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Welcome to Palestine Today a service of the International Middle East Media Centre www.imemc.org, for Thursday June 2nd, 2011
According to Maan News Agency Fatah and Hamas officials have been detained by Israeli military forces in the West Bank. Fatah lawmaker Hussam Khader was abducted from his home in the Balata refugee camp at 2am. Khader is a long time proponent of Hmas and Fatah reconciliation. Hamas lawmaker Abdul Rahmad Zeidan, elected to the legislature in 2006, was detained from his home in Tulkarem. Fatah have said the arrests are part of an effort to destadalise the reconciliation process between Hamas and Fatah.
The Lebanese military is due to close off the border to Israel on Sunday to prevent a repeat of the clashes on Nakba Day of this year, according to YNet. The army has made it clear that it will cooperate with UNIFIL forces on the ground to enforce the exclusion barrier. According to JNet, al-Safir newspaper, who has ties to resistance group Hezbollah, has stated that Sundays march may be called off due to unprecedented pressure on the Lebanese government.
The French Foreign Minister, Alain Juppe, has proposed a Middle East peace conference in Paris before the end of July in an attempt to restart the stalled Middle East peace process, according to AFP. Juppe had presented to Palestinian negotiators a proposal for a peace plan based on US Presidents Barrack Obama’s call for a return to 1967 borders with agreed land swaps. The plan sets a one year deadline for reconciliation of issues such as right of return for Palestinian refugees and Jerusalem. Juppe was speaking after a meeting with Palestinian PM Fayyed as part of his trip to the region.
Marking the so-called “Jerusalem Day”, approximately 30.000 Zionists marched in occupied East Jerusalem on Wednesday “celebrating 44 years of occupation and annexation of the holy city”, and clashed with Arab citizens. Marchers went through contentious Jewish outposts in Palestinian neighbourhoods of Sheikh Jarrah prompting clashes will local Palestinian youth. There was property damage to Palestinian shops who closed for the day in anticipation of violence. A group also broke into Al Aqsa mosque, the third most holy site in Islam, and announced their intention to reclaim it for a Jewish temple by the Western Wall.
Israeli soldiers invaded on Wednesday evening Kafr Al Lubbad village, east of the northern West Bank city of Tulkarem, broke into a school construction site, and interrogated several residents. On Wednesday at dawn, army also kidnapped three children in the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and took them to an unknown destination.
Finally, Beit Sahour raised the French flag during a ceremony to mark the twinning of the town with the French city Vaulx-en-Velin. The ceremony was attended by local Boy Scout groups, community leaders as well as the towns Mayor Hani al Hayek. The French delegation comprised of the Mayor of Vaulx en Valin Bernard Genin. Genin reiterated his support for the Palestinian cause and confirmed his determination of keeping the Palestinian flag flying in Vaulx en Valin despite criticism from the media and other groups.
Thats all for today from the IMEMC. This was the Thursday 2nd of June daily roundup of news from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. We hope you will join us again tomorrow. This was brought to you by Husam Qassis and me Kevin Murphy.