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Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel
For those interested in keeping up with events in Palestine/Israel, there is no better digest than VTJP.

VTJP Archives | VTJP 2009
16 February, 2010


International Middle East Media Center

The Israeli military detains to civilians and conducts a training exercise in the West Bank
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Tuesday February 16, 2010 - 16:51, Two Palestinian civilians were detained by Israeli soldiers, while other troops conducted a training exercise in the West Bank on Tuesday.

PA Marshal Court sentence a Palestinian Journalist to 18 months in jail
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Tuesday February 16, 2010 - 16:25, On Tuesday, Palestinian Marshal Court in Nablus city, southern West Bank, sentenced a Palestinian Journalist to 18 months in jail.

The Israeli military injures three and detains them at northern Gaza Strip
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Tuesday February 16, 2010 - 15:49, Three Palestinians were reported injured and detained by Israeli troops on Tuesday at the northern Gaza Strip town of Biet Lahyia.

Arab Parliamentarians Arrive In Gaza
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Tuesday February 16, 2010 - 06:01, A group of Arab parliamentarians managed to cross into the Gaza Strip on Monday in a visit of solidarity with the Palestinian people living in the besieged, war-torn, and devastated coastal region.

Dubai Police Releases Details on Persons Involved In Assassinating Hamas Leader
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Tuesday February 16, 2010 - 04:58, The police department in Dubai released on Monday significant details regarding the cell that carried out the assassination of Qassam Brigades leader, Mahmoud Al Madbouh at a hotel in the United Arab Emirates on January 20.

The Israeli Military Detain 12 Palestinian Civilians During Invasions in the West Bank
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Monday February 15, 2010 - 16:01, Twelve Palestinian civilians were detained by Israeli troops, on Monday, during invasions targeting a number of West Bank communities.

The Israeli Military & Police Raid Palestinian Areas in Jerusalem to Enforce Taxes
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Monday February 15, 2010 - 15:28, The Israeli police forces, along with Israeli soldiers, stormed a number of Palestinian neighborhoods, on Monday, to enforce resident to bay taxes.

British Journalist Detained In Gaza
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Monday February 15, 2010 - 03:48, Palestinian and British sources confirmed that a British documentary director was arrested by the Hamas controlled security forces after he arrived at a Gaza court to testify in a law suit filed against a Palestinian gunman accused of collaborating with Israel.

Arab Parliamentarians In Gaza Monday
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Monday February 15, 2010 - 03:22, The Hamas-dominated Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) reported that 26 Arab Parliamentarians from different countries will visit, Monday, to express solidarity with the residents of the war-torn & impoverished region.

Child Wounded By Israeli Fire In Central Gaza
IMEMC 16 Feb 2010 - Monday February 15, 2010 - 02:56, Palestinian medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported on Sunday evening that a Palestinian child suffered moderate wounds after the Israeli army bombarded a number of homes in the Juhr al-Deek area, in central Gaza.

Ma'an News

One Gaza crossing partially open, exports resume
2/17/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - The Kerem Shalom crossing will be partly opened on Tuesday, Israeli officials informed Palestinain liaison officials, for the limited import of food aid and export of flowers. Palestinian border crossing official Raed Fattouh said 72 to 82 truckloads of humanitarian aid and commercial goods were expected to be allowed into Gaza, including three truckloads of paper for the Palestinian Telecommunications Company (PalTel). Some fuel and two truckloads of glass will also be permitted to pass into Gaza, Fattouh said. The glass shipments complete the 100-truckload quota permitted by Israeli crossings officials. Limited amounts of cooking gas and industrial fuel will also be pumped in, the official said. Only minimal industrial fuel deliveries have been permitted since Sunday, following an announcement by the Gaza. . . 

Locals say Gaza man held without charge in Egypt since 2008
2/16/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - Friends and colleagues of a Gaza man said this week that he has been held without charge or trial in an Egyptian jail since early 2008 when he and hundreds of thousands of other Palestinians breached the border wall into Egypt. Ayman Noufal's supporters say he was arrested on 27 January 2008, when militants in Gaza dynamited the border wall separating Gaza from Egypt, allowing thousands to cross into Egypt to buy goods made scarce by the Israeli-led blockade. A "solidarity committee" set up to support Noufal said he has been subjected to "psychological and physical torture" while in prison. The report could not be independently verified by Ma'an. The solidarity committee appealed specifically to the Hamas government in Gaza to pressure Egypt to release Noufal and return him to his family and six children. 

Hamas: PA court jails journalist
2/16/2010 - Nablus - Ma'an - A Palestinian Authority military court in Nablus sentenced a Hamas affiliate to 18 months in prison on Tuesday on charges of money laundering and other offenses. Tariq Abu Zeid of Jenin was found guilty of incitement, "delivering information," and laundering money to "enemy entities," said an official in the prosecutors office who spoke on the condition of anonymity. However, Hamas sources said Abu Zeid is in fact a journalist, and was arrested and convicted because he worked as a correspondent for the Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa satellite TV. [end] 

Gaza detainee released after 6 years in detention
2/16/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israeli authorities released Wael Abu Elwan of Rafah after six years of detention on Tuesday evening. Wael was detained by Israeli forces in a raid against the Tal As-Soltan neighborhood in the southern Gaza Strip city in 2004, when he was detained along with a number of Palestinian men. Israel had accused Abu Elwan of involvement with armed groups, including Palestinian Authority security forces. [end] 

In Saudi Arabia, Clinton gives nod to settlements
2/17/2010 - Washington - Ma'an - A day after she acknowledged frustration with the US role in the stalled Mideast peace process, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reaffirmed US calls on Monday for an Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 borders with the exception of some settlements. "The parties can mutually agree on an outcome which ends the conflict and reconciles the Palestinian goal of an independent and viable state based on the 1967 lines with agreed swaps, and the Israeli goal of a Jewish state with secure and recognized borders that reflect subsequent developments and meet Israeli security requirements," she said during a news conference in Riyadh alongside Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal. The reference to "subsequent developments" was a an acknowledgement of Israeli intentions to maintain control of many settlements built on land taken from Palestinians after the 1967 occupation of the West Bank. 

Jordan king to J Street: Peace efforts at critical phase
2/17/2010 - Washington - Ma'an - Jordan's King Abdullah II told supporters of a US pro-Israeli group on Monday that efforts to achieve peace between Israel and Palestinians have reached a "critical phase" that demands renewed international attention. The kingdom's state news agency Petra that Abdullah made this pronouncement in a meeting with in Amman a visiting delegation representing the J Street, the US' self-styled pro-peace, pro-Israeli organization. According to the group's website the delegation includes five members of the US House of Representatives Lois Capps (D-California), Bill Delahunt (D-Massachusetts), Bob Filner (D-California), Mary Jo Kilroy (D-Ohio), and Donald Payne (D-New Jersey). J street also said the group is planning to visit Israel and the West Bank city of Ramallah, a stop which will include a meeting with caretaker Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad. 

Nasrallah: Armed opposition deters Israel
2/17/2010 - Washington - Ma'an - Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah argued on Tuesday that armed resistance, not diplomacy, is the most effective means to keep Arab nations safe from potential Israeli attack. Since Israel's 2006 war with Hizbullah in Lebanon, Nasrallah asserted, "The Israelis have acknowledged failure and admitted that the resistance has grown stronger. " "When Israel wants to go to war, it has to be conditional. They [must] be able to achieve a clear, decisive, and guaranteed victory, not just victory as a possibility," he added in a speech delivered in a south Beirut suburb commemorating the deaths of Hizbullah members. "In Lebanon, Palestine, and Syria, we are so strong that Israel cannot wage war on us whenever it wants to. It is not enough for Israel to have a strong possibility of victory because this entity cannot tolerate another defeat," he said, as quoted by Hizbullah's official broadcaster Al-Manar. 

Arab MPs visit Gaza in bid to break Hamas-Fatah stalemate
2/16/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - A delegation of Arab lawmakers arrived in Gaza via Egypt on Monday in a bid to break an impasse in Palestinian unity efforts. "We came to represent the Arab parliaments and the Arab nation. We came as 22 deputies who represent the Arab nation from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf as a united nation," the group said in a declaration upon arriving via the Egyptian-controlled Rafah crossing point. "We want the Palestinian people to be united, as no party ever defeated its enemy when it was divided," they added. "We ask you to unite in order to achieve the nation's aim of establishing an independent Palestinian state. " The delegation from the Arab Parliamentary Union included m,embers from Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Morocco, Algeria, Qatar, Bahrain, Lebanon, Sudan, Kuwait, and Oman. Ahmad Bahar, a Hamas leader and the deputy speaker of the Palestinian Legislative. . . 

PA begins enforcing ban on settlement goods
2/16/2010 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Hundreds of turkeys smuggled from Israeli settlements in the northern West Bank were seized en route to Bethlehem on Tuesday, a Palestinian Authority official said. Bethlehem Governor Abdul Fattah Hamayil said a truck driver transporting the poultry claimed it came from Jenin, however, investigators discovered it was smuggled from Israeli settlements. Hamayil said the poultry was seized as a result of cooperation between PA preventative security services in Bethlehem and Jenin, customs agents, the Bethlehem governorate and its municipal council. The poultry was confiscated, he added. "After the birds were examined and proved fit [for consumption], authorities decided to slaughter them and distribute the meat to charities working for the disabled, elderly people, and children," he said, vowing to crack down on the smuggling of settlement products. 

Fayyad meets with foreign minister of Austria
2/16/2010 - Ramallah - Ma'an - Caretaker Prime Minister Salam Fayyad met on Tuesday with foreign minister of Austria Michael Spindelegger in Ramallah along with an Austrian delegation. Fayyad updated his guests on the current situation in Palestine and obstacles which impede the peace process, which he identified as Israel's refusal to freeze settlement activities. The Ramallah-based prime minister stated the importance of European action based on the EU foreign ministers' statement on the Middle East released on 8 December 2009, which backed East Jerusalem as the capital of a future Palestinian state. He described the statement as a milestone and real basis for "a clear and balanced international stand, which will enable the International Quartet to effectively intervene and compel Israel to comply with international law and fully halt settlement activities, especially in Jerusalem. " 

PA denies reported arrest of security officer
2/17/2010 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - A man reportedly detained for plotting to kill Palestinian Authority officials is not a member of the PA security services, a top security official said on Tuesday. PA security spokesman Adnan Ad-Dmeiri told Ma'an that Mujahed Nimer, a resident of Qalandiya refugee camp, has never been a member of the Ramallah government's forces. Nimer was arrested on criminal charges following a warrant issued by prosecutors, Dmeiri said, contradicting a report in the Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth that identified Nimer as "a top official in the Palestinian security apparatus. "Quoting a senior Fatah source, the Hebrew-language newspaper said Nimer, identified as a police officer, was apprehended along with four other members of a group, said to be affiliated with Fatah, for planning to carry out an assassination. 

Hamad: Hamas, PA working to reopen Rafah
2/17/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - The de facto government in the Gaza Strip is holding contacts with the Ramallah-based government and others to reopen the Rafah crossing, an official said on Tuesday. Ghazi Hamad, head of crossings authority in Gaza, said Egypt, the Red Cross, and the UN were involved in ongoing talks to return the crossing to normal operations. At a news conference in Gaza City, Hamad said an agreement could be reached between the Gaza government and Ramallah. According to Hamad, 70 to 100 patients leave Gaza through the Erez crossing with Israel every day, while the Kerem Shalom and Karni crossings allow limited amounts of goods and humanitarian aid into Gaza weekly. "Several parties have suggested that Gaza and Ramallah form a joint police force to monitor the Rafah crossing," Hamad said. "This was discussed with Prime Minister Isma'il Haniyeh, and he agreed. Another option would be for the Palestinian presidential guards and European monitors to resume monitoring. " . . . . 

Students to shut down Al-Quds University
2/16/2010 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - The Student Senate at Al-Quds University in East Jerusalem declared a shutdown of the school, effective Tuesday, amid mounting strife over financial aid. A communiqué from the Student Senate on Monday night said classes at the Abu Dis campus would be "suspended until further notice. "The declaration pinned blame for the strike on the administration and urged "all parties to quickly resolve the crisis that threatens the future of the educational process at Al-Quds University. " The student body accused the administration of "ignoring the demands of the students in regard to issues of grants and exemptions, postponements and other academic issues. "Ma'an's repeated phone calls to university officials for a response went unanswered. The strike comes after student groups accused the Palestinian Authority's Ministry of Education of unilaterally converting. . . . 

Zahhar: Progress on Hamas-Fatah reconciliation imminent
2/16/2010 - Gaza - Ma'an - A Palestinian reconciliation agreement could be signed within a few days under Egyptian supervision, senior Hamas official Mahmoud Az-Zahhar announced Monday night. Following a celebration of educational institutions in Gaza City, Zahhar told reporters, "It is obvious that Egypt understands. . . that the Egyptian reconciliation document needs amendment. I expect the issue to be reconsidered and a signing to be secured. "The reconciliation process broke down during the fall when Hamas said the final unity document drafted by Egypt did not include several points that had been agreed on during talks. Party representatives insisted on making amendments to the agreement before they would sign it. Egypt never responded officially to the request to change the paper, and Fatah members signed the deal amid a government debacle at the UN Human Rights Commission. 

Sources: Fayyad to reshuffle cabinet
2/16/2010 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Caretaker Prime Minister Salam Fayyad will dismiss members of his cabinet in the wake of a corruption scandal shaking the Ramallah-based Palestinian government, sources said on Tuesday. Officials said President Mahmoud Abbas approved Fayyad's recommendations at a cabinet meeting on Monday, which Abbas chaired, and offered Interior Minister Said Abu Ali the position of chief of staff. Abu Ali, however, has since denied knowledge of the offer. Meanwhile, the same sources said "more than one" cabinet member will be replaced in the coming shakeup, most likely Justice Minister Khashan Ali, Education Minister Lamis Al-Alami, and Agriculture Minister Ismail Deiq. However, no new portfolios were immediately announced, and the PA has refused to officially confirm its plans to reshuffle not only the. . . 

Nablus police detain escaped murder suspect near Jerusalem
2/16/2010 - Nablus - Ma'an - Palestinian police in Nablus arrested a man wanted for murder following a Monday night pursuit, officials said. The suspect, from Beita village in the northern West Bank, was detained by police in Anata, west of Jerusalem, the public relations department in Hebron said. The alleged killer, wanted since 2001, is suspected of shooting his sister's husband over a family dispute. He had been detained during the initial investigation but escaped when Israeli forces bombed the police headquarters in an attack during the second Intifada. A police statement said of the situation that "After the era of security chaos ended, and security began to stabilize, police started chasing the killer until they finally discovered he was hiding in Anata, near Jerusalem, where he was arrested. " . . . . 

Jawwal lowers costs for calls in Jordan
2/17/2010 - Ramallah - Ma'an - The Palestinian telecommunications company Jawwal says it will decrease costs of calls for subscribers using the mobile giant's services in Jordan. The rate will be lowered to. 89 shekels per month, Jawwal said in a statement to Ma'an. "All Palestinians in Jordan will soon receive a message informing them about the costs of calls to Palestinians, in an effort to encourage communication free of prohibitive costs," the statement said. Jawwal has faced increased competition since the launch of rival Wataniya mobile last fall, but has maintained its hold on the Palestinian market, which has also been penetrated by Israeli mobile companies. [end] 

Hebron: Firm plans pink women-only taxis
2/16/2010 - Hebron - Ma'an - A Palestinian company is planning to bring women-only taxis - a phenomenon already popular in Beirut and elsewhere - to the conservative West Bank city of Hebron. Hazem At-Takrawi, the director of the Ishraqat training and development firm, said on Monday that his company is already training women to drive the female-only cabs. As in Beirut, the cars would be pink, he told anchor Adel Eghraieb on the television show "On the Table. " Asked whether Hebron and Palestinians in general would accept the idea, At-Takrawi said the company already commissioned a survey that found that 95% of Palestinians would accept the new cabs. In addition, he said the program will create jobs, claiming that more than 100 women, mainly university graduates, already applied for positions as cabbies. At-Takrawi said that if the idea succeeds in Hebron, he will expand the business to other West Bank cities. 

Police seize expired milk, counterfeit pills at Hebron dairy
2/16/2010 - Hebron - Ma'an - Palestinian customs agents seized 700kg of spoiled dairy products and what specialists call counterfeit pills advertised as "sexual stimulants," during a raid in the Hebron-district town of Yatta on Tuesday. Chief of customs Hussam Khalayleh said officers discovered the goods during a regular inspection tour of commercial outlets alongside officials from the caretaker Ministry of the National Economy. Khalayeh said the shop was neither licensed as a dispensary nor were the pills brought into the area legally. He said the items were confiscated and the shop owner fined heavily. The find follows the Saturday discovery of at least 1 million similar pills, which Khaled Seder, Ministry of Health manager in Hebron, described as "not sexual stimulants; they are poisons. "The samples were sent to local labratories for inspection. 

Cheated: PA trade union head details permit fraud
2/16/2010 - Nablus - Ma'an - Thousands of Palestinians hoping to gain work and higher wages in Israel were duped over the last three years by a gang of Israelis and Palestinians selling forged permits, Secretary-General of the Palestinian Trade Union Shahir Sa'd said Tuesday. The scam was routed Sunday when Israeli police detained dozens of alleged gang members. The undercover investigation was carried out over a number of months under Commander Dorit Ben-Meir, the Israeli news site Ynet reported at the time. According to the report, 23 Israelis and 11 Palestinians were involved in the scam. The head of the operation was identified as a high-profile Israeli security officer working in the Civil Administration offices, Linda Salem, while her second in command was an Israeli working in the Ministry of the Interior, Mariah Hashash, Sa'd said. 

Ha'aretz Defense page

High Court orders state to speed up outpost demolitions
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - 16 homes in unauthorized West Bank outposts Hayovel, Harsha have been considered ilegal since 2005. 

Barak signals thaw in tensions with army chief Ashkenazi
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Defense Minister praises chief of staff, signaling end to row over extending Ashkenazi's term to fifth year. 

Nasrallah: 'If you hit Beirut airport, we'll hit Ben Gurion'
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Hezbollah leader threatens to attack Tel Aviv in future conflict; says group still seeks to avenge Mughniyeh. 

Who are the new Hamas recruits in Gaza?
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Many of 15,000 applicants have no interest in police work or in politics - they just are looking for jobs. 

Israelis warned of Hezbollah threat abroad
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Counterterrorism Bureau: Israelis could be target for revenge attacks over Mughniyeh, Iran scientist killings. 

Ex-IDF chief: Israel can't handle nuclear Iran alone
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Dan Halutz says Israel should not take it upon itself to be the flag-bearer of the West against Tehran. 

Egypt official: Israel assassination policy inflaming entire Mideast
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - PA source to London Times: Other countries won't agree to turn into Israel-Palestinian killing field. 

Gaza sources: Sole power plant to halt over Israel fuel blockade
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Ma'an report: Strip's officials appeal international groups, Arab nations to end ongoing electricity deficit. 

IDF thwarts knife attack on soldier in Hebron
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Palestinians: IDF kills two militants near Gaza; IDF soldiers on alert for Hamas kidnap attempts. 

Hamas: Next war with Israel will be regional conflict
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Political leader Meshal accuses Israel of making threats against Gaza, Syria and Lebanon. 

Is Israeli society strong enough to face the future?
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - At the base of Netanyahu's worldview is profound anxiety over Israel's fortitude in the face of external threats. 

Hundreds attend funeral of IDF officer killed in West Bank Attack
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Ihad Khatib, stabbed to death by a member of PA security, laid to rest in Druze community of Maghar. 

Shin Bet: We foiled Hamas attempt to abduct and kill Israeli soldier
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Israel arrested two Hamas men in Dec. who allegedly tried to murder soldier, perform terror attacks. 

IDF says jihadi terrorist killed in Gaza air strike
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Air force targets terror squad allegedly planning attack near Karni humanitarian aid crossing. 

Work starts to reroute West Bank security fence at Bil'in
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Newly routed barrier will hand 700,000 square meters of agricultural land back to Bil'in village. 

Palestinian policeman who killed soldier 'had personal problems'
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Israel general suggests suicidal motive for Wednesday's stabbing in West Bank. 

IDF twice raids Ramallah office of pro-Palestinian group
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Army confiscates computers, T-shirts and bracelets from International Solidarity Movement. 

West Bank attack victim Ihab Khatib 'had a heart of gold'
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Family describes victim's enthusiasm for service in the IDF, his desire to contribute. 


Video: Israeli settlement building continues
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - Israel is continuing to build illegal settlements on Palestinian land, despite a 10-month suspension of new construction announced by the government. Peace Now, an Israeli non-governmental organisation, says work is taking place at more than 30 settlements in the occupied West Bank. Nour Odeh reports from Beit Sahour...

Gaza's Female Scribes Face Worse Than Discrimination
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - Female journalists worldwide complain about discrimination on the grounds of gender. However, their colleagues in Gaza also face death threats, the dangers of working in a war zone and the struggle for daily necessities as the Israeli siege on Gaza drags on. Last year a shadowy group in Gaza calling itself 'Swords of Islam' threatened to...

Israel's new strategy: "sabotage" and "attack" the global justice movement
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - An extraordinary series of articles, reports and presentations by Israel's influential Reut Institute has identified the global movement for justice, equality and peace as an "existential threat" to Israel and called on the Israeli government to direct substantial resources to "attack" and possibly engage in criminal "sabotage" of this movement in what Reut believes are its...

"Joe Biden working for the Baathists..."
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - The above title is no joke. This is what W.Qanbar, a spokesman for the Iraqi National Alliance (INA), the grouping of the Shiites parties such as Muqtada Al-Sadr (the college drop out who recycled himself in drilling), Ammar A-Hakeem (the Shiite playboy and smuggler of the South, head of the notorious Badr Brigades) "Dr" Adel Abdul...

Israeli police conduct arrest among children in Silwan
Uruknet Tuesday, February 16, 2010 - Palestinian citizens in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan reported that Israeli police and the security intelligence services have escalated recently their campaign of arrest of Palestinian children in the area on throwing stones charges. Palestinians who neighbor Yonatan Building, where a group of extremist settlers live, reported that the police summons and arrest several children...

Shadowy and deadly - the long arm of the Mossad
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - Israel's Mossad secret service, more formally known as the Institute for Espionage and Special Tasks, has a long history of carrying out clandestine operations, including several spectacular assassinations. Much remains secret but cases that are documented have involved large teams of agents using false or stolen passports to disguise their Israeli origins. The Mossad's assassination unit...

Dubai suspects 'had fake passports'
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - Britain and Ireland have said that the passports used by nine people suspected of the killing of a senior Hamas figure in the United Arab Emirates are believed to be fake. The nine passport holders are alleged members of an 11-person hit squad which Dubai police have said that they want to question over the murder...

Children as young as 12 arrested in night raids in Silwan, East Jerusalem
Uruknet February 16, 2010 - B'Tselem recently uncovered a number of cases in which minors aged 12-15 from Silwan, in East Jerusalem, were arrested in the middle of the night by police officers and Israel Security Agency agents accompanied by armed border policemen. In four cases documented by B'Tselem, the minors were taken from their beds and homes and brought, their...

Uruknet February 16, 2010 - In Gaza's hospitals, one might see peculiar, near-alien looking objects in the maternity ward. Is this child human, or is it from another planet, escaped from some Hollywood movie? The answer will surprise you when a Palestinian mother says: This is my son! The Palestinian Ministry of Healthy in Gaza has issued several press releases concerning...

Defending Palestinian children: An interview with Rifat Kassis
Uruknet February 15, 2010 - Defence for Children International-Palestine Section aims to protect the rights of children and minors living in occupied Palestine. Rifat Kassis was elected as president of the executive council of Defence for Children International (DCI) in 2005 and is currently serving his second term. The Electronic Intifada contributor Adri Nieuwhof recently interviewed Kassis about DCI-PS's work and...

Three Villages In The Hebron Hills
Uruknet February 15, 2010 - Settler violence. Drought. Tension with the Israeli military. Poverty. Palestinians in the Hebron Hills have seen their fair share of problems. The Palestine Monitor highlights the current situations in three villages located in the Hebron Hills. All photographs were taken by Brady Ng. At’tuwani is a small village southeast of Hebron in the West Bank. With...

PFLP hosts national unity meeting of all factions in Gaza
Uruknet February 15, 2010 - The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine hosted a meeting of all national and Islamic forces, including representatives of Fateh and Hamas, in its office in Gaza City, on February 14, 2010. This meeting was the first of its kind to take place in Gaza since the internal division. The objective of the meeting was...

Palestine Telegraph

Israeli vehicle hits Palestinian in Sheikh Jarrah
Jerusalem, February 16, 2010 (Pal Telegraph) - A vehicle that belongs to the municipality of Jerusalem hit a Palestinian citizen Tuesday during protests in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah. The vehicle was there to help demolish the tent of the Al-Ghaoui family, who had been evicted from their home by settlers. The family has been forced from their...

IOF raids central Gaza
Gaza Strip, February 16, 2010 (Pal Telegraph)- Israeli occupation forces carried out an incursion in the afternoon in the central Gaza Strip. According to local sources, 6 Israeli military vehicles, accompanied by three armored bulldozers, penetrated approximately 300 meters east of Deir al-Balah in central Gaza. The sources added that the Israeli vehicles and bulldozers began combing the area and...

Israel opens Karem Abu Salem Crossing
Gaza Strip, February 16, 2010 (Pal Telegraph)- Israeli occupation authorities opened on Tuesday Karem Abu Salem crossing to allow the entry of food aid and limited amounts of industrial fuel to the Gaza Strip, while kept the Karni crossing closed. Raed Fattouh, a Palestinian crossings official liaison, said that Israeli authorities will allow the entry of 72-82 trucks through the...

IOF invades 2 towns in Hebron
Hebron, February 16, 2010 (Pal Telegraph) - Israeli occupation forces raided on Tuesday Seir and Al-Shouokh towns, and a house in the old town of Hebron in the West Bank. Local sources said that a number of Israeli military troops raided the towns in early morning, and they roamed their neighborhoods before withdrawing from the towns. The sources did not...

Israeli official: Israel continues building settlements
Jerusalem, February 15, 2010 (Pal Telegraph)- Matan Vilnai, Israel's deputy defense minister, said: "construction in 29 Jewish settlements in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem continues despite the 10-month freeze decision." Vilnai stated in remarks published in The Jerusalem Post on Monday that this statement came in his response to a question from the leader of Meretz, Haim Oron, in the...

The National

Clinton calls Iran 'largest supporter of terrorism'
The National 16 Feb 2010 - The US secretary of state says the evidence doesn't support Iran's claim its nuclear programme is peaceful. 

Egyptian council defends ban on female justices
The National 16 Feb 2010 - The State Council, the body that recommended barring women from sitting on one of Egypt's highest judicial bodies, say its only a matter of time before women take positions.

Sectarian clashes in Lebanon raise fears
The National 16 Feb 2010 - At least one person is reported killed and several wounded in a series of clashes between Islamist groups and Fatah authorities in Lebanon's largest Palestinian refugee camp.

The Media Line

High Profile U.S. Trade Mission Heading to Libya 
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - U.S. companies to travel to Libya with hopes of tapping growing Libyan market. A large and high profile U.S. trade delegation due to arrive in Libya in February is signaling a further thawing of Libyan-American relations....

Abbas Suspends Official Accused of Sex Scandal
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - Palestinian leader sets up inquiry to investigate corruption allegations. Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas suspended one of his top advisors on Sunday following the official's implication in a sex scandal. Abbas's political advisor Rafiq Al-Husseini has...

Afghan Drug Trade Affronted by Unlikely Partners: Iran and U.S. 
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - Iranian efforts to seal its borders to the insurgent Afghan drug trade is being aided by the allied offensive in Afghanistan, but experts say success may be limited. Taliban forces and Afghan drug lords are facing...

Vice President Biden to Visit Middle East
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is set to visit the Middle East next week, stopping at Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel. This will be the first visit to Israel by the vice president since the...

Threatened Sunni Boycott Undermines Iraqi Elections 
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - A Shi'ite-led purge of Sunni candidates has spurred threats of a boycott of next month's crucial national elections in Iraq by its Sunni political leadership. An Iraqi judicial appeals committee agreed to reinstate just 100 out...

Russia Says It Won't Cancel S-300 Missile Sale to Iran 
The Media Line 14 Feb 2010 - The Kremlin has announced that it will not cancel a deal for the sale of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles to Iran on the grounds that these were defensive weapons and therefore not subject to international sanctions. "There...


Deadly fighting in Lebanon camp
AlJazeera 15 Feb 2010 - Woman killed in clashes between rival groups in Ain al-Helweh Palestinian refugee camp.

Dubai suspects 'had fake passports'
AlJazeera 16 Feb 2010 - Documents belonging to alleged killers of Hamas figure were falsified, officials say. 

Iran 'still open to nuclear deal'
AlJazeera 16 Feb 2010 - Iran's president says ready for "fair" nuclear fuel swap, warning West against sanctions.

Alternative Information Center

War of the Colorful City
Alternative Information Center 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, South Tel Aviv has become the primary area of life for the migrant workers—which causes fury and grievances amongst the veteran residents of the area. However, there is a way in which...

The Rising Phoenix of Israel's Assassination Policy
Alternative Information Center 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, The assassination of Hamas leader Mahmud Abdel Rauf al-Mabhuh in Dubai on 20 January raised concerns in the region about Israeli efforts to neutralize Palestinian activists. According to reports in the press,...

Displaced Persons: Arab-Jews, Arab-Palestinians, Mizrahis and Palestinian Refugees
Alternative Information Center 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, Documentation of the fourth meeting in the series “Meetings from the Dark Perspective,” the headline of which was “1948 Refugees: Mizrahi Perspectives.” A panel discussion with Ilan Halevi, Kochavi Shemesh, Nizar Hassan...

Jerusalem Post

'Administration has learned lessons'
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Conference hears that Israel to question if Abbas really wants to talk. 

PM: Israel not planning war with Iran
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Teheran is just concerned over new sanctions, Netanyahu says at end of Moscow trip. 

PM: Israel to erect Red Army memorial 
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Netanyahu tells Putin gesture to commemorate crucial role in victory over Nazis. 

Hotovely: Gran West Bank Palestinians citizenship
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Rightist Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely came out in support of granting Israeli citizenship to the Arab population of Judea and Samaria. 

Dubai assassins used names of UK olim
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Six British passport holders named by Dubai cops as Hamas chief assassins have same names as Israeli immigrants. 

Muslims planned Mamilla project in '45
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Wiesenthal Center accuses Museum of Tolerance opponents of hypocrisy after clipping from "The Palestine Post" found. 

Israel to use 'ordinary' people for PR
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Asked whether they would want to help represent Israel when they were abroad, 85% said “yes.” 

Partners against Iran
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - Mullen's visit underlined Washington’s intensifying effort to keep closely coordinated with Israel. 

Mullen to IDF Haiti delegation: Humanity is proud of you
Jeruslalem Post 16 Feb 2010 - "The important work you did will not be forgotten," says chairman of US Joint Chiefs of Staff. 

Inter Press Service

US-YEMEN: Clinton Hails Ceasefire, But Aid Concerns Remain 
IPS WASHINGTON, Feb 15 (IPS) - The ceasefire announced late last week between Yemen's government and Houthi rebels in the northern part of the country is being greeted here as an important initial step toward stabilising the Arab world's poorest country and reversing advances by al Qaeda's affiliate there.

MIDEAST: Gaza's Female Scribes Face Worse Than Discrimination 
IPS RAMALLAH, Feb 15 (IPS) - Female journalists worldwide complain about discrimination on the grounds of gender. However, their colleagues in Gaza also face death threats, the dangers of working in a war zone and the struggle for daily necessities as the Israeli siege on Gaza drags on.

MIDEAST: Telling Film Floats Between Art and the Actual 
IPS JERUSALEM, Feb 15 (IPS) - An Oscar nominee for best foreign-language film, Israel's 'Ajami', is a tragic, yet realistic, pointer to the multi-layered conflict of Jews and Arabs, Israelis and Palestinians.

EGYPT: Press Freer, but Still Fettered 
IPS CAIRO, Feb 14 (IPS) - Not long ago an editorial like the one that appeared in the independent Al- Dustour newspaper this week might never have made it into print.

PCHR Weekly Report

Weekly Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
PCHR Israeli soldiers arrest a Palestinian civilians during clashes in Shu'fat refugee camp near Jerusalem 04 – 10 February 2010 Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Continue Systematic Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) 

International Solidarity Movement

Violent Zionists Tour Sheikh Jarrah
2/15/2010 - International Solidarity Movement - 14 February - At approximately 1 pm today, roughly 20 Zionist tourists entered the yard of the occupied al-Kurd home in Sheikh Jarrah as part of a settlement promotion tour. Verbally harassing both Palestinian residents and Internationals and attempting to block their cameras,  tourists listened as a guide expounded upon the religious claims which Zionists use to justify the eviction of Palestinians from their homes. After concluding with song, the tourists passed through the gate  as several verbally attacked Palestinians present. 85-year-old Rifqa al-Kurd was roughly pushed while observing the visitors. Upon crossing the street to view the Gawi home, a particularly violent woman verbally attacked an ISM activist, flinging the activist's camera several meters into the air. Although intentionally provocative Zionist tours are nothing new in. . . 

Sheikh Jarrah woman arrested as far-right MK tours settler-occupied homes
2/14/2010 - International Solidarity Movement - Sheikh Jarrah resident, 45 year old Fatima Diab was arrested by Israeli police on Saturday evening, February 13, following the provocative appearance of far-right Knesset member Micheal Bin Ari at the Al-Gawi home in solidarity with the extremist settlers occupying the house. Diab was released on a bail of 2000 shekels following an appearance in Jerusalem District Court on February 14. Tensions were raised in the neighbourhood as MK Bin Ari arrived around 7pm, entering the occupied Al-Gawi house to inspect the state of the settler takeover, accompanied by heightened settler and police presence. Shouting broke out as Bin Ari exited the stolen home, with settlers and Palestinian residents exchanging taunts. Diab, who stood in the crowd, flicked water on Bin Ari as he walked to his car, causing police to immediately demand that she accompany them to the police station for questioning. 

Ha'aretz Diplomacy page

Five Israelis wake up as named 'Dubai assassins'
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - British sources say Irish passport-holders on Dubai's suspect list are probably Israeli Mossad. 

Amir Oren / Following alleged Dubai mess, the Mossad chief must go
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - This is not the first time the Mossad has not been careful to avoid diplomatic crises with allied countries. 

Netanyahu lobbies Russians for ancient Hebrew texts
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Russian officials will 'positively consider' returning Guenzberg collection with over 16,000 items. 

U.S. envoy to return to Syria after five-year absence
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - White House: Obama has nominated career diplomat Robert Ford, in bid to strengthen ties with Syria. 

Israel has nothing to worry about
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Without dramatic evidence to prove Israeli connection, Mossad will emerge unscathed, like pros should. 

At least five Israelis 'share names with Dubai hit squad suspects'
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Photo of 'Melvyn Adam Mildiner' released by Dubai does not match that of U.K.-born Israeli. 

Hamas man's Dubai death was a Mossad-style execution
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Assassins arrived on separate flights, stayed in different hotels and entered the target's room using keys. 

White House refuses to rule out military option on Iran
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - U.S., Russia and France warn UN that Iran is 'escalating' nuclear standoff. 

Netanyahu in Moscow: Israel not planning war
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Prime Minister responds to Iranian claims that his government is eyeing a 'spring or summer offensive'. 

A Jewish Journal of Ideas Is Born
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - The Jewish Review of Books to focus on Jewish literary and political affairs; the magazine is funded by an endowment established by the late Zalman Bernstein. 

Watchdog: Iran arrested 90 journalists in 2009
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Committee to Protect Journalists says Iran conducting one of the world's severest media crackdowns. 

Ireland confirms 'Irish' Dubai killers don't exist
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - U.K. sources: 'Irish' assassins likely Mossad agents; Jordan confirms extraditing two Palestinians to UAE. 

Israel should heed Obama's warning not to strike Iran
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Israel can't go to war without intelligence, military equipment and diplomatic support from the U.S. 

Latin American Jews are now following each other on Twitter
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - UJCL recently broadcast its 12th biennial convention live online using twitter feeds, marking it the first Jewish event in Latin America to do so. 

Why should Israel care what the rest of the world thinks?
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - It is increasingly apparent that in order to survive, Israel must pay heed and recognize the new Zionist realism. 

The Guardian

Dubai murder: anger of accused
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - British man named as suspect in Mahmoud al-Mabhouh killing says ordeal has left him 'angry, upset and scared' Three British men who today found themselves named as some of the assassins suspected of killing Mahmoud al-Mabhouh...

Dubai murder: fake identities, disguised faces and a clinical assassination
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - CCTV appears to show sophisticated operation behind killing of Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh As soon as Mahmoud al-Mabhouh walked out into the foyer of Dubai International Airport at 3.17pm, the foreign assassins had latched on to...

Dubai killers stole identities of UK citizens
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - Real British nationals named among suspects deny role in murder of Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh A hit squad that murdered a senior Hamas official in Dubai used the stolen identities of six British citizens and faked...

Hamas murder suspects 'used forged British passports'
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - Six out of 11-strong hit squad wanted over Dubai hotel killing were using fake passports and are not UK nationals, say officials British officials said today that the British passports used by six suspects in the...

The silence of Israel's liberals | Carlo Strenger
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - The gulf between the country's cultural and political life will continue to widen unless the left wakes from its paralysis It is not a pleasant experience to look at Israel's image in the world nowadays, to...

Video: Dubai hit-squad suspects caught on CCTV
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - Police have shown footage of some of the 11 Europeans suspected of killing Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

Members of hit squad suspected of killing Hamas man 'had UK passports'
The Guardian 16 Feb 2010 - Dubai police says 11 people, including one woman, are wanted over hotel murder Six members of an 11-strong hit squad suspected of killing a senior Hamas military commander in Dubai entered the country using British passports,...

British journalist detained in Gaza
The Guardian 15 Feb 2010 - Documentary film-maker Paul Martin was due to testify on behalf of man accused of collaborating with Israel Hamas officials said today that they have detained a British freelance journalist. Documentary film-maker Paul Martin was detained yesterday...

Hillary Clinton: 'Iran is moving towards a military dictatorship'
The Guardian 15 Feb 2010 - US secretary of state steps up war of words against Tehran, calling on regime to rethink 'dangerous' nuclear policy Hillary Clinton today said Iran was becoming a military dictatorship as the Obama administration's diplomatic campaign against...

Talk to Hamas | Arik Diamant and David Zonsheine
The Guardian 15 Feb 2010 - As Israeli soldiers we hang our heads in shame over last year's attack on Gaza's civilian population. Dialogue, not war, is needed The Israeli media marked the one-year anniversary of Operation Cast Lead , the war on...

Ha'aretz National page

Aluf Benn / Israel's future relies on integrating Arabs and Haredim 
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - The answer to the question of where this country is headed is hidden in table 8.11 of Israel's annual Statistical Abstract, which shows "Projections of Students in Primary Education" for the coming five years. These are the figures: In the current school year, 47.5 percent of first-graders are either Arabs or Haredim (ultra-Orthodox). The growth rate of the Haredi school system is 39 times greater than that of the state secular schools, and that of the Arab school system is 13 times greater. These are not demographic forecasts, which can turn out to be false; these are children who have already been born and are awaiting their turn in the education system. This is reality. ... 

Hundreds flock to show support for embattled rabbi 
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Hundreds of supporters gathered at the home of Rabbi Mordechai Elon yesterday morning to show their support for the embattled rabbi, who had been accused the day before of inappropriate sexual behavior by a forum of senior religious figures. ... 

Tel Aviv panel to meet today on plan to widen Kakal St. by expropriating yards 
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - Tel Aviv's municipal planning and construction committee will meet today to discuss the possibility of expropriating land from the yards of homes on Keren Kayemet (Kakal) St. for the sake of broadening the busy thoroughfare. ... 

The Kennedys of the religious Zionist camp 
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - The Elon family, a member of the religious Zionist elite, is entrenched in the world of law, politics and halakha (Jewish religious law). The roots of the dynasty are in Dusseldorf, Germany. A year before the Nazi rise to power, the family fled to the Netherlands and from there to Israel. ... 

CEO's son hired to design Holocaust asset group's new office 
Ha'aretz 16 Feb 2010 - An internal inquiry conducted by the Company for Restitution of Holocaust Victims Assets has revealed that the group chose an architectural firm linked to its chief executive's son to help the government-run organization relocate its headquarters. ... 

Relief Web

Calm restored at Lebanon refugee camp after clash 
Relief Web 16 Feb 2010 - Source: Agence France-Presse

Serious Concern Voiced at Prolonged Paralysis of Peace Process, as International Meeting in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace Concludes in Malta
Relief Web 16 Feb 2010 - Source: UN General Assembly

United States, Russian Federation Delegates Urge Resumption of Talks, At International Meeting in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace
Relief Web 16 Feb 2010 - Source: UN General Assembly

COMMISSION DECISION of on the approval and financing of a Global Plan for humanitarian Actions in the Middle East from the general budget of the European Union ECHO/-ME/BUD/2010/01000
Relief Web 16 Feb 2010 - Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department

Quarter of Israeli settlements violate building ban: group
Relief Web 15 Feb 2010 - Source: Agence France-Presse

Two killed in Lebanon refugee camp clashes
Relief Web 15 Feb 2010 - Source: Agence France-Presse

YNet News

UK investigating if passports were copied by immigration staff 
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - British Foreign Office confirms identities in passports used by Hamas man's assassins in Dubai are those of real British nationals. Germany, France also looking into passports of two of killers. Report: Syrian source provided assassins with information about al-Mabhouh 

Life of 6-year-old from Haiti in danger
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - Woodley Elysee, who landed in Israel together with IDF aid mission to Haiti, undergoes surgery to repair heart defect, however sudden hemorrhage leaves him in critical condition. Doctors from all fields turn up in effort to save his life 

Dahlan: Israel waging war on Abbas 
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - Senior Fatah official accuses Jewish state of 'seeking more anarchy in order to destroy what is left of PA'. Meanwhile, Palestinian prime minister dismisses three ministers, appoints interior minister instead of Abbas' bureau chief 

Nasrallah threatens to attack Ben-Gurion Airport 
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - Hezbollah secretary-general says 'Israel needs no excuse' to attack Lebanon. 'If you destroy buildings in Dahiya – we will destroy buildings in Tel Aviv,' Nasrallah warns. He slams US President Obama, who he says cannot help Lebanon as he has failed in stopping settlements 

Israeli 'assassin': I was never in Mossad
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - Melvyn Adam Mildiner, originally from UK, tells Ynet was surprised to discover his name, on passport of suspect in Hamas man's assassination in Dubai. Two other Israeli citizens with similar backgrounds find their names in online media reports 

Netanyahu: Israel not planning war with Iran
YNet News 16 Feb 2010 - Speaking in Moscow, prime minister says Tehran's concerns over conflict are result of threat of additional international sanctions. Putin promises him to build museum dedicated to Nazi extermination of millions of Jews in Holocaust 


Jerusalem police arrests minors in the middle of the night
15 Feb 2010 - An investigation by B'Tselem has revealed a few cases in which minors aged 12-15, residents of Silwan, East Jerusalem, were unlawfully arrested in the middle of the night and taken, their hands cuffed, for interrogation on suspicion of stone throwing. Tes

Daily Star

Ahmadinejad says Iran will retaliate against any new sanctions
Daily Star 16 Feb 2010 TEHRAN: President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Tuesday any country that tried to impose new sanctions on Iran would regret its actions, as the United States and Russia voiced shared concern about Tehran's nuclear program. Ahmadinejad was speaking a day after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sought oil giant Saudi Arabia's support to help win Chinese backing for additional sanctions.

Clinton vows to use clout for Mideast peace
Daily Star 16 Feb 2010 JEDDAH: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged on Tuesday to use "whatever methods and influence" it has with both Israelis and Palestinians to achieve peace, saying the time has come for a settlement. "We are absolutely committed to do everything we can to get both sides into negotiations and get those negotiations to a successful conclusion," the chief US diplomat told students at a women's college in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Iran's human-rights council head backs opposition right to protest
Daily Star 16 Feb 2010 GENEVA: Iran's top human rights official said Monday that anti-government protests should be allowed in his country because they are "natural" for a democratic state. The comments stand in stark contrast to Tehran's efforts to crack down on opposition groups protesting the outcome of last year's presidential polls. Hundreds of people have been arrested and dozens killed in street clashes between protesters.

Dubai seeks global dragnet for Hamas slaying
Daily Star 16 Feb 2010 DUBAI, United Arab Emirates: Dubai police appealed for an international manhunt Tuesday after releasing names and photos of an alleged 11-member hit squad accused of stalking and killing a Hamas commander last month in a plot that mixed cold precision with spy caper disguises such as fake beards and wigs. Dubai authorities said they would seek assistance from the global police coordination agency Interpol.

Death toll in Maoist attack rises to 25Sailendra Sil
Daily Star 16 Feb 2010 KOLKATA, India: The death toll from a Maoist rebel attack on Indian police rose to 25 on Tuesday after more bodies were found in a ravaged security camp in the east of the country, police said. About 20 rebels riding motorcycles launched the assault in West Bengal state's restive Midnapore district late Monday, killing police in a hail of gunfire and exploding landmines which started fires.

Palestinian Information Center

Dubai police name eleven Europeans suspected of assassinating Mohammad al-Mbhouh
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - The Dubai police has announced the arrest of two Palestinians and published names of eleven Europeans suspected of involvement in the killing of Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Mabhouh.

Abu Halabiya: Israel started a new wave of serious violations against J’lem
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Dr. Ahmed Abu Halabiya said that there is a new wave of serious Israeli violations that started two weeks ago against the occupied city of Jerusalem, its people and holy sites.

IOA seeks to update information on new targets in Gaza
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - A Palestinian security source has warned that the IOA was trying to reform its net of agents in the Gaza Strip to refresh its information on targets to be hit in any future war.

Haneyya hopes reconciliation would be reached before Arab summit
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Palestinian premier Ismail Haneyya told a visiting delegation of Arab parliamentarians that he wished Palestinian reconciliation would be signed prior to the Arab summit scheduled for next month.

Hamad: Crossings a humanitarian issue
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Dr. Ghazi Hamad, the head of the Palestinian authority of borders and crossings, said Tuesday that the closure of crossings increases the suffering of Gaza people.

Syrian MP: The destruction in Gaza surpassed what the Nazis did
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Syrian lawmaker Mohamed Al-Zoghbi said Tuesday that the size of destruction which the Arab parliamentary delegation saw in Gaza exceeded all expectations and surpassed what the Nazis did.

IOF soldiers detain 3 Palestinians after wounding them in northern Gaza
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Israeli occupation forces (IOF) detained three Palestinian citizens north of the Gaza Strip after shooting and wounding them, local sources reported.

Khudari urges visiting Arab MPs to provide all kinds of support for Gazans
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - MP Jamal Al-Khudari stressed the importance of the visit made by Arab lawmakers and called for providing political, financial and spiritual support for Gaza people to strengthen their steadfastness.

Shabana threatens a bombshell against Abbas, PA officials
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Fahmi Shabana Al-Tamimi, the Palestinian intelligence officer, has threatened Tuesday to drop a bomb shell that would block Mahmoud Abbas's participation in the upcoming Arab summit.

Nazzal: Libya mediating between Hamas and Fatah
PIC 16 Feb 2010 - Mohammed Nazzal has disclosed that the Libyan leadership had started mediating between his Movement and Fatah faction to forge a Palestinian national reconciliation prior to the Arab summit.

Los Angeles Times

Iran moving toward military dictatorship, Clinton says 
LA Times 16 Feb 2010 - The secretary of State, speaking in Qatar, says sanctions against the Islamic Republic must be aimed at the Revolutionary Guard, which she warns is supplanting the government. Bluntly warning that Iran is sliding into military dictatorship, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told an audience in Qatar on Monday that economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic should be increasingly aimed at its elite Revolutionary Guard. 

Selling a piece of Palestinian Main Street 
LA Times 16 Feb 2010 - A new private equity fund hopes to raise cash to invest in small and medium-sized businesses in the territories. Is the West Bank ready for Wall Street? 

New York Times

As Saudi Women Meet Clinton, No Talk of Rights
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - The students declined the secretary of state’s invitation to raise questions about women’s rights at the site of an exchange with a Bush administration official in 2005. 

Clinton Issues Another Warning to Iran
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - At the end of a regional visit, the secretary of state said that Iran’s program might set off a nuclear arms race. 

New Hints of Skulduggery in Hamas Killing
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - New questions have emerged about the identities of the assassins of a Hamas official in Dubai in January. 

'Avatar' on the West Bank
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - Last week protesters in the West Bank painted themselves blue and wore loinclothes, pointy ears and tails to make themselves look like characters from the film "Avatar" for a demonstration against the security barrier Israel is building near the village of Bilin. 

Assassins of Hamas Official Caught on Tape, Dubai Says
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - The Dubai police released video they say shows 11 members of an assassination team at work last month in the hours leading up to the killing of a Hamas official in a luxury hotel. 

News Analysis: U.S. Encounters Limits of Iran Engagement Policy
New York Times 16 Feb 2010 - White House officials say they have not abandoned President Obama’s pledge of engagement, but they are beginning to acknowledge some of the policy’s limits. 


Hollywood Lands In Jenin
Palestine Monitor - 16 Feb 2010 - Jenin's grand old cinema has been shut down and neglected for more than twenty years, since the start of the first Intifada. This idea to renovate came from Marcus Vetter, the famous German film-maker, who was awarded the ‘Cinema for Peace' award last year for his...

Israeli soldiers fire rubber bullets at journalists in East Jerusalem
Mondoweiss - 16 Feb 2010 - We aim to track reports that Israeli society is toughening, it is exhibiting growing intolerance of dissent, debate, and sunlight. Here is a report at a UN site about an incident last week in which Israeli soldiers fired upon journalists who were covering raids in the...

‘Birthright’ veteran says the debauchery produced dubiety
Mondoweiss - 16 Feb 2010 - Apparently Birthright enrollment closes tomorrow, the free trip to Israel for American Jews between 18 and 26. And in the University of Wisconsin newspaper, Steven Horn critiques the program. He went last summer and says, yes, he had a great time; Birthright made sure that "Israel...

‘Osama prays every night for a war between the West and Iran’
Mondoweiss - 16 Feb 2010 - Went to see Jean-Pierre Filiu, author of “The Nine Lives of Al Qaeda” speak at the New American Foundation . Filiu a professor at Sciences Po in Paris, is a thin sensitive-looking man who devotes much of his life to studying communications and strategies of the amorphous...

Divestment campaign gains traction at U of Arizona
Mondoweiss - 16 Feb 2010 - Divestment is biting at the University of Arizona. Several articles about the campaign in the student newspaper. Here’s the lead : UA administrators are resisting a recommendation by UA students to terminate the university’s contract with the Motorola Corporation. Students say the company is complicit in human...

Right to Return to the Middle East
Alternative Information Center - 16 Feb 2010 - Friday, 12 February 2010, Many years ago, my friend Rachel showed me a photograph of a transit camp in the center of Israel and a picture of a refugee camp in Jordan, and asked me to distinguish between them. I couldn’t. The tents were the same...

Right of Return and Israeli Democracy
Alternative Information Center - 16 Feb 2010 - Friday, 12 February 2010, The comprehensive Israeli veto of discussion about the right of return of Palestinian refugees exposes democracy and human rights as tools intended to protect the discriminatory nature of the ethnic society in Israel. The perception according to which the power of democracy...

The Rising Phoenix of Israel's Assassination Policy
Alternative Information Center - 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, The assassination of Hamas leader Mahmud Abdel Rauf al-Mabhuh in Dubai on 20 January raised concerns in the region about Israeli efforts to neutralize Palestinian activists. According to reports in the press, al-Mabhuh was injected with a drug to induce heart failure. Smadar...

Displaced Persons: Arab-Jews, Arab-Palestinians, Mizrahis and Palestinian Refugees
Alternative Information Center - 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, Documentation of the fourth meeting in the series “Meetings from the Dark Perspective,” the headline of which was “1948 Refugees: Mizrahi Perspectives.” A panel discussion with Ilan Halevi, Kochavi Shemesh, Nizar Hassan and Shiko Behar*. The meeting was conducted in Tel Aviv,...

War of the Colorful City
Alternative Information Center - 16 Feb 2010 - Monday, 15 February 2010, South Tel Aviv has become the primary area of life for the migrant workers—which causes fury and grievances amongst the veteran residents of the area. However, there is a way in which both sides can cooperate on a joint struggle. Some hear...


Questioning our special relationship with Israel 
Stephanie Westbrook, Ma’an News Agency 2/16/2010
      A "regional economic power." That’s how ANIMA, the Euro-Mediterranean Network of Investment Promotion Agencies encompassing 70 governmental agencies and international networks, described Israel in its January 2010 Mediterranean Investment Map.
     The report analyzed the economies of the 27 European Union countries as well as nine "partner countries."
     And who can argue. Touting an annual GDP growth rate around 5% for the years 2004 to 2008, Israel was also ranked 27 out of 132 countries in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report last fall. It ranked 9th for innovative capacity.
     In the 2008 World Competitiveness Yearbook by IMD, Israel comes in second for the number of scientists and engineers in the workforce. No other country in the world spends more on research and development as a percentage of GDP than Israel. Since the year 2000 it has hovered around 4.5%, or twice the average of OECD member countries.
     I am not an economist, but I have to wonder why US taxpayers are doling out $3 billion a year in direct military aid to a "regional economic power." In August 2007, a Memorandum of Understanding between the US and Israel was signed committing the US to give, not loan, $30 billion to Israel over 10 years. US taxpayers are directly funding close to 20% of Israel’s annual defense budget. No wonder Israel is able to invest in R&D!
     To help put these figures into perspective, a new website was launched last week that illustrates how your state is contributing to the Israeli defense budget, and what could have instead been done with the money. At I learned that my home state of Texas will give more than $2.5 billion over the ten-year period. For the same amount, over 2 million people could have been provided with primary health care.
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The New McCarthyism Sweeping Israel 
Donald Macintyre in Jerusalem, The Independent 2/13/2010
      To disagree with the state is to ‘delegitimise’ the state: that is the increasingly strident response of the country’s political and military establishment to those who dare to criticise its conduct.
     It’s hard, sitting on the other side of the office table from which Naomi Chazan is picking at her modest hummus and salad snack lunch, to believe that the amiable 63-year-old university professor with a self-deprecating sense of humour has suddenly become the most discussed, not to say demonised, woman in Israel. Ms Chazan is president of a long-established agency with large numbers of Jewish donors in the US and Britain, which is committed to fighting for “social justice and equality for all Israelis”. The New Israel Fund has over the last 30 years disbursed some $200m to around 800 charitable, social and human rights groups, and justly claims much of the credit for building modern Israel’s still vibrant civil society.
     But in the last fortnight the former Knesset member who by her own account loves her native Israel “without reservation” has been sacked as a columnist on the Jerusalem Post after 14 years, had rowdy demonstrators outside her house brandishing a chilling caricature of her with a horn obtruding from her forehead, and most far-fetched of all, been accused, in a newspaper article circulated to foreign journalists by the Government Press Office, of “serving the agenda of Iran and Hamas”.
     The onslaught has prompted Nicholas Saphir, the Jewish businessman who runs the New Israel Fund in the UK, to warn that the “Jewish values of social justice and our duty to tikkun olam (repairing the world) have come under serious threat in the state of Israel”.
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From Gaza To Barcelona ~~ From The Darkness To The Light 
Ayman Quader, Desert Peace 2/14/2010
      There are incredible feelings passing through my body these days in Spain. In Gaza, there were basically three feelings I had, one was happiness, another was hope, and the third was worry. In Gaza where my studies started, worry was the biggest feeling. Worry of where it will all lead to. I was fortunate that it eventually led to Spain where I am being supported by really good people who are concerned about my cause. Hope is now the predominant feeling, hope that the light would come.
     I am personally gratified for my new situation in Spain. I am gratified that so many people helped me get out of Gaza and engaged in the media campaign that took place. However, there are 500 other Aymans in the Gaza Strip in the same situation that I was in. They are being deprived of their basic right to an education, a right that is protected by UN agreements and resolutions, but no longer respected or adhered to. It is a great tragedy to think that the other 500 Aymans need a special media campaign to get them out as well.
     Aside from education, the Gaza Strip has been experiencing a siege where over 1.5 million people are deprived of their basic rights. Last night I took a break from celebrating with my new friends to call my father. It was ten in the evening. He informed me that they were now in total darkness as the power supply had been cut off. This was a result of the siege which prevented the necessary industrial fuel from entering the area. Just another example of the collective punishment that is being inflicted on an entire population.
     This should send an explicit message to the International Community to help put an end to the suffering of 1.5 million people and open the borders of Gaza. The siege must be ended! Palestinians must be given the chance to live their lives with pride and dignity. The inhumanity that is ting place in the Holy Land must come to a halt. The world must come to the realisation that we are all human beings with common interests.
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Israel's new strategy: "sabotage" and "attack" the global justice movement
Electronic Intifada: 16 Feb 2010 - Israel's influential Reut Institute has identified the global movement for justice and peace as an "existential threat" and called on the Israeli government to "attack" and possibly engage in criminal "sabotage" of this movement in what Reut believes are its various international "hubs" in London, Madrid, Toronto, the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. Ali Abunimah comments for The Electronic Intifada. 

Palestinians fight Jewish-only housing in Jaffa
Electronic Intifada: 16 Feb 2010 - Over the past few days graffiti scrawled on walls around the mixed Jewish and Arab town of Jaffa in central Israel exclaims: "Settlers, keep out" and "Jaffa is not Hebron." Although Jaffa is only a stone's throw from the bustling coastal metropolis of Tel Aviv, Arab residents say their neighborhood has become the unlikely battleground for an attempted takeover by extremist Jews more familiar from West Bank settlements. Jonathan Cook reports. 

E-book on Jewish National Fund's role in colonization of Palestine released
Electronic Intifada: 16 Feb 2010 - The Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign has published an e-book on the Jewish National Fund (JNF) that meets a need for an affordable introduction to the activities of the JNF, an organization supported financially by the British taxpayer but whose activities in Israel/ Palestine are politically-driven, and whose politics are nakedly racist. This little book reveals how a British charity works openly for the dispossession of Palestinian Arabs and the establishment of fully segregated Jewish-only communities and areas that exclude Arabs. 

Defending Palestinian children: An interview with Rifat Kassis
Electronic Intifada: 15 Feb 2010 - Defence for Children International-Palestine Section aims to protect the rights of children and minors living in occupied Palestine. The Electronic Intifada contributor Adri Nieuwhof recently interviewed director Rifat Kassis about DCI-PS's work and the special situation of Palestinian children growing up under occupation. 

how Israeli policies and attacks have ravaged Gaza’s agricultural sector
In Gaza: 15 Feb 2010 - One of many destroyed water wells in Gaza’s border regions. The Electronic Intifada [blog version longer and slightly modified from that published on E.I.] “If we didn’t get the wheat planted today, we would not have had crops this year,” says Abu Saleh Abu Taima, eyeing the two Israeli military jeeps parked along the border fence east of Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip. Although his land is more than 300 meters away, technically outside of the Israeli-imposed “buffer zone,” Abu Taima has reason to be wary. “They shot at us yesterday. I was here with my wife and nephews.” Like many farmers along Gaza’s eastern and northern borders, Abu Taima...

Jenny Tonge is Sacrificed (Again) to Appease Zionists
Palestine Chronicle: 16 Feb 2010 - By Stuart Littlewood - London In another blow to British free speech the parliamentarian Baroness Jenny Tonge, a good friend to Palestinians for many years, has been betrayed by her party colleagues and sacked. Jenny Tonge dared to comment on allegations circulating in the media about Israel harvesting human organs during their emergency rescue operations in Haiti. To prevent these allegations going any further, she said, "the IDF and the Israeli Medical Association should establish an independent inquiry immediately to clear the names of the team in Haiti.” The allegations included reports that the former head of Israel’s forensic institute admitted Israeli pathologists harvested organs from dead Palestinians and others without permission but this nauseating practice had ended in the 1990s. Yet Jenny Tonge’s remarks brought a storm of protest from her own colleagues as well as the Zionist rat-pack. One of them said: "She is misguided to call for any investigation. On this basis, there could be calls for an investigation to discover the ‘truth’ in the The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.” Another said: "We understand why the idea would be offensive to the Jewish community." Yet another said: “Jenny's comments were damaging within the community and also to the wider debate about the Middle East." A fourth, eager to cash in on the hysteria, commented: “It’s abhorrent that anyone should suggest that something as perverse and sick as this should be investigated.” The Israeli embassy, never known to miss a trick, said that the allegations were...

Jews-Only Homes for Ajami
Palestine Chronicle: 16 Feb 2010 - By Jonathan Cook in Jaffa Over the past few days graffiti scrawled on walls around the mixed Jewish and Arab town of Jaffa in central Israel exclaims: "Settlers, keep out" and "Jaffa is not Hebron". Although Jaffa is only a stone's throw from the bustling coastal metropolis of Tel Aviv, Arab residents say their neighbourhood has become the unlikely battleground for an attempted takeover by extremist Jews more familiar from West Bank settlements. Small numbers of nationalist religious Jews, distinctive for wearing knitted skullcaps, have begun moving into Jaffa's deprived main Arab district, Ajami, over recent months. Tensions have been simmering since a special seminary was established last year in the heart of Ajami for young Jewish men who combine study of the Bible with serving in the Israeli army. Many such seminaries, known as "hesder yeshivas", are located in the occupied territories and have earnt a reputation for turning out extremists. Last week Ajami's residents were dealt a further blow when an Israeli court approved the sale of one of the district's few remaining building plots to B'Emuna (Hebrew for "with faith"), a construction company that specialises in building subsidised homes for religious families, many of them in West Bank settlements. The Association of Civil Rights in Israel, the country's largest human rights law centre, which petitioned the courts on the Arab residents' behalf, called the company's policy "racist". B'Emuna, which is expected to complete 20 apartments in the next few months, is applying for approval for a further...
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