donderdag 26 oktober 2017

Zionist Fascism

As olive harvest begins, settlers flood Palestinian trees with sewage


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Violence / Detentions — West Bank / Jerusalem
Israeli colonists flood dozens of Palestinian olive trees with sewage
IMEMC 24 Oct —  Israeli colonists flooded, Tuesday, dozens of Palestinian olive trees with sewage water, in Deir al-Hatab town, east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus. Coordinator of the Israeli Rabbis for Human Rights organization in the occupied West Bank, Zakaria al-Sidda, said the colonists flooded the olive orchards near Elon Morehillegal colony. He added that the Palestinian owners of the olive orchards have been isolated from them, and are only allowed to reach them twice a year through special permits and coordination. The coordinator also stated that the colonists already picked many olive trees in the area, and stolen the produce, especially since they have unrestricted access to the orchards.
http://imemc.org/article/israeli-colonists-flood-dozens-of-palestinian-olive-trees-with-sewage/
Settler violence on the rise as olive harvest begins in West Bank
+972 mag 20 Oct by Orly Noy — Since the beginning of the olive harvest two weeks ago, Israeli human rights organizations have documented 10 cases of settler violence and theft against Palestinians and their property. For now, it seems like the police are doing their job — The olive harvest season, which began two weeks ago across Israel-Palestine, is one of the most heated seasons in the year for Palestinians in the occupied territories, especially for those living in Area C, under complete Israeli military control. Nearly every plot of Palestinian land designated for farming in the West Bank is located in this area, yet 60 percent of that very land now belongs to settlement local and regional councils. Israel’s multifarious practices of dispossession, from land expropriations to declaring whole swaths of private property closed military zones, have restricted Palestinian access to their agricultural land. In many places, they are allowed access only during seasons when they plow the land, or during the olive harvest. The success of the harvest has a direct effect on their livelihood. Often times, land that has been abandoned by Palestinians due to settler violence is later taken over by those very same settlers.
Every year at this time, like clockwork, Israeli settlers head out to Palestinian olive groves to sow destruction and violence. Since 2005, Israeli anti-occupation NGO Yesh Din has documented around 280 police cases relating to attacks on olive trees. According to the organization, only six of those cases ended in indictments. Over 93 percent of them were closed due to police failure to find the criminals or to gather the proper evidence to put the suspects on trial. Often times, the army simply “takes care” of conflagrations between settlers and Palestinians by preventing the Palestinians from accessing their agricultural land, a practice that has been roundly criticized by Israel’s High Court of Justice.
Thus, reports over the past few weeks of cases in which Israeli security forces actually caught settlers as they were harassing Palestinian farmers are surprising in just how out of the ordinary they are. Under normal circumstances, a news report on police catching criminals in the act as they attack innocent people would be a case of dog bites man. In the reality of occupation, this is clearly a case of man bites dog. Last Sunday, for instance, settlers were caught stealing olives from a Palestinian grove adjacent the village of Al-Jinya, not far from the settlement outpost of Zait Ra’anan. Zacharia Sada, who coordinates Israeli NGO Rabbis for Human Rights’ field workers, witnessed the incident and directed the security forces to the area where they caught the suspects….
https://972mag.com/settler-violence-on-the-rise-as-olive-harvest-begins-in-west-bank/130324/
Israeli police say Palestinian must prove he owns land from which his olives were stolen
Haaretzx 24 Oct by Yotam Berger — For two weeks, the Judea and Samaria District Police has been holding the olives from 200 trees owned by a Palestinian in the northern West Bank that are suspected of being stolen by a settler from the Adei Ad outpost. Two days ago, the Palestinian was informed by the police that the theft is being investigated and that a settler from the outpost has been arrested on suspicion of the theft. A source says the olives were seized at the time of the arrest. The police asked the Jerusalem District Court to extend the suspects’ detention, but the judge released him with restrictive conditions, including an order that he stay away from the area of the olive orchard. An officer with the Binyamin District investigations and intelligence departments says the olive crop “is being held by the Israel Police.” The police document given to the Palestinian says he must present “land ownership or custody documents” to retrieve the crop, and that “the sooner he can bring these documents, the sooner the seized crop will be released to him.”….
https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.818703
Health condition of Palestinian shot by Israeli forces improves
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 23 Oct — The health condition of a Palestinian detainee who was shot by Israeli forces last week has improved and been declared as stable, according to the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs. Lawyer of the committee, Karim Ajweh, said in a statement that Ahmed Nafez al-Masri was being held at the Hadassah hospital in Jerusalem and had regained consciousness. Al-Masri was shot and critically injured by Israeli forces last week at the Gush Etzion Junction south of Bethlehem in the southern occupied West Bank after he allegedly attempted to commit a stabbing attack against soldiers stationed in the area. According to Ajweh, al-Masri, who underwent two surgeries, was still being held in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Meanwhile, Israel’s Ofer military court had decided on Sunday to extend al-Masri’s detention in absence by 12 days. A number of Palestinians have been arrested, shot, or killed by Israeli forces for allegedly attempting to carry out attacks or being in possession of a knife at the Gush Etzion junction…. [Ma‘an on 18 Oct: witnesses told Ma‘an that the youth, who remained unidentified, was crossing the street running to catch another bus that was departing when Israeli soldiers opened fire at him.]
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779366
Israeli settlers throw stones at Palestinian homes in Hebron-area village
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 24 Oct — Israeli settlers reportedly attacked Palestinians in the southern occupied West Bank village of Umm al-Kheir village, located in the Hebron district, on Monday afternoon. Coordinator of popular committees in the southern West Bank Ratib al-Jabour told Ma’an that physical altercations erupted between Israeli settlers from the nearby illegal Karmel settlement and Palestinians from Umm al-Kheir, after the settlers threw rocks at homes in the village. According to al-Jabour, the Israeli army arrived in the area and began firing flares and sound bombs to disperse the crowds.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779370
Palestinian drops large rock on head of boy, 12, in Hebron
[with video] JERUSALEM (JTA) 22 Oct — A Palestinian man threw a large rock at a young Israeli boy playing in a spring in the West Bank city of Hebron, knocking him unconscious, according to the army. The 12-year-old boy on Saturday then fell into Abraham’s Well spring, located in the flashpoint city’s Jewish enclave. His friends pulled him out of the water and called for help. He was taken to Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem in Jerusalem, where he required 10 stitches in his scalp. The IDF spokesman said a Palestinian man had thrown the rock and security forces were searching the area for suspects. “Such violence is nothing less than terror,” he said. Footage from an army security camera appears to show the man hurling the rock into the spring from above before running away. The video is being shared on social media.
https://www.jta.org/2017/10/22/news-opinion/israel-middle-east/palestinian-drops-large-rock-on-head-of-boy-12-in-hebron
Opinion: For the women under occupation, it’s time for #AnaKaman (#MeToo) / Gideon Levy
Haaretz 22 Oct — The next global social media campaign should bring the stories of Palestinian women who live (or were killed) under the Israeli occupation — …The next campaign should also address respect for women and their bodies, their fates, their rights, their life and death. It must start in Israel and spread throughout the world. A single Weinstein will not ignite this campaign. It will accuse an entire state. And the testimonies will not come only from the rich and famous. They will come from female victims who never dreamed of Hollywood, or even of the beach in Tel Aviv. The next campaign should be called #وأنا كمان, ana kaman, “me too” in Arabic. Let’s see how the world responds to this campaign, especially Israelis – the same Israelis who took part in #MeToo and are now tut-tutting in the streets of Ramat Hasharon and Ramat Aviv over the painful testimonies of Limor Livnat, Meital Dohan, Orna Banai and Yael Abecassis. #AnaKaman will bring the testimonies of Palestinian women who live (or were killed) under the Israeli occupation. We provide the first ones below. All are from this summer, a relatively quiet one in the history of the occupation.
“Me too,” Zeinab Salhi of the Deheisheh refugee camp will write despairingly. She is 52, a single mother who for years cleaned the homes of Jews in Jerusalem, until illness forced her to quit. She lives in the West Bank refugee camp in nearly indescribable poverty and neglect. Her live-in partner, an Israeli Jew from Jerusalem, suffers from cancer. One night this summer, she watched as soldiers fired seven bullets into her son Raad Salhi, 22, as he tried to flee. As he lay dying in Hadassah University Hospital, Ein Karem, she sought to see him one last time, but soldiers stationed outside his room chased her away. A week after Raad was shot, soldiers came and arrested his brother Mohammed, again in the middle of the night and with the brutality of those who snatch people from their bed. Raad died a few days later; his mother never had a chance to say goodbye…
“Me too,” the Israeli voice of Raba Abu al-Kiyan will chime in. For nearly a year, she has been living in a tent with her 10 children, after Israeli police killed her husband Yakub, a teacher, while demolishing their home in Umm al-Hiran in order to build the Jewish town of Hiran there….
https://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.818426
Israeli forces detain 66 Palestinians, majority teenagers, in overnight raids
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 23 Oct — Israeli detained at least 66 Palestinians during overnight raids Monday in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, according to Palestinian and Israeli sources …
West Bank — The Israeli army said in a statement that 15 Palestinian youths were detained from the West Bank for “security purposes.” The army said that a gun was found during search and detentions raids in Hebron city, while another weapon was found in the Beit Fajjar village in Bethlehem in the southern West Bank.
East Jerusalem — Israeli police forces raided the neighborhood of al-‘Issawiya overnight and detained 51 Palestinians after searching dozens of homes in the area. Official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency reported that a large number of police forces stormed the neighborhood around midnight from all entrances “causing panic and fear among residents” while a helicopter flew overhead. Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samri said in a statement that 51 Palestinians were detained for “disrupting order” recently in al-‘Issawiya, including throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at security vehicles. Muhammad Abu al-Hummus, a member of the local follow-up committee in al-‘Issawiya, told Ma‘an that Israeli forces delivered interrogation summons to several Palestinians in the area — including former prisoner Shirin al-‘Issawi — and that forces raided the neighborhood again Monday morning while students were on their way to school. Lawyer of the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affair Muhammad Mahmoud, who visited detainees at different detention centers, said that he followed up on the cases of 27 of the detainees, who he said were all teenagers between the ages of 15 to 18. He identified them as Muhammad Ibrahim Mustafa, Adam Khalid Abu Shammaleh….
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779362
Israeli forces detain 19 Palestinians in overnight West Bank raids
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 24 Oct — Israeli forces detained at least 19 Palestinians during overnight raids between Monday night and Tuesday morning in the occupied West Bank, according to Israeli and Palestinian sources. The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society reported that 16 Palestinians were detained, saying that five were detained in the Qabatiya town, near Jenin, five others in Bethlehem, two from Hebron, two from Qalqiliya, and one from Ramallah. Locals in the Hebron-area village of Beit ‘Awwa, located in the southern West Bank, told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained Muhammad Yasser Abd al-Razeq Masalma after raiding his, and several other homes in the area. Israeli forces allegedly confiscated 80,000 shekels ($22,851) from Masalma’s home claiming the money was given to support “illegal” Palestinian groups. An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma‘an that 19 Palestinians were detained in the West Bank, giving no details regarding the locations of the arrests.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779371
Israel arrests Palestinian because Facebook translated ‘good morning’ to ‘attack them’
Haaretz 22 Oct by Yotam Berger — The Israel Police mistakenly arrested a Palestinian worker last week because they relied on automatic translation software to translate a post he wrote on his Facebook page. The Palestinian was arrested after writing “good morning,” which was misinterpreted; no Arabic-speaking police officer read the post before the man’s arrest. Last week, the man posted on his Facebook page a picture from the construction site where he works in the West Bank settlement of Beitar Ilit near Jerusalem. In the picture he is leaning against a bulldozer alongside the caption: “Good morning” in Arabic. The automatic translation service offered by Facebook uses its own proprietary algorithms. It translated “good morning” as “attack them” in Hebrew and “hurt them” in English. Arabic speakers explained that English transliteration used by Facebook is not an actual word in Arabic but could look like the verb “to hurt” – even though any Arabic speaker could clearly see the transliteration did not match the translation. But because of the mistaken translation the Judea and Samaria District police were notified of the post. The police officers were suspicious because the translation accompanied a picture of the man alongside the bulldozer, a vehicle that has been used in the past in hit-and-run terrorist attacks. They suspected he was threatening to carry out such an attack and the police arrested him. After he was questioned, the police realized their mistake and released the man after a few hours….
https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.818437
Palestinian minors arrested by Israel ‘suffer abuse’
Al Jazeera 25 Oct by Linah Alsaafin — Mohammed, 14, was with his friends riding horses in a park in Jerusalem’s Old City when the Yassam, a special patrol unit of the Israeli police, arrived at the scene. Sound grenades were fired at the teenagers. One landed near Mohammed’s feet. He picked up a rock and threw it in the direction of the notorious riot police, whose excessive force against Palestinians has been well-documented. Unbeknownst to Mohammed, Yassam had been surveilling him and had also taken photos. Later, on his way back home, the boy was arrested by Israeli security forces on Saladin Street. He was handcuffed, taken to an interrogation centre, and was questioned without the presence of a lawyer or his parents. Little did he know then, in mid-September 2016, that his ordeal through the Israeli military court system had just begun. “They called me after he was interrogated,” Salwa, Mohammed’s mother, told Al Jazeera. “He spent the night in jail and was due in court the next day. He was imprisoned for a further two weeks and in that period he had another court appearance that was postponed four or five times.” More than a year later, Mohammed is still under house arrest. He is one of the hundreds of Palestinian minors in the occupied territories that are arrested by Israel on a yearly basis. The most common charge leveled against them is stone throwing, which under Israeli military law can carry a sentence of up to 20 years in jail.
A new report published on Wednesday by Israeli rights groups HaMoked and B’tselem details the alleged violations committed by Israeli forces against Palestinian minors. The study, titled “Unprotected: The detention of Palestinian Teenagers in East Jerusalem”, includes 60 affidavits collected from Palestinian teenagers who were arrested by Israel between May 2015 and October 2016. “What we are dealing with is not a few individual rogue interrogators or prison guards who defy regulations,” says the report. “Rather it is a case of a plain and clear policy followed by the various authorities: the police who carry out the arrests; the IPS (Israel Prison Service) which keeps the boys incarcerated in harsh conditions; and finally, the courts, where judges virtually automatically extend the boys’ custodial remand.”….
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/10/palestinian-minors-arrested-israel-suffer-abuse-171024215105404.html
Prisoners / Sentencing
Palestinian hunger striker’s health ‘deteriorating’
Al Jazeera 22 Oct by Farah Najjar — A Palestinian prisoner’s health is “rapidly deteriorating” as he enters the 12th day of his hunger strike, according to his father. Hassan Showka, from the occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem, was arrested on September 29 without charges for a second consecutive time. He is being held in administrative detention at Israel’s Ofer prison. “He does not have family visitation rights, so we can’t see him, but we’re in touch with his lawyer, who is able to see him every now and then,” his father, 57-year-old Hassanein Showka, told Al Jazeera. Hassan, 29, has been denied the right to see his family members, including his toddler.
Administrative detention
 is a legal procedure that allows Israel to imprison Palestinians from the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip without charge or trial, for renewable periods of up to six months. Israeli authorities have been using this procedure [which originated under British rule] for more than 50 years, based on secret evidence. “The lawyers who manage to see him [Hassan] depict to us his current state, but most times we’re unsure whether the picture depicted is 100 percent accurate – usually they want to spare us the pain,” Hassanein said.  “They don’t want us to worry about him, but we know he’s unwell.” Earlier this year, Hassan went on another hunger strike to protest his previous term of administrative detention, his father said. He was arrested again days later.
Today, there are some 600 administrative detainees in Israeli prisons, 16 of whom are children. “Administrative detention is a real problem. We’ve been trying to understand why, what’s the purpose behind his arrest, but we’re still left wondering and haven’t been provided with a valid explanation,” Hassanein said. “From the day they took him and until this very moment, we’re all confused … This is our son and he’s precious to us.” Hunger strikes have traditionally been used as a way to pressure Israel into improving living conditions in prisons and to push for basic rights, including visitations. On Monday, Mousa Soufan, a prisoner diagnosed with advanced lung cancer, was planning to start an open-ended hunger strike to protest medical neglect in Israeli prisons, local media reported….
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/10/palestinian-hunger-striker-health-deteriorating-171022122940413.html
Jerusalemite Palestinian sentenced to 16 years in prison for stabbing attempt
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 23 Oct — An Israeli court on Monday sentenced a Palestinian to 16 years in prison over an attempted stabbing attack two years ago, according to Israeli media. Israeli news website Ynet reported that the Jerusalem District Court sentenced Bahaa Eweisat, 22, a resident of the Jabal al-Mukabbir neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem, to 16 years in prison for attempted murder and illegal possession of a knife. In October 2015, Eweisat was allegedly waiting with a knife in the Nof Zion settlement to carry out a stabbing attack when a police officer asked him to identify himself. According to Ynet, Ewisat refused and tried to stab the policeman.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779368
Gaza
Three Palestinians found after going missing from Egypt-Gaza tunnel
AFP 23 Oct — Three Palestinians who went missing from a tunnel between Egypt and the Gaza Strip in mysterious circumstances on Monday have been located, authorities in the Islamist Hamas-run territory said, after indications they had been kidnapped. “The three Palestinian workers who disappeared this morning on the Palestinian-Egyptian border have been found and returned safely,” Hamas interior ministry spokesman Iyad al-Bozom said in a statement, providing no further details. A security source told AFP “the three were kidnapped by mistake by gunmen probably belonging to an extremist Salafist group but were returned because they were not the target.” The three men are currently under investigation at the interior ministry in Gaza, the source said. One witness told AFP earlier that a group of masked gunmen snatched the three and took them across the border into Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. The account of the witness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, was not confirmed by authorities … In August, a suicide bomber killed a Hamas guard along Gaza’s border with Egypt in what was described as a rare Islamist attack against the Palestinian group. In 2015, gunmen seized four Hamas members from a bus bound for Cairo from the Gaza Strip in the Sinai near the border. [from Ma‘an: Sources from Gaza told Ma‘an that the three workers are from the al-Shujaiyya neighborhood in eastern Gaza City, and were identified as Hasan Jamal Abu al-Beid, Rami Jaber Nasrallah and Khalid Ziad Abu Asr.]
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-5008557/Three-Palestinians-missing-Egypt-Gaza-tunnel.html
Conjoined twins born in Gaza ‘will need life-saving medical treatment abroad’
AFP 23 Oct — Conjoined twins born in Gaza on Sunday need to leave the blockaded Palestinian enclave for treatment crucial to their survival, their doctor and a family member said. “A woman gave birth this morning to Siamese twins joined at the stomach and pelvis,” Allam Abu Hamda, head of the neonatal unit at Gaza’s Shifa Hospital, told AFP. Abu Hamda said the girls’ complicated condition “cannot be dealt with in the Gaza Strip, so we hope they will be transferred abroad for a separation.” An uncle who preferred not to be named said: “We hope they can leave to do what is necessary for their rare conditions.” Conjoined twins that share key organs have low chances of survival. The twins, whose condition Abu Hamda said was stable, have one shared leg, but separate hearts and lungs. Conjoined twins born in Gaza in November 2016 later died.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/10/23/conjoined-twins-born-gaza-will-need-life-saving-medical-treatment/
Palestinian families from Gaza visit relatives in Israeli prison
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 23 Oct — Families of Palestinian prisoners from the Gaza Strip were able to visit their imprisoned relatives in the Ramon prison in the Israel’s southern Negev desert on Monday morning. Spokesperson of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Amani al-Naouq said in a statement that 20 Palestinians, six of whom were under the age of 16, left the besieged Gaza strip through the Erez crossing to visit 13 imprisoned relatives. There are currently 310 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip jailed in Israeli prisons among some 6,000 Palestinian prisoners. The International Committee of the Red Cross organizes weekly visits on Mondays for Gazan families to their imprisoned relatives.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779365

Israeli forces open fire at Gaza fishermen
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 23 Oct — Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats early Monday morning off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip. Witnesses told Ma‘an that Israeli boats opened fire at Gaza fishermen off the coast of al-Sudaniya.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779361
Israeli bulldozers raze lands along Gaza border
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 24 Oct — Several Israeli bulldozers entered into the “buffer zone” in the central Gaza Strip, along the border with Israel, and leveled lands in the area on Tuesday morning. Palestinian security sources told Ma‘an that four Israeli bulldozers entered dozens of meters into the Juhr al-Dik area and razed lands as drones flew overhead.
http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=779369
Palestinian president Abbas begins recruiting Gaza security forces
The Media Line 22 oct by Dima Abumaria — Following the recent unity agreement between Fatah and Hamas, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has initiated a recruitment process in Gaza to resurrect his security forces in the Strip. Fatah Central Committee member Hussein Sheikh revealed that Abbas’ aim is to restructure the security establishment amid calls for Hamas’ disarmament. “We want a security institution committed to the basic laws of the State of Palestine whose doctrine is to protect the national project and the political agenda of the legitimate Palestinian representative,” he stated. According to sources, the PA plans to enlist some 5,000 Gazans between the ages of 18 and 22, who are medically fit and have unblemished records in their previous jobs. When reached by The Media Line, both Palestinian Authority Vice President Mahmoud Al-Aloul and Fatah Central Committee member Tawfik Tirawi—the latter being the head of the PA’s military college in Jericho—refused to comment on the matter. For his part, Abdul Haj Ibrahim, the head of the Department of Political Science at Birzeit University in the West Bank, explained that the new recruits will take the place of some six thousand officers who will be forced into retirement in an effort to both inject fresh blood into Gaza’s new security body as well as to ensure loyalty to Abbas. “It is a strategy to absorb youth into the security forces, in hopes of changing the stereotype in Gaza as well as to create hope and minimize the tensions,” he told The Media Line….http://www.themedialine.org/news/palestinian-president-abbas-begins-recruiting-gaza-security-forces/
Shikun U’Binui wins contract to build Gaza barrier
Globes 23 Oct by Kobi Yeshayahou — The barrier includes an underground wall tens of meters deep with sensors to counter the threat posed by tunnels from Gaza — Shikun u’Binui Holdings Ltd. (TASE: SKBN) Israeli construction unit Solel Boneh has been awarded another contract to build sections of the new barrier surrounding the Gaza strip over the coming year. Solel Boneh successfully bid for the Ministry of Defense tender to build two sections of the Gaza barrier for a combined value of NIS 640 million. The company previously won the first tender for a section of the barrier worth NIS 220 million. There is an overall budget of NIS 3.3 billion for construction of the Gaza barrier, which combines underground and above ground elements. Construction of the barrier, which is meant to provide a comprehensive solution to the threat posed by tunnels dug into Israel from Gaza, will begin in the coming weeks and be completed by the end of 2019. Once construction moves into high gear, 1,000 workers will be employed on the project working 24 hours around the clock at 40 sites. The barrier will include an underground concrete wall tens of meters deep with alert sensors. The administration in charge of the project says that each kilometer of the barrier will cost NIS 40 million with a further NIS 1.5 million per kilometer for an over-ground metal fence.
http://www.globes.co.il/en/article-shikun-ubinui-wins-contract-to-build-gaza-barrier-1001208776
Gaza to get second cellular network, from Qatar
GAZA CITY (AP) 23 Oct — A Palestinian cellular provider said Monday it will soon expand coverage from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip. Palestinian and Qatari officials attended the announcement event at a Gaza City hotel. Wataniya Mobile, a subsidiary of Qatar’s Ooredoo, says it will launch operations in Gaza on Tuesday. Until now, Gaza has only been served by one operator, Jawwal, which was launched in the Palestinian territories in 1999. Wataniya has been operating in the West Bank since 2009. Both companies do not offer 3G internet services, pending a political deal with Israel which controls Palestinian telecommunications frequencies. Wataniya’s expansion was held up by the political divide between the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority and the Islamic militant group Hamas which rules Gaza, and an Israeli-Egyptian blockade of the coastal territory. The two rival Palestinian groups say they are close to reaching a reconciliation agreement that would return Gaza to the control of the Palestinian Authority. Wataniya Mobile CEO Durgham Maraee said hundreds of millions of dollars were spent on building the network in the Palestinian territories. “This was the largest investment that Gaza has known in nearly two decades,” he said. “We hope our success in Gaza would encourage others to invest in Gaza like us.”…..
http://www.latimes.com/sns-bc-ml–gaza-mobile-network-20171023-story.html
Meet the generation of Palestinian division
Al-Monitor 22 Oct by Asmaa al-Ghoul — Back in June 2007, Palestinian Ihab Abu Armanah, 18, was taking his national high school exams, the “tawjihi,” at the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip amid an exchange of fire between Hamas and Fatah gunmen. On June 14, 2007, Hamas took over Gaza, and the geographical division turned into a deep political division that resulted in clashes. Today, a decade later, the two Palestinian rival movements are exerting ambitious efforts to ensure the success of the reconciliation agreement reached on Oct. 12 in Cairo. But for Abu Armanah, the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation, which aims at handing over control of Gaza back to the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority, is meaningless. Like most of his generation in the Gaza Strip, Abu Armanah was unable to pursue his academic studies or achieve his future plans under a 10-year-long siege imposed by Israel and Egypt on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. He told Al-Monitor, “I was worried and terrified. I made sure to finish all of my exams in just half an hour and to run back home.” Abu Armanah, now 28 years old, did not score good results in his tawjihi exam and was unable to achieve his dream of entering the department of English language, literature and simultaneous interpretation at Al-Azhar University. Today he is unemployed, single and living with his parents in a modest home in the Nuseirat refugee camp. “I feel I wasted years of my life. I am not the only one, as all people of my generation feel the same. We grew up in times of division and war, and we were denied joy and stability,” he said … For Gazan blogger Mohammed Sheikh Yusuf, the world has been frozen in time throughout the division years. He was 19 years old when it all started. “In addition to the ensuing social, political, economic and national predicament, the 10-year split has also caused me personal life difficulties. I was arrested several times by Hamas security forces for taking part in protests calling to end the division,” he said. Yusuf is now settled in Qatar, where he says he can plan his life for five years to come, while in Gaza he was unable to make even a five-hour plan….
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/10/palestine-reconciliation-youth-dreams-lost-compensate-gaza.html
Gaza report shows 80% below poverty line, 50% unemployment
JP 22 Oct — A group called The Popular Committee Against the Siege, located in the Gaza Strip, last week issued a report the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, concurrent with the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. According to the report, the humanitarian situation of the Gaza Strip after more than ten years of an Israeli blockade by land, sea and air, three wars with Israel, in 2008, 2012, and the effects of the ongoing conflict between the PLO and Hamas, have led to a catastrophic situation – as evidenced by the recent UN warnings that by 2020 life in Gaza would become impossible. The report claims that during the decade of the blockade there has been an increase of half a million civilians in Gaza, without any improvement in services. Instead, poverty, unemployment and the decline in purchasing power have increased dramatically:
80% of the population is below the poverty line.
50% unemployment rate.
60% unemployment rate among youth and young adults.
The average income is down to $2 a day per person.
40% of the children suffer from malnutrition and anemia.
There are 15,500 orphans living in Gaza, who suffer from poor living conditions.
50,000 residents suffer from disabilities, from birth or from war injuries.
30% of the needed medicine is unavailable.
45% of medical consumables are unavailable.
13,000 cancer patients go without medical infusions.
Thousands of civilians, especially the poor, are chronically ill.
95% of the water is not drinkable
(Continued)
http://www.jewishpress.com/news/eye-on-palestine/palestinian-authority/gaza-report-shows-80-below-poverty-line-50-unemployment/2017/10/22/


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