The remaining Palestinians in the Al-Naqab area, located in the southern area of the Palestinian territories occupied in 1948, are seeking to internationalise their case. They are also raising awareness about the racism they are subjected to by Zionists who are aiming to seize their land, forcefully expel them from it and relocated them to allocated areas that could be called racist "ghettos", similar to those prevalent during Apartheid in South Africa.
- 21 May 2013
During a visit to the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, Finnish foreign minister, Erkki Tuomioja, discussed the humanitarian issues facing the Sector and promised a $1.5m increase in his country's support to UNRWA.
Tuomioja accompanied UNRWA staff on a short tour to several places in the Strip, including the University of Palestine where he was offered him an Honorary Doctorate for his efforts toward international humanitarian justice.
A Palestinian organisation located in the territories occupied in 1948 that maintains Islamic sanctities and monitors violations against them by the Zionist occupation authorities has said that, "Zionist gangs have been using malicious methods and means of destruction and Judaisation of Islamic and Christian sanctities in order to alter real Palestinian landmarks over past 65 years in what is known as the "Nakba" or [Palestinian Catastrophe]." It also noted that this "still goes on today at the hands of the Israeli establishment and its various branches."
Chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, said on Monday that Israeli settlements are the main obstacle before efforts to revive the peace process, and that the Palestinian Authority is prepared to join 63 international organisations and conventions but is holding back to give Kerry's efforts a chance.
Speaking at a meeting of a committee concerned with Palestinians exercising their inalienable rights in New York, Erekat said: "In total 6,000 Israeli settlements have been approved between 2009 and 2012. This is an average of 11 settlement units every day."
There is an on-going conspiracy against the Christian presence in the Palestinian territories, said Hanna Issa Hadithah, an activist who supports the Christian presence in Palestine.
"The [Israeli] authorities bear primary responsibility for emptying the land of the Christ of Christians," Hanna Issa said in an interview held in Ramallah.
- 21 May 2013
The European Union yesterday denied reports by Israeli media outlets regarding the postponement of its decision to label Israeli settlement products.
A statement was made by the EU delegation in Israel saying "Contrary to what was recently reported in Israeli media, work on the enforcement of EU legislation with regard to the labelling of settlement products has not been delayed."
- 21 May 2013
US Secretary of State called the Israeli ambassador to the US, Michael Oren, last week demanding an explanation about planned legalisation of four Israeli outposts in the occupied West Bank, Israeli newspaper Haaretz said on Tuesday.
Haaretz reported a senior Israeli official as saying that Kerry personally phoned Oren after he had received a report about the Israeli intentions to legalise the four outposts. The official said that Kerry rebuked Oren.
Al-Tadamun human rights organisation said on Tuesday that the Israeli occupation has renewed the administrative detention of 11 Palestinians, including a former hunger striker and two Palestinian lawmakers.
The Israeli authorities announced on Tuesday that it would return the allowed fishing area off the coast of Gaza to what was agreed upon within the context of last November's truce agreement that ended the war.
Radio Israel said that the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and his Defence Minister, Moshe Ya'alon, approved the decision to expand the area in which Gaza fishermen are allowed to fish to six miles off the coast. It was reduced to three miles two months ago.
On Tuesday morning, Israeli authorities destroyed two Palestinian homes in the Khellat al-Ein neighbourhood to the east of the old city of Jerusalem claiming they had been built without permission.
Witnesses said that large numbers of Israeli forces accompanied by two bulldozers approached the area at 6am and besieged the two houses.
Israeli forces responded on Monday night to missile fire they claim originated from the Syrian side of the Golan Heights. No casualties have been reported, a spokesman for the Israeli forces said.
- 20 May 2013
The 11th annual "Palestinians in Europe Conference", organized by the General Secretariat of the Palestinians in Europe Conference and The Palestinian Return Centre (PRC), was held on Saturday in the Belgian capital, Brussels, and was attended by several Palestinian representatives and influential figures, under the theme "The Signs of Return are Blossoming".
The conference is considered one of the biggest Palestinian gatherings held in Europe annually and is an indication of the Palestinians' dedication to their identity, which the occupation is seeking to erase.
- 20 May 2013
- Middle East
On May 7th, 2013, the United States and Russia agreed to hold an international conference to end the war and "prevent the dismantlement of Syria". The agreement was announced by US Secretary of State, John Kerry, and his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, after talks in Moscow, before which Kerry met with Russian President, Vladimir Putin.
The scheduled conference aims to revive the Geneva agreement, also known as the "Geneva Communiqué'", reached in June 2012 but has not been put into effect due to the unresolved issue of Syrian President, Bashar Al-Assad's fate.
- 20 May 2013
- Book Review
Author: Norma Hashim
Paperback: 125 pages
Publisher: Islamic Human Rights Commission
Review by Ramona Wadi
Edited and published during the Palestinian prisoners' hunger strike, The Prisoners' Diaries is a distressing fragment of testimonies from Palestinians whose deterioration in Israeli jails has become a fact of life, rather than a blatant violation of human rights. The resilience against the occupation and a lack of global outrage against torture and apartheid practices resonated with irregular frequencies within the international community, as leaders relegate human rights to the vestiges of redundant diplomacy.
- Mahathir Mohamad: Egypt can achieve a great economic renaissance
- Israel cancels UNESCO mission to Jerusalem
- Is Muhammad Al-Durrah still alive?
- National Salvation Front shrinks and disintegrates
- Israel resumes use of sniper units to disperse Palestinian demonstrations
- Missiles fired into the occupied Golan Heights
- Tunisia's Nahda-led government takes on the Salafist challenge
- Gaza fishermen face heavy losses as Israel continues attacks on fishing boats
- European Union postpones labelling of settlement products
- Pew Survey: 53 per cent of Egyptians satisfied with President's performance