||Today in Palestine! ~ Headlines ~
Attacks on Protests Against Land Theft / Land, Property Theft & Destruction / Ethnic Cleansing / Apartheid|
Over 300 people from Kafr Qaddum were joined yesterday by a number of
Israeli and International activists for their weekly Friday protest
against settler encroachment on the village lands. Kafr Qaddum has seen
its agricultural lands shrink since 1967, when the illegal settlement of
Qedumin was established. In 2003 the army and settlers blocked the road
that leads Kafr Qaddum directly to Nablus. The reason given by the army
for the road closure was ‘security’. According to them, the security of
the settlers was at risk due to the proximity of the road to some of
Qeumim’s houses. In reality, Israel is looking to build a wall to
surround the settlement of Qedumin. By cutting access to the road, it is
paving the way for the Wall’s route. In the meantime, the road closure
and forced re-route, has added 10 Km to the journey to Nablus from Kafr
Qaddum and drastically limited farmers’ access to their lands.
The mood was celebratory following the weekly protest this Friday in
Kufr Qaddoum, after demonstrators succeeded in pushing back Israeli
soldiers for the second week in a row. The goal of the protest was to
open the main road to regional population center of Nablus, closed since
2003 by the Israeli Occupation Force in spite of international and
Israeli courts demanding its reopening. Though the soldiers greeted
unarmed protesters with scores of tear gas canisters–many at eye-level,
an illegal tactic intended to severely injure and kill–no injuries were
reported, and in the end soldiers, and not villagers, withdrew.
Jerusalem Municipality demolishes a house under construction in Shufat
Under the pretext of illegal building, the Jerusalem Municipality
bulldozed a house under construction in Shufat, Jerusalem on Monday, 16
January 2012. This house belongs to Shufat resident Muhammad Ibrahim Abu
Khdair. Abu Khdair explained that he started building the family house
in December 2011. Municipality staff came many times to photograph and
measure construction of the building. The Municipality Court then issued
a demolition order which was signed on 9 January 2012 and demanded that
Abu Khdair demolish the construction within a week or face a 150,000
NIS fine. According to Abu Khdair, he did not receive the demolition
order directly but rather found the papers on the ground in front of his
front door. Abu Khdair made the decision to demolish his house himself
to avoid the fine but was surprised on Monday, 16 January by the heavy
machinery of the municipality intending to carry out the demolition
order. Abu Khdair stated that he built the 78 square meter house to
accommodate his family of four who are currently living in his father’s
Israel confiscates more Palestinian land near Bethlehem
Israeli occupation authorities have confiscated more land belonging to
Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. The latest land grab has taken
place in the village of Alkahs, to the east of Bethlehem. The head of
the Alkahs village council, Khader Hamdan, told Quds Press that the
council "received a notice for the confiscation of 67 acres of the lands
of Alkhas village, located behind the racist apartheid wall, adjacent
to Bethlehem". The land is owned by the Hamdan family. According to Mr.
Hamdan, the Israelis have been preventing Palestinian villagers from
accessing their land since 2007. Requests for special permits for
agriculture and farming made by the council have been refused by the
Israelis from the same year.
Ten new demolition orders issued in Ein Aluzeh
A large contingent of Israeli forces accompanied employees of the
Jerusalem Municipality while they delivered new demolition orders to
house owners in Silwan. Ten demolition warnings were given in Ein
Mobile checkpoints and traffic tickets cause confrontations
On Wednesday, Israeli forces constructed multiple mobile checkpoints
throughout Silwan, particularly targeting the Wadi Qadoom junction and
the northern entrance of Wadi Hilweh. Israeli Forces issued traffic
tickets, described by the Palestinian residents as arbitrary and
discriminative as they were only issued to Palestinians. Confrontations
broke out when one of the Israeli police officers issued an unfair
ticket to a resident of Beer Ayoob. As a result, some youth attacked the
police jeep breaking the windshield. According to residents, there were
In Jerusalem, national parks seen by Palestinians as a land grab (The Christian Science Monitor)
The Christian Science Monitor - An Israeli government plan to create a
greenbelt around Jerusalem, preserving the ancient city's natural beauty
and archaeological wealth, is fueling opposition among Palestinians and
their supporters as the project moves into a critical stage.
Israeli army bombards Gaza; no injuries reported
The Israeli Air Force bombarded, Saturday, an area in the Gaza Strip
leading to no injuries; an Israeli military spokesperson claimed that
the attack targeted resistance fighters who fired a Qassam homemade
shell into the Negev leading to no damage or injuries.
link to www.imemc.org
Resistance fighters survive Israeli raid
A group of Palestinian resistance fighters survived an Israeli air raid
on their position to the east of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip, on
Saturday, local sources said.
Two Israeli laborers attempt to assault two children
On Sunday, 15 January 2012 while a work crew was laying concrete slabs
to reinforce excavation around Wadi Hilweh Street in Silwan, two workers
attempted to assault two children after one of the children spoke out.
The child reportedly said to his friend, “the road isn’t safe and the
workers don’t care if any of these concrete walls fall on you so be
careful.” Upon hearing this, the workers cursed the children and one of
them tried to physically assault one of the children. Silwan residents
in the area prevented the assault. The excavation in Silwan reinforces
settlement activities in the neighborhood and construction to support
the excavation frequently shuts down Wadi Hilweh Street, a main access
road in Silwan. On Monday, the street was closed suddenly in order to
lay the concrete slabs which will be used to connect two tunnels between
the land of the Al Qaraeen and Sumrain families, which has been taken
from the palestinian families inorder to establish the City Of David
Visitors Center settlement .
On Sunday, the 16th of January, at approximately 2 AM, about fifty
settlers, accompanied by Israeli soldiers, entered the Abu Haikal
family’s field in the neighborhood of Tel Rumeideh in Hebron. After
throwing stones at the family’s house, they savagely burnt the car of
Hana Haikal, fifty-three years old.
Political Detainees (Human Rights Activists, Elected Officials, Children...)
Israeli occupation forces arrest Palestinian human rights team
Israeli occupation forces arrested a Palestinian human rights team in
occupied Jerusalem while documenting the arrest of a Jerusalemite boy on
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- Senior Islamic Jihad member Khader Adnan entered
the 34th day of a hunger strike on Friday. Adnan was detained by Israeli
forces on Dec. 17 from his Jenin home. He has been on a hunger strike
since his arrest to protest against his treatment by prison authorities.
The Islamic Jihad leader said that after being arrested an Israeli
interrogator dragged him to the floor by his beard. The Israeli officer
then used Adnan's beard to polish his shoes, Adnan told a lawyer from
the prisoners society.
Al-Ashqar: “26 Elected Legislators Currently Imprisoned By Israel”
Palestinian Researcher, specialized in detainees’ affairs, Riyadh
Al-Ashqar, reported that the number of elected Palestinian legislators
currently imprisoned by Israel arrived to 26 after Israel kidnapped on
Friday the head of the Legislative Council, Dr. Aziz Dweik, and
Legislator Khaled Tafesh.
Prosecution of Jawad Siyam, Director of the Wadi Hilweh Information Center
A few days ago, the Magistrate Court unexpectedly summoned the director
of the Wadi Hilweh Information Center, Jawad Siyam, to a hearing held
on Tuesday, 17 January. His private lawyer was informed that the charges
against him would be compared with the charges filed against him in
2011 and considered accordingly, meaning that he would effectively be
re-tried on the same charges. Siyam was arrested multiple times during
the first four months of 2011 which he spent between house arrest and
prison. Siyam was cleared of all charges in 2011.
IOF soldiers round up 4 Palestinians in Al-Khalil
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested four Palestinians in Al-Khalil
province at dawn Saturday including two brothers, local sources said.
Confrontations break out in the neighborhood of Beer Ayoob
In the afternoon of Tuesday, 17 January, confrontations broke out as
police carried out arrests in the neighborhood of Beer Ayoob, south of
Silwan, after a short period of relative calm.
Three youth released into house arrest
A Magistrate Court judge decided to release three youth, Abd Ateyah
Qwaider, Abd Al Lateef Qaqoor, and Fuad Rwaidi who were arrested from
inside a grocery shop 6 days ago accused of intending to throw Molotov
cocktails at a military jeep. The Israeli General Prosecutor failed to
prove the charges as the police claim of finding the Molotov cocktail
near the grocery store was insufficient evidence for a conviction.
Despite the lack of evidence, the judge did not dismiss the charges but
rather placed the youth under house arrest.
Verdict delayed for Islam Oudeh and Ahmad Al Ghoul
On Thursday, 17 January the Israeli Central Court delayed the verdict on
the case against Ahmad Al Ghoul, 22, and Islam Oudeh, 19, to the 13th
of February 2012. Al Ghoul and Oudeh were arrested and accused of
throwing Molotov cocktails targeting settlers.
18 Jan. '12: Three years since Operation Cast Lead: Israeli military utterly failed to investigate itself
Three years after Operation Cast Lead, the Israeli military's argument
against independent investigation of its conduct during the operation
has proven to be hollow. The military has completely failed to
investigate itself, regarding both policy choices and the conduct of the
forces in the field in particular cases.
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Two Palestinians were injured Saturday when a
tunnel collapsed along the border between Gaza and Egypt, a medical
official said. Adham Abu Salmiya said the workers were moderately
injured. They were transferred to the Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital in
Rafah, which borders Egypt.
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) -- Egyptian Army forces arrested three
Palestinians attempting to enter the Sinai peninsula via underground
tunnels. Security sources in Egypt said the suspects confessed to trying
to enter the peninsula via tunnels underneath Rafah.
Gaza builders lead economic recovery – with some help from the black market
Booming construction industry beats Israeli blockade as materials are
smuggled in through tunnels. For three years, Wael Arabeed did not do a
day's work. He delved deep into his life savings, accrued over 25 years
of working on construction projects in Saudi Arabia, Syria and Egypt, to
feed his family. He sold his car. He began to believe his working life
was over. But now the construction engineer has more work than he can
handle. Tossing yet another tender request on to his desk, he says: "I
have so many offers, I can't even look at them. I'm too busy."
At night I could not get to sleep. My body was trembling all over and no
matter what I did to try to calm myself, I could not stop this
trembling. I know now that baba was terribly worried about me, but then I
was so lost in a gripping, paralyzing fear that everything and everyone
seemed far away even when they were standing in the same room as I. I
was in a jar with thick, distorting glass around me. Every time a bomb
exploded, something in my head would go “pop” and all the people and
things in our flat around me disappeared. Then I would be ‘awake’ again,
watching baba’s and mama’s faces to look for some sign of relief in
their eyes, but it wasn’t there, so the fear kept hold of me. I remember
almost nothing about what I did to make the time pass during those
Protests / Activism
Residents of Bustan hold Friday prayers in the protest tent
Dozens of residents of the Bustan neighbourhood of the Silwan suburb of
occupied Jerusalem held the Friday prayers in their protest tent.
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Over 100 Palestinians demonstrated Saturday in the
occupied West Bank urging their leaders to cease negotiations with
Israel, in a second week of protests. Protesters had gathered a week
earlier outside the presidential compound in Ramallah and urged an end
to negotiations between Saeb Erekat and Yitzhak Molcho in Jordan. The
PLO "retreated from its earlier position that they will not return to
negotiations, until settlement expansion is halted and all the political
prisoners were released," organizers said earlier in the week.
Protest by young activists against futile negotiations
The Muslim Youth Association in the West Bank called for a rally outside
the Mukata' to protest the PA's decision to return to futile
negotiations with the Israeli occupation.
In a blatant demonstration of the Palestinian Authority’s colossal gap
between the interests of itself and the people it claims to represent,
unelected chief negotiator Saeb Erekat will meet up with his Israeli counterpart Yitzhak Molcho
the fourth round of talks in Amman, Jordan on January 25th. The
announcement came barely a day after Palestinians protested against the
farcical negotiations in front of the PA compound of al-Muqata’a in
NABLUS (Ma’an) -- Dozens of supporters of the Palestinian People's Party
rallied in Nablus on Saturday in protest of a recent increase in taxes
by the Palestinian Authority. Several leaders from other Palestinian
factions joined the demonstration in Shuhada square, a Ma'an reporter
said. Protesters waved flags and banged empty cooking pans to symbolize
how they say the tax hike will affect their ability to provide food for
Palestinian Activists Play Football During Protest Against Israeli Checkpoint
On Saturday January 21, 2012, the Popular Committee in Beit Ommar
organized its weekly protest in coordination and cooperation with the
Popular Committee of Yatta, the Palestine Women’s Struggle Committee,
and supported by Israeli and international solidarity activists. The
demonstration was held for the first time in from of the Tunnel
checkpoint, along the road connecting the city of Hebron with Jerusalem.
Tunnel and connecting road is prohibited for use by Palestinians, and
is part of Israel’s wider apartheid infrastructure in the West Bank.
About 90 people, a large number of them Palestinian women, arrived at
the entrance to the tunnel and began playing football.
Solidarity / BDS
Now Is the Time to #OccupyAIPAC
Ever since the Occupy movement burst on to our political landscape last
fall and reinjected energy into the movement to make government serve
the 99 percent instead of the elites,we've enthusiastically joined
forces by doing teach-ins at Occupy protests across the country and
sending hundreds oforganizing packets to empower local activists to end
military aid to Israel.
US-led normalization efforts are taking a toll on the Jordanian potato
farmers as Israeli potatoes have flooded the market, threatening local
In the line of fire: Tom Hurndall
I don't know if I met Tom Hurndall. He was one of a bunch of 'human
shields' who turned up in Baghdad just before the Anglo-American
invasion in 2003, the kind of folk we professional reporters make fun
of. Tree huggers, that kind of thing. Now I wish I had met him because –
looking back over the history of that terrible war – Hurndall's
journals show a remarkable man of remarkable principle. "I may not be a
human shield," he wrote on 17 March from his Amman hotel. "And I may not
adhere to the beliefs of those I have travelled with, but the way
Britain and America plan to take Iraq is unnecessary and puts soldiers'
lives above those of civilians. For that I hope that Bush and Blair
stand trial for war crimes."
Racism / Discrimination
Knesset members furious with Balad MK for meeting with Hamas officials.
National Union demands House revoke her parliamentary immunity; urges AG
to file treason charges.
More Arab MKs met with Hamas official
MK Hanin Zoabi is not alone: new images show United Arab List-Ta'al MKs
Msud Ganaim and Ibrahim Sarsur visiting Hamas official Aziz Dwaik days
prior to Zoabi's visit.
'MKs who met with Hamas should move to Gaza'
Knesset members up in arms over report on meeting between Arab MKs,
Hamas figures. 'Revoke their immunity and wages. We must act firmly
against those who betray Israel,' says MK Michaeli.
Law's preamble quotes Shin Bet security service assessment that
Palestinians applying for family unification constitute 'a heightened
potential security risk.'
'Curse of racism rampant in Israel'
Thousands have attended protests in Jerusalem over racial discrimination
within Israeli law and society against mainly the Jewish Ethiopian
If this happened in Iran, the world would be mocking: Photo of Ruti Fogel blurred for modesty
Religious Zionism center Meir Institute publishes weekly bulletin with
photo slain family, but blurs face of mother due to policy forbidding
publication of women's photos. 'Mistake caused by human error, our
apologizes,' states center.
Political Developments / Diplomacy
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Hamas leader Khalid Mashaal confirmed on Saturday
that he does not seek renomination as head of the party's politburo in
upcoming elections. A statement from Mashaal's office said the
leader-in-exile told the Hamas Shura Council that he will not stand
again, but will continue to serve his people, his movement, and the
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Gaza premier Ismail Haniyeh will run to replace
Khalid Mashaal as head of Hamas in upcoming party elections, according
to press reports. Haniyeh's recent international tour intends to raise
his profile among leaders in the region before elections, Italian news
agency AKI reported, quoting Hamas sources. The prime minister in the
Hamas-run government in the Gaza Strip met leaders in Sudan, Egypt,
Tunisia and Turkey in recent weeks, and will travel to Qatar, Bahrain
and Iran in February.
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Saturday
that his Hamas-led government will allow the return of 80 Fatah
supporters who left the Gaza Strip when his Hamas party took
power. Fatah affiliates fled Gaza after fierce clashes between forces
from the rival factions in mid-2007, which led to the establishment of
separate administrations and security forces in the Gaza Strip and West
A delegation of members of the Palestinian Legislative Council travelled
to Switzerland to attend a meeting on parliamentarians under threat.
Sarkozy calls Mideast peace Quartet 'a failure' (AP)
AP - French President Nicolas Sarkozy says the so-called Quartet of
Mideast negotiators is a failure and a new method for finding peace is
Obama begins push for Jewish support in 2012 by touting the ‘unbreakable bond’ between Israel and the US, Adam Horowitz
Still thinking of voting for Barack Obama? This video certainly serves
as a useful compendium of the ways he has disappointed those who hoped
he would bring "change" to US foreign policy. The JTA reports that David
Axelrod "e-blasted" this video out today as Obama’s Jewish campaign
began in earnest.
US general in Israel as France warns against Iran strike
America's top general flew into Israel on Friday for talks that
observers believe are aimed at restraining the Jewish state from a
unilateral strike against Iran. In a visit set to last a few hours,
General Martin Dempsey is meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Israel's military chief,
Lieutenant-General Benny Ganz, and President Shimon Peres. The general
urged greater cooperation between the two states regarding Iran's
nuclear program, which both fear is covertly developing weapons
capability despite Tehran's strong objections.
Israeli sources have revealed that the United States has called upon the
King of Jordan to appoint a new ambassador in Tel Aviv. According to a
radio report on Thursday, the chair of the US House of Representatives
Foreign Affairs Committee touched upon the issue of bilateral relations
between Israel and Jordan in her meeting with King Abdullah II during
his visit to Washington. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen invited the King to name a
new ambassador from his country to the Zionist state. The Jordanian
ambassador's position in Tel Aviv has been vacant for nearly two and a
half years. The government in Amman has refrained from naming a new
ambassador to replace Ali Ayed because of what it describes as a
"negative policy" adopted by its Israeli counterpart in the political
process for the resolution of the Israel-Palestine conflict.
AMMAN (Ma'an) -- Jordan's foreign minister has summoned the Israeli
ambassador over a letter sent by Israel's parliament head to his
Jordanian counterpart, which Jordan says breaches diplomatic rules, the
country's media reported. Al-Masri, who was born in Nablus, notified
Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh of the private correspondence,
which he said broke rules governing diplomatic channels between the
countries. He also objected to the letters' content, al-Ghad noted,
saying it contained "fallacies and political claims that contradicted
Jordan and the international community’s attitude towards the question
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma'an) -- Egyptian security forces in the northern
Sinai say they have thwarted an attempt to bomb a natural gas line in
the northern Sinai leading to Israel. A group of unknown armed men
targeted the line in Rommana village near Beir al-Abed, placing
explosive devices underneath the pipes, security officials told Ma'an on
Saturday. Security forces opened fire toward the suspects who fled the
scene. Army and police forces searched the area for other bombs and
used search dogs to track the suspects.
CAIRO (Reuters) -- Egypt's deposed leader Hosni Mubarak played no part
in drawing up a deal to export Egyptian gas to Israel that prosecutors
say helped line the pockets of one of his associates, Mubarak's lawyer
said Saturday. Mubarak, ousted last February in a street revolt, is on
trial over the killing of protesters during the uprising as well as
corruption and abuse of power during his three-decade tenure. He is
charged with approving the gas agreement with Israel. Prosecutors say it
was a bad deal for Egypt and allowed businessman Hussein Salem to make
US considers closing embassy in Syria
Warning follows deterioration of security, US official tells Al Jazeera, as Syrians rally in support of detainees.
Deadly bus explosion hits Syria's Idlib
Vehicle carrying prisoners attacked near Turkish border, day ahead of Arab League meeting to decide on observer mission.
At least 20 Iraqis were killed and seven more were wounded in a series
of small but deadly attacks. Politicians, meanwhile, continued to stoke
political tension by engaging in mass arrests.
Top Iraqi Shiite cleric urges end to crisis (AP)
AP - Iraqi authorities detained a senior Sunni official on terrorism
charges Friday, even as an aide to the country's most prominent Shiite
cleric urged politicians on both sides of the sectarian divide to end an
escalating political crisis.
Bahraini child killed in crackdown
An 11-year-old Bahraini boy has died from asphyxia after regime forces
fired toxic tear gas to disperse an anti-government protest.
Bahraini killed in regime toxic gas attack
A 25-year-old Bahraini man has died due to inhalation of toxic gas during an attack by regime forces, Press TVreports.
Bahraini Forces Attack Funeral with Tear Gas
Regime forces attack funeral of martyr Mohammad Khamis who was killed by toxic tear gas earlier.
Bahraini forces attack protesters
Bahraini regime forces have attacked protesters in several villages
across the kingdom as anti-government protests continue despite a
Bahrain Shia cleric warns troops
The leading Shia Muslim cleric in Bahrain tells his followers in a sermon to retaliate if women are attacked.
Protesters try to disrupt showpiece Bahrain Air show
Reuters - Anti-government protesters tried to disrupt the Bahrain
airshow on Thursday, burning tires which sent up columns of smoke as the
authorities attempt to show life is returning to normal in the troubled
Saudis protest against Al Saud
Anti-government protesters in Saudi Arabia have once again taken to the
streets of the eastern city of Awamiyah, calling for the downfall of the
Al Saud regime.
Afghan night raid sparks anti-U.S. protest
KABUL — Hundreds of people took to the streets in a town in northeastern
Afghanistan Thursday in protest over a night raid by Afghan and NATO
forces that allegedly killed six civilians, an official said. A woman
and a child were among the dead in the air and ground raid on Dewa Gul
Vally, a Taliban stronghold in the Chawki district of Kunar province, on
Monday night, provincial governor Fazlullah Wahidi told AFP. “The raid
was not coordinated with us. Those killed were civilians, among them a
woman and a child,” Wahidi said. “Now the people are demanding
justice.” Angry protesters in Chawki chanted slogans condemning both
NATO forces and the Afghan government as they marched through the centre
of the district, he added.
The British media regulator said the network Press TV had failed to
address concerns over its editorial independence and had not paid a
Analysis / Op-ed
Andrew Adler, the owner and publisher of the Atlanta Jewish Times, a
weekly newspaper serving Atlanta's Jewish community, devoted his January
13, 2012 column to the thorny problem of the U.S. and Israel's
diverging views on the threat posed by Iran. Basically Israel has three
options, he wrote: Strike Hezbollah and Hamas, strike Iran, or "order a
hit" on Barack Obama. Either way, problem solved!
The Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) consults with the Obama administration
on issues of anti-Semitism and has prompted a White House official to
say that comments criticizing Israel from staffers at the Center for
American Progress (CAP) were "troubling." The trouble with that, though,
is that the center has no business policing discourse on bigotry when
SWC's actions and discourse are anti-Muslim.
Not only does Newt Gingrich believe there’s no such thing as a Palestinian people, the Republican National Committee does as well
That mean that 20 years of bipartisan agreement between political
parties and the foreign policy of presidents both Republican and
Democratic, has been overturned by a resolution passed by the RNC last
week. Mitchell Plitnick reports that a nice, blond-haired white
Christian Republican lady from South Carolina has dipped her toe in the
deep waters of U.S. Middle East policy and suddenly become expert enough
at it to topple long-term consensus.
Earlier this week, Brookings Institution scholar Bruce Riedel spoke
(listen to audio here
at an Atlantic Council Iran symposium. He made some very incisive
comments which are worth mentioning. First, he began his remarks with
the colorful phrase which fittingly integrated the world political
situation with the U.S. presidential elections...
|For further information contact Shadi Fadda