File photo of houses and buildings destroyed by Israeli airstrikes
Israel has agreed to two out of three conditions set forth by Ankara for the normalisation of relations between the two countries, however it has refuses to lift the siege on Gaza, Turkey’s deputy prime minister has said.
Numan Kurtulmus told reporters following the weekly cabinet session that his country has set three conditions for normalising relations with Israel and restoring ties to pre-2010 levels: the first is for Israel to make a formal apology for the storming of the Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara ship by Israeli forces and the killing of 11 of its passengers; the second is to compensate the victims’ families; and the third is to end the naval and air blockade on the Gaza Strip.
In 2010, the Israeli naval forces stormed the Mavi Marmara ship, carrying activists and politicians from several countries to the Gaza Strip. Prominent figures who were on board the flotilla included Arab Member of Knesset Haneen Zoubi, among others.
Israeli soldiers killed 11 Turkish activists, which led to diplomatic relations between the two countries being severed.
(Source / 31.05.2016)
RAMALLAH, (PIC)– The military court in Ofer decided to hold a hearing for Palestinian professor Imad al-Barghouthi next Thursday to look into an indictment filed against him by the Israeli prosecution, according to the Palestinian Prisoner Society (PPS) on Monday. The Shin Bet had refused to comply with a court verdict ordering it to release the professor last Sunday after one month of administrative detention, with no charge. Barghouthi, 54, a renowned astrophysicist and professor at al-Quds University, was arrested on April 24 at Nabi Saleh checkpoint near Ramallah. The military prosecutor has accused him of inciting violence on his Facebook page.
(Source / 31.05.2016)
Six years after Israel’s most horrible naval crime in recent years, victims of the families still await justice, and Palestinians an end to the siege and occupation. The attack was harrowing, unprovoked and barbaric. Israel came for one thing, to kill and maim.
Here are 10 facts you need to know about Israel’s 2010 act of piracy:
1. The flotilla carried much needed aid such as food, medicine, school supplies and building materials. On board were human rights defenders, including a former President, MP’s, Nobel peace prize winner, diplomats, writers, and artists. In total, 688 people from 41 nations were on board the flotilla when it was raided.
2. On 31 May 2010, Israeli navy rained the flotilla with bullets from close ranges, while commandos landed on the largest aid ship, the Mavi Marmara. Autopsy results revealed that nine Turkish men (one also an American citizenship) on board Mavi Marmara were shot a total of 30 times. Four years later, another activist passed away of wounds sustained during the attack. Around 189 activists were also wounded. Israel dragged the ships to its ports, detained all passengers and confiscated all aid.
3. Furkan Dogan, 19, was an American activist who was brutally slaughtered by Israeli heavily armed commandos. Filming the Israeli assault, Furkan was shot in the face from point blank. When he was down, he was hit by more bullets that left him dead and unrecognizable. The U.S. administration still ignores this crime. A letter sent to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remains unanswered.
4. Israel instantly claimed the ships carried weapons to Gaza. Later, it claimed activists were armed, and the occupation Prime Minister Netanyahu claimed Israeli soldiers who committed the crimes acted in self-defense. Truth is no weapons were ever found, and….
5. On 22 March, occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized for what he described as “operational mistakes” during the raid. Israel also pledged to pay reparation to the families of the victims.
6. Israel stole more than 3 million dollars in aid, cash, electronic devices and personal properties. Moreover, activists’ credit cards were used by Israeli soldiers to buy beer(!!)
American nurse and aid worker Kathy Sheets, who survived the attack, has provided bank statements proving her bank card, taken by the Israeli forces during the attack, was used in Tel Aviv.
“[The solders] tried to use it without the PIN code and could not, but they could use it in a vending machine and had multiple accesses to my card to buy beer.”
“What it means is that I witnessed the Israeli Navy going and killing people and at the end buying beer with my card.”
Mocking the whole world, especially the victims, Israel indicted only ONE soldier of looting!
7. Turkey reacted fiercely to Israel’s crimes against the fleet, issuing indictments against those responsible for Israel’s assault on unarmed humanitarian aid workers. Later Turkey’s foreign minister Ahmet Davutoğlu announced that the Turkish government would downgrade its diplomatic relations with Israel and suspend all military relations with Israel.
8. Israel’s unprovoked attack was met with international uproar. Courts in Spain and South Africa found Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and 10 other senior Israeli officials liable for prosecution for crimes against humanity. A UN Human Rights Council (UNHCR) report into the raid found “clear evidence to support prosecutions” of crimes under the Geneva Convention, such as willful killing, torture, inhuman treatment and willfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health.
9. Gaza is still under siege and occupation. The UN report described the Gaza siege as “totally intolerable and unacceptable in the 21st century”.
10. Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip still honor the victims every year. A memorial was erected in the center of Gaza’s seaport. The memorial’s inscription bears the names of the Turkish solidarity activists killed by Israeli occupation commandos.
(Source / 31.05.2016)
Palestinian family ordered to evacuate their house in the Saadiyya neighborhood in East Jerusalem’s Old City
President of the Syrian Coalition Anas Alabdah stressed the need for the Kurdish National Council-affiliated Peshmerga forces to join the fight against ISIS in Syria.
In a meeting between a delegation of the Syrian Coalition, led by President Anas Alabdah, and President of the Kurdistan Region Massoud Barzani in the town of Salahuddin on Tuesday, Alabdah stressed that the presence of the Peshmerga forces on the Syrian territories would create balance on the ground and ensure safety of the Syrian people in general and the Kurds in particular.
The meeting discussed the latest political developments with regards to the Geneva talks and the negotiating process. Alabdah said that the political process in Syria is largely dominated by the US and Russia while the rest of the regional and international powers are marginalized. He stressed that breaking this monopoly will help produce more serious negotiations in order to reach a comprehensive and just political solution that achieves the aspirations of the Syrian people.
For his part, President of the Kurdistan Region Massoud Barzani reiterated support for the Syrian people in general and the Kurds in particular through their legitimate representative, namely the Kurdish National Council.
The Coalition’s delegation earlier today met with the Kurdistan Region’s Security Council Adviser Masrour Barzani.
The Coalition’s visit to the Kurdistan Region began on Monday and is scheduled to conclude on Wednesday. Along with Alabdah, the Coalition’s delegation included Abdul Ahad Steifo, Haitham Rahma, Hawass Akeed, Mohammed Jojah.
(Source: Syrian Coalition / 31.05.2016)
AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– Israeli Ofer Court sentenced a Palestinian for ten months and imposed on him a fine of 2000 shekels for allegedly using Facebook for “incitement.” Othmen Tamimi, 19, was given a 10-month sentence as well as a four-month suspended sentence for “incitement” on social media, according to the PIC reporter. Since the outbreak of Jerusalem Intifada, Israel has notably stepped up the arrests campaign against Palestinian online activists. In recent months, Israeli forces arrested 150 Palestinians over postings on Facebook that have been critical of Israeli crimes and violations against Palestinian people. Israelis on social media routinely and openly incite violence against Palestinians, especially during heightened periods of tensions such as last summer’s military offensive on Gaza, but none have yet faced prosecution.
(Source / 31.05.2016)
In fact, Israeli occupation did not expand the fishing zone as it had claimed
Less than one week after the Israeli announced expansion of the fishing zone in April, the Fishermen Syndication issued a statement denying any real expansion
Days of Palestine, Gaza Strip -Israeli occupation decided to reduce fishing zone off Gaza coast just two months after alleged expansion, Fishermen Syndication said on Monday.
Head of Fishermen Syndication Nizar Ayyash said that the Israeli occupation informed the Palestinian Authority (PA) about the reduction of the fishing zone to become six nautical miles instead of nine.
Early in April, the Israeli occupation claimed that it expanded the fishing zone to nine miles along the Mediterranean across the coast of the besieged Strip.
The PA officials reported the Israeli decision about reducing the fishing zone to the fishermen, who said that they did not feel any change regarding the Israeli measures being taken against them when they cross the six-mile-limit.
Less than one week after the Israeli announced expansion of the fishing zone in April, the Fishermen Syndication issued a statement denying any real expansion.
Commenting on the reduction decision, the spokesperson of the Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) said that the extension was planned to be implemented only during the fishing season. However, none of the media outlets reported this.
(Source / 31.05.2016)