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The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil,    but because of the people who don't do anything about it    
Life under occupation

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The fatal four and a half minutes Amit Gilutz - B’Tselem - The time lapse between when a Palestinian car hit Israeli troops and the fatal shooting of two of the car’s passengers is what raises concern. Footage of the incident – which took place about two weeks ago near the village of Kafr Ni’ma and was streamed on Facebook Live - demonstrates that 4.5 minutes elapsed from the time the car hit the Israeli troops and the time the bulk of the gunfire at the car’s passengers began. [ak] 26/3/2019
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Trump’s Stance on the Golan will allow Israel to Operate with Impunity ElsewhereJonathan Cook - Dissident Voice - When President Donald Trump moved the US embassy to occupied Jerusalem last year, effectively sabotaging any hope of establishing a viable Palestinian state, he tore up the international rulebook. Last week, he trampled all over its remaining tattered pages. He did so, of course, via Twitter. Referring to a large piece of territory Israel seized from Syria in 1967, Mr Trump wrote: “After 52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability.” Israel expelled 130,000 Syrians from the Golan Heights in 1967, under cover of the Six Day War, and then annexed the territory 14 years later – in violation of international law. A small population of Syrian Druze are the only survivors of that ethnic cleansing operation.-rh26/3/2019
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Trump recognizes Golan Heights as Israeli territory; Pence says support for Israel combats anti-SemitisAllison Deger - Mondoweiss - Territory gained during acts of war, even defensive war, are strictly prohibited by international law. The UN Security Council voted in 1967 for Israel to return the Golan Heights. Israel officially annexed the lands by legislation in 1981. No other country has recognized Israeli control over the Golan Heigts. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke alongside the president, stating Israel had “liberated the Golan” from Syria during two military campaigns, in 1967 and in 1973. Netanyahu said he personally fought in Syria for the Israeli Defense Forces after the 1973 war.-rh26/3/2019
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Israeli Military Continues Bombarding Gaza Despite Egyptian Attempts to Negotiate CeasefireIMEMCnews - Israeli forces continued to pound Gaza with bombs late Monday night and into Tuesday morning, including the office of Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyya in Gaza City. After the Israeli military began its bombardment campaign, dropping close to 100 bombs in the first three hours of Monday evening, Palestinian resistance forces retaliated, firing around 30 homemade shells across the border into Israel, causing no injuries. Israeli authorities opened public bomb shelters for Israelis living in border towns near the Gaza Strip. Palestinians living in Gaza, numbering nearly two million people, have no bomb shelters.-rh26/3/2019
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In video - Gaza rocket hits central Israel, injures sevenMa`an News - The Israeli army confirmed that the rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip and that the rocket hit an Israeli home, causing a fire to erupt and destroying the house. Sources said that seven Israelis, including women and children, were injured. Their injuries were described as minor and moderate.-rh 26/3/2019
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Israeli soldiers forcibly seize 9-year-old Yazan Idris at his elementary school, HebronB`Tselem - On 19 March 2019, at around 12:30 P.M., after school had let out, Yazan Idris (9) and his brother Tayyem (7) came running back to Ziyad Jaber Elementary School, Hebron. They reached the door to the principal’s office and stood there crying. Seconds later, a military officer and a soldier ran into the school and reached the principal’s office, saying they had come to arrest the boys for allegedly throwing stones. The officer grabbed Yazan by the hand; a teacher took Tayyem into the principal’s office and shut the door to keep the child safe. The officer responded by threatening to arrest the teachers if they kept him from taking the boys. The officer opened the door and an argument ensued between the teachers and the soldiers, four more of whom had arrived as reinforcements, with the teachers trying to extricate Yazan. The soldiers would not relent, and ultimately took him from the school by force, pushing the teachers away. After leaving the school grounds, the soldiers threw a stun grenade in the street. They then took Yazan Idris to the Worshipers’ Road Checkpoint, which the military had installed about ten meters away from the school. After an hour or so of verbal arguments with the school staff who followed them there, and with Yazan’s mother who came to the checkpoint, Yazan was let go.-rh26/3/2019
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Gaza under 66 Israeli airstrikes within 12 hours, rendering dozens of civilians homelessPCHR (Palestinian Center for Human Rights, Gaza) - For 12 hours, two million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip lived in a state of terror and fear due to the continuous Israeli airstrikes that targeted various locations, some in densely-populated areas. Several residential buildings and civil facilities were hit, Israeli spokespersons asserting that there were security service offices underneath or near them - with the result that dozens of civilians were forced to escape their homes into the cold winter night. 13 families, comprising 70 members, including 44 children and 14 women, were rendered suddenly homeless - a vastly disproportionate retaliation for the rockets which, according to the Israeli media, hit north of Tel Aviv and wounded seven Israelis. [ak] 26/3/2019
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Is Trump`s `Deal of the Century` Just the Biggest Bribe in History?David Rosenberg - Axis of Logic - After two years of waiting for Trump’s Deal of the Century, it now appears that what the U.S. president and Jared Kushner have in mind is more like the Bribe of the Century. As The New York Times reported on Wednesday, the heart of the plan is showering tens of billions on economic aid on the Palestinians, as well as on Egypt, Jordan and possibly even Lebanon. How many billions we’ll only know after Israel’s elections, when the plan is unveiled, but the Times quotes sources as saying Palestinians alone will get $25 billion and the others as much as $40 billion. On the rise of a future Palestinian state, Kushner remained vague. In an interview with Sky News on Wednesday, he declined to relate to that issue directly but implied that things like national borders were a frippery.-rh26/3/2019
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Soldiers Assault Detainees, Keep Them Cuffed In The Cold, In Negev Detention CampIMEMC News - "The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported that the soldiers used live rounds, in addition to gas bombs and concussion grenades to attack the detainees, protesting the dangerously escalating violations against them" [ry] 25/3/2019
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2 Palestinian prisoners enter 34th year of Israeli imprisonmentMa’an News Agency - "Two Palestinian prisoners entered their 34th year of Israeli imprisonment, on Sunday, and are among 26 prisoners who were supposed to be released after the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993" [ry] 25/3/2019
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Golan Druze reject Trump backing of Israeli sovereigntyReuters, Ynet reporters - Residents of 4 Druze towns protested President Trump’s announcement, insisting that the Golan Heights belong to Syria; Israelis see move as just stating the obvious as area too strategic to relinquish [ry] 25/3/2019
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An angel for Razan’s motherJennifer Bing - The Electronic Intifada - "Ahmed talks about Razan when he speaks to audiences in the US. He often refers to her as an angel. “I want to give this angel to Ahmed to take back to Gaza to give to Razan’s mother. Just so she knows that people in the US have heard her daughter’s story,” I said." - id21/3/2019
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Gantz vows to resume targeted killings of Hamas leaders ‘if necessary’TOI STAFF - The Times of Israel - Blue and White leader Benny Gantz said Wednesday he would consider reintroducing the policy of assassinating Hamas leaders in the Gaza Strip if his centrist party forms the next Israeli government. In a campaign speech, Gantz criticized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his handling of the recent uptick in violence in and around the Palestinian enclave. “In the 3.5 years after [Operation] Protective Edge there was complete calm. No rockets, balloons or kites,” Gantz said, referring to the Gaza war he commanded as chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces in 2014.-rh 19/3/2019
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Israel demolishes school building in Shufat refugee campMa`an - Muhammad Alqam, owner of the school building, told Ma’an that the Israeli authorities had issued a demolition order against the building last November, pointing out that he had headed to the Israeli Jerusalem Municipality before the construction of the building to issue necessary permits, however, he was told that the area belongs to the United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA.) Principal of the school, Saleh Alqam, pointed out that the demolition was carried out without a prior notice. [bz]19/3/2019
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`Endless Trip to Hell`: Israel Jails Hundreds of Palestinian Boys a Year. These Are Their Testimonies They’re seized in the dead of night, blindfolded and cuffed, abused and manipulated to confess to crimes they didn`t commit. Every year Israel arrests alNetta Ahituv - Haaretz - It was a gloomy, typically chilly late- February afternoon in the West Bank village of Beit Ummar, between Bethlehem and Hebron. The weather didn’t deter the children of the Abu-Ayyash family from playing and frolicking outside. One of them, in a Spiderman costume, acted the part by jumping lithely from place to place. Suddenly they noticed a group of Israeli soldiers trudging along the dirt trail across the way. Instantly their expressions turned from joy to dread, and they rushed into the house. It’s not the first time they reacted like that, says their father. In fact, it’s become a pattern ever since 10-year-old Omar was arrested by troops this past December.-rh19/3/2019
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High Court bans racist from running for Knesset, while Israeli politics remain racist to the coreJonathan Ofir - Mondoweiss - Michael Ben Ari, the leader of Jewish Power, is now banned from running. He would have been 5th on the slate of the Union of Right-wing Parties. The ruling means that 2nd on the Jewish Power list, Itamar Ben Gvir, who has not been barred, will move up from 8th place to 7th. Ben Gvir is renowned for his adoration of Baruch Goldstein who perpetrated the Al-Ibrahimi mosque massacre in 1994, killing 29 – Ben Gvir has a poster of Goldstein in his living-room. And this leads us to the question, of whether this barring of Ben Ari is really meaningful, or whether it is cosmetic? Ben Ari is being barred for his racism – but what about the racism of the whole merged party which he would have been part of?-rh19/3/2019
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Interview with Khalida Jarrar, released from Israeli prison after 20 months without chargeMichele Giorgio - Il Manifesto - Khalida Jarrar is one of the leaders in the West Bank of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a party with a Marxist orientation and the main force on the Palestinian left. Just a few days ago, she was released from 20 months’ imprisonment without charge or trial in Israel. In a central neighborhood of ​​Ramallah, Ghassan, her husband, opens the door for us.-rh19/3/2019
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The Truth Is Out About Israel’s Lethal Actions In Gaza. Will The World Listen?Saeb Erekat - Information Clearing House - A UN investigation into the 2018 Gaza protests has concluded that Israeli officers and their leaders may have committed war crimes or crimes against humanity. The human rights council’s commission of inquiry found that soldiers intentionally used live ammunition against civilians, who included children, women, journalists, health workers and people with disabilities. The figures are telling: more than 6,000 people injured by Israeli bullets, with 183 killed. Renowned human rights organisations such as Human Rights Watch, B’Tselem and Al-Haq had already denounced this policy, with B’Tselem calling on Israeli soldiers not to follow orders to shoot civilians. The people of Palestine still wonder whether such findings will be used by the international community to implement policy aimed at ending the Israeli occupation, or whether it will be business as usual.-rh19/3/2019
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Palestinians will suffer the impacts of climate change more severely than Israelis due to the occupationZena Agha - Mondoweiss - The single greatest non-environmental risk facing Palestinians in the West Bank remains the ongoing Israeli occupation, an occupation so pervasive that the United Nations Development Program considers it an environmental “risk” in its own right. Now in its 52nd year, the occupation prevents Palestinians from accessing and managing their land and resources, particularly water. Significantly, it prevents them from pursuing measures to support climate change adaptation, which is the adjustment of human or natural systems in response to the effects of climate change. In the West Bank, the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) inability to pursue adaptation policies is a direct consequence of the occupation and will have acute human and environmental repercussions for Palestinian inhabitants.-rh19/3/2019
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US calls Golan ‘Israeli-controlled,’ drops all mention of West Bank ‘occupation’ERIC CORTELLESSA - The Times of Israel - For the first time, the Trump administration referred to the Golan Heights on Wednesday as “Israeli-controlled” and ceased to refer to the West Bank as “occupied” in the State Department’s annual report on human rights around the world. While last year’s report marked a departure from years of American foreign policy by no longer calling the West Bank, Gaza, and the Golan Heights “occupied” in the section title, this year’s report went two small steps further.-rh 19/3/2019
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J Street launches Birthright-style trip to Israel that will include PalestiniansCATHRYN J. PRINCE - The Times of Israel - Come July, 40 American college students will participate on a 10-day trip courtesy of the progressive group. Billed as an alternative to Birthright, the trip, which will be funded by J Street donors, is part of its “Let Our People Know” campaign. Group leaders hope the trip will give American Jewish youth a more complete and nuanced picture of life in Israel. “We hope this trip will provide a model for the kind of Israel education young Jews want and need — one that engages fully with Israel’s reality, including perspectives from Palestinians living under its 52-year military occupation,” said Eva Borgwardt, president of the J Street U National Board and Stanford University senior.-rh19/3/2019
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March 17, 2019 Al-Hadidiya, Halat Makhul, Umm Zuqa.David Shulman, Margaret Olin - Touching Photographs - I say to Yusuf, both of us staring downhill through the grasses and flowers toward the distant blue hills, “If there were no soldiers here and no settlers, we’d be in Paradise.” It sounds a bit weird in Arabic. He turns the sentence over in his mind before he agrees. He was born into the world of the Occupation, he has never known any other world.-rh 19/3/2019
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Israeli court rules against demolition of Bethlehem schoolMa`an News Agency - " An Israeli court rejected an appeal by Israeli settlement organization "Regavim" to demolish of a Palestinian school in the southern West Bank district of Bethlehem, upon efforts by Palestinian activists from the Anti Wall and Settlement Committee in Bethlehem." ca16/3/2019
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The truth is out about Israel’s lethal actions in Gaza. Will the worldlisten?Saeb Erekat - Information Clearing House "The UN’s damning verdict on the2018 Gaza protests should prompt the international community into ending Israeli occupation." ca16/3/2019
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Israeli soldiers kill Palestinian delivering legal documents at Rajabi HouseAl-Khalil team - International Solidarity Movement - "The army further prevented Palestinian Red Crescent Society’s medics from entering the scene to treat Shweiki. Human rights workers were attacked by Israeli Police and arrested immediately after arriving on the scene." - id14/3/2019
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Netanyahu Now Endorses Jewish Fascism. U.S. Jews, Cut Your Ties With Him NowEtan Nechin - Information Clearing House - Netanyahu has been working hard in the last few weeks to help create a coalition between Jewish Home, the latest incarnation of the Mafdal, a venerable religious Zionist party, and a party called Otzma Yehudit, which could be called the Jewish National Front, a radical far right party whose members, like its former leader, Baruch Marzel, were followers of Meir Kahane’s Kach Party. Baruch Goldstein, who massacred 24 Palestinians at prayer in Hebron in 1994, was a Kach member at that time.-rh12/3/2019
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What’s COGAT’s excuse this time?Gisha-Gaza Gateway - An olive oil producer from the Gaza Strip wants to sell his olive oil in the West Bank. It probably sounds like a pretty straightforward request, but all goods entering the West Bank require Israel’s approval and Israel rejected the olive oil producer’s request. Why? (...) The feigned innocence in COGAT’s reply is especially aggravating given that its own social media is plastered with posts, proudly announcing its role in facilitating economic activity in the Palestinian territory [bz]12/3/2019
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Defending nation-state law, PM says Israeli Arabs have 22 other countriesRAOUL WOOTLIFF - The Times of Israel - The claim that there are 22 other Arab states is often used by right-wing Israelis as an argument against Palestinian statehood, but is not generally used as an argument regarding the country’s Arab citizens, who make up almost a quarter of the population.-rh12/3/2019
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How the Israeli Army Takes Palestinian Land and Hands It to SettlersAmira Hass - Haaretz - Dror Etkes, a researcher of Israel’s settlement policy, wants, as usual, to put things in order. In a new study he will be publishing this week, he focuses on the history of orders to seize Palestinian land, issued by generations of army commanders in the West Bank (not including the part that was annexed to Jerusalem). More than 1,150 seizure orders have been issued from 1969 to the present. After subtracting those that were revoked or that overlap, it turns out that this particular trick enabled Israel to take over more than 100,000 dunams (25,000 acres) of Palestinian land. More millions of dunams of Palestinian land have been stolen in other ways, which Etkes has been researching too.-rh12/3/2019
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Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusionBen White - The Independent - Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was back in the headlines on Sunday, after declaring on social media that “Israel is not a state of all its citizens”. The Likud leader later doubled down, telling his cabinet that Israel is “the nation state not of all its citizens, but only of the Jewish people”. Netanyahu’s comments are the latest grim episode in an election season that will see Israelis going to the polls on 9 April. Just last month, the prime minister helped engineer an election merger that could see far-right party Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) enter the Knesset.-rh12/3/2019
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The UN fails to name and shame firms aiding Israel’s illegal settlementsJonathan Cook - Countercurrents - The United Nations postponed last week for the third time the publication of a blacklist of Israeli and international firms that profit directly from Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied territories. The international body had come under enormous pressure to keep the database under wraps after lobbying behind the scenes from Israel, the United States and many of the 200-plus companies that were about to be named. UN officials have suggested they may go public with the list in a few months.-rh12/3/2019
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Gaza aid cannot wait while Israel holds elections Shlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - As it usually does, Hamas decided to fix its mistake by heating things up with Israel. The group went back to launching incendiary balloons and escalated violent demonstrations on the border fence. The number of Palestinian casualties has climbed after weeks of Egypt urging it to avoid escalation and wait until after Israel’s April 9 elections to complete the long-term cease-fire deal that has been months in the making. However, growing shortages have increased pressure on the Hamas leadership. How can one ask thousands of civil servants to wait for their pay until after Israel deals with its domestic political affairs?-rh 12/3/2019
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Israeli forces detain 4 shepherds, 2 activists in Jordan ValleyMa’an News Agency - "The two activists were with the shepherds when Israeli settlers chased them out of the fields where they were herding their sheep; Israeli forces then arrived the detained all four shepherds and two activists" [ry] 11/3/2019
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Israeli forces injure Palestinians in clashes near RamallahMa`an News Agency - "A number of Palestinians were shot and injured, while dozens suffered from tear-gas suffocation, on Friday morning, during violent clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinian youths in the Beit Sira village, west of the central occupied West Bank district of Ramallah.Locals told Ma`an that violent clashes broke out after Israeli forces raided the home of Youssef Raed Mahmoud Anqawi, 20, who was shot and killed after a vehicle he was riding in, slipped on the wet road, hitting the soldiers’ military vehicle." ca9/3/2019
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Water Supply Cut for 2,600 Palestinians in Jordan ValleyIMEMC - "Bisharat called upon international and humanitarian institutions to immediately intervene, to stop Israeli violations of human rights. The Jordan Valley forms a third of the occupied West Bank, with 88 percent of its land classified as Area C — under full Israeli military control." - id7/3/2019
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In photos - Israeli settlers seize Palestinian home in East JerusalemMa`an - Israeli settlers raided the al-Halabi family home, where an elderly Palestinian couple lives and who were out shopping for groceries at the time; the couple was thrown out by settlers upon arrival. Palestinian youths attempted to defend the home from seizure, however, Israeli police forces assaulted them and fired tear-gas bombs towards them. [bz]5/3/2019
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No Justification for Israel to Shoot Protesters with Live Ammunition: ReportUnited Nations Human Rights Council - Information Clearing House - The Commission investigated every killing at the designated demonstration sites by the Gaza separation fence on official protest days. The investigation covered the period from the start of the protests until 31 December 2018. 189 Palestinians were killed during the demonstrations inside this period. The Commission found that Israeli Security Forces killed 183 of these protesters with live ammunition. Thirty-five of these fatalities were children, while three were clearly marked paramedics, and two were clearly marked journalists. According to the Commission’s data analysis, the Israeli Security Forces injured 6,106 Palestinians with live ammunition at the protest sites during this period. Another 3,098 Palestinians were injured by bullet fragmentation, rubber-coated metal bullets or by hits from tear gas canisters. Four Israeli soldiers were injured at the demonstrations. Four Israeli soldiers were injured at the demonstrations. One Israeli soldier was killed on a protest day but outside the protest sites.-rh5/3/2019
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`Change doesn’t come from the courthouses alone`Henriette Chacar - +972 - Addameer director Sahar Francis talks about the pervasiveness of incarceration in Palestinian society, how she and her organization have been targeted by Israeli forces for their work, and what it means if the international community can’t hold Israel accountable for the occupation.-rh5/3/2019
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Can we imagine a just peace for Palestine?Richard Falk - Mondoweiss - In such a binational (one state, two nations) situation, the newly created single state could offer national homelands to Jews and Palestinians, while finding a name for the new state that is congenial to both peoples. Maybe this will never happen, but it is the most just and sustainable vision of a peaceful future that responds to decades of diplomatic failure, massive Palestinian suffering and abuse. Above all, such a solution recognizes that is people that possess the moral authority and fulfill political promise of national resistance and global solidarity. Such an understanding would be tantamount to a legislative victory by that still unacknowledged, yet powerful, Parliament of Humanity.-rh5/3/2019
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Top prosecutor rejects Netanyahu’s claim graft charges are politically motivatedTOI STAFF - The Times of Israel - Following Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s announcement Thursday that he would charge the prime minister with fraud and breach of trust in three cases, and with bribery in one case, pending a hearing, Netanyahu alleged that Nitzan and senior prosecutor Liat Ben-Ari pushed for his indictment out of political motives. “There is no basis for these claims,” Nitzan said at a conference in Haifa.-rh5/3/2019
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Palestinians, Jordanians challenge Israel at Al-Aqsa over banned prayer space Daoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Al-Aqsa Mosque is again causing a major rift in the once friendly relationship between Jordan and Israel. Relations turned sour in the past week when Israeli security officials conducted a humiliating arrest of Jordan’s most senior official in Jerusalem. Heavily armed Israeli security forces arrived at the East Jerusalem home of Sheikh Abdul Azim Salhab at 5:30 a.m. on Feb. 24. Salhab’s deputy and a score of other employees of the Jordanian Ministry of Awqaf were also taken away, as were leading Palestinian activists. The Israeli police said the arrests were made because Salhab, 75, and hundreds of Muslims broke an Israeli imposed ban forbidding Palestinians from entering or praying at the Bab al-Rahmeh prayer room in the mosque. They called the protest act a “change in the status quo.”-rh 5/3/2019
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OCHA: Israel destroyed water connections denying thousands drinking waterOCHA - "The Israeli authorities destroyed in the last two weeks of February parts of three water connections in the occupied West Bank, two of them were funded by international donors and provided as humanitarian assistance, that supplied or intended to supply tens of thousands of Palestinians with drinking water, according the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territory...All the demolitions were on grounds of the lack of Israeli-issued building permits, which is impossible to get, particularly in Area C." ca2/3/2019
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Israel stops parents joining seriously ill children during treatment Sarah Algherbawi - The Electronic Intifada - "Ola was soon informed that she may not accompany her daughter through Erez, the military checkpoint separating Gaza and Israel. Mais would have to travel without her parents for treatment.The family then had to give the Israeli military various names, requesting that someone on the list should accompany Mais. Israel rejected most of the suggestions, before deciding that Balqis al-Waheidi, a 72-year-old distant relative with diabetes and rheumatism, may travel with the child."28/2/2019
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Israel trying to deport stateless Palestinian journalist from JerusalemOren Ziv - +972 - "Mustafa al-Haruf has spent the last 20 years living in East Jerusalem, where he has a wife, daughter, and works as a photographer. Now Israel wants to deport him to Jordan, where he has no family or legal status." - id 28/2/2019
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Doomed is the house which settlers set their eyes uponAmos Gvirtz - Don`t Say We Didn`t Know - Settlers trying to force Abu Imad Eknaibi and his family to leave their home in Tel Rumeida, Hebron, threatening that they will slaughter his children if he doesn`t. [bz]26/2/2019
“We were unable to locate the perpetrator”: The failure of Israel’s law enforcement system to investigate and prosecute military and police personnel who committed criminal offenses against Palestinians in the West BankYesh Din - Israeli law enforcement responses to offenses perpetrated against Palestinians by Israeli military and police personnel are deeply flawed. Some of the issues are individual, while others are systemic and fundamental. Yesh Din has documented incidents of harm perpetrated by Israeli security forces against Palestinians and their property in the OPT for over a decade. Every year, Yesh Din publishes detailed data and a thorough analysis regarding the failure of Israel’s law enforcement establishment to investigate and prosecute members of the security forces suspected of offenses against Palestinians.This information sheet focuses on one pattern of the plethora of issues flagged over the years in Yesh Din’s publications. It presents five examples of investigations in which the Military Police Criminal Investigation Division (MPCID) or the Department of Police Investigations (DPI) had reasonable grounds to believe members of Israeli security forces had committed a criminal offense, and yet the investigation files were closed because the investigators failed, or were not compelled, to find the perpetrators.-rh 26/2/2019
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QalandiyaTamar Fleishman - Machsom Watch - Slowly and warily those who were released from hospital that morning emerged from the checkpoint compound, most of them women, and continued towards the transport platform from where their designated vehicle would drive them home to Gaza. Last was a woman, pale, dragging her feet. A few days ago she underwent surgery in a Nablus hospital, replacing her knee, and she yet to recover. The doctors had recommended/ordered total rest for ten days, but the instructions of the Occupation’s experts take precedence over medical ones. The woman reached the van leaning on her walker and could not tackle the two steps in the front of the vehicle, letting three men take her very gently up and inside. Like others, she also came there at 9 a.m., and like others, all very unhealthy, waited for six hours to get going. Until a few months ago, the DCO had a wheelchair for sparing cases like hers extra suffering. No longer.-rh26/2/2019
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Israel releases two Palestinian teens to house arrestMa`an - Abed and Muhammad, both 14-year old, were detained on late Friday from in front of their homes in the Silwan neighborhood, in occupied East Jerusalem. The two teens were released on Saturday, to house arrest for one week and fines of 5,000 shekels ($1,385) each. Such payments cause financial hardships on the families, and prison time is extended if the fines are not paid... [bz]26/2/2019
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Hebron massacre: Palestinians mark anniversary of settler attackHarry Fawcett - Al Jazeera - Palestinians at the West Bank are commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Ibrahimi Mosque massacre in Hebron [ry] 25/2/2019
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What Netanyahu actually said on Poles’ collaboration with NazisTAMAR SHARON and RAPHAEL AHREN - The Times of Israel - A brief diplomatic crisis between Israel and Poland has served as a sharp reminder of the power that a single word — even if that word is simply “the” — can sometimes carry in international relations. Top Polish politicians were thrown into a frenzy Thursday after reports emerged that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in Warsaw for an international conference on the Middle East, had said that “the Poles cooperated with the Nazis” during the Holocaust.-rh19/2/2019
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Will Israeli Jews support Arab Knesset candidate? Shlomi Eldar - Al- Monitor - Will Knesset member Ahmad Tibi, chairman of Taal, succeed in breaking the longstanding taboo of “anyone but Arabs in the coalition”? While it is still too early to tell, the possibility is already keeping Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu awake at night. On the evening of the 2015 elections, Netanyahu had warned, “Arab voters are heading to the polling stations in droves,” managing to drum up more votes for himself. On Feb. 9, he posted a video on his Facebook page attacking Benny Gantz, head of Israel Resilience, and insinuating that Arab votes are illegitimate. The target of his intimidation campaign was Tibi: “You vote for Gantz; you get Tibi,” is the title of the clip, which claims, among other things, “The Oslo Accords passed because of the Arabs’ votes. … Former Chief of Staff Gantz will do it again.-rh 19/2/2019
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Why residents of Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah face eviction Ahmad Melhem -Al-Monitor - The Execution Office, which is the competent authority to implement court decisions, notified Jan. 3 five families of the Sabbagh family that they had until Jan. 23 to vacate their homes. The family’s lawyer, Husni Abu Hussein, however, managed Jan. 14 to obtain a freeze order until Feb. 16, since the Central Court and Supreme Court have yet to rule on the land ownership in the neighborhood. The case goes back to 2012 when the family’s lawyers resorted to the Israeli Central Court to file a lawsuit against Nahalat Shimon, an organization that represents settlers, claiming that the neighborhood’s lands, including the houses of the Sabbagh families, belong to settlers.-rh 19/2/2019
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The Palestinian activists protecting Hebron from settler violenceSteven Davidson - +972 - A group of Palestinian volunteers is trying to fill the monitoring gap left behind by the recent departures of the two international observer organizations. The new group, Kifah, or “struggle,” is the brainchild of Tel Rumeida community leader Issa Amro. This week, Palestinian volunteers in blue vests, identifying themselves as “human rights observers" made their way toward the Israeli army’s Checkpoint 56 on Shuhada Street in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron early last week. They were escorting children on their way to the Qurtuba school 100 meters away, enduring harassment and kicking by settlers as they let the schoolchildren pass. [bz]19/2/2019
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`Israel’s heist of Palestinian revenues is illegal economic aggression; Palestine will not submit to political and financial extortion`Dr. Hanan Ashrawi - PLO Executive Committee - The Israeli government once again committed an act of piracy, illegally withholding Palestinian tax revenues as a form of shameless political extortion. The Israeli government is taking this malicious measure against the Palestinian leadership, and by extension against hundreds of thousands of families, to score cheap political points in a nasty election season. Israeli politics are characterized by e racism and hatred, and candidates compete who will exhibit the worst cruelty against Palestinians. Leading up to this heist, Israel has led a venomous incitement campaign, demonizing and dehumanizing thousands of Palestinian political prisoners who are illegally held inside Israel. Today, Israel is punishing the Palestinian government for exercising its responsibilities to provide social assistance to thousands of families permanently scarred by its illegal policy of mass incarceration and unchecked violence against Palestinians. Palestine will not submit to political and financial extortion and will continue to seek accountability for Israeli crimes. [ak] 19/2/2019
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Can a Light Rail Train Link a Divided City?KESHIA NAURANA BADALGE - City Lab - If there’s a neutral zone for the residents of Jerusalem, it’s on rails. In a city where real estate is highly contested, where walls divide neighborhoods based on faith, and the clothes you wear are code for where you should be seen, the city’s modern light rail system––whether by virtue of peace or necessity–– glides above the divide. That’s why a team of Palestinians and Israelis from Mekudeshet, an arts and cultural initiative, are using the city’s public transit as a platform for documentary and observation. Every summer, the group stages a program of original light-rail-based tours called Dissolving Boundaries—“docu-theatrical journeys” designed to distance you a little from your personal paradigms.-rh19/2/2019
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Israel trims funds to Palestinians over militant stipendsMEMO - "Israel will cut around 5 per cent of the tax handovers to the Palestinian Authority over its financial support for jailed Palestinian militants, the Israeli security cabinet said on Sunday, following similar US legislation last year, Reuters reports" [ry] 18/2/2019
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Released prisoner embraced by strangers in GazaOla Mousa - The Electronic Intifada - "“I was thinking of my pregnant wife, my son Yasser who is now 17 years old, and the future of my sons if they were harmed. However, I was steadfast when I remembered our right to defend our land and dignity,” Ahmed said." - id 17/2/2019
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On 47th Friday of Great March of Return and Breaking Siege, Israeli Forces Wound 67 Civilians, including 14 Children, 2 Women, 2 Paramedics, and JournalistIMEMC - "According to observations by PCHR’s fieldworkers, the Israeli forces who stationed in prone positions and in military jeeps along the fence with Israel continued to use excessive force against the demonstrators by opening fire and firing teargas canisters at them. As a result, dozens of the demonstrators were hit with bullets and teargas canisters without posing any imminent threat or danger to the life of soldiers." - id 17/2/2019
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Israeli forces raze Palestinian agricultural lands in UrifMa`an News Agency - "Israeli forces razed and leveled lands in the Urif village, in the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus, on Friday morning. Israeli forces also sealed a road with dirt mounds to prevent villagers from reaching their agricultural lands.Ghassan Daghlas, an official who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that Israeli forces and settlers are attempting to “impose a reality” on Palestinian lands classified as Area B by razing and leveling large area of lands and preventing farmers from reaching their lands by placing dirt mounds to block the road." ca16/2/2019
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Chef`s detention prevents a vital operation and endangers his life Rasha Hirzallah - WAFA/IMEMC - On 9 December, 2017, Laith Kanaan Barghouti was hit by a tear gas grenade fired by Israeli soldiers during clashes at the northern entrance of Ramallah. Not only did he lose the use of his right eye, but the tear gas grenade has opened a large cavity between the eye and the nose in a way that tears would flow into his nose and into his breathing system - which might cause suffocation, particularly when he is asleep. After an intensive search he found a surgeon able to perform the delicate operation needed - Dr. Ghassan Abu Sitta, a Palestinian resident in the Lebanese capital Beirut. Dr. Abu Sitta was due to visit Palestine as part of a medical delegation, and agreed to operate Barghouti on January 19 at the Istishari Hospital in Ramallah. On the previous evening Barghouti was preparing a bag of the things he would need in hospital - when Israeli soldiers suddenly arrived at his home and took him off to interrogation on unspecified charges. The family pleadings were of no avail. The operation did not take place and Dr. Abu Sitta had to depart at the end of his visa. Instead of proceeding towards implementing his dream - to start a business of his own, a mobile restaurant - his family worries that Barghouti`s untreated injury might end with his suffocating to death in his prison cell. [ak] 12/2/2019
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Israeli court `enables, validates` Palestinian home demolitionsAljazeera - Israel`s top court enables and validates the disposition of Palestinians and the demolition of their homes in the occupied West Bank, a new report has found. According to the report, which was released on Wednesday by Israeli rights group B`tselem, Israel`s Supreme Court has been enabling the state to continue implementing illegal policies while ignoring the defects in Israel`s "planning policy" in the West Bank. The report, "Fake Justice", details how the state`s policy minimises Palestinian construction and aims to expand the building of illegal Jewish settlements.-rh12/2/2019
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Israeli settlers attack, injure Palestinian shepherd in Jordan ValleyMa`an - Locals told Ma`an that Israeli forces prevented ambulances, which belong to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS), from reaching Barakat for an entire hour. [NB: This happens on the same day as the evacuation orders mentioned right underneath-bz]12/2/2019
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Jenin raid - army shoots and wounds one Palestinian, abducts sevenIMEMC - At dawn, a large Israeli military force entered the city of Jenin with the aim of carrying out detentions. Encountering the protest of local youths, soldiers fired many live rounds, rubber- coated steel bullets and gas bombs at the protesters. One young man was shot with a live round in his knee. The soldiers then proceeded to break into and ransack numerous homes in the Jenin refugee camp, and take five local men into detention - abduction as Palestinians see it. At the same time, undercover Israeli soldiers dressed as Arabs invaded the home of Khaled Mansour, in Wadi Burqin area near Jenong, and searched the property before abducting him along with his son, Abdullah. [ak] 12/2/2019
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Palestinian battling cancer is denied exit from Gaza for treatmentAmjad Yaghi - +972 - 20 year old Ahlam says the pain has gotten so intense, she can’t sleep at night." (...) “All I want is to have the surgery so that the pain can go away." But already half a year she is refused by Israel to travel to the only Palestinian hospital equipped to do it - in East Jerusalem. [bz]12/2/2019
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Launch of Palestinian civilian monitor group angers settlers in HebronJACOB MAGID - The Times of Israel - Members of a new civilian monitor group launched by Palestinians in Hebron faced verbal and physical harassment from settlers Sunday as they walked a group of children to school in the flashpoint West Bank city. Footage from the skirmish showed an Israeli woman slapping Issa Amro, a local activist who is among the leaders of the group inaugurated less than two weeks after a pair of international monitor groups left Hebron.-rh 12/2/2019
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Photo Essay: Caves bring depopulated villages in the south Hebron Hills back to life Ahmad Al-Bazz - Mondoweiss - For weeks under the cloak of night Palestinians secretly renovated four caves and built a tin-roofed house in the West Bank hamlet of Ar-Rakeez where only a handful of residents live. Last week they opened the homes in a “bringing life back” ceremony. The event was not announced in advance as to avoid any potential disruption by the Israeli army, locals said.-rh12/2/2019
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Islamic Jihad, the new lord of Gaza?Shlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - Who’s leading whom in the Gaza Strip? Does Hamas lord over the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), a militant movement supported by Iran, or is it the other way around? Over the past few months, Israeli security forces have noted the growing influence of the Islamic Jihad on Hamas. Seeking to avoid problems with Iran, the Hamas leadership feels it has little choice but to follow the Islamic Jihad’s dictates in their actions when dealing with Israel and Egypt.-rh 12/2/2019
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Settlers to Palestinian laborers: `Work with human rights groups and lose your job`Edo Konrad - +972 - Settlers in the southern West Bank posted flyers warning Palestinian labourers not to cooperate with Israeli human rights activists or organizations if they want to keep their jobs. Tazpit News Agency, a settler-aligned English-language news outlet, reported earlier this week that Israeli settlers in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc have been posting these intimidating flyers around Palestinian villages nearby. The flyers threaten to ban Palestinians who cooperate with human rights groups from working in settlements there.-rh12/2/2019
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In Palestine, even visiting a father’s grave can be a decades-long battleBen White - Middle East Eye - Copty, born in July 1948, never knew her father, who was killed a few months earlier. The family lived in Ma’alul village outside Nazareth, but became internally displaced when the village was occupied and destroyed by Israeli forces. The cemetery where her father is buried is now inside a military base. Since 2000, Copty has made repeated formal requests to Israeli authorities to be able to visit the cemetery. While none of the relevant bodies have explicitly rejected her requests, neither have they explained the rationale for the endless delays. In 2015, Copty was allowed to briefly enter the military base, but was not allowed to access the cemetery. Disturbingly, during the visit, Copty saw “excavation work on one side of the cemetery and that excavations had apparently desecrated some graves,” with exposed skeletons visible.-rh12/2/2019
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Israel orders 300 Palestinians to evacuate homes in TubasMa`an - About 300 Palestinians will be homeless in the cold weather as a result of the Israeli military training, which poses danger to residents’ lives. According to Mutaz Bisharat, a Palestinian official who monitors settlement activity in the Jordan Valley/Tubas district, military trainings resulted in the destruction of 600 dunams (148 acres) of agricultural land and the leveling of another 140 (34.5 acres) other dunams. Palestinian residents of the Jordan Valley regularly face evacuations and interruption due to Israeli military exercises on or near their land. The district of Tubas, meanwhile, is one of the occupied West Bank`s most important agricultural centers. [bz]12/2/2019
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With U.S. aid cuts, Palestinian women pay biggest priceHenriette Chacar - +972 "|According to Bassem Abu Libdeh, the director of Al Makassed Hospital, U.S. funding used to cover 40 percent of costs for the six hospitals. Coupled with last September’s slash in aid to UNRWA, which amounted to a 30-percent budget cut to the United Nations agency tasked with providing services to millions of Palestinian refugees in the Middle East, many Palestinians can no longer afford the care they need. For women, this means limited access to breast cancer treatment or care for high-risk pregnancies available predominantly at these East Jerusalem hospitals." ca9/2/2019
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I survived the Gaza violence that Benny Gantz brags aboutHanine Hassan - +972 - "‘As a Palestinian expelled from Jaffa to Gaza, as someone whose family and friends have repeatedly been on the receiving end of Israel’s brute force, like all Palestinians, I know that the more violence Israel uses, the more it destroys the very legitimacy it seeks.’" - id7/2/2019
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“Hundred Million Dollar Home” Hebron Shop Keeper Punished for Resistance to OccupationAl-Khalil team - International Solidarity Movement - "Today, our good friend Abdulraouf Al-Mohtaseb’s, the famous owner of the 100 Million Dollar home , had his shop enclosed by steel barricades. We condemn this blatant act of aggression by the IDF against shop owners in the Old City of Al-Khalil." - id7/2/2019
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Assassins: Israeli Soldiers Just "Neutralized" A "Female Terrorist," aka A 16-Year-Old Palestinian Schoolgirl Going HomeAbby Zimet - Common Dreams - In their latest atrocity among too many to count or evidently acknowledge in the media, Israeli forces shot and killed Samah Zuhair Mubarak, 16, at al-Zaayim checkpoint in the occupied West Bank as she walked home from school Wednesday. Israel claims Mubarak tried to stab a security officer, after which “a rapid response by additional security forces brought about her neutralization with no injuries to the security personnel.” To bolster their narrative of a "female terrorist," officials posted a random picture of a small, pretty kitchen knife they said they found at the scene - they uncovered only schoolbooks in her back pack - and helpfully noted many knife attacks, especially by women, stem from personal issues and essentially constitute "suicide by cop."-rh5/2/2019
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After expulsion of West Bank observer force, Israel’s commitment to Oslo under fireMary McAuliffe - i24NEWS - For 22 years, Palestinians have welcomed the presence of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) as a necessary force for safeguarding their well-being in a city gripped by tension and whose adversaries are protected by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Jewish settlers in Hebron, however, spent years lobbying for their removal having long reviled the international force which they see as a nuisance. (...) Both Jews and Arabs in Hebron say they expect a significant shift in the lives of residents following TIPH’s exit. [bz]5/2/2019
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21-year-old Palestinian shot, killed by Israeli forcesMa`an - The Israeli army claimed that one of the Palestinians passing by on the motorcycle threw a suspicious object at the soldiers situated near the al-Jalama checkpoint. However, locals pointed out that no suspicious object was seen being thrown. [bz]5/2/2019
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Presidency: Israel`s refusal to renew TIPH`s mandate unacceptableMa`an News Agency - " Palestinian presidential spokesperson Nabil Abu Rdeineh said that Israeli Prime Minister`s decision not to renew the mandate of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) means that "it has abandoned the implementation of agreements signed under international auspices and its obligations under these agreements, which is rejected and is unacceptable." Abu Rdeineh said in a statement "We call on the countries sponsoring this agreement to take a clear stance from this grave Israeli position and to immediately act to pressure the Israeli government to continue implementation of the agreement as agreed and not to treat Israel as a state above the law." ca4/2/2019
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Contrary to Shin Bet (ISA) and IDF statements: Saleh Barghouti was shot point-blank in apparent extrajudicial killingB`Tselem - B’Tselem’s investigation found that, contrary to official Israeli statements, Saleh Barghouti did not try to flee or run anyone over, nor could he have tried: two security vehicles were blocking the taxi he was driving at either end, and he was surrounded by some 10 security personnel who shot him point-blank – an operation resembling an extrajudicial killing. Official attempts to sanction the killing in retrospect ensure no one will be held accountable [ry] 4/2/2019
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