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IOF arrests 3 youths in Ramallah town

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RAMALLAH, (PIC)– The Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) arrested Saturday evening three Palestinian youths after storming Beit Laqya town west of Ramallah in the West Bank. Local sources said Israeli forces stormed the town amid heavy firing of teargas bombs and arrested three local youths. The Israeli forces claimed that the three detainees were involved in stone-throwing attacks

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 7:17 pm

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IOF photographed beating Palestinian in al-Khalil

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AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– Haaretz Hebrew newspaper revealed Saturday that five Israeli soldiers were photographed violently beating a Palestinian man last Tuesday in al-Khalil south of the West Bank, before his arrest. Photographs taken at the scene showed that at least five Israeli infantry soldiers, from the Nahal Brigade, were surrounding the Palestinian during his arrest. One of the soldiers was seen kicking him, while another holding him by the throat. Another photo showed a soldier pinning the Palestinian to the ground with his knee. The Palestinian was seen barefoot in a street in the city. The Israeli army said the man was resisting arrest, but that the incident was being investigated. The army statement said it was carrying out security checks in the city due to recent attacks in the area. “During a routine security check, the Palestinian who was documented [in the photos] refused to be frisked. The forces had arrested the suspect. The troops’ conduct is being looked into and the incident is being investigated.” Photos of the arrest were soon published on social media networks. In the same context, the paper published that two Israeli soldiers from the Nahal Brigade were caught on camera overnight Wednesday-Thursday setting a Palestinian storehouse in the West Bank city of Nablus on fire. Security footage obtained by Channel 2 showed the troops approach a stockpile of planks belonging to a Palestinian lumber salesman, adjacent to the storehouse, while holding a burning object. The pair proceed to set the boards alight.  The two soldiers, wearing helmets and vests, leave the area as the fire spreads to the building. The army claimed it was investigating the incident.

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 7:12 pm

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Syrian Coalition Says Int’l Community’s Silence behind Barbaric Onslaught on Aleppo by Regime and Russia

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The Syrian Coalition strongly condemned the barbaric onslaught launched by the Assad regime and Russian forces on Aleppo, slamming the inaction of the international community and its failure to stop heinous crimes in Syria. The Coalition called upon peoples of the world, civil and human rights bodies, civil society organizations and activists across the world to act urgently in order to protect Syrian women and children.

In a statement released on Friday, the Coalition said that the Assad regime and the Russian invaders have resumed the aerial campaign on Aleppo, launching the fiercest airstrikes yet on the besieged rebel-held parts of the city.

“The bombardment has caused a tragedy in the city, with photos and videos coming from the city showing a situation that words cannot describe. This brutal onslaught, however, has so far been met by total silence by the international community,” the statement said.

The Coalition pointed out that this criminal campaign demonstrates how world powers seek to settle scores at the expense of the Syrian people.

“New Russian weapons are being used for the first time in the ongoing campaign on Aleppo, targeting women, children, civilian homes, schools, mosques, churches and hospitals. The ongoing onslaught on Aleppo, one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, has caused massive, widespread damage and is clearly aimed at killing and displacing as many civilians trapped inside as possible.”

The statement added: “Nonetheless, the international community continues to show inaction towards heinous crimes committed in broad daylight. The international community also seems ignorant of the fact that this inaction will not only bring shame on those who chose to remain silent, but also push some Syrians towards extremism with dire consequences affecting the region and beyond.”

“We are making our last appeal to save the lives of Syrian civilians. The governments of brotherly and friendly countries need to assume their responsibilities especially since the UN Security Council failed to bring peace or restore security, a fact that has been attested by the very members and heads of this organization. The UNSC, instead, proved to be an obstacle to achieving peace and security.”

The Coalition also urged governments of brotherly and friendly countries to take urgent action to deter these barbaric crimes and save the lives of the people of Aleppo and across Syria. It also called upon those countries to support the Syrian people’s struggle for peace, freedom and democracy.

(Source: Syrian Coalition / 24.09.2016)

 

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September 24, 2016 at 6:58 pm

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Netanyahu: I hope Obama won’t seek to establish a Palestinian state

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BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that he “hoped” US President Barack Obama would not seek to establish a Palestinian state at the United Nations on Saturday.In an interview aired on Israel’s Channel 2 on Saturday, Netanyahu was asked if Obama had promised him that he would not seek to establish a state of Palestine without Israel’s cooperation before the end of his term in January.”If you’re asking if he spoke to me about this, the answer is no,” The Jerusalem Post quoted Netanyahu as saying. “If you’re asking me if I am hoping that he won’t do this, the answer is yes.”The interview came two days after Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas made speeches at the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly, during which they exchanged heated accusations regarding Israeli settlement building, the Balfour Declaration, and each other’s commitment to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Over the past several months, France has been leading renewed peace efforts between Palestine and Israel with the aim of solving the decades-long conflict between the countries.However, Netanyahu staunchly rejected the multilateral French initiative in April, saying the “best way to resolve the conflict between Israel and Palestinians is through direct, bilateral negotiations” without Palestinian preconditions.While Russia reportedly expressed interest in conducting bilateral negotiations earlier this month, Netanyahu had welcomed Egypt’s bilateral efforts through restarting the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative.The Palestinian Authority has repeatedly expressed support for the French initiative, and in April shelved the submission of a new anti-settlement resolution to the UN out of fear that doing so could thwart progress of new French proposals, causing outrage among various Palestinian political factions.Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Lieberman and Netanyahu issued a joint statement in May expressing their support of reviving the Arab Peace Initiative for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, which called for an Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Palestinian territory in exchange for full normalization of ties with Arab states.Permanent Observer for the State of Palestine at the United Nations Riyad Mansour slammed the announcement by Netanyahu and Lieberman this month at a UN Security Council meeting in New York, saying that Israeli leaders were “belittling” the initiative and “failing to reciprocate time and time again and obstructing the revival of a political horizon.”All past efforts towards peace negotiations have failed to end the decades-long Israeli military occupation or bring Palestinians closer to an independent contiguous state.The most recent spate of negotiations led by the US collapsed in April 2014.Israel claimed the process failed because the Palestinians refused to accept a US framework document outlining the way forward, while Palestinians pointed to Israel’s ongoing settlement building and the government’s refusal to release veteran prisoners.While members of the international community have rested the solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the discontinuation of illegal Israeli settlements and the establishment of a two-state solution, a number of Palestinian activists have criticized the two-state solution as improbable, unsustainable and unlikely to bring durable peace, proposing instead a binational state with equal rights for Israelis and Palestinians.

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 6:55 pm

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Five days, four children shot dead

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Mohammad Thalji Kayid Thalji al-Rajabi, 15, was shot dead by Israeli forces

Mohammad Thalji al-Rajabi, 15, was shot dead after allegedly stabbing an Israeli soldier at the Gilbert military checkpoint in Hebron’s Old City

Ramallah, September 22, 2016—Israeli forces shot dead four Palestinian children in Hebron, during the most concentrated period of deadly violence in the West Bank since June.

In separate incidents between September 16 and September 20, four Palestinian teenagers were fatally shot by Israeli soldiers in Hebron. Seven Palestinians have been killed by Israeli soldiers in less than a week, marking the highest concentration of Palestinian deaths since June, when three Palestinians were killed in under 48 hours, according to Ma’an News Agency. Earlier this month, another child, Abdul-Rahman Dabbagh, was shot dead by an Israeli soldier in Gaza.

“International law requires that intentional lethal force is only used when lesser means would be insufficient to apprehend a suspect,” said Brad Parker, attorney and international advocacy officer at DCIP. “Recent evidence suggests that Israeli forces are implementing a ‘shoot-to-kill’ policy, yet systemic impunity is normal and accountability extremely rare.”

Issa Salem Mahmoud Tarairah, 15, was killed on September 20 by Israeli forces, who alleged that he was carrying a knife and intended to stab soldiers at a checkpoint near Bani Na’im, in the southern West Bank governorate of Hebron. Amir Jamal Ahmed al-Rajaby, 16, was gunned down by Israeli soldiers near the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron the day before. An Israeli police spokesperson claimed that Amir was walking toward border police while brandishing a knife when he was killed.

On September 16, Fares Moussa Mohammad Khaddour, 17, was fatally shot by Israeli soldiers while allegedly committing a car ramming attack near the Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba, in Hebron. Just two hours later, Mohammad Thalji Kayid Thalji al-Rajaby, 15, was shot dead after allegedly stabbing an Israeli soldier at the Gilbert military checkpoint near the closed military zone of Tel Rumeida in Hebron’s Old City.

Earlier this month, on September 9, Israeli soldiers stationed across the border between Gaza and Israel fatally shot Abdul-Rahman Ahmad Dabbagh, 15. Though witnesses claimed live ammunition was used to disperse crowds protesting at the border, the Israeli army stated that they only used tear gas to contain the protest. DCIP is still investigating the circumstances surrounding Abdul-Rahman’s death.

According to DCIP figures, 52 Palestinian children from the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, have been killed since October 5, 2015, all except one at the hands of Israeli forces. Of those, 42 were accused of attempting to commit some form of an attack.

In several cases, DCIP found that children did not pose a direct, mortal threat at the time they were killed, suggesting that Israeli forces are implementing a ‘shoot-to-kill’ policy. Israel routinely defends or denies using lethal force against children and accountability is extremely rare.

Only one incident, the fatal shooting of Nadeem Nawara, 17, by an Israeli border policeman in May 2014, has resulted in an indictment. The trial of the accused border policeman is currently ongoing.

“It is troubling that Israeli forces consider live ammunition a proportionate response to stone-throwing,”said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, Accountability Program director at DCIP. “International law dictates that lethal force should be a last resort and that alleged offenders are apprehended and afforded due process. This policy demonstrates a disregard for the law and human life.”

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 2:48 pm

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Israeli court sentences Palestinian to 9 years in prison for stabbing, injuring 2 Israelis

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JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — An Israeli court sentenced a Palestinian youth to nine years in prison on Thursday after convicting him of carrying a stabbing attack against two Israeli teenagers in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem in 2015.John William Qaqish, a 21-year-old Palestinian resident of East Jerusalem’s Old City, was convicted ofstabbing and injuring two 17-year-old Israelis in May 2015 as they were heading to the Western Wall in the Old City late at night.A lawyer for the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS), Mufid al-Hajj, told Ma’an that an Israeli judge sentenced Qaqish to nine years in prison, an additional three-year suspended sentence, as well as payment of thousands of shekels in compensation to the victims.Al-Hajj said that the Israeli prosecution had requested that Qaqish be sentenced to 20 years in prison by claiming that his attack was religiously and ideologically motivated, adding that Qaqish had reportedly told Israeli security forces during his interrogation that he had been “very affected” by the assault of a Palestinian woman by Israeli police near the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, and that he was an active member of the Fatah movement.Since a wave of unrest began in October, Israel has come under criticism for passing a series of amendments and proposing various laws aimed at targeting Palestinian youth with disproportionately harsh sentences, including 10 years in prison for stone throwing.According to Ma’an documentation, 230 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis, and 32 Israelis have been killed by Palestinians since Oct. 1, 2015. The unrest has been characterized by a number of small-scale attacks, the majority of which have targeted Israeli military personnel.

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 2:45 pm

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At least 20 killed in Saudi-led airstrike in Yemen

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Yemenis carry belongings they recovered from the rubble of buildings destroyed during Saudi-led air strikes the previous day, on September 22, 2016 in the rebel-held Yemeni port city of Hodeida. (AFP/Stringer)

Yemenis carry belongings they recovered from the rubble of buildings destroyed during Saudi-led air strikes the previous day, on September 22, 2016 in the rebel-held Yemeni port city of Hodeida

At least 20 civilians have been killed by an airstrike in Yemen.

According to local officials the strike by the Saudi-led coalition hit a residential area of the Red Sea port city Hodeidah.

Leaders of the Houthi militia are thought to occupy the city’s presidential palace, and have been the target of air raids.

This strike is the latest in a bloody war that has claimed the lives of many civilians, with many air raids hitting hospitals, markets and even schools.

The fighting between the Saudi-led coalition and Iran-allied Houthi rebels has killed upwards of 10,000 since 2015.

Aid is desperately needed in Yemen.

On Wednesday the Norwegian Refugee Council delivered food and cooking materials to the capital, Sanaa.

Along with aid, the UN have attempted to broker a peace agreement, but talks collapsed last month, and Houthi forces resumed shelling across the border into Saudi Arabia.

(Source / 24.09.2016)

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September 24, 2016 at 2:38 pm

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