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The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil,    but because of the people who don't do anything about it    
Life under occupation

Searching for the man in the rubble: the shocking photograph that led me to the West Bank Kate Adams - The Guardian "A shot of a Palestinian man standing in the ruins of his home affected a London GP so much that she went to the Jenin refugee camp to find him." ca20/1/2017
Gaza reels from electricity crisisIsra Saleh el-Namey - EI "A shortage of electricity is a chronic problem in the Gaza Strip. Electricity infrastructure was targeted and destroyed during multiple Israeli military offensives over the past 10 years and cannot be repaired due to Israeli restrictions on the import of materials and spare parts to Gaza. Further restrictions on the import of fuel combined with a lack of funds have conspired over several years to create an acute crisis...But while Qatari aid will mitigate the situation in the short term, a permanent solution seems a long way off.The Gaza Strip has been suffering severe electricity shortages since the Israeli blockade of Gaza started 10 years ago." ca 20/1/2017
New Video Raises Questions About Alleged Car-ramming Attack by Bedouin Almog Ben Zikri - Haaretz - A video released on Wednesday may shed new light on the events that ended in the death of an Israeli police officer and an Israeli Bedouin who police claim ran over the officer during clashes in the southern Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran.-rh19/1/2017
Israeli forces shoot, kill Palestinian teen during clashes in TuquMa`an - Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian teenager during clashes in the Bethlehem-area village of Tuqu in the southern occupied West Bank on Monday afternoon, the Palestinian Red Crescent (PRC) ambulance service said. A PRC spokesperson told Ma`an that 17-year-old Qusay Hassan al-Umour was shot with live ammunition in the chest at least three times, and that Israeli forces had detained him for an unspecified period of time before handing over his body to the health organization.-rh 19/1/2017
Israeli Forces Seize Agricultural Tractors in Jordan ValleyIMEMC News - More than two dozens of tractors were confiscated in different areas of the Jordan Valley, over recent months.It is noteworthy that dozens of citizens living in Khirbet Abziq, mostly refugees from the pre-1948 occupied territories, are being deprived of many basic essential services under Israeli policies. The tractors are used for agriculture and water transference.-rh 19/1/2017
Video: Israeli soldiers kill Palestinian at checkpointMaureen Clare Murphy - EI - Rights and Accountability - "The footage shows a man standing next to a concrete barrier, several feet away from any Israeli soldiers. The man stands in place for several seconds, and remains standing as a group of soldiers shout at him to stop and sit on the ground and a first shot is fired. He then walks towards the soldiers who are firing near his feet before he eventually collapses, apparently shot in the upper body, as he comes closer to the soldiers at a faster pace." - id 18/1/2017
Letter from Palestinian father seeking justice for slain sonSiam Nuwara - PNN - "Nadeem’s shooting was filmed on CCTV and international news outlets covering the clashes. The footage shows the face of the soldier who shot him, and other soldiers making fun of it....Nadeem’s father says he was pressured to sign a deal that would give the soldier 3 years instead of the true punishment of his crime." - id 18/1/2017
PCHR: Israeli Naval Forces continue to chase Palestinian fishermen in Gaza seaPNN - Palestine News Network - "On Monday morning, 16 January 2017, Israeli gunboats chased and opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats.  They then arrested 5 fishermen and confiscated two fishing boats in two separate incidents." - id 18/1/2017
Israeli authorities coerce Palestinian man to demolish own home in IssawiyaMa`an - Israeli authorities have ramped up demolition orders in East Jerusalem in the wake of a deadly truck-ramming attack earlier this month, a move which was denounced by Israeli NGO B’Tselem as constituting “collective punishment.” [bz]17/1/2017
Broken homesAl Jazeera--A record year of home demolitions in occupied East Jerusalem For decades, Israel has been accused of using home demolitions as a tool to control the Palestinian population in the occupied territories. Israel approves less than two percent of all requests for building permits submitted by Palestinians, and then razes the homes and shops that lack one. In recent months, Israel has also ramped up its policy of punitive demolitions - destroying the family homes of suspected Palestinian attackers - despite the practice being labelled a war crime.dn15/1/2017
PPS: “Israeli Soldiers Abduct 33 Palestinians In The West Bank”IMEMC News - "The Palestinian Prisoners society (PPS) has reported that Israeli soldiers abducted, overnight, at least thirty-three Palestinians, in different parts of the occupied West Bank, during massive invasions and violent searches of homes.The Bethlehem office of the PPS said the soldiers have abducted a former political prisoner, identified as Mohammad Hasan Rabay’a, 34, adding that the Palestinian was previously held by Israel for twelve consecutive years." ca 13/1/2017
B`Tselem-produced Documentary to premiere at the Berlin International Film FestivalB`Tselem - Press conference "The documentary follows 12-year-old Muhammad Burqan, who lives in Area H2 of Hebron, a section of the city under full Israeli control. Citing the security of some 800 settlers living in H2, Israel imposes severe restrictions on the movement – by pedestrians and by car – of some 43,000 Palestinians living there. Palestinian residents are also subjected to routine violence by Israeli security personnel and settlers, for which no one is held accountable. This state of affairs has led many of the area’s original residents to relocate, leaving behind mostly underprivileged families." ca13/1/2017
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warns Donald Trump not to move US Israel embassy to JerusalemBethan McKernan - Independent - Several senior Palestinian officials have said moving the embassy would hinder moves towards a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. One influential imam said it was as good as “a declaration of war.” On Tuesday, the long-serving PA President, Mahmoud Abbas, added his voice to the concerns in an official letter which aimed to dissaude Mr Trump from the idea, Palestinian news agency Wafa reported.-rh 12/1/2017
Moving the US embassy to Jerusalem would destroy Palestine’s hopes of justice Nur Arafeh - The Guardian - By moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, the Trump administration would not only be violating international law, it would also be denying the Palestinian right to self-determination and freedom. Since 1967, Israel has been transforming Jerusalem from a multi-religious and multicultural city into a “reunified” Jewish city under its exclusive control. It has accelerated Jerusalem’s “Judaisation” through policies that specifically aim to minimise the number of Palestinians. Such policies have included the revocation of the residency of Palestinian Jerusalemites under the pretext of “breach of allegiance”, restrictions on family unification, discriminatory urban and zoning policies, the construction of the wall that slices through Jerusalem and the West Bank, starting in 2002, and the closure of major Palestinian institutions in East Jerusalem.-rh12/1/2017
Israel`s collective punishment follows Jerusalem attackNigel Wilson - Aljazeera - Hours after the incident, Israeli security forces surrounded Jabal Mukaber, an East Jerusalem neighbourhood that had been home to the 28-year-old attacker, Fadi al-Qanbar. Police established a cordon around the community, including a concrete blockade at one of the main entrances and checkpoints at other entry and exit points. The restrictions remained in place on Tuesday morning. "They closed the street with cement blocks. There was an increase in the police presence - they stopped and searched vehicles and inspected identity cards," Atta, a local resident who did not provide his last name, told Al Jazeera."Many couldn`t reach work. I, for example, had to leave my car behind and walk on foot to the main road because of the cement blocks. You could feel the police were on high alert and that they were trying to punish us for what happened."-rh 12/1/2017
10 Palestinian homes demolished in Israeli city, prompting mayor to resignMa`an - Israeli authorities demolished 10 homes belonging to Palestinian citizens of Israel in the city of Qalansawe in central Israel on Tuesday morning, prompting a defeated mayor to resign after Israeli authorities refused for decades to approve the city’s master plan. Local sources told Ma’an the devastating demolition campaign sparked clashes between Israeli police and residents. Mayor Abd al-Basit Mansour visited the area along with members of the municipal council and announced he would resign from his post, as Israeli bulldozers razed the homes to ground. Mansour told reporters that, "We have been waiting for approval of a master plan for twenty years, but our request fell on deaf ears.”-rh12/1/2017
Israeli settlers attack Palestinian videographer of Hebron shooting in attempt to ‘silence documentation and resistance’ Sheren Khalel - Mondoweiss - Emad Abu Shamsiyah first started receiving death threats in March, after a video he filmed for Israeli rights group B’Tselem, which captured Israeli soldier Elor Azaria shooting dead Abed al-Fattah al-Sharif, 21, was released to the public. The video sparked a media frenzy surrounding the incident, and directly led to the initial indictment of Azaria. Shamsiyah has not had a good night’s rest since.-rh 12/1/2017
A Soldier, Not a “Child”Gershon Hacohen - The Begin Sadat Center for Strategic Studies - When we ask young men and women to give everything they have and more for the sake of their country and their people, we cannot at the same time see them as kids. This is by no means a denial that every soldier is in fact a son or daughter to their parents.-rh12/1/2017
January 7, 2017 Asael, Susya, Twaneh, Umm al-KhairDavid Shulman, Margaret Olin - Touching Photographs - Asael, possibly the ugliest of all the illegal outposts in the southern West Bank—and the competition is fierce—is rapidly expanding. Yellow bulldozers, parked at the perimeter fence of the settlement, have carved out a huge swathe of intermeshed, criss-crossing gashes in the hill and valley just below. This wide, deep wound in the soil has been sliced, needless to say, through privately owned Palestinian land. We know the families. We’ve plowed here, on the edge of the outpost. There have been many bad moments with the Asael settlers, the ones we can see this Shabbat morning walking their dogs over the hill or praying to their rapacious god or swinging their children on the swings in the painted park just under their pre-fab caravans.-rh11/1/2017
The truck attack that killed four Israeli soldiers in Jerusalem was not ‘terrorism’ Jonathan Ofir - Mondoweiss - In Netanyahu’s rendering, it is not even significant to mention that the four Israelis who died were soldiers (and not worth even mentioning that the attack also claimed a fifth life, that of the driver, but let’s not get over our heads here). He simply notes them as “four young Israelis”. This is a description that strips the context of its military aspect, and I think Netanyahu knows this very well, as I will elaborate later. By such rhetoric, Netanyahu blurs the distinction between military and civilian targets, a principle which is very important in the distinctions concerning terror.-rh11/1/2017
What do Israelis think about settlements? Turns out age matters.Oded Haklai - The Washington Post - The year 2017 will mark the 50th anniversary of the 1967 war in which Israel conquered the contested territories from Jordan. According to the findings in this research, those born before 1967 are more likely to remember Israel’s pre-1967 boundaries. They know that Israel has not formally declared its sovereignty on Judea and Samaria. They view settlements to be outside the State of Israel’s territory. This is especially true for those who were at least 10 years old in 1967. For that generation, the Green Line is tangible.-rh11/1/2017
Report: 7,000 Palestinians held in Israeli jailsYael Marom - +972 - Since the occupation began in 1967, Israel’s military legal system has jailed anywhere between half a million and 800,000 Palestinians, according to estimates. This is an almost inconceivable number. The saying goes that there are practically no Palestinian homes without someone in jail. The conviction rate of Palestinians who have been arrested and tried in this system stands at around 99 percent. This means that if you are a Palestinian who has been arrested, it is worthwhile agreeing to a plea bargain, because you have almost no chance of being found innocent.-rh11/1/2017
Army Abducts Father of Palestinian Killed In October 2015IMEMC - "The Israeli authorities kept his remains in a morgue for ten months, and only allowed a few members of his family to bury him on Tuesday at dawn, August 30, 2016." - id 11/1/2017
Israeli forces kill Palestinian man during predawn raid in al-FaraaMa`an - A Palestinian man was shot and killed by Israeli forces during an overnight raid in the al-Faraa refugee camp in the northern occupied West Bank district of Tubas on Tuesday, Israeli and Palestinian sources reported, although they widely diverged over the circumstances of the man’s death. ***See: and:,7340,L-4905365,00.html [bz]10/1/2017
Gaza residents face a cold winter with more than 12 hours of power cuts per dayMa`an - According to a statement released Saturday by Gaza’s electricity company, most districts of the small Palestinian territory will only receive power for three-hour intervals in between 12-hour power cuts, as one of the two generators of Gaza’s sole power plant stopped operating on Friday due to severe fuel shortages. [bz]10/1/2017
Israeli witness in Gaza: No water, no electricity and children dying unnecessarilyAyelett Shani - Haaretz - Salah Haj Yahya, 50, who lives in Taibeh, runs a mobile clinic on behalf of Physicians for Human Rights and leads medical teams going to Gaza: “Most people don’t have work. They roam the streets, looking for a way to make a living. Across the Gaza Strip there are many people simply selling coffee or tea in the street, preparing a pot at home and walking around with it. A cup of coffee costs half a shekel (13 cents). The main thing is to make some money. [bz]7/1/2017
IOF demolish 10 water wells near BethlehemPNN/Bethlehem - "Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) on Wednesday morning knocked down water wells in Teqou’ village east of Bethlehem.Mayor of the town, Tayseer Abu Mufreh, said Israeli occupation vehicles demolished ten water walls used by Palestinian farmers under the pretext of unlicensed construction." ca 6/1/2017
Activist who filmed Hebron shooting `fears for his life` after Israeli soldier convictedMa`an - Just one day after the killing and release of the video back in March, Israeli settlers gathered outside the home of Abu Shamsiyya to throw rocks and make death threats, and he has received countless hateful messages on Facebook since. The United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner last month condemned the “daily violations” of human rights and international law faced by activists and human rights defenders in the occupied Palestinian territory.-rh4/1/2017
Inexhaustible Memories of Palestine Barbara Nimri Aziz - Counterpunch - I myself had witnessed the gradual transformation of returned Palestinian leaders into a corrupt and impotent club of (mainly) men hanging out in Ramallah pretending to lead, but actually serving as front for independence, their putative authority extending no further than the boundary of this city of NGOs, foreign schools and upscale restaurants. I also witnessed diaspora Palestinians returning to Gaza City after 1993, investing in their forthcoming state, “a Mediterranean Hong Kong”, only to depart within a decade, embittered and often more deeply religious, returning to homes in Austin, Texas and Brooklyn, New York.-rh4/1/2017
Babies die as Israel blocks ambulances in HebronCharlotte Silver - EI - Rights and Accountability - "Twenty-two Palestinians were killed by the Israeli forces in the Old City or near the surrounding Israeli settlements between October 2015 and March 2016." - id Between November 2015 and May 2016, Israel closed off the Tel Rumeida area of Hebron and forced its residents to register with the army. Access was controlled by a military checkpoint and restricted to residents. 4/1/2017
2016 `deadliest year` for West Bank children in decadeZena Tahhan - Aljazeera - "Israeli forces killed 32 Palestinian children in West Bank and East Jerusalem in 2016, the highest number in 10 years." - id 4/1/2017
Israeli Soldiers Abduct Two Children Near Qalqilia IMEMC - "The soldiers abducted two children, identified as Ahmad Sa’id Salama, 13, and Samer Sa’id Radwan, 15, and took them to an unknown destination." - id 4/1/2017
The Inexhaustible Memories of PalestineBarbara Nimri Aziz - The Arab Daily News - "I had stood speechless at the misnomered separation wall, essentially a cement corral and a menacing blight on the landscape of the Holy Land. I had seen the oasis of Jericho become barely more than an imposing hotel where peace conferees and aid agents hide in style from the peace they are unarguably not advancing." - id  4/1/2017
End medical apartheid: Israel kills patient Abd al-Kareem after banning him to enter Erez for treatmentPress Releases - International Solidarity Movement - "It’s worth mentioning that the Israeli seige of the Gaza Strip that began in mid 2007 has serious repercussion on the Palestinian health sector, resulting in an aggravation of the humanitarian situation facing Gaza’s 2 million people." - id 4/1/2017
Demolitions (1) : Israeli soldiers destroy 11 homes at Khan al-Ahmar, 87 left homelessIMEMC - Adal Jahaleen, one of the Khan al-Ahmar, told the that the Israeli military arrived with several Caterpillar D9 armored bulldozers in the morning. They forced his family and others out of their homes and proceeded with the destruction of eleven dwellings, home to 87 people.[ak]3/1/2017
Demolitions (2) : Israeli soldiers destroy 15 homes and a school at Khirbet Tana Ma`an - Israeli military vehicles stormed Khirbet Tana and declared the area a closed military zone. Bulldozers then demolished 15 structures, including residences, barns, and the sole school of the village, which also serves other nearby communities. [ak]3/1/2017
Girl indicted for attempting to stab an Israeli IDF soldierOmri Efraim - Y-net - The military authorities submitted an indictment against a 17-year-old Palestinian girl for attempting to stab an IDF soldier. The attempted attack took place took place two weeks ago near the Israel Border Police base in Qalqilya. The girl, whose name was not published, told interrogators that the only thing she regretted was that she did not succeed to kill the soldier. At her own initiative she provided the military prosecution with drawings she had made before the act, depicting young Palestinians stabbing Israeli soldiers - though knowing that the drawings might be used as additional evidence in her military trial. [ak] 3/1/2017
Israeli forces detain 5 Palestinian employees of Hebron Rehabilitation CommitteeMa`an - HRC`s director, Imad Hamdan, said that such Israeli procedures “aim to obstruct the committee’s work in maintaining the cultural aspect of Hebron and protect it from the Israeli attempts to Judaize it.” [bz]3/1/2017
Israeli Minister’s Plan to Annex West Bank’s Settlements Palestine Chronicle--Bennett noted during an interview with the Israeli Hebrew Radio that he supports granting Palestinians in the West Bank “self- governance, and the Gaza Strip will serve as the future Palestinian state,” noting that he supports holding a referendum to decide on annexing Israeli settlements in the West Bank to Israel. dn1/1/2017
Is Gaza seaport construction on its way?Shlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor "The story being told in the Gaza Strip is that Israel and Turkey have secretly agreed to the construction of a seaport. Once it is built, small ships would be loaded with raw materials and goods at an anchoring station in the open sea, under international supervision. The ships would then sail from there to the new port in Khan Yunis." ca 30/12/2016
Israeli Army Invades Zawiya Village, Near SalfitIMEMC News - "The soldiers conducted excessively violent searches of the invaded homes, causing substantial property damage, and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards... The army also invaded and searched homes in the southern West Bank district of Hebron, and summoned several young men for interrogation." ca30/12/2016
Palestinian population will double by 2050Alternative Information Center (AIC) - "The U.N. Population Fund in the occupied Palestinian territories and the office of Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Ramallah released a report titled, “Palestine 2030 – Demographic change: opportunities for development.”...The growth will be concentrated in Gaza, which will increase from 1.85 million people in 2015 to 4.8 million people in 2050. Strained infrastructure and a lack of employment opportunities pose problems. " ca30/12/2016
Closure, isolation and suffering for a second weekAhmad Jaradat - AIC "More than fifty thousand Palestinians are suffering after Israeli occupation forces besieged multiple villages in Ramallah, West Bank." ca30/12/2016
Israeli doctors refusing to force feed Palestinian hunger strikersBettina Birmans - +972 "According to research by Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, hospital staffs across the country have stood up to the security establishment’s pressure to break the hunger strikes and punish the strikers. Since the law passed, there has been only one case in which the state has threatened to use the law." ca30/12/2016
Demolition Notices Served to 20 Palestinian-owned Facilities in YattaIMEMC News & Agencies - "Local activist Rateb Jabour affirmed, according to the PNN, that Israeli civil administration crews handed demolition notifications against 16 houses south of the town, in addition to a mosque and three solar units.The notified facilities were funded by international organizations." ca 29/12/2016
7-year-old Palestinian caught in IDF stakeoutB`Tselem - Video "Kafr Qadum, 23 December 2016, 12:30 PM, 7-year-old Muamen Shteiwi held by soldiers. Photo by B`Tselem volunteer Abdallah Kadumi. The footage was edited by B`Tselem." ca 29/12/2016
The long road to rebuilding GazaSanaa Kamal - Al-Jazeera - ""Reconstruction in Gaza has stumbled," acknowledged Adnan Abu Hasna, a spokesperson for the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). "Unfortunately, the countries who pledged billions to rebuilding the Gaza Strip have not made good on their promises."" - id 28/12/2016
19-year old Palestinian girl sentenced to 16 years in prison, $20,000 fineIMEMC - "During the incident in question, she was shot 4 times and severely wounded by the Israeli settler, who claimed that he was acting “in self defense”." - id 28/12/2016
Israeli officer threatens to kill Palestinian youth and his familyNora Barrows-Friedman - EI - On 18 December, Israeli forces raided the homes of Ahmad al-Seifi and Khalil al-Banna, two youths in Dheisheh refugee camp, near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, and detained them. According to a local source, al-Seifi and al-Banna are still in detention. The source, who is not being named for safety reasons, told The Electronic Intifada that al-Banna was shot in the knee and arrested earlier this year. Residents of Dheisheh say they continue to be targeted with raids and arrests by an Israeli army unit under the command of a notoriously aggressive officer with Israel’s domestic intelligence agency Shin Bet. The officer, who goes by the alias “Captain Nidal,” has previously threatened to make “all youth in the camp disabled.” [bz] 27/12/2016
Dozens of Palestinians injured on day of mourning in HebronAhmad Jaradat - AIC - Israeli forces shoot live fire, rubber bullets, and tear gas in Hebron as the district holds funerals for five martyrs killed months ago [ry]26/12/2016
Short-circuited lives: Why my family is facing eviction from our home in the Old City of Jerusalem Rafat Sub Laban - SALON - For my entire life, 27 years, I have lived with the threat that I will be permanently evicted from my home in the Old City of Jerusalem. It’s a beautiful location, just 200 yards from the Dome of the Rock and offering an absolutely stunning view of the Old City’s holy sites. We have paid our rent. We have been good tenants. We have tried all legal means, including a Dec. 3 protest march, to stay in our home. Yet our “goodness” matters not at all when anti-Palestinian discrimination is the law of the land. We fear the Israeli government will turn over our home permanently to Israeli settlers.-rh 22/12/2016
Israel`s Jordan Valley regulation `discriminatory`Nigel Wilson - Aljazeera - According to the legal rights group Adalah, more than 55,000 Palestinian workers will be affected by the new regulation, which obligates Israeli labour court judges to order non-Israeli residents, including Palestinians from the occupied West Bank and international migrant workers, to deposit a financial guarantee at the beginning of a lawsuit against an Israeli employer. The sum would cover the employer`s court costs. Israeli media labelled the regulation the "Jordan Valley regulation" because it was viewed by the press to be politically motivated to benefit settlers who operate businesses and employ non-Israeli workers in this part of the occupied West Bank.-rh 21/12/2016
IDF soldiers who killed unarmed Palestinian set for community serviceJohn Brown - +972 - "In January 2013, Israeli soldiers killed Palestinian teen Samir Awad in the West Bank village of Budrus, after shooting him eight times from behind. The shooters, A. and B. — a commander and a soldier — were indicted last January, three years after the killing, on charges of “recklessness and negligence.” The names of the accused are barred from publication." - id 21/12/2016
IDF opens investigation after Palestinian teen killed by flareHaggai Matar - +972 - Israel’s military prosecutor is investigating the killing of a Palestinian teenager in the Gaza Strip after IDF soldiers shot a flare at his face, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman recently announced. Footage of the incident, which occurred on September 9, shows that the 15-year-old was not posing a threat to the soldiers at the time he was killed.-rh21/12/2016
Israeli Authorities Deny Winter Clothing to Palestinian Detainees IMEMC - "...all the families of the Palestinian prisoners have bought winter clothes and other kits for their sons, and sent them to the prison. “However, the Israeli Prison Service had accepted the clothes and the other kits, but the prisoners said that they did not receive anything." - id 21/12/2016
Israel orders evacuation of 15 families in Jordan Valley for military exercisesMa`an - The unpredictability of the training drills leaves rural Palestinian communities in the Jordan Valley anxious about when they will be displaced, and whether the next time will be permanent. Israeli NGO Kerem Navot has found that 78 percent of the total area declared as closed military or firing zones in the West Bank were not actually being used for military trainings, leading rights groups to conclude the land has been confiscated for ulterior reasons, most likely Israeli settlement expansion throughout Area C. [bz]20/12/2016
Israeli Soldiers Kill A Palestinian Teen Near RamallahIMEMC News - "The Palestinian Health Ministry has reported that the slain teen has been identified as Ahmad Hazem Ata Rimawi, 19, from Beit Rima" [ry]19/12/2016
Living on borrowed time: Palestinian village fights for its existence Max Schindler--Threatened with their village’s destruction, Palestinians in Susiya live in a political and psychological limbo. While working, studying and trying to lead a normal life, the residents are also fighting to stop their home from disappearing. dn18/12/2016
Palestine: The End of the Bedouins?Giy Hircefeld--One way to tell the story of the Middle East as a whole is to describe the endemic struggle between peripatetic nomads and settled peasant farmers—a struggle attested already in ancient Mesopotamian documents. For centuries, all the political regimes of the region have tried, with varying success, to get the Bedouin to come to rest on the land. But in Israel and in the occupied territories we see, alongside this familiar policy, persistent attempts to uproot Bedouin populations who have already settled on the land, sometimes generations ago, and who usually have clear claims to ownership of these sites. dn18/12/2016
UN warns of increase in `arbitrary` detention of Palestinian activists by IsraelMa`an - The statement, which drew from the investigations of two UN “independent experts,” highlighted the cases of Issa Amro, founder of the Hebron-based group Youth Against Settlements, and Hebron-area lawyer Farid al-Atrash, who were both arrested for participating in a peaceful protest in February. [bz]17/12/2016
Video: Women issue list of Israeli violations in the Bedouin community of Umm Al-KheirHuman Rights, National News - PNN/Hebron "the Umm Al-Kheir community, has been demolished several times and is still subject to demolition at any moment now, for being located in Area C which fall under Israeli civil and military control." ca 16/12/2016
Video: Google exposes Israeli settlement expansionPNN/ Bethlehem/ "Some settlements added whole new neighborhoods that extended on additional stolen Palestinian land, and some have doubled in size. Others didn’t even exist during the last 10 years!" ca16/12/2016
Top Israeli Politician: ‘I Prefer If Arabs Did Not Show Up To Vote’Marcy Oster - Forward - David Bitan, of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party, on Saturday said during an event in the Jerusalem suburb of Mevasseret Zion: “Arabs flock to the polls? I’d prefer if they didn’t show up to vote at all.” Some 95 percent of Arab-Israelis vote for The Arab Joint List party, Bitan noted, adding that the party: “doesn’t represent Israeli-Arab interests – it represents Palestinian interests.”-rh 15/12/2016
`Apartheid Israel’ is not just a political slogan; it is a daily realityJihad Abu Raya - Middle East Monitor - Around 70 per cent of all towns within Israel — Palestinian land occupied since 1948 — are “for Jews only”; the state’s Arab citizens are banned from living therein. This has been the sustained policy since the establishment of the State of Israel on Palestinian land. The means and methods may have changed, but Israel’s goal has not; establishing “Arab-free” towns, which are solely for those who have Jewish ethnicity, is the official intention. This is no ordinary discrimination in favour of one group of citizens; this is Apartheid itself. Despite this obvious fact, it is an issue which the international community would rather not address and so Israel continues to get away with it.-rh15/12/2016
Palestine: The End of the Bedouins?David Shulman - The New York Review of Books - Today, most of the Jordan Valley, undoubtedly one of the most ravishing landscapes on the planet, is situated in what is known as Area C of occupied Palestinian territory. This means that, with the exception of the ancient city of Jericho and its surroundings (which are in Area A, under Palestinian rule), the valley is under direct and exclusive Israeli military, legal, and political control, and also that large parts of it are taken up by Israeli settlements or by lands that have been reserved for future Israeli settlement. It also means that a Palestinian population of some 15,000 Bedouins who are settled in the valley is tacitly targeted for expulsion.-rh 15/12/2016
Strangled Education: Reporting on higher education in Palestine and Israel David Lloyd - Mondoweiss - Literally, because the freedom of movement that Israeli and American scholars take for granted is arbitrarily denied to Palestinian academics and, increasingly, to their foreign colleagues. Figuratively, because what is so implicitly racist about the conversation is the assumption embedded in it: in the scale of things, Palestinian freedoms do not count as highly as Israeli ones. Their right to study, to teach and to attend conferences can be infringed with appalling regularity, as their campuses can be invaded and their persons subject to strip-search or detention, with a paradoxically routine unpredictability.-rh15/12/2016
Israel Blocks Gaza Women From Breast Cancer TreatmentSarah Algherbawi - Countercurrents - Human rights groups have long documented how Israel has, in effect, sought to blackmail Palestinians who are seriously ill. Patients have been told that they will only be allowed to travel for treatment if they become informers to the Shin Bet, Israel’s domestic intelligence agency. Dalia Abu Skhaila, a 34-year-old breast cancer patient from the southern Khan Younis area of Gaza, said that Israeli officers at Erez have tried to recruit her as an informer on a number of occasions. Because she has refused to accept that condition, she has been blocked from traveling.-rh 15/12/2016
Israel wants mosques to turn the volume way downWilliam Booth and Ruth Eglash - The Washington Post - When the call to prayer begins in the Palestinian neighborhoods here, the Muslim faithful hear a song beautiful and sublime. Hour by hour, five times a day, it is the soundtrack of their lives. And it stirs deep emotions. Across the walls, across the lines that separate Arabs from Jews, the Muslims’ call to prayer means something very different. The Jews hear noise, they say. And worse.-rh 14/12/2016
Bilal Kayed released after 15 years in Israeli jail : Bilal Kayed`s case caused outrage when he was placed under administrative detention by Israel on June 15.Zena Tahhan - Aljazeera - Palestinian prisoner Bilal Kayed has been released after spending 15 years in Israeli jails, his family has confirmed. His case caused outrage within the Palestinian community when he was placed under administrative detention on June 15 - the day he was due to be released after serving his full sentence.-rh 14/12/2016
Gaza Life in Photos, Strawberry harvest beginsMohammed Asad - The Arab Daily News - "Cultivated land area shrunk strawberries than 2,500 acres in 2007 to 600 acres only, for the time being, estimated production of about 1,500 tons." - id 14/12/2016
After a good day comes a bad dayal-Khalil team - International Solidarity Movement - "In a city where every Palestinian is at the pure mercy of the occupying forces, expecting even the tiniest bit of humanity to be extended to them – futile." - id 14/12/2016
Israeli forces shoot Palestinian activist with rubber-coated steel bullet for taking photosMa`an - Member of the local follow-up committee in al-Issawiya Muhammad Abu al-Hummus was documenting Israeli violations and provocations when an Israeli soldier threatened to shoot him in the head if he didn’t leave. Another soldier then shot a rubber-coated steel bullet at Abu al-Hummus from an approximate distance of 25 meters, hitting him in the leg. Israeli forces and police officers had stormed the town and deployed in its alleys in a provocative manner, started stopping drivers, and arbitrarily issued a number of locals traffic fines, according to the committee. [bz]13/12/2016
J-Street leaders visit SusyaJeremy Ben-Ami - J-Street blog - The first thing that struck me about the Palestinian village of Susya was how small it is. We - 15 J Street leaders, including a rabbi, chapter chairs and committed activists - saw a camp of a few tarp-covered, minimal structures surrounding a well with no connection to the electric grid or the water system living under imminent threat of demolition. The people who live there brought the place to life for us – children smiling and playing with us; tea offered with gracious hospitality. A family with so little going out of its way to make us feel at home. Their grace meant so much more after they told us their story – a seventy-year odyssey of uncertainty, occupation and displacement.[ak]13/12/2016
Israel to keep Palestinian clown in prison without trialNatasha Roth - +972 - Mohammed Abu Sakha, a circus performer, and Hasan Safadi, a prisoner rights advocate, have both had their administrative detention extended by six months, while being denied family visits. [bz]13/12/2016
Israeli forces seize medical caravan, demolish quarry in Hebron areaMa`an / Wafa - The medical clinic caravan was given to residents by the Italian Cooperation as part of a humanitarian assistance package to Palestinians living in difficult conditions in "Area C" -- the more than 60 percent of the occupied West Bank under full Israeli security and civilian control. [bz]13/12/2016
Army forcing Palestinian families from their homes — to train on their landKeren Manor / - +972 - Ninety-one Palestinians in the Jordan Valley were forced to leave their homes while the army trained near their homes. Military officials have previously admitted that ‘firing zones’ are being used to expel Palestinians from areas of the West Bank [ry]12/12/2016
Video: PA officers prevent Israeli military jeeps from entering JeninMa’an News Agency - "A video that went viral on Facebook purported to show Palestinian officers standing in front of Israeli military vehicles attempting to drive into Jenin. The footage also shows Palestinian officers shouting and cocking their guns, before Israeli soldiers eventually retreated" [ry]12/12/2016
Will Israeli soldier get away with videotaped killing of teen?Ali Abunimah - EI - "An Israeli soldier facing trial for the killing of an unarmed Palestinian teenager that was shown on TV screens around the world may now get away with a slap on the wrist" [ry]12/12/2016
Bethlehem Lights Christmas Tree With Message Of Peace And Justice (Video)Saed Bannoura - IMEMC "The Mayor of Bethlehem, Vera George Baboun, delivered this years’ Christmas message of peace and justice during the annual official Christmas tree lighting ceremony, held on December 4th, at the Manger Square in front of the Church of Nativity in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem.The ceremony was carried out with the participation of many officials, scout troops, religious and social figures and thousands of locals." 9/12/2016
Bethlehem Lights Christmas Tree With Message Of Peace And Justice (Video)Saed Bannoura - IMEMC "The Mayor of Bethlehem, Vera George Baboun, delivered this years’ Christmas message of peace and justice during the annual official Christmas tree lighting ceremony, held on December 4th, at the Manger Square in front of the Church of Nativity in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem." ca 9/12/2016
Despite Hundreds of Complaints of Shin Bet Torture, Israel Yet to Launch Single Criminal Investigation Yotam Berger - Mivtan, it turns out, has never launched a single criminal investigation against a Shin Bet agent, even though it has examined many hundreds of complaints. Haaretz has learned that the department employs only one investigator, meaning it’s unlikely that complaints can be thoroughly examined. In practice, then, the unit does not interfere with the Shin Bet’s work, even though complainants have reported harsh and prohibited forms of torture – including severe beatings and extensive sleep deprivation.-rh8/12/2016
How Many Israelis Does It Take to Arrest One Palestinian? Amira Hass - Haaretz - So how many is that so far? At least 65 people. It’s clear that every soldier/policeman gets to arrest a few Palestinians every month with the same force often arresting a few all at once, which is much preferred. The same applies to the Nahshon teams and the Shin Bet coordinators, the prison guards, the detectives and the judges. Efficient and resourceful, they pass the detainee from hand to hand in assembly-line fashion.-rh8/12/2016
One week later: Where is the evidence of an `arson intifada?`Haggai Matar - +972 - But what do we actually know about this wave of wildfires? We know that there were 1773 different fires according to the Israel Fire and Rescue Services. The police were called to 90 of these “events,” 40 of which were investigated for a number of crimes (including negligence, as well as arson and attempted arson). The Israel Tax Authority announced that nine of the fires will be counted as nationalistically-motived arsons, yet the police and the Fire and Rescue Services were quick to respond that Authority’s list was not based on facts, and that there is no way to prove that any of those nine fires were the result of arson.-rh 8/12/2016
Israel`s Lehava stirs `anarchy` in Jerusalem : The far-right group stokes hatred and incites followers to violence against Palestinians, say analystsJonathan Cook - Aljazeera - The attacks were carried out by a far-right group called Lehava, or Flame in Hebrew, an acronym for the Organisation for the Prevention of Miscegenation in the Holy Land. Run by a far-right rabbi, Ben-Zion Gopstein, Lehava rejects any interaction between Jews and Palestinians.Run by a far-right rabbi, Ben-Zion Gopstein, Lehava rejects any interaction between Jews and Palestinians. Founded in 2009, Lehava is distinguished from other far-right groups by its official focus on stopping miscegenation and intermarriage between Jews and Palestinians. In addition to the 300,000 Palestinians in Jerusalem, some 1.7 million of Israel`s citizens are Palestinian by origin, making them nearly a fifth of the population.-rh 8/12/2016
Palestinians in Israel decry removal of Arabic on buses : Israeli buses remove Arabic-language announcements in southern city of Beersheba after pressure from Jewish residentsPatrick Strickland - Aljazeera - Israel`s Ministry of Transportation instructed the Dan Bus Company to remove Arabic announcements after several local Jewish-Israeli residents lodged complaints to the company and the Beersheba`s city hall.-rh8/12/2016
West Bank village turned into a `prison` in the wake of arson accusationsMa`an - Dozens of Palestinians have been detained -- including a number of children -- and clashes have erupted daily in the occupied West Bank village of Deir Nidham since it was blockaded by the Israeli army three weeks ago, “turning the lives of 1,600 into a prison,” locals told Ma’an on Wednesday. Deir Nidham, northwest of Ramallah city, was placed under a military closure after a fire erupted just a few kilometers away in the illegal Israeli settlement of Halamish, which is built on the lands of the village and on the lands of neighboring Nabi Saleh.-rh 8/12/2016
Israel refuses visa to theologian over boycott and divestment activismPeter Beaumont - The Guardian - Israel has denied entry to a prominent theologian and academic for her alleged activism in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement – the first time officials say a foreign national has been refused entry for that reason.Isabel Phiri, who is an assistant general secretary with the World Council of Churches in Geneva, was refused a visa at Israel’s Ben Gurion airport on Monday afternoon.-rh 8/12/2016
Palestinian circus trainer marks year in Israeli jail without chargeCharlotte Silver - EI - "Abu Sakha is the 25-year-old Palestinian circus trainer and performer who specializes in working with children with severe disabilities." - id 7/12/2016
Israeli Navy Abducts Four Fishermen In Northern Gaza IMEMC - "The Israeli navy boats fired many live rounds at the fishing boats, close to the shore in northern Gaza, and abducted the four fishermen." - id 7/12/2016
Palestinian village of Susya tests citizen powerRabbi Arik Ascherman - Mercury News/Action Network - Nasser Nawajeh, spokesperson for the threatened village of Susya, once told me that when they were expelled in 1986 they were powerless because they were alone. He said, “We are again in great danger, but with one big difference. We are no longer alone.” Susya probably would not be standing today were it not for international concern, especially expressed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Nobody knows what will be the policy of the next administration regarding Human Rights in the Occupied Territories. This is where average citizens come in. Our best hope to have Susya residents able to remain in their homes on the land they own is through American constituents pressing their representatives to express concern on their behalf. [ak]6/12/2016
‘We Are Orphans Here’ - Life and death in East Jerusalem’s Palestinian refugee campRACHEL KUSHNER - NYT - The camp is, according to Israeli law, inside Israel, and the people who live there are Jerusalem residents, but they are refugees in their own city. Residents pay taxes to Israel, but the camp is barely serviced. There is very little legally supplied water, a scarcely functioning sewage system, essentially no garbage pickup, no road building, no mail service (the streets don’t even have names, much less addresses), virtually no infrastructure of any kind. There is no adequate school system. Israeli emergency fire and medical services do not enter the camp. The Israeli police enter only to make arrests. [bz]6/12/2016
Aid Watch Palestine raises awareness of failed reconstruction efforts in GazaLouisa Emslie - AIC - Aid Watch Palestine holds parallel exhibitions in the West Bank and Gaza to advocate for a just reconstruction process in the besieged coastal enclave and assert Palestinian unity [ry] 5/12/2016
Quarrying leaves West Bank villagers on shaky ground Ahmad Melhem - Al-Monitor "The historic village of Kur, southeast of the city of Tulkarm, is known for its architectural heritage, including its domed buildings and castles, the oldest of which dates to the Mamluk era (1260- 1516), while others were built by the Ottomans (1516-1916). According to residents, Kur`s cultural landmarks suffer from general neglect, but what really concerns them is the threat to the buildings, and to their sanity, caused by a nearby stone-crushing operation." ca 2/12/2016
Chilean Court Charges Israeli Officials with War CrimesCeline Hagbard - IMEMC "A lawsuit filed in a federal court in Chile this week charges three Israeli High Court Justices with war crimes for their decision last year to split an ancient monastery in the Bethlehem District from its community by running the Annexation Wall through it." ca2/12/2016
WHO: Latest Health Access Report for the Occupied Palestinian TerritoryIMEMC News & Agencies - "On the occasion of International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, marked by the UN since 1977[1], WHO launched a 2-year report on health access at an event in Gaza, to highlight how the Israeli permit system and physical barriers obstruct health access for Palestinian patients, ambulances and health workers." ca2/12/2016
Now is the moment for us Palestinians to renew our national movementSalem Barahmeh - The Guardian - Fatah has long been the backbone of the Palestinian national movement. Today it is plagued by infighting between its various camps, often headlined by the feud between President Mahmoud Abbas and the former leader Mohammad Dahlan. This infighting is crippling Palestinian politics and society. It is incumbent on Fatah to hold itself to a higher standard and live up to its responsibility as the leader of the national movement. It must take this as a serious opportunity to elect fresh young faces and address its issues – not as an opportunity to further polarise the party and consolidate power. The final opportunity is the rumoured Palestine National Council meeting, which could be held before the year’s end.-rh 1/12/2016
How Israel is bypassing the PAAdnan Abu Amer - Al Monitor - Israel communicates with the Palestinians at the checkpoints and online. Examples of the latter are the Facebook page of Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), his Twitter account and his official website, which are visited by thousands of Palestinians daily. On Nov. 11, the COGAT Facebook page posted about 10,000 job opportunities in Israel for Palestinian workers and listed the conditions required; it seems that this page has turned into an official Israeli platform to directly address the Palestinians.-rh 1/12/2016
In Jerusalem, insurance becomes extortionJoharah Baker - The Electronic Intifada - Earlier this year, new regulations made it mandatory for all residents in Jerusalem with temporary family unification permits to obtain Israeli medical insurance. The law, which came into effect on 1 August, will cost those affected a monthly fee in addition to a large backdated one-time charge. It has caused an angry uproar among Jerusalem’s Palestinians, who see it as yet another attempt by Israeli authorities to target their community and make their precarious existence in the city even more challenging.-rh 1/12/2016
The Real Link Between Israel’s Forest Fires And Muezzin BillJonathan Cook - Counter Currents - Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared his support this month for the so-called “muezzin bill”, claiming it was urgently needed to stop the dawn call to prayer from mosques ruining the Israeli public’s sleep. A vote in the parliament is due this week. The use of loudspeakers by muezzins was unnecessarily disruptive, Mr Netanyahu argued, in an age of alarm clocks and phone apps. But the one in five of Israel’s population who are Palestinian, most of them Muslim, and a further 300,000 living under occupation in East Jerusalem, say the legislation is grossly discriminatory. The bill’s environmental rationale is bogus, they note. Moti Yogev, a settler leader who drafted the bill, originally wanted the loudspeaker ban to curb the broadcasting of sermons supposedly full of “incitement” against Israel.-rh 1/12/2016
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