Tag Archives: palestine

 Israel publishes order to allow demolishing Palestinian structures in Area C 

PNN/ Ramallah/

On May 9, 2018, the Israeli occupation military published military order 1797, with the main objective of expediting Israel’s unlawful demolitions of Palestinian infrastructure in the so-called “Area C” of occupied Palestine. The new unlawful order further expands the authority of the occupation civil administration to unilaterally target and demolish Palestinian structures within 96 hours, irrespective of the status of the underlying land or the issuing of building permits.

The Palestinian government, represented by Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah, strongly condemned this new violation stating that “this illegal development would generate more crimes against Palestinian rights of access to a safe and stable living environment and would worsen the already dire conditions of 393,000 Palestinian citizens”.

In a statement from the PMO office, the Palestinian government said it has also consistently strived to support Palestinian citizens residing in the so-called “Area C”, which includes supporting their resilience and protection from Israeli violations. However, it’s important to mention that Palestinians living under a belligerent military occupation are, under the international humanitarian law, a “protected population”, which obligates the occupying power to protect the occupied population. Israel has not merely neglected its duties as an occupying power, but rather has proactively and willfully done the opposite, flagrantly violating the inalienable rights of the occupied Palestinian population.

Despite, the international community constant rejection and condemnation of the Israeli illegal colonial practices, the new order comes as a measurement against International aid actors to prevent any legal action against future Israeli illegal orders, which has proven quite successful in preventing or delaying of the illegal demolitions until now. Therefore, Israel is using the new order to continue its unlawful demolition policies to drive Palestinian citizens away from their land and pave the way for the establishment of additional illegal colonial settlements.

The Palestinian government strongly urged third states, international partners and the international community at large to take concrete steps against the Israeli occupation government to rescind the illegal Military Order, which violates article 49 and 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. As well as, the recent UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres statement, that “forcible transfer does not necessarily require the use of physical force by authorities, but may be triggered by specific circumstances that leave individuals or communities with no choice but to leave; this is known as a coercive environment” (A/HRC/34/38, March 2017).

The Palestinian government also claimed the international community to not only hold Israel accountable for its numerous violations of the rights of the Palestinian people, but also to tackle the root of the problem, namely Israel’s seemingly open-ended belligerent occupation, which prevents Palestinian citizens from ever achieving a just and fair peace based on the internationally-backed two-State solution.

Report: Israel Continues Judaization in Jerusalem, ethnic cleansing in area C

 By: Madeeha Araj/ NBPRS/

The policy of Judaization and ethnic cleansing practiced by the occupation authorities to displace the Palestinian population fro m their land and tighten their life, and expansion of settlements and military areas are continued in violation of international law based on discrimination, racism and hatred. According to the information by ” Sant Eif Organization” which specialized in following up the legal matters, has  said, the occupation government and its army have called for the transfer of the administrative demolition to the West Bank C areas, which means giving the Civil Administration extensive powers to demolish houses and facilities without referring to the courts. Thus, it issued a military order to remove the new buildings and to demolish any building under construction within six months. The military order includes any residential building that does not exceed 30 days from the date of entry into force, even if the building is completed. This military order comes into force on 17-4-2018 signed by the military ruler.

Those military orders are part of the policy of forced displacement adopted by the Israeli occupation authorities, which aims at displacing the Palestinian population from their land and tightening the siege on them, to expand the settlements and the military areas, which is a serious violation of international humanitarian law and escalates to war crimes based on discrimination and ethnic cleansing.

On the other hand, the chapters and repercussions of the Nakba and the massacres of Palestinian cities and villages coincided with the opening of the American Embassy in Jerusalem and the American’s recognition of it as the capital of Israel in violation of international law and resolutions of international legitimacy, including Security Council resolution 478 , which assert that East Jerusalem is occupied territory, and that the issue of Jerusalem is a final status issue, and its future must be resolved through direct negotiations.

Within this context, two-thirds of the members of the UN Security Council expressed deep concern over the failure to implement a resolution in 2016 calling for an end to Israeli settlement construction in the occupied West Bank. The UN’s envoy to the Middle East, Nikolai Mladenov, told the Council last year that Israel was putting an end to the demand for a halt to settlement construction. The National Bureau considered that the decision of the Palestinian leadership to refer the settlement file to the International Criminal Court is an important tool to submit complaints and prosecute the occupation leaders, as settlement and ethnic cleansing are war crimes. 

On the eve of the transfer of the US Embassy to the occupied city of Jerusalem, the Israeli government decided on 13-5-2018 to allocate NIS two billions to strengthen Israeli sovereignty on theeastern part of the city, besides, allocation of about NIS 350 million to develop the surrounding areas of the occupied old town, including organizing Jewish events in the Mount of Olives, and upgrading the quality of cleaning and maintenance services in public places and the restoration of the Jewish cemetery at Mount Olives.

The Israeli occupation government has also decided to control various parts of East Jerusalem and allocated NIS 50 million to confiscate lands from the neighborhoods of Beit Hanina and Sur Baher  by the end of 2021, to be completed until 2025. The so-called Minister of Justice, “Israel” Elite Shaked said, “We will strengthen our presence in East Jerusalem, and we have already begun to impose Israeli sovereignty over East Jerusalem..

At the same time, the Israeli government gave the green light to invest US $ 56 million for a cable car project linking West Jerusalem to the old town of East Jerusalem. Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin, said on the eve of the official transfer of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, “This project will change the face of Jerusalem because it will facilitate the arrival of tourists and visitors to the Western Wall. The cable car, which has a length of 1.4 kilometers, can transport 3,000 people an hour in both directions at 21 km ph. According to his estimations the project will be ready and operated by 2021.

In addition, the Municipality of Nir Barak supports and encourages the Government to construct 4 buildings in the Gilo settlement project south of Jerusalem, each of which includes 22 housing units. This will increase the number of housing units in each project by 88 ones. The housing units will be different in size, and cost between NIS 2 million and NIS 2.7 million in 2019, 12 units have already been sold. According to Avi Tservati, Deputy Director General of Tsrifati Shimon, who oversees the construction of the “Tsrifati Pisgat Ze’ev” project, according to Israeli data, a total of 2,164 housing units have been built in Jerusalem since the beginning of the current decade. Building permits issued in 2016 and 2017 are the most important factor in the increase number of building, most of which are located in Pisgat Ze’ev. The new Tsrifate Pisgat Zeev project includes the construction of 92 new housing units in four buildings, 2 of which are 7-8 floors tall and 2 others 6-7 floors, each floor consists of 3residential units. According to Hebrew sources, American Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, financed the organization of the Friends of the Religious School “Commute” in Beit El in 2013 for $ US 12,000, with the aim of foiling any attempt to evacuate any Jewish settlement in the West Bank. 

Israeli settlers, police, brutally attack Palestinian worshipers in Al-Aqsa

PNN/ Jerusalem/

Israeli settlers and special forces on Sunday morning violently attacked Palestinian worshipers and guards of Al-Aqsa mosque, after over 1000 settlers broke into the yards of the mosque.

Videos from PNN reporter showed Israeli special forces violently attack Palestinians in the mosque, in midst of Israeli settlers chanting pro-Israeli slogans.

IOF arrested a Palestinian child after brutally beating him inside the gates of the mosque compound. Shortly after, IOF arrested guard Mohammad Al-Salhi after brutal beating as well.

PNN reporter said that the Magharba gate after 1042 extremist settlers broke  into the mosque compound.

Clashes are still taking place at the moment

Erekat on US embassy: Washington violating obligations under int’l law

PNN/ Ramallah/

Secretary General of the PLO on Monday said that by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moving its embassy thereto, the Trump administration is violating its obligations under international law, including UNSCR 478, and the U.S. own commitments towards the peace process.

“As Washington pursues a policy of encouragement of international anarchy and disregard for organizations and international law, we call upon all diplomatic corps, civil society organizations, and religious authorities to boycott the inauguration ceremony of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, lest they lend legitimacy to an illegal decision and to continued Israeli policies of occupation, colonization, and annexation,” Erekat said in an official statement.

Erekat said that this move is not only illegal but will also thwart the achievement of a just and lasting peace between two sovereign and democratic states on the 1967 borders, Israel and Palestine living side by side in peace and security.

He finished by saying that those who attend the ceremony will thus be sending an ominous message, a message that they encourage flagrant violations of international law and the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people.

US drops “Occupied Territories” term in new document

The reality of the right’s being politically correct – PC

PNN/ Bethlehem/

On Saturday, the US State Department has released a new document that dropped the term “occupied” in a report referring to the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Golan Heights.

Previous US Human Rights Practices reports had a section on “Israel and the Occupied Territories. However, this year’s document refers instead to “Israel, Golan Heights, West Bank, and Gaza.”

The change comes after US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, last December asked the State Department to stop calling the West Bank occupied, which would make a noted departure in US policy.

In response, Palestinian Foreign Minister Dr. Riyad al-Maliki that the abolition of the US State of the term “occupied territories” and its replacement in the West Bank and Gaza Strip will not change the reality and the legal status of the Palestinian territories.

Al-Maliki told Voice of Palestine radio on Sunday morning that Friedman’s attempts to bring down the term occupied territories indicates that the US has completely lost its credibility, and showing  full bias to the occupation and settlements.

To his part, Israeli minister of army, Avigdor Lieberman hailed the decision, saying  “The lie of the occupied Palestinian territories is being exposed.”

“They say that if you repeat a lie enough, it eventually becomes the truth, but the truth will always be stronger,” Liberman tweeted. “The announcement by the US state department is proof of that.”

Israel captured the West Bank, Gaza and Golan Heights following the six day war in 1967. Since then, the majority of the West Bank has been under Israeli military and civil control. In 2005, Hamas took control of the Gaza strip, which falls now under Israeli siege.

Natalie Portman Decides Against Israel Honor, Cancels Trip

Bethlehem/PNN/

Natalie Portman has decided against receiving an honor in Israel and canceled her trip to accept the prize, according to the organization that had planned to salute the actress.

The Genesis Prize, which honors notable individuals “who inspire others through their dedication to the Jewish community and Jewish values,” has canceled its annual ceremony in Israel after Portman’s decision to not take part in the June event.

The actress had been announced as the honoree in November by the organization.

“Ms. Portman is a highly accomplished actress, a committed social activist and a wonderful human being. The staff of the Foundation enjoyed getting to know her over the past six months, admires her humanity, and respects her right to publicly disagree with the policies of the government of Israel,” read a statement from the Genesis Prize Foundation.

The foundation added: “However, we are very saddened that she has decided not to attend the Genesis Prize Ceremony in Jerusalem for political reasons. We fear that Ms. Portman’s decision will cause our philanthropic initiative to be politicized, something we have worked hard for the past five years to avoid.”

Portman’s rep declined to comment:” ‘The mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities is simply not in line with my Jewish values. Because I care about Israel, I must stand up against violence, corruption, inequality and abuse of power’.

In December, singer Lorde canceled a planned concert date in Israeli city Tel Aviv amid protests for artists to boycott performing in the country. Earlier in 2017, Radiohead similarly faced criticism ahead of its July 19 concert in the city. Frontman Thom Yorke addressed protesters in a Rolling Stone interview a month before the show, saying, “There’s an awful lot of people who don’t agree with the [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement, including us. I don’t agree with the cultural ban at all.”

Portman, who was born in Jerusalem, has openly criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the past, telling The Hollywood Reporter in a 2015 interview, “I’m very much against Netanyahu. Against. I am very, very upset and disappointed that he was re-elected.”

Increased pressure for visiting artists or prominent personalities planning to visit Israel has been applied by the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions group, which protests the Jewish state over its treatment of of the Palestinians and the West Bank.

After 26 Oscar nominees were given Israel tour packages as part of their 2017 Academy Awards swag bags, for instance, BDS issued a statement urging stars not to take the offer and none of the nominees used the offers to travel to Israel.

Previous Hollywood honorees of the Genesis Prize include actor Michael Douglas and musician Itzhak Perlman, who has performed scores for films including Schindler’s List, Hero and Memoirs of a Geisha.

After decades of egregious human rights violations against Palestinians, Israel’s recent massacre of peaceful protesters in Gaza has made its brand so toxic that even well-known Israeli-American cultural figures, like Natalie Portman, now refuse to blatantly whitewash, or art-wash, Israeli crimes and apartheid policies.

The Palestinian-led, Nobel Peace Prize nominated Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights has been growing in the cultural mainstream in the last few years. Of the twenty six Oscar nominees in 2016, none has accepted an all-expense-paid Israeli propaganda junket.

Natalie Portman said on Friday night that she does not support the Boycott, Divesment, and Sanctions movement, and that her decision not to attend the Genesis Prize…

Official statistic: Israel killed 33, wounded 4,279 Gazans since 30 March

Gaza/PNN/

Israeli occupation forces have killed 33 peaceful Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip and wounded 4,279 others in the three weeks since the start of the “Great March of Return” demonstrations on 30 March, the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza said yesterday.

In a statement, the ministry said three out of the 33 protesters killed were children. It also said that 642 of the wounded are children and 243 are women.

According to the statement, 1,539 of the wounded were targeted with live ammunition, 388 with rubber-coated steel bullets.

The statement also said that 134 of the wounded arrived in hospitals in critical conditions, 1,183 with moderate injuries and 2,962 with light wounds.

It stated that 196 of the unarmed protesters were shot in the neck and head, 384 in the upper parts of their bodies, 96 in the back and chest, 116 in their upper abdominal area, 1,496 in the lower parts of their bodies and 113 in other locations.

The ministry accused the Israeli occupation of deliberately targeting journalists and medics as one journalist was killed, 66 journalists and 44 medics were wounded and 19 ambulances were targeted.

Meanwhile, the ministry of education said 84 students were among the wounded, including seven who are in critical conditions, 57 suffering moderate wounds and 20 suffered light injuries.

It is worth mentioning that this number did not include an elderly farmer and two youths who were killed by the Israeli forces prior to the official launch of the demonstrations after the Friday prayer on 30 March.

Several Palestinian and international bodies and rights groups, including the UN, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the Israeli rights group B’Tselem reiterated that the Israeli occupation forces have been using lethal force to deter unarmed and peaceful protesters.

On 30 March, thousands of Palestinians in Gaza started peaceful protests near the eastern borders of the coastal enclave, which separates Gaza from Israel, to mark the 42nd anniversary of Palestinian Land Day. This year’s protests are set to continue until 15 May to mark 70 years since the Nakba and the forceful expulsion of nearly a million Palestinians to make way for the formation of the state of Israel.

Settlers storm archaeological site in Sebastia, northern West Bank

PNN/ Nablus/

A group of Israeli settlers on Monday stormed a historic archaeological site in the town of Sebastia near Nablus, northern West Bank, under heavy protection by the Israeli army.

The mayor of Sebastia Mohammed Azem, told WAFA agency that a number of settlers, broke into the site amid the protection by the army, who closed the area for any other visitors.

He added that clashes broke out in the area following the visit, while Israeli soldiers fired teargas towards the protesters.

Azem pointed out that the town is constantly attacked by the occupation and settlers, especially with the approach of a national festival in the town that will be organized by the municipality next Friday, and  will be held in the archaeological area.