||Today in Palestine! ~ Headlines ~
Land, property theft and destruction / Ethnic cleansing / Apartheid / Restriction of movement|
Likud mulls 'AG bypass' on West Bank outposts
Ynet 31 Oct -- Ministers support PM Netanyahu's proposal to form review
panel to retroactively sanction illegal outposts; suggest government
retains independent counsel to go head to head with Attorney General's
Office on the matter
Cabinet advances plans to build new Negev towns
JPost 31 Oct -- To the dismay of green groups, the government decided to move forward with an
initiative to construct 10 new northern Negev communities in its weekly cabinet
meeting on Sunday ... The Settlements Division of the World Zionist
Organization, which said it will be responsible for planning 10 new northern
Negev communities as a result of the cabinet decision, argued that the
development will "give life" to the region
Khan al-Ahmar homes demolished
ICAHD 31 Oct -- Five family homes were demolished this morning ... in
the Jerusalem periphery Palestinian-Bedouin community of Khan al-Ahmar.
15 army jeeps and a bulldozer showed up at the rural community, in the
hills east of Jerusalem this morning, and demolished five family homes,
displacing 71 people, including some 60 children. ICAHD staff arrived at
the community a few short hours after the
demolition to find family members mourning the loss of their homes and
property. Abu Khamis, a Khan al-Ahmar community activist told ICAHD
staff: 'We will not be forced off our land, if Israel demolishes, we
Israel: Charging house demolition victims to pay costs of demolition equipment / Samir
ISM 31 Oct -- ... The families received the first demolition order 10
days ago and were
then told to demolish their own houses. When this did not happened a
final demolition order was sent three days ago. Around 10 AM today 15
military vehicles arrived and the army demolished the three houses ...
Not only did they lose their homes, but they will also be held
responsible to pay for the rent of the bulldozer that demolished the
houses. Only one woman and one child were present when the demolition
happened. All the men stayed away from the location in order not to be
held financially responsible.
New report says Israeli home demolitions in East Jerusalem violate international law, may constitute a war crime / Zack Resnick
Mondo 31 Oct -- Earlier today The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions gave
a press conference releasing its new report
on Israeli housing demolition policy in East Jerusalem, and
announcing that it will submit complaints to the U.N. A press release
accompanying the report reads in part:
Jordanian farmers to sue Israeli premier for property damage
AMMAN (PIC) 31 Oct -- Dean of Jordan Valley farmers Adnan Al-Khaddam
said he intends to file a lawsuit against the Israeli premier with
international courts and another one locally against his ambassador in
Amman because of the fire damage that happened to their agricultural
lands in border areas. The Jordanian newspaper Assabil quoted Khaddam as
saying that deliberate fires caused by Israeli occupation forces on the
Israeli occupied side of Jordan Valley region extended to their side
damaging their property, and vast tracts of crops and trees.
Link to Palestinian Information Center
PA: Israel bans 19 people from undertaking Hajj
(Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- Israeli authorities on Sunday banned 29 West Bank
Palestinians from traveling to Saudi Arabia to perform the Hajj
pilgrimage, a PA official said. Issa Qaraqe, minister of prisoner
affairs in Ramallah, said that all of the pilgrims banned from
traveling were relatives of prisoners in Israeli jails ... The minister
slammed the policy, labeling it "aggressive behavior which violates the
right to practice religious rites."
Authorities block Silwanic photographer from Al-Aqsa
Jerusalem (SILWANIC) -- Silwanic photographer Ahmad Siyam was
prevented by Israeli forces from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound
yesterday, Thursday 27 October. Officers cited security reasons for the
ban. Siyam was on an assignment documenting the delegation of released
prisoners visiting the tomb of Faisal al-Husaini.
Journalists syndicate condemns withdrawal of reporter's permit to Jerusalem
RAMALLAH (WAFA) 30 Oct -- ...PJS said Abdul Karim Abu Arqoub, a journalist in al-Quds daily, was
stopped and detained at Qalandia checkpoint between Jerusalem and
Ramallah without being given reasons; he was later informed that his
permit was canceled. The press release said PJS considered the Israeli decision as breaching
the freedom of the press and violating journalists.
Video: Syrian families divided by Golan fence
BBC 26 Oct -- Israeli forces are continuing the
construction of a
fence started earlier this year to separate the occupied Golan Heights
from Syrian territories. Israel says the barrier is aimed at preventing
any infiltration by Palestinians or Syrians into Israeli lands. However,
Syrian residents say the fence separates them from their families and
mother land.Ghada Nassef reports.
Settler and right-wing Israeli terrorism
Settlers stone elderly Palestinian lady
RAMALLAH (WAFA) 31 Oct -- A group of Jewish settlers Monday
stoned an elderly Palestinian lady as she was picking olives in Mukhmas,
a village southeast of Ramallah in the West Bank, according to local
sources. The 80-year-old woman was reported to be injured in the head and transferred to hospital for treatment.
Report: Palestinian restaurant set alight in Jaffa
TEL AVIV (Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- A Palestinian restaurant in Jaffa was set on
fire in a suspected "price tag" attack, Israeli daily Haaretz reported
on Monday. A local official said that the terms "price tag" and
"Kahane was right" were written on the walls. Jaffa residents reported
the incident on Monday morning.
PARC: Settlers burn 2600 Palestinian olive trees in October
(PIC) 31 Oct -- The Palestinian agricultural relief committee (PARC)
said that Jewish settlers had burnt 2600 Palestinian olive trees in
October, assessing the Palestinian farmers’ damages as a result at
around 156,000 dollars. The committee said in its monthly report issued
on Monday that the Palestinians lost on average 3.5 olive trees per hour
in October either through incineration or destruction. It noted that
53% of the losses were sustained in Nablus province followed by Salfit
province at 24%, adding that most of the attacks were carried out by
settlers with some of them committed by Israeli occupation soldiers.
Link to Palestinian Information Center
WATCH: Settler violence during olive harvest not just random fanaticism / Moriel Rothman
30 Oct -- Notes and Stories from the Olive Harvest: Palestinian farmers
tell stories of intimidation, vandalism and violence from settler
neighbors, as they attempt to harvest their olives ... the fact that the
army has been somewhat willing to fulfill its legal
obligation - established explicitly following a 2006 Supreme Court
ruling - to protect Palestinian farmers during the olive season speaks
more to successful pressure from media and civil society than it does to
any change in policy. According to a report [Hebrew] recently published
by the Israeli legal organization Yesh Din, out of the 127 cases Yesh
Din has followed since 2005 against settlers guilty of destroying of
Palestinian trees, only one has led to an indictment.
Extremist group targets released prisoners
Jerusalem (SILWANIC) 30 Oct -- Prisoners returned home to Jerusalem as
part of the Israel-Hamas prisoner swap agreement have been targeted by
an unnamed Israeli extremist group. The group has placed the freed
prisoners under highly invasive surveillance in order to gather
intelligence for the Israeli security apparatus. The group claims to
“defend the lives of Israelis and Jews”, using a network of private
detectives to track the prisoners’ moves and activities. Information
gathered is then published to the Israeli media ... Maps have been
uploaded to the group’s Facebook page showing the residences of the
Elad demands apology from Arabic newspaper
Silwan, Jerusalem (SILWANIC) -- Settler association Elad has demanded an apology from Arabic daily The Jerusalem News
for its reporting on Elad head David Biery’s abduction of 10-year old
Silwan resident Mahmoud al-Khaseeb. Khaseeb was taken by Biery,
assaulted by an Arab man and delivered to Israeli forces. Video evidence
exists of the event.
4th suspect arrested in Tuba Zanghariya mosque torching
JPost 31 Oct -- Police say man is 20-year-old from Samaria, who was
arrested in W. Bank settlement of Yitzhar; remand extension to be
requested ... The
investigation into the arson is being carried out by the Judea and
Samaria police in collaboration with the special LAHAV investigative
task force, which was launched to investigate suspected price tag'
IDF razes four West Bank outpost homes near Bat Ayin
JPost 31 Oct -- The
IDF destroyed four unauthorized homes that were in the final stages of
construction at an outpost just outside of the Bat Ayin settlement in
the West Bank early Monday morning. The demolitions come as
settlers and right-wing politicians have warned that the army intends to
demolish hundreds of unauthorized West Bank settler homes. [so,more 'price tag' attacks on the way...]
VIDEOS: Literal buzzkills: What it feels like under an Israeli drone
ISM 30 Oct -- Sami Kishawi -- Unmanned Israeli drones have been
circling over the Gaza Strip for
more than a day now. Few people outside of Gaza realize just how
psychologically torturing this can be. Not only are the drones loud and
incessant, but they also instill fear: the drones are able to fire a
projectile at you at any given moment, no warning necessary. An
independent journalist by the Twitter handle @WelshInGaza recorded
the following footage to give you an idea of what it feels like
underneath an Israeli drone during the day and during the night.
Overnight airstrike brings Gaza deaths to 12
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) -- Two militants were killed overnight Sunday as
Israeli forces targeted the Gaza Strip, bringing the death toll in the
coastal enclave to 12 since Saturday ... The Al-Ansar brigades, a military wing of the Al-Ahrar movement, said in
a statement that the victims were fighters in the group. They vowed to
retaliate for the deaths.
Army: 2 rockets fired into southern Israel
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 31 Oct 21:37 -- Two rockets were fired from the Gaza
southern Israel on Monday afternoon, causing no damage or injuries, the
Israeli army said ... As yet, no factions in Gaza have claimed the
launches. Israeli airstrikes have killed 12 militants in three days, and
a volley of rockets from Gaza killed one Israeli on Saturday.
Gaza militants renew rocket fire at Be'er Sheva, Sderot
31 Oct 19:31 -- Palestinian militants in Gaza renewed rocket fire
toward southern Israel
on Monday, launching seven rockets at Be'er Sheva and Sderot ... There
were no casualties or damage done in any of the incidents.
Envoy: Egypt truce halted Israeli incursion into Gaza
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- Egypt prevented Israel from launching a major
military incursion into Gaza and succeeded in halting the ongoing
tit-for-tat attacks across the border, the Egyptian ambassador to the
Palestinian Authority said Monday. Yasser Othman told Ma‘an that
Egyptian efforts would continue until a complete truce is reached in
Gaza and Israeli violations stop.
Netanyahu: No ceasefire, no negotiations
Ynet 31 Oct -- Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu spoke before the Likud faction on Monday, saying: "There is no
ceasefire, no negotiations and the IDF continues its operations.
Anytime someone disrupts the peace in the south -- our response will be
severe, just as it was on Saturday, and I'm telling you -- even more
Netanyahu: We do not seek a deterioration
Ynet 30 Oct -- PM says Israel's policy in Gaza includes two main
principles: 'Kill or be killed' and 'Hurt us -- on your own head be it'.
Unaware army changed its version, Netanyahu mistakenly says terror cell
gunned down Saturday was same cell that fired at Ashdod Wednesday
IDF explains terror cells' rocket attack success
Ynet 30 Oct -- Defense officials argue accurate rocket hits resulted
from weather, entrenched launcher posts, training and advanced
technology - including multi-barrel rockets. But what about the Iron
Environment official: 95 percent of the aquifer unfit for human use
GAZA (PIC) 31 Oct -- Head of the environment authority Yousuf Ibrahim
warned that about 95 percent of the water aquifer in the Gaza Strip
unsuitable for human consumption due to high levels of salinity ... The
environment official suggested that the use of rainwater can provide
some kind of solution to this problem if the ministry of local
government demanded every home and institution to necessarily establish a
big tank underground to store rainwater and then pump it directly to
the aquifer ... "We need 20 years of no use from the aquifer in order to
rehabilitate it once again," the official emphasized.
Link to Palestinian Information Center
Israel to reopen Kerem Shalom crossing
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- Israeli authorities re-opened the Kerem Shalom
crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip on Monday, according to
Palestinian liaison official Raed Fattouh. The southernmost
border crossing is the only operating entry point for commercial goods
and humanitarian aid into the coastal enclave, which is home to more
than 1.6 million Palestinians. Israeli authorities closed the crossing on Sunday, as violence flared along the border.
UNRWA: Union chief redundancy allegations 'not true'
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- The UN agency for Palestinian refugees denied
allegations that it intends to fire 2 percent of its employees, after
the suspended head of UNRWA's union said he had proof of planned mass
Union: Strike at Gaza UNRWA school to last until Thursday
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 30 Oct -- UN-run schools in the Gaza Strip went on strike on
Sunday, with protests planned to last until Thursday, a staff union
said ... The strike is in protest against UNRWA's suspension of the head of the
union, Suhail al-Hindi. Hamas sources said the UN agency had accused
al-Hindi of meeting with Hamas political officials.
Detention / Court actions
Israeli court sentences Fatah lawmaker to 30 years
NABLUS (Ma‘an) 31 Oct -- An Israeli military court on Monday sentenced
Fatah-affiliated lawmaker Jamal Tirawi to 30 years in jail, his brother
said, after a trial which ran on for four years. Tirawi's
brother told Ma‘an that the court convicted the elected official of
being a commander in Fatah's military wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs
Israeli forces detain 9 people across the West Bank
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) 31 Oct -- Israeli forces made multiple arrests overnight
Sunday and Monday morning in several districts across the West Bank. Palestinian
police said in a statement that nine people were detained after their
homes were raided in the districts of Jerusalem, Qalqiliya, Bethlehem
Israeli military forces entered the Silwan neighborhood of Jerusalem and
detained 14-year-old Abdul-Karim Shoyoukhi and 20-year-old Muhammad
al-Qaq, the statement said.
Israeli prison industrial complex in motion
ISM 30 Oct -- Lisa -- During a settler tour around the old city in
Hebron on Saturday,
where dozens of Israelis were guided around in a sort of parade, a
Palestinian man named Yousef Salim Issa Al Batch, passed by and was
stopped by Israeli police. He had a small fruit knife in his pocket and
had forgotten his ID. As a result he was arrested and taken to the
police station at the Kiryat Arba settlement at 4:15 PM.
Earlier in the day Al Batch had been cutting apples with a small knife
and forgot to take it out of his pocket ... Although Al Batch has never
been arrested before and never been in
trouble, the police officer decided to bring him to the police station
anyways. Al Batch was released at 8:30 PM after his cousin paid 1,000
shekels in cash to the police.
Gilad Shalit: The Abusisi connection / Richard Silverstein
There has been much soul-searching in the Israeli media and within the
intelligence and political echelons about the lessons learned from the
Shalit affair. Among them there have been a few references to the
Abusisi kidnapping which reinforce the impression that Mossad took him because it believed he had some connection to Shalit ... [Abusisi] was abducted because Israeli intelligence thought he could provide
information about Shalit and he didn’t. This means that all the other
nonsense about Abusisi being Hamas’ chief rocket engineer trained at a
Ukraine military engineering academy; or that the Gazan planned, with
the support of Hamas’ military wing to create a military academy in
Gaza – all this is utter nonsense.
They took him because they thought he could lead them to Shalit and
he didn’t and he couldn’t. Everything else is hot-air, including the
claim that he had any close affiliation with Hamas. Let Israel’s spooks
come down off their high horse and admit they screwed up. Abusisi
doesn’t belong in prison. He belongs home with his wife and six
Tibi visits Barghouti in prison, calls for his release
JPost 30 Oct -- MK Ahmed Tibi (United Arab List-Ta’al) visited Fatah-Tanzim leader Marwan
Barghouti at the Hadarim Detention Center in Even Yehuda on Sunday and called
for his release from prison. "Barghouti is part of the Palestinian
struggle, and should be a part of the leadership, instead of sitting behind
bars," Tibi said.
Israeli forces terrorism - West Bank
With children visible, Israeli military assaults Kufr Kaddoum
ISM 28 Oct - Rana H. -- Soldiers fired teargas directly into crowd at peaceful protesters in
Kufr Qaddoum. Internationals and Palestinians, including children, were
gathered behind barbed wire that runs across their main road, and were
not advancing when soldiers began to fire around ten canisters of tear
gas at once from a short distance ... They continued to shoot tear gas at the approximately 100 protesters for
over an hour. Many civilians from the village were affected by the
perpetual firing of tear gas. Protesters were holding signs calling on the International community
not to support Illegal Israeli settlements when the tear gas began from a
distance of only 25 metres. A Swedish International activist was not
expecting such an assault on un-advancing protesters.
"It was my first time at a protest here and I was shocked that they
would fire tear gas directly at a peaceful crowd with children visibly
Israeli Racism / Discrimination
Safed landlord kicks out Druze students
Ynet 30 Oct -- Almost a year after rabbis' letter, racism strikes in Safed once again: Less than a day after four
students from the Druze town of Buq'ata in the Golan Heights rented out
an apartment in Safed, their landlord ordered them to pack their
belongings and vacate the home. The landlord told them he received threats from ultra-Orthodox neighbors demanding he "not rent out the apartment to Arabs."
UNESCO grants Palestinians full membership
Haaretz/Reuters 31 Oct -- The United Nations' cultural agency decided on Monday to give the
Palestinians full membership of the body, a vote that will boost their
bid for recognition as a state at the United Nations.
Abbas: Granting Palestine membership in UNESCO supports our right to statehood
JORDAN (WAFA) 31 Oct – President Mahmoud Abbas told WAFA
on Monday that voting in favor of Palestine to gain full membership in
UNESCO “is for peace and represents an international consensus
supporting our legitimate national rights, at the forefront our right to
statehood. Abbas expressed his gratitude to all the countries that
voted in favor of
Palestine’s full membership in ... UNESCO. He stressed that "this vote
is not against anyone, it is only in support of freedom and justice."
Palestine to apply for full membership in WHO, says Minister of Health
RAMALLAH, (WAFA) 31 Oct -- Minister of Health, Fathi Abu Moghli
said on Monday that the ministry is preparing to apply an application
for Palestine to gain full membership in the World Health Organization
(WHO), according to a press release.
US: Palestinian membership is premature
AP/DPA/Haaretz 31 Oct -- The White House said Monday that
UNESCO's approval of full Palestinian membership is "premature" and
undermines the international community's goal of a comprehensive Middle
East peace plan. White House spokesman Jay Carney said that Monday's
vote is also a distraction from the goal of restarting direct
negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.
State Department flack tacitly concedes that US opposition to
Palestinian UNESCO membership stems from protecting Israeli interests /
Reporter Matt Lee sticks it to State Department spokesflack Victoria Nuland
(who is married to neocon analyst Robert Kagan) as she argues that U.S.
opposition to the Palestinian bid for UNESCO membership and our
immediate defunding of that body arises from our concern for a "rise in
tension" it would cause. After Lee repeatedly asks her what "tension"
the vote creates except Israeli anger, she ends the interchange charging
him with mounting a "polemic."
US cuts off UNESCO funding after Palestinian vote
WASHINGTON (Reuters) 31 Oct -- The United States said
on Monday it had stopped funding UNESCO, the U.N. cultural agency,
following its vote to grant the Palestinians full membership. U.S. State
Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters the United States
had no choice but to halt funding because of longstanding U.S. law,
saying Washington would not make a planned $60 million transfer that was
due in November.
Israel to reconsider cooperation with UNESCO after approval of Palestinian membership
Haaretz 31 Oct -- Israel rejects the decision of the General Assembly of UNESCO to grant
the Palestinians full membership of the organization, the Foreign
Ministry said Monday, and warned that Israel will now reconsider its
future cooperation with the body.
Israel to mull sanctions on Palestinian Authority following UNESCO vote
Haaretz 31 Oct -- Netanyahu to convene meeting with senior
ministers to discuss punitive measures against Palestinians after they
were granted full membership from the UN cultural body.
FM Lieberman: Israel must weigh cutting ties with Palestinian Authority
Haaretz 31 Oct -- "We need to collect a price for the diatribes, campaigns and boycotts,"
Lieberman said at a Yisrael Beiteinu party meeting at the Knesset. "We
cannot leave it without a clear response and without collecting a
Lieberman also said that Israel "needs to topple the Hamas regime as possible."
PA signs cooperation agreement with Germany
RAMALLAH (WAFA) 31 Oct -- The Palestinian Authority Monday
signed a cooperation agreement with the German government to support two
water treatment projects in the northern West Bank cities of Tulkarm
and Nablus ... The project aims to solve the water shortage problems in Nablus through
extending the water pipelines carrying water by a total of 15.6
kilometers, extending the water distribution networks and establishing
water tanks and pumps at specified locations in Nablus.
Report: Israel seeking to upgrade its nuclear weapons capabilities
Haaretz 31 Oct --Israel is working on improving its
nuclear weapons capabilities, according to a report by the independent
Trident commission in the United Kingdom that was published in the
Guardian newspaper on Monday. According to the report in the Guardian,
Israel is extending the range of its Jericho 3 land-to-land missiles so
they will have the capabilities of transcontinental missiles ... The Guardian also reported that Israel is also striving to improve and
expand the capabilities of its cruise missiles, designed to be launched
Terror victims' NGO to publish terrorist database
JPost 31 Oct -- The Almagor Victims of Terror Association plans to launch an online database of
the terrorists with descriptions of their crimes in an effort to prevent future
prisoner swaps, The Jerusalem Post has learned. The head of Almagor, Meir
Indor, believes by connecting the names of the terrorists to the specific terror
attacks they committed, the public will be less likely to support prisoner swaps
in the future.
73 get suspended terms for Israeli Embassy attack
AFP 31 Oct -- An Egyptian military
court on Monday handed down six-month suspended jail sentences to 73
people accused of involvement in the attack on the Israeli embassy
in September, a military source said. Two other people were acquitted.
Tunisia issues arrest warrant for Arafat's widow
TUNIS (Reuters) 31 Oct -- Tunisian authorities issued an international arrest
warrant for Suha Arafat, widow of the late Palestinian leader Yasser
Arafat, as part of a corruption probe into Tunisia's former first
family, the justice ministry said on Monday.
Analysis / Opinion
Settlers succeeding in hostile takeover of Israel / Gideon Levy
Haaretz 30 Oct -- Do you really want to live in a country
where the heads of the settlement enterprise allocate its lands, plan
its nature sites, rule on its laws and are increasingly controlling its
lifestyles? -- Phase I was long since declared an unqualified success:
gained control of the occupied territories, using their power and their
construction projects to thwart any just arrangement. But anyone who
thought they would settle for controlling the West Bank should take a
look at Phase II of the plan, which is at its height and already a
Now, after the hostile takeover of the West
Bank, comes the takeover of the state.
Essays on the latest Quartet initiative
Bitter Lemons 31 Oct -- Two Palestinian ('The Quartet
facade' - Sam Bahour; 'A serious challenge' - Ghassan Khatib) and two
Israeli ('Pointless and depressing' - Yossi Alpher; and 'A dangerous
illusion of conflict management' - Akiva Eldar)
Israel's blindness calling its decline / Yitzhak Laor
Haaretz 31 Oct -- Netanyahu can call the prisoners he
frees "murderers," and emotionally eulogize Rehavam Ze'evi. He prefers a
strong Hamas, since he prefers a dead end. This is why he prefers to
leave in prison the two most important Palestinian leaders - Marwan
Barghouti and Ahmad Saadat - behind bars.
|For further information contact Shadi Fadda