Archive for October, 2016

Massacres, BDS, and more

Mazin Qumsiyeh
Opinion

Photo: http://justsayin.online/tag/massacre/

Photo: http://justsayin.online/tag/massacre/

I just returned to Palestine from the Basque Country, a European country that is partly under French and partly under Spanish rule (sort of like the Kurdish region). It was great to see the mountains and to see open roads without checkpoints (it was not always like this as the fight for Basque independence meant much similar conditions just a few years ago before political agreements were reached).

I return willingly to a jailed community under an apartheid system and daily assaults (home demolitions, displacement, judaization). It is exactly where we find ourselves most needed and most alive. The staff and volunteers at the Palestine Museum of Natural History – Bethlehem University have done an excellent job in my absence of one week. My luggage hopefully will catch up with me and it has many books I acquired for the museum. Please join us and help (donating time and/or money would be good).

Now for some collected items related to human rights:

Today is the anniversary of Duwaima massacre (29 Octber 1948), one of over 40 massacres committed by the Zionist colonial forces to drive native Palestinians out of our country. Read more »

Israel breaching Palestine’s right to development

Press Release – UNHCHR

NEW YORK / GENEVA (28 October 2016) Palestines right to development is being denied by Israel, creating an environment plagued by poverty, epic unemployment and economic stagnation, according to a new report from a United Nations human rights … Read more »

Abbas, Hamas leadership meet in Doha

Hamas
Press Release

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Chairman of Hamas’s political bureau Khaled Meshaal and deputy chairman Ismail Haniya convened on Thursday evening with the Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas in a meeting in Doha hosted by Qatar’s foreign minister Mohamed Al Thani.

The meeting discussed the dangers threatening the Palestinian cause and national priorities during the current critical phase as well as ways to achieve reconciliation and end the Palestinian rift.

The need to implement the previous reconciliation agreements signed in Cairo, Doha and Gaza’s Beach refugee camp was underlined by Hamas leaders who also stress the importance of national partnership and urged for holding the elections and forming a unity government.

They also called for formulating a program to confront the Israeli colonial occupation and its transgressions as a united front.

Hamas also hailed Qatari efforts to support the Palestinian people and break the siege imposed on Gaza, and expressed appreciation for Qatari endeavors to achieve Palestinian reconciliation.

PFLP responds positively to initiative by Islamic Jihad for national unity

PFLP
Press Release

Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza City, October 2016

Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza City, October 2016

In response to the 10-point initiative presented by the General Secretary of the Islamic Jihad Movement, Ramadan Shallah, at the anniversary event of the movement, Comrade Kayed al-Ghoul, of the Political Bureau of the PFLP, said that the initiative intersects to a large degree with the positions of the Front and several initiatives brought forward.

Al-Ghoul expressed his support for the initiative of the Islamic Jihad Movement in an effort to rebuild Palestinian unity on the basis of a national liberation strategy suitable to the phase in which we live, emphasizing that the Palestinian people are engaged in a comprehensive conflict with the Zionist enemy at all levels and that there is a necessity for the full rehabilitation of all Palestinian national rights through cutting the path of Oslo and all related agreements, while supporting the steadfastness of the Palestinian masses.

He urged the movement to continue its efforts to follow up with all forces for a comprehensive national dialogue for this initiative.

Ramadan Shallah announced the 10-point initiative for an escape from the Palestinian predicament, which includes the following: Read more »

UNRWA Condemns Killing of Four Palestine Refugees, calls for Full Humanitarian Access to Khan Eshieh Refugee Camp in Syria

Press Statement
UNRWA Spokesperson Chris Gunness

Khan Eshieh Camp, June 2016 (UN File Photo)

Khan Eshieh Camp, June 2016 (UN File Photo)

Four Palestine refugees were killed on the night of 18 October as they attempted to leave the Khan Eshieh Palestine refugee camp, south of the Syrian capital, Damascus, to which access has been highly restricted. Nofeh Mohammed Jarad, who was in her 60’s, her daughter Ibaa Saeed al-Nader, 22, their driver and a one-year old baby were all killed when their vehicle was shelled around 10 p.m. The mother of the baby, a Syrian citizen, also died in the incident.

UNRWA condemns this attack and the killing and wounding of all civilians including Palestine refugees. It calls on those responsible to abide by their obligations under international humanitarian law and demands that the parties to the conflict do their utmost to protect civilian life in accordance with international law. Read more »

Neither War Nor Peace: Shimon Peres, Israel and History

Article – Binoy Kampmark

We learned from the British, explained the late Shimon Peres in The Guardian in 2011, what democracy means, and how it behaves in times of danger, war and terror. We thank Britain for introducing freedom and respect of human rights both … Read more »

Was The Women’s Boat to Gaza an Existential Threat?

Article – Ramzy Baroud

The Convoluted Discourse: Was The Womens Boat to Gaza an Existential Threat? By Ramzy Baroud Read more »

PFLP condemns occupation piracy of Women’s Boat to Gaza

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Press Release

womboat (400 x 266)

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine expressed its strongest condemnation of the Zionist occupation forces for their attack on the Women’s Boat to Gaza, the Zaytouna, blocking it from reaching the Gaza Strip on a journey of solidarity and to break the siege of occupation.

The Front denounced this Zionist piracy, reaffirming the Zionist regime’s disregard for international conventions and treaties, relying instead on tyranny, terror and the support and protection provided by US imperialism and its allies in international forums.

The Front expressed its salutes and appreciation to the women on board the hijacked ship, saluting their determination to break the siege on the Gaza Strip despite the risk, noting that this mission enjoys the strong support of the Palestinian people and is yet more motivation to continue to work to expand international solidarity campaigns and boycott the Zionist state.

PFLP: Jerusalem operation is a natural response to the occupation, reflects continuing intifada

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Press Release

Musbah AubSbeih

Musbah AubSbeih

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said that Sunday’s resistance operation in occupied Jerusalem comes in the context of the ongoing intifada, and is a natural response to the occupation and the attacks of the settlers, and confirms once more the Palestinian position and identity of Jerusalem against the schemes of the occupier to erase Palestinian existence with Judaization plans. The Front expressed its salutes to the martyr Musbah Abu Sbeih, shot by occupation forces during his operation.

The operation expresses that there remains an open conflict between the Palestinian people and the Zionist occupier throughout the land of Palestine, and that all of the collective punishment, mass arrests and brutal attacks will not stop the continuing Palestinian resistance.

The Front emphasizes the importance of sustaining and supporting the ongoing intifada through Palestinian national unity around a program of resistance and strengthening popular organization and struggle toward achieving liberation for the Palestinian people.

Israeli women betray their sisters, intercept Women’s Boat to Gaza

Julie Webb-Pullman

WBG_logo_1-1024x1024 (400 x 400)

Israeli women soldiers led the attack in international waters on the Women’s Boat to Gaza, Zaytouna-Oliva, on Wednesday evening Gaza time, and kidnapped the 13 international women on board.

The 13 freedom sailors included New Zealand Member of Parliament Marama Davidson, 1976 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mairead Maguire from Ireland, and retired US army colonel Ann Wright.

There has been no communication from the women since their capture, but the Israeli media reported the following statement from the Israeli occupation forces:

“In accordance with government directives and after exhausting all diplomatic channels, the Israeli Navy redirected the vessel in order to prevent breach of the lawful maritime blockade.”

Two hours ago the Israeli Times said the Zaytouna-Oliva was intercepted 65 kilometres from the Gaza Coast, and was now heading slowly toward Ashdod.

In the Interim Oslo Agreement, signed by Israel and the PLO, boats from Gaza are permitted to go twenty nautical miles (about thirty-seven kilometers) from the coastline, meaning the Zaytoun-Oliva was clearly still in international waters when it was pirated.

Prior to this latest breach of international law by Israel on the high seas, Israeli airstrikes and tank fire pounded the Gaza Strip, from a training ground in Khan Yunis in southern Gaza to naval police headquarters in Beit Lahiya in the north, and several Gaza City suburbs in between.

It is precisely this sort of wanton destruction and the humanitarian catastrophe of an illegal siege that the women’s boat was seeking to highlight, and break.

Women around the world are watching and waiting to see whether the women are safe.

Israel issues orders to intercept all-women Gaza-bound flotilla

Palestine Information Centre

wbg (400 x 211)

The Israeli occupation navy has received instructions to intercept women’s boat to Gaza and arrest onboard activists, Israeli daily Maariv reported Sunday.

The Israeli naval forces have received orders to intercept al-Zaytouna ship and arrest activists as soon as they reach Gaza shores. The boat is reportedly to be towed to the Ashdod Harbor wile female activists will be deported to their mother countries after they sign pledges to never return.

Zaytouna ship is expected to reach Gaza shores in the next three days following a stopover in the Greek Island of Crete to fix a sudden breakdown.

Amal and Zaytouna, a flotilla of two boats with all-women crews and passengers, set sail from Barcelona en route to besieged Gaza in another maritime attempt to break Israel’s illegitimate blockade on the Palestinian coastal enclave.

There are 11 women in each boat, including Malin Bjork, a European Parliament member, Marama Davideon, a New ZEaland member of Parliament, Mairead Maguire, the Nobel peace laureate from Northern Ireland, Fouzia Hassan, a doctor from Malaysia, and retired US army colonel Ann Wright.

The Gaza Strip is a place where around two million Palestinians have been locked up for nearly a decade in what many describe as the “world’s largest open air prison.”

Gaza’s political parties welcome the Women’s Boats to Gaza

Women leaders from three of Gaza’s leading political parties welcome the women in the Women’s Boats to Gaza arriving shortly in an attempt to break the Israeli siege of Gaza. Rajaa Al Halabi from Hamas, Mariam Abu Dagga from PFLP and Amal Hamad from Fatah ask women all over the world to continue to stand in solidarity with Palestinian women – and to send more boats.

They emphasise the tragic consequences of the now ten-year Israeli siege on Gaza’s women, and demand that international law be respected, and the siege lifted.