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Today in Palestine!

Mardi, 15 octobre 2007

Tuesday 16 October 2007

PCHR weekly report: “Two Palestinians killed, seven wounded, as the army continues its violations”
The Palestinian Center For Human Rights (PCHR), based in Gaza, published its weekly report on the Israeli violations in the occupied Palestinian territories in the period between October 4 and October 10, 2007.

DFLP slams Israel’s decision to annex Palestinian land

The Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) on Thursday issued a statement slamming Israel’s decision to annex 1200 Dunums of Palestinian-owned land in the Jerusalem area, and branding it a direct violation of international law.

US silent on Israel grab of Arab land

The United States refused to immediately comment Wednesday on Israel’s decision to confiscate Arab land near Jerusalem, one day before Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was to head to the region.

Lebanese PM condemns Israeli confiscation of Palestinian lands

Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Seniora condemned Thursday the Israeli decision to confiscate over103 hectares of Palestinian lands surrounding Jerusalem. In a statement, Seniora denounced that the current Israeli decision alongside the construction of the separating barrier were attempts to cut out the West Bank from Jerusalem, which revealed that talks regarding regional peace was hoax.

Palestinians outraged at Israel’s lands confiscation orders

Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat on Thursday told visiting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs David Welch the Palestinians were outraged at the latest Israeli orders of lands confiscation.

Israel denies confiscated Arab land for settlers

Israel denied on Friday that freshly ordered Arab land expropriations between Jerusalem and a key Jewish settlement would be used to expand settlements in the occupied West Bank. “The confiscated land is intended to build roads, given the completion of the security fence around Jerusalem, and has nothing to do with any expansion of Maale Adumim,” Miri Eisin, a government spokeswoman, told AFP. http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20071012/wl_mideast_afp/mideastconflictisraelsettlers_071012101819;_ylt=A0WTUd2Yjw9HAzwAfAwUvioA

Israeli Army Deputy Chief: Gaza invasion “a matter of timing”

The Deputy Chief of Staff of The Israeli Military, Moshe Kaplinsky, on Thursday spoke of the likelihood of an imminent invasion of the Gaza Strip by Israeli forces, adding that troops would “stay there for a few months.”

Gaza goes hungry as Israeli sanctions bite

It does not take shopkeeper Salah Sultan long to count his stock. There are six tins of sardines, four bottles of vegetable oil, one packet of nappies, nine boxes of wafers and a large tin of powdered milk. Grains and pulses have been removed from their original packing and subdivided into more affordable portions. Above the door is a space where a television used to be, and by his elbow is the Qur’an and his ledger book.

Sweets and tears in Gaza at Eid

As Muslims marked the Eid el-Fitr holiday with gifts and feasts on Friday, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip felt the tightening grip of an Israeli embargo and mourned the dead from factional fighting. Fluttering banners showed up the division: yellow in a few areas for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction, many more green flags for the Hamas Islamist movement, whose forces routed Fatah in June.

Internal conflicts and shortages make for a sad holiday in Gaza

Thousands of Palestinians gathered early Friday in the Gaza Strip for dawn prayers celebrating the festival of Eid al-Fitr, but the atmosphere this year was hardly one of celebration. In Gaza, the festival is marked by international isolation, empty shelves and bitter internal rivalries, casting a pall over what is meant to be one of the happiest dates in the Muslim calendar.

Lean times for holiday shoppers in Gaza

Border closures that followed Hamas’ violent takeover in the Gaza Strip have depleted supplies of everything from cement to cigarettes. Parents hoping to buy gifts for their children to celebrate the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan are finding slim pickings. Ramadan ends Friday or Saturday with the traditional feast, called Eid al Fitr, that typically includes gifts for children. Popular items such as sweets and clothing are in short supply as a result of the shutdown in shipments through the main cargo crossing from Israel, which has been sealed since mid-June. Israel cited security reasons in closing the Karni crossing, but it has permitted limited shipments of basic foodstuffs and medicine through other crossings.

Fayyad says Palestinians need more donor aid

The Palestinian Authority (PA) will suffer a “crisis” if international donors do not commit to giving more funds before the year’s end, Salam Fayyad, the premier of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ caretaker government, warned Thursday. “We will be in a real crisis if donors don’t guarantee more funds before the end of the year,” Fayyad said in a statement, adding that previous donations will run out in the upcoming months.

Stranded Palestinians turn down Sudanese asylum offer

Most of the over 300 Palestinian-Iraqi refugees stranded for the past 18 months at the makeshift al-Tanf refugee camp on the Syrian side of the Iraq-Syria border have rejected an offer of asylum in Sudan.

Hamas and Christian leaders confirm mutual respect and unity

Leaders of the deposed Hamas government in Gaza and high-ranking Christian figures in the region on Friday reasserted their unity and mutual respect for another, arguing that, in spite of recent attacks, Islamic-Christian relations remained strong.

Abbas, Olmert can make deal despite weakness-Blair

Middle East envoy Tony Blair said on Friday that, despite their apparent weakness at home, President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert can deliver a Palestinian-Israeli peace deal.

Hamas leader warns Abbas against peace concessions

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh on Thursday urged Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas not to “fall into a trap” and make concessions to Israel at a planned peace conference which “would create grave risks for Palestinians”.

Israeli Minister claims peace talks could lead to Government’s collapse

The Israeli Minister for Strategic Affairs, Avigdor Lieberman, on Thursday told Quartet Envoy Tony Blair that the upcoming Middle East Peace Conference could lead to the collapse of Israel’s coalition government, media sources have reported.

Extreme right to launch campaign for Yigal Amir’s release

Rightist organization Committee for Democracy to produce film about Rabin killer’s life, launches nationwide campaign for his parole from prison.

FACTBOX-How far apart are Olmert and Abbas on deal?

With about a month to go before a U.S.-sponsored conference on Palestinian statehood, how far apart are Israeli and Palestinian negotiators?

Peace concert in Jericho called off over security concerns

A West Bank peace concert for supporters of a two-state solution to the conflict with Israel has been called off because of security concerns, the organizer said late Thursday. The concert was to have been held simultaneously in a football stadium in the Jericho and in a park in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv on Oct. 18.

Nonviolent resistance a means, not the end

In a recent article on the openDemocracy website, the rewritten Palestinian Authority policy document that replaced “muqawama” (resistance) with “popular struggle” was hailed as having “the potential to dramatically transform a conflict whose just resolution has continually eluded diplomats and militants.” [1] The writer Maria Stephan may be admired for her optimism about the possibility of large-scale mobilization in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) for a program of nonviolent resistance, but there is a twofold failure of contextualization that compromises her analysis.

Palestinians return to desolate, dangerous camp

The first Palestinian families displaced by 15 weeks of intense fighting between the army and Islamist militants that left much of north Lebanon’s Nahr al-Bared refugee camp in ruins have begun returning home to start rebuilding their lives.

Families of dead Lebanese troops block refugee return

Families of soldiers who died in fierce battles with Islamists at a refugee camp in northern Lebanon on Friday briefly prevented Palestinian refugees from returning to the camp. Some 400 men, women and children burned tyres and placed stones at the northern entrance of Nahr al-Bared camp forcing a bus filled with refugees to turn back.

Syria unlikely to join peace conference

Syrian President Bashar Assad all but ruled out his country’s participation in a U.S.-sponsored international peace conference on the Middle East, suggesting in an interview published Thursday that the meeting has no chance for success. His comments come amid growing skepticism of the conference among some Arab governments, which have expressed doubts the planned gathering in November will tackle the main issues of the conflict with Israel.

Assad slams Lebanese parties who follow Israel

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad slammed Lebanese who he said had chosen to side with Israel and submit themselves to foreigners instead of taking the Arab path and that of resistance. In an interview published on Thursday, Assad said of the neighbouring nation where it was powerbroker for nearly three decades: “It is impossible to build a relationship with some parties who in Lebanon ... are close to Israel, submit themselves to foreign countries and do not believe in Lebanon.”

Cheney, Rice divided over Israeli intel

Officials in the Bush administration are divided over the significance of intelligence provided by Israel that led to last month’s strike inside Syria on a reported nuclear facility, the New York Times reported Wednesday.