Occupied: Headlines From Palestine

Blogging From Gaza, Palestine

Leave a comment

Israeli Occupation Orders Palestinians To Halt Work On EU Funded Water Tanks (Water Apartheid)

HEBRON, August 9, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli forces ordered the village council of Khellet al-Mayyeh, a locale to the east of Yatta, south of Hebron, to stop the construction work on two water tanks funded by the European Union, Sunday reported to a local activist.

Coordinator of the popular committee against the wall and settlements, Rateb Jabour, told WAFA that soldiers handed head the of Yatta village council, Khaled Abu Humaid, a notice ordering them to stop the construction works on two 1700 cubic meters water tanks. The order cited ‘unpermitted construction’ as a pretext.

Meanwhile, soldiers photographed a number of water wells belonging to several locals in the southern part of the locale. The same soldiers photographed sheds, tents, and other water wells in the village of Umm al-Khair to the east of Yatta.

Issuance of construction permits for Palestinians living in Area C of the West Bank, under full Israeli jurisdiction, is strictly limited, forcing Palestinians residing in such areas to embark on construction without obtaining a permit.

Humanitarian and legal bodies and institutions including the United Nations, OCHA and B’Tselem confirm that the planning policies applied by Israel in Area C and East Jerusalem discriminate against Palestinians, making it extremely difficult for them to obtain building permits.

“As a result, many Palestinians build without permits to meet their housing needs and risk having their structures demolished. Palestinians must have the opportunity to participate in a fair and equitable planning system that ensures their needs are met,” OCHA reports.


Leave a comment

Headlines From Palestine: May 10, 2015

Israeli Occupation Forces Shoot 3 farmers, Take 2 Fishermen Captive In Gaza

Israeli troops shot and injured three Palestinian farmers in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip on Saturday afternoon and arrested two fishermen off Beit Lahiya’s coast, locals told Ma’an.

Continue Reading

Israel Occupation Forces Arrests Seven Palestinians in West Bank

Israeli army Sunday arrested at least seven Palestinians during predawn raids across the West Bank, according to local and security source.

Continue Reading

PLO’s Dr. Hanan Ashrawi Statement On New Israeli Extremist Government

Such a coalition betrays the true nature of the Israeli political system and promotes an anti-peace agenda and the language of racism, extremism and violence; it will further increase the isolation and deligitimization of Israel.

Continue Reading

Israeli Extremists Attack Palestinian Woman And Her Children And Teenage Girl In Hebron, Palestine

A group of Jewish settlers physically assaulted a Palestinian woman and her young children in the Old City of Hebron in the southern West Bank late Saturday, a local human rights group said.

Continue Reading

Calls By EU For Crackdown On Israeli War Crime Settlement Expansion

The European Union confirmed Saturday that the decision by Israeli authorities to expand the illegal settlement of Ramat Shlomo northeast of Jerusalem is illegal and threatens future peace in the region.

Continue Reading

Leave a comment

Calls By EU For Crackdown On Israeli War Crime Settlement Expansion

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) –The European Union confirmed Saturday that the decision by Israeli authorities to expand the illegal settlement of Ramat Shlomo northeast of Jerusalem is illegal and threatens future peace in the region.

“Israel’s determination to continue its settlement policy despite the urging of the international community, not only threatens the viability of the two state solution but also seriously calls into question its commitment to a negotiated agreement with the Palestinians, EU representative Katherine Ray said in a statement published from Brussels.

The construction of 900 homes in the Jewish-only Ramat Shlomo settlement was approved by the Israeli District Planning and Building Committee earlier this week.The plan was initially proposed in 2010 during a visit by US Vice President Joe Biden, angering the White House and threatening talks going on at the time between Israeli and Palestinian officials.EU’s Foreign Ministers unanimously called on Israel to reverse decisions for further settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem in November 2014, but to no avail.Ray added on Saturday that as settlements are illegal under international law, the EU and its Member States are “committed to ensure continued, full and effective implementation of existing EU legislation and bilateral arrangements applicable to settlements.”The approval for the Ramat Shlomo expansion came as Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu was in the final stages of piecing together a coalition government that will include the far-right Habayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home), which strongly backs settlement building and opposes a Palestinian state.In the run up to his reelection in March, Netanyahu vowed to step up settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem, which Israel captured in 1967 and later annexed in a move never recognized by the international community.


Headlines From Palestine: March 26, 2015


Red Cross: Israel Offensive Left Gaza Water Unsafe For Drinking

Israel’s offensive on Gaza last summer caused lasting and extensive damage to water, sanitation, and energy infrastructure in Gaza, according to a recent report by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Continue Reading

West Bank And Occupied Lands


Palestinian Ali Mahmoud Safi Dies From Injuries After Shot By Israeli Forces Last Week

A 20-year-old Palestinian man died on Wednesday from injuries sustained last week during clashes with Israeli forces in al-Jalazun refugee camp, medics said.

Continue Reading


Palestinian relatives and friends of the al-Kaware family carry the seven bodies to the mosque during their funeral in Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip, on July 9, 2014 AFP Thomas Coex

Palestinian relatives and friends of the al-Kaware family carry the seven bodies to the mosque during their funeral in Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip, on July 9, 2014 AFP Thomas Coex

UN Says Palestinian Death Toll Highest Since 1967

The long-running conflict with Israel claimed the lives of more Palestinian civilians in 2014 than any year since 1967, the United Nations said Thursday, in a damning report on the humanitarian situation.

Continue Reading


Israeli Occupation Forces Raid Palestinian School, Prevent Students From Leaving

Israeli forces Wednesday raided a school to the west of Ramallah, where they detained students and the teaching staff inside the school and prevented them from leaving for almost two hours, according to the school principle.

Continue Reading


Political Arrests And Prisoners

Israeli Occupation Forces Detain Five, Summon Six Palestinians From West Bank Districts

Israeli forces Thursday detained five Palestinians and summoned six others from several West Bank districts, according to local and security sources.

Continue Reading



Israeli Occupation Arrests Woman As She Visits Her Husband In Occupation Prison

The occupation authorities arrested on Monday the wife of a Jerusalemite prisoner who is detained at Eshel prison in Beer Sheva.

Continue Reading


Israel Fulfills Three of Six Criteria To Assess Violations Against Children

Ambassador Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, Thursday said during a Security Council Debate that Israel systematically fulfills three of the six criteria used to assess grave violations against Palestinians children.

Continue Reading


EU Plans To Pressure Israel To Recognise Palestinian Rights

The European Union may pressurise Israel into recognising the right of Palestine to exist following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s election campaign against a Palestinian state being created under his rule, Israeli newspapers reported on Wednesday.

Continue Reading


German Party Calls On Government To Recognise Palestine

German party Die Linke has proposed that German government recognise Palestine state.

Continue Reading


France-Based Firm Pulls Out Of Israeli Cable Car Project

France-based utility giant Suez Environnement said Wednesday that, because of political sensitivities, it has decided not to take part in a cable car project linking west Jerusalem to the annexed Eastern sector.

Continue Reading


EU Criticizes Israeli Policy In Occupied Palestine Area C

EU representatives condemned Israel’s failure to meet its obligations to Palestinians in Area C during a meeting with the Palestinian Prime Minister on Tuesday.

Continue Reading


Exposing Israel’s Arm Industry:Israeli Film Director To Tour Ireland

Feldman’s award winning film The Lab, which shines a light on the military-industrial complex in Israel and explores how it is helping to turn Palestine’s blood into Israel’s profit, will be screened in five cities and towns around Ireland between Saturday 28th March and Thursday 2nd April.

Continue Reading


Leave a comment

EU Criticizes Israeli Policy In Occupied Palestine Area C

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — EU representatives condemned Israel’s failure to meet its obligations to Palestinians in Area C during a meeting with the Palestinian Prime Minister on Tuesday.

The remarks came following Rami Hamdallah’s signing of an agreement with the EU for €3.5 million ($3.83 million) to support Palestinian communities in Area C in the occupied West Bank through the funding of infrastructure projects.

Hamdallah signed the agreement after meeting with an EU delegation to discuss recent political developments and the government’s plans regarding the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip and supporting Jerusalem, in addition to supporting Palestinians in Area C.

International donors regularly contribute to land development and infrastructure across Area C, which makes up 61 percent of the occupied West Bank and is under full military and administrative control by Israel.

While the Israeli Civil Administration is responsible for developing infrastructure in the area, any development often only supports Israeli settlers illegally living in the area, while efforts to develop existing Palestinian communities are thwarted.

As a result, Palestinians in Area C lack basic services and infrastructure including roads, waste treatment facilities, water facilities, and access to medical facilities, while gaining construction permits is generally impossible.

EU signer of the funding agreement Michael Kohler stressed the serious limitations faced by the Palestinian Authority in promoting social and economic development of Palestinian communities, while EU representative John Gatt-Rutter emphasized that Area C is an integral part of the occupied Palestinian territory, comprised of crucial natural resources and land for a viable Palestinian State.

“Without this area, the two state solution — that we have invested in for years — will be impossible,” Gatt-Rutter said at the signing.

“We call again upon Israel to meet its obligations regarding the living conditions of the Palestinian population in Area C, including by accelerated approval of Palestinian master plans, halting forced transfer of population and demolition of Palestinian housing and infrastructure, simplifying administrative procedures to obtain building permits, ensuring access to water and addressing humanitarian needs.”

Leave a comment

EU Plans To Pressure Israel To Recognise Palestinian Rights

Donia Al-Watan
The European Union may pressurise Israel into recognising the right of Palestine to exist following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s election campaign against a Palestinian state being created under his rule, Israeli newspapers reported on Wednesday.

An EU diplomatic source said that the European Union would potentially implement decisions in a report which outlines suggestions on how to pressure Israel into returning to negotiations,reported the Israeli daily Ynet.

The report – a list of 40 recommendations suggested by the heads of diplomatic missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah – is divided into four sections that recommend several steps which include preserving the viability of Jerusalem as the capital of two states, strengthening the religious and cultural identity of Jerusalem, ending East Jerusalem’s socioeconomic isolation, and strengthening the role of the EU.

Although member states have yet to approve the recommendations, there is a definite chance that recommendations will be adopted after Netanyahu’s statements during his election campaign against a Palestinian state, the source said.

“We are on a collision course,” said the diplomat. “It’s clear to everyone in Brussels that there must be a response to these statements,” reported Ynet.

The diplomat added that the EU does not believe Netanyahu’s subsequent backtracking on the creation of a Palestinian state. He said Europe is interested in having a positive relationship with Israel, but considers Israel to be an entity that does not extend beyond the Green Line – the boundaries of Israel from its founding in 1948 until the 1967 Six-Day War, reported Ynet.

“If Israel continues its policy beyond the Green Line, it will affect the relationship between European nations and Israel,” he told Ynet.

After the victory of Netanyahu in the elections, analysts have pointed towards the likelihood of a right-wing government being formed in Israel. The EU diplomat highlighted that this could consequently mean the recommendations would be taken especially seriously by the EU, reported Ynet.

The year of 2014, has been one of the tensest years in Jerusalem since the end of the Second Intifada. The kidnapping and murder of Mohammed Abu Khdeir in July 2014 after the burial of three murdered Israeli teens in East Jeruslaem triggered a 51-day offensive on Gaza, while an assassination attempt on the life of a Jewish activist caused continuous clashes in and around the city.

EU hopes for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations resumption

 The EU is keen to bring Israelis and Palestinians back to the negotiating table after the bloc’s new foreign policy chief seeking to reinvigorate European involvement in the negotiations.Israel should make “every effort to ensure an early resumption of the Middle East peace process,” the EU said in a series of annual reports assessing progress on democracy and human rights in countries close to the 28-nation bloc.

EU foreign affairs Chief Federica Mogherini, who took on her position in November, wants to involve Arab states more closely in the work of the Middle East Quartet that comprises the United States, United Nations, the EU and Russia.

Leave a comment

Headlines From Palestine: February 25, 2015


EU, UNICEF Mark Completion of Seawater Desalination Plant in Gaza

The European Union and UNICEF jointly marked the completion of the first component of a EUR 10 million desalination plant which will provide over 75,000 Palestinians with clean, drinking water in Gaza.

Continue Reading

Hate Crimes

Maan Images

Maan Images

Israeli Terrorists Burn Mosque Near Bethlehem

Extremist Jewish settlers set fire overnight Tuesday to a mosque in the southern West Bank town of al-Jabaa west of Bethlehem, locals told Ma’an.

Continue Reading

West Bank and Occupied Lands

Israeli Occupation Soldiers Prevent Palestinian Shepherds From Grazing Livestock

Israeli soldiers Tuesday chased after Palestinian shepherds and prevented from grazing their livestock in Yatta locality to the south of Hebron, according to a local activist.

Continue Reading


Palestinian Girl Hit By Vehicle Of Israeli Occupation Security Guard

A Palestinian girl suffered foot fractures and other bruises after she was hit by a vehicle belonging to security guards of Israeli settlers in Ein al-Luzah in the Silwan neighborhood in East Jerusalem.

Continue Reading


Collective Punishment: Israeli Occupation Forces Northern West Bank Into Deliberate Power Outage

Israel has cut off Wednesday electricity for an hour to Nablus and Jenin districts in northern West Bank, deliberately plunging them into a power outage.

Continue Reading

Political Arrests and Prisoners

khaled 3

International Campaign Calls For Release Of 14 Year-Old Palestinian Khalid Sheikh

Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) announced it was joining an international campaign calling for the immediate release of the Palestinian boy Khalid Husam Mahmoud Al-Sheikh, 14, from Beit Anan in Occupied Jerusalem.

Continue Reading

Khaled 2

14 Year Old Anemic Palestinian Prisoner Khaled Al-Sheikh Is A Threat To Israel’s Security

14 year old teen Khaled Al-Sheikh from Beit ‘Anan village West Jerusalem was kidnapped by Israeli forces and detained since Dec 25, under the pretext of throwing stones on Israeli soldiers.

Continue Reading


 Israel Occupation Arrests Six Palestinian In West Bank, Including Disabled Man

Israeli army arrested six Palestinians in a set of separate incidents on Wednesday, mostly during predawn raids across the West Bank, according to local and security sources.

Continue Reading

Government, Politics, World

 Israeli Occupation Steals $175 MILLION In Palestinian Tax Revenues For Third Successive Month

The Israeli government decided to withhold $175 million in Palestinian tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority (PA) for the third successive month, reported Anadolu News Agency.

Continue Reading


Leave a comment

EU, UNICEF Mark Completion of Seawater Desalination Plant in Gaza

Gaza, 25 February, 2015 (WAFA) – The European Union and UNICEF jointly marked the completion of the first component of a EUR 10 million desalination plant which will provide over 75,000 Palestinians with clean, drinking water in Gaza.

The event marked the completion of an 18-kilometer long pipeline, which will transfer 6,000 cubic meters of desalinated seawater from the desalination plant to at least 35,000 Palestinians living in Khan Yunis, and 40,000 in Rafah, southern Gaza.

In a joint press release, EU and UNICEF said the construction phase of the project, which includes four components and is led in partnership with the Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) and Gaza’s Coastal Municipalities Water Utilities (CMWU), was launched with the laying of the first stone in March last year.

‘The needs in Gaza for fresh water are huge. Nearly 95% of water in Gaza is considered unfit for human consumption. Enormous efforts are needed to ensure that Gazans can access fresh water. This is both a fundamental human right and an urgent humanitarian need for Gaza’s population,’ said the EU Representative John Gatt-Rutter.

‘The completion of this pipeline today is evidence of just part of the EU’s wider, long-standing commitment to supporting access to clean water for Palestinians. Such projects are even more essential and crucial following the war last summer in Gaza, which made already harsh living conditions for Gaza even more unbearable.’

“Limited water supply in Gaza has long meant high prices and poor water quality, but the introduction of this seawater desalination plant will help bring a dramatic improvement and help children and their families fulfill their right to safe drinking water,” said June Kunugi, UNICEF Special Representative in the State of Palestine.

“The advancement of the project is also a welcome sign of hope, six months after a ceasefire took hold in Gaza,” she added.

The construction of the desalination plant on land adjacent to the sea north of Khan Yunis and the procurement of water-treatment equipment will be completed in the coming months. The plant is expected to start operating by the end of the year.

Safe drinking water is a precious commodity in Gaza – only five percent of the water extracted from the coastal aquifer has been found to be suitable for human consumption.

Seawater desalination is one of the strategic options chosen by the Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) to help provide 1.8 million Palestinians in Gaza – including nearly one million children – with clean water.A comparative study conducted in 2011 concluded that it was an essential, pragmatic solution to provide a consistent supply of safe, drinking water to the expanding population.The desalination of seawater from the Mediterranean is essential to curb over-extraction of groundwater from the Coastal Aquifer, and to prevent an environmental disaster with the total collapse of this aquifer.

A 2012 United Nations’ report warned that over-extraction could render Gaza’s sole aquifer unusable by 2016.




Great News! 28 EU Countries To Approve Economic Boycott of Israel

February 11, 2015 (WAFA) – European Union countries are drawing up a plan to boycott Israel going into effect exactly by the end of the Israeli elections, to force Israel to end its ongoing illegal settlement expansion which continues to hinder the resumption of bilateral Palestinian-Israeli peace talks.

According to Maarif Israeli daily, 28 EU countries  will open a new front against Israel through imposing sanctions, first and foremost through labeling Israeli settlements’ products, and taking legal measures against European companies operating within the ‘green line’; the pre-1967 occupied territories.

The sanctions would also include boycotting any figures representing settlers and reconsidering European funding of Israeli projects and possible changes to the free trade agreement with Israel.

The newspaper said that Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett recently met with and scolded ambassadors of Britain, Sweden, Belgium, France, and the EU Representative, for their boycotting position.

Bennett was quoted saying, isolating Israel and shackling its economy so it can politically commit suicide is unethical because ‘we’ are the dam standing up against terrorism.


Leave a comment

Palestinian President Inaugurates New Embassy In Sweden

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday inaugurated the new headquarters of the embassy of Palestine in Sweden.

The ceremony took place in the presence of Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstroem together with other government officials and foreign ambassadors.

Abbas praised Sweden for its recognition of Palestine and said the country took a “brave step” which should be emulated by other members of the European Union.

“Such recognitions do not mean that we don’t want to negotiate with Israel,” Abbas said.

“We call upon the Israeli government to start negotiations on the basis of international legitimacy and to halt the procedures and sanctions it has taken against the state of Palestine by withholding Palestinian money.”

Abbas said that the PA would negotiate regardless of international recognition by states or the United Nations Security Council.

“It would be better for both sides to sit around the negotiation table to obtain two states, one for the Palestinians to live side by side with Israel in security and stability,” he added.

Abbas urged Israel to accept the Arab Peace Initiative of 2003, proposed by Saudi Arabia.

Sweden’s move to recognize Palestine last year prompted Israel to temporarily withdraw its Stockholm ambassador as relations between the two countries cooled.

Abbas’ visit comes a month after a senior Israeli official said Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstroem was not welcome for official visits to the country.

Wallstroem last month postponed a trip to Israel amid Israeli press reports that her counterpart Avigdor Lieberman did not want to meet her.

Ahead of Abbas’ visit, Israel’s Stockholm Ambassador Isaac Bachman described the Palestinian leader’s diplomatic efforts as a “diversion” from direct talks with Israel.