Today in Palestine! ~ Headlines ~

Land, property, resources theft and destruction/Ethnic cleansing/Settlers
Palestinians under U.S. pressure over settlement condemnation appeal
RAMALLAH, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is under the pressure of the United States to withdraw a Palestinian appeal to the UN Security Council calling for condemning the Israeli settlement in the occupied Palestinian territories, a senior official said on Monday.

IDF colleges in east Jerusalem? 'Dangerous move'
Defense Ministry plans to relocate army college complex from Glilot to area partly within boundaries of Arab neighborhood Wadi al-Joz. Rights group: This will aggravate already complicated situation in capital.,7340,L-4028664,00.html

Machsom Watch activist: Removing checkpoints doesn't remove the occupation
Susan Lourenco has volunteered for the Machsom Watch organization for seven years, so she is familiar with virtually every Israeli army checkpoint in the West Bank. She is extremely well-acquainted with the Hawara crossing near Nablus - one of the symbols of the occupation and its control over the Palestinian civilian population - having spent many long hours there together with other women active in the organization.

Israel closes northern West Bank road; deny report that checkpoints will be dismantled
Over the weekend, Israeli troops erected new earth mounds blocking the Nablus-Beit Iba road, a road which had been closed by Israeli authorities until international intervention by the Quartet for Mideast Peace, protests and lawsuits led to its opening in 2010. Also this weekend, Israeli military officials told the Tel Aviv-based news site Ynet that there were no plans to dismantle the West Bank's two largest internal checkpoints, Huwwara and Beit Furik.

Israel revokes more Jerusalem al-Quds IDs
Palestinians of East Jerusalem al-Quds are facing a daily struggle to hold on to their residency as according to the Jerusalem center, in 2010 alone, around 191 Palestinians were stripped of their Jerusalem/Al-Quds IDs by Israel.

Large Group of Armed Settlers Attempts to Enter Beit Ommar
Late Sunday night at around 10pm, on February 13, 2011, a large group of about 50 armed Israeli settlers attempted to enter the Palestinian village of Beit Ommar to harass residents. The settlers arrived in the area near the military tower at Beit Ommar’s entrance. Dozens of villagers, including activists with the Palestine Solidarity Project and the National Committee, also came to the area to defend their village. After a stand-off that lasted more than one hour, the Israeli Military ordered the settlers to leave the village. On January 28th, 2011, another group of settlers from Bat Ayn invaded the area shooting live ammunition. 17-year-old Yousef Ikhlyal was shot in the head while working on his family’s farmland. Yousef died of his wounds the following day in a Hebron hospital. His killers have still not been brought to justice.

Palestinian Quarry Ordered to Close Due to Settler Action
A Palestinian quarry in Beit Fajjar, south of Bethlehem, is to close due to "enforcement activities" by the Israeli authorities.

Settlers uproot olive tree saplings, IOF troops raid southern Gaza
Jewish settlers uprooted dozens of olive tree saplings in Beit Ummar village, north of Al-Khalil, on Monday, local sources reported.

'Defense Ministry keeping lawmakers in the dark about West Bank construction laws'
Refusal to answer lawmakers' queries violates the law, Knesset research center says.

Violence and Aggression
Worker Injured By Army Fire In Gaza
Palestinian medical sources reported Monday that a worker was mildly wounded by Israeli army fire near the northern border of the Gaza Strip.

Two 14-year-olds arrested in Bil'in
Feb 13, 2011-- On Saturday, Occupation forces arrested two young boys in Bil’in. Mohammed Faisel al Khatib and Amir ‘Aiysi Yasin, both 14 years old, were arrested by soldiers on the pretext that they were too close to the Apartheid Wall.

Border Police Officers arrest 11-yr-old boy
Inside the Military Repression of Nabi Saleh: Arrest of Children from Joseph Dana on Vimeo. This video was shot by a woman in the village of Nabi Saleh in the Occupied West Bank, where the military's targeting of children has become routine and a chief tactic of military repression. The video was originally shared by Joseph Dana on +972 blog; you can read Dana's story here..

Voices from the Occupation - East Jerusalem
On 12 January 2011, Luai (15), from Silwan, voluntarily attended an interview at Al Mascobiyya Interrogation Centre, and was detained.

Hamas: 7 supporters detained by PA
BEHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Hamas officials in the West Bank accused PA security forces of arresting seven party members for political reasons, the Islamist movement said in a statement Tuesday.  The arrests were carried out in the West Bank districts of Jenin, Nablus and Tubas, the statement said.

Health of two detainees worsen due to torture by PA interrogators
The health of detainee Samer Jaber, 30, has deteriorated badly as a result of his exposure to excruciating torture at the hands of interrogators from the PA intelligence apparatus.

Najah Univ. professor: Megiddo prisoners coerced into strip seaches
Mohammed Ali al-Saleebi, a professor of law at the Al-Najah University, marking his release from the Israeli Megiddo Prison told our correspondent the prison was rife with heated searches.

Mandela institution to file complaint against Israeli visit ban to prisoners
The Mandela institution has launched international contacts with the aim of establishing a legal committee that would file a complaint against Israel at international courts.

Siege/Humanitarian Issues
Gazans hope for free border
The fall of the regime in Egypt has raised hopes in the Gaza Strip, as Palestinians look for an easing of restrictions at the border. Before Egypt's mass demonstrations began, it would allow up to 500 Gazans a day to enter Egypt. But only patients, foreign passport holders and people who had special co-ordination with Egyptian intelligence. The Rafah crossing has been closed for the last few weeks and patients can not get out of Gaza for treatment. Al Jazeera's Nicole Johnston reports from Gaza.

Up to 150 Palestinians stranded in Egypt
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma'an) -- A Palestinian stranded in the Egyptian city of El-Arish said Monday that up to 150 Gaza residents were waiting for the Rafah crossing to open to return to the Gaza Strip.  Egyptian authorities closed the Rafah border crossing when mass anti-government protests erupted across Egypt in late January. The demonstrations led to the ouster of veteran strongman Hosni Mubarak on Friday. Mubarak handed power to the military, but the interim Egyptian government has yet to reopen the border terminal.

Footage: army wakes children to photograph them
Israeli TV aired rare footage, filmed by B’Tselem volunteers, of a new military method: soldiers enter homes in Nabi Saleh at night, waken minors over the age of 10, photograph them and leave.

Violations Bulletin - Issue 5 - January 2010
DCI-Palestine's monthly bulletin on child rights violations.

The WHO: Gaza drug shortage a threat to survival of hospitals
The World Health Organization said a shortage of medicines required in the Gaza Strip poses a threat to the survival of hospitals there.

Racism and Discrimination
Knesset passes Bishara bill: 'There's a limit to the madness'
Bill meant to deny pension payments from MK who fled Israel after being suspected of aiding Hezbollah passes final readings by 36-11 vote. MK Barakeh: Legislation fueled by 'dark urges of lowly politicians'.,7340,L-4028624,00.html

Activism/Solidarity/Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions
Release Ameer Makhoul and all Palestinian Political Prisoners Immediately!
Palestinian human rights defender Ameer Makhoul was sentenced to nine years in prison. This is a capricious sentence based on a plea bargain made after Ameer was abused.

Commemorate Land Day 2011 by Joining the Global BDS Day of Action 30 March
Feb 12, 2011-- The BDS National Committee (BNC) is calling on you to unite in your different capacities and struggles to join the Global BDS Day of Action on Land Day, 30 March 2011, in solidarity with the Palestinian people's right to self determination on their ancestral land.

Biweekly Repression Update
Feb 14, 2011-- This update contains exerts from testimony gathered by PCHR about the killing of Odai Qadous in Iraq Burin. Over this period, two youth were killed by settlers in Beit Ummar and Iraq Burin. Arrests in protesting villages continued to rise this week, with 9 arrested in Beit Ummar, 3 in al Nabi Saleh and 3 in Bil’in, as Occupation forces target village youth in an attempt to weaken the weekly protests.

Weekly Anti-Wall Protest Update - February 11
Feb 13, 2011-- Large demonstration in Ni’lin in solidarity with the Egyptian revolution. Bil’in remembers its martyrs, and al Nabi Saleh protests despite military orders. Popular committee in al Ma’sara calls for the activation of the popular resistance across the West Bank. Injuries from tear gas canisters reported in several villages. [MORE]

Solidarity visit to striking municipal employees in Jenin
Feb 15, 2011-- Stop the Wall organized a solidarity visit to municipal workers in the Jenin governorate who have been on strike for the past consecutive weeks, and on hunger strike for the past three days. Workers are demanding that the Ministry of Local Government, along with the head and the council of the Jenin Municipality commit an interpretation of the law governing local bodies that guarantees employees and workers stable employment and dignified living.

Beit Ommar Demonstrators Protest Settlers, Vow Solidarity With Egypt
On February 12, 2011, Beit Ommar villagers, supported by Israeli and international solidarity activists, surprised the Israeli military by demonstrating in a different area near the settlement of Karmei Tsur. The area chosen is closest to where Israeli settlers are building new houses on land that legally belongs to Beit Ommar farmers. This week Beit Ommar residents were joined by representatives from popular committees throughout the West Bank, including the villages of An-Nabi Saleh, Hebron, Susiya and Towana.

Solidarity with the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions in Bethlehem
Feb 15, 2011-- On Sunday, nearly one hundred Palestinians gathered Manger Square to stand in solidarity with Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions, and current movements in Yemen and Algeria. Participants carried Palestinian, Egyptian and Tunisian flags and shouted slogans for the victory of the two revolutions, haling the great accomplishments that have been achieved by both Egyptians and Tunisians.

Report from Sheikh Jarrah’s 65th weekly demo
It took the Planning Committee of the Jerusalem City Council less than fifteen minutes to approve plans for the next wave of evictions in Sheikh Jarrah. We knew it was coming. Six large Palestinian families—some fifty souls– are to be expelled from their homes, the houses will be demolished, and thirteen apartment units will then be built for Israeli settlers. We know the families, we know the neighborhood, and we know the meaning and intention of this move, a further step in the ethnic cleansing the government is intent on carrying through in Sheikh Jarrah. They probably feel that this moment, with all eyes focused on Egypt, is a good time to act. Some 90,000 housing units for Jews have been built in Jerusalem on private Palestinian land, taken over for this purpose. More are coming.

Interview with Omar Barghouti and Hind Awwad about the growing Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel.

#BDS: Largest Brazilian Trade Union backs Boycott!
"In an important gain for the global movement for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, Brazil’s largest Trade Union Confederation (CUT), voiced its support of the BDS call and called for the suspension of Israeli-Brazilian economic agreements and military ties on January 28.

#BDS: Cultural boycott of Israel taking hold in S Africa
"Despite complaints. 5fm which is run by the state broadcaster, the SABC decided to continue airing the advert, saying it was treating it as any other advertising. It would not however discuss details of the complaints it received or from whom exactly.

#BDS: EU-Israel Data-Sharing Plan Condemned
"The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) today condemned the decision of the European Commission which stated that “Israel provides an adequate level of protection of personal data”, thus giving the green light for “the transfer of personal data of EU citizens to Israel”.

#BDS: The Boycott VEOLIA Campaign
"The campaign against Veolia is intensifying. This follows the Russell Tribunal on Palestine findings that Veolia is liable for serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law.  There is an added urgency because Local Authorities in both South and North London are currently considering Veolia for major contracts.

#BDS: Resisting Pinkwashing: Queers Won’t Hide Israel’s Dirty Laundry
While emphasizing the thriving gay community in cities such as Tel Aviv in order to portray Israel as an oasis of gay freedom and democracy in the Middle East, Israel advocacy groups use colonialist language to suggest that Israel is surrounded by “backwards” homophobic, uncivilized Arabs, including Palestinians. Blaming “fundamentalist Islamic beliefs,” groups such as Stand With Us (SWU), a Right Wing Israeli advocacy organization highlights the violence that gay Palestinians face from their families and authorities in Palestine. Of course, they never mention the violence all Palestinians, whatever their sexual orientation, face from the Israeli government."

"On Saturday 12 February, boycott campaigners staged a Valentine’s Day picket outside Ahava. Shop staff quickly called the police and displayed a closed sign thus even further discouraging custom during the time we were there.  Many people were attracted to our brightly coloured broken heart-shaped signs that read “Ahava: Stop Breaking Palestinian Hearts”, “Settlements are Heartless”, “Apartheid is Heartless” and ”Occupation is Heartless”.

Israeli activists urge international artists to boycott Eilat music festival
Activists argue that if the festival takes place as planned, it will help Israel present an image of normalcy.

US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, "Obama Gives Israel Too Much Love in Valentine's Day Budget"
The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation today criticized the Obama Administration for giving Israel "too much love" in its FY2012 budget request to Congress. The budget request, delivered today to Capitol Hill, contains a record-breaking $3.075 billion in military aid to Israel. . . . The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation is organizing a multi-year campaign to end U.S. military aid to Israel. On its interactive web site,, users can view how much money their cities, counties, Congressional districts, and states provide in military aid to Israel, and determine how much health care, education, housing and jobs training this money could purchase instead.

Political Developments/News
US military chief reassures Israel after Egypt revolt
JERUSALEM (AFP) -- The top US military commander reassured Israeli leaders on Monday that military ties between the allies remain as strong as ever in the face of the changes sweeping the Middle East.

'Dysfunctional' Palestinian cabinet resigns
The Palestinian cabinet resigned yesterday, in an apparent attempt by President Mahmoud Abbas to demonstrate political reform after the uprising in Egypt. The shake-up could bolster Mr Abbas's standing among Palestinians, dissatisfied with a cabinet regarded as dysfunctional.

Analysis: PA cabinet changes show Abbas is freaking out
The PA president is worried that the tsunami that swept the Tunisian and Egyptian presidents from office could hit Ramallah.

Palestinians to wind up peace talks unit after leaks (AFP)
AFP - The Palestine Liberation Organisation has decided to wind up its Negotiations Support Unit after damaging leaks about the concessions it was prepared to make to Israel, an official told AFP on Monday.

Ashkenazi: Israel must be careful with its assessments of the Arab world
Speaking just after he stepped down as IDF chief, Ashkenazi says he is worried by the weakening status of moderate leaders in the region.

Establishing sovereign Palestinian state non-negotiable right: Jordan FM
AMMAN, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- Jordan on Monday stressed that the creation of an independent and sovereign Palestinian state is a non-negotiable right that will lead to attaining security in the region and the world.  Jordan's Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh stressed in a press conference with his Italian counterpart Franco Frattini Monday the importance of creating an independent Palestinian state at the borders of 1967 with east Jerusalem as its capital.

FM to Ashton: First solve Iran problem, then Palestinians 
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told visiting EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton on Tuesday that "the main problem at present, in the Middle East, in the world, is the problem of Iran."

Other News
Gaza’s Mubarak hospital to be renamed ‘Tahrir’
GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories — A major Gaza hospital named after Hosni Mubarak is to be rebaptised “Tahrir” after the Cairo square at the centre of the uprising which felled the Egyptian leader.  “The Mubarak hospital for children in Khan Yunis is to be renamed Tahrir hospital in honour of the Egyptian revolution in Tahrir Square,” Yussef al-Mudallah, director general of the Hamas-run health ministry, told AFP.  The hospital, one of the biggest in southern Gaza, was named after Mubarak in honour of the close ties between the Palestinian Authority and the Egyptian regime. The Egyptian president was driven out on Friday after 18 days of mass civilian protests, in a move welcomed by Gaza’s Hamas rulers and celebrated across the enclave. The epicentre of the protest movement was Cairo’s Tahrir — “Liberation” in English — Square.

In Gaza today a Governmental decision decrees the changing of the name of Mubarak Hospital in Khan Younis city to Tahrir "Liberation" Hospital.

PA agrees to pay compensation for death of Jewish settlers
The Palestinian Authority has agreed to compensate the families of two Jewish settlers killed in a resistance operation 15 years ago, Israeli Radio said Tuesday.

NGOs call for press freedom in Palestine
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- A group of 17 Palestinian non-profit and civil society groups announced the formation of a "coalition to defend freedom of expression" in Palestinian areas, a statement said Monday.  Press freedoms were at the "top of the agenda," and would be strengthened through a series of "initiatives to achieve its goals," according to the statement, which did not go into detail.

Israel increases activity on Blue Line, breaches Lebanese airspace: reports
BEIRUT: Israel ratcheted up its activities close to the Blue Line Monday, violating Lebanese airspace, according to reports from the south. Reports also suggested Israel was bolstering its border patrols in the region from which two of its soldiers were abducted by Hezbollah in 2006, sparking the devastating month-long war which followed.

West cannot be counted on for justice: Jumblatt
BEIRUT: Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt warned parties against relying on the international community to support justice and freedom as he hailed Egypt's popular uprising that led to the fall of President Hosni Mubarak's regime.
For further information contact Shadi Fadda

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