VTJP Palestine/Israel Newslinks 2 May, 2010: Settlers devise new strategy to scare away Palestinian neighbors


International Middle East Media Center

Two African Immigrants Killed By Egyptian Border-Police Fire
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – Egyptian security sources reported Sunday that two African immigrants were shot and killed by Egyptian Border Police fire while trying to infiltrate into Israel seeking work.

Palestinian workers hold Mayday protests in Gaza
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – In honor of the international workers’ day celebration, workers in the Gaza Strip held a rally of over 2,000 people at the Erez crossing with Israel, and 300 people at the Rafah border with Egypt, to call for an end to the Israeli siege on Gaza that has led to unemployment rates of 80%.

Israeli Police Demolishes Homes In Taybeh
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – Scores of Israeli policemen invaded Taybeh Arab city, in the 1948 territory, and demolished a home after surrounding it and forcing the residents out, the Arabs48 news Website reported.

Hamas: “US Guarantees, A Scam”
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – Hamas spokesperson, Fawzi Barhoum, stated that the guarantees of the United States for the resumption of indirect peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians are just a scam, and only provide Israel with more chances to continue its aggression and violations.

Soldiers Attack Nonviolent Protest In Hebron
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – Israeli soldiers attacked on Saturday evening a nonviolent protest against settlements and ongoing settler attacks against the residents of Beit Ummar town, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron.

White House: “Obama Did Not Vow His Country Will Not Use Veto”
IMEMC – 2 May 2010 – The White House denied reports that claimed that President Barack Obama vowed to Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, that the U.S will not use its Veto power to obstruct any decision that condemns Israel for resuming its settlement activities, including in East Jerusalem.

Mitchell Back In Middle East This Week
IMEMC – 1 May 2010 – Israeli sources reported that American Middle East Envoy, George Mitchell, will be back in the region for one week in order to hold talks with Israel and the Palestinian leadership on the resumption of peace talks.

Israel Bans Popular Struggle Leader From Traveling
IMEMC – 1 May 2010 – Eyad Burnat, a leader in the popular struggle against the Israeli wall, was banned by Israel’s military from crossing the West Bank borders into Jordan on Saturday.

Ma’an News

Journalist, protesters injured in Beit Jala rally, witnesses say
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an – A Palestinian photojournalist and two protesters were reportedly injured on Sunday at an anti-wall rally in the West Bank town of Beit Jala, when Israeli forces deployed riot dispersal means. Israeli peace activist Jonathan Pollack said over 150people participated in the weekly anti-wall demonstration organized by the local Popular Committee in Beit Jala, in the Bethlehem governorate. The protesters marched toward the construction site of Israel’s separation wall. Two protesters were hit by rubber bullets, Pollack said, including Muammar Awad, a freelance photojournalist, who was evacuated unconscious to the Sheari Tzedek Hospital in Jerusalem after being hit in the head by a tear-gas canister. The injuries occurred when Israeli forces called on those participating in the rally to vacate the area, Pollack said. An Israeli military spokeswoman said an initial inquiry revealed no evidence of any injuries sustained during the incident, and said no complaint was filled with the local District Coordination Office (DCO).

PA police: Settlers set fire to Palestinian car, 2 injured
5/2/2010 – Ramallah – Ma’an – A group of Israeli citizens living on illegal West Bank settlements threw a torch into a Palestinian-owned car on Saturday as the driver waited to cross the Atara checkpoint, the northern entrance to Ramallah, Palestinian Authority police said. A PA police statement said the driver and passenger, from the Sanur village near Jenin, were taken to the Palestine Medical Center to treat smoke inhalation resulting from the incident. The car was gutted by the fire, the statement said. Fatah spokesman Ahmad Assaf called on the international community to protect Palestinians from “the terrorism practiced by settlers and Israeli forces.”[end]

Anti-wall demonstrators face prison term, fines
5/2/2010 – Ramallah – Ma’an – An Israeli military court sentenced a 16-year-oldHebron boy to three months in prison, while six others were sentenced to three years of probation and a 2,000 shekel (537 US dollars) of fines for participation in an anti-wall rally. The sentencing, carried out at the Ofer military base and detention center near Ramallah in the West Bank on Sunday, saw the Israeli military prosecutor argue that the men and teenagers had endangered the lives of Israeli soldiers. The Israeli court had previously refused to release Ash-Shueiyukhi on bail, though his attorney argued that the indictments against him had been falsified. The seven on trial, including Ash-Shueiyukhi’s relative, were all present at the demonstration protesting the detention of Abbas Zaki, Fatah Central Committee member, who was taken by Israeli forces during an peaceful march on Palm Sunday. The marchers were demanding access for Palestinian Christians to Jerusalem, following a total West Bank closure during the Jewish Passover.

Inquiry launched into fatal shooting by PA forces
5/2/2010 – Hebron – Ma’an – Hebron’s acting mayor announced the creation of a committee to investigate the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old by Palestinian Authority forces in the West Bank city of Hebron. Mayor Samir Abu Zneid said Sunday the investigation committee is comprised of the director of Hebron’s military intelligence services, Fadil Khalawi, military prosecutor Issa Amr, as well as senior security service officials in Hebron. Rami Sa’id Salah Al-Absi died of several gunshot wounds at the Al-Ahli Hospital on Saturday, after PA forces opened fire at the car he and three others were traveling in, suspecting their involvement in an armed robbery in a Bethlehem clothes store, officials said.”We regret what happened and hope to learn a lesson after the investigation committee publishes its findings. We will study the circumstances very transparently, and we send our condolences to the bereaved family,” said Abu Zneid.

Abbas: Proximity talks with Israel approved
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an – The PLO’s Executive Committee has approved US-backed proximity talks with Israel, following the Arab League’s endorsement on Saturday evening, President Mahmoud Abbas said. The indirect talks will last four months, in accordance with the Arab League’s recommendations, Abbas told the Palestinian daily newspaper Al-Ayyam.”I don’t want to give up hope, in spite of the obstacles I see and the fact that there are many who oppose peace,” Abbas told the daily. The president said he would visit the US in May to meet with President Barack Obama after receiving an invitation and affirmed that the meeting will not be trilateral, denying the possibility of meeting with Israeli officials during the visit. The US visit, Abbas explained, is aimed at pushing forward the peace process.”The Americans know that our stance is clear and unchangeable but convenient. We have no points of disagreement with the US. . . .”

Report: 65 Hebronites detained in April
5/2/2010 – Hebron – Ma’an – Israel’s army detained 65 men and women during its army’s night raids and detention campaigns targeting the Hebron governorate during the month of April, the local prisoners society reported on Sunday. The monthly report cataloged the detentions of men, women, children, the ill and disabled, as well as the destruction of private property and home demolitions. Prisoners society researchers noted the increased use of sniffer dogs during home raids that ended in detentions. The dogs, the report said, terrified children. Three men suffering from illnesses that require periodic hospitalization were detained during the month, the report said, identifying Iyad Fadel Abu Husien, a kidney disease sufferer; Isam Al-Badawi, who has a severe heart condition; and Khalil Ibrahim A’wad, an Asthma patient as those taken. A 22-year-old disabled man, Khalil Khaled Idris, and a psychiatric patient, Jamil Zakarieyah Salayiemah, were taken from their homes, the society recorded.

Israeli forces enter Beit Ummar following detentions
5/2/2010 – Hebron – Ma’an – The detention of six teenagers, all under 16 years old, precipitated violence in the area between Beit Ummar and the nearby settlement of Karmi Tzur on Sunday, with reports of stone throwing and tear gas late in the evening. An undercover force of Israeli officers reportedly driving a white pickup truck with Palestinain license places, entered the area from its southern Halhoul road at just after 7:30pm, with witnesses saying the teens were snatched from the center of the town, with the officers using sound-grenades and smoke bombs during the incident. Witnesses said the white van transported the teenagers to a nearby military vehicle near Karmi Tzur, where Palestinian Solidarity Project spokesman Mohammad Ayad Awad said confrontations erupted. Awad said it appeared one soldier was injured by a stone. An Israeli military source said the operation was conducted by a special unit of Israel’s border police.

Gaza gov’t forms team to investigate tunnel deaths
5/2/2010 – Gaza – Ma’an – A committee has been established to investigate the death of four Palestinians inside a tunnel along the Egypt-Gaza border, reportedly resulting from gas poisoning, the de facto government announced Sunday. The Gaza government’s interior ministry and internal security services released a joint statement calling on Egyptian authorities to form a similar inquiry team, adding that the Hamas government would cooperate in all matters. On Wednesday, medics reported that toxic fumes killed four Palestinians and injured six inside a smuggling tunnel. It was not immediately clear what type of gas was used. Medics accused Egyptian forces of spraying a chemical into the tunnel as part of a crackdown on smuggling. One of the victims was identified as Muhammad Abu Jamous. He was among four pronounced dead on arrival at Abu Yousef An-Najjar Hospital in Rafah, our correspondent reported from the scene.

Fatah: PLO session critical before talks start
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an – Fatah official Nabil Amer called for an emergency session of the PLO Central Council before Palestinian officials enter into talks with Israel, after Arab League delegates gave the go-ahead for negotiations on Sunday. The PLO has no objection to the political principle of direct or indirect talks, but the legitimacy of any step in this direction should be taken up and discussed by the representative body, Amer said. The official said he sent a memorandum to the head of the Palestinian National Council, requesting consultations over the fact that Abbas and his team of negotiators will”go to indirect negotiations through US meditation without achieving the Palestinian conditions that were set by the Central Council,” namely a halt to settlement construction. Sources told international media outlets Saturday night that US President Barack Obama had given Palestinian President. . .

5 Palestinians detained overnight in West Bank
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an/Agencies – Five Palestinians were reportedly detained overnight Saturday by Israeli forces across the West Bank, Israeli media said. The Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth said Israeli soldiers detained “five wanted Palestinian terror suspects” near Hebron and Jenin, southern and northern West Bank respectively. The detainees were taken for questioning by security forces, the daily added. [end]

MADA signs legal defense deal for Palestinian journalists
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an – The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) and the Foundation for Future signed a cooperation agreement on Saturday to provide support for Palestinian journalists in the occupied Palestinian territories. A statement issued Sunday said the agreement includes supporting activities related to the legal aspect of defending journalists such as legal consultation and representation in courts. A legal guide for journalists will be produced and workshops will be organized to raise awareness on human rights in general and freedom of expression in particular, the statement added. MADA representative expressed their thanks for the foundation’s support “which will contribute to a significant quality leap in its activities aiming to defend the Palestinian journalists whose rights of freedom and expression are subject to serious violations.”

Report: Obama promises Abbas settlement freeze in J`lem
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an/Agencies – US President Barack Obama has reportedly promised President Mahmoud Abbas a prolonged settlement freeze in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, various media reports said Sunday. Quoting the London-based newspaper Al-Hayat, Israel’s Army Radio reported that chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat told Arab League ministers Saturday night that Obama made his promise off the record in order to avoid conflict with right-wing factions in Israel. Palestinian sources were cited by the Israeli daily Haaretz, saying Israel has committed to continuing the moratorium on settlement construction in the West Bank beyond ten months, which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced in December 2009. The report follows the expected arrival of US Middle East Envoy George Mitchell in the region for a week-long visit on Monday, in a bid to restart indirect talks between Israeli and. . .

Haniyeh tells SA delegation talks with Israel rejected
5/2/2010 – Bethlehem – Ma’an – De facto Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Saturday evening that Palestinians should not enter talks with Israel in light of its actions across the occupied Palestinian territories. A statement released by his office following a meeting with South African Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Ebrahim Ismail Ebrahim said Haniyeh discussed the deteriorating situation in the besieged Gaza Strip and the Hamas government’s rejection of talks with Israel. He added that the rejection resulted from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “insistence to maintain full control over Jerusalem, the Jordan Valley and continued settlement building.” Haniyeh further briefed the South African delegation on Palestinian current events, including a unity deal with rival faction Fatah, describing reconciliation as an “irrevocable choice,” the statement read.

Haniyeh: We take from rich and give to poor
5/2/2010 – Gaza – Ma’an – De facto government Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said he would hand out 2. 5 million US dollars to some 25,000 laborers as proof against recent allegations that Hamas officials were imposing harsh tax-laws. Speaking to Ministry of Labor officials during a May Day celebration, Haniyeh denied accusations made by leftist Palestinian parties that de facto government officials were imposing harsh and arbitrary tax laws on some Gaza workers. Statements from the Democratic and Popular Fronts for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP, PFLP) said last week that Hamas police officers were even confiscating homes for those accused of tax fraud of embezzlement, allegations resolutely denied by government officials.” We take money from the rich to give the poor not vise versa,” the Gaza leader said, noting “nature of the taxes that are imposed by the government are [that they are] little and not heavy.

In photos: Samaritan Passover in Nablus
5/2/2010 – MaanImages / Rami Swidan — Photos 1 – 6: Samaritans cook skewered meat during the traditional Passover ceremony at Mount Gerizim near the northern West Bank city of Nablus late on 28 April 2010. The Samaritan religion is based on four principles of faith, one God – the God of Israel; one Prophet – Moses Ben Amram; the belief in the Torah – the first five books of the Bible and one holy place – Mount Gerizim. The Samaritan community numbers about 720 people mostly leaving in Mount Gerizim in and in Holon near Tel Aviv in Israel. Photos 7 – 12: Samaritans take part in the traditional Passover sacrifice ceremony at Mount Gerizim on 28 April 2010. Photos 12 – 19: Samaritans choose and slaughter sheep during the traditional Passover sacrifice ceremony at Mount Gerizim.

Palestine Note

Palestine Festival of Literature returns to Jerusalem
Palestine Note 2 May 2010 – The third Palestine Festival of Literature kicked off in Jerusalem on Saturday night. PalFest, as its organizers have nicknamed it, brings a raft of internationally-acclaimed authors to the West Bank for a series of lectures, panel…

Gaza World Cup kicks off
Palestine Note 2 May 2010 – The Gaza Strip is one of the most isolated societies in the world – and not so by choice . 1.6 million people are trapped between Israel, Egypt, and the Mediterranean Sea. With a reality like this,…

Potential Egyptian presidential candidate ‘could spark political upheaval’
Palestine Note 2 May 2010 – Long-reigning President Hosni Mubarak has ruled Egypt since Anwar Sadat’s assassination in 1981, and many Egyptians looking for change since then. And now they may have found their political messiah in former IAEA chief Mohammad ElBaradei ….

Nasrallah says Hezbollah has right to arm itself
Palestine Note 2 May 2010 – Hezbollah’s leader Hassan Nasrallah said Saturday that the Islamist group based in Lebanon has a “legal and humanitarian right” to amass weapons that they be able to protect those “oppressed and threatened by Israel,” Haaretz reports….

Palestine Note 2 May 2010 – OLIVE OIL PRODUCER NASR OUDA IS TURNING PRODUCTION WASTE INTO AN ENERGY SOURCE By Mariam Hamed in Gaza – Special to Palestine Note Saturday was May Day (International Labor Day), and cities across the world celebrated…

Palestinian hip hop brings the heat to New York City
Palestine Note 1 May 2010 – By Jared Malsin Palestine’s most famous rap group DAM, a trio from Lod in what is now Israel, performed a concise, energetic set for a full house at Brooklyn’s Southpaw bar. DAM performance, October 2008 Although…


Netanyahu lauds support for talks
AlJazeera 2 May 2010 – Israeli PM reacts to Arab League’s backing for indirect Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.


Settlers devise new strategy to scare away Palestinian neighbors
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Some settlers are employing a new strategy to get Palestinians evicted from their land in the northern region of the Jordan Valley, Haaretz has learned. A number of settlers, some of whom are residents of the Maskiot settlement, set up a “protest” tent next to a tent belonging to Bedouin herdsmen near Wad el Maleh, on private Palestinian land. Last Thursday, after the Palestinians complained to the civil administration, both the Israelis and Palestinians there were handed decrees declaring the area a closed military zone, signed by brigade commander Yochai Ben-Yishai. …

IAF modifies pilot training following probe of Asaf Ramon’s death
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – New regulations stipulate that, early on, pilots will practice in a centrifuge flight simulator that recreates intense cabin conditions.

Iran says it developed short-range missile defense system
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – New short range anti-Cruise defense system has capability to fire 4,000 rounds of bullets per minute.

Egypt police kill two migrants on Israel border
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – The Africans were shot after ignoring orders to stop while trying to climb over the barbed wire fence.

Israel to open peace talks with security, water demands
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – The PLO executive committee is expected Monday to officially decide to renew negotiations.

Hamas blasts Arab support for indirect peace talks
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Hamas: Endorsement of the Arab committee allows Israel to continue violations against Palestinians.

Abbas: Obama won’t allow provocations from either Palestinians or Israel
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Abbas aide: Obama commitment to two-state solution; Netanyahu lauds Arab League vote to renew talks.

Egypt opposition: Arrest Netanyahu for war crimes
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Netanyahu to visit Sharm this week for talks with Mubarak, faces protest from Kifaya and Brotherhood.

Jordan king to J Street: Cycle of Mideast violence must end
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Abdullah II meets representatives of U.S.-based Jewish group, in region on fact-finding mission.

Peres: Proximity Mideast talks are necessary and in Israel’s interest
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – President tells visiting Danish FM: Israel has adopted principle of 2-state solution, ready to move forward.

Clinton: Iran diverting attention from its NPT violations
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Danish FM: World must unite against Iran nukes; Peres: North Korea part of world smuggling ring.

Pakistani Taliban claims responsibility for failed Times Square attack
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Mayor Bloomberg thanks alert New Yorkers, says ‘This could have been a deadly event.’

Shas slams T.A. mayor’s ‘racist’ call to rebel against ultra-Orthodox
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai on Sunday urged the “silent masses” in the city to stand up against the amount of funds being given to the ultra-Orthodox sector at the expense of the working public, raising the ire of the sector’s representatives in government. …

Arafat’s ‘adviser on Jewish affairs’ dies, aged 86
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Moshe Hirsch, a member of Neturei Karta, who was close to the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, died Sunday at 86, at home in Jerusalem’s Mea She’arim quarter. …

Police: Olmert aide funneled him more than NIS 1m in bribes
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – Ehud Olmert’s former bureau chief, Police revealed on Sunday that Shula Zaken, is suspected of having passed along to the former prime minister more than NIS 1 million in bribes from land owners involved in the Holyland luxury housing development project in Jerusalem. …

Wife of suspected child-abuser Elior Chen jailed for 5 years
Ha’aretz 2 May 2010 – The wife of suspected child abuser Elior Chen was sentenced to five years in prison as part of a plea bargain handed down on Sunday. …

IOF raid two houses in Hebron, attack Palestinian worker
2 May 2010 – Hebron, May 2, (Pal Telegraph) Beefed up Israeli occupation Forces raided early today the city of “Hebron” in the West Bank and the towns of ” Al thahereyah” and “Sair”, and wreaked a havoc among the two houses. Eyewitnesses reported that Israeli soldiers beat a worker, Mohamed Adel Bheis, from the town of “Yatta”, which led to his bruises. The…

Israel bans Bilin resident from traveling abroad
2 May 2010 – Bi’lin, May 2, (Pal Telegraph) Ha’aretz reported that the Israeli intelligence prevented on Saturday, a resident of “Bi’lin” area, who is active against the process of building the apartheid wall, from crossing the “The Prophet” bridge on his way to attend a conference held in Europe. Iyad Burnat, said that he wants to talk at these conferences about the presence…

Israel bans Ceramic entry for Al Aqsa mosque restoration process
2 May 2010 – Jerusalem, May 2, (Pal Telegraph) Sheikh Azzam Khatib, director of the Endowment’s office in Jerusalem, confirmed their rejection when it comes to Israel’s actions in preventing the entry of the necessary materials for the restoration of Al Aqsa Mosque and its interference in all affairs by claiming full sovereignty over the Aqsa mosque. Khatib made a statement in the light…

Gaza: 1 commercial crossing to partially open, 2nd stays closed
2 May 2010 – Gaza, May 2, (Pal Telegraph) The Israeli occupation authorities decided today to partially open the Kerem Abu Salem crossing to let in food, aid and fuel. Raed Fattouh, the Chairman of the goods entry into Gaza Committee, said that the Israeli occupation authorities decided to partially open today the Kerem Abu Salem crossing, southeast of the Gaza Strip to insert…

The National

Stars come out to demand film director Panahi’s freedom
The National 2 May 2010 – Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro join the celebrity campaign for the release of the Iranian film director Jafar Panahi from a Tehran prison.

Israeli Minister of Interior Prevents Ittijah Director from Leaving the Country
Alternative Information Center – Tuesday, 27 April 2010, On April 22, 2010 the Israeli Border Police prevented Mr. Ameer Makhoul, the Director ofIttijah — Union of Arab Community-Based Associations inside Israel,from leaving the country. Makhoul, who also serves as the…

OECD: It Takes Only One Country to Stop Israel from Joining
Alternative Information Center – Saturday, 01 May 2010, Dear friends, Attached to this e-mail is an english translation of a letter sent to the OECD delegation of Sweden by The Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden (PGS). PGS is distributing the…

Palestine News Network

Pro Israeli Intellectuals Protest The Government Settlements Policy
PNN – Ghassan Bannoura — PNN- Around 3000 Pro Israeli European Jewish Intellectuals issued a statement over the week end calling Israel to stop settlements construction in the West Bank including east Jerusalem. The…

A Nonviolent Protest In Beit Jala Town Near Bethlehem ends with clashes, one Journalist Injured
PNN – Ghassan Bannoura — PNN — one Palestinian journalist was critically injured five other teenagers and an aged woman, suffered tear gas inhalation when troops attacked local youth in the town of Beit…

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (22-28 April 2010)
PCHR 28 Apr 2010 – Israeli Occupation Forces Continue Systematic Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) ¬? Two Palestinian civilians were killed in the West Bank in a new extra-judicial assassination…..

Jerusalem Post

State sues for 2008 evacuation costs
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Suing two right-wing settler groups in Hebron for NIS 305,000.

Gov’t mulls harsher prison conditions
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Aiming to increase pressure on Hamas for Schalit release.

Knesset urges gov’t to stop boycott by PA
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Ayalon: Boycott may damage talks, distance Palestinian acceptance to WTO

Lynch of Egyptian in Lebanon strains ties
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Underscores weak rule of law, xenophobia in Lebanon, rights worker says.

PA tourney named after Abu Jihad
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Palestinian institutions and events still named after terrorists, study shows.

PM to promote Gilad Schalit bill
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Legislation to limit Hamas prisoner privileges to advance Schalit’s release.

‘Iran violating key nuclear treaty’
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Clinton: Ahmadinejad using NY trip to divert attention.

‘Zaken transferred NIS 1m. in bribes’
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Police suspect former Olmert aide also received jewelery, painting.

Lebanon, quiet expected in municipal elections
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Alliances among rival politicians produce consensual lists in most localities.

Abbas: ‘Many obstacles’ for peace
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – PA President seeks control over east Jerusalem, Jordan Valley.

Danish FM visits Israel
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – Peres: “Israel is stretching out its hand for honest peace”

Israel impresses at Shanghai’s Expo 2010
Jeruslalem Post 2 May 2010 – “Visitors can learn Israel’s success story.”

WAFA – Palestine News Agency

Shabak Bars Bil’in Protester from Traveling to Conferences in Europe
TEL AVIV, May 2, 2010 (WAFA)- Protester against the Israeli Apartheid Wall on the land of West Bank village of Bil’in west of Ramallah, Iyad Burnat wanted to cross the Al Awda Bridge to travel

Peres: Israel Wants Independent, Affluent Palestinian State
TEL AVIV, May 2, 2010 (WAFA)- Haaretz Israeli Daily said, today that, Israeli President Shimon Peres declared

Journalist and Two Protesters Hurt in Beit Jala Demo
BEIT JALA, May 2, 2010 (WAFA)- Two protesters and a cameraman suffered injuries and required medical treatment during the weekly demonstration against the Wall in Beit Jala. Over 150 people

The Guardian

Unconditional support for Israel ‘is dangerous’, say leading European Jews
The Guardian 2 May 2010 – Anti-settlement petition signed by Bernard Henri-L?©vy and others causes division in Jewish community More than 3,000 European Jews, including prominent intellectuals, have signed a petition speaking out against Israeli settlement policies and warning that systematic support…

YNet News

Israel-PA ‘proximity’ talks to commence Wednesday
YNet News – Indirect proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinians will commence on Wednesday, Ynet learned. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to personally head …….

Government approves aid package for Gaza evacuees
YNet News – The government approved on Sunday a plan which offers Israelis who were evacuated from the Gush Katif settlement bloc in 2005 financial aid to build a home of their …….

Jerusalem Municipality ‘bolsters Zionist population’
YNet News – In response to a Ynet inquiry which revealed that only 12.7% of first-grade pupils registered for the current school year in the municipal school system are secular, the …….

PM considers aggravating Hamas prisoners’ conditions
YNet News – The Internal Security and Justice ministries have been instructed by the prime minister to examine the option of submitting a government bill regarding the confinement …….

Palestinian Information Center

Haneyya calls on the Arabs to patronize reconciliation rather than negotiations
PIC 2 May 2010 – Palestinian premier Ismail Haneyya called on the Arab countries to patronize inter-Palestinian reconciliation rather than resumption of negotiations between the PA in Ramallah and the IOA.

Mada: IOA violates freedom of the press
PIC 2 May 2010 – The Palestinian center for development and media freedoms (Mada) monitored 69 press violations on the part of the IOA and the Ramallah authority over the first four months of 2010.

IOF soldiers suppress Palestinian anti-wall march, wound 7 civilians
PIC 2 May 2010 – IOF used violent means to suppress a peaceful Palestinian anti-wall march in Beit Jala village, Bethlehem district, on Sunday during which 7 Palestinian civilians were hurt.

Kuwaiti parliamentary delegation arrives in Gaza
PIC 2 May 2010 – A 5-member parliamentary delegation from Kuwait arrived in Gaza Strip on Sunday for a few days visit to the Strip during which the delegates would tour Kuwaiti-financed charitable projects.

Arson attacks on Palestinian cars, new crime against Palestinians in W. Bank
PIC 2 May 2010 – The settlers started in the last three days a new kind of crimes against the Palestinians in the West Bank represented in waging arson attacks on cars in the presence of Israeli troops.

Taher slams Arab-backed PA decision to resume talks with Israel
PIC 2 May 2010 – Dr. Maher Al-Taher denounced the Arab-backed decision taken by the PA to resume indirect talks with Israel, saying this decision would cover up settlement and Judaization activities in Palestine.

OCHA: Most Gaza people still suffer from power crisis
PIC 2 May 2010 – The OCHA said most of Gaza residents still suffer from power outages due to the low supplies of industrial fuel used to operate the electric station, warning that the crisis may escalate.

IOF soldiers quell peaceful Palestinian march
PIC 2 May 2010 – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) quelled afternoon Saturday a peaceful Palestinian march in Beit Ummar village, north of Al-Khalil, and beat up many of its participants.

IOA demolishes Palestinian home in Taiba
PIC 2 May 2010 – The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) razed a Palestinian home in Taiba, in the Triangle area occupied in 1948, at a late hour on Saturday rendering its residents homeless.

Palestinian minister of detainees holds Israel responsible for death of Zedat
PIC 2 May 2010 – Palestinian minister of prisoners’ affairs Mohamed Al-Ghoul held the Israeli occupation authority (IOA) fully responsible for the death of cancer patient Fayez Zedat, an ex-detainee in its jails.

The Media Line

Lebanon Lynch of Egyptian Strains Diplomatic Ties
The Media Line 1 May 2010 – Lynching underscores xenophobia and weak law enforcement in Lebanon. The lynching by a Lebanese mob of an Egyptian man who allegedly went on a murder spree has strained relations between Cairo and Beirut, but is not…

Syrian Minister Accuses Secretary Clinton of Slander Over Scuds
The Media Line 1 May 2010 – Syria’s foreign minister is accusing U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of promoting a campaign of “slander” after she warned Syrian President Al-Asad that sending Scud missiles to Hizbullah could lead to war. The state news…

Arab League Okays Indirect Talks
The Media Line 1 May 2010 – The Arab League has green-lighted indirect talks between Israel and the Palestinians to be mediated by the United States. Foreign ministers from Arab nations met in Cairo to approve the American plan and to give Palestinian…

Newspaper: If Talks Fail, Obama Will Call International Conference; Support Palestinian State
The Media Line 1 May 2010 – An Israeli newspaper is quoting unnamed U.S. officials as saying that President Obama’s fall-back plan if indirect talks between Israel and the Palestinians fail is to hold an international conference that will support the declaration of…

Los Angeles Times

For Obama, room to maneuver on Israel
LA Times 2 May 2010 – His approach upsets pro-Israeli groups, but he retains substantial backing among American Jews overall President Obama’s altercations with the Israeli government have brought protests from U.S. groups that staunchly support Israel.

New York Times

American Filmmakers Call for Release of Iranian Director
New York Times 1 May 2010 – On Friday, a group of leading American filmmakers — including Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola — called on Iran’s government to release Jafar Panahi an Iranian director, who has been detained in Tehran since early March.


Palestine Monitor – “The right to freedom of movement provides that people are entitled to move freely within the borders of the state, to leave any country and to return to their country.” Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and article 12 of the International Covenant…

Kafkaesque Rules On Gaza Goods Transfers
Palestine Monitor – In September 2007 the Security Cabinet of Israel declared that Gaza was a hostile territory. Israel restricted the transfer of goods into Gaza not for security reasons, but rather as part of a policy to apply “pressure” or “sanctions” on Hamas. Three years later Israeli policy…

OECD: It Takes Only One Country to Stop Israel from Joining
Alternative Information Center – Saturday, 01 May 2010, Dear friends, Attached to this e-mail is an english translation of a letter sent to the OECD delegation of Sweden by The Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden (PGS). PGS is distributing the document as a sample letter without restrictions for other organizations…

Israeli Minister of Interior Prevents Ittijah Director from Leaving the Country
Alternative Information Center – Tuesday, 27 April 2010, On April 22, 2010 the Israeli Border Police prevented Mr. Ameer Makhoul, the Director ofIttijah — Union of Arab Community-Based Associations inside Israel,from leaving the country. Makhoul, who also serves as the head of thePopular Committee for the Defense of Political Freedoms,…

Aaron David Miller’s lost faith
Mondoweiss – Aaron David Miller delivered a lecture at the American University of Beirut last week entitled “Gulliver’s Troubles: Barack Obama in the Middle East.” The talk focused on many of the same points he made recently in a Foreign Policy article ; mainly that American policy on Palestine…

‚ÄòSpecial relationship’ has only threatened the ‘stable flow of oil’
Mondoweiss – Since its founding in 2001, The Electronic Intifada has earned a well-deserved reputation for being the most influential and effective voice for Palestinian rights. It is backed by a team of smart, savvy and committed individuals. Its co-founder Ali Abunimah is in my view an examplar…

If Fayyad is so great, why not let Israelis vote for him too?
Mondoweiss – A number of writers I respect, including Roger Cohen , have lately embraced Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad as the hope for peace in Israel/Palestine. I’ve read that Fayyad is the George Washington of Palestine (per Shimon Peres) and that he is western-educated and wants to build…

‚ÄòNYT’ falsely suggests that anti-Zionist scribes are beavering away in Jewish media
Mondoweiss – Writer Mark Oppenheimer regularly writes the Beliefs column for the New York Times. Last week he wrote a piece on a new Jewish book review that includes a notable stretcher: [Jewish Review of Books editor Abraham] Socher also hopes to provide a politically neutral zone for…

Security Council sea change?
Mondoweiss – Last week at the Doha debates, Roger Cohen of the New York Times said that the U.S. might well not veto a Security Council resolution that condemns Israel and this would be huge. We get the same report from Mark Landler in the Times : Separately, these…


As Obama Retreats, Palestinians Renew Their Struggle
Rachelle Marshall, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs4/1/2010
Told by an Indian that “Gandhi is truly dead in Gujarat,” he responded, “Perhaps, but he has surfaced again in Palestine, in the village of Bil’in.”—Anita Desai, quoting Pacifist activist David Shulman, New York Review of Books, Feb. 11, 2010.
AMERICAN Middle East policy has been weighted in favor of Israel ever since President Harry Truman rejected the advice of Secretary of State George C. Marshall and pushed through a resolution at the U.N. General Assembly giving most of Palestine to the Jews, who were then a minority of the population. As the new state of Israel proceeded to expel the original inhabitants and seize more of their land, Washington turned a blind eye—and footed the bill.
This lopsided relationship has continued under almost every president, kept in place by a powerful Israel lobby and an unrelenting disinformation campaign. The one exception was President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who in 1956 ordered Israel, France and England to turn back from their attempted invasion of the Sinai. Israel’s current prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, has stretched the relationship to the point of mockery, not only thwarting every effort by President Barack Obama to broker an Israeli-Palestinian peace but doing so with almost gleeful defiance.
Obama’s response has been a full retreat to the failed policy of urging the two sides to resume negotiations, which means letting the Palestinians go it alone while Israel takes more and more of their land. Instead of supporting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in his demand that Israel stop all settlement construction before he will take part in peace talks, Obama sent his special Middle East envoy George J. Mitchell to urge Abbas back to the negotiating table.
In the tradition of his predecessors, Netanyahu made sure the mission would fail….more..e-mail

Editorial: Observing World Press Freedom Day
Ma’an News Agency5/2/2010
Every year on 3 May, World Press Freedom Day is celebrated around the world. It presents an opportunity for us all to reflect on the importance of a free media to our lives and our societies, and to somberly commemorate the sacrifices of those on the frontline. In 2009 alone, 99 journalists were killed across the globe. This is 99 too many.
Palestine felt the particular pain and fear of losing media colleagues during the December 2008 to January 2009 war in the Gaza Strip, in which six Gaza journalists lost their lives.
In recent years, three Ma’an journalists nearly joined their number having been severely injured in the line of duty. The organization continuously strives to equip journalists with the requisite training and equipment to work as safely as possible, and advocate and defend a free media environment, publicizing violations of press freedoms wherever they originate.
World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by UNESCO in 1993 to mark the anniversary of the UNESCO Declaration of Windhoek on 3 May 1991, which affirmed the essential role of free, independent and pluralistic media to the existence of democracy and fundamental human rights.
This year, the UN-body’s annual conference commemorating the event, titled “Freedom of Information: The Right to Know”, starts Sunday in Brisbane, Australia. Participating Ma’an Network staff will highlight the particular challenges faced by Palestinian journalists in the context of the ongoing Israeli occupation of Palestine and internal Palestinian disputes.
In the occupied Palestinian territories, press freedom is threatened by intimidation; restrictions on movement and access to information; by a lack of transparency and deliberate confusion. Pressures abound to not report information that will reflect badly on the different authorities, and journalists are frequently injured while reporting Israeli military activity.more..e-mail

Fayyad vs. Haniyeh
Nasser Lahham, Ma’an News Agency5/2/2010
Any Arab or Palestinian citizen can easily and fearlessly criticize or attack Prime Minister Salam Fayyad because he is neither affiliated with Fatah nor Hamas. Other Palestinian factions praise him occasionally and attack him most of the time. However, the Palestinian and the international community see Fayyad as a necessity for the persistence of the Palestinian Authority. Even the leaders who criticize him repeatedly are usually seen in his office.
Since Hamas won the general elections in 2006, the world said if the Palestinians chose to support Ismail Haniyeh as prime minister, they would lose all access to international aid and funding. The majority preferred aid over Hamas and Haniyeh. Since then, Fayyad began to rise and Haniyeh remained bound by the Hamas-Fatah rivalry in Gaza. The two main factions indulged in bloody fighting over the post of prime minister, which went to Fayyad who is not affiliated to either movement.
The Fayyad government managed to get President Mahmoud Abbas to issue 38 presidential decrees in only a couple of years. Some consider that a violation of the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Legislative Council, as lawmakers themselves did not approve a similar number of laws in ten years. “The Palestinian Basic Law authorizes the government to make these decisions and the PLC can approve, amend or annul them,” Fayyad says.
If one attempts to analyze Fayyad’s role as prime minister, the following is apparent:
Fayyad repeats the same words in his speeches tirelessly, believing that repetition will lead to awareness which, in turn, will lead to a lack of hesitation, leading to action.
Fayyad says the Palestinian state will be established in 2011, and he believes he will automatically be the prime minister of that state. This is controversial as Fayyad is relying on his belief that rivals Fatah and Hamas will not be able to sign a conciliation agreement, and I think he is right.more..e-mail

Kafkaesque Rules On Gaza Goods Transfers
Palestine Monitor: 2 May 2010 – In September 2007 the Security Cabinet of Israel declared that Gaza was a hostile territory. Israel restricted the transfer of goods into Gaza not for security reasons, but rather as part of a policy to apply “pressure” or “sanctions” on Hamas. Three years later Israeli policy has degenerated into a confusion of Kafkaesque bureaucracy. ” Additional sanctions will be placed on the Hamas regime in order to restrict the passage of various goods to the Gaza Strip and reduce the supply of fuel and electricity. Restrictions will also be placed on the movement of people. The sanctions will be enacted following a legal examination, while taking into account both the humanitarian aspects relevant to the Gaza Strip and the intention to avoid a humanitarian crisis.” With this nota from the Security Cabinet, Israel openly declared its intention to block goods beyond what is deemed ” essential for the survival of…

Surrender to Injustice Never an Option: A Gaza Story
Palestine Chronicle: 2 May 2010 – By Dr. Ludwig Watzal ‘Not one refugee will return. The old will die. The young will forget.’ This prediction, uttered by David Ben-Gurion in 1948, did not come true. Not only the keys of the houses, that the Palestinians were forced to leave, passed on from generation to the other, but so did the memoirs and the deep roots and emotional attachment to the Land of Palestine endured over the years. When the founding of Israel was declared on May 15, 1948, the then Zionist militias had already depopulated 212 Palestinian villages and three major towns before even one Arab soldiers had set foot in Palestine. The Arab armies, who did not intervene against the expulsion of thousands of Palestinians before May 15, 1948, declared war against the newly established state, in a desperate attempt to protect the areas allocated to the Palestinian state. The war ended with a ceasefire….more

Countdown to Israel-Palestinian Impact
Palestine Chronicle: 2 May 2010 – By James Gundun – Washington D.C. The next several weeks will see a frenzied exchange of activity between America, Israel, the Palestinians, and Arab states. The Arab League has already approved a second attempt at “indirect negotiations” between the three other parties. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits Egypt on Monday, and later in the week US envoy George Mitchell lands in Jerusalem for what is being billed as the first round of proxy talks. Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will then travel to Washington to officially rekindle the peace process while shaking a smiling President Obama’s hand. These movements will be accompanied by a high decimal level of diplomatic and media chatter. We’ll be told that every party is firmly and finally committed to achieving a lasting peace in the region, and that those who spoil the quest will be held accountable. The problem is, we’ve been here…more

A Cloud over Jerusalem
Palestine Chronicle: 2 May 2010 – By Uri Avnery – Israel Everyone has the right to change his or her mind. Even Danny Tirzeh. Colonel Tirzeh was responsible for planning the wall that “envelopes” Jerusalem — the one that cuts the city off from the West Bank in order to turn it into the United Capital Of Israel For All Eternity. And now, suddenly, Tirzeh pops up as the main opponent of the wall he himself planned. He wants to move it, so as to leave the lands of al-Walaja village on the “Israeli” side. The Colonel has ceased acting on behalf of the Israeli army and now represents private entrepreneurs who want to build 14 thousand housing units for 45 thousand Jewish souls. All this, of course, for the greater good of Zionism, the Jewish people, Israel’s Eternal Capital, and many tens of millions of shekels. Colonel Tirzeh is not just anybody. He is a…more

EU MPs and Ministers Assess Gaza Today
Palestine Chronicle: 2 May 2010 – By Stephen Lendman During a recent visit, a 50-person European Campaign to End the Siege of Gaza (ECESG) assessed conditions on the ground firsthand, one year after Operation Cast Lead: “to collect and document the facts, and then return to our respective countries and the European Parliament to push for actions that will bring immediate humanitarian relief and an end to the siege, as well as peace and justice to the Palestinian people,” what they’ve long been denied under a repressive occupation. ECESG ( www.savegaza.eu ) calls itself: “an umbrella body of non-governmental organizations across Europe that advocates (for) the fundamental right of the Palestinian people in Gaza to live in peace and dignity without being subjected to any form of collective punishment….ECESG supports the restoration of (Gazans’) inalienable rights….and lobbies for pressure to be exerted on (Israel) to lift its siege and end the human tragedy there.” Meetings were held with…more

Archbishop’s Silence over Israeli Bullying
Palestine Chronicle: 2 May 2010 – By Stuart Littlewood — London There’s another twist in the recent adventures of the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. This Christian Top Cat visited Gaza in February — a year late, let it be said – but afterwards made no public statement about the wretched human conditions still prevailing there. He didn’t even reveal his findings to the House of Lords where he has the support of a large gaggle of bishops. This despite his claim to be “in a unique position to bring the needs and voices of those fighting poverty, disease and the effects of conflict, to the attention of national and international policy makers”. And despite his declaration that “Christians need to witness boldly and clearly”. And despite his urging greater awareness of the humanitarian crisis to ensure that the people of Gaza are not forgotten. But there’s more… A reader writes that she sent 18…more

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