Monday, September 18, 2017

9-18-2017 Hamas ready to relinquish control of Gaza – Al Monitor

Palestine's Hamas movement said on Sunday that it will dissolve the administrative committee it has formed to run the Gaza Strip and hand power over to a Palestinian unity government. The announcement follows talks between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority mediated by Egypt. Although Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas welcomed the move, his Fatah party seeks more details on the process of handing over the Gaza Strip and its border crossings. The agreement follows a series of punitive measures by Abbas against Gaza designed to pressure Hamas, such as cutting electricity payments.


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

Saturday, September 16, 2017

9/16/2017 Israeli forces raid Hebron area, detain 2 Palestinians, fire tear gas at homes Ma'an News Agency


Israeli forces raided several areas in the Hebron district overnight between Friday and Saturday, detaining two Palestinians and "showering" Palestinian homes with tear gas, according to Palestinian sources.

In the town of al-Samu, south of Hebron, Israeli forces raided and ransacked Sami Abu Arqoub's home before detaining two of his sons...Meanwhile in Hebron city, official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency reported that Israeli forces raided the area of al-Hareeqa in eastern Hebron, where they fired tear gas at civilian homes in the area, causing dozens to suffocate.   According to Wafa, the soldiers also raided and ransacked several homes in the area.  The Israeli army said they were also looking into reports of the raid in al-Hareeqa.

Israeli raids in Palestinian towns, villages, and refugee camps are a daily occurrence in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, with a biweekly average of 85 search and detention raids carried out thus far in 2017, according to UN documentation.


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

9-11-2017 Israeli authorities demolish parts of Palestinian cemetery in Jerusalem


Israeli forces on Monday morning demolished parts of the outer wall of a Palestinian cemetery in occupied East Jerusalem, according to local sourceThe fate of Jerusalem and its holy sites has been a focal point of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for decades, with numerous tensions arising over Israeli threats regarding the status of non-Jewish religious sites in the city, and the "Judaization" of East Jerusalem.

The United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization's (UNESCO) World Heritage Committee adopted a resolution in July reaffirming the international body's non-recognition of Israeli sovereignty in East Jerusalem, and condemned Israeli policies in the Old City.

The resolution referred to Israel as an "occupying power" in East Jerusalem, and stated that UNESCO "regrets the failure of the Israeli occupying authorities to cease the persistent excavations, tunneling, works, projects and other illegal practices in East Jerusalem, particularly in and around the Old City of Jerusalem, which are illegal under international law."



Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

9-14-2017 UN's list of companies linked to settlements to be published despite Israeli, US pressure – Ma’an News Agency

…Israel has tightened the noose on the BDS movement in recent months, most notably by passing the anti-BDS law, which bans foreign individuals who have openly called for a boycott of Israel from entering the country.  Furthermore, Israel has routinely condemned the UN for what it sees as their anti-Israel stance, as numerous resolutions have been passed in recent months condemning Israel's half-century occupation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and its relentless settlement enterprise that has dismembered the Palestinian territory.  However, Palestinians and activists have long pointed out that nonviolent movements, expressed both in BDS activities and raising awareness on the international stage, are some of the last spaces to challenge Israel's occupation, as Israeli forces have clamped down on popular movements in the Palestinian territory, leaving many Palestinians with diminished hope for the future.


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

9-16-2017 MADA denounces Gaza sentencing of female Palestinian journalist battling cancer - Ma'an News Agency


The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) released a statement on Thursday denouncing a Gaza court's absentia decision to imprison a female Palestinian journalist who is currently in Jordan receiving cancer treatment. 

According to MADA, the Gaza Magistrate Court sentenced journalist Hajar Muhammad Abu Samra to six months in prison and a fine of 1,000 shekels ($284) over an investigative report done by Abu Samra or the Arab television network more than a year ago about corruption in the Medical Referrals Department in the Ministry of Health in Gaza Strip…



Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

9-15-2017 Two Hamas militants die in Gaza tunnel collapse – Middle East Eye


Khalil al-Dimyati, 32, and Yusef Abu Abed, 22, were killed after two tunnels used for military purposes collapsed…Hamas has built a network of tunnels inside Gaza, as well as some under the Israeli border.  During the last round of conflict in 2014 attack tunnels were one of Hamas's most effective weapons.  Other tunnels are used for smuggling from Egypt, although many have been destroyed by the Egyptian authorities in recent years.  Several dozen Hamas members have died in tunnel collapses in the past year.

Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

9-13-2017 Jewish Americans -- Still Liberal After All These Years - Ron Skolnik Jewish Currents



Ron Skolnik observes, "If there's news in the American Jewish Committee's just-released 2017 survey of American Jewish opinion, it's that there's little earth-shattering in it at all. American Jews, the survey's data indicate, remain solidly left-of-center, Democrat in party affiliation, and overwhelmingly anti-Trump. And while hawkish, brook-no-criticism-of-Israel elements often seem to dominate the discourse in the American Jewish community, the AJC interviews, like previous public opinion polls, suggest that, numerically speaking at least, they represent only a small fraction of all Jewish Americans." …opposition to Palestinian statehood among American Jews actually dropped to 40 percent, compared to 47 percent in 2013.


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

Friday, September 15, 2017

9-14-2017 Israel threatened to charge PA for Gaza power, to avert humanitarian crisis, - Avi Issacharoff Times of Israel

Israel has threatened the Palestinian Authority that it deduct money from taxes it collects on behalf of the PA, in order to cover the cost of supplying electricity to the Gaza Strip. Already-limited power supplies in the coastal enclave have been further squeezed amid a spat between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority over who should pay for the power. Israel made the threat in a July 17 letter seen by The Times of Israel. Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai told PA Minister of Civil Affairs Hussein al-Sheikh that due to the serious humanitarian considerations supplies must be restored one way or another.


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

Monday, September 4, 2017

9-3-2017 Palestinian poet's show trial goes on stage for all to see - Yoav Haifawi +972

Hundreds of Palestinians and Jews came to show support for Palestinian poet Dareen Tatour last week, who has been under house arrest for almost two years for publishing a poem on Facebook… Gaby Lasky, Tatour's lawyer, spoke about the paradox at the core of the indictment. Following the murder of Palestinian teen Muhammad Abu Khdeir at the hands of three Jewish Israelis in 2014, Tatour published a status in which she wrote "I'm the next martyr." While her intention was to protest the killing of the innocents and the notion any Arab in this country could be killed for no reason, her prosecutors misinterpreted it as a call to violence…


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member

Sunday, September 3, 2017

8-31-2017 Following pressure, Israel halts decision to revoke Al Jazeera reporter's credentials - staff +972

The government sought to revoke Elias Karram's press accreditation after he expressed solidarity with the Palestinian struggle. The decision was reversed following pressure by the Union of Journalists in Israel. 


Posted by Judith Ferster, AIME member