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freedom of movement

  • Returning to Yaffa, but only as a ‘tourist’

    It is hours — days, weeks, maybe some months if we’re fortunate — before my permit expires, when I would have to make my way back to the West Bank, or else Israel will deem my presence in my own ancestral city ‘illegal.’ By Mariam Barghouti If I were given a dollar for the number of times diplomats, journalists, activists, and policy-makers have asked me “Have you thought about speaking with Israelis?” I could buy myself a chateau in Yaffa. [tmwinpost] I choose Yaffa because that question rings loudly in my head whenever I visit the city. It is where…

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  • My humiliation does not make Israel more secure

    The 100-mile journey of leaving Gaza took 12 hours, six checkpoints, and interrogations so humiliating that a year later, I am still reliving the trauma. By Anas Almassri On July 31, 2018 the Palestinian Civil Affairs office called me at 10:08 a.m., while I was sitting at my desk in Gaza on what had begun as an ordinary workday morning. The caller informed me that the Israeli authorities had issued my permit to leave Gaza in order to study abroad, and that I had to depart immediately. “The [deportation] shuttle is waiting for you,” said the caller. “You must make…

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  • When an American in the IDF meets a Palestinian American in Hebron

    An American serving in the Israeli army in Hebron says that in her job granting and denying Palestinians permission to work and travel, it's a 'conversation starter' to meet Palestinians who back home would have full rights like her. The video below was published Sunday by COGAT, the unit of the Israeli Defense Ministry charged with administering the military occupation of the Palestinian territories. COGAT has a rich history of producing tone-deaf videos seemingly meant to do little more than make COGAT look like the benevolent arm of the occupation, for which Palestinians should be nothing but grateful. (See here,…

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  • Israel's 'humanitarian' offer to Tlaib made me cringe. Here's why

    As the director of an organization that promotes the right to freedom of movement in Gaza, when I heard that Israel is offering you the chance to make a ‘humanitarian’ visit to your family, I felt a familiar cringe. An open letter to Reps. Tlaib and Omar. By Tania Hary Dear Representative Omar and Representative Tlaib, We were meant to meet this coming Sunday evening. I was so pleased when I heard that you had decided to include the Gaza Strip on your itinerary, figuratively if not literally, given that you wouldn't be able to physically travel there. You had arranged…

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  • What it takes to organize a film screening in Gaza

    Getting an entry permit from the Israeli army, securing permission to screen the film from Hamas, and how to prepare for inevitable power cuts are only some of the hurdles. Imagine what it takes to coordinate humanitarian aid. By Jen Marlowe We had been talking about organizing the Gaza premiere of Naila and the Uprising for months, but it wasn’t until mid-summer that my colleague in Gaza, Fadi Abu Shammalah, and I began the preparations in earnest. [tmwinpost] Fadi and I discussed the merits of the two potential venues that could accommodate a film screening of the scale we were anticipating. The first…

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  • Palestinian activists break Ramadan fast at Hebron checkpoint

    The restrictions on movement between different neighborhoods of Hebron meant that a number of Palestinian activists, who were on their way to an iftar meal in Tel Rumeida, were compelled to break their fast sitting on the ground at a checkpoint instead. Ramadan, the holiest month for Muslims across the world, is a time for family get-togethers, especially around the Iftar meal, which breaks the day-long fast every evening. Extended families gathering for a meal — what could be more trivial than that? Except if it happens in Hebron, where nothing is as trivial as it seems. [tmwinpost] Several members of…

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  • The 'silent' war on Gaza's hospitals

    The director of a hospital destroyed during 'Protective Edge' has managed to rebuild part of the facility. Now he has about a month's worth of fuel left to keep its back-up generators running. Without them, the hospital faces another complete shutdown.  At the height of Israel's Operation Protective Edge, El Wafa Medical Rehabilitation Hospital was the target of fierce attacks from Israeli positions along Gaza's eastern border, just over a kilometer away. Speaking to +972 at the time, the hospital's director, Dr. Basman Alashi, described panic among his patients but insisted that he and his staff would continue to care for them — even if it…

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  • Guess which of these human rights Israel guarantees to Palestinians

    The right to equality? The right to free movement in and out of the country? How about the right to freedom from arbitrary arrest and exile? Or the right to marriage and family? By Fady Khoury Everyone on Facebook is playing a game where they post nine concerts they’ve been to and one they haven’t. The idea is your friends have to guess which band you haven’t seen. [tmwinpost] I want to play too, but I've been to only two concerts in my life, both of which were Mashrou' Leila's. So I thought of a different way to play. Here…

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  • PHOTOS: When you could ride a train from Gaza City to Tel Aviv

    The rail line, which is almost unimaginable today considering the blockade and permit regime, ran for just under a year — until the outbreak of the 1973 Yom Kippur War. It’s been nearly 45 years since you could hop on a train in Gaza City and ride all the way to Tel Aviv, a situation that is almost unimaginable considering the blockade and severe restrictions on movement enforced by Israel today. The rail line, which ran for just under a year, was operated mostly for Palestinian laborers coming to work in the central Israeli city. The following photos, from the…

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  • What Christians of the Arab world are facing this Easter

    From the church bombings in Egypt to the restrictions on movement in Palestine to an exodus from Iraq, Christians of most Middle Eastern countries are at serious risk. By James J. Zogby This year there will no Easter celebrations for Coptic Christians in Upper Egypt. Out of concern for their security and out of respect for the 45 Christians who were victims of two horrific suicide bombing attacks on Palm Sunday, their bishop declared that Easter services would be limited in his diocese to mass, "without any festivities." [tmwinpost] That Holy Week began for Egyptians with news of those bombings…

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  • Denying access to health is a silent tool of occupation

    The Palestinian health system is fragmented into three segregated territories — East Jerusalem, Gaza and the West Bank — and Israel controls access to and from each of them. By Dana Moss While discussions over health in Israel often focus on the healthcare provided to Israeli citizens, Palestinians in the occupied territories struggle to secure even the most basic components of their right to health. On World Health Day, it is important to remember that the obstacles to healthcare faced by Palestinians are a more silent side of the occupation, less visible than the construction of settlements or the razing…

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  • Israel deems comatose Gaza man a security threat

    Abed al-Karim Abu Haloub has been in a coma in Gaza for over 40 days, requiring treatment in the West Bank. Israel repeatedly refused to allow him to leave. Israeli authorities repeatedly refused to allow a Palestinian man from the Gaza Strip to receive medical treatment in the West Bank, denying his travel permit on security grounds, despite the fact that he has been in a coma for over a month. [tmwinpost] Physicians for Human Rights—Israel (PHR) attempted to intervene on the Abed al-Karim Abu Haloub's behalf, twice appealing the decision to reject his permit request to no avail. The fact that…

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  • Driving while Palestinian, across the Green Line

    The very nomenclature of ’48 Palestinians and ’67 Palestinians shows how the Nakba remains at the root of Palestinian fragmentation. Roads function as a prime instrument of separation between the two. By Amahl Bishara Israeli policies preventing Palestinians from entering Israel and limiting Palestinian movement within the occupied territories have shaped Palestinian society, and the economy and politics in the West Bank and Gaza Strip for decades. What Israel terms “closure” is made material not only in checkpoints and roadblocks but also in the green license plates of cars registered to holders of Palestinian Authority identity cards (’67 Palestinians). However, less often explored are…

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