Press conference opens despite detention of Sheikh Salah
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– The press conference on Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque opened in occupied Jerusalem on Tuesday despite the Israeli detention of Sheikh Ra’ed Salah, leader of the Islamic movement in 1948 occupied Palestine.
The press conference, which was supposed to be addressed by Sheikh Salah, is held to deal with latest developments and threats against Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque.
Sheikh Ekrema Sabri, the head of the higher Islamic authority in Jerusalem, said that the detention of Sheikh Salah was in violation of the freedom of opinion.
He said that freedom of movement and speech should be respected, opining that Sheikh Salah was arrested to block his call for massive marches to the Aqsa Mosque on Wednesday.
For his part, Zahi Nujaidat, the Islamic movement’s spokesman, expressed utter dismay at the detention of Sheikh Salah, charging that the step was an attempt to disrupt pro-Aqsa activities and to terrorize citizens against participation in such activities.
Fuad Al-Khuffash, the director of Ahrar center for human rights, denounced the Israeli act, adding that it was meant to silence any voice defending the Aqsa and exposing Israeli occupation’s practices against it.
Israeli soldiers beat women resisting home demolition
Israeli soldiers used rifle butts to beat five Palestinian women who refused orders to leave their West Bank home ahead of a demolition on Monday, local media reported.
Occupation forces raided a home in the Jericho village of Fasayel early Monday and ordered the 12 residents to collect their things, and get out.
When five of the women refused to budge, troops attacked them with their rifle butts, homeowner Deifallah Rashaydeh told Ma’an news agency.
State news agency Wafa cited local activist Hamza Zbeidat as saying that the forces also fired tear gas and sound grenades at residents who had formed a human chain around the home.
Medics rushed the injured to a hospital for treatment, the reports said.
Bulldozers then demolished the family’s 10-year-old home and a shack that housed cattle.
Jericho governor Majid al-Fityani was quoted by Ma’an as calling the demolition a “slap in the face for those who advocate the resumption of peace negotiations,” during a visit to a hospital where the women were being treated.
Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes and other structures in the occupied West Bank occur almost daily under the pretext of building without a permit in a policy that has drawn widespread condemnation from rights groups.
Roughly 94 percent of Palestinian applications for building permits are rejected, according to the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions.
The group estimates that Israeli authorities have demolished about 27,000 Palestinian structures in the West Bank since 1967.
Israeli court rejects petition to cancel resolution to evacuate 8 villages
AL-KHALIL, (PIC)– An Israeli court in Jerusalem rejected a petition submitted by residents of Msafer Yatta, south of al-Khalil in occupied West Bank, in which they appealed for cancelling the Israeli occupation army’s decision to confiscate, demolish and evacuate 8 villages for military purposes.
Haj Ziad Mkhamra, aged 59, told PIC’s correspondent that the court rejected the petition demanding cancelling the decision of the Defense Minister Ehud Barak to confiscate and evacuate 8 villages in Msafer Yatta.
Mkhamra said the President of the Israeli Supreme Court suggested that the residents choose a retired judge to mediate between them and the prosecutor in an attempt to reach a solution regarding the petition.
He added that the military prosecutor strongly rejected the suggestion of the chief judge and insisted on the implementation of the resolution, claiming that the cancellation of the eviction order means that the forces in the region will have to restart training in another far place which will cost money and time.
The residents stressed on their adherence to their land and their determination to defend it until the decision of the prosecution and the army is cancelled.
The area of Msafer Yatta is inhabited by more than 500 people living on agriculture and grazing sheep. The occupation former Defense Minister Ehud Barak had decided in 2012 to evacuate eight villages to be used for military purposes and training.
IOA expands Bzjat Ze’ev settlement in Jerusalem
OCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– The Israeli Occupation continued its confiscation policy against Palestinian territories where the Israeli bulldozers have begun recently expanding Bzjat Ze’ev settlement, built on Beit Hanina lands in occupied Jerusalem.
Nearly 620 housing units are planned to be added to the settlement.
Settlement expert researcher Ahmed Sab Laban stated that the Israeli authorities started the process of building infrastructure networks in the area including electricity transmission and distribution networks, water and sewage utilities as a prelude to establish 620 new housing units to Bzjat Ze’ev settlement.
The establishment of the new housing units would isolate 50 Palestinian families living in a Jerusalemite neighborhood from Beit Hanina town, he said.
Sab Laban said that the new housing units will be established in high rise residential towers ranging from 9 to 13 storeys, while the Jerusalemite residents are prevented to obtain building permits to establish high rise buildings.
The Israeli occupation authority has surveyed the area to expand Bzjat Ze’evin in order to finish with the building of street no. 20 that will connect the settlement of Pisgat Ze’ev, Prophet Jacob, Anatot, Shuafat and Beit Hanina, Sab Laban stated.
IOF soldiers raze house in JV
JORDAN VALLEY, (PIC)– Israeli occupation forces (IOF) razed a shed and a house in Fasayel Al-Fuqa village in the Jordan Valley on Monday.
Local sources said that IOF soldiers stormed the village and razed the shed then tried to destroy a house but were confronted by citizens.
The sources pointed out that the soldiers used teargas and stun grenades to disperse the protestors then demolished the house, adding that two women were injured in the scuffle.
New Israeli plan to attract thousands of Jewish settlers to Negev and Galilee
NAZARETH, (PIC)– The Israeli government approved a plan at a cost of 10 million shekels to bring about 300,000 Jewish settlers from other occupied areas to live in settlement outposts in Negev and Galilee.
According to the Hebrew radio, the government intends to help Jewish young couples with this project to pay the rents of the apartments they would buy, and to build affordable public housing units.
The Israeli mini-cabinet led by minister of finance Yair Lapid also decided to repair abandoned public buildings in these areas and turn them into cheap houses.
The Israeli Knesset had approved last June the plan submitted in 2011 by Benjamin Netanyahu’s director of planning Ehud Prawer to forcibly evacuate the Palestinian Bedouin villages in the Negev region and gather its population in other areas.
The Palestinians consider this plan as a new chapter of the Palestinian Nakba (catastrophe) because Israel intends to seize more than 800,000 dunums of their land in the Negev.
The Prawer plan would lead to the displacement of 40,000 Negev Bedouins and the destruction of 38 villages and hamlets.