VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel News and Articles 25 March 2013: Israel’s government of settlers

25 March 2013 – VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

On day 236 of Hunger Strike, Issawi’s Heart rate drops
IMEMC – Palestinian prisoner Samer al Issawi is near death, according to doctors, after spending 236 days without food to challenge the Israeli policy of ‘administrative detention’, in which Palestinians are imprisoned for extended periods without trial. …

Ma’an News

Israel extends closure of Gaza crossing
3/25/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities kept the Kerem Shalom crossing closed for a fifth day on Monday, after imposing a closure last week following rocket fire from Gaza. Israel closed the Gaza commercial crossing on Thursday after a rocket was fired at southern Israel and reduced the fishing zone around Gaza from 6….

Lawyer: Issawi’s heart could stop at any moment
3/25/2013 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Samer Issawi’s heart could stop at any moment, a lawyer said Monday, as the prisoner’s health continues to deteriorate after 236 days on hunger strike. Israeli doctors told Palestinian Prisoners Society lawyer Fawaz al-Shalawdi that Issawi’s heartbeat had decreased to 28 beats per minute and….

In photos: Villagers in Firing Zone 918 under pressure to leave
3/25/2013 – MaanImages / Charlie Hoyle – The 145 residents of Tuba live in caves and tents in the south Hebron hills, designated as Area C. Villagers rely on herding sheep and goats for their livelihood and have done so long before 1967. The village is located at the edge of Firing Zone 918, an area of 30,000 dunams….

Sheikh: Israel tightening grip on Al-Aqsa Mosque
3/25/2013 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — The director of Al-Aqsa Mosque on Monday warned that Israel is tightening restrictions on the Muslim holy site in Jerusalem. Sheikh Najih Bkeirat told Ma’an that Israeli forces seized the keys to the Moroccan Gate to allow extremist Jewish settlers access the compound. Israel has imposed strict restrictions on…. Related: Settlers enter Al-Aqsa compound, foundation says

Settlers enter Al-Aqsa compound, foundation says
3/25/2013 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — A group of settlers entered the Al-Aqsa mosque compound on Monday and performed religious rituals under heavy Israeli guard, a local foundation said. Settlers accompanied by dozens of Israeli security forces entered the holy site early Monday, the Al-Aqsa Foundation for Waqf and Heritage said. Israeli forces prevented Palestinian students from…. Related: Sheikh: Israel tightening grip on Al-Aqsa Mosque

Israel restores tax transfers to Palestinian Authority
3/25/2013 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israel said on Monday it would restart regular monthly tax transfers to the Palestinian Authority, restoring vital funding days after US President Barack Obama called for confidence-building steps toward peace. Israel began withholding the money – about $100 million in tax revenues it collects each month on behalf of the Authority – in November after….

Israel general suggests buffer zone in a post-Assad Syria
3/25/2013 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — An Israeli general has raised the possibility of creating a buffer zone in Syria, in cooperation with local forces wary of jihadist fighters, should President Bashar Assad be toppled. Major-General Yair Golan said “many hundreds” of radical Islamists were fighting in Syria‘s two-year-old civil war and could “take root” in Israel….

Israel releases Palestinian activists detained in Hebron
3/25/2013 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Israel released three Palestinian activists on Sunday after detaining them during a protest in Hebron last week. Issa Amro, Badi Dweik and Muhammad Zghayer were released on bail by Ofer military court. They were arrested on Wednesday after wearing masks of Martin Luther King and US President Barack Obama and demonstrating….

Israeli forces detain 5 in arrest raids
3/25/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained five people overnight Monday, locals and Israel’s army said. In Nablus, Israeli soldiers arrested Omar Sawalmeh, 21, and Qais Abu Juneid, 22, witnesses told Ma’an. Awad Hassan, 15, was arrested in Ramallah and Muhammad Abu al-Haiaja, 20, was detained in Jenin, locals said. An….

Hamas to aid Egypt inquiry into killing of soldiers
3/25/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The Hamas government in Gaza is ready to cooperate with an Egyptian investigation into the killing of 16 soldiers near the Gaza border last August. Gaza premier Ismail Haniyeh said in a statement Monday that Hamas is committed to non-intervention into Egypt‘s internal affairs and will cooperate with….

Abbas arrives in Doha for Arab League summit
3/25/2013 – DOHA, Qatar (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas arrived Monday in Doha to attend an Arab League summit, where regional leaders are expected to approve financial support to Palestine. Palestine’s delegation updated the president on draft resolutions submitted to the preparatory meeting of member state representatives on Saturday and to the foreign ministers….

Israel, Turkey begin raid compensation talks after apology
3/25/2013 – ANKARA (AFP) — Israel and Turkey began talks Monday on compensation for the families of victims of a deadly 2010 flotilla raid, for which Tel Aviv apologized last week, ending a near three-year diplomatic rift.” Officials delegated by the two sides will work on the compensation issue. We gave the kickstart for it today,” Deputy Prime….

PA security forces arrest 8 Hamas members
3/25/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Palestinian Authority security forces arrested eight Hamas affiliates across the West Bank over the past 24 hours, a statement from the Islamist group said. Hamas members were detained in Hebron, Ramallah and Nablus, the group said. [END]

PA bans fire game in schools after student injured in Nablus
3/25/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — A Palestinian student suffered serious burns while jumping through a fire hoop on Monday, leading the PA education ministry to ban the game in West Bank schools. Sultan al-Safadi, 15, was taking part in the game at his Nablus school as part of an open day. He jumped through the flaming….

Medics: Gaza teen stabbed to death in family dispute
3/25/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A teenager was stabbed to death during a family dispute in Gaza on Monday, a medical official said. Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesman of Gaza’s health ministry, told Ma’an that Muhammad Abed al-Karim Jarbou, 17, was stabbed during an argument in Rafah by a family member and taken….

Hundreds mourn for drowned teen
3/25/2013 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Hundreds of mourners on Monday attended the funeral in Hebron of an 18-year-old who drowned off the Israeli coast last week. Ahmad al-Ghurz, from Dura south of Hebron, drowned off the coast of Herzliya during a day trip with friends on Tuesday.” He told me several times he wanted to….

Man, 65, dies in road accident
3/25/2013 – QALQILIYA (Ma’an) — A 65-year-old man died on Sunday after he was hit by a car in al-Funduq, east of Qalqiliya. Adel Tayyim was run over while crossing the main road between Qalqiliya and Nablus, police said in a statement. [END]

Syrian rebels bombard central Damascus, army hits back
3/25/2013 – BEIRUT (Reuters) — Syrian rebels fired dozens of mortar bombs into central Damascus on Monday, hitting a high-security area within a kilometer (less than a mile) of President Bashar Assad’s residence, residents and a security source said. The military retaliated with artillery fire from Mount Qasioun, overlooking the Syrian capital.”I’ve heard….

Free Syrian Army founder loses leg in Syria blast
3/25/2013 – ANKARA (Reuters) — Colonel Riad al-Asaad, founder of the rebel Free Syrian Army, lost a leg in an explosion in Syria overnight and is in Turkey for treatment, a Turkish official said on Monday. Asaad, who established the FSA in 2011 to fight for the overthrow of President Bashar Assad, was one of the first senior….

Moscow: Russia, China must be part of Syria chemical arms inquiry
3/25/2013 – MOSCOW (Reuters) — Moscow will insist that Russian and Chinese representatives join a United Nations investigation into allegations that chemical weapons were used in Syria last week, a senior Russian diplomat said on Monday. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announced the inquiry on Thursday and made clear it would focus on a rocket attack that killed….

Egypt seizes anti-aircraft ammunition in Sinai
3/25/2013EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) — Egyptian authorities on Monday seized anti-aircraft ammunition in the Sinai peninsula, Ma’an’s correspondent said. Egyptian police received a tip-off about the weapons stash and raided a southern neighborhood of el-Arish. [END]

Egyptian forces raid workshop making counterfeit army uniforms
3/25/2013 – CAIRO (Ma’an) — Egyptian forces on Monday raided a workshop producing counterfeit military uniforms north of Cairo, a military source said. Officers detained three suspects and seized over 1,000 army vests in the raid in the Monufia district, the Egyptian army official told Ma’an. The raid followed a tip-off from locals who….

UN to move some staff out of Syria after shells land near hotel
3/25/2013 – UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) — The United Nations will move about half of its 100 foreign staff members out of Syria after a number of mortar shells fell near their hotel in Damascus, damaging the building and a UN vehicle, the United Nations said on Monday. UN spokesman Martin Nesirky said another 800 local UN staff had….

Egypt court sentences Muslim to death over Copt attack
3/25/2013 – CAIRO (Reuters) — A Muslim man was sentenced to death in Egypt on Monday for killing two people in a dispute with Christians in a southern town, state media said, in a case that underlines sectarian tensions in the country. Incidents of Christian-Muslim violence have increased in Egypt, an overwhelmingly Muslim nation, since the toppling of….

Palestine News Network

Irish Participant on ‘Freedom Flotilla’ Comments on Israel’s “Faux-Apology” to Turkey
Palestine News Network

Bearing the Cross of Colonization: The Via Dolorosa Today
Palestine News Network

Rights Center Condemns Hamas Travel Ban on Fatah Members
Palestine News Network

Weather Forecast: Clear Skies, Warm Temperature
Palestine News Network

PLO’s Ashrawi Expresses Outrage at Denying Access to Jerusalem in Holy Week
Palestine News Network

Hunger Striking Prisoner at Risk of Death Due to Significant Drop in his Heart Beat
Palestine News Network

Israeli Troops Arrest Minor near Ramallah
Palestine News Network

Settlers Storm Al-Aqsa Mosque, Perform Religious Rituals
Palestine News Network

IOF Forces Arrest Palestinians from Balata Refugee Camp, Nablus
Palestine News Network

Watch: Israel Evicts Tent Village Neighborhood, Arrests Four Activists
Palestine News Network

Relief Web

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Relief Web 25 Mar 2013 – Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Country: Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic Key Messages The humanitarian situation has deteriorated significantly due to the prolonged violence. Millions more people now need help, and the…

occupied Palestinian territory: “Yalla Shabab”: European and Palestinian volunteers spread colors in Beit Surik
Relief Web 25 Mar 2013 – Source: European Union Country: occupied Palestinian territory The European Union and Young Entrepreneurs Palestine launched a new youth initiative “Yalla Shabab” that includes several activities in partnership with Palestinian youth in the West Bank and Gaza such as lectures at…

The National

UAE president’s committee approves Dh243m grant for Northern Emirates
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Committee approves education, housing and training grants to improve the quality of life for Northern Emiratis.

Chinese pandas get warm welcome in Toronto
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Canada has welcomed two cute and furry ambassadors – giant pandas on loan from China for 10 years to mark a warming of Sino-Canadian ties.

Cyprus outlook is gloomy – even with bailout
The National 25 Mar 2013 – There is little cheer on the streets in Cyprus, where wealthy depositors stand to lose heavily amid predictions of the demise of the financial sector and soaring unemployment. Michael Theodoulou reports from Nicosia 

Ministry looks into nurseries for UAE government bodies
The National 25 Mar 2013 – No nurseries have been set up at Government bodies with headquarters in Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah despite a cabinet decision to do so, a survey shows.

Emirati students offered ‘unique opportunities’ through scholarships
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Emirati students who study disciplines that are “most required to meet labour market needs” are eligible for Adec scholarships, according to state news agency Wam.

Al Khatib to speak for Syria at Arab League summit, despite resignation
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Heads of state from across the region, including the leaders of Egypt, Sudan, Tunisia and Kuwait, are meeting today amid tight security. Elizabeth Dickinson reports from Doha 

UAE students are steered in the right direction
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Eighty students from five universities take driving challenge for safety.

Bahrain government denies claims over hunger strikers
The National 25 Mar 2013 – Rights organisation claims two jailed activists on hunger strike are also refusing fluids to protest being denied visits from their families.

Ha’aretz

Israel, Turkey begin talks over compensation for flotilla victims’ families
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

In Passover greeting, Obama offers reminder of the challenges ahead
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

Holiday rush felt on roads across country as Israelis head to celebrate Passover
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

Israel to renew transfer of tax funds to Palestinian Authority
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

Former Israeli judge Dan Cohen jailed until end of bribery trial
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

Israeli panel recommends extra maternity leave for women in strenuous jobs
Ha’aretz – 25 Mar 2013

Netanyahu reassures Greeks: Turkey reconciliation won’t come between us
Ha’aretz – 24 Mar 2013

Peres, ex-Knesset Speaker Rivlin top annual Israeli popularity poll
Ha’aretz – 24 Mar 2013

Palestinians add national meaning to Palm Sunday in Jerusalem
Ha’aretz – 24 Mar 2013

Kitniyot Liberation Front wages Facebook war over Passover customs
Ha’aretz – 24 Mar 2013

Jerusalem Post

Egypt sentences Muslim to death over Copt attack
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – In case that underlines sectarian tensions, Muslim man sentenced to death for killing two in dispute with Christians, 

‘Egypt seizes weaponry, arrests terrorists in Sinai’
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Sinai security forces arrest 25 Hamas, Al-Qaida terrorists; police reveal workshop producing fake army uniforms near Cairo. 

Jordan shuts Syria border crossing after clashes
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Main border crossing with Syria closed for the first time since revolt after two days of fighting between troops, rebels. 

Jordan shuts Syria border crossing, UN pulls staff
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Main border crossing with Syria closed for the first time since revolt as UN removes some staff after shell lands near hotel. 

IDF closes West Bank as heavy traffic blocks Israel
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – General closure set to last till end of Passover, IDF says; traffic builds up nationwide as country prepares for Seder night. 

Lapid ‘worried’ over economy, said to cut defense
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – After meetings with advisers, finance minister expresses concern over data, Maariv: PM agrees to scale back defense budget. 

Israeli teen on int’l program disappears in Toronto
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – 16-year-old Israeli informs family, organizers of decision to leave program, stay in Toronto; remainder of group back in Israel.

Netanyahu renews monthly transfer of tax revenues to PA
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Security cabinet backs Netanyahu’s decision to release hold on funds for PA which has been in financial crisis; move comes after Obama visit, Kerry meetings with Netanyahu, Abbas aimed at kick-starting peace process. 

IDF chief to Israelis: It’s safe to visit the Golan
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Following exchange of fire with Syrian army, Gantz says visitors to North have nothing to fear: “I don’t expect an escalation now.” 

Rebels: Free Syria Army chief wounded in explosion
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Syrian opposition sustains additional setback with injury of FSA commander after resignation of National Coalition head. 

’64% of Americans want military action to stop Iran’
Jerusalem Post 25 Mar 2013 – Pew Research poll also finds 49% of Americans sympathize with Israel more than Palestinians, while only 12% said reverse. 

Asian Jewish leaders to meet in China
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Conference in Shanghai in April to focus on how Asian Jews integrate their lives with the culture they live in. 

UN to extend probe of Iran human rights violations
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Human Rights Council rapporteur finds “widespread systemic and systematic violations of human rights” in Iran. 

Cop indicted for hitting social justice protester
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Officer attacked protester without justification; other officers receive disciplinary action for protester treatment. 

Female singer asked to leave J’lem music festival
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Two other female performers also say they were pressured not to perform by haredi audience members in Old City. 

Israel asserts sovereignty in light of Syria chaos
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – It doesn’t matter if it’s the Syrian rebels or Assad forces firing at IDF soldiers, the response will be the same. 

Analysis: Turkish perception versus reality
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Despite Erdogan’s statements that PM’s apology “satisfied Turkish expectations,” Israel only apologized for operational mistakes. 

Analysis: Syrian opposition’s momentum is building
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – Rumors of chemical weapons use, the spillover of violence into Lebanon, Israel, the progress by the opposition on the ground have led the West into a more active policy. 

Rebels: Assad forces fired chemical weapons again
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – For second time, Syrian opposition says Assad forces fired at a rebel army base in the town of Adra; 2 killed, 23 wounded. 

A third of Israelis will owe the bank for Passover
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013 – 1/5 of the study’s respondents said that they are in permanent overdraft and that the holiday will not change that. 

Candidly Speaking: Obama’s visit to Israel
Jerusalem Post 24 Mar 2013Obama irritated many Israelis by referring to Palestinian suffering without relating it to terrorism and incitement, as well as by praising the PA as a genuine peace partner. 

The Guardian

Letters: National hero
The Guardian 25 Mar 2013 – In your interview with Noam Chomsky (22 March) you write that he “has been called, by the Nation, ‘America’s most prominent self-hating Jew’”. In fact the phrase comes from a 1988 review of The Chomsky Reader…

Letters: Middle East peace lies in Obama’s hands
The Guardian 25 Mar 2013 – Peace does indeed lie in your hands, Obama ( Report , 22 March). Obama‘s call on Israel to end the occupation was strong on rhetoric but light on details about how the peace process might move forward. As…

Kosher cigarettes approved for Passover
The Guardian 25 Mar 2013 – Israeli cigarette brands join list of products checked for contact with grains and other forbidden ingredients before holiday Observant Jews in Israel craving a smoke during the week-long Passover holiday that starts at sundown on Monday…

Israel resumes monthly cash transfer to Palestinian Authority
The Guardian 25 Mar 2013 – Payment frozen after UN statehood vote is restarted in step towards resumption of peace talks urged by Barack Obama Israel is to resume the regular transfer of about $100m a month to the Palestinian Authority after…

Israel’s Prisoner X was arrested after bid to recruit double agent – claim
The Guardian 24 Mar 2013 – Joint investigation by Australian and German publications claims Ben Zygier jailed after giving away information about informants The man known as Prisoner X, a dual Israeli-Australian national and reputed Israeli spy who died in a jail…

Abbas government denied Palestinian journalists access to Obama visit
The Guardian 25 Mar 2013 – Eighteen Palestinian journalists were denied access by the Palestinian Authority to cover President Obama‘s visit last week to the West Bank. Authority officials said there were “security reasons” for the failure to give accreditation to the…

Uruknet

Military Resistance 11C14: Ten Years Later
Uruknet

Lawless NYPD Spying on Muslims
Uruknet

Dismantling the myth of peace in Obama’s discourse
Uruknet

Senior churchman says Christians and Muslims living in the Holy Land need military permission to pray
Uruknet

Penalising the Victim: Recent Israeli Measures to Deny Palestinian Civilians’ Right to Reparation
Uruknet

Drones: No Safe Place for Children
Uruknet

U.S. drone attack kills at least 4 in Pakistan
Uruknet

Melodrama in the Service of Empire “Smart Power” and the Afghanistan Novel
Uruknet

Guantanamo Hunger Strike Continues – No Legal Basis for Holding Prisoners (Video )
Uruknet

Creating Terror in North Africa
Uruknet

Daily Star

Arab summit may struggle to paper over Syria opposition rifts
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 An Arab Summit intended to showcase the unity of the Syrian opposition threatens to veer wildly off script and expose deepening factionalism, potentially hurting Western and Arab efforts to end the war.

Russia for consensual solution to end Lebanon Cabinet crisis
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Russia’s Ambassador to Lebanon Alexander Zasypkin encourages politicians to reach a consensual solution to the current government crisis in the country.

UN to move some staff out of Syria
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 The United Nations will move about half of 100 foreign staff members out of Syria after a number of mortar shells fell near their hotel in Damascus.

Gadhafi’s family moved to Oman: minister
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Family members of Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi who had taken refuge in Algeria during the revolution that toppled the long-time dictator have now moved to Oman, Libya’s foreign minister says.

Jordan closes main border crossing with Syria
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Jordan closes its main border crossing with Syria after two days of fighting there between Syrian troops and rebel fighters, Jordan‘s information minister said.

Child rape protesters call on Tunisia minister to quit
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Protesters demand the resignation of Tunisia’s minister for women’s affairs, Sihem Badi, accusing her of defending a children’s nursery where a three-year-old girl was raped.

Protesters end siege of Libyan PM’s office
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 About 200 militiamen and protesters demanding the resignation of Libya’s Prime Minister Ali Zidan have ended their day-long siege of his office.

Residents of Syria’s Aleppo sell belongings to survive
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Ravaged by months of intense war between rebels and regime troops, residents of Aleppo, Syria‘s once-thriving commercial hub, are selling off their personal belongings in order to survive.

Syria slams Arab League for giving seat to rebels
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Damascus slams the Arab League over its decision to hand Syria‘s seat at the organisation to opposition forces, saying it has rewarded “bandits” and “thugs”.

Israeli general suggests creating buffer zone in a post-Assad Syria
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 An Israeli general raises the possibility of creating a buffer zone in Syria, in cooperation with local forces wary of jihadist fighters, should President Bashar Assad be toppled.

Israel restores tax transfers to Palestinian Authority
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Israel says it will restart regular monthly tax transfers to the Palestinian Authority, restoring vital funding days after U.S. President Barack Obama called for confidence-building steps towards peace.

Gunmen wound official in Yemen, tribal dispute likely
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Gunmen wound a senior Yemeni government official and kill his driver when they ambush his car in Sanaa, an attack police say was probably an act of tribal violence.

Saudi Arabia threatens to ban WhatsApp, Viber and Skype: sources
Daily Star 25 Mar 2013 Internet messenger applications such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp face being banned in Saudi Arabia if operators fail to allow authorities in the kingdom to censor them, industry sources say.

YNet News

Rights groups slam new UN arms trade treaty draft
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – ….

Prison for US man in China military secrets case
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – ….

Israel, Turkey begin raid compensation talks after apology
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – ….

France’s Sarkozy: Claim against him is unfounded
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – ….

Libya FM: Gadhafi family granted Oman asylum
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – ….

Remember who we’re dealing with
YNet News, 25 Mar 2013 – Op-ed: Relations between Israel and Turkey began to deteriorate way before Gaza flotilla incident ….

Palestine Information Center

Medical sources warn of Issawi’s “sudden deathâ€
PIC – Medical sources have warned of a serious deterioration of hunger striker Samer Issawi’s health condition that could lead to his “sudden deathâ€.

Israeli calls for Passover Sacrifices at al-Aqsa
PIC – Al-Aqsa Foundation for Endowment and Heritage warned against escalating the Israeli Judaization activities at al-Aqsa mosque and al-Buraq wall particularly on the occasion of Passover Holiday.

Abu Naim: Upsurge in prisoners’ protests in April
PIC – Protests within Israeli jails and outside them would witness an upward surge in the coming month, Tawfik Abu Naim, the head of the league of prisoners and ex-prisoners, said.

Family of Abu Hamdiya appeals for his release
PIC – Family of detained cancer patient Maysara Abu Hamdiya appealed on Monday for his immediate release in view of his worsening health condition.

Protests in Gaza against the reduction of UNRWA services
PIC – Dozens of Palestinian refugees protested in Jabaliya camp against the meeting of Robert Kerner, director of UNRWA operations in Gaza, with representative of Palestinian families. 

Israeli Special Unit storms Negev prison
PIC – Itmar Israeli Unit stormed section 6 in the Negev prison three days ago, a human rights center revealed, pointing out to the lack of communication with the prisoners prevented immediate reporting.

Nafha prisoners accuse jailers of stealing their food
PIC – Palestinian prisoners in Nafha prison called to open an investigation following the repeated theft of food the prisoners bought from the prison canteen..

IOA steals 82% of the Palestinian water under the Oslo accords
PIC – A Palestinian expert on water and environment issues stressed that technical and political problems in the Oslo accords “left the main water sources in Israeli hands..

Argentinian activist on hunger strike in support of Palestinian prisoners
PIC – An Argentinian activist declared an open hunger strike for a whole month in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails.

Haneyya: Ready to cooperate with Egypt in its probe into Rafah attack
PIC – Palestinian premier Ismail Haneyya said his government is ready to cooperate with Egypt, if it asked, in any investigation leading to the killers of its soldiers in the Rafah incident last year.

WAFA

Israel Announces Transfer of PA Money Regularly
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

No Change in January Exports, says Statistics Bureau
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

European and Palestinian Youths Launch Volunteer Initiative
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Rights Center Condemns Hamas Travel Ban on Fatah Members
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Army Arrests Minor near Ramallah
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Physician says Heart Beat of Striking Prisoner Dropped
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Jewish Fanatics Roam Al-Aqsa on Eve of Passover Holiday
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Newspapers Review: Removal of Tent Village Focus of Dailies
WAFA – 25 Mar 2013

Misc

Syria opposition leader resigns
LA Times 25 Mar 2013 – The decision by the charismatic Moaz Khatib highlights how Syrian dissidents have failed to overcome deep differences in their diverse ranks. BEIRUT — The head of a U.S.-backed Syrian opposition coalition resigned his post Sunday, a major blow to a group that the United States…

At War Blog: Still Bleeding, 10 Years Later
New York Times 25 Mar 2013 – In two combat tours in Iraq, Jason Davis learned that in war, there are no days off. 

Israel’s Prisoner X Said to Have Exposed Spies
New York Times 25 Mar 2013 – Two news organizations have reported that the man, Ben Zygier, unintentionally revealed the identities of two top spies for Israel in Lebanon to a man known to be close to Hezbollah. 

Mortars Hit Central Damascus Square; At Least One Killed
New York Times 25 Mar 2013 – Mortars crashed into Umayyad Square in the Syrian capital on Monday, state media reported, in some of the worst shelling in the heart of Damascus since the uprising began. 

Arms Airlift to Syrian Rebels Expands, With C.I.A. Aid
New York Times 24 Mar 2013 – Military help for Syria’s opposition from Arab states and Turkey has grown in recent months, and the C.I.A.’s role has indicated an American willingness to help support lethal aid. 

Shekel soars in pre-Passover trading
Globes Main News – FXCM Israel: The shekel has been boosted by Obama‘s visit to Israel and his backing for the new government.

Ben Zygier’s Betrayal Led to Worst Mossad Debacle in Decades
Tikun Olam – Jason Koutsoukis has published a follow-up piece to Ronen Bergman’s, which I posted about yesterday.  He and Bergman cooperated together on a piece for Der Spiegel which either has just come out or is about to.  Koutsoukis reveals much information not included in the Yediot piece…

NPR can’t stop talking about Jews
Mondoweiss – Last Sunday, March 17, was St. Patrick’s Day, and I turned on my local public-radio outlet just in time to hear how National Public Radio news was celebrating the occasion: with a 4-minute, 28-second segment on something called the Loyal League of Yiddish Sons of Erin ,…

On ‘socially conscious’ dialogue tour, Harvard Radcliffe Orchestra will visit Bethlehem but not ‘occupied territories’
Mondoweiss – The Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra lately announced a tour of the Middle East this summer, as a “socially and politically conscious organization.” The trip description announces gigs in Tel Aviv, Bethlehem, and Jerusalem: The Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra is thrilled to announce its participation in a musical and cultural exchange…

If Debbie Wasserman Schultz wants a Palestinian state, why is she embracing Naftali Bennett?
Mondoweiss – Democratic Reps Engel (l) and Wasserman Schultz embrace rightwinger Naftali Bennett The Obama trip to Israel and Palestine was a good reminder of how circumscribed American mainstream opinion is on Israel. Everyone on the big broadcasts spoke of the two-state solution as good and necessary and…

Obama was ‘absolutely livid’ when Dem platform didn’t say Jerusalem is Israel’s capital — Villaraigosa
Mondoweiss – Last summer you may recall that there was a wonderful floor demonstration at the Democratic Convention when the party sought to reinsert language in the platform calling Jerusalem the capital of Israel (and to reinsert a reference to God into the platform, too). Well, LA Mayor…

Obama put the ball in Israel’s court
Mondoweiss – The following piece is drawn from a phone conversation with an editor at this site . We have to make sense and progress out of what we have before us; and overall, Obama’s trip was positive. I’ll tell you why. As far as the recognition of the…

Israel Mulls Buffer Zone on Border With Syria 
The Foward Breaking News 25 Mar 2013 – An Israeli general has raised the possibility of creating a buffer zone in Syria, in cooperation with local forces wary of jihadist fighters, should President Bashar al-Assad be toppled. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel Resumes Tax Payments to Palestinians 
The Foward Breaking News 25 Mar 2013 – Israel said on Monday it would restart regular monthly tax transfers to the Palestinian Authority, restoring vital funding days after U.S. President Barack Obama called for confidence-building steps toward peace. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egypt: Govt Welcomes Any Consensus Agreement Reached By Syrians – Minister 
allAfrica.com 25 Mar 2013 – [Egypt Online]Egypt welcomes any consensus agreement reached by the Syrians, affirmed Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr.

Egypt: Foreign Ministry – Iranian Tourist Delegations to Visit Egypt Under Certain Rules 
allAfrica.com 25 Mar 2013 – [Egypt Online]Tourist delegations from Iran and Iraq will be allowed to visit Egypt under certain rules, said Assistant Foreign Minister for Consular Affairs Ali el-Ashiri.

Egypt: Morsi to Address 24th Arab Summit in Doha 
allAfrica.com 24 Mar 2013 – [Egypt Online]President Mohamed Morsi will head the Egyptian delegation for the 24th Arab summit scheduled to be held in Doha on March 26-27.

Reem Kelani – One of the most important Arab singers of her generation! 
Rachel Corrie Foundation 25 Mar 2013 – Tuesday, April 9th at 7 PM– Traditions Café and World Folk Art Reem Kelani will provide an authoritative, captivating introduction to music of the Arab uprisings drawn from her experiences in Tahrir Square during the 2011 Egyptian revolution, with short demonstrations of song accompanied by jazz pianist…

Blast wounds Syria rebel commander 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – The man who established and once commanded the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA), Col Riad al-Asaad, is badly hurt by an explosion in the country’s east.

Egypt orders arrests of activists 
BBC 25 Mar 2013Egypt‘s most senior prosecutor orders the arrest of five leading activists after last week’s clashes near the Muslim Brotherhood’s headquarters.

Israel to resume tax payments to PA 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – Israel is to resume the transfer of tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office says.

Summer BDS Institute for Student Leaders 
US Campaign to End the Occupation 25 Mar 2013 – Join our member groups American Friends Service Committee and Jewish Voice for Peace for their 2013 Summer BDS Institute for Student Leaders! WHEN: July 28 to August 1, 2013 WHERE: Upstate New York WHO: All campus activists currently running or hoping to launch BDS campaigns on…

When the King of Jordan Lets His Hair Down 
Al-Akhbar Blogs 25 Mar 2013 – There is much in common between King Hussein of Jordan and his son, although the father was far more shrewd and skilled than his incompetent progeny. Both seem to suffer from a White Man complex: they are keen to prove their loyalty and their civilized nature…

Ten years ago, when the war began 
Al-Akhbar Blogs 25 Mar 2013 – Cairo – Ten years ago, it was a turning point in my life. I was a journalism and international relations student at the American University in Cairo. All the history and political science classes had led me to believe that we humans were evolving; that wars…

Partitioning Syria at the Doha Summit 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 25 Mar 2013 – A fighter fires towards Syrian government forces positions from a building in Saif al-Dawla district in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on 25 March 2013. (Photo: AFP – Bulent Kilic) A fighter fires towards Syrian government forces positions from a building in Saif al-Dawla district…

That Thing that You Do: Comment on Joseph Massad’s “Empire of Sexuality” 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 25 Mar 2013 – Massad’s thesis is simple; in fact, perfect in its simplicity. Empire is a terrible force that wants to penetrate, overpower, and hegemonize. It has a center, a headquarters if you like: the West. It functions with two arms: capitalism (later neoliberal) and Euro-American hegemony. Lama Abu-Odeh…

Turkey and Israel Reconcile Amid PKK Peace Promise 
Al-Akhbar News 25 Mar 2013 – What will a Turkish-Israeli reconciliation mean for Syria? As Israel concedes wrongdoing on the Mavi Marmara, does this signal further alignment on Syria aims? Throw PKK head Abdullah Öcalan’s recent announcement to halt armed activities against Turkey in the mix and the ramifications for Syria are…

Saudi Arabia contemplating ban on Skype, WhatsApp 
Al-Akhbar News 25 Mar 2013 – Saudi Arabia is considering a ban on several communications technology programs, including Skype and WhatsApp, local media reported Sunday. “The Communications and Information Technology Commission has requested companies operating the applications to meet the regulatory requirements to avoid their suspension in the kingdom,” sources told Saudi…

Jailed Bahraini activist on hunger strike for “dignity” 
Al-Akhbar News 25 Mar 2013 – A Bahraini woman runs for cover from tear gas fired by riot police during an anti-government rally on 19 March 2013 in the village of Belad al-Qadeem, in a suburb of Manama. (Photo: AFP – Mohammed al-Shaikh) A jailed Bahraini rights activist who launched an open-ended…

Rebels hit central Damascus, killing one 
Al-Akhbar News 25 Mar 2013 – A firefighter douses a building in Damascus after mortar shells allegedly fell on the residential area of al-Bikhtiyar in this image made available by SANA on 13 March 2013. (Photo: AFP / HO / SANA) Syrian rebels fired dozens of mortar bombs into central Damascus on Monday, hitting…

Iraq: New Social Classes Born Amid Post-Invasion Looting 
Al-Akhbar Politics 24 Mar 2013 – An Iraqi works in the garden of Paradise Square in Baghdad, on 20 March 2013, the tenth anniversary of the US-led invasion of Iraq. (Photo: AFP – Ahmad Al-Rubaye) An Iraqi works in the garden of Paradise Square in Baghdad, on 20 March 2013, the tenth…

Blast wounds Syria rebel commander 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – The man who established and once commanded the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA), Col Riad al-Asaad, is badly hurt by an explosion in the country’s east.

Egypt orders arrests of activists 
BBC 25 Mar 2013Egypt‘s most senior prosecutor orders the arrest of five leading activists after last week’s clashes near the Muslim Brotherhood’s headquarters.

Saudi Arabia ‘threatens Skype ban’ 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – Saudi authorities reportedly threaten to ban encrypted messaging services such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp, causing upset among their many users.

Israel to resume tax payments to PA 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – Israel is to resume the transfer of tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office says.

Oman sultan frees blogger activists 
BBC 25 Mar 2013 – The sultan of the Gulf country of Oman has pardoned and released dozens of on line activists.

Articles


Obama Fails in the Mideast 
Sam Bahour, Ramallah, CounterPunch 3/25/2013
      Militarism Wins the Day…Again
     As I watched President Barack Obama’s helicopter pass above my home, just before landing at the Palestinian Presidential Compound next to Ramallah, I just shook my head in disappointment, first as an American, then as a Palestinian. I thought: “Another U.S. president, on another high fanfare visit, carrying the same, failed political messages.”
     It was difficult to follow Obama’s visit on TV. In normal practice when dignitaries come to town, Israel disrupts the satellite signals that feed our televisions. Nevertheless, I was able to tune in to a single Arabic channel, broadcast from Lebanon, that was unaffected by this.
     Peeling away all the protocols, red carpets, formalities and artificial photo opportunities, I focused on what was coined “the policy speech.” President Obama gave it in Israel at a conference center to an audience of Israeli students. The president crafted a message directly to Israeli citizens, bypassing the right-wing Israeli prime minister who, until today, continues to build illegal, Jewish-only settlements, despite America’s and the world’s disapproval.
     Clear message
     The message to Israel was clear: there is no better ally to Israel than the U.S. He went on and on about how Israel will always be backed by the U.S., no matter what. Militarism won the day.
     To Palestinians, and the majority of the world, that message no longer makes sense. Why support Israel as a military occupier that continues to build Jewish-only settlements?…. more.. e-mail

PHOTOS: Palestinian Christians protest Israeli permit regime during Palm Sunday procession 
By Activestills, photos by Ryan Rodrick Beiler, +972 Magazine 3/25/2013
      During the annual Palm Sunday procession, Palestinian Christians protest permits delayed and denied during the Easter season.
     Whether during Ramadan or Easter, every year, Palestinians with West Bank IDs face challenges entering Jerusalem for religious worship. Despite claims by Israeli authorities of granting more permits and relaxing restrictions, each year thousands of worshipers are denied entry.
     This Easter season, early reports indicate that Palestinian Christian communities from the northern West Bank had to cancel their Palm Sunday celebrations in Jerusalem due to a lack of permits. Parishes from the Bethlehem and Ramallah areas received between 30% and 40% of the permits they requested.
     One individual from the Bethlehem area lamented that while he was granted entry, the rest of his family was turned away at the checkpoint. Such arbitrary policies are typical with Israel’s permitting system, which rarely provides a coherent rationale for who is granted and who is denied, other the than the catch-all excuse of “security reasons”.
     PLO official Hanan Ashrawi was quoted as saying:
     There should not even be a question of needing permits to visit one’s own city…. East Jerusalem is the occupied capital of the Palestinian people and freedom of worship is a basic human right for all of our Christian and Muslim citizens; a right which is being systematically and increasingly denied by a foreign occupying force. The fact that so many Palestinian Christian communities are denied their simple human right to worship freely in their own capital city is unacceptable. more.. e-mail

Something is Rotten in the State of Israel 
Lawrence Davidson, CounterPunch 3/25/2013
      The Holy Lands Get Skunked
     It is said that the devil has about him the smell of fire and brimstone (sulphur). Evil deeds are often described as “most foul.” On the other hand, people who appear, accurately or not, as always innocent are described as “smelling like roses.” There seems, then, to be a long standing, if improbable, association between behavior and smells.
     The Israeli army has recently dedicated itself to demonstrating this association. Back on 6 March 2013 the Middle East Monitor reported that “Israeli forces have sprayed Palestinian homes in the village of Nabi Saleh with Skunk as a punishment for organizing weekly protests against the Apartheid Wall built on occupied land. Human rights watchdog B’Tselem published a video showing Israel’s armored tanker trucks fitted with “water canons” [spraying] the foul fluid.”
     Skunk is a fluid so offensive smelling that people automatically retreat from anywhere or anyone doused with it.
     This is not the first time the Israelis have used such noxious tactics. Zionist settlers are fond of diverting the sewage from their illegal settlements, which are usually placed on high ground, into the fields and towns of Palestinians living in the valleys below. This is apparently done with the knowledge and approval of the Israeli state.
     I doubt if many of the Israelis involved in these maneuvers have ever read Dante’s Inferno. In that epic poem, Hell is a place steeped in sewage and rot, and Israeli actions seem intent on reproducing this scenario. Are the Israelis then trying to turn the Holy Land into Hell? Well, yes, for the Palestinians. To this end the settlers and soldiers mimic Dante’s demons. more.. e-mail

Israel’s government of settlers 
Sergio Yahni, Alternative Information Center 3/24/2013
      The Israeli government is not anymore a pro-settlement government, but a government of settlers. This reality leaves the Palestinians with few alternatives: either to accept it or to rise against it. Yet this reality also puts a new responsibility on the shoulders of the international community: Israel’s cards are clear now; settlers and settlements are not anymore a rotten apple in an otherwise normal country, but they are the Israeli government itself.
     U.S. President Barack Obama held separate meetings with Israeli and Palestinian leaders last week during his visit to the region. Even before the visit, however, Palestinians despaired of Obama’s declarations that he would not present a new Mideast peace initiative or request that Israel halt settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory.
     In an interview aired prior to his visit on the Israeli Chanel 2 Television, Obama ruled out asking Israel to freeze settlement construction, adding “We had overcome the situation of preconditions.” He also ruled out presenting a new initiative to push the stalled peace talks forward.
     On the issue of settlements, officials of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) stressed that the Palestinian position is clear and firm. PLO official Wassel Abu Yousef told Xinhua, the Chinese news agency, that “We refuse to resume any peace negotiations with Israel before Israel halts settlements, which the international community has admitted are illegal.”
     Palestinians agree that Israeli settlements completely undermine the principle of a two-state solution. After all, Israeli settlements, bypass roads, military bases and training zones cover 60 percent of the West Bank territory turning its towns and cities into isolated cantons lacking in geographical connection. more.. e-mail

Israel “tried to banish me for 28 years,” says hunger striker Ayman Sharawna
Electronic Intifada: 25 Mar 2013 – Joe Catron Gaza City 25 March 2013 During the last month of his protest, Sharawna’s captors only allowed him use the bathroom twice a daymore

Obama’s Second Term: Selling Death and Buying Assassins
Palestine Chronicle: 25 Mar 2013 – By James Petras As President Obama enters his second term with a new Cabinet, the foreign policy legacy of the past four years weighs heavily on their strategic decisions and their empire-building efforts. Central to the analysis of the next period is an evaluation of the past policies especially in regions where Washington expended its greatest financial and military resources, namely the Middle East, South Asia and North Africa. We will proceed by examining the accomplishments and failures of the Obama-Clinton regime. We will then turn to the ongoing policy efforts to sustain the empire-building project. We will take account of the constraints and opportunities, which define the parameters resulting from imperial military ambitions, Israeli-Zionist influence in shaping policy and the ongoing anti-imperialist struggles. We will conclude by examining likely polices and outcomes resulting from current strategies. The Clinton-Obama Imperial Legacy: The Accomplishments The greatest success of the Obama-Clinton (OC)…more

What was Wrong with Obama’s Speech in Jerusalem
Palestine Chronicle: 25 Mar 2013 – By Richard Falk It was master-crafted as an ingratiating speech by the world’s most important leader and the government that has most consistently championed Israel’s cause over the decades. Enthusiastically received by the audience of Israeli youth, and especially by liberal Jews around the world. Despite the venue, President Obama’s words in Jerusalem on March 21st seemed primarily intended to clear the air somewhat in Washington. Obama may now have a slightly better chance to succeed in his second legacy-building presidential term despite a deeply polarized U.S. Congress, and a struggling American economy if assessed from the perspective of workers’ distress rather than on the basis of robust corporate profits. As for the speech itself, it did possess several redeeming features. It did acknowledge that alongside Israeli security concerns “Palestinian people’s right of self-determination, their right to justice must also be recognized.” This affirmation was followed by the strongest assertion…more

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Posted 26th March 2013 by InI in category VTJP Palestine/Israel

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