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  • Restaurant review: Experiencing culinary magic in Birzeit

    A trip to Hosh Al-Elleeya, a restaurant in the heart of Birzeit's old city. Legend has it that the finest restaurant in the West Bank is located in the university town of Birzeit. My friend Gil and I decided to journey there at the end of a day of discovery in Ramallah. We took a 40 sheqel cab there, winding through the northern suburbs, overlooked by the settlement of Beit El. The restaurant Hosh Al-Elleeya is located in the very heart of Birzeit's old city. It opens to a quiet square, surrounded by stone dwellings.  Nothing in Ramallah's modern bustle foretells…

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  • Israel prevents young Gazan from studying law in West Bank

    By Tania Hary Last Wednesday morning, for just under an hour, Israel's High Court heard arguments about whether or not five women from Gaza should be able to travel to their studies at Birzeit University in the West Bank. In a watershed moment for Gisha, which has brought no less than three similar cases in its seven years of existence, and for the first time in 12 years since a ban on travel for students between Gaza and the West Bank was first imposed, the court actually instructed the state to reconsider its position. That is, reconsider it for four of…

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  • A Christmas journey part 3: 'Tis the season

    << The Christmas Journey Home Ramallah - Wadi Qelt - Beir Zeit - Ramallah: popping into summer. My Australian readers will have to forgive me on this one, but Christmas is about winter. The first condition to knowing holiday spirit is a Jack Frost-bitten nose. This is why I was so glad to arrive last night from Taybeh into a freezing Ramallah. At 800 meters above sea level, this is one Middle Eastern city that can claim to have a decent winter. It even snows here once or twice a year. There's more to winter than simple chill. A charming…

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