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Welcome to Palestine Today, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org, for Thursday, April 9th, 2015.
Israeli settlers destroy Palestinian farm lands in the West Bank and in Gaza public workers go on strike to protest delayed salaries. These stories, and more, coming up, stay tuned.
A group of Israeli extremists from an illegal Israeli outpost started on Thursday to dig a road on Palestinian lands to link it with their outpost in al-Khader town, near the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem.
The mayor, Tawfiq Salah, said the assailants starting digging the road in Ein al-Qassis area, near their illegal Sidi Boaz outpost. Salah added that local residents noticed the attackers, and managed to stop them after they leveled nearly 200 meters of lands.
The official said that completing this road would lead to the illegal annexation of an entire mountain of approximately 100 Acres of Palestinian lands, and would also lead denying the Palestinians access to their nearby lands.
The area has been subject to frequent attacks that also included illegal annexation of lands, assaults on farmers, and uprooting dozens of trees.
Israel has been trying to illegally annex large areas of Palestinian lands, especially since al-Khader is near the Jerusalem-Hebron road, as Tel Aviv is aiming at using the lands in its so-called “Greater Jerusalem” colonialist project that extends, in this area, to the northern parts of the southern West Bank city of Hebron.
Earlier on Thursday at dawn, Israeli soldiers invaded Qabatia town, near the northern West Bank city of Jenin, and kidnapped one Palestinian. Soldiers also invaded Beit Fajjar, south of Bethlehem and searched homes there.
Elsewhere, The public workers union in the Gaza Strip announced a general strike Thursday, across all public institutions, in protest against the government’s continued failure to pay salaries to tens of thousands of employees of the former Hamas government.
The strike announcement signals a renewed determination by public workers to pressure the Fateh-Hamas unity government to address the simmering crisis over the workers, whose future has been uncertain since the April 2014 unity deal.
In December, meanwhile, Israel froze some $127 million in tax funds owed to the PA in revenge for the PA’s decision to join the International Criminal Court. The move has added to the lack of funds facing Palestinian authorities, and has led to major salary problems for even recognized employees of the PA.
And that’s all for today from the IMEMC News; this was the Thursday, April 9th, 2015 news round-up 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 George Rishmawi and me Ghassan Bannoura.