Archive for December, 2014

Israel detained 1,266 Palestinian children in 2014

Source: Middle East Monitor

MEMO File Photo

MEMO File Photo

Israeli forces detained over 1,000 Palestinian children in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem over the course of this year, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said Tuesday.

Abdel-Nasser Farawna, who heads the PLO’s authority for prisoners’ affairs, said that Israel had detained 1,266 Palestinian children below the age of 15 in the occupied territories throughout 2014. Read more »

Palestinian Dilly-dallying Must Stop | Jamal Kanj

Opinion – Jamal Kanj

On January first, it will be 50 years since the start of the modern Palestinian revolution; and on the 15th it will be 10 years since Mahmoud Abbas was first, and last, elected as the President of the Palestinian Authority (PA). Read more »

My Glorious Brothers | Uri Avnery, Gush Shalom

Opinion – Uri Avnery

WHEN I was 15 years old and a member of the Irgun underground (by today’s criteria, an honest-to-goodness terrorist organization), we sang “(In the past) we had the heroes / Bar Kochba and the Maccabees / Now we have the new ones / The national youth” … Read more »

About Diplomatic Subversion And Pressure Cookers

Opinion – Adam Keller

For the first time in years opinion polls indicate the possibility of Netanyahus career coming to its end at the March elections, and also on the diplomatic horizon the PM facec increasing storm warnings, with such headlines as: “Europe said ‘yes’ … Read more »

PFLP denounces al-Habbash’s sermon supporting monopolization of Palestinian voice and political direction of PA leadership

PRESS STATEMENT
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine

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The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine denounced the statements of Mahmoud al-Habbash at Friday prayers on December 26, in which he trumpeted the right of the Palestinian Authority and its monopolistic official leadership to pursue its political project with no regard to the vision or input of the Palestinian people and their political parties, a project reflected in the infamous UN Security Council draft that threatens Palestinian fundamental rights. The Front also demanded accountability from PA President Mahmoud Abbas in reference to the statements in al-Habbash’s sermon, which Abbas attended, in the following statement:

“In his sermon at Friday prayers on Friday, December 26, Mahmoud al-Habbash, former minister, Chief Justice of Palestine, and presidential adviser for religious affairs, shouted at the top of his voice from the pulpit that the Palestinian leadership will continue on its current path enthusiastically, with or without the Palestinian factions and political parties. Read more »

UN Commission of Inquiry on Gaza hears moving testimony, seeks access

PRESS RELEASE
United Nations Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict

Children in what was their neighbourhood, Beit Hanoun

Children in what was their neighbourhood, Beit Hanoun

GENEVA ( 23 December 2014) – The United Nations Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict, (established under Resolution A/HRC/RES/S-21/1) continues to do its utmost to obtain access to the Gaza Strip, as well as the West Bank including East Jerusalem, and access to Israel, in order to fulfil its mandate. The Commission has repeatedly sought the cooperation of the Government of Israel to facilitate access so the Commissioners can meet face to face a wide range of victims of alleged violations and also the relevant authorities. In the absence of a response from Israel, the Commission of Inquiry is still actively seeking the cooperation of the Government of Egypt, which has indicated it is ready to facilitate the Commissioners’ travel to Gaza as soon as the security situation permits travel there. Read more »

Ideology or human rights? The right of return

Article – Leslie Bravery

Israel’s Law of Return asserts that all Jews have a ‘right’ of immigration and settlement that has primacy over the rights of the indigenous Palestinian people. This leads increasing numbers of Jews to protest not in my name. Read more »

Israeli F-16s back in Gaza skies, int’l community watches silently

by Julie Webb-Pullman

Israeli F-16s are flying low over Gaza thismorning hot on the heels of Saturday’s airstrikes in Khan Younes, bringing the number of ceasefire violations since August to at least 95.

The propensity for desperate governments such as Netanyahu’s to try to shore up support in upcoming elections by waging war does not justify either the practice, or this latest onslaught by Israeli forces on Gaza, still reeling from last summer’s slaughter. Read more »

Palestinians continue the struggle against the Adei Ad

Press Release – International Solidarity Movement

Hundreds of Palestinian children, women, and men gathered at Turmusaya on Friday December 17th to complete the tree planting began by Palestinian Authority minister Ziad Abu Ein, who was killed by Israeli soldiers on Friday December 10th. Read more »

Switzerland hosts Conference of High Contracting Parties to Fourth Geneva Convention

PRESS RELEASE
Swiss Confederation

Destroyed civilian targets, Gaza City, August 2014.

Destroyed civilian targets, Gaza City, August 2014.

Bern, 17.12.2014 – Representatives of 126 High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention met in Geneva today to adopt by consensus a ten-point Declaration recalling applicable international humanitarian law (IHL) in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East-Jerusalem. The conference was hosted by Switzerland in its capacity as Depositary of the Geneva Conventions.

The ten-point Declaration adopted by consensus by the Conference today reaffirms fundamental principles of international humanitarian law which all High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War must respect. It emphasizes that these principles also apply to non-state actors. The Declaration reaffirms the outcome documents of two previous conferences of 1999 and 2001 and reiterates legal obligations relating to developments in the Occupied Palestinian Territory since 2001. Read more »

PFLP: Draft UN resolution of “French initiative” threatens Palestinian rights

Press Release
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine

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The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine unequivocally rejects the so-called “French Initative” being sponsored at the United Nations by the Jordanian regime as a dangerous threat to Palestinian refugees’ right of return that undermines Palestinian rights in the United Nations under the guise of support for a “Palestinian state,” said a spokesperson for the Front.

The draft resolution before the UN Security Council provides no enforcement mechanisms nor penalties upon the occupying power for its continued flagrant violation of international law, occupation, imposition of apartheid and denial of Palestinian refugees’ fundamental rights for the past 66 years. On the contrary, unlike the resolutions which the Security Council has so eagerly passed against Iraq, Syria, Sudan and other countries, it contains no requirements, mandates or penalties whatsoever but rather presents a false view of the “conflict” as one between equal parties with legitimate rights and interests. Read more »

Gaza Strip: Attacks in the border areas

Press Release – Palestinian Centre For Human Rights

Following disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005, Israel unilaterally and illegally established a so-called buffer zone, an area prohibited to Palestinians along the land and sea borders of the Gaza Strip. The precise area designated by … Read more »

Jailed Palestinian Lawyer Shireen Issawi gets 2014 Alkarama Human Rights Award

PRESS RELEASE
Alkarama

Layla and Tarek Issawi receive 2014 Alkarama Award for Human Rights Defenders on behalf of their daughter, Shireen (From left to right: Mourad Dhina, Tarek Issawi, Norman Finkelstein, Layla Issawi, Ruth-Gaby Vermot-Mangold, Haneen Zoabi)

Layla and Tarek Issawi receive 2014 Alkarama Award for Human Rights Defenders on behalf of their daughter, Shireen (From left to right: Mourad Dhina, Tarek Issawi, Norman Finkelstein, Layla Issawi, Ruth-Gaby Vermot-Mangold, Haneen Zoabi)

Geneva, 13 December 2014

On 11 December 2014, the Alkarama Foundation presented its 6th annual Award for Human Rights Defenders in the Arab world to Palestinian human rights lawyer and activist, Shireen Issawi, in recognition of her courage and bravery in defending Palestinian prisoners and advocating for their rights. The ceremony held at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva focused on the Palestinian people’s strategy of non-violent resistance, a story largely under-reported in the mainstream media.

Speaking at the event were UN and international law experts, Richard Falk, Norman Finkelstein and Alfred de Zayas, as well as Palestinian Member of the Knesset, Haneen Zoabi, and Swiss political personalities, Ruth-Gaby Vermot-Mangold and Guy Mettan. In the absence of Shireen, arrested by the Israeli authorities on 6 March 2014 as part of a crackdown on lawyers defending Palestinian prisoners, the Award was presented to her parents, Layla and Tarek Issawi. Read more »

No More Khirbet Khizehs

Column – David Swanson

On the day in 2014 that I read the new English translation of Khirbet Khizeh, Tom Engelhardt published a blog post rewriting recent news articles on the U.S. Senate’s torture report as a 2019 Senate report on drone murders. Read more »

Israeli soldier kills PA minister at non-violent protest

Press Release – International Solidarity Movement

Yesterday, an Israeli soldier killed Palestinian Authority (PA) Settlment minister, Ziad Abu Ein, at a non-violent demonstration in the village of Turmusaya. Read more »

Jordan submits draft resolution on Palestine to UN Security Council

by Julie Webb-Pullman

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Jordan formally submitted Wednesday a draft resolution to the 15 members of the United Nations Security Council on behalf of Palestinians, calling for an end to Israeli occupation by a negotiation process.

The document calls for borders based on 4 June 1967 lines with possible limited land swaps, Palestinian sovereignty, the return of refugees, a shared capital in Jerusalem, total withdrawal of Israeli forces by the end of 2017, and the addressing of other outstanding issues such as water.

The already-weak language of the resolution is expected to be further watered down before the resolution is voted on.

FULL TEXT OF THE DRAFT RESOLUTION Read more »

FPM welcomes EU General Court annulment of Hamas terrorist status

PRESS STATEMENT
Free Palestine Movement

Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, founder and leader of Hamas assassinated by Israel outside a Gaza mosque in 2004

Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, founder and leader of Hamas assassinated by Israel outside a Gaza mosque in 2004

The Free Palestine Movement welcomes the decision by the European Union General Court to remove the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) from the EU list of terrorist groups. The court found that placement on the list had been based not on an examination of Hamas’ actions, but on “factual imputations derived from the press and the internet”, implying that Hamas should never have been placed on the list.

We agree. Hamas has never exported its resistance movement internationally. All of its military actions have been directed against the occupiers and oppressors of Palestine. One need not be a supporter of Hamas to recognize the legitimacy of its role in the Palestinian struggle. Read more »

Hamas vs European Council (Case T-400/10) Judgment 17/12/14

Opinion – European Court

In Case T-400/10, Hamas, based in Doha (Qatar), represented by E L. Glock, lawyer, applicant, against Council of the European Union, represented initially by Messrs. B. Driessen and R. Szostak, and subsequently by. Driessen and G. tienne, acting … Read more »

Crushing Flowers: A Report Documenting Human Rights Violations against Palestinian Women During Israel’s “Operation Protective Edge”

PRESS RELEASE
Euro-Mid Observer for Human Rights

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Geneva – Dozens of cases in which civilian women in the Gaza Strip were targeted during Israel’s 50-Day “Operation Protective Edge” are documented in a new report issued today by the nonprofit Euro-Mid Observer for Human Rights. Titled “Crushing Flowers,” the report revealed that 489 females were killed by Israeli forces – 23 percent of the total number of victims. Likewise, 3,537 females (31.5 percent of the number of wounded) were injured during the 8 July-26 August assault.

“It is clear from the evidence we collected, including numerous eyewitness accounts, that no effective method was used by Israeli troops to avoid civilian casualties, including women and girls, and that excessive force was rampant,” said Ramy Abdu, chair of Euro-Mid. “Meanwhile, many women are now dealing with the trauma of losing large numbers of their families.” Read more »

Europe’s symbolic gestures won’t advance Palestinian cause

Article – Alan Hart

At a recent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) conference in Chicago, Israeli peace activist and author Miko Peled said the following: Palestinians are subjected to the inevitable brutality that comes with occupation and they are subject to racist … Read more »

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