Occupied: Headlines From Palestine

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Why Palestinian MP Jarar Must Be Released From Israeli Occupation Prison

A Kafkaesque perversion of military law: Khalida Jarar must be released now

What’s the point of a military justice system if a court decision to release an accused is met with a threat by the prosecution to hold her without trial?

The continued incarceration of Palestinian parliament member Khalida Jarrar becomes increasingly outrageous.

Here is a synopsis of this Kafkaesque occupation farce: The Israel Defense Forces tried to exile Jarrar to Jericho for six months because of her political activities in the Palestinian Legislative Council and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Jarrar refused to recognize the authority of the military order or obey it.

After essentially canceling the order, the IDF decided to take revenge on Jarrar and ordered her held in administrative detention for six months without charges or trial. When the arbitrary arrest of the Palestinian elected official attracted protest from overseas, the Military Advocate General’s office decided to press charges against her.

The 12 counts in the indictment, as published by Gideon Levy in Haaretz, are nearly all hollow and ridiculous. They accuse her of activism on behalf of Palestinian prisoners, visiting the homes of prisoners who were released from Israeli prisons, giving speeches against the occupation, calling for the release of Popular Front leader Ahmed Sa’adat from prison, and even attending a book fair.

In one section the IDF accuses Jarrar of calling for soldiers to be kidnapped to facilitate the release of prisoners, but the testimony by the prosecution witness to this count is not unequivocal. In any case, this weak indictment does not justify her being held in jail.

Some 10 days ago a military judge agreed to release Jarrar on bail. But the military prosecution appealed, and the court accepted the appeal and ordered Jarrar held until the end of legal proceedings. This occurred after the prosecution threatened to return her to administrative detention if the court released her.

Before the hearing, Jarrar said, “They want to silence us, but we will continue the struggle against the oppression until we achieve our freedom.” Her trial is scheduled to begin this week.

Jarrar, who has been behind bars for two months, is a legitimate parliamentarian chosen in a democratic election. She has a clean security record and her trial looks like an attempt to punish her for her political activity. What’s the point of a military justice system if a court decision to release an accused is met with a threat by the prosecution to hold her without trial? The whole indictment against Jarrar should be thrown out, but in any case she should be released from custody immediately.


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Headlines From Palestine: May 19, 2015

Israeli Extremist Assaults 10-Year-Old Palestinian Boy In Hebron

A 10-year-old Palestinian boy was lightly injured after a Jewish settler attacked him near the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron Tuesday, locals said.

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Palestinian Children Held Captive Recount Torture In Israeli Occupation Jails

Palestinian minor prisoners arrested by Israel in recent months have indicated a surge of flagrant violations against them during and after detention by the Israeli authorities, including physical assault, and strip searches.

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Israeli Occupation Forces Demolish 3 Palestinian Stores In East Jerusalem

Israeli forces on Tuesday demolished three commercial stores belonging to a Palestinian in the Silwan neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem

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Hamas And Israel Holding Secret Talks (Even Though They Issued A Fatwa Against It Previously)

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Palestinian Movie Critical of Hamas Being Screened At Cannes Festival

A Palestinian movie sharply critical of Hamas is not commonplace, but the Cannes Festival actually features such a film that provides a stinging rebuke to Gaza’s current way of life – between Israeli military oppression and the wild and uncontrollable violence on its streets.

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Evidence Proves Israel Knew Settlements And Home Demolitions Were Illegal War Crimes. Enjoy The ICC

New evidence shows government’s adviser on international law said in 1968 that demolishing terror suspects’ homes violates Geneva Convention.

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Palestinian Woman Detained By Israeli Occupation While Visiting Jailed Brother

Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman while she was visiting her brother in Israel’s Megiddo prison Monday, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society told Ma’an.

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Pax Christi International Favors Recognition Of Palestine, Ban On Israeli Settlements

The World Assembly of Pax Christi urged all United Nations member states to recognize the state of Palestine and ban Israeli settlements’ construction in the occupied territories.

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Israel Occupation Arrests 11 Palestinians In West Bank

Israeli authorities Tuesday arrested at least 11 Palestinians during predawn and night raids in the West Bank districts of Hebron, Jenin and Bethlehem, according to local and security sources.

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Palestinian Movie Critical of Hamas Being Screened At Cannes Festival

Palestinian movie being screened at Cannes festival is sharply critical of Hamas, Palestinian society


A Palestinian movie sharply critical of Hamas is not commonplace, but the Cannes Festival actually features such a film that provides a stinging rebuke to Gaza’s current way of life – between Israeli military oppression and the wild and uncontrollable violence on its streets.

“Degrade” is the latest movie by twin brothers Ahmed and Mohammed Abu-Nasr, better known as film makers Terzan and Arab Nasser, and it was picked to be screened at the Cannes’ Critics Week, the festival’s sidebar dedicated to first and second films from up-and-coming artists. Judging by the presence at the first three screenings on Monday, the audience seems curious and pleased. And the Nasser brothers may be in line for some prizes.

Heading the Critics Week judges panel is Israeli actress Ronit Elkabetz, whose political views are well known, as is her feminist attitude – and that is exactly where the Nasser Brothers direct their surprising film.

This is a small film that takes place at one location – a Gaza beauty salon frequented by women of various ages and walks of life. This is a colorful sliver of paradise populated by a future bride, a cynical divorcee, a young pregnant woman, a religious woman veiled and covered from head to toe, as well as the owner of the establishment, who hails from Russia, a militant hairdresser and a bitter, older woman portrayed by Nazareth-born Palestinian actress Hiam Abbas.

Together they create a complex microcosm reflected in conversations about such issues as politics, religion and men, of course – unlike men, who deal with their disputes by letting off Kalachnikov rounds on the street. This gender-based difference is honed when the hairdresser’s lover, son of a local family, steals a lion from Gaza’s infamous zoo. This is a slap in the face of the Hamas leaders and they declare war on him and his family, which turns the street into a dangerous and especially very noisy place.

The Nasser Brothers say the film is based on a true story. “There was a very powerful family which owned the lion and the government attacked the family in order to take ownership,” Tarzen explained in an interview. When Hamas assumed power in 2006 they decided to take control of all the big families and looked for excuses to do so. On their way to achieving their goal, they killed 15 of the family members.”

All these events are experienced by the film’s characters and by us in the audience from inside the salon, where the women want to hang out until such time as calm is restored. But the violence goes on for hours, and with the sounds of shooting and explosions as a backdrop, the women share intimate experiences – almost contrived, talking about love affairs, their attitude toward life, a religious way of life versus a secular one, as well as Gaza’s deterioration. True, Israel is mentioned quite often in a negative fashion, but at the center of the debate is the Hamas rule and Palestinian society being torn apart under its auspices.

“Women in Gaza are like other women in the world, although their suffering is very unique,” the 26-year-old brothers said in media interviews. “We need women in order to bring about change in Gaza. They are our heroes because despite the ongoing war, they represent life. The movie shows battles outside the beauty salon, but inside they continue with their love stories. They want to remain beautiful, hoping for a date or marriage. While men are shooting at each other on the street, putting on lipstick becomes an act of protest: holding on to life no matter the circumstances, keeping hope alive.”


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Palestinian Woman Detained By Israeli Occupation While Visiting Jailed Brother

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman while she was visiting her brother in Israel’s Megiddo prison Monday, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society told Ma’an.

The society said that Maysaa Walid Mahajneh, 22, was visiting her brother Farid Mahajneh when she was detained by Israeli forces.Mahajneh is from al-Taybeh village in Jenin and is the mother of three girls.An Israeli prisons spokeswoman confirmed the arrest.She said that a Palestinian woman had been detained after a mobile phone was found in her bag, which police allege she was trying to “bring to her brother.”She could not confirm whether the woman was still being held, and an Israeli police spokesman said he was not aware of the arrest.There are approximately 6,000 Palestinians in Israeli prisoners, including more than 20 female Palestinians, according to prisoners’ rights group Addameer.

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Israeli Occupation Forces Detain 5 Women From Aqsa Compound

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained five women from the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Monday, witnesses said.The detainees were taken to the Chain Gate police station and afterwards transferred to al-Qishla police station in Jerusalem’s Old City for interrogation.The women were identified as Suha Eid, Salwa Ghazzawi, Ikram Ghazzawi, Suad Ubeidiyya and Iman Abu Isneineh.An Israeli police spokesman confirmed that two women had been arrested at the compound for “causing disturbances.”On Sunday, an Israeli court banned three women from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque for 45 days. The three women were identified as Alaa Taha, Sumayya Taha and Tasnim Ayyashi.The Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which sits just above the Western Wall plaza, houses both the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque.

The third holiest site in Islam, the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound is also venerated as Judaism’s most holy place as it sits where Jews believe the First and Second Temples once stood.
Following Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967, Israel has maintained an agreement with the Islamic endowment that controls the Al-Aqsa compound not to allow non-Muslim prayer in the area. Jewish prayer is allowed at the neighboring Western Wall.
Since mid-2014 Israeli authorities have regularly imposed restrictions on Muslims entering the compound, and on several occasions entire closed the compound, feeding tensions in East Jerusalem.

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Palestinian Mother To Serve 2 Years In Israeli Occupation Prison Following House Arrest

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — A Palestinian mother of six arrived at Israel’s Ramla jail on Wednesday to serve the remainder of her prison sentence, after spending 38 months under house arrest.

Head of prisoner rights NGO Jerusalem Prisoners Families Committee, Amjad Abu Asab, said that Alia al-Sheikh Abbasi, 50, was detained on Jan. 2, 2012 in the the Shufat refugee camp checkpoint on allegations of attempting to stab an Israeli soldier.

She was released on Feb. 22, 2012 and transferred to house arrest, where she spent 38 months.

Abbasi’s original sentence of 40 months in jail given by the Israeli central court of Jerusalem last year was reduced to 26 months of actual imprisonment after an appeal was presented to the Israeli High Court.

Alia Abbasi is a mother of six from the Silwan neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem, whose residents have Jerusalem residency cards but are not Israeli citizens, despite living under Israeli law.

Shuafat refugee camp, the location where Abbasi attempted to stab an Israeli soldier, is cut off from the rest of the city by the Israeli separation wall and a number of Jewish settlements, despite falling under city limits.

One of Abbasi’s children, Issa Daoud Abbasi, has been detained in Israeli jails since 2010, sentenced to 10 years of prison.

Asab pointed out that Abbasi’s prison sentence at Ramla jail brings the number of women prisoners from occupied East Jerusalem to four, out of the over twenty women currently held in Israeli jails.

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Headlines From Palestine: April 15, 2015

Israeli Occupation Navel Forces Open Fire At Gaza Fishermen

 Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Gaza City Wednesday morning.

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Black Friday

Internal Israeli probe of Occupation Forces invasion of Rafah,Gaza on ‘Black Friday’ declares response proportionate




Israeli Occupation Forces Demolish 4-Story Palestinian Residential Building In East Jerusalem

Israeli occupation forces Tuesday morning have flattened a residential building that’s under construction,  and consists of 4 stories in Wadi Al-Joz neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of having no building permit.

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Palestinian Employee Assaulted In Israeli Workplace

A Palestinian working in Israel was assaulted in his workplace during a dispute over a “broken mobile phone screen,” his father calling for Israeli accountability for mistreatment of Palestinian workers.

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Israeli Occupation Forces Detain 30 Palestinians from Nablus, Bethlehem Districts

Israeli forces detained early Wednesday 30 Palestinians from Nablus and Bethlehem districts, said security sources.

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Israeli Occupation Forces Detain Palestinian Mother Of Three From Her Home In Bethlehem

Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman early Wednesday from her home in the al-Doha village in Bethlehem, a prisoners’ rights group said.

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Israeli occupation demolished 3 Palestinian homes belonging to the Assaf family in Dahamash village, despite court’s order preventing it.

Israeli extremists smashed headstones in a Christian cemetery in the village of Bar’am in Galilee area.


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Israeli Occupation Forces Detain Palestinian Mother Of Three From Her Home In Bethlehem

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman early Wednesday from her home in the al-Doha village in Bethlehem, a prisoners’ rights group said.

The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society told Ma’an Israeli forces detained Nisreen Mustafa Muhammad Hmeida, 31 years of age and mother of three, after searching her home.

An Israeli army spokeswoman did not have immediate information but told Ma’an she would look into the incident.

As of April 1, 23 Palestinian women were being held in Israeli jails, according to PPS.

Female detainees include lawmaker and PFLP member Khalida Jarrar.

Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association Addameer reported in 2014 that female prisoners are subjected to the same psychological and physical abuse as male counterparts under Israeli detention, and have reported beatings, insults, threats and sexual harassment.

Female prisoners are also routinely humiliated by intrusive body searches, which often occur before and after court hearings, and during the night as punitive measures.

Israeli forces detained 112 Palestinian women and girls in 2014, marking a 70 percent increase from 2013.

Israeli forces routinely detain both Palestinian men and women throughout the West Bank, often on the pretext of perceived security threat, and Addameer estimates that 40 percent of the Palestinian male population has been arrested at some point.

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Female Palestinian Lawmaker Sentenced to Six Months in Israeli Occupation Prison

RAMALLAH, April 5, 2015 (WAFA) – An Israeli court has sentenced member of the Palestinian Legislative Council Khalida Jarrar, of the People’s Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), to a six-month administrative detention, Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association.

The final order will be confirmed on April 8, said Mahmoud Hassan, lawyer with Addameer and director of its Legal Unit,

Jarrar was arrested on April 2 when an Israeli army force, comprising of about 60 soldiers and intelligence officers, stormed and ransacked her home in Ramallah at midnight.

Local media reported that forces surrounded Jarrar’s home in Ramallah neighborhood of al-Irsal broke into her family home. Soldiers confiscated two computers and a mobile phone.

Jarrar’s daughter, Yaffa, was quoted as saying that her mother was detained because she is a leader of a ‘terrorist organization’ that has been ‘encouraging terror activities’ over the past few weeks.

As Yaffa reported, Jarrar refused to speak or eat at all while she was held at Ofer under interrogation before being transferred to HaSharon prison.

The Palestine Liberation Organization denounced the move and called Jarrar’s detention as “illegal”. Last year, the military confined Jarrar’s movement to the city of Jericho and its surroundings for about two weeks.

Jarrar is the former Executive Director of Addameer and Vice President of its Board of Directors, as well as the chair of the Palestinian Legislative Council Prisoners’ Committee and a member of the Palestinian national follow-up committee for the International Criminal Court.

Since the beginning of March 2015, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club (PPC) reported that the Israeli authorities have issued administrative detention orders against 42 Palestinian prisoners. By the end of March, over 121 Palestinians were sentenced between three – Six months in prison under administrative detention.

Administrative detention is the imprisonment of Palestinians without charge or trial and on the basis of secret evidence for up to six month periods, indefinitely renewable by Israeli military courts.

The use of administrative detention dates from the “emergency laws” of the British colonial era in Palestine, said the Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.

It stated, “Israel’s use of administrative detention violates international law; such detention is allowed only in individual circumstances that are exceptionally compelling for “imperative reasons of security.”

Israel uses administrative detention routinely as a form of collective punishment and mass detention of Palestinians, and frequently uses administrative detention when it fails to obtain confessions in interrogations of Palestinian detainees.

According to the international law, administrative detention can be used only in the most exceptional cases, as the last means available to preventing danger that cannot be thwarted by less harmful means. Yet Israel uses this form of collective punishment systematically.

There are around 500 detainees serving administrative detention in several Israeli jails. Jarrar is not the only lawmaker to be imprisoned; 18 of the Palestinian Legislative Council members are currently held in Israeli detention without charge or trial.

Palestinian detainees have continuously resorted to open-ended hunger strikes as a way to protest their illegal administrative detention and to demand an end to this policy which violates international law.


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

Silwan, Jerusalem (SILWANIC)

The occupation authorities arrested on Monday the wife of a Jerusalemite prisoner who is detained at Eshel prison in Beer Sheva.
Amjad Abu Asab, head of Jerusalemites detainees and prisoners families committee, explained that the occupation authorities arrested the wife of ne Jerusalemite prisoner as she was visiting her husband in Eshel prison.
Abu Asab explained that the lady was arrested when she was with her 2-year old daughter and she was transferred to Beer Sheva police center where they police extended her arrest for 24 hours.
Abu Asab added that the police allowed the family to take the daughter.