[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.]
The Occupation Forces
For the Third Day in a Row, Israeli Military Infiltrates Gaza Borders, Raze Land For the third day in a row, Israeli military vehicles infiltrated the Gaza Strip borders and razed land, reported WAFA correspondent. Several army vehicles breached the northern Gaza borders east of Gaza City, went in dozens of meters into agricultural land east of Zaytoun neighborhood to the southeast of Gaza City, razed land, and built dirt mounds while shooting in the air, he said.
Israel to Hand Over Body of Deceased Palestinian Detainee Israeli occupation authorities are due to hand over the body of deceased Palestinian detainee Nour Barghouti to his family late on Sunday evening, said the Palestinian Authority's Detainees Affairs Commission today. Barghouti, twenty-three, from Aboud village near Ramallah, died on Wednesday after he fell unconscious in the bathroom in the Naqab prison in the south of Israel and was denied emergency medical assistance that could have saved his life.
Israeli Police Prevent Ramadan Musaharati From Doing His Job in East Jerusalem Neighborhoods Israeli police prevented this morning the Ramadan musaharati, the person who wakes people up before dawn to eat in order to start the day-long fast, from doing his traditional job and threatened to arrest him, according to witnesses.
Israel Army Confirms Drone Crash in Gaza An Israeli military Skylark drone crashed east of the city of Deir al-Balah, in the south of the Gaza Strip. Haaretz reported that there was no concern over the potential leak of sensitive information. Arabi21 said Israel’s i24 news website reported an army spokesman saying that the drone crashed “or was downed” in Gaza.
Israel Bans Use of Tracking App Used to Quarantine Coronavirus Patients Israel’s use of phone tracking technology to track patients infected with the coronavirus has been banned following privacy concerns, according to the BBC. The decision not to advance the bill means that the police had to discontinue the practice as of Wednesday evening.
Israel Threatens to Stop Cooperation with PA Regarding Fight Against COVID-19 On Thursday, Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon threatened to stop his country’s cooperation with the Palestinian Authority regarding the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. This was in response to Palestinian representative Riyad Mansour’s accusation that Israel is exacerbating the virus’s effects.
Israel Labor to Join Government With Two Ministries On Friday leader of Israeli Blue and White Party Benny Gantz and Labor Chief Amir Peretz signed a coalition deal where Labor is to staff the welfare and economy ministries, as well as receive seats on the security cabinet and ministerial committee for legislation. Participation of the Labor Party in the Israeli government is the first time since 2013. However, the Labor member Merav Michaeli refused to join the coalition, saying it was the party’s “final suicide.”
Reports: Israel to Appoint Arab Minister For Minorities in Next Cabinet The upcoming Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will include an Arab minister for minority affairs as part of the Blue and White party’s ministerial portfolios, local media reports claimed. This strategy seems to be used as a way to normalize relations with Israel’s Palestinian population and separate them from the pro-Palestinian Joint List Party.
Israel Freezes Palestinian Authority Tax Revenue Again A court in Jerusalem decided on Sunday to freeze 128 million dollars of Palestinian Authority tax revenue collected by Israeli customs after The Israel Law Center - Shurat HaDin filed a suit. Palestinian Authority Minister of Civil Affairs Hussein l-Sheikh described this as “theft and piracy.”
PFLP Criticizes Abbas For Blocking Budget Payment The Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine has criticized Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for stopping the Palestine Liberation Organization’s National Fund from making a budget payment to the organization.
Sri Lankan Christians Urge Netanyahu to Treat Palestinians With Dignity Amid Pandemic A group of Sri Lankan Christians Thursday addressed a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu urging him to treat the Palestinian people with dignity and justice amid the novel coronavirus crisis.
Turkey to Send Medical, Financial Aid to Palestine Turkey has accepted Palestine’s call for medical and financial assistance in the fight against the novel coronavirus, according to an official statement Thursday, Anadolu reports. Turkey announced an aid package for Palestine during an extraordinary meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said in a statement.
PLO Calls For Collective International Action Against Israel’s Intended Annexation Plan The Palestine Liberation Organization on 27 April made a call for collective international action against Israeli plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank.
Palestinians in Europe Call for End of Internal Division About one thousand Palestinians in Europe have called on Palestinian factions to end the internal division in light of the outbreak of the coronavirus. They called for all parties to stick to Palestinian unity, condemning disunity, adopting dialogue to sort out differences, resuming talks, reactivating Palestine Liberation Organization’s institutions, and stressing the importance of action by Palestinians in the diaspora.
Urgent Arab League Meeting to Discuss Israel Plan to Annex West Bank The Arab League will on Thursday hold an urgent virtual meeting to discuss Israeli plans to annex illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank, Wafa News Agency reported yesterday. Assistant Secretary General of the Arab League, Hossam Zaki, said that the meeting will discuss various ways of providing political, legal and financial support to the Palestinian leadership to confront the Israeli plans.
Settlers and Illegal Settlements
Israeli Settler Opens Fire Near An Anti-corona Palestinian Post in Near Bethlehem An Israeli settler opened fire in the air today as he approached in his car a post Palestinian volunteers had set up in the south of the West Bank as part of efforts to fight the spread of coronavirus pandemic, according to local sources.
Adalah: Israeli Government Coalition Agreement Stipulates Illegal Annexation of West Bank The coalition agreement signed this week between Netanyahu and Gantz includes a stipulation to impose Israeli sovereignty over parts of occupied West Bank that is patently illegal.
Settlers Chop Off Olive Trees in Nablus-district Town Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settlement construction in the northern West Bank, confirmed that a group of settlers from the nearby Israeli colonial settlement of Rechelim chopped off thirty-three olive trees belonging to Hamad Saleh Jazi, a local Palestinian farmer.
US to Recognize Annexation of Occupied West Bank, Jordan Valley The United States said it was ready to recognize Israel's annexation of much of the occupied West Bank but asked the new unity government also to negotiate with the Palestinians. The step would be "in the context of the Government of Israel agreeing to negotiate with the Palestinians along the lines set forth in President Trump's Vision," said a US Department of State spokesperson.
Israeli Military Razes Palestinian Land in North of West Bank for Settlement Expansion The Israeli military razed today Palestinian land in the northern West Bank village of Burin located near an illegal Israeli settlement, according to Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian official monitoring Israeli settlement activity in the north of the West Bank.
Boycott, Divest, and Sanction Movement
Boycotting Israeli Dates is Working And We Need to Keep Going According to Economic Research Service data provided by the US Department of Agriculture, Israel's exports of dates to the United States have dropped significantly since 2015. Whereas 23.6 million pounds of Israeli dates entered the United States in 2015-2016, only seven million pounds did in 2017-2018.
German Censorship Campaign Targets Scholar Over BDS and Applies ‘antisemitism’ Charge In May last year, the German Bundestag passed a resolution condemning BDS as “anti-Semitic,” flatly conflating “Israel” with “Jews,” thus associating BDS with the Nazi boycott of Jews. Distinguished professor Achille Mbembe, born in Cameroon and based in South Africa, has been targeted by German lawmakers and accused of antisemitism for his comparison of Israeli apartheid with South Africa.
UN Agency in Jordan Dumps G4S Over Human Rights Abuses The United Nations Development Programme office in Jordan will not renew its contract with the British firm, according to Jordan BDS, a group that supports the boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement. Now, all six United Nations agencies in Jordan have now canceled their contracts with G4S, a private security corporation with a lengthy history of involvement in Israel’s crimes.
Palestine Solidarity Campaign Defeats UK Government in Supreme Court Over Ethical Pensions Divestment Palestine Solidarity Campaign has won a landmark case in the Supreme Court after challenging UK Government regulations which restrict Local Government Pension Schemes from divesting contrary to UK foreign and defense policy, thereby limiting the possibility of divestment from Israel’s human rights violations.
Palestine to Sue Israel at International Courts in the Event of Annexation: Al-Maliki Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, Riyad al-Maliki, said today that the State of Palestine is going to prosecute Israel at international courts in the event it goes ahead with its plan to annex parts of the occupied West Bank. Al-Maliki said during a meeting with the European Union's Representative to Palestine, Sven Cohan von Burgsdorf, that the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's recent statement–in which he said that it was Israel's decision whether to annex parts of the occupied West Bank–was a proof of the United States' "complicity" in this Israeli colonial expansionist project.
Facebook Says Israeli Spyware Company Ran Vast Hacking Operation in the United States In 2019, nearly 1400 WhatsApp users were hacked with a number of human rights advocates and journalists targeted. The attack was allegedly the work the NSO Group, an Israeli spyware company. Facebook sued NSO in response, which has thus far shown that the spyware company had servers in the United Space, which it used for this hacking operation.
Israel Judge: Coalition Government is ‘terrifying’ And ‘disrespectful’ of Basic Law The former Vice-President of the Supreme Court of Israel Judge Elyakim Rubinstein described the coalition government agreement concluded earlier this week between the Likud Party led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition Blue and White Party Leader Benny Gantz, as “terrifying” and “disrespectful” of basic law.
Israel: Court Rules PA Must Pay $150 Million in ‘terror’ Reparations A court in Israel has ruled that the Palestinian Authority must pay almost 150 million dollars in damages to the families of people killed in “terror attacks.” The Israeli authorities have been given until next month by the court to appeal for the ruling to be annulled, which they may consider as an attempt to keep the Palestinian Authority struggling, but afloat.
Environment, Economy, and Other
Are YouTube’s Policies Biased Against Palestinians? 7amleh – The Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media released a new research about YouTube’s violations of Palestinian digital rights. YouTube is the most important and popular platform for sharing video content, and the second most popular platform in Palestine. Dr. Amal Nazzal, the researcher stated, “This research is a call to encourage collaboration and mobilization at the international, and in particular the Palestinian, levels to show how YouTube violates Palestinian rights and to resist it.”
Gaza Artists Decorate Masks to Raise Coronavirus Awareness In the densely populated Gaza Strip, a widespread outbreak of coronavirus would be devastating. Despite health officials there not requiring face coverings, artists Durgham Qreiqi and Tamer al-Deeb have been painting masks in order to encourage people to take proactive steps to prevent an outbreak.
A $63mln Grant For a New Program For Advancing Sustainability in Palestinian Energy Sector The World Bank approved a fourteen million dollars grant as part of a multiphase program to improve operational and financial performance of the Palestinian electricity institutions and diversification of energy sources.