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Welcome to this Week in Palestine, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org, for January 8 to 14th 2011.
General Lead A Quartet meeting is coming up to discuss ways to push the stalled peace talks forward as Israeli military and settlers continue their assaults against Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, these stories and more are coming up, stay tuned.
Nonviolence Lets us begin our weekly report as usual with the nonviolent activities in West Bank with IMEMC’s Ramona M
The Nonviolence Report
Eight civilians were injured on Friday when Israeli soldiers attacked the anti-wall protests in the villages of Bilâ€™in, Nilâ€™in, and Nabi Saleh central West Bank in adtion to Al Maâ€™ssara in the south.
Three civilians and one Israeli solidarity activist were wounded in an anti-wall protest march in the central West Bank on Friday. Local sources said Israeli troops fired rubber bullets, sound bombs, and tear gas canisters at protestors, resulting in three injuries to Palestinians. One Israeli activist was hit in the back with a tear gas canister, and dozens suffered from tear gas inhalation.
Israeli forces closed off the village since the early hours of the morning and threatened protestors who tried to cross into the area. Forces entered the homes of Yasser al-Tamimi and Halmi al-Tamimi, targeting journalists and attempting to block them from covering the protests.
In the village of Bilâ€™in Israeli and international supporters marched with the villagers after the midday prayers and headed towards the. As soon as protesters reached the gate of the wall Israeli soldiers fired tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets at them. a 13 year old child from the Bilâ€™in along with one Israeli and one Dutch activist were injured by Israeli soldiers. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
In the nearby village of Nilâ€™in, villagers were joined by Israeli and international supporters and marched up to the Wall. as soon as people reached the wall Israeli soldiers fired tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets at them. 20 year old local youth was hit in the head by a rubber-coated steel bullet. The young man was moved to Ramallah hospital for treatment and was released later.
One Palestinian man sustained light injures on Friday as soldiers attacked the weekly anti-wall protest it the village of al-Maâ€™sara near the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem. Villagers along with international and Israeli supporters gathered at the local school after midday prayers on Friday and marched towards lands taken from local farmers to build the wall. Israeli troops stopped the villagers and their supporters from leaving the village, using rifle butts and batons to force them back.
Soldiers beat up Mohamed Ibrejeyah, a coordinator for the local Committee Against the Wall and Settlements. Ibrejeyah sustained cuts and bruises and was treated at the local clinic, local sources reported.
For IMEMC.org this is Ramon M
Political Quartet Committee for Middle East peace is set to meet up in the beginning of next month in Germany. The Quartet, involving United Nations, European Union, Russia and the United States, will discuss ways to resume stalled peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians. IMEMC’s Rami Al-Meghari has the story.
As Palestinian-Israeli peace process continues to be stalled since both Palestinians and Israelis stopped their peace talks in September of last year, following mediations by Washington, Palestinians insist on their demand that Israeli should halt all settlement activities on occupied Palestinian territories, while Israel keeps up settlements buildings dubbed illegal by international law.
In related news, the Palestinian Authority said it would submit the issue of settlements activities to the United Nations Security council, so that a freeze of such activities could be enforced on the ground.
The PA’s move coincided the recognition by some world countries including Argentina, of a Palestinian state over the borders of 1967. Israel rejected the recognition as intervention in the peace process, standing for two decades now.
Amidst stalemate of the peace process, Israeli officials warned this week of likely attacking the Gaza Strip if homemade rocket fire continues against nearby Israeli areas.
Israeli minister of army, Ehud Barak, was quoted as saying that Israel’s patience can not be tested and that his army would possible stop the homemade fire by force.
In response, all Palestinian resistance factions in Gaza met on Thursday to come out with a unified position over the homemade rocket fire. The ruling Hamas party and government confirmed that representatives of all factions in Gaza agreed on a unilateral ceasefire.
During a Friday sermon in Gaza city today, Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya of Hamas, told reporters that Gaza’s border lines with Israel are controlled and that his government would not allow any one to breach a unilateral ceasefire that Hamas did first announce right after the Israeli war on Gaza two years ago.
Rami Almeghari. IMEMC.org, Gaza/
West Bank and Gaza One Palestinian killed in the West Bank and five injured in Gaza as Israeli military an settlers escalate attacks against Palestinian civilians, this and more with IMEMC’s Colin Bell.
Clashes took place on Friday evening between Israeli soldiers and dozens of Palestinian residents in Silwan in occupied East Jerusalem. The clashes started after dozens of soldiers and policemen surrounded Silwan and fired gas bombs and rounds of live ammunition at two Palestinian homes wanted by settlers. Several injuries were reported due to teargas inhalation, while the army prevented the ambulances from entering the area.
Israeli settlers uprooted on Friday at least 100 olive saplings belonging to residents of Qasra village, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
Dozens of people suffered from inhalation of tear gas at Bil’in at the protest commemorating the death of Jawaher Abu Rahma last week. Two of the protesters were rendered unconscious by the gas, and one protest organizer was hit by a canister.
One week after Israeli soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian man at the Al Hamra checkpoint, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus, soldiers shot and killed another man on the same roadblock on Saturday
The Israeli army abducted a 17-year old Palestinian boy in the Old City of Hebron late on Saturday night, according to local sources. He was taken away by soldiers without being given a reason for his detention.
Also on Monday, Israeli troops arrested at least four Palestinians in an overnight raid targeting the town of Dura, south of the West Bank.
On Tuesday, in Salfit, Israeli soldiers kidnapped a Hamas legislator, Dr. Omar Abdul-Raziq, who also served as the Finance Minister of the Hamas-led government in 2006.
The Israeli Authorities demolished, on Tuesday morning, a home in Azzoun Atma village, near the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia, under the pretext of its being built without a permit.
. On Tuesday, the Israeli Military Court accepted the military prosecution’s appeal to extend Abdallah Abu Rahmah’s sentence. Abu Rahmah, co-ordinator of the Bil’in Popular Committee, was due to be released on November 18th 2010, but was kept in detention at the military prosecutionâ€™s request. He will now serve an additional 2-3 months in prison, making his serving time a total of sixteen months. Abu Rahmah, was arrested last year and was subsequently indicted before an Israeli Military Court on unsubstantiated charges that included stone-throwing and arms possession.
Also on Tuesday, the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) issued its monthly report documenting violations against journalists in the Palestinian territories. According to the report there were 17 violations against journalists and two against their property. The offenses were committed by both the Israeli army and the Palestinian security services in the West Bank and Gaza.
Palestinian fighter, Jamil Al Najjar, was assassinated and another man injured in an Israeli Air Strike on Khan Younis, in southern Gaza on Tuesday. The dead man was identified as a member of the Al Quds Brigades, the armed wing of Islamic Jihad.
On Monday an elderly Palestinian man was shot and killed by Israeli army fire in northern Gaza. The man was identified as Shaâ€™ban Shaker Al Qarmout, 65. He was killed when the army opened fire at agricultural lands in Beit Hanoun, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip
According to an official report, Israeli forces have arrested 67 Palestinians since the first day of 2011, among them are 13 minors and 3 fishermen, the Palestinian Information Center reported Monday.
On Wednesday, Israel soldiers demolished the small Bedouin village of Al-Daqeqa, East of Yatta in the southern Hebron Hills. All 17 homes in Al-Daqeqa were destroyed as well as a school. Soldiers attacked the villagers when they refused to leave their homes and arrested 4 of them.
On Thursday, the Israeli army kidnapped eight Palestinians across the West Bank. The kidnappings took place in Hebron, Bethlehem, Tulkarem and Jericho.
Also on Thursday six Palestinians were wounded, one seriously, after a group of armed Israeli settlers invaded Qasra village, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus. The attack was carried out after Israeli soldiers dismantled an illegal settlement outpost built on privately-own Palestinian land.
Today, Friday, one Palestinian was injured after he was beaten by Israeli soldiers during the weekly protest at Al-Mass’ara, near Bethlehem. Mohamed Ibrejeyah suffered cuts and bruises and was treated in a local clinic.
For IMEMC.org Colin Bell
And that was just some of the news from this week in Palestine, for more updates; please visit our website at www.imemc.org. On behalf of IMEMC staff and administration we thank you for joining us from occupied Bethlehem, This report has been brought to you by Husam Qassis and George Rishmawi.