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Welcome to this Week in Palestine, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org, for September 19th, to the 25th, 2015.
this week Israeli army attacks targeting West Bank communities leave three killed civilians, meanwhile Palestinian in Gaza celebrate Al-Adha holidays despite harsh economy and siege. 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. Two Palestinian men were injured; scores of protesters were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation on Friday when Israeli troops attacked anti wall and settlements protests organized in West Bank villages. IMEMC’s Majd Batjali has more:
This week anti wall and settlements protests were organized in the central west Bank villages of Bil’in, Ni’lin, and al Nabi Saleh. In addition, protests took place in the villages of Kufer Qadum in northern West Bank.
Israeli soldiers used live rounds, tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets against the unarmed protesters.
In Bil’in and Ni’lin ,protesters managed to reach the Israeli wall. Meanwhile in al Nabi Saleh village, Israeli troops fired several rounds of rubber-coated steel bullets at the villagers as soon as they reached the village entrance. In Bil’in village, Israeli tear gas bombs hit two civilians injuring them. Moreover tear gas bombs also caused a fire that destroyed a number of trees owned by local farmers.
In the meantime at the village of Kufer Kadum scores of residents and their international supporters were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation as Israeli soldiers attacked the weekly protest organized there. Troops also fired tear gas into residents’ homes after invading the village.
For IMEMC News this Majd Batjali.
The Political Report
This week Palestinians in Gaza celebrate Al-Adha holidays despite harsh economic situation and siege, meanwhile a new BDS movement success is reported this week. IMEMC’s George Rishmawi with the details:
Despite the difficult economic conditions in the Gaza Strip, Palestinians insist on keeping the tradition of celebrating Al-Adha Eid, The Feast of Sacrifice. Al-Adha Eid is one of the most important holidays in the Muslim calendar, but the ritual can be expensive as families are required to pay for a sacrificial animal.
The Ministry of Agriculture in Gaza said that livestock prices have increased around 25 percent since the war last year, which adds to the burden of the local families. Many families in Gaza had to make arrangements to pay for the sacrifice in installments, with most unable to pay the full amount of up to $500 in one payment.
A recently published report by the United Nations said the Gaza Strip will be uninhabitable soon. Currently almost 72 percent of all households in Gaza are meanwhile struggling with food insecurity, and the number of Palestinian refugees who rely entirely on food distribution from UN agency has jumped from 72,000 in the year 2000 to 868,000 by last May.
Gaza, a tiny enclave of almost 225 square miles squeezed between Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea that is home to some 1.8 million Palestinians, counts one of the highest population densities in the world.
In other news, the city council of Iceland’s capital decided on Wednesday to boycott all Israeli goods. The motion was approved by 9 votes to 5 after being proposed by one of the councilors from the Social Democratic Alliance. The motion states that the capital Reykjavík will boycott as long as the occupation of Palestinian territories continues.
The news was welcomed by Riya Hassan, the Europe campaigns officer with the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee, the coalition of Palestinian organizations that leads the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.
Hassan said “This motion to exclude Israeli products from the city’s procurement system is an impressive victory for human rights and the Palestinian people in its struggle for justice, equality and freedom.”
Brazil, on the other hand, said it will not award the Israeli security company a contract of 2.2 billion dollars for the upcoming 2016 Olympic games, after a letter signed by 30 Brazilian social movements, political parties, workers unions, and different associations indicating how International Security and Defense Systems (ISDS) is accused of having ties to coups, death squares and dictatorships in Central America, as well as close links with the Israeli military.
These moves join another success by the Boycott Divestment & Sanctions movement after the EU decided to label all Israeli settlement products, a step that was welcomed by Palestinians although seen as insufficient
For IMEMC News, this is George Rishmawi
The West Bank and Gaza Report
This week three Palestinian civilians were killed by separate Israeli army attacks targeting West Bank communities. In Gaza, Israeli tanks continued to attack farmers near border areas. IMEMC’s Eman Abedraboo-Bannoura reports:
Two Palestinians have been killed on Tuesday in two separate incidents by Israeli troops’ gunfire in the southern West Bank district of Hebron. Dia’ Talahma, 21, from Doura town near Hebron city was killed, on Tuesday at dawn, near the Kharsa Junction, south of Doura. The army claims the young man tried to throw a grenade on the ‘Combat Engineers Battalion’ and that the grenade detonated before he managed to throw it, leading to his death.
An ambulance of the Palestinian Red Crescent rushed to the scene, but the soldiers sealed the entire area, and prevented them from reaching him. After the news about the death of the Palestinians spread, clashes took place near the Kharsa roadblock, and the soldiers fired dozens of gas bombs on the protesters, and several homes.
Later in the day, Hadeel Hashlamoun, 18, was critically injured and later died of her wounds on Tuesday afternoon, when soldiers shot her at an Israeli military checkpoint in Al Shohada street in Hebron old city. Media sources in Hebron said Hadeel was injury in her abdomen, and that the soldiers left her bleeding onto the ground for nearly 30 minutes, and prevented Palestinian medics from approach her.
The Israeli army claims the young woman attempted to stab a soldier. Photos that was taken by activists of youth against settlements in Hebron who witnessed that incident said that Hadeel posed no threat to the soldiers and did not carry any sharp objects. According to her family Hadeel was a first-year student at the Hebron University.
Also this week, a Palestinian young man was pronounced dead on Thursday afternoon after succumbing to wounds he sustained at an Israeli military checkpoint last week. Ahmad Khatabah, 25, from Beit Fourik village near the northern West Bank city of Nablus was shot by Israeli troops at a military checkpoint near the city.
In other news, Israeli soldiers have kidnapped, on Wednesday at night and Thursday morning, fourteen Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem, including one of the guards of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Regardless of all Israeli restrictions imposed in Jerusalem old city and the kidnappings on Thursday, thousands of Palestinian marked Eid Al Adha with prayers inside Al Aqsa mosque.
in the Gaza strip, Several Israeli military vehicles, and bulldozers, carried out on Monday morning, a limited invasion into Palestinian lands east of Jabalia town, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip. Eyewitnesses said the soldiers advanced dozens of meters into Palestinian lands, close to the border fence, and bulldozed them.
On Sunday night a rocket launched from the Gaza Strip landed in southern Israel Israel’s army said, with no reported injuries. No Palestinian group has claimed responsibility for the attack. Israeli warplanes attacked several targets across the Gaza Strip on last week after rockets were fired at an Israeli town bordering Gaza.
For IMEMC News this is Eman Abedraboo-Bannoura.
And that’s all for today from This Week in Palestine. This was the Weekly report for September 19th, to the 25th, 2015. From the Occupied Palestinian Territories. For more news and updates please visit our website at www.imemc.org, This week’s report has been brought to you by Maher Qasiess and me Ghassan Bannoura.