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Bethlehem

  • WATCH: Christian, Muslim Palestinians protest separation wall route

    Days after the army uprooted Palestinian-owned olive trees to pave the route of the separation barrier in Beit Jala, Christians and Muslims from the town hold a joint protest to try and put a stop to the plan. By Oren Ziv Hundreds of Muslim and Christian Palestinians protested Sunday morning in the West Bank town of Beit Jala against the future establishment of the separation wall that would cut them off from Jerusalem. Protesters marched Sunday toward the work zone where the wall is route is being paved, just days after the army uprooted dozens of ancient olive trees to pave…

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  • WATCH: Dozens of Palestinian-owned trees uprooted to build separation wall

    Dozens of Palestinian-owned olive trees uprooted to complete separation wall that will eventually fully encircle the Bethlehem area.  Text and photos by Oren Ziv / Activestills.org The Israeli Defense Ministry renewed its efforts to build a section of the separation wall in the Bethlehem area this week, sending bulldozers and Border Policemen to uproot dozens of olive trees in Wadi Ahmed, on the outskirts of Beit Jala. The plan is to completely enclose Bethlehem and the surrounding villages — closing all entrances to the area — by the separation wall. Entire areas of the separation wall have yet be built,…

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  • Arab-American comedians turn hardships into gags at West Bank festival

    Thousands of Palestinians flock to Bethlehem, Ramallah and Jerusalem for the 1001 Laughs comedy festival where serious topics such as identity, stereotypes and the difficulty of air travel turned into comedy gold. On Friday afternoon Mo Amer stood under two looming globe-shaped light fixtures pouring heat over a makeshift stage at a Bethlehem hotel. The white-sleeved chairs in the modest ballroom were all taken and people stood in the back. Air from mobile units reached no one. With a few comic complaints and melodramatic forehead wiping, Mo plowed on, leaning in to say: “we Arabs, we don’t need doctors. We…

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  • Seven Nights 4: Contact point

    Chapter four in the nighttime journey is a tale of two parties. For other nights click here. If you think the nights I skip in this chronicle are uneventful, think again fast. On Wednesday I was rushed to the airport with an immigration scandal. A young American who flew in to intern with a company for which I work was interrogated on arrival and then deported. The reason remained withheld but we suspected political bias. This is hardly an unusual occurrence these days. The intern handed her interrogators the number of the company head: a leader in alternative tourism, a National…

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  • WATCH: Israeli forces pepper-spray Palestinian journalists

    Israeli security forces attack two Palestinian journalists covering a West Bank march commemorating the murder of Mohammad Abu Khdeir in the West Bank on Thursday. The incident follows numerous assaults on journalists in recent months, primarily Palestinians. Israeli security forces attacked a demonstration commemorating Mohammed Abu Khdeir last Thursday, including pepper-spraying in the face two Palestinian journalists working for a Jordanian news station. Troops also used tear gas and stun grenades against participants in the demonstration, which took place near the settlement of Geva Benyamin in the central West Bank. [tmwinpost] The two journalists, who were covering the event for…

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  • PHOTOS: Palestinians cross into Jerusalem for Ramadan

    Tens of thousands of Palestinian women and men over 40 make their way to Qalandiya checkpoint to cross over to Jerusalem in honor of the second Friday of Ramadan. Those who aren't allowed to cross? They found their own way. Photos and text by Oren Ziv / Activestills.org Dozens of young Palestinians crossed Qalandiya checkpoint Friday morning in order to make it to the second Friday prayer of Ramadan at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Since Israel allows only men above 40 to cross the checkpoint, dozens of young Palestinians attempted to climb the separation wall and reach Jerusalem using…

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  • The Long Road to Bethlehem: Part two

    Click here to read part one. I was sold on the apartment. But my landlady wasn’t sold on me yet. We went upstairs and sat in her salon. Once a porch, it had been closed in with glass windows and offered a view of the hills surrounding Bethlehem. It was one of the few vistas that wasn’t ruined by the occupation. There was no wall, no checkpoints, no military bases, no settlements. As my landlady took her seat across from me, she handed me a small, wrapped hard candy. She apologized for not offering me coffee. I realized how much…

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  • When even Israel's sports reporters ignore Palestinians

    It turns out that only threatening measures by the Palestinian Authority make the Israeli media notice Palestinian athletes. By Asaf Marziano A "blind spot" is a kind of built-in flaw in the human eye. This spot exists for all of us, meaning that our view of the world will always lack that certain spot. Because our mind has mechanisms that allow us to complete the picture based on prior knowledge about the world, we are able to see a complete, continuous picture. It is understood that this picture will match what we know about the world, and not the the…

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  • PHOTOS: Running between the walls in the Palestine Marathon

    Palestinian and international runners criss-crossed the West Bank town of Bethlehem under the banner of 'Right to Movement.' Photos and text by: Ahmad Al-Bazz/Activestills.org Under the theme "Right to Movement," about 3,200 participants from all over Palestine—and more than 50 countries around the world—joined the third annual Palestine International Marathon on Friday, which took place in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. [tmwinpost] The marathon aimed to highlight the restriction of Palestinian movement under Israeli military occupation. The route also included Aida refugee camp, where hundreds of Palestinians have lived since the Nakba, the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians from their…

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  • The long road to Bethlehem

    It wasn’t the soaring arches or the elegant windows, with their curved caps. It wasn’t that the first room of the house was built in 1808. It wasn’t the jasmine that, like a woman letting down her hair, released its heavy perfume at night. It wasn’t the olive, loquat, lemon, almond, and apricot trees that filled the garden. Nor was it that the fruit from that garden seemed sweeter here in Bethlehem than it was in Jerusalem. The apartment’s biggest selling point, in my landlady’s opinion? The well. She showed it to me the first time I saw the place,…

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  • The Israel-Palestine Lorde diaries, Chapter 6: Crossing over

    It's time for the local Lorde tribute to go over the Line, in more than one way.   Read the previous chapters of The Israel-Palestine Lorde Diaries here. On Boxing Day we traveled down to Bethlehem. We were five: my girlfriend Ruthie, three members of her research team (she is a doctoral student of social psychology) and yours truly. We have all been to Bethlehem before, where Israelis seldom venture. Like other Palestinian cities in the West Bank, Bethlehem is designated "Area A." According to Israeli law, it is illegal for us to be present in Area A, and most are…

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  • 'Israeli army increasing use of live fire at West Bank protests'

    Despite being illegal as a crowd control weapon, eyewitness accounts and a new report by B'Tselem document the Israeli military's increased use of 0.22 caliber live bullets against Palestinians at West Bank protests and clashes. Photos by: Ryan Rodrick Beiler and Oren Ziv/Activestills.org Text by: Ryan Rodrick Beiler Two years ago this week, 15-year-old Palestinian Salih al-Amarin was shot in the head by Israeli forces with live ammunition. He died several days later. Al-Amarin, a resident of Azza Refugee Camp in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, was taking part in clashes with Israeli forces stationed on the separation wall…

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  • How one soccer match tells the entire Palestinian story

    On Friday morning, the Palestine national soccer team will face off against Jordan, a team with a majority of Palestinian players, in the Asian Cup. Whether they choose to or not, the 22 players on the field will tell the story of refugees, occupation, checkpoints and the connection between home and diaspora. Oh, and they'll also play soccer.  By Yonatan Mendel May 30, 2014 will go down as one of the biggest days in the history of Palestinian soccer. It happened far away from home, in Malé, the capital of Maldives. Palestine made it to the final round of the AFC…

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