joint American-Israeli” pressure being put on Palestinians, stressing this aimed at helping Donald Trump get re-elected.

Shtayyeh said that he was confident that this pressure would “evaporate” and called on “some Arab brothers to learn from history”.

“We are still suffering harsh conditions due to the financial siege and pressures which is disrupting our work,” he said as he announced a 45 million shekel ($13.3 million) loan for Al-Quds Hospitals which had its funds cut by the Trump administration.

READ: Abbas is still lying to the Palestinians 

Referring to criticism against the Palestinian leadership from former Saudi Intelligence Chief Bandar Bin Sultan, Shtayyeh said: “There are false narratives being disseminated about the Palestinian cause.”

Hamas official Sami Abu-Zuhri said: “These narratives do not serve anyone except the Israeli occupation.”

Earlier this week, Bin Sultan called the PA’s condemnation of the UAE’s recent signing of a peace deal with Israel a “transgression” and a “reprehensible discourse”.

On 13 August, US President Donald Trump announced a peace deal between the UAE and Israel brokered by Washington.

Abu Dhabi said the deal was an effort to stave off Tel Aviv’s planned annexation of the occupied West Bank, however, opponents believe normalisation efforts have been in the offing for many years as Israeli officials have made official visits to the UAE and attended conferences in the country which had no diplomatic or other ties with the occupation state.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu denied the UAe’s claims, saying annexation is not off the table, but has simply been delayed.

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Israel blocks Palestinian access to farmland ahead of olive harvest

A Palestinian man picks olives during harvest season at a farm on 16 October 2017 [Atia Darwish/Apaimages]
A Palestinian man picks olives during harvest season at a farm on 16 October 2017

Israel has in recent days issued 63 military orders to close areas and land planted with Palestinian olive trees, covering an area of 3,000 dunams (3 square kilometres) across the occupied West Bank ahead of the olive harvest season.

The military orders bore the signature of the commander of the occupation army in the West Bank, were dated 17 September 2020, and entitled “Closing down an area – preventing entry and stay.”

The military orders were attached to maps and aerial photos showing the locations of the land being targeted by these orders. Most are planted with olive trees.

The terms of the military orders clarified that their entry into force will be from the date they are signed until the date the end of the year.

A research report prepared by the Geographic Information Systems Unit at the Land Research Centre said that the orders targeted lands planted with olive trees in Hebron, Bethlehem, Ramallah and Nablus.

According to the unit, the orders indicated that these lands were considered part of land belonging to illegal settlements by the occupation forces.

READ: Ramallah’s Farmers’ Market is taking a stand against annexation

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Palestinian prisoner’s wife joins hunger strike, as medics warn he’s at death’s door

A 49-year-old Palestinian prisoner and father of six children from Jenin, has been on hunger strike for 70 consecutive days

Palestinian prisoner Maher Al-Akhras, 8 October 2020

The wife of Palestinian prisoner and hunger striker Maher Al-Akhras announced yesterday that she will be joining her husband in his ongoing hunger strike, reported Wafa news agency.

According to the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS), Taghrid Al-Akhras hopes that by joining her husband’s hunger strike, she will be able to garner more attention to his case and his deteriorating health condition.

Al-Akhras, a 49-year-old father of six from Silat Ad-Daher town, south of Jenin, has been on hunger strike for 73 consecutive days.

He began his strike after he was arrested and placed into administrative detention in late July.

Taghrid spoke of the lack of real solidarity with her husband, saying that the occupation authorities aim to kill him. She said: “My husband’s health is constantly worsening and his spasms are now frequent and dangerous.”

READ: Israel’s treatment of Palestinian prisoners exposes its racist cruelty

He is currently in Kaplan Medical Centre, having been diagnosed with hypertension in 2018, and now suffering from significant weight loss.

On Tuesday, a number of activists and members of Knesset from the Joint List visited Al-Akhras at the hospital. However, upon their arrival, MKs Ofer CassifAhmad Tibi and Osama Saadi were detained for nearly 20 minutes at the hospital entrance.

“I visited Al-Akhras two weeks ago, but his condition has deteriorated since, he is suffering and being tormented,” Cassif told Local Call.

“If Israel lets him die, it will be the fault of the Israeli government,” added Cassif. He said he had demanded Defence Minister Benny Gantz to release Al-Akhras but was rejected by defence officials.

“Administrative detention is the ugliest of tools,” said Tibi at the entrance to the hospital. “There are no charges, only a secret case. He’s facing death, so we came here to demand his release.”

READ: Palestinian prisoner begins 36th year in Israeli jail 

The PPS affirmed that “freezing” Al-Akhras’ detention instead of cancelling it is an “act of deception and constituted an attempt to end his hunger strike without granting him his legitimate rights.”

“From his hospital bed, Al-Akhras voiced one message to his lawyer,” the PPS added, “Either freedom or martyrdom.”

He added: “Doctors say I might die at any moment.”

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Israeli Settlers Assault Palestinians, Burn 50 Olive Trees

Illegal Israeli settlers, Wednesday, attacked Palestinians who were harvesting olives in Hawara village, south of Nablus, injuring three, the Palestinian Information Center reported.

The settlers came from the illegal Israeli Yitzhar colony, established on Palestinian-owned lands near the village, in the northern occupied West Bank.

Palestinian official, Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors Israel’s settlement activity in the region, said that a number of Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian civilians who were harvesting olives south of Nablus, and assaulted them, resulting in three injuries among the Palestinian harvesters.

Daghlas added that this is the third settler attack on Palestinian citizens on their own lands during the past 24 hours in the Nablus governorate.

In related news, Israeli colonialist settlers, Wednesday, set fire to a Palestinian-owned olive grove, in Deir Ballut town, west of Salfit in the central West Bank, a municipal source reported.

Deir Ballut town mayor, Yahya Mustafa, told Palestinian WAFA News Agency that a group of Israeli settlers set fire to 50 olive trees, identifying the landlords as Yousef, Mustafa and Sbeih Abdul-Ilah.

(Source / 08.10.2020)

Rights Group Condemns EU Delegation’s Visit to Southern Israel

The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor sent a letter to EU diplomats and ambassadors in the Palestinian Territories to protest against EU diplomatic delegation’s visit to Israel’s southern region, which borders the besieged Gaza Strip while neglecting to visit Gaza itself. This visit, Euro-Med noted, may consequently confer legitimacy on Israel’s brutal practices against Gaza’s population.

In a press release on October 7, 2020, Euro-Med Monitor said it sent a letter to a group of consulates and diplomatic representations of the EU countries, headed by the Representative of the European Union in the Palestinian Territories, Sven Cohan von Burgsdorff, to protest against the recent EU diplomatic visit to the Southern region, on September 16, 2020.

During the visit, EU diplomats in Israel met with the Southern Command of the Israeli forces that is accused of committing acts that may mount to war crimes while overlooking the suffering of more than two million Palestinians on the other side of the border.

The letter added that EU diplomats met with the Southern Command of the Israeli Forces and reviewed the challenges faced by the Israeli residential areas near Gaza, and the movement on crossings in and out of the blockaded enclave.

“Since the situation between the Gaza Strip and southern Israel is closely connected, we strongly believe that EU diplomats and representatives in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (oPt) need to pay a similar visit to Gaza. This would help maintain the EU’s image of impartiality and reiterate its strong positions on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” said Euro-Med Monitor.

Euro-Med Monitor drew attention to the fact that reviewing the situation on the border from one side while neglecting the other allows Israel to control the narrative of the conflict. This could serve as a signal to Gaza’s two million beleaguered residents which the EU failed and that now accepts Gaza’s unliveable reality as an Israeli security need.

The letter stressed that as the residents of southern Israel have the right to live peacefully, more than two million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip should have the same right on the same footing.

The policy of collective punishment cannot in any way contribute to bringing peace and stability. The letter added that restrictions and siege can only bring about more frustration and violence.

Furthermore, Euro-Med Monitor invited EU officials to visit the Gaza Strip and to see the devastation and destruction the residents of Gaza continue to experience, indicating that this would reiterate EU’s support for the Palestinian people, break their increasing isolation, and give them some hope that they are not alone.

Background

Israel has been imposing a tight land, sea, and air blockade against the Gaza Strip for more than 14 years. This blockade caused the collapse of most vital sectors in the 365-square-kilo-meter-enclave, where more than two million Palestinians live.

The blockade has impoverished half of the population and left them without jobs, and restricted the movement of residents in and out the Strip except for emergencies and commercial traffic.

These measures resulted in paralyzing the commercial, industrial and health sectors, with the latter facing an estimated 52% deficit in medical supplies.

(Source / 08.10.2020)