A man casts his vote during the Israeli general elections in Tel Aviv on 9 April 2019
The Israeli military will impose a total closure on the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip during Tuesday’s parliamentary election, Anadolu Agency reports.
“According to the security situation evaluation and directives of the political level, total closure will be imposed in the areas of the West Bank and the terminals of the Gaza Strip,” the army said in a statement.
The closure will be applied Monday midnight for 24 hours.
Israel’s parliamentary election is slated for Tuesday, five months after the last general election, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was unable to form a majority government.
In what many observers saw as a last-minute ploy for votes, last week Netanyahu pledged to annex the Jordan Valley and other settlements in the occupied West Bank if he wins next week’s election. His pledge sparked an international outcry.
Some 650,000 Israeli Jews currently live in more than 100 settlements built since 1967, when Israel occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The Palestinians see these territories, along with the Gaza Strip, as integral for the establishment of a future Palestinian state.
International law views both the West Bank and East Jerusalem as “occupied territories” and considers all Jewish settlement-building activity there illegal.
The Jerusalem District Electricity Company (JEDCO) has confirmed today that it has received its third warning from the Israeli Electric Corporation that it will begin cutting electricity to the Palestinian West Bank cities of Ramallah, Bethlehem and Jericho within the coming week.
The Chairman and CEO of the JEDCO, Hisham Al-Omari said that the Israeli electricity supplier will cut the supply to Ramallah on 22 September from 10am to midday. The power cut will affect the Palestinians living in numerous villages and towns around the main West Bank cities. On 23 September, Ramallah and Jericho and more surrounding areas will have their electricity cut between midday and 2pm.
Al-Omari apologised for the measures which are, he explained, beyond the control of his company. He pointed out that power cuts will have a serious effect on living conditions in the occupied West Bank, covering all aspects of life, including education, healthcare, telecommunications and business.
He urged international human rights organisations to intervene immediately to put pressure on Israel to cancel its proposed measures against the Palestinian territories. At the same time, he appealed to Palestinian customers to pay their bills on time and put to an end to the theft of electricity. Israel’s imposition of power cuts will be just one aspect of its overwhelming control of the Palestinian population.
Another major resource which has faced Israeli supply restrictions is fresh water. The Gaza Strip in particular has suffered from a shortage of clean water and is reliant on supplies coming from Israel. During the many bombardments that Israel has inflicted on Gaza, the enclave’s water system and pipe network has been damaged, and the Palestinians in the territory have been banned from importing the necessary materials to effect repairs, with disastrous results for healthcare provision, in particular.
Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Israeli right-winger Sheffi Paz documented herself, alongside others, attacking and vandalizing the European Union Embassy in the occupation state on Sunday.
The group spray-painted hateful English-language slogans in red paint accusing Europe of killing Jews, which read: “EU get out” and “German money kill Jews”.
Paz heads the “South Tel Aviv Liberation Front”, a group that fights for the total expulsion of asylum seekers from the occupation state and in particular from their neighborhood.
Candidate and Chairwoman of a riht-wing party, Ayelet Shaked, announced last week that she signed a deal with Paz, according to which she will only enter a government on the condition that tougher legislation be promoted against migrants. Shaked also stipulated her entry into a coalition on the establishment of special courts that would handle migration issues and which would not accept appeals.
Multiple European ambassadors condemned the incident. “That is deplorable indeed,” the Austrian ambassador to the occupation state, Martin Weiss, said, “In spite of all innovation, the pill against bigotry and stupidity hasn’t been invented yet.”
Bethlehem (QNN) – The Israeli occupation forces demolished a house and two agricultural houses in the village of al-Walaja, northwest of Bethlehem.
Clashes erupted between Palestinians and the Israeli forces when they broke into the area. Israeli soldiers fired rubber-coated metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs. No injuries were reported.
According to the Palestinian activist Ibrahim Awadallah, Israeli occupation forces, accompanied by bulldozers, raided the areas of “Ain Jweiza” and “Khalet al-Hoor”, and demolished a two-story house belonging to Mustafa Abed Rabbo, in addition to two agricultural chambers belonging to Halima Ismail al-Araj, under the pretext of building without a permit.
The Israeli bulldozers also destroyed a road leading to the neighbourhood of “Ain Jweiza.”
It’s worth noting that at least 180 Palestinian properties in the village of al-Walaja are warned to be destructed by the Israeli occupation authorities under the pretext of building without a permit.
Israeli forces demolished early today a house and two greenhouses and razed a road in the village of al-Walaja, northwest of the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem, said a local activist.
Ibrahim Awadallah, an activist in al-Walaja, told WAFA that Israeli forces escorted a bulldozer as they raided two areas in the village known as Ain Jawaizeh and Khalet al-Hoor and embarked on demolishing a two-story house that belonged to Mustafa Abed Rabbo and two greenhouses belonging to Halimeh Araj under the pretext they were built without permit.
He added that the bulldozer has also destroyed an access road to Ain Jawaizeh, whose land was confiscated by Israel for the construction of the separation barrier and Israeli settlements of Har Gilo and Gilo and made part of the Israeli municipal lines of West Jerusalem.
Awadallah said owners of 180 houses in Ain Jawaizeh have received demolition orders also under the pretext of unpermitted construction.
Clashes erupted between youth and Israeli forces following the latter’s incursion into the village. Soldiers fired teargas, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel rounds at the youths but without causing any bodily harm, said witnesses.
Israel does not allow Palestinian construction in most of al-Walaja, which is originally part of Beit Jala in the Bethlehem district, but particularly in Ain Jawaizeh area of the village, which it has annexed after the 1967 occupation of the West Bank.
Israeli soldiers injured, on Saturday evening, 46 Palestinians, including children, after the army invaded the al-‘Ezariyya town, east of occupied East Jerusalem, leading to protests, and fired many gas bombs at protesters and many surrounding homes and cars.
The Palestinian Reds Crescent Society (PRCS) said one child, was directly shot with a gas bomb to her head and was rushed to a medical center in Abu Dis nearby town, before she was moved to Hadassah Israeli medical center for further treatment.
The PRCS added that six members of the same family suffered the effects of teargas inhalation, while in their car, and received the needed treatment.
Local sources said the invasion and protests first started in al-Qanatra Bridge area, before spreading to the rest of the town, and that the soldiers also surrounded the area of al-Aziz Mosque, and fired a barrage of gas bombs and concussion grenades.
The PRCS said its medics provided treatment to at least 40 Palestinians, mostly due to the effects of teargas inhalation, and some who were physically attacked by the army, in addition to a few who fell while the soldiers were chasing them.
Beginning with invasive night raids multiple villages, and ending with 7 structures demolished, 4 families made homeless, 2 Palestinians arrested, 1 beaten and hospitalized, 1 car confiscated, and 1 major access road severely damaged, Israeli Occupation Forces continue their ongoing assault on local communities in Masafer Yatta.
Masafer Yatta is a collection of over 20 villages near Hebron, deep in the south of the West Bank. Most of the Palestinians who live here raise livestock for a living; some are Bedouins, who once traveled with their camels and flocks across the dry and rugged hills, before Israel invaded in 1967 and occupied the area.
Despite archeological excavations showing villages have been there since the early Roman and Byzantine era, the Israeli army declared the area a live firing zone in the 1970s and announced plans to demolish most of the villages. While Palestinians in Firing Zone 918 are forbidden from driving cars or possessing any kind of construction material, Israeli settlers in the settlements of Maon, Avigal, and Susya, illegal under international law, continue to build new houses and farms, and are free to travel in and out of the area.
On September 11th 2019, from 0:00 to 4:00 AM, Israeli soldiers raided multiple villages, breaking into homes, forcing sleeping children and parents outside of their houses and searching rooms, cupboards and fridges, as well as cars and wells, damaging villager’s belongings and terrorizing local residents. The soldiers refused to show residents a warrant or give a reason for the indiscriminate searches; residents say their villages are often used as a training ground for new recruits.
PHOTO [Israeli soldiers raided 8 villages from midnight to early morning, awaking residents and searching houses without giving a reason or warrant.]
At 9:00 AM, 4 bulldozers and excavators, from JCB, Hyundai, and Volvo, and a Scania loading truck, together with dozens of IDF soldiers, Border Police, and Civil Administration agents arrived in the village of Mufakara, a tiny hamlet of approximately 50 inhabitants from the Hamamda clan. 4 structures were demolished and 2 families displaced, including a widow, her 6 daughters and one son. Residents of Mufakara said it was the 5th demolition in their village alone this year; one family had their home, demolished 3 times in 9 months. Civil administration agents also cut and confiscated a water pipe bringing water from At-Tuwani to Mufakara. This is not the first time Israeli Civil Administration has deprived villagers in Mufakara of access to water, a basic human right; Israeli human rights group B’Tselem reports that after having running water for just 6 months, Israeli forces destroyed and confiscated 6 kilometers of piping in February this year. The IOF also confiscated a car owned by the Massafer Yatta Village Council.
PHOTO [Israeli soldiers at the scene of home demolitions in Mufakara]
The IOF also demolished the bathroom of a family living inside a cave passed down for generations.
PHOTO [Israeli forces demolish a family’s bathroom]
In the nearby village of Khallet Ad-Dabe’a, Israeli forces and Civil Administration demolished the houses of a family with 6 children and their uncle’s house. A relative of the family that lost their home was violently assaulted by Israeli soldiers after running past them towards the house, and was hospitalized with multiple injuries. Two Palestinians, head of the At-Tuwani Village Council, Mohammad Rib’ey, and Bakr Fadel Rib’ey, were assaulted, then arrested by the IOF. They were released without charge later in the day.
PHOTO [Relative of the family that lost their home, with his son, after being attacked by Israeli soldiers, was later hospitalized for multiple injuries.]
At the same time as the home demolitions, the Israeli army used excavators to dig holes and pile boulders and rubble onto a key road, cutting off 15 villages from the regional hub of Yatta. For some of these villages, alternative routes to Yatta will turn a 30 minutes trip into one that takes 4-5 hours, much of it through unpaved dirt roads.
Many of the houses demolished on Wednesday were, in fact, built with funding from the EU and international NGOs, as well as the road, which locals say was repaired with EU funding after it was previously damaged by Israeli forces. Regavim, an extremist far right settler group which lobbies for demolitions and against EU development projects in Palestine, is highly active in and around the illegal Israeli settlements in Masafer Yatta.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, humanitarian organizations currently providing assistance to communities in Masafer Yatta are impeded by demolition orders “against the items provided”, as well as confiscation of organizations’ vehicles and equipment, and restriction of access to the area.
The Israeli government defends such demolitions by arguing that the houses were built without the legally required permits. A quick look at the numbers, however, show the virtual impossibility of obtaining a housing permit under Israel’s apartheid system. In a 2014 report by the World Bank, only 1.6% of Palestinian housing permit applications were approved; Israeli Civil Administration confirms that from 2008 to 2016, 66 Palestinian applications for construction were approved, while 12,763 Israeli settlement construction applications were approved.
To put that into numbers, an Israeli settler is 193 times more likely to have his application approved than a Palestinian.
Wednesday’s demolitions marked the first demolitions in 1 month and 8 days. The fact that such an extensive round of demolitions occurred just 6 days before Israelis vote in legislative elections did not go unnoticed, as Netanyahu, facing corruption charges and failure to form a government, tries to secure the settler and pro-Occupation vote. With both major Israeli parties declaring their intention to continue illegal settlement growth, and demolition orders pending on 26 of the 28 villages and hamlets in Masafer Yatta, the Israeli apartheid and ethnic cleansing of Masafer Yatta looks set to continue.
Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Israeli occupation forces carried out raid and arrest campaign against native Palestinians throughout occupied West Bank and occupied Jerusalem, arresting four Palestinians and wounding several others.
In occupied West Bank, Israeli forces raided Tulkarem and arrested a Palestinian young man after breaking into his house. They also raided housed in occupied Hebron and dorms in Birzeit, where they confiscated posters and interrogated University students.
In occupied Jerusalem, at least 46 Palestinians were reportedly wounded during confrontations between locals and Israeli soldiers, who raided neighborhoods last night.
A 6-year-old little girls was injured by a tear gas grenade, which was directly fired at her head. Other locals, including a little girl with special needs, were suffocated by tear gas grenades, which was heavily fired at Palestinians’ houses.
Israeli forces also arrested three Palestinians, including Nabil Abu Hummus (12 years old), who was assaulted before being arrested while he was heading to a nearby grocery.