Occupied: Headlines From Palestine

Blogging From Gaza, Palestine

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Headlines From Palestine: April 25, 2015

Israeli Occupation Forces Shoot, Injure Palestinian Near Khan Younis, Gaza

A Palestinian was shot and injured when Israeli forces opened fire east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip.

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fayah ali

17 Year Old Ali Abu Ghannam Murdered By Israeli Forces Last Night

A 17-year-old Palestinian was shot dead at the Al-Zayyim checkpoint in occupied East Jerusalem after allegedly attempting to stab checkpoint officers just past midnight on Saturday.

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Israeli Occupation Soldiers Assault Palestinian Farmers Near Nablus

Several Israeli soldiers held several Palestinian farmers and shepherds and assaulted them late Friday near the Yitzhar Street in southern Nablus, locals told Ma’an.

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WATCH: Israeli Occupation Officer Attacks, Throws Stones At Photojournalists

Video shows Israeli photojournalist and AFP photographer being attacked by Israeli soldiers at the weekly protest against the occupation in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh. One Palestinian protester is reportedly shot with live fire.

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PLO, UNRWA Pledge To Continue To Aid Refugees

PLO Executive Committee Member Hanan Ashrawi met with UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krahenbuhl on Thursday to discuss the ongoing crisis for refugees in Gaza and Yarmouk.

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Israeli Occupation Denies South African Education Minister Entry To Palestine

The South African minister of higher education said late Thursday that he had been denied entry to Palestine by Israeli authorities in revenge for political stances against Israeli policies.

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Two UNESCO Motions Against Israeli Violations In West Bank, Gaza Blockade And Child Murder

UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, on Tuesday received two motions strongly condemning Israeli occupation’s humanitarian and legal violations in the occupied West Bank and Gaza.

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Israeli Occupation Denies South African Education Minister Entry To Palestine

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The South African minister of higher education said late Thursday that he had been denied entry to Palestine by Israeli authorities in revenge for political stances against Israeli policies.

“This is not only an act against him, but also an act against him as a member of the Cabinet, so by extension it’s an anti-government protest by Israel,” spokesperson Khaye Nkwanyana told South African news website News24.

Minister Blade Nzimande was due to travel to the West Bank for a six-day working visit to discuss collaborations between the University of Johannesburg and Palestinian universities, a follow up to an agreement signed when Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas visited South Africa last year.

The Ministry said, however, that the Israeli consulate refused to grant him a visa as a result of his political views in what is being labeled an “attack” on the South African government itself in the local press.Nkwanyana said that the visa rejection was creating a “serious diplomatic problem,” noting that it effectively barred all South African officials from visiting both Palestine as well as Israel.

All travel in and out of the West Bank is controlled by Israel, meaning that Israeli military authorities hold ultimate control over any individual trying to reach the Palestinian territories.

“We must just boycott Israel,” the minister said in a statement to the press, adding that Israel was trying to “minimize the number of people who can actually see what is happening on the ground.”

He also said that he would urge South African institutions of higher education to cut their ties to Israeli institutions. Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki condemned the move in a statement released on the official Palestinian news agency Wafa.”Israel’s policies would not succeed in isolating the Palestinians,” he said. “It will only embolden them into more struggle for ending Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.

“South Africa is a vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause and numerous government officials have repeatedly compared the Israeli occupation and the systematic discrimination practiced against Palestinians to the racial apartheid policies practiced by the South African government against its black citizens until 1994.

Israeli authorities have repeatedly denied entry to officials from other countries and even from international bodies such as the United Nations that it feel have taken antagonistic political stances.In January, the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes, and consequences, Rashida Manjoo said she had been denied entry by Israel. She said she had tried for months to get permission to enter in order to undertake a fact-finding mission, but had been refused entry.In November, Israeli authorities banned the Colombian foreign minister from visiting the West Bank after discovering that she did not plan to meet with Israeli officials as well.

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Headlines From Palestine: November 27, 2014


Heavy Storms Flood Gaza

gaza 3 gaza1 gaza2 nafaq

Gaza Ministry Stops Importing Israeli Occupation Fruit

The Gaza Ministry of Agriculture on Wednesday announced that it will stop importing Israeli fruit to the besieged enclave after Israeli authorities prevented vegetables from Gaza from entering the West Bank at the Kerem Shalom crossing.

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Terror Attacks

Palestinian Child Saved from Settlers’ Kidnapping Attempt in Hebron, Man Attacked and Injured by Israeli Terrorists

Israeli settlers Thursday attempted to kidnap a Palestinian minor to the south of Hebron, while other settlers attacked a car shop and its owner in Qalqilia, according to security sources.

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Political Prisoners

Israeli Occupation Detains Mother, 2 Children While Visiting Jailed Husband

Israeli forces on Wednesday detained a Palestinian woman and her two infant children during a visit to her jailed husband, a prisoner rights group said.

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Israeli Occupation Assault Disabled Mother and Daughter in E Jerusalem, Arrest Both

 Disabled Fifty five-year-old Jerusalemite Nadya al-Maghribi along with her daughter Amani, 22, were assaulted by Israeli police forces on Tuesday before arresting the daughter, whereas the mother was arrested on Wednesday while she was attending a court hearing for the daughter.

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Israeli Occupation Forces Detain 5 Palestinian Youths In East Jerusalem

Israeli forces detained five Palestinians overnight Wednesday in dawn raids in East Jerusalem, a prisoner rights group said.

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West Bank and Occupied Lands

al aqsa

Apartheid Israeli Occupation Bill Pushes For OUTLAWING Muslim Guards In al-Aqsa

Israeli security officials are pushing a bill that would outlaw the presence of Muslim guards that patrol the al-Aqsa mosque, Israel’s Haaretz newspaper reported.

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Hanin Majadli


Israeli Palestinians Stamp Facebook Photos With ‘Second–Class Citizen’

Hundreds join Facebook campaign to protest Jewish nation–state bill which, they say, makes their inferior status ‘official’

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South Africa Urges Halt To Israeli Settlements As President Abbas Visits

Israel’s settlements policy is “undermining” prospects for a two state solution, South African President Jacob Zuma said Wednesday as he welcomed President Mahmoud Abbas on a state visit.

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Central Election Commission Signs 2-year Funding Agreement with Norwegian Government

The Central Election Commission and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs signed on Wednesday a two-year agreement to fund a two-year project that aims at supporting the principles of democracy and good governance in Palestine.

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South Africa Urges Halt To Israeli Settlements As President Abbas Visits

PRETORIA (AFP) — Israel’s settlements policy is “undermining” prospects for a two state solution, South African President Jacob Zuma said Wednesday as he welcomed President Mahmoud Abbas on a state visit.

“We reiterate our call for the total cessation of all settlement activities,” Zuma told a joint news conference with Abbas.

South Africa was ready to assist with negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians and had appointed two special envoys for the task, Zuma added.

Abbas said the Palestinians sought to benefit from South Africa’s “successful experiences” in building an independent state.

“We are the last nation in the world that is still living under occupation,” he said.

Zuma’s ruling African National Congress is a firm supporter of the Palestinian cause, with politicians regularly comparing Israel to the former racist apartheid state in South Africa.

The white minority government had cooperative relations with Israel, but when Nelson Mandela was elected first democratic president in 1994, he pledged to support Palestine, saying: “South Africa’s freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

Abbas was greeted with a 21-gun salute at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa’s administrative capital.

He has visited South Africa before — last year he attended Mandela’s funeral — but officials said this is his first state visit.

“People of South Africa and Palestine have a strong bond built in the trenches of our two struggles, we want to build even stronger relations and cooperation based on that historical relationship,” said Zuma.

Abbas’ visit comes days after UN chief Ban Ki-moon urged Israel and the Palestinians to “step back from the brink” and return to peace talks amid European moves toward recognizing Palestine.

His comments reflected international alarm over the spate of violent attacks in East Jerusalem and the deadlock over peace talks that are fueling fear of another flareup after the war in Gaza earlier this year.

With no political solution in sight, governments and parliaments in Europe are moving towards Palestinian recognition, with France’s National Assembly set vote on a non-binding resolution on Dec. 2.

That follows Sweden’s announcement that it will recognize Palestine and non-binding votes in the British and Spanish parliament in favor of recognizing Palestinian statehood.

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Headlines From Palestine: November 23, 2014


  • Muhammad Fadil Halawa, 32 ,shot and killed by Israeli occupation soldiers east of Jabaliya in north Gaza
  • Cold, wet and miserable for people struggling to survive. Tens of thousands still sheltering in UNRWA schools and thousands of others living in makeshift tents after Israeli Occupation destroyed their homes.


West Bank and Occupied Lands

ramallah 3

Israeli Terrorists Torch Palestinian Home Near Ramallah

Israeli settlers set fire to a Palestinian home northeast of Ramallah early Sunday, an official told Ma’an.

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Video Analysis Shows Occupation Soldier Shooting and Killing Palestinian Teen Nadeem Nawara

Defense for Children International Palestine published a video analysis conducted by Forensic Architecture identifying the Israeli occupation soldier who shot and killed Nadeem Nawara, 17, six months ago in the West Bank city of Beitunia.

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Israeli Terrorists Beat Palestinian From Tubas

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AFP File Said Khatib

AFP File Said Khatib

HRW: Punitive Israeli House Demolitions A ‘War Crime’

Human Rights Watch called on Israel Saturday to stop razing the homes of Palestinians accused of attacking Israelis, saying the practice can constitute a war crime.

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Ma'an Images

Ma’an Images

Israeli Occupation Forces Demolish Mobile Homes East Of Ramallah Village

Israeli military bulldozers demolished Thursday mobile homes to the east of At-Tayba village to the east of Ramallah, said local witnesses.

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Political Prisoners

maan 4

Israeli Occupation Arrests a Palestinian, Summons Six Others in Bethlehem, Hebron

Israeli forces Saturday arrested a Palestinian in Hebron as well as summoned six others from Bethlehem to appear for interrogation, said security sources.

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Fatah Spokesperson: Israeli Occupation’s Policies Risk Sliding Into Religious War

The policies adopted by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinian people risk sliding into the abyss of a serious religious war, said Thursday Fatah Spokesperson and Member of Central Committee Nabil Abu Rudeineh.

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Palestinians To Appeal To UN For Statehood Recognition ‘By The End Of  The Week’

The Palestinian Authority will appeal to the UN Security Council for the recognition of Palestine by the end of the week, a senior Palestinian official said Saturday.

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Belgium General Consul: Palestinian Local Authorities Play a Significant Role in Development of State of Palestine

Consul General of Belgium, Bruno Jans, praised the significant role the local authorities in Palestine play in the developing process of the state of Palestine, which he stressed consequently makes them a major priority for foreign actors.

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German Mayor: “There is no Well Being for the State of Israel without the Well Being of the Palestinian State”

Mayor of the German town of Jena, during the international conference held in Ramallah on Friday to show solidarity with the Palestinian people

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South African Mayor: ”We Need to Join Global Community in Search for Lasting Solution to Palestinian Question”

Mayor of the South African city of Johannesburg Mpho Parks emphasized his countries solidarity with the Palestinians people stressing that, ‘we have an obligation as a country and as people to work jointly in search of a lasting solution to the Palestinian question.

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Chief PLO Negotiator Erekat in South Africa to Receive Freedom Award

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) – The PLO’s chief negotiator arrived Tuesday in Johannesburg where he will receive the 2014 Global Champion for the People’s Freedom Award from the Mkiva Humanitarian Foundation in Butterworth.

Speaking at a news conference organized by the Mkiva foundation and the embassy of Palestine in South Africa, Erekat accused Israel of “committing crimes against humanity.”

He warned that Israel would be sued at the International Criminal Court, a statement from his office said.

Erekat defended the Hamas movement, which he had criticized after it fought the Palestinian Authority and took control of the Gaza Strip in 2007.

The PLO official also responded to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s comparison of Hamas to ISIS in his speech at the United Nations General Assembly.

“The alleged Islamic State led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in Iraq, there is an equal but not opposite reaction, which is the Jewish state led by Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel,” Erekat said.

The statement noted that Erekat’s remarks were a preemptive defense of the Gaza Strip in case Israel takes advantage of the ongoing anti-ISIS campaigns as a pretext to attack Palestinians there.

Erekat, who has been involved in peace talks with Israel for over 20 years, will be presented the award on Friday.

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Should Sanctions Be The Price Israelis Pay For Their Indifference To The Occupation?

They may not have single-handedly felled apartheid, but sanctions were a powerful psychological weapon against the propaganda and inertia of those in power. BDS could do the same to Israel.
By Roy Isacowitz for Haaretz

David Rosenberg’s article in Haaretz: “The myth that sanctions felled apartheid”  (September 18) draws all the wrong conclusions from all the right statistics about apartheid and sanctions, in assessing the lack of relevance of the South African example to Israel and BDS. It also makes the mistake, common among economists, of ignoring anything that can’t be tabulated.

No one who knows anything about South African apartheid believes that it was singlehandedly overthrown by sanctions. Apartheid imploded because of a number of inter-woven factors which, cumulatively, made the system unworkable and brought it to its knees. There was no single factor.

Which doesn’t mean that sanctions didn’t play a role in bringing down apartheid; it simply didn’t play the only role.

Sanctions are effective in four ways: They impact a country’s economy, they impact the personal finances of specific individuals, often those most invested in the system, they send the message that the country’s policies are unacceptable to the wider world and they damage the self-esteem of those being boycotted.

Of those four factors, Rosenberg only deals with the first – which is understandable because it is the only one that finds its way into the spreadsheets and erudite studies that he quotes. And even those figures don’t tell the full story. Divestment may have enabled South African companies to “buy multinational assets at fire sale prices,” but sanctions prevented them from obtaining both the investment and the computer systems to run and grow those assets.

Sanctions focused the minds of the – white – South African business community, which had assets but not the means to leverage them. Even before the apartheid government released Nelson Mandela from jail and began negotiating a handover of power, South African business was preparing the ground in formally illegal meetings with the African National Congress – establishing itself in effect as a potent fifth column within the apartheid state.

As for the intangible effects of sanctions, which Rosenberg doesn’t mention, they don’t have what it takes to bring down a regime, but they are certainly capable of weakening its foundations – which is precisely what they did in South Africa.

Most countries have the same need to be liked that people have. That may not be true of North Korea, say, but it was certainly true of South Africa and it is just as true of Israel. For both South Africa and Israel it was (and in Israel still is) crucially important to be seen as an integral part of the West and an intrepid fighter for western values.

South Africa presented itself not as a racist oppressor of its black citizens but as a bulwark in the fight against communism. It even sent its army to fight Cuban communists in Angola. For the apartheid regime, the failure of the West (though not the Reagan administration for several years) to see it as the anti-communist ally it thought itself to be was an abiding and tragic mystery.

Likewise Israel, which has jumped on the anti-jihadist bandwagon to portray its fight against Hamas as a forward front in the global campaign against the Islamic State/ISIS.

Sanctions were highly effective at countering South Africa’s anti-communist propaganda and keeping it in the public eye as the racist entity it truly was. They can play the same role regarding Israel; keeping the occupation and the settlements front and center, while Israel bangs on about the Islamic threat.

Sanctions are as much a psychological as an economic weapon. The effect of the sports boycott on sports-mad South Africa in the Seventies and Eighties was devastating. For one of the world’s top two rugby teams, being unable to play international rugby was both hurtful and humiliating. Did it bring down apartheid? No. it didn’t. But it certainly brought home the message that apartheid was beyond the pale and it promised a woeful future. Those are not the sort of things one finds in a spreadsheet, but their practical significance was enormous.

Not all Israelis support the occupation, but few do anything about it. Bans on international travel, on participation in international events and on visits by international teams and celebrities will go a long way towards undermining our inertia and reminding us that there is a price to pay for our indifference. If only for that reason, the BDS movement is important.

Finally, the issue of whether the policies of modern-day Israel can be described as apartheid is irrelevant. Even if there were no points of comparison between apartheid South Africa and Israel, the question of the efficacy of sanctions in changing a country’s policies is still valid – and entirely apposite.

With Iran still under sanctions and the NATO countries slapping sanctions on Russia as if there were no tomorrow, it would appear that boycotts are far from being the ineffective and debased tool that Rosenberg would have us believe. The fact that they were not the single most important factor in South Africa doesn’t mean that they weren’t effective then – nor that they couldn’t be effective against Israel now.

Roy Isacowitz is a journalist and writer living in Tel Aviv and an editor at Haaretz English.

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University of Johannesburg Blocks Hosting Israeli Academics and Lecturers

JOHANNESBURG, September 10, 2014 – (WAFA) – The academic council of the University of Johannesburg decided Wednesday not to host any Israeli academic or lecturer working in Israeli universities, said a Palestinian diplomat.

According to Palestinian Ambassador to South Africa Abdul Hafiz Nofal, the UJ Council decided not to assign Israeli academics nor accept Israeli students in its different faculties unless they sign a pledge not to cooperate with Israeli military and security institutions.

Israeli academics and students are ineligible to join the university unless they also condemn the Israeli government’s policies that not only violate Palestinian land through settlement construction and land grab, but also violate Palestinian public freedoms through arrest and humiliation as well as through denying the Palestinian people of their inalienable historical rights.

The University of Johannesburg was among the first universities which decided to boycott Israeli universities three years ago.


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South African Medical Team Arrives in Gaza

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A South African medical team arrived in Gaza on Sunday to assist in the treatment of thousands of Palestinians injured in Israel’s 51-day assault on the Strip.

In a news conference at al-Shifa hospital, the director of the Gift of the Givers Foundation said the team consisted of 10 doctors with various specializations.

The team will spend two weeks in Gaza, Dr. Imtiaz Suleiman said.

He added that the World Health Organization had sent medical supplies which were currently en route to the Strip via Egypt.

Approximately 11,000 Palestinians were injured in Israel’s seven-week offensive on Gaza, according to the Ministry of Health.