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Welcome to this Week in Palestine, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, www.imemc.org, for November 7, to the 13, 2015.
Israeli escalation continued; seven Palestinians were killed by Israeli army gunfire this week, meanwhile the EU decided to label Israeli settlement products. 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. on frdiay scores of were injured, and four kidnapped when Israeli troops attacked anti wall and settlements protests organized in West Bank villages.
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, protest took place in the village 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 Israeli soldiers kidnapped three international activists and one Palestinian when they attacked the anti wall protest on Friday.
Elsewhere 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.
The Political Report
Angry Israeli reaction to the EU decision to label Israeli settlement products, and the Palestinians officially welcome the move. IMEMC’s George Rishmawi with the details:
The Israeli Knesset approved this week a preliminary reading of a bill that would deny entry to anyone urging a boycott of Israel.
According to the bill, which was introduced by MK Yinon Magal from the Jewish Home party, ”anyone who is not an Israeli citizen or a permanent resident will not be granted any kind of visa or permit if they, or any company, organization or foundation they represent, calls for a boycott of Israel.”
If the bill is passed into law, it will grant the interior minister special authority to issue visas or permits in exceptional cases. According to the documentation accompanying Magal’s bill, ”in recent years, calls for boycotting Israel have intensified. It seems that this is a new front of war against Israel, which the country has yet to sufficiently prepare for. This bill will prevent individuals or representatives of companies, foundations or organizations that call for boycotting Israel from advancing their ideology on Israeli soil.”
The bill came shortly after the European Commission has decided to label the products in the European market produced in Israeli settlements built on occupied Palestinian lands since 1967.
An EU official said “The European Union, in line with international law, does not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967, namely the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank , including East Jerusalem, and does not consider them to be part of Israel’s territory irrespective of their legal status under domestic Israeli law.”
In his first response, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that the EU decision constituted a “double standard” as they didn’t label products from other disputed territories around the world. He added “the EU has decided to label only Israel, and they should be ashamed.”
On the same day, Israel has approved the construction of 891 new settler units in a Bethlehem settlement, bringing the number of the approved settler units this week to nearly 3000.
On his part, Mahmoud Nawaj’a general coordinator of the Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) welcomed the step as a sign that European governments are reacting to public opinion, civil society campaigning and Israeli intransigence and are becoming more willing to take some basic action against Israeli violations of international law., yet he added that this step is not sufficient saying that labeling settlement products is not a boycott which is what the BDS movement is calling for, similar to South Africa.
According to the Wall Street Journal, trade between the EU and Palestine accounted for just over €150 million in 2014, a tiny amount compared to the roughly €30 billion total commerce forecast this year between Israel and the EU, its biggest export market.
For IMEMC News, this is George Rishmawi
The West Bank and Gaza Report
This week seven Palestinians were killed by Israeli troops’ gunfire while scores others were injured as the Israeli army continued to use lethal force against unarmed protesters in Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza. IMEMC’s Ghassan Bannoura reports:
Three Palestinians were killed on Friday as they were shot by Israeli troops during clashes, two in Hebron city southern West Bank and one in the village of Budruss near the central West Bank city of Ramallah.
Moreover, Palestinian man was killed, on Thursday, his seriously wounded cousin was kidnapped by undercover Israeli soldiers who opened fire at them in the Surgery Ward of Ahli hospital in Hebron where Abdullah was being treated from his previous wounds.
Two more Palestinians were killed on Tuesday of this week in two separate army attacks. At Al Mosrara in occupied Jerusalem, Israeli soldiers shot and killed 37-year-old Mohamed Abed al Nimier, on Tuesday midday, allegedly after trying to stab troops.
Later on Tuesday, a Palestinian youth died on wounds he sustained after he was shot by Israeli troops at the Container checkpoint north of Bethlehem in southern West Bank.
A 24-year old woman was killed by Israeli troops Monday morning at a military checkpoint in the West Bank when she approached the checkpoint from afar, holding a knife in her hand and a suicide letter in her bag. She was shot by a soldier while she was still at least 30 feet away from the checkpoint.
The Palestinian ministry of health reported this week that the number of Palestinian killed by Israeli fire since October 1, have reached 86.
Palestinian medical sources announced that At least 400 Palestinians were injured by Israeli attacks targeting protesters this week in West Bank communities, Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.
Also this week, Israeli forces conducted more than 57 invasions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 17 ones in occupied East Jerusalem. During these attacks, Israeli troops kidnapped at least 118 Palestinian civilians, including 27 children.
In the Gaza Strip this week, Israeli soldiers, stationed across the border fence, fired dozens of rounds of live ammunition on Palestinian farmers, Thursday, working in their lands close to the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah, in central Gaza. Meanwhile, The Israeli Air Force fired, on Monday at dawn, several missiles into a site, run by of the al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, in southern Gaza. Damage was reported but no injuries.
For IMEMC News this is Ghassan Bannoura.
And that’s all for today from This Week in Palestine. This was the Weekly report November 7, to the 13, 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 Eman Abedraboo- Bannoura.