[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Palestine and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Palestine Page co-editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each roundup to Palestine@jadaliyya.com.]
The Occupation Forces
'Operation failed': Details Emerge on Israeli Covert Op Gone Awry New details have emerged about a botched Israeli intelligence operation in the Gaza Strip in November 2018, in which two Hamas members and the head Israeli operative, “Meni,” were killed. For the first time, information on the botched operation was released that revealed the Israeli operatives to be part of the Sayeret Matkal unit.
Palestinian Teen is Shot Dead in Army Attack Near Hebron Settlements Israeli soldiers shot dead a Palestinian teenager on Saturday night in the town of Beit Awwa, west of Hebron City in the southern occupied West Bank. Although three Palestinian civilians were shot at by Occupation Forces, two lived. The one who died, identified as Khaled al-Masalma, eighteen, was left to bleed helplessly, as the soldiers denied Palestinian medics access to the scene, and he was announced dead of his critical wounds a few minutes later.
Israeli Soldiers Raid, Ransack Home of Palestinian Who Died in Prison From Cancer The soldiers raided the home of the deceased prisoner, Sami Abu Diyak, in Silat al-Dahr village in the north of the West Bank, thoroughly searched it, and ransacked it while holding the entire family hostage in one room after interrogating them, said Ragheb Abu Diyak, a family member.
IOF Kill Palestinian Teen Near Hebron Israeli occupation soldiers opened fire on three Palestinian civilians near Beit Awwa, seriously injuring one of them, Badawi Khaled Masalmeh, eighteen years old. He was left to bleed helplessly as the soldiers denied medics access to the scene, and he was announced dead of his critical wounds a few minutes later.
16-year-old Palestinian Teen Said Killed by Live Israeli Fire in Gaza Protest Israeli forces killed at least one Palestinian and injured many others as the forces attacked dozens of protesters taking part in the weekly March of Return at Gaza-Israel border, according to medical sources. Fahd Mohammad al-Astal, the youth killed, was just sixteen.
Israeli Aircraft Attack Hamas Sites After Rocket Fire From Gaza Israeli aircraft attacked several sites linked to the military wing of Gaza’s Hamas early on Wednesday in what it said was a response to rocket fire from the Palestinian enclave. Neither the rockets from Israel nor Palestine were reported to have resulted in injuries, but Israel claims to have destroyed a weapons facility.
10 Days After His Wife And Sons Were Killed in Mistaken Israeli Attack, Gaza Man Dies The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza has confirmed that a Palestinian man died on 22 November from serious wounds he suffered when Israeli soldiers fired a missile at the family home ten days prior. The missile also killed Firas, two; Salem, three; Moath, seven; Mohannad, twelve; Waseem, twenty-three; Rasmi, forty-five; and Mariam, forty-five. The only survivor, a toddler named Farah, lived because her brother shielded her, dying in the process.
Palestinian Shot in Back Amid Laughter in Shocking Video Comes Forward The grainy video was made in 2018 by Israeli soldiers and films Karam Qawasmi in a tunnel as a sponge-tipped bullet strikes him in the back. He then falls to the ground. Now Qawasmi says that the entire event lasted hours, with Israeli soldiers detaining him, beating him, and further abusing him after he was shot
Palestinian Killed By Israeli Military Bulldozer Israeli soldiers leaving the city of Hebron in an armored bulldozer crashed into a car this morning, killing the Palestinian father at the wheel and severely injuring his son. The man who was killed was named as fifty-four-year-old Mohammed Nassar al-Nawajaa, according to the Palestinian Popular Resistance Committee.
Israel: Arab Lawmaker Attacked By Right-wing Activists Right-wing activists attacked Ahmad Tibi, a member of the Knesset for the Arab Movement for Change, on Saturday while he was entering an event in the central city of Ramat Hasharon, Anadolu Agency reports. Tibi claimed that members of the Arab-majority Joint List would have been assassinated if a minority government was formed with their support.
Details of Draft Deal Between Likud, Blue and White Revealed by Israel TV With just one week left until Israel is forced to head to a third election, the details of a draft deal between Likud and Blue and White have been reported by the Times of Israel. The deal reportedly features a power-sharing agreement in the cabinet, with Likud retaining control of religious matters, the annexation of the West Bank, a change of the Basic Laws to ensure the deal would have to be respected, and Netanyahu being prime minister for the first several months.
Ministry of Education Suspends Classes in Protest Against US Settlement Policies The Ministry of Education announced on Monday a part-time suspension in all schools on Tuesday, in compliance with the decision of the Palestine Liberation Organization factions rejecting the American-Israeli decision on the settlements, closing down the Directorate of Jerusalem Education, and continued attempts to strike education in the holy city.
Abbas Issues Decree to Renew the Term of PMA Governor Office President Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential decree renewing the term of office of the governor of the Palestine Monetary Authority, Azzam Shawwa, for a second term that will run until 2023.
Palestinian Factions Agree to Abbas Election Request Fourteen Palestinian factions have agreed with President Mahmoud Abbas's request to hold parliamentary and presidential elections. But the Fatah leader is yet to hear from his main rival, Hamas. Major hurdles remain before a date could be set, including potential obstacles imposed by Israel or the United States, given that Hamas could again win a large share of the vote.
Third Israel Election Looms After Failure to Form Government Israel moved closer towards holding a third election in less than a year on Wednesday after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's main challenger failed to form a government.
Elections Commission Concludes Consultations on General Elections on a Positive Note The CEC delegation met on 26 November with Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip and received Hamas written consent to participate in the upcoming general elections which will be held in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including Jerusalem. Abbas is now expected to set a date for the upcoming general elections.
Israel Plans to Stop Returning Bodies of Palestinians All bodies of Palestinians killed by Israelis are to be held by the occupation authorities and not returned to their families for burial, regardless of their political affiliations, newly installed Defense Minister Naftali Bennett has decreed. The Palestinian Authority condemned the decision, saying that it proves that Israel is a “terrorist entity.”
Irish Foreign Minister Visits the Gaza Strip and Meets with UNRWA Students from Jabalia Irish Tánaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Mr Simon Coveney visited the Gaza Strip on 4 December and met Palestine refugee students from the UNRWA school in Jabalia refugee camp. Following the meeting with students, Minister Coveney said: “I was pleased to inform UNRWA that Ireland will provide an additional 2.5 million euros” and stressed Ireland’s commitment to solidarity with Palestine.
UN & EU Begin Expansion of Southern Gaza Seawater Desalination Plant to Help Address Shortages of Safe Drinking Water United Nations, European Union, and Palestinian Authority representatives met on 4 December to inaugurate the expansion of the Southern Gaza Seawater Desalination Plant.
Erekat calls on Ireland to recognize state of Palestine During a meeting with Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney, Saeb Erekat, secretary-general of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), called on the Irish government to recognize the state of Palestine on the pre-4th June 1967 borders.
Hamas Haniyeh to Leave Gaza on Foreign Tour The head of Hamas political bureau, Ismail Haniyeh is expected to leave the Gaza Strip on Monday on a foreign tour to several Arab countries as well as Russia, Arabi21 news site reported. An unnamed official source in Hamas told the news site that Haniyeh will hold talks with senior Egyptian intelligence officials in Cairo.
Palestine Threatens to Sever Relations With US After U-turn on Israeli Settlements Yet again, President Mahmoud Abbas has warned that Palestine could fully sever relations with the United States after the White House defied international law and backed Israeli settlements built on occupied Palestinian land.
Belgian Trade Mission to Israel And Palestine Has Been Cancelled Former Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo of the Walloon Socialist Party stated that the reason for the Walloon government’s withdrawal from the trade mission was “the lack of progress in the peace process, the lack of progress on the ground and the violations of important parts of the Geneva Convention by Israel.”
+120 US Congressmen Warn Pompeo’s Declaration Could Lead to a Deadlier Conflict More than 120 US Congressmen have sent an urgent letter to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, urging him to reverse his announcement earlier this month in which he considered Israeli settlements in the West Bank as legal.
President Abbas Orders Medical Staff Sent to Albania Following Earthquake President Mahmoud Abbas gave instructions to send medical staff and food to Albania following an earthquake that hit the country on 26 November. Albania was hit by a powerful 6.4 magnitude earthquake that killed at least six people and injured hundreds of others while also causing panic in the capital, Tirana.
UK Universities Invest $580m in Companies Complicit in Israel’s Crimes UK universities invest an estimated 450 million pound in companies complicit in Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights, including through supplying weapons and technology to the Israeli military, and investing in Israel’s illegal settlement economy, new research has shown.
US Worried Israel May Attack Iran to Save Netanyahu Israeli newspaper Haaretz published an article by Amos Harel revealing the essence of discussions between US and Israeli military officials and stated that the discussions were about Iran. According to Harel, Israel is afraid that the United States will desert the Iran issue while America is worried Israel may carry out a unilateral attack against Tehran, forcing Washington into a war.
Settlers and Illegal Settlements
New Settlement Operations in Occupied Jerusalem to Change Its Historical Features The Israeli Housing Ministry and the Israeli Occupation Municipality in Jerusalem have launched a large settlement scheme to construct eleven thousand settlement units on the Qalandia airport lands to expand the Attarot settlement. Construction of 176 new settlement units in the Nof Zion settlement on the Mount of Olives has also begun.
Israel Unveils New Plan in Ibrahimi Mosque The Israeli Channel 7 on Monday unveiled an Israeli plan to make significant changes inside the Ibrahimi Mosque in the center of Hebron. Coordinator of the territory affairs of the Israeli government, Kamil Abu Rokon, sent a letter to the Hebron municipality months ago asking them to ratify the work, telling them that the rejection of this project would mean putting the military hand on the area and carry out repair work unilaterally–essentially coercing them into ratifying an illegal move.
Israeli Settlers Raze Lands Near Nablus Bulldozers of fanatic Israeli settlers Wednesday razed Palestinian-owned lands in the village of Burin, to the south of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus, according to local sources according to Ghassan Daghlas.
Israel Approves $11.5m in Extra Funding for West Bank Settlements Israel approved an extra forty million shekels for settlements in the occupied West Bank yesterday, reported Haaretz.
Poll: 40% of Israeli Settlers Near Gaza Consider Moving As many as forty percent of Israeli settlers in settlements adjacent to the Gaza Strip, known colloquially as the Gaza envelope, do not feel safe and are considering leaving, a new Knesset poll has found.
Car Set Ablaze, Inciting Graffiti Sprayed in Suspected West Bank Hate Crimes “In two separates ‘price tag’ attacks, Star of David was spray-painted, and tires were slashed in Deir Ammar, and some thirty tresses were damaged in As-Sawiya.”
Thousands of Settlers Storm Ibrahimi Mosque Thousands of Israeli settlers on Saturday stormed the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron under heavy military protection, while Muslim worshipers were not allowed to enter it for prayer.
Stone-throwing Settlers Injure Toddler in the Head A Palestinian toddler sustained a moderate injury in the head when hardcore Jewish settlers, under Israeli army protection, attacked Palestinians’ homes with stones in the neighborhood of Tel Rumeida in Hebron, south of the West Bank, local sources said.
Boycott, Divest, and Sanction Movement
More Steps Up Tools And Means of Boycotting Israeli Apartheid System Writer Mahmoud Zaben outlines the ways in which the BDS movement has advanced in recent days. Along with the European Union Supreme Court’s decision to enforce the labeling of settlement goods, Harvard University and Harvard Law School organizations have had a number of actions approving economic and academic boycotts of Israel.
Bennett Orders Sanctions Against Palestinian Activists Abroad Israeli Minister of Army Naftali Bennett on Tuesday issued a written order imposing international economic sanctions on Palestinian activists abroad, as well as members of Lebanon’s Hizballah party. The Hebrew media launched Bennett’s decision, stating that it was a move that had not been taken before.
New Freedom Flotilla Will Sail For Gaza in Summer 2020 The International Coalition of the Freedom Flotilla has announced that it will sail again to the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2020 to try to break the siege on Gaza. The decision comes after a two-day meeting in the Dutch city of Rotterdam, attended by representatives of solidarity organizations in support of Palestinian rights, from ten European countries including America, Canada, and New Zealand.
US: Brown University Votes to Divest From Businesses Violating Palestinian Rights Brown University yesterday voted in favor of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement yesterday, which seeks to financially pressure Israel into ending the occupation of the Palestinian territories and allow full equality for its Arab-Palestinian citizens.
Activists Deliver Over 4000 Letters Asking Attorney General to Investigate the Charitable Status of JNF UK Human rights activists have handed in over four thousand letters from members of the public to the Attorney General, Geoffrey Cox QC, calling on him to launch an immediate investigation into the charity status of JNF UK.
Bishops Oppose Illegal Settlements, Stand in Solidarity with Church in Holy Land The Bishops of England and Wales issued a statement opposing the continued Israeli construction of illegal settlements in occupied Palestinian territories. Their statement against settlements was framed in terms of the threat posed to a possible two-state solution by settlement construction.
92% of House Democrats Condemned BDS, But New Poll Shows Many Dem Voters Support Movement Despite 209 Democrats in the US House of Representatives voting to condemn the BDS Movement, it appears to be gaining support among Democratic voters. New polling from Data for Progress suggests that no such overwhelming consensus exists among Democratic voters.
‘No place like it on earth’ — Kraft launches million-dollar contest to defend Israel from BDS New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft won the 2019 Genesis Prize at the beginning of the year, receiving a million-dollar award. At the ceremony in June, Kraft pledged the award money and an additional twenty million dollars to fight BDS. He has now announced that he is teaming up with the Genesis Prize Foundation to create a competition called “Speak Out Israel” which will provide grants of at least fifty thousand dollars to Israeli nonprofits that provide positive PR for Israel to fight the BDS movement.
Bolivia Will Re-establish Diplomatic Ties with Israel After a Decade-long Dispute After the military forced Bolivia’s elected president, Evo Morales, from power this month, the new interim foreign minister of the country’s self-appointed president, Jeanine Áñez, announced that the country would be re-establishing ties with Israel.
ICC Prosecutor Again Refuses to Investigate Gaza Flotilla Raid The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has again refused to open an investigation into the deadly 2010 Israeli raid on the Mari Marmara ship carrying aid to the besieged Gaza Strip, which killed ten civilians. Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has acknowledged that war crimes may have been committed in the raid but decided that the case was not serious enough to merit an ICC probe.
Two Prisoners Hunger-striking For Over 70 Days Rushed to Hospital PPS said that the Ahmad Zahran and Mosab al-Hindi, were rushed to the Israeli Kaplan hospital from after their health conditions deteriorated, especially that they have stopped drinking water for three days and been hunger striking for over two months in a row.
Palestine Unanimously Elected to The ICC’s ASP’s Bureau The eighteenth session of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court currently held in The Hague unanimously elected on 2 December the State of Palestine as a member of its Bureau.
Family of Palestinian Who Died in Prison Appeals to Pressure Israel to Release His Body The family of prisoner Sami Abu Diak, who recently died from cancer while in Israeli custody, called on human rights and humanitarian institutions to promptly intervene and pressure the Israeli authorities to release his body for burial, and not to withhold his body in mortuary fridges or bury him in the “cemeteries of numbers.”
Palestinian Prisoners to Begin Open Hunger Strike in Israeli Ashkelon Prison Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli Ashkelon Prison announced on Tuesday their intention to go on an open-ended hunger strike in protest against escalating repressive measures by the prison administration. The Palestinian Prisoners’ Club said thirty-three prisoners will go on an open-ended hunger strike beginning Wednesday.
Prisoner Dies at Israeli Hospital After Denied Treatment The Palestinian Prisoners and Ex-Prisoner Affairs Committee on Tuesday morning announced that prisoner Sami Abu Diak (thirty-seven) died at an Israeli hospital after he was systematically denied specialized medical care, leading to serious complications that resulted in his death.
Palestinian Prisoners in Israeli Jails Declare Protest Steps in Mourning of Prisoner Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails declared a number of protest steps, including returning all meals for three days in mourning of prisoner Sami Abu Diak, who died on 26 November from cancer while behind Israeli bars, according to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society.
After Years of Investigations, Netanyahu Charged With Bribery, Fraud, Breach of Trust Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been formally charged with bribery, fraud, and breach of trust, marking the first time in Israel’s history that a sitting prime minister has been indicted on criminal charges.
Environment, Economy, and Other
Palestine Lost $48 Billion Between 2000-2017 Due to Occupation The fiscal cost of occupation for the Palestinian people, over the 2000-2017 period, is estimated at 47.7 billion dollars, or thrice the size of the Palestinian economy in 2017, and it continues to rise, according to the latest UNCTAD report to the United Nations General Assembly.
Amarneh Now Has a Temporary Cosmetic Eye-shaped Lens Palestinian photojournalist, Moath Amarneh now has a cosmetic eye-shaped lens in the place of his left eye which was removed. The eye was placed at a cosmetic eye center in Haifa and will be replaced by a permanent lens once the fractures in Moath’s face are healed and the risk is gone. Amarneh still has a bullet landed in his skull, which could not be removed due to the sensitivity of the area.
US Charity Building Gaza Hospital Offers Volunteers Israel Tour A US charity, evangelical Christian group FriendShips, which is building a tent hospital in the Gaza Strip is making Palestinians uneasy by offering foreign medical volunteers the opportunity of weekend tourism in Israel, just across the fence east of Gaza.
On International Day of Persons with Disabilities: 2.1% of Total Population in Palestine is Disabled Persons with disabilities in Palestine constitute 2.1 percent of the total population; forty-eight per #cent in the West Bank and fifty-two percent in Gaza Strip, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics.
Israeli Electricity Company to Increase Blackouts on Palestinians to Three Hours The Israeli Electricity Company is going to increase power cut to Palestinians getting their power supply from the Palestinian power distributing company, the Jerusalem District Electricity Company, to three hours, instead of the current two hours, starting next months.
Christmas to Be Celebrated This Year in Bethlehem With Arrival of a Relic of Christ’s Crib The relic, kept at Santa Maria Maggiore church in Rome, was a gift to the Custody of the Holy Land from Pope Francis after President Mahmoud Abbas requested Pope Francis to return the relic to its original place, Bethlehem, where Christ was born.