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Welcome to Palestine Today, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org for Tuesday 8th May 2012.
Kadima to join coalition with Likud; Israeli High Court Refuses Government’s Petition to keep illegal settlement outpost; and Israeli Army ransacks the office of Popular Committee in Ramallah. these stories and more, are coming up, stay tuned.
Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, who also heads the Likud Party, has reached an agreement with Shaul Mofaz, head of the Kadima opposition party, to form a new national unity government. The move will avoid the early election that according to news yesterday was likely to have been held in September. Israeli Radio reported that, under this agreement, Mofaz will become deputy prime-minister and a minister without portfolio in the new government, and Kadima will hold a number of important ministerial portfolios.
The Palestinian News Network reports that the Israeli Supreme Court has confirmed today the November ruling of the District Court to evict Palestinians Ghazi Zalloum and Ismail Wazwaz from their properties in the neighbourhood of Al Qurma in the Old City of Jerusalem in favour of Israeli settlers, giving as the reason that both properties belonged to Jews before 1948. Implementation of the eviction order may occur at any moment. The Court also instructed that all Court and attorney costs be paid by the two Palestinians. The Jewish organisation, ‘Ateret Cohanim’, has enabled 900 settlers to move into the Old City of Jerusalem in addition to the 3,100 Jews living in the Jewish quarter.
In other news the Israeli High Court rejected on Monday the Israeli Government’s petition that the settlement outpost known as ‘Ulpana’, constructed on stolen Palestinian land, should be removed, confirming its previous decision of November 2011. The High Court set a date of July 1st for voluntary evacuation of the Ulpana outpost by its current residents, after which the Israeli military must remove them from the land. Because the case involved Palestinian land owners who had clear ownership of the land in question, the Israeli human rights group, Yesh Din, which represented the Palestinians in the case, said that this was an important ruling which maintains the right of Palestinians to own land. The outpost of Ulpana is located adjacent to the Beit El settlement near Ramallah in the central West Bank.
On Tuesday at dawn Israeli soldiers invaded the Ramallah office of Stop the Wall, a grassroots organization that campaigns against the Israeli separation wall, and confiscated all their files and computers after trashing the office. Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi, Palestinian MP and Head of the Palestinian National Initiative, condemned the Israeli attack and the confiscation of documents, and said that this invasion is proof that Israel is carrying out an organized campaign against all forms of popular, non-violent resistance. The army recently targeted other media facilities in Ramallah, including the offices of Watan TV, and Jerusalem Educational TV in the city center. Ramallah is classified as Area A under the Oslo Agreements, supposedly under complete Palestinian civil and security control, but the army repeatedly violates these agreements with invasions and assaults.
And that’s all today from IMEMC News. This was the Tuesday 8 May daily roundup of news from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. For more news and updates please visit our website at www.imemc.org. Today’s report has been brought to you by Husam Qassis and William Temple.