Palestinian Fighters Exchange Fire With Soldiers Invading Jenin And Tulkarem

On Friday at dawn, Palestinian resistance fighters exchanged fire with Israeli soldiers invading Jenin and Tulkarem in the northern parts of the occupied West Bank. Undercover soldiers kidnapped a young man and shot one.

Media sources said several armored military vehicles invaded the town of Jaba’, south of Jenin, before the soldiers stormed and ransacked several homes.

They added that the soldiers also occupied the rooftops of several buildings to use them as monitoring towers and firing posts.

Undercover soldiers also infiltrated the town, kidnapped Ghazi Ghannam, and interrogated his family for several hours.

Ghazi is the brother of Fateh movement secretary in Jenin, Razi Ghannam; a day earlier, the soldiers abducted four of Ghazi’s brothers and released them after more than twelve hours of interrogation.

The soldiers also detained a young man, Mahmoud As’ad Fashafsha, and interrogated him before releasing him.

Palestinian fighters exchanged fire with the soldiers in several parts of the town; there have been no reports of injuries.

The soldiers also invaded Tulkarem city, especially the city center, leading to protests before the soldiers shot a young man with a live round.

Resistance fighters also exchanged fire with the soldiers in several parts of the city before the army withdrew from the area.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

WAFA: “Jerusalem Mufti Denounces Visit By Former US Vice President Pence To Ibrahimi Mosque”

JERUSALEM, Thursday, March 10, 2022 (WAFA) – The Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine, Sheikh Mohammad Hussein, today denounced the visit of former US Vice President Mike Pence to the Ibrahimi Mosque in the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron.

“The Ibrahimi Mosque is an Islamic Mosque and a worship place for Muslims alone,” the Mufti said in a statement. “What the US vice president did was a provocative act and extremely dangerous. The occupation authorities bear its consequences.”

The Mufti, who is the highest Muslim religious authority in Palestine, said Israel allowed Jews to pray at the Ibrahim mosque, also known as Cave of the Patriarchs, after dividing it between Muslims and Jews following the massacre in which a Jewish settler member of the terrorist Israeli Kach movement opened fire at Muslims performing the early morning prayer in the mosque on February 25, 1994, killing 29 people and injuring dozens of others.

The Israeli government, after the massacre, punished the Palestinian victims and rewarded the criminals when it divided the mosque and allowed Jews to pray at certain areas of it, occasionally restricting access of Muslims to it or banning the call for prayer from its minarets.

Sheikh Hussein called on the Arab and Islamic worlds, as well as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the Arab League, and UNESCO, which in July 2017 passed a resolution designating the Ibrahimi Mosque as a Palestinian world heritage site in danger, as well as international organizations to provide protection to the religious holy sites in occupied Palestine and prevent Israeli takeover of the Ibrahimi Mosque and changing its Islamic character.

Pence yesterday toured the Ibrahimi Mosque accompanied by far-right-wing and fascist Israeli member of parliament, Itamar Ben Gvir, who is currently leading a campaign to uproot several Palestinian families from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem and replace them with Jewish settlers, and Baruch Marzel, member of the Kach terror group who was banned from running for parliament elections due to his extreme right-wing and racist views against Palestinians and Arabs in general and incitement to violence.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

Soldiers Invade Homes Attack Many Palestinians In Hebron

On Friday morning, Israeli soldiers stormed and ransacked several homes in the Tiwani village in Masafer Yatta, south of Hebron, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank, attacked several Palestinians, and fired concussion grenades.

Fuad al-Amour, the coordinator of the Protection and Steadfastness Committee in Southern Hebron Hills, said the soldiers attacked homes after storming his home, in addition to invading and searching the home committee member, Suleiman al-Adra.

The soldiers also invaded and ransacked the home of a local nonviolent activist against the occupation and colonies, Mohammad al-Hreini.

During the invasions into the homes, the soldiers hurled concussion grenades at the families, causing anxiety attacks, especially among the children.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

Israeli Soldiers Shoot A Journalist In Hebron

On Friday, Israeli soldiers shot a Palestinian journalist with rubber-coated steel bullets and caused many Palestinians to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation in the center of Hebron city, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank.

Media sources said the soldiers invaded the Bab az-Zawiya area, leading to protests before firing many rubber-coated steel bullets, gas bombs, and concussion grenades.

They added that the soldiers shot a photojournalist, Ma’moun Wazwaz, with two rubber-coated steel bullets in the shoulder and the abdomen before the medics rushed him to a hospital in Hebron.

He was shot when the soldiers deliberately targeted journalists with rubber-coated steel bullets and gas bombs.

Many Palestinians suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation, in addition to cuts and bruises, and received the needed treatment.

In related news, the soldiers invaded Ni’lin town, west of the central West Bank city of Ramallah, before storming and ransacking the home of Walid Abu Srour, causing damage.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

WAFA: “Settlers Vandalize 15 Vehicles; Scrawl Hate Graffiti Near Nablus”

NABLUS, Friday, March 11, 2022 (WAFA) – Israeli settlers today vandalized 15 Palestinian vehicles and scrawled hate graffiti in Qaryut village, south of Nablus, according to a local activist.

Bashar Qaryuti, a local anti-settlement activist, said that a group of settlers sneaked their way into the southern and western parts of the northern West Bank village, where they punctured the tires of 15 vehicles and spray-painted hate anti-Palestinian graffiti on the external walls of nearby houses.

The vandals came from the nearby colonial settlements of Shilo and Elie.

Settler violence against Palestinians and their property is routine in the West Bank and is rarely prosecuted by Israeli authorities.

Settler violence includes property and mosque arsons, stone-throwing, uprooting of crops and olive trees, attacks on vulnerable homes, among others.

There are over 700,000 Israeli settlers living in colonial settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

Israeli Soldiers Injure Many Palestinians Near Nablus

Israeli soldiers injured many Palestinians during processions in Beita and Beit Dajan, south and east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus.

Ahmad Jibril, the head of the Emergency Department at the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) in Nablus, said the soldiers shot three Palestinians with rubber-coated steel bullets in Beita.

The soldiers also caused several others to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation in Sbeih Mountain in Beita.

He added that one of the wounded, a child, only twelve years of age, was shot with a rubber-coated steel bullet.

Jibril also said the soldiers caused at least five Palestinians to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation in Beit Dajan.

For about a year, the Palestinians have held weekly processions in Beita and Beit Dajan after illegal Israeli colonizers occupied Sbeih Mountain and installed an outpost on the privately-owned Palestinian lands.

The Israeli attacks against the protesters have led to hundreds of casualties, including several fatalities.

The Mountain, owned by the Palestinians, has significant strategic importance, especially since if the colonizers occupy it, the colony will lead to the annexation of 20 Dunams of Palestinian lands and would also lead to the isolation of a large area of Palestinian lands.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

Israeli Army Injures Many Palestinians In Kufur Qaddoum

On Friday, Israeli soldiers injured many Palestinians during the weekly procession in Kufur Qaddoum town, east of the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia.

Morad Eshteiwi, the spokesperson of the Popular Committee against the Annexation Wall and Colonies in Qalqilia, said the Palestinians marched from the center of the town while chanting against the ongoing illegal Israeli occupation, its colonies, and constant violations.

He added that this week’s procession also comes in solidarity with the Palestinian political prisoners facing constant assaults and dire living conditions in Israeli prisons.

The procession was also held to support the Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah, facing displacement and escalating violations in occupied Jerusalem.

The soldiers attacked the procession with many gas bombs, concussion grenades, and rubber-coated steel bullets, causing dozens to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation.

The Palestinians have been holding weekly processions for the last eighteen years, demanding the army to reopen the village’s main road the soldiers blockaded to allow easy access to the illegal colonizers, driving to and from Kedumim illegal colony, built on stolen Palestinian lands.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

Adalah: “Israel Reinstates Ban on Palestinian Family Unification”

The Legal Center For Arab Minority Rights In Israel (Adalah): 10/03/2022 – The new temporary order explicitly affirms that its purpose is to ensure a Jewish demographic majority. Adalah: “The Citizenship and Entry into Israel” Law is one of the most racist and discriminatory laws in the world and must immediately be repealed.”

After more than 200 hours of deliberations, the Israeli Knesset approved the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order), 2022by a 45-15 majority vote on 10 March 2021.

The Law bans the unification of Palestinian families, as it prohibits the Interior Minister from granting residency or citizenship status to Palestinians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip who are married to Palestinian citizens of Israel. It also bans unification between a citizen or resident of Israel with spouses from “enemy states”, including Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Iran.

In response, Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel issued the following statement:

“Israel’s Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law is one of the most racist and discriminatory laws in the world. No other state bans its citizens from exercising their basic right to family life, based solely on their national or ethnic identity.

For 18 years, the Knesset has repeatedly renewed the ban, and the state has defended the legality of the measure before the Israeli Supreme Court using unsubstantiated and baseless security arguments.

This facade has finally been removed, as the Law’s current initiators have not, even for a moment, hidden their goal, which is to maintain a Jewish majority.

The legislators based the legitimacy of their actions on the 2018 Jewish Nation-State Law, which constitutionally enshrines Jewish supremacy over Palestinians.

We will challenge this Law before the Israeli Supreme Court, and the justices will now have to decide whether, when faced with the Law’s explicit language, they will continue to allow this racist Law to be protected under the eternal pretext of temporality.”

The Law adopted today by the Israeli Knesset incorporates provisions from an earlier version of the temporary order initially enacted in 2003 for a period of one year.

The Knesset has extended the preceding law 21 times over the last 18 years.

However, on 6 July 2021, the law expired after the Knesset failed to achieve the majority required to extend it.

Notably, the failure to extend the preceding law was not due to a lack of political will but rather competing political factions failing to reach a compromise. Since its expiration, four different bills have been introduced in the Knesset, and they were later consolidated into the current Law.

Unlike the past law, the new law includes a section that explicitly states that its purpose is to ensure a Jewish demographic majority. The section provides:

“The purpose of this law is to establish restrictions on citizenship and residence in Israel by citizens or residents of hostile countries or from the region, alongside irregular arrangements for residence licenses or permits to stay in Israel—all while taking into consideration the fact that Israel is a Jewish and democratic state, and in a manner that will ensure the safeguarding of vital interests for the state’s national security.”

The co-sponsors of Law confirmed the demographic goal of the legislation, and that the Law is intended to fight what they coined as attempts to “gradually achieve the right of return” of Palestinians. Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked has also repeated this goal.

The new Law also introduces some other items, such as a formal requirement of the Interior Minister to establish a committee to examine applications for reasons of domestic violence, and a maximum annual quota of permits for humanitarian reasons, based on the number of applications approved in 2018.

In subsequent years, the Interior Minister will be able to determine a maximum annual quota of licenses or permits, with the approval of the Government and the Knesset. The legislation also requires the Minister to report on the number of permits issued, as well the number of rejections of requests filed to it.

More info and background:

Current status of family unification requests:

Despite the law’s expiration in July 2021, Israel has not changed its racist policy preventing Palestinian family reunification. Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked ordered the ministry’s Population and Immigration Authority, which reviews family reunification requests, to continue implementing the [expired] law. Following a recent petition filed by HaMoked and other Israeli human rights organizations, the Israeli Supreme Court held on 11 January 2022 that the Minister of Interior “must act solely according to the existing law, and may no longer follow the [expired] Law or the regulations issued pursuant to it…”. And thus it became urgen for the government to pass new legislation,

Adalah’s legal action against the Law throughout the years:

Since the Law has been first enacted, Adalah has petitioned twice (2003, 2007) against the ban on Palestinian family unification to the Israeli Supreme Court.

Adalah has also opposed all of the renewals of the temporary order since it was enacted and urged Knesset members to reject the extension of the temporary order, to refrain from any arrangement that would not lead to its complete repeal, and/or to refuse to vote in favor of a permanent law banning Palestinian family unification.

International criticism:

Numerous UN human rights treaty bodies have urged Israel to facilitate family unification of all citizens and permanent residents, most recently, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) in 2019; the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR) in 2019; the UN Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women in 2017; and to revoke the law, the UN Human Rights Committee, which monitors the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in 2014, finding that the law violates Israel’s obligations under the treaty.

(Source / 11.03.2022)

MADA : 562 Violations of Media Freedom in Palestine During 2021

Soldiers attack journalists (image by al-Anadolu)

Ramallah – March, 10th, 2022– The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedom “MADA” issued its annual report about the media freedom in West Bank (Including occupied Jerusalem) and Gaza Strip during 2021, which witnessed an increase compared to the previous year, especially the Israeli violations.

The year 2021 witnessed a total of 562 violations against media freedoms in Palestine, 368 of which were committed by the Israeli occupation, the most serious of these was the killing of journalist Youssef Abu Hussein, media graduates Abd al-Hamid al-Kolak and Muhammad Shaheen in Gaza Strip, meanwhile Palestinian sides committed 123 violations, while social media networks committed 69 violations, and other parties committed 2 violations. This increase in the number of violations constitute 137% of the violations compared to the previous year.

MADA said in its report, that this noticeable increase in the number of violations is due to two main factors, which are: a significant decrease in the precautionary measures accompanying the spread of the Corona virus in the Palestinian territories, which were made as part of efforts to combat the epidemic during the year 2020, and the increase in political activities and events Where the journalists who covered it were subjected to violations.

The attacks committed against journalists included a total of 356 journalists, including 281 male and 75 female journalists, and 32 media outlets employing dozens of male and female journalists, some journalists were subjected to more than one violation.

The increase in the number of documented violations is mainly due to the rise in the number of Israeli attacks, which is primarily responsible for the attacks that occurred in 66% of the total violations of the year, and was carried out through 14 types of violations, of which physical attacks occupied the largest number.

In general, this rise is mainly due to the attacks on journalists during their coverage of the activities in Jerusalem and other cities in West Bank in support of the people of Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood against the israeli attempts to evict them from their homes, in addition to the attacks and incursions into Al-Aqsa Mosque.

The Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip, which lasted for 11 days, had the greatest impact on the increase in the number of violations, as the army forces killed a journalist and media graduates, wounded at least 54 journalists, and destroyed at least 30 headquarters of local, Arab and international media outlets.

As in the past years, most of the Israeli attacks were the dangerous types on media freedoms and the lives of journalists, especially the physical attacks, which were 155 attacks, and constitute 42% of the total Israeli attacks, noting that 133 of them are injuries with live, rubber, metal bullets, and tear gas bombs.

Last year saw a significant increase in the number of Palestinian violations, which is (22%) of the violations in West Bank, this increase constitute 27 points over the number of Palestinian violations committed during the year of 2020, at a rate of (128%). This rise indicates the continuation of negative indicators regarding respect of media freedoms in West Bank and the Gaza Strip, the reasons for the rise, is the attacks against journalists who covered the rallies and demonstrations in protest of the murder of activist Nizar Banat by Palestinian security services, MADA documented a total of 69 violations against media freedoms in West Bank during June.

The report also revealed a decrease in the number of Palestinian violations committed by the security services in Gaza Strip during the year 2021 by about 80%, it decreased from 59 to 12 violations due to the lack of “sensitive” activities, and the smaller number of journalists and media outlets in Gaza Strip.

Despite the decrease in the number of violations committed by social media companies during the year 2021, this decrease is not due to a change in the policy of social networks, which continued to block Palestinian content through blocking or closing a lot of activists and citizens sites, but rather due to journalists and media outlets self-censorship. Violations of Facebook is the largest among the rest of the social media networks with a total of 41 violations, which constitute 59% of networks violations.

MADA Center demands respect of freedom of the press in the occupied Palestinian territories, as well as an end to all violations of press freedoms, an end to the immunity enjoyed by the aggressors and the punishment of those responsible, especially the murders of journalists.

It also calls on social media platforms, especially Meta, to stop their attempts to block Palestinian content, and to change their algorithms related to the Palestinian situation, which guarantees freedom of expression.

MADA Center demands respect for the freedom of media in the occupied Palestinian territories, as well as an end to all violations of media freedoms, an end to the immunity by the aggressors and the punishment of those responsible, especially the crimes of killing the journalists.

It also calls on social media platforms, especially Meta, to stop their attempts to block Palestinian content, and to change their algorithms related to the Palestinian situation, which guarantees freedom of expression.

Full report here.

(Source / 11.03.2022)