Tag Archives: palestine

IOF ban 3 Palestinians from entering their workplace at Al-Aqsa mosque

Religious extremism and racial extremism – the worst mix.

PNN/ Jerusalem/

Israeli occupation forces on Sunday expelled employees of the Islamic Waqf in occupied Jerusalem, banning them from entering their place of work at the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Local sources said that the Israeli police had removed al-Aqsa Mosque guard Mehdi al-Abbasi, in addition to reconstruction workers Raed Zaghir and Hossam Sidr, from the mosque for a week. In addition, they were given an appointment for questioning next week to consider the length of their ban from the mosque.

In the same context, Israeli settlers this morning stormed the courtyards of Al-Aqsa mosque, under heavy protection by soldiers,  and performed rituals and prayers prayers inside the mosque.

The Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian territories, Mohammed Hussein, said that the occupation authorities are exploiting religious events and Jewish holidays to intensify their incursions into occupied Jerusalem in general, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque in particular.

 

US administration defining BDS movement at American Universities

Censorship of US citizens on mass scale being planned

PNN/ Bethlehem/

The US administration is considering measures to ban and sanction the international movement to boycott Israel, from U.S. universities where the movement thrives.

Hebrew sources said the U.S. administration has already started taking steps to ban the BDS movement in American university, after Kenneth L. Marcus  was appointed as the new director of the Department of Civil Rights in the United States.

Marcus announced the start of an investigation into old cases, the most important of which was the Rutgers University case in New Jersey, where there will be an investigation into its activities, and deal with a number of reported anti-Semitic incidents against Jewish students  several years ago.

The Obama administration closed the file at the time, however, Marcus told the Zionist Organization in America that he would cancel the decision of the Obama administration and reconsider the case to see whether this is a case of religious hatred or attacks on ethnic groups.

According to Israeli media, the Trump government also began to define the activities of the boycott campaign against the State of Israel as anti-Semitic.

Arab and Palestinian activists and supporters at the United States expressed their disappointment with the anti-BDS decision, saying that the US administration has taken a side in the conflict and “decided to accuse all those who sympathize with the Palestinian cause as anti-Semitic.”

IOF attack elementary school, assault teachers

power corrupts the soul…

PNN/ Hebron/

Dozens of students and a schoolteacher on Monday were wounded after Israeli occupation forces stormed an elementary school in Hebron this morning.

Local sources said that the Israeli soldiers assaulted a number of school teachers, injuring teacher Shukri al-Zaru al-Tamimi, before they threw stunt and teargas grenades towards the students in the vicinity of the school and inside its walls.

The attack spread terror among the students where dozens suffered from teargas suffocation.

The school has some 370 students in elementary classes.

 

PA: Trump closing Washington PLO office is “vicious blackmail”

PNN/ Ramallah/
 The Trump administration on Monday is expected to announce that it will close the Palestine Liberation Organization’s office in Washington, The Wall Street Journal reported today.
Citing unidentified White House officials, the WSJ said the announcement is expected to be made in prepared remarks by National Security Adviser John Bolton, and is part of a widening U.S. pressure campaign on Palestinian officials amid stalled Middle East peace efforts, the paper reported.The U.S. “will always stand with our friend and ally, Israel,” Bolton plans to say in his prepared remarks, the Journal reported, citing a draft it had reviewed.

He also plans to threaten to impose sanctions against the International Criminal Court if it moves ahead with investigations of the U.S. and Israel, the paper said. Actions the U.S. could take include banning ICC judges and prosecutors from entering America.

“We will sanction their funds in the U.S. financial system, and we will prosecute them in the U.S. criminal system,” the paper reported Bolton was planning to say. “We will do the same for any company or state that assists an ICC investigation of Americans.”

This comes after a series of measurements against the Palestinian leadership and people, including moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and announcing Jerusalem the capital of Israel in May, in addition to the recent cut of funding to the UNRWA, which is responsible for aiding millions of Palestinian refugees in the Middle East.

Senior PLO official, Dr. Saeb Erekat described the decision as another affirmation of the Trump Administration’s policy to collectively punish the Palestinian people, including by cutting financial support for humanitarian services including health and education.

Erekat said that the leadership in response will take the necessary measures to protect the rights of Palestinian citizens living in the United States to access their consular services.

“This dangerous escalation shows that the US is willing to disband the international system in order to protect Israeli crimes and attacks against the land and people of Palestine as well as against peace and security in the rest of our region,” Erekat said in a statement.

“We reiterate that the rights of the Palestinian people are not for sale, that we will not succumb to US threats and bullying and that we will continue our legitimate struggle for freedom, justice, and independence, including by all political and legal means possible.  Accordingly, we continue to call upon the International Criminal Court to open its immediate investigation into Israeli crimes.| he added.

Erekat concluded by saying that the international community has the responsibility to react.

“Lowering the flag of Palestine in Washington DC means much more than a new slap by the Trump Administration against peace and justice; it symbolizes the US attacks against the international system as a whole, including the Paris Convention, UNESCO and the Human Rights Council among others,” he added.

To her part, PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi said in a statement “It is ironic that the US is punishing the PLO, the national representative of the Palestinian people and the highest political body that made the commitment to reaching a political and legal settlement of the Palestinian question and that has engaged in negotiations with successive US administrations for decades.”

“This form of crude and vicious blackmail, as clearly articulated by officials including US President Trump, United States Special Envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, senior advisor to President Trump Jared Kushner, and National Security Advisor John Bolton, once again seeks to punish the Palestinian people as a whole who are already victims of the ruthless Israeli military occupation,” Ashrawi said.

Trump to Cut Millions From E. Jerusalem Hospitals; Expert Warns of ‘Collapse’

Trump has a thing for hurting children and families… to get his way.

WASHINGTON /PNN/

The Trump administration decided to significantly cut U.S. support for hospitals in East Jerusalem that serve the city’s Palestinian population, Palestinian from Gaza and West Bank according Haaretz Israeli newspaper.

A State Department official tells Haaretz this decision is part of the administration’s broader approach of cutting Palestinian aid

These hospitals were supposed to receive more than $20 million according to the foreign aid budget approved by the U.S. Congress for the current year, but the Trump administration decided to cut the funding in its entirety.

A State Department official told Haaretz on Thursday that this decision is part of the administration’s broader approach of cutting Palestinian aid and investing it in other priorities.

The administration deliberated for a number of weeks whether or not to include the East Jerusalem hospitals in its budget cut, since some of these hospitals are supported by influential Christian groups in the United States.

The budget cut could cause harm to at least five hospitals in East Jerusalem, including Augusta Victoria hospital near Mt. Scopus and the St. John Eye Hospital, which is the main provider of eye treatments for Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

There was indication of the influence of Christian groups supporting these hospitals earlier this year, when congress approved the Taylor Force Act, which put severe restrictions on U.S. funding for Palestinians.

The law included a special and specific exclusion for these hospitals, which was initiated by congress after some of the powerful Christian organizations supporting these hospitals had lobbied. The lobbying effort, however, did not influence the Trump administration’s budget cuts.

Dave Harden, a former U.S. official who was in charge of USAID in the West Bank, warned on Friday that the decision could lead to the “collapse” of Augusta Victoria hospital.

The hospital and others in East Jerusalem serve not only the city’s Palestinians, but also Palestinians from Gaza and the West Bank, including cancer patients and children.

A Palestinian Authority official told NPR that “these acts will not change our position toward our cause one bit. On the contrary, it consolidates our positions toward every issue, including Jerusalem.”

Ashrawi: Barkat’s pledge to expel UNRWA from Jerusalem “arrogant and outrageous” 

 PNN/ Jerusalem/

 On behalf of the PLO Executive Committee, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi strongly condemned the so-called ‘Mayor’ of Jerusalem Nir Barkat’s pledge to expel UNRWA from occupied Jerusalem, close down all its institutions, including the schools, and to shut down its operations and programs.

“Barkat’s pledge to expel UNRWA from occupied Jerusalem and shut down its services and programs is arrogant and outrageous,” Ashrawi said. “Israel is responsible for creating the Palestinian refugee problem, and it has no right to alter the mandate, duties and responsibilities of UNRWA as defined by the United Nations,” she continued.

Established by UN General Assembly Resolution 302 (IV) of December 8, 1949, UNRWA provides essential services, assistance and opportunities for work, growth and development to 5.3 million Palestinian refugees in Occupied Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. It is also a safeguard for the Palestinian refugees’ legal and political rights.

UNRWA was set up by the international community (including the United States) as a step towards the implementation of UN General Assembly Resolution 194 (III) which the Israeli government then had pledged to fulfill but reneged on its commitment.

“Such a declaration is a direct affront to the international community and its laws and institutions, as well as a deliberate targeting of the Palestinian refugees and their rights,” she said.

“Clearly, Barkat’s comments have been emboldened by the latest American decision to defund UNRWA and redefine the status of Palestinian refugees. These moves are part of the US administration’s plan to dismantle all permanent status issues at the core of which are occupied Jerusalem, the Palestinian refugees and the right of return, the two-state solution, 1967 borders, and the legality of the settlements, thereby destroying the chances of peace,” she added.

Ashrawi also said that regardless of the American administration’s “irresponsible and illegal latest moves, neither the United States nor Israel (let alone the so-called ‘Mayor’ of Jerusalem) can impose their will on the international community or target its institutions.”

“It is up to governments worldwide and all members of the international community to rise to the challenge and intervene immediately to ensure that such threats are not carried out and to maintain the integrity of the global legal and political system,” she concluded.

Palestinian minister injured by Israeli bullets near Ramallah

Ramallah/PNN/

Chairman of the Commission against the Wall and Settlements Minister Walid Assaf, was injured when he was shot by rubber-coated bullets by Israeli soldiers in the village of Ras Karkar, near Ramallah in the occupied West Bank.

Two of his escorts were also injured in the hand and leg respectively after being shot by rubber-coated bullets.

Assaf said he was partaking in a nonviolent protest against Israeli plans to confiscate lands in the village when Israeli soldiers fired rubber-coated steel rounds at them. He was shot and lightly injured in his left ear.

The minister called for further protests to confront Israel’s attempts to take over Palestinians’ lands in the village.

Source : WAFA NEWS

Haley: Palestinians’ right of return should be ‘off the table’

foul

  PNN/ Washington/
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley questioned UN statistics on the number of Palestinian refugees and ruled out the right of return, in the latest move by the Trump administration to challenge how aid is given to the Palestinians.
In comments on Tuesday to the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, a research institute in Washington that often sympathizes with Israel, Haley agreed with a source that the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) was exaggerating the numbers of Palestinian refugees. She suggested that the Trump administration would consider officially rejecting the the Palestinian claim that all refugees who were displaced between 1947 and 1948 and their descendants should be allowed to return to modern day Israel after a final peace agreement.
“You’re looking at the fact that, yes, there’s an endless number of refugees that continue to get assistance,” Haley said, adding that the Trump White House would not restore its previous funding levels unless the body made dramatic changes.
“We will be a donor if [UNRWA] reforms what it does … if they actually change the number of refugees to an accurate account, we will look back at partnering them,” she said, adding that “the Palestinians continue to bash America” and yet “they have their hand out wanting UNRWA money.”

The United States earlier this year cut its aid to UNRWA to $60 million after pledging $350 million a year.
“If we actually change the number of refugees to an exact number, we will reconsider our partnership,” Haley said.
UNRWA says it provides services to some 5 million Palestinian refugees – mostly descendants of refugees who were displaced and expelled from Palestine during the 1948 war that established Israel on the ruins of the Palestinian people.
Haley said that other Arab states in the Middle East needed to pressure the Palestinians to change course if there were ever to be a final peace accord.

“We have to have them come to the table for a peace agreement,” Haley said. “That’s only going to happen if the region pushes them for that to happen.”

US set to announce its rejection of Palestinians’ right of return

US to support occupation and stealing land.

PNN/ Bethlehem/

Israeli media reports on Sunday said that the US is set to announce its rejection of the Palestinian refugees’ right of return to Palestine.

According to Israel’s Hadashot News on Saturday, the Trump administration will make the announcement over the next few days, in which it will claim that only around one million Palestinians are eligible for refugee status.

The claim will contradict UN statistics which classify over five million Palestinians as refugees.

Earlier this month, the American magazine Foreign Policy obtained emails written by Jared Kushner, Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law, to senior US officials in which he pressured Jordan to remove the refugee status of millions of Palestinians in a bid to disrupt UNRWA’s work.

Washington has on multiple occasions voiced opposition over treating the descendants of Palestinian refugees as refugees themselves.

In January, the US government announced that it would withhold $65 million of a $125 million aid installment to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).

On Friday, the United States also canceled over $200 million in funds for the Palestinian Authority, who in turn described the cuts as political blackmail.

According to the definition of UNRWA, Palestine refugees are defined as “persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.” When the Agency began operations in 1950, it was responding to the needs of about 750,000 Palestine refugees. Today, some 5 million Palestine refugees are eligible for UNRWA services.