(Edited file photo)
Palestinians lost 92% of their historical lands
RAMALLAH, (PIC)– The Palestinian Land Research Center said that Palestinians have lost 92% of their land since the British occupation in 1917.
Land Research Center (LRD) has issued on Sunday during a press conference in Ramallah its annual report on Israeli violations of Palestinian rights for 2012.
Jamal al-Omla, the director of the center, stated that 2012 had witnessed an Israeli escalation in settlement construction and expansion at the expense of Palestinian lands and houses.
During the conference, al-Omla confirmed through maps and charts that Palestinian controlled area has decreased to reach 8% of the whole Palestinian historical territories (27,000 km 2) since the British colonization through successive Israeli governments till now.
During 2012, the Israeli authorities have demolished 189 houses and 415 facilities. Almost 1215 Palestinians were displaced as a result, the report noted.
In addition, 772 houses and 590 facilities are threatened with demolition while 27,710 dunums were confiscated.
The report confirmed that 64 thousand trees including 52,122 olive trees were damaged.
By the end of 2012, 240 Israeli barriers were reported including 46 checkpoints established during 2012 in addition to establishing more than 14 new roads to link between Israeli settlements.
The Land Research Center affirmed that 86 mosques and 24 churches were attacked by Israeli settlers during 2012.
The center’s director called for prosecuting the Israeli occupation for its human rights violations and called for exposing the Israeli practices against Palestinian legitimate rights.
Israeli settlers and soldiers storm al-Aqsa mosque, arrests one of its guards
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Israeli soldiers arrested on Monday morning Samer Qweider, one of al-Aqsa Mosque guards while trying to stop extremist settlers performing their Talmudic rituals in the mosque under Israeli forces protection.
Al-Aqsa Foundation for Endowment and Heritage confirmed in a statement issued this morning that a group of Jewish settlers raided Al-Aqsa Mosque early this morning under the protection of Israeli police. The settlers entered into the mosque performing their Talmudic rituals and headed towards the Dome of the Rock.
The mosque guards, including Qweider, intervened to stop the settlers from holding rituals and asked the police to take them out of the mosque yards. Yet, the police arrested the guard instead and took him to a nearby police station, according to the Foundation statement.
The Foundation added that following Qweider’s arrest, another group of settlers stormed the mosque and performed their rituals in the Marwani Mosque towards the Dome of the Rock
Palestinian worshipers and students protested against the repeated and escalated settlers’ raids into the Mosque that aim to divide it between Muslims and Jews.
Locals: Settlers torch wheat fields in Yatta
HEBRON (Ma’an) — Settlers on Tuesday set fire to wheat fields in a village east of Yatta, locals said.
The blaze destroyed 5,000 square meters of crops, director of Hebron’s fire service Amjad Uweiwi said, before crews managed to extinguish the fire.
Ibrahim Abdul-Hamid, one of the landowners, told Ma’an that settlers started the fire.
“What happened today is an episode in a sequence of attacks targeting our farmers, especially in the fields adjacent to Route 60,” he said.
The Mayor of Yatta Mousa Makahmira condemned the attack.
Israeli schemes to demolish 450 houses in Jerusalem
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Islamic-Christian Commission for the support of Jerusalem and holy sites warned on Tuesday of Israeli schemes to demolish 450 houses in east Jerusalem.
The Commission noted in a statement, that the Israeli authorities demolished more than 25 thousand homes in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.
It reported that 40 houses were demolished in occupied Jerusalem since the beginning of 2013. Almost 300 Palestinians including 200 children were made homeless as a result.
The Israeli decision to demolish 450 houses in occupied Jerusalem reinforces the Israeli systematic scheme to Judaize the holy city and deport its native people and blur its Arab and Islamic character in order to make it the “eternal” capital of the Jewish people, the commission said.
The commission Secretary-General, Dr. Hanna Issa, said that the Israeli demolition policy is a collective punishment that violates the human rights laws.
The Israeli demolition policy appeared since 1967 under various pretexts including security reasons, being built without permits or near Israeli settlements, and violating Israel’s housing policy, he explained.
He pointed out that Israel uses British emergency law of 1945 to demolish Palestinian houses, despite the fact that this law ended with the end of the British Mandate of Palestine.
IOA decides to demolish 18 houses in Negev
NAZARETH, (PIC)– Israeli police and border guards stormed on Sunday Atir village in Negev, in southern 1948-occupied Palestinian territories and pasted demolition orders on the walls of 18 Palestinian houses and a tent set up protesting against demolition orders.
Palestinian activists have rebuilt on Saturday 18 houses demolished by Israeli bulldozers a week ago under the pretext of being built without permits. However, the occupation authorities issued demolition orders against the 18 houses just one day after their reconstruction.
The Arab Knesset member Taleb Abu Arar said that the Israeli decision to demolish the 18 houses came in light of the Israeli policy to deport the Arab population from the unrecognized Arab villages in southern 1948-occupied Palestinian territories.
Abu Arar called on 1948-Palestinians to participate widely in the demonstration outside the Israeli Knesset against Prafr Begin scheme which aims to displace thousands of Palestinian citizens, to confiscate 860 thousand acres of Arab land, and to demolish tens of thousands of homes in the unrecognized villages.