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Welcome to this Week in Palestine, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org, for April 6 to the 15th 2013
Turbulence in the Palestinian government after word of Prime Minister’s resignation went out, in the meantime invasions into Palestinian communities, leave several civilians wounded, these stories and more, coming up, stay tuned.
The Nonviolence Report
Let’s begin our weekly report as usual with the nonviolent activities organized in the West Bank. This week protests were organized in the villages of al Nabi Saleh, Bil’in, Nil’in and Silwad in central West Bank, in addition to Beit Omer and Al Ma’ssara in southern west Bank. IMEMC’s Salam Qumsiyeh with the story:
On Friday five local youth and an international supporter, were injured by Israeli soldiers rubber coated steel bullets at the weekly anti wall and settlements protest of Al Nabi saleh village. Villagers and their international supporters marched at the midday prayers towards lands Israeli took over to construct an illegal settlement on.
Troops stopped the protest at the village entrance and attacked the unarmed protesters with tear gas and rubber coated steel bullets, later troops invaded the village and attacked residents homes with tear gas. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
At the nearby villages of Bil’in and Ni’lin, residents and their international and Israeli supporters, managed to reach the wall. Soldiers stationed there fired tear gas and chemical water on protesters. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
In Silwad village on Friday, residents protested against the Israeli new settlement on their lands and conducted the midday prayers at lands the settlers plan to take over. After the prayers soldiers attacked protesters with tear gas. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation on Thursday settlers attacked a farmer from Silwad and injured him, when the villagers objected the attack Israeli soldiers attacked them and one youth was injured during the clashes.
In central West Bank protests were organized at the villages of Bil’in, Ni’lin and Al Nabi saleh. Also protests were organized in southern West Bank, at the village of Al Ma’ssara near Bethlehem and another one in the nearby city of Hebron.
Elsewhere, at al Ma’ssara village, Israeli troops stopped the villagers and their supporters at village entrance then forced them back using rifle buts and batons to bush people back, no injuries were reported.
Earlier in the week Israeli troops attacked, on Monday morning, a nonviolent protest organized by villagers and their international and Israeli supporters at the village of Beit Omer, southern West Bank. Residents were protesting the Israeli wall and settlements built on lands stolen by the Israeli army from local farmers.
Soldiers used tear gas and rubber coated steel bullets to attack the unarmed protesters. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation. Moreover one international supporter was arrested by the Israeli army during the protest.
For IMEMC News this is Salam Qumsiyeh.
The Political Report
Palestinian authority considers the two-state solution as the most viable to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Meanwhile, western-backed Palestinian Prime Minister produced his resignation but a decision is yet to be taken. The details with IMEMC’s Rami Al Meghari.
Top Palestinian Authority’s negotiator Saeb Ereikat considers the two-state solution as the most workable for Palestinians and Israelis, urging Israel to accept such a solution , envisioned by Washington back in 2008.
Also, Ereikat maintained, during a meeting in the West Bank city of Jericho, with representatives of a number of European countries including France, Britain, that Israel should also agree on the release of 1000 Palestinian prisoners, Israel agreed to in the same time period.
Ereikat ‘s statements come as Israel and Palestinians have not yet resumed their peace talks, stalled since 2008. In November of last year, Palestinian Authority secured a non-member state status at the UN , something that both Israel and the United States had rejected.
In the meantime, Washington believed that it is unexpected that Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad, will resign from his post. Fayyad had produced a resignation letter to Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, over growing Palestinian calls for the man’s resignation.
The Palestinian authority, under Fayyad, has been going through some financial hardships, particularly after November 2012, when Israel refused to deliver tax revenues due to the Palestinian authority. Israel collects the tax money on behalf of the Palestinian authority since the signing of Oslo Accord of 1993. This is not the first time that Israel takes such a step.
At the internal Palestinian level, representatives of both Hamas and Fatah parties met in Cairo this week on ways out of current political split, in place since Hamas took control of Gaza in 2007. Fatah of president Abbas wants elections to come first, while Hamas insists on conciliation as a top priority.
For IMEMC news, I am Rami Almeghari in Gaza
The West Bank and Gaza Report
This week, four Palestinian civilians including a journalist, were injured by Israeli gunfire. In addition, the Israeli army conducted at least 78 military invasions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and Gaza. IMEMC’s Ghassan Bannoura has more:
On Monday, Mohamed Al Azah, a 23 year old photojournalist, was hit in the face by a tear gas canister while he was covering clashes between invading Israeli soldiers and Palestinian youth at Aida refugee camp in the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem. Medical sources said that Mohamed was moved to a nearby hospital in critical condition. Many of the protesters were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
Clashes at Aida refugee camp continued all week. On Wednesday a 19 year old boy was hit in the head by a rubber-coated steel bullet fired by invading Israeli soldiers. The boy was moved to Bethlehem city hospital after sustaining critical wounds.
Also this week, a Palestinian worker was shot and injured Monday evening by Israeli live gunfire near the northern West Bank city of Nablus, when Israeli troops opened fire at a group of Palestinian workers at a construction site. The man sustained moderate wounds.
On Tuesday, A young Palestinian woman was injured when an Israeli settler ran her over with his car near the village of Beit Omer southern West Bank. Local sources said that Alaa Al ‘alami, 22, was on her way home to Beit Omer village when the settler ran her over and fled the scene. A Palestinian ambulance was called in by one of the villagers to transport Al ‘alami to a hospital in the nearby city of Hebron.
During this week, the Israeli army conducted at least 78 military invasions targeting West Bank communities. In those attacks, Israeli troops kidnapped 55 civilians among them 8 children and two freed political detainees.
On Thursday, Israeli soldiers shot and injured, then abducted former political prisoner, Mo’taz Obeido, 32, from Hebron city, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank. Obeido suffers from a disability sustained when he was shot by the army in November of 2011. Earlier on Wednesday, the Israeli army kidnapped former political prisoner, Thaer Halahla, from Hebron, who conducted a 78-day hunger strike last year protesting his 2-year Administrative Detention without charges. The Israeli army freed Halahla in July 2012 when he agreed to end his hunger strike.
Also this week, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian villagers and uprooted trees owned by local famers. On Tuesday, Israeli settlers uprooted 350 trees owned by local farmers from the village of Al Thahriya, near Hebron, in the southern West Bank. Also near Hebron on Thursday, Israeli settlers uprooted around 100 olive trees owned by local farmers from the village of Beit Omer.
In the Gaza Strip this week, Israeli forces continued to harass fishermen at sea. On Monday, Israeli gunboats stationed off the coast of al-Waha resort, northwest of Beit Lahia, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing 2 nautical miles offshore. As a result, the fishermen returned to shore, fearing that they would be wounded or arrested. Neither casualties nor material damage were reported. A similar incident occurred on Wednesday of this week as well.
Elsewhere in Gaza, on both Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, several armored Israeli military vehicles and bulldozers invaded Palestinian farmland east of Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. Israeli tanks and bulldozers fired several rounds of live ammunition while uprooting and bulldozing farmlands.
For IMEMC News this is Ghassan Bannoura.
And that’s all for today from This Week in Palestine this was the Weekly report for April 6 to 5th , 2013 from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. For more news and updates please keep visiting our website at www.imemc.org. Today’s report has been brought to you by Husam Qassis and me, George Rishmawi