100-year-old Bedouin woman left homeless as Israel continues Negev demolitions

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The Wadi al-Naam village was established in the 1950s soon after the 1948 European Zionist offensive that established the state of Israel on top of the Palestinians. Military officials forcibly transferred the Negev Bedouins to the site during the 17-year period when Palestinians inside Israel were governed under Israeli military law, which ended shortly before Israel’s military takeover of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in 1967.

NEGEV (Ma’an) — In the latest instance of Israel’s demolition campaign in the Negev region of southern Israel, homes were demolished in two unrecognized Bedouin villages on Wednesday, while Israeli police surrounded the village of Umm al-Hiran.

Israeli bulldozers, escorted by Israeli police, demolished a house in the village of Wadi al-Naam in the western part of the Negev in southern Israel.

Locals told Ma’an that the demolished house was owned by an elderly woman and her daughter. A member of the local committee, Yousif Ziyadin, said that an emergency session would be held to discuss the Israeli demolition.

A relative of the elderly homeowner, Ahmad Zanoun, told Ma’an that 100-year-old Ghaytha Zanoun and her 60-year-old daughter Hilala were living in the house, both of whom suffer from various health issues.

Zanoun said that both Ghaytha and Hilala were unable to walk, and noted that the family had renovated the home in accordance with their doctor’s suggestions due to their health conditions.

He added that Ghaytha and her daughter now were homeless following the demolition.

The Wadi al-Naam village was established in the 1950s soon after the 1948 European Zionist offensive that established the state of Israel on top of the Palestinians. Military officials forcibly transferred the Negev Bedouins to the site during the 17-year period when Palestinians inside Israel were governed under Israeli military law, which ended shortly before Israel’s military takeover of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in 1967.

In July, the Israeli government approved plans to build townships for Israel’s Bedouin community. The planned township is expected to be built just south of Shaqib al-Salam, another Bedouin township, and would transfer at least 7,000 Bedouins from the unrecognized village of Wadi al-Naam, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported last year.

The approved village would comprise of an area of approximately 9,000 dunams (2,224 acres), while providing housing to some 9,000 residents, The Times of Israel also reported.

The proposal to expand the area of Shaqib al-Salam was challenged in Israel’s Supreme Court in 2015, as the Association of Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), who assisted in the court proceedings, argued that any expansion of the town would be followed by the forcible removal of Bedouins from unrecognized villages, particularly from Wadi al-Naam.

Yaron Kelner, spokesperson for ACRI, confirmed to Ma’an on Wednesday that residents of Wadi al-Naam have continued to refuse the relocation deal.

Meanwhile, Israeli bulldozers also demolished a mobile home in the unrecognized village of al-Zarnouq in the Negev. However, no other details were provided about the demolition.

The Israeli government has plans to evacuate thousands of residents from al-Zarnouq to the recognized village of Rahat in order to build over the land for new housing for non-Bedouin Israeli citizens.

According to Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the Israeli government approved in 2011 plans to transfer tens of thousands of Bedouins in unrecognized villages, including al-Zarnouq, into officially recognized settlements.

The ongoing attempts at transferring the Bedouins originated from the Prawer Report, a document outlining expulsion plans for the unrecognized Bedouin community. It was officially adopted by the Israeli government in 2013.

According to Israeli human rights group Adalah, the plan would “result in the destruction of 35 ‘unrecognized’ Arab Bedouin villages, the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel, and the dispossession of their historical lands in the Negev.”

In another incident in the Negev on Wednesday, the Yoav unit of the Israeli police surrounded the village of Umm al-Hiran. According to locals, residents have expressed fear that their presence could signal another demolition, the last of which erupted into deadly violence when Israeli police raided the village prior to demolishing homes. A local Bedouin teacher and an Israeli police officer were killed at the time.

Meanwhile, the Bedouin village of al-Araqib was demolished for the 109th time on Wednesday.

Bedouin communities in the Negev have been the target of a heightened demolition campaign in recent weeks, following Israeli leaders publicly expressing their commitment to demolish Palestinian structures lacking difficult to obtain Israeli-issued building permits across Israel and occupied East Jerusalem in response to the Israeli-court sanctioned evacuation of the illegal Amona settler outpost.

In December, Netanyahu released a video to address settlers of the Amona outpost, assuring them that he would commit to “enforcing laws” on “illegal construction” in Israel, referring primarily to Palestinian communities that are often forced to build without Israeli-issued building permits, due to what rights groups have attributed to discriminatory zoning policies in Israel which have excluded many Palestinian-Israeli communities from being included in the regional and municipal development plans.

According to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), more than half of the approximately 160,000 Negev Bedouins reside in unrecognized villages.

Rights groups have claimed that the demolitions in Bedouin villages is a central Israeli policy aimed at removing the indigenous Palestinian population from the Negev and transferring them to government-zoned townships to make room for the expansion of Jewish Israeli communities.

Israeli aircraft disperse toxic products over district of Palestine AGAIN

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The accusations that Jews have been poisoning wells has been going on for so many centuries that the phrase “poisoning the well” has become an expression in the English language.
The Jews claim that this expression was created by “anti-Semites”, but research the variety of crimes that Jews have been involved with during the past century.

Palestine

Feb. 6, 2017
JENIN (Ma’an) — Israeli planes dispersed toxic products on lands in the northern occupied West Bank district of Jenin, locals told Ma’an.

Residents of the Palestinian villages of Fandaqumiya, Ajja, Zababida, Raba, and Jabaa said that products resembling candy had been dispersed in the area

Palestinian medical sources who tested the products said that the materials were poisonous and had negatively affected wild animals and livestock in the area.

They warned locals, especially children, against touching them.

Spokespersons for Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority and Land Authority were not immediately available for comment on Monday.

Pictures of the pellet-like products seemed to resemble rabies vaccine bait for wild animals, which the Israeli Nature and Parks Authority has reportedly dispersed aerially in the past.

In shift, Trump warns Israel against new settlements

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Shortly before taking office, he vigorously criticized the Obama administration for not vetoing a United Nations Security Council measure condemning settlements.

Trump administration NOW says new or expanded settlements ‘may not be helpful’ in Middle East peace efforts

WASHINGTON (AP) —

Feb 2, 2017

President Donald Trump on Thursday warned Israel that constructing new settlements “may not be helpful” to Middle East peace efforts, striking a tougher line with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s government.
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Trump has been perceived as sympathetic to the settlements, which are considered illegal by most of the international community. Shortly before taking office, he vigorously criticized the Obama administration for not vetoing a United Nations Security Council measure condemning settlements.

But in a statement Thursday, the White House said, “While we don’t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal.”

The White House said the administration “has not taken an official position on settlement activity” and the president would discuss the issue with Netanyahu when he travels to Washington later this month. The two leaders are scheduled to meet at the White House on Feb. 15.

The U.S. statement came hours after Netanyahu vowed to establish the first new West Bank settlement in over two decades “as soon as possible,” promising to make up for the court-ordered demolition of an illegal settler outpost. It was his latest step to expand Israeli settlement construction in the wake of Trump’s inauguration.
Abir Sultan via AP
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Netanyahu repeatedly clashed with President Barack Obama during the Democrat’s eight years in office, and Trump has vowed to be a better partner for Israel. But he’s already appeared to slow his promises to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem — a promise often made by presidential candidates, but never carried out in office because of fears the move would inflame tensions in the region.

Newly sworn-in Secretary of State Rex Tillerson spoke by phone Thursday with Netanyahu.

The prime minister’s vow to establish new West Bank settlements came as Israeli security forces were completing the evacuation of Amona, where they broke into a synagogue to remove dozens of Israeli protesters who had barricaded themselves inside. Netanyahu’s pro-settler government had unsuccessfully tried to block the evacuation of Amona, but Israel’s Supreme Court rejected all appeals after determining the outpost was built illegally two decades ago on private Palestinian land.

Speaking at a ceremony in the West Bank settlement of Ariel, Netanyahu expressed “great pain” over the removal of Amona.

In all, some 400,000 Israelis now live in West Bank settlements, in addition to 200,000 others living in east Jerusalem.

The Palestinians claim both areas, captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war, as parts of a future independent state. The international community has opposed the settlements, built on occupied lands sought by the Palestinians, as obstacles to peace.

Britain and Germany, close Israeli allies, as well as the European Union criticized Netanyahu’s approval this week of 3,000 new settlement homes in the West Bank.

“This spike in settlement activity undermines trust and makes a two-state solution — with an Israel that is safe from terrorism and a Palestinian state that is viable and sovereign — much harder to achieve,” said Britain’s minister for the Middle East, Tobias Ellwood.

Amona is the largest of about 100 unauthorized outposts erected in the West Bank without formal permission but with tacit Israeli government support. It witnessed violent clashes 11 years ago when police demolished nine homes found to have been built on private Palestinian land.

The Supreme Court last year determined that the entire outpost was built illegally and ordered it demolished.

Fake News: The White House will on Monday announce that the US embassy in Israel is to move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem

“According to an report by an Israeli news outlet” More fake news.


Jan. 23rd 2017

PHYLLIS BENNIS INTERVIEW

This is something that has been on the books for 20 years now. No President has been willing to actually make the move.

And every President since that time has, in fact, used that waiver to say, “No. We’re not actually going to move the embassy.” There is no country in the world that has its embassy in Jerusalem. No country in the world recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

 

save the olive trees
and their owners

EU would continue to respect the international consensus that embassies shouldn’t be based in Jerusalem

Image result for netanyahu animated gif

Remember this for the next”terror attack” in Europe

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union foreign ministers on Monday opposed any plan by President-elect Donald Trump to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and warned that it could ratchet up tensions with the Arab world.

“It is very important for us all to refrain from unilateral actions, especially those that can have serious consequences in large sectors of public opinion in large parts of the world,” EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini told reporters after chairing their talks in Brussels.

“We hope that there can be reflection on consequences of any move that is taken,” she said.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, left, talks with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier during an EU foreign ministers meeting at the EU...

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, left, talks with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier during an EU foreign ministers meeting at the EU Council in Brussels on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Trump hasn’t yet outlined a clear policy for the Middle East, but has signaled he will be more sympathetic to Israel’s hard-line right than previous administrations. He has vowed to move the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, part of which the Palestinians want as the capital of their future state.

“We will for sure not move our delegation. That is in Tel Aviv,” Mogherini said.

Irish Foreign Minister Charles Flanagan said he “would be concerned at any unilateral departure from what has been a long held position of the United Nations as far as the siting of embassies is concerned.”

Mogherini said that the EU would continue to respect the international consensus that embassies shouldn’t be based in Jerusalem, which is laid out in U.N. Security Council Resolution 478, dating from 1980.

Germany's Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, left, talks with Finland's Foreign Minister Timo Soini, right, and Sweden's Foreign Minister Margot Walls...

Germany’s Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, left, talks with Finland’s Foreign Minister Timo Soini, right, and Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom during an EU foreign ministers meeting at the EU Council in Brussels on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, right, talks with Ireland's Foreign Minister Charles Flanagan during an EU foreign ministers meeting at the EU Counc...

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, right, talks with Ireland’s Foreign Minister Charles Flanagan during an EU foreign ministers meeting at the EU Council in Brussels on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Palestinians Turn To Vladimir Putin for Help

Rabbi Yosef Tzvi Dushinsky, Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem (1867-1948) “We wish to express our definite opposition to a Jewish state in any part of Palestine.”

13 Jan, 2017

 “The letter asks President Putin to do what he can about the information we have that President-elect Donald Trump will move the embassy to Jerusalem, which for us is a red line and dangerous,” 

The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem has condemned the plans to move the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which were earlier announced by President-elect Donald Trump. The mufti said it would be an “assault” on every Muslim in the world.

“The pledge to move the embassy is not just an assault against Palestinians but against Arabs and Muslims, who will not remain silent,” Muhammad Hussein, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, said during a sermon at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City, AFP reports.

“The transfer of the embassy violates international charters and norms which recognize Jerusalem as an occupied city,” he added. Earlier, Palestinian leaders called for weekly Friday prayers at mosques across the Middle East to protest Trump’s plans to move the US embassy to Jerusalem.

They also stressed that such move could be regarded as recognition of Jerusalem as Israel‘s capital, thus sparking tensions across the Middle East and seriously hampering peace efforts in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Palestinians Jews, Christians and Muslims have never accepted the imported Zionist state.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin to lend assistance in preventing the move. The plea came in a letter that a top Palestinian official, Saeb Erekat, passed on to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Friday.

“The letter asks President Putin to do what he can about the information we have that President-elect Donald Trump will move the embassy to Jerusalem, which for us is a red line and dangerous,” Erekat said after the meeting with Lavrov, as cited by AFP.

Abbas also sent another letter to Trump, calling on him not to move the embassy. The Palestinians also included the issue into the agenda of the meeting of foreign ministers from the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which is due to take place in Malaysia on January 19.

Last Friday, Mohammed Momani, the Jordanian information minister, warned against the relocation of the US embassy in Israel, stressing that it would “inflame the Islamic and Arab streets” and become a “gift to extremists.”

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A view of Jerusalem © Ronen Zvulun

He went on to say that Middle Eastern countries would likely “think about different things and steps they should take in order to stop this from happening” as it “will definitely affect the bilateral relationship between countries in the region, including Jordan, and the parties that will be related to such a decision.”

In the meantime, there have been several signs demonstrating that Trump could be serious about fulfilling this plan. Trump’s senior adviser Kellyanne Conway said in December that the embassy move was “a very big priority” for the president-elect.
Israeli officials, including Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, said they have been contacted about finding an appropriate location for the embassy in the city.

Following the 1967 Six-Day War, East Jerusalem and the West Bank were occupied by the Israelis and this issue still remains one of the key stumbling blocks in the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel has proclaimed the whole of Jerusalem as its capital, while Palestinians regard the eastern part of the city as the capital of their own future state.

The United States and most UN member states, including Russia, which maintains its embassy in Tel Aviv, do not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Erekat said last week that if the embassy is moved, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) will withdraw its recognition of Israel, thus undermining hopes for Arab-Israeli reconciliation.