A woman from Gaza is told during a visit to Israel that she must terminate her advanced pregnancy. The Israeli army and courts effectively refuse to allow her to mourn with her husband by her side. By Nomi Heger Over the last two weeks, while everyone in Israel was talking about the segregation between Palestinian and Jewish women in post-natal care, we here at Gisha (an organization that promotes the freedom of movement of Gaza residents) provided legal assistance to one pregnant woman, who just happens to be Palestinian and could not care less who was lying next to her,…Read More... | 2 Comments
Only 16 percent of destroyed or severely damaged households have been made habitable, a new UN survey finds. Some 75,000 Palestinians, including an estimated 44,000 children, remain internally displaced in the Gaza Strip almost two years after the devastating war with Israel that killed over 2,000 people, according to a United Nations survey of the situation published Tuesday. An estimated 18,000 housing units (16,965 households) in Gaza were either destroyed or severely damaged during the war. Only 3,000 of those housing units, or 16 percent, have since been rebuilt or otherwise rendered habitable, according to the UN’s Office for the…Read More...
One Palestinian fisherman is reportedly wounded by Israeli navy fire, four are arrested and their boats seized. The size of the zone where Israel allows Gazans to fish changes at the whims of Israeli military commanders and politicians, who have in the past openly discussed how they use it as collective punishment. By Haggai Matar and Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man The Israeli navy opened fire on unarmed Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip Saturday morning. No injuries were reported. [tmwinpost] On Friday Israeli naval forces arrested four Palestinian fishermen off the southern Gaza coast. Israel released three of the…Read More... | 3 Comments
A new Israeli policy makes it nearly impossible for Palestinian citizens from visiting their ailing relatives in the Gaza Strip. All in the name of security. By Michal Luft In a press release published July of 2015, Commander of the Southern Command, Maj. Gen. Sami Turgeman, announced a new policy intended to reduce entry into the Gaza by Israeli civilians, thereby further undermining the already limited ability of thousands of Palestinian citizens of Israel to see their relatives who live in the Strip. [tmwinpost] The decision came about after it was made public that two Israeli citizens had recently disappeared in…Read More... | 1 Comment
Israel denies permits to over 100 runners from Gaza. ’Freedom of movement is not only a right in itself, but is essential for the enjoyment of many other human rights,’ the United Nations says of the fourth annual marathon. Photos by Ahmad al-Bazz/Activestills.org Text by Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man Thousands of Palestinian and international runners from 64 countries participated in the fourth annual Palestine Marathon in the West Bank city of Bethlehem Friday morning. The run was held under the banner of the right to freedom of movement, a theme that was accented by Israel’s concrete separation wall along which much of…Read More... | 2 Comments
Israelis refuse to understand what drives Palestinians to violence. After all, it is far more convenient to dehumanize them than face reality. There’s something self-righteous about calling Palestinians who violently resist occupation “terrorists,” while referring to the ones occupying them, also violently, as mere “soldiers.” It becomes even more grotesque when the people committing these desperate acts are minors, or even children. Even at the tender age of 11 and 13 they are still terrorists, even in so-called “liberal” newspapers like Haaretz. The fact minors that cannot be held criminally responsible for their actions is suddenly no longer relevant to these…Read More... | 5 Comments
The army says aerial spraying was meant to ‘enable security operations.’ Palestinian farmers say hundreds of acres of crops were damaged or destroyed. The Israel army has confirmed that it used crop-dusters to kill off vegetation — and perhaps inadvertently, agricultural crops — inside the Gaza Strip last week. According to Palestinian officials, over 420 acres of land were damaged by the spraying. For years now, the IDF has unilaterally maintained a lethal “no-go zone” on the Palestinian side of the border with Gaza. Now, it seems, it has also implemented a “no-grow zone.” [tmwinpost] “The aerial spraying of herbicides…Read More... | 10 Comments
The Israeli army unit that administers the occupation has not updated its website for over five months. Instead, it religiously updates its Facebook page with impressive stats and jazzy graphics — in English only. What's going on? "Last week there were a total of 6,735 crossings between Gaza and Israel," COGAT, the administrative arm of the Israeli occupation chirped on its official Facebook page last Sunday.It is a standard social media update for the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, a unit of the Israeli Defense Ministry that oversees the occupation in the West Bank and Gaza. (COGAT controls movement in…Read More...
Three 'gestures' Israel can easily make that will radically improve the lives of at least thousands of Palestinians — all without compromising one inch on its own security concerns. By Amir Rotem In the hall of mirrors that is international diplomacy, all is being polished for the Netanyahu-Obama summit. Lists of gifts the two are expected to present each other are being leaked and commented upon. One of the things being said is that, on the advice of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), Israel’s prime minister will offer up a number of gestures to Palestinian residents…Read More... | 26 Comments
For years I have been escorting Mohammed and Maha to an Israeli hospital and back to Gaza. That is, except for those times when Israel denies him an entry permit. This week, as the illusory stability of daily routine disintegrates around us, something feels different. By Deb Reich We had stopped in a giant shopping center near Ashkelon on the way south to find Mohammed a new pair of sunglasses, because some kid in Gaza stole his recently. We hadn’t found any that he liked in Jaffa, where we lunched together as usual after Mohammed’s clinic check-ups at Tel Hashomer Hospital…Read More... | 1 Comment
Mubarak Awad, one of the main organizers of nonviolent resistance during the First Intifada until Israel exiled him, talks about why only nonviolence can defeat the occupation, how Palestinians must convince Israelis that peace is their own interest, and his fears that without a new nonviolent movement more and more Palestinian youths will be drawn to armed resistance. By Waleed Shahid (First published in 'In These Times') The largest Palestinian uprising in the history of the Israeli occupation is largely forgotten today. In the 1980s, thousands of Palestinians took part in large-scale civil disobedience actions, strikes, pickets, boycotts and sit-ins…Read More... | 23 Comments
What do you call a situation in which one country's army controls a foreign population's imports and exports, border crossings and airspace, population registry, and even how much electricity it can produce? Israel pulled its troops and settlers out of the occupied Gaza Strip in 2005, during what became known as “the disengagement.” As a result of the disengagement most Gazans have almost no contact with Israeli soldiers these days. But does that mean the strip of land many call "the world's largest open-aired prison" is no longer occupied? Al Jazeera, with the assistance of Israeli human rights organization Gisha,…Read More... | 27 Comments
The recent escalation in violence has caused many in Gaza to support renewing armed struggle against Israel. Hamas, however, is wary of firing rockets, preferring to cheer on Palestinians from the sidelines. By Abeer Ayyoub GAZA CITY — While usually considered one of the most volatile places in Palestine, the Gaza Strip seems to be taking a “let’s wait and see’’ approach to the most recent round of violence with Israel. Since the start of the escalation earlier of this month, the besieged, Hamas-ruled enclave has not immediately reacted to the events at Al-Aqsa Mosque. Only on Friday, October 9…Read More...
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