Archive for the ‘Gaza’ Category

Gaza factions warn Israel over Temple Mount ‘aggression’ – Arutz Sheva

The heads of the militant factions in Gaza on Tuesday blasted Israel over the measures it took in the wake of last weeks terror attack at the Temple Mount, saying that its “aggression” on the Al-Aqsa Mosque would be “the spark that ignites the entire region”, i24news reports.

A statement delivered by the factions during a joint press conference said that “we will not allow the cowardly occupation to take control of Al-Aqsa.”

“The occupation must know that violations against Al-Aqsa will cost the occupation more than it can afford. We are continuing preparing for the battle to liberate and cleanse Al-Aqsa Mosque,” they added, according to i24news.

“Aggression on Al-Aqsa Mosque will be the spark that ignites the entire region. We will have the upper hand and the stronger say if the occupation continues with its plans at Al-Aqsa Mosque,” they warned.

The comments follow Israels decision, following Fridays attack in which two Druze police officers were murdered, to place magnetometers (advanced metal detectors which are selective in which metals they react to) and additional security cameras around the entrances to the holy site.

The new security measures prompted an outcry from the Jordanian Waqf and the Jordanian government, which demanded a return to the status quo.

Earlier on Tuesday, Palestinian Authority (PA) leader Rami Hamdallah blasted Israel over the recent goings on in Jerusalem, saying that Israel, as the occupying power, is responsible for the current escalation in Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Read the rest here:
Gaza factions warn Israel over Temple Mount ‘aggression’ – Arutz Sheva

Fair Usage Law

July 19, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Gaza Strip refugee receives prosthetic leg in Detroit – Fox 2 Detroit

(WJBK) – Muath Abudaher is a healthy and happy 16-year-old boy from Palestine.

From throwing the basketball around to visiting the Niagra Falls, he’s enjoying his time in the U.S. as he awaits for his second new prosthetic leg.

“As a young child, he lost him mom when he was 4 to cancer and when he was 6 he got bone cancer and had to have his leg completely removed,” said Yasmeen Hamed, his host mother.

The Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, or PCRF, made it possible for Muath to travel to Michigan for his first prosthetic leg in 2013 and now for his second prosthetic leg in 2017. He outgrew his first one about 5 months ago.

“We’re making it more of an adult leg, adult knee, and hopefully he’ll be able to keep it a little longer as he grows,” Hamedsaid.

Both Yasmeen and Muath hope his story will inspire people to help others who are less fortunate.

“There’s children that in Gaza now that have cancer that can’t leave. Well that’s why our organization is building … our second pediatric cancer center and we’re building it in Gaza for children like Muath. Maybe if there was a facility there we could’ve saved his leg,” Hamed said.

The rest is here:
Gaza Strip refugee receives prosthetic leg in Detroit – Fox 2 Detroit

Fair Usage Law

July 19, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Hamas builds buffer zone in Gaza | TRT World – TRT World

The new buffer zone that is being built along Gaza’s southern border with Egypt will feature surveillance cameras and military posts and will prevent smuggling, a Hamas official said.

Photo by: AP

After the last round of meetings in Cairo, Hamas cleared land on its side of the border, creating a buffer zone with watchtowers, cameras and barbed-wire fences in a concession to security-conscious Egypt.

Gaza’s rulers Hamas said they had begun building a new buffer zone along the southern border with Egypt on Wednesday, as themovement seeks to improve ties with Cairo.

The 100-metre wide “safe area,” stretching 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) along the border between the Palestinian enclave and Egypt, will be equipped with surveillance cameras and military posts, officials said.

“It will be a closed military area and therefore it will be easier to oversee the border and prevent smuggling of drugs and infiltrators,” Deputy Interior Minister Tawfiq Abu Naim told AFP.

TRT World’s Chelsea Carter has more.

Fraught with tension

Hamas have had strained relations with Egypt since the overthrow of Egypt’spresidentMohammed Morsiin 2013.

The current Egyptian government led by former military leader Abdel Fatahal Sisi has closed hundreds of smuggling tunnels along the border and accused Hamas of supporting extremistsinside Egypt, including near the frontier.

Cairo also all but closed off the border between Egypt and Gaza, adding to the isolation of the impoverished territory under blockade by Israel for a decade.

In recent months though, relations between Gaza and Cairo have somewhat thawed.

Recently, Egypt began delivering a million litres (264,200 gallons) of fuel to Gaza, temporarily easing a power crisis that has left the Palestinian enclave’s two million residents with only a few hours of electricity per day.

The deliveries came two days after Israel started to reduce the electricity it supplies to Gaza, following Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to stop paying for it amid a dispute with Hamas.

A delegation of Hamas leaders, led by its Gaza head Yahya Sinwar, also recently met with Egyptian officials in Cairo, discussing the border and security, as well as humanitarian suffering in the strip.

Suicide car bomb hits opposition group’s headquarters in Idlib

Saudi-led air strikes kill at least 20 people in Yemen

Hundreds of suspected Daesh captives face abuses in Iraqi prisons

YPG to hand over bodies of nine FSA fighters to Turkey after clashes

Turkey slams Israel after Muslims attacked at Al Aqsa

Saudi police arrest young woman for wearing skirt

Excerpt from:
Hamas builds buffer zone in Gaza | TRT World – TRT World

Fair Usage Law

July 18, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Gaza in transit: what after the GCC crisis? – Open Democracy

No conflict in the Middle East spares the Palestinians, and the recent crisis in the GCC is no exception.

Border outpost between Gaza and Egypt. Picture by: IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA/Reuters/PA Images. All rights reserved.Following the escalation of the GCC crisis and the deteriorating relationship between Qatar and the Gulf Triad (Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain), along with Egypt, rumors started spreading about a possible deal with the Hamas leadership in Gaza, being orchestrated by Egypt and the UAE. It would seem that the current crisis and its impact on Hamas has been viewed as a golden opportunity to reshape Palestinian politics and possibly curb the Hamas link to the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar.

According to Reuters, there have been talks between Hamas leaders, such as Yahya Sinwar, and Egyptian officials about the future of leadership in Gaza. Hamas has been negotiating the easing of the blockade and securing fuel supplies with Egypt on the condition that Hamas includes Mohammad Dahlan in the Gaza leadership. However, the expected scope of his potential role within the government is not clear.

Reports claim that the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah was initially happy about the recent crisis in the GCC, and the consequent implications it has on Gaza; however, the leadership is now reconsidering its stance as it sees the possible return of Mohammad Dahlan to the scene as a threat to the current status quo in the West Bank. The decision of Mahmoud Abbas to pressure Hamas by cutting the salaries of public servants in Gaza as well as cutting down the electricity supply seems to have backfired with Egypt and Dahlan emerging as the unlikely saviors for Hamas.

These rumors that might have sounded far-fetched a couple of months ago, no longer seem to be unthinkable. The difficult situation Hamas currently finds itself in, makes these claims much more plausible. For one thing, it has been reported that multiple Hamas leaders have left Qatar, and the decision by Ismail Haniyeh to relocate to Qatar has been retracted. Nevertheless, it may be argued that it was in fact Qatar that sought to distance itself from Hamas due to the current GCC crisis. Whether this shift was initiated by Qatar or Hamas, or whether these changes preceded the GCC crisis, or came as a result of it, remain the subject of a larger investigation. However, the end result for Hamas remains that is has been put in a difficult position as it seems to be losing its Qatari ally, while at the same time being put under intense pressure by Israel and the Palestinian Authorities, whose actions seem to be driving Gaza towards a catastrophic reality.

More importantly, the recent meeting that took place between Egyptian Intelligence and Hamas leaders indicates a high possibility that the alleged deals are being made. What makes it even more so is the fact that Hamas has recently decided to increase security on the borders with Egypt in Sinai by putting up a buffer zone; a request that fell on deaf ears when made by Egypt in the past. Egypt, on the other hand, suddenly decided to supply the Gaza strip with much-needed fuel supplies following the decision by Israel, under the pressure of the PA, to cut the electricity supply. Could this be the Hamas leadership and Egypt’s way of showcasing their good intentions and willingness to cooperate on the new vision for the Gaza strip? In light of this, it seems more likely than ever that Hamas will take the hand that was extended to it by Al-Sisis government, and Dahlan, even if both parties may be highly disliked by the movement.

Seeing as this deal could be a real possibility, what are the possible implications on the future of the Palestinian State and the unity of the Palestinian leadership and people?

For one thing, it seems that the PA has been completely sidelined in these negotiations. It is no secret that Dahlan, who aspires to be the successor of Abbas, has fallen out of favor with the PA in 2011 and has been described as the archenemy of Abbas. With the PA constantly cracking down on the supporters of Dahlan, it has become increasingly clear that a return to the PA is unlikely for him. In turn, it is entirely possible that the future of Gaza is one that distances itself from the West Bank rather than seeks a form of unity. In fact, isnt it possible that the negotiations with Egypt could lead to the complete separation of Gaza from the West bank? As Egypt starts to supply the Strip with its needs and opens the Egyptian-controlled Rafah crossing with Gaza, what will be the possible scope of cooperation between the West Bank and Gaza?

With a lot of speculations going around, there is not much room for certainty. It may be clear, however, that with the Dahlan-Hamas alliance in Gaza, and Abbas Fatah in the West Bank, it seems less likely than ever for the two parties to achieve a unified government let alone be able to negotiate the establishment of a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders. As such, what seems to be the only move currently available for Hamas is one that further divides the Palestinians and further compromises the relationship between the two territories.

If this plan is to actualize, it is also difficult to see the relationship that might bring together Hamas and Dahlan. The latter has been viewed by many as a corrupt figure in Palestinian politics, and a strong supporter of American and Israeli interests. It is also difficult to ignore the past animosity that existed between the two sides, which intensified during the violent clashes of 2007. Is it possible for the two sides to find a middle ground or is this alliance meant to be short-lived?

At the end, the question that presents itself is whether this move will set the Palestinians and their aspirations for an independent Palestinian state on another trajectory, which will be difficult to escape. If the Palestinian front is divided and the negotiation process is further halted, how will this impact the expanding settlement building projects of Israel in the West Bank and East Jerusalem? If this is a foreseeable future, then will it ever be possible for the Palestinians to reverse the damage created by this rift within its ranks? Or is the future of the Palestinians one that sees Gaza returning to Egypt and the West Bank annexed by Israel? If anything, one thing is clear: Israel will continue to be the biggest beneficiary from the internal Palestinian dispute.

Read the rest here:
Gaza in transit: what after the GCC crisis? – Open Democracy

Fair Usage Law

July 17, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Middle East Quartet, in first Trump-era statement, expresses concerns about Gaza – The Jewish Standard

WASHINGTON (JTA) The first meeting of the coordinating body that oversees Middle East peace since President Donald Trump took office expressed its concerns over the worsening humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip.

The Middle East Quartet, which represents the United States, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union, met Thursday in Jerusalem to discuss current efforts to advance peace in the region.

The envoys expressed serious concern over the worsening humanitarian situation in Gaza and discussed efforts to resolve the crisis, a statement said.

The West Bank Palestinian Authority hasrecentlysharply reduced electricity to Gaza with Israels cooperation. The electricity cuts are part of a power play by the Palestinian Authority against Hamas, its rival Palestinian faction that governs the territory. The dispute has left the Gaza Strips nearly 2 million Palestinian residents dangerously vulnerable to a heat wave.

Notably, the statement was shared in a tweet by Jason Greenblatt, Trumps lead Middle East peace negotiator.

Important #Quartet mtg today on how to best facilitate peace btw Israelis and Palestinians and improve dire situation in Gaza, Greenblatt said.

Greenblatts endorsement of the meeting and its concerns about Gaza and the fact that the meeting took place at all showed again that Trump is hewing to diplomatic norms when it comes to Israel and maintaining international alliances that he has diminished in other spheres.

Continue reading here:
Middle East Quartet, in first Trump-era statement, expresses concerns about Gaza – The Jewish Standard

Fair Usage Law

July 16, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

INTO THE FRAY A Port in Gaza: Preposterous & Perilous Proposal – The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com

Photo Credit: Flickr

Israels intelligence and transport minister has long pushed the idea of an artificial island off the coast of the Gaza Strip, with plans for a port, cargo terminal and even an airport to boost the territorys economy and connect it to the world. A New Island in the Mediterranean Just Off Gaza Reuters June 29, 2017.

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and Im not sure about the former.

Attributed to Albert Einstein.

A little over a year ago, I wrote a column harshly criticizing the proposal for the construction of a port of any sort for Gaza, particularly one to be located on a detachable artificial island, to be built 3-4 km off the Gazan coast. What I wrote then is just as pertinent today.

Harebrained and hazardous

The opening paragraph of the column was this: Just when you thought that you could not possibly hear anything more preposterous on how to help resolve the conflict with the Palestinian-Arabs, somehow someone always manages to prove you wrongand comes out with a policy proposal so glaringly absurd that it transcends what you mistakenly believed was the pinnacle of imbecility. I continued: Disturbingly, precisely such a hopelessly hare-brained scheme is now being repeatedly bandied about by Israelis in positions of influence. Sadly these caustic remarks are still as relevant todayas unbelievable as that may seem.

For as harebrained, hazardousindeed, hallucinatorythe idea is, it remains stubbornly on the agenda, refusing to fade into the distant realms of fantasy, where it clearly deserved to disappear.

Thus, in recent months Israel Katz, who holds the transport and intelligence portfolios, has been raising it incessantly and insistently, reportedly winning significant support from some of his fellow ministers, with only the opposition of Defense Minister Liberman, preventing a government decision to proceed with this preposterous and perilous plan.

Indeed, towards the end of last month, Reuters reported that Israels intelligence and transport ministerIsrael Katz, has released a slick, high-production video setting out his proposal in more detail, complete with a dramatic, English-speaking narration, colorful graphics and stirring music.

Puzzling conundrums

The grandiose vision would include the construction of vast infrastructure facilities, including cargo and passenger ports, a marina, gas and electricity terminals, a desalination plant and, potentially, a future airport.

Of course, this leaves one to struggle with the trenchant question why it would be more feasible to build these ambitious installations on a detachable, multi-billion dollar, floating island rather than on dryland, just a few kilometers away, and where, despite decades of massive international aid, nothing even remotely similar has ever emerged.

Perhaps even more perplexing is the rationale given for the project. According to the previously mentioned promotional video, providing a port to Gaza will help Israel deal with the negative international perception that Gazas current unenviable condition is due to the fact that it is under siege by Israel: Today, Israel continues to be perceived as being responsible for the Gaza Strip and is to a large extent the only lifeline to it, even though it withdrew from the strip over a decade ago. The narrator suggests that Construction of an artificial island with a port and civilian infrastructure installations off the coast of Gaza will provide the Palestinians a humanitarian, economic and transportation gate to the world adding reassuringly without endangering Israels security.

So, to put worried minds in Israel at rest, the video stipulates: in order to ensure that security threats are addressed, Israel will remain in control of security in the sea around the island and of security inspection in the port.

Even more puzzling

So heres the kicker: If Israel is to maintain its power to police what goes in and out of the port, and inspect what goes on inside it, how does that in anyway diminish its status as effectively controlling the fate of Gaza? And why would its control over the flow of goods into Gaza via a seaport be any less onerous than its control over that flow through the existing land routes into Gaza?

But thats not all. For then comes the following staggering suggestion: An international policing force will be responsible for security and public order for the island and for a checkpoint on the bridge which will connect the island to the coast.

An international policing force? Really? Gee, what a god idea! Especially since that idea has failed so spectacularly in Bosnia and Somalia and Lebanon and Rwanda and .

And are the port proponents seriously advocating that some international force will adequately man and manage a checkpoint on the narrow bridge between the Gaza mainland and the island, when it is precisely the IDFs maintenance of such land-based checkpoints that has brought international condemnation of unjustified humiliation of the Palestinians.

Even more to the point, do they really believeespecially given past precedentsthat after a single suicide attack by Islamist extremist, the international policing force will have the resolve and commitment to persist with its mission and not vacate the islandleaving Israel with the thorny dilemma of ether abandoning the island, port and all, to the Hamas (or some more radical successor) or taking over the island itself, negating the very rationale for its construction in the first place!!!

Reinforcing the rationale for terror

Moreover, the very rationale for the port is damaging, playing directly into the hands of Israels detractors.

After all, to suggest that by alleviating economic hardship in Gaza, Israel could diminish the motivation for terror is, in effect, not only inverting the causal relationship between the two, but it also implies that the victims of terror are to blame for their attackers aggression. Little could be more counterproductiveand misleadingfor Israel.

Indeed, the dire situation in Gaza is not the cause of the terror that emanates from it.

It is the consequence of that terror.

Clearly, the onerous measures that Israel is compelled to undertake to ensure the safety of its citizens is not the reason for, but the result of that terror. Equally if the latter were eliminated, there would be no need for the formerand far more rational solutions than a multi-billion dollar artificial island could be found to facilitate the flow of goods and people to and from Gaza.

This prosperity-prevents-terror thesis is wrong on virtually every level. Firstly, it is risible to believe that Hamas, who has deliberately put its own civilians in harms way, gives a hoot about their economic well-being. After all, if it has scant regard for their lives, why should their livelihood be of greater concern?

Port no panacea for poverty

Sadly then, the case presented for providing Gaza a port strongly reinforces the rationale justifying terror, implying that it is largely economic privation which is the primary cause of the Judeocidal terror emanating from Gaza, and if the residents of that ill-fated strip were afforded greater prosperity, this would operate to stifle the motivation to perpetrate acts of terror.

However, it is far more likely that, if the general economic situation were to improve, Hamas would coercively appropriate much of this new found wealth for its own belligerent needswith prosperity thus making it more potentnot more pacific.

Accordingly, no great analytical acumen should be required to swiftly bring us to the conclusion that a port in Gaza will never be a panacea for the poverty of the populationand that Hamas, and its other terrorist cohorts, are not burrowing tunnels because Gaza has no port. They are burrowing them despite the fact it does not have one.

After all, in effect, Gaza already has a modern port at its disposal, under Israeli supervision, barely 35 km. north of it, far closer to it than many locations in Israel: The port of Ashdod.

Obviously, under conditions of peace (or even credible non-belligerency) Ashdod can supply all Gazas supervised civilian needswithout squandering billions on a fanciful floating island port. However, under conditions of on-going belligerency, even under the strictest Israeli supervision, there is no wayshort of taking control of Gazato ensure that dual purpose material such as cement, fertilizer and steel will not be used for belligerent purposes.

Detachable port detached from reality

The severity of this problemand the futility of a Gaza port as a means of solvingor even alleviatingit, was vividly underscored by a report from last years UN World Humanitarian Summit, which revealed that Hamas had been siphoning off 95% of the cement transferred into the Gaza Strip to rebuild homes, using it instead for military purposes/tunnel construction.

So, even if the island port were to be placed under tight inspection, how could Israel ensure that the building materials that went to construct the labyrinth of tunnels underlying Gaza would be used for more benign purposes? How could it ensure that steel was not being used to fabricate missiles and the means to launch them? Or fertilizers being diverted for the manufacture of explosives?

Furthermore, how is Israeli supervision to be maintained, and the safety of the Israeli personnel togetherwith the international forcesbe ensured in the isolated off-shore port, should theyas is far from implausiblebe set upon by a local bloodthirsty mob?

There are also likely to be unknown environmental consequences, with serious concern being raised as to the detrimental effect such a large off-shore construction would have on Israels beaches to the north, which are likely to be severely eroded as they are deprived of sand deposits carried today by the northbound currents which would be disrupted by the artificial island. Thesealong with numerous other questions clearly underscore how demonstrably detrimental and detached from reality the notion of a detachable port for Gaza really is.

Libermans disturbing ambivalence

Defense Minister Liberman is, of course, to be commended for his rejection of the ill-conceived initiative. However, disturbingly, he is on record not so long ago, supporting ittrue, basically on condition that Hamas would un-Hamas itself.

Thus, in February this year Liberman proposed an initiative for transforming Gaza into the Singapore of the Middle East, which included building a seaport and an airport and by creating an industrial zonethat would help produce 40,000 jobs in the strip, if Hamas agreed to demilitarization and to dismantling the tunnel and rocket systems it has built.

TheHamas responsewas quick to come. It was highly instructive and should have dispelled any illusions as to the efficacy of proposing a port as a means for providing any impetus for peace. Mahmoud al-Zahar, a senior Hamas official, dismissed it derisively: If we wanted to turn Gaza into Singapore, we would have done it ourselves. We do not need favors from anyone.

This tart retort prompted a stark comment from Gatestone scholar, Bassam Tawil :Why did Hamas reject an offer for a seaport, airport and tens of thousands of jobs for Palestinians? Because Hamas does not see its conflict with Israel as an economic issue. The dispute is not about improving the living conditions of Palestinians, as far as Hamas is concerned. Instead, it is about the very existence of Israel.

He added caustically: Hamas deserves credit for one thing: its honesty concerning its intentions to destroy Israel and kill as many Jews as possible. Hamas does not want 40,000 new jobs for the poor unemployed Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. It would rather see these unemployed Palestinians join its ranks and become soldiers in its quest to replace Israel with an Islamic empire.

Only one way to ensure who rules Gazaand who doesnt Clearly then, the grave economic situation that plagues Gaza will not be alleviated by providing it with access to port facilities, which, in principle, it already has.

As noted, Israeli restrictions on the flow of goods are not the cause of Arab enmity, but the consequence thereof. The crippling unemployment, reportedly above 40%, will not be alleviated by transferring Israeli supervision from Ashdod and the Gaza border crossings to an off-shore islet.

There is soaring unemployment because any creative energies that might exist, are not channeled by those who rule Gaza toward productive/constructive goals, but into fomenting violence against the hated Zionist entity. A port will not change those realities.

Indeed, it may well exacerbate them.

The penury of the enclave is not due to lack of resources, but to the preferences and priorities of the brigands who govern it. Accordingly, as past events show, Israel can only determine who governs Gaza and who does not if it governs it itself.

More:
INTO THE FRAY A Port in Gaza: Preposterous & Perilous Proposal – The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

A street called Gaza – The Indian Express

Written by Shaju Philip | Updated: July 16, 2017 1:34 am Gaza has been erased from boards. A villager, Muneer, says they picked Gaza as it means strong in Arabic. (Express Photo by Shaju Philip)

A road had been their long-cherished dream. So when the 15 families who live along the narrow T S Colony road at Thuruthi village in Keralas Kasaragod district pooled in their money to turn the 158-metre-long colony walkway into a concrete road, they decided on a new name for it: Gaza Street.

Little did they realise that their road would catch the attention of intelligence agencies, bring the media to their doors, and earn them the terror tag. For, the name they chose for the road evoked images of farway Gaza, the swathe of territory between Israel and the Mediterranean Sea which is administered by Palestine and is blockaded by Israel and Egypt.

Four-and-a-half-km from Kasaragod town is Thuruthi, a village on an island on the Chandragiri river. Its a village of 150 families, all Muslims and a majority of them traditional voters of the Indian Union Muslim League, a major constituent of the Congress-led United Democratic Front. It has no bus service or post-office. The only government institution is a creche run by the state Social Welfare Department.

The local masjid runs a primary school, aided by the government. The road in question lies here, starting at a point opposite the masjid and ending at a house on the banks of the Chandragiri. Of the 15 families who live along this road mostly daily workers, traders and small businessmen five of them trace their lineage to Thuruthi Seethi, a well-known family in these parts. Hence, the walkway was known as T S Colony Road.

During the monsoons, the narrow path would get flooded. We had to wade through water to reach our houses. We had been planning to build a concrete road, over which a car or a mini-truck could go. All the families here finally decided to widen the walkway into a small road, says T S Sainudeen, who runs a small eatery near Kasaragod and lives in a house along this road. Sainudeen says the 15 families raised money and spent Rs 4 lakh to widen the road. They then approached the local councillor, who got Rs 6 lakh sanctioned to get the road concretised.

Local IUML leader Ashfaq Aboobacker says, Though the road work was completed in 2016, it could not be officially inaugurated because the Assembly elections were on and the code of conduct was in place. It kept getting delayed and we decided to club the inauguration of the road with another small bridge in the same locality. The inaugural date was finally fixed for May 26 and a few notices were printed. Some families residing along the road objected to the notices where the road had been called T S Colony Road.

Rasheed Thuruthi, general secretary of Youth League, the IUMLs youth wing, in Kasaragod, who lives in Thuruthi, says: On the eve of the inauguration, some of the families along the new road objected to the road being called T S Colony Road. They argued that they had all contributed money for the road and didnt want it named after one family Thuruthi Seethi. That night, they decided to name it Gaza.

Muneer, a colony resident, says, We toyed with the name Madeena, but later agreed on Gaza, which, in Arabic, means strong. We had no religious or political angle in mind. We were shocked to see media reports that said the village was a breeding ground for terrorists, says Muneer, a construction worker.

Two weeks after the board announcing Gaza Street came up, news reports said the area was under intelligence radar. The reports also mentioned that Padanna village, which is home to a dozen youths who allegedly moved to Afghanistan to join the Islamic State, is close to Gaza Street. In fact, Padanna is 45 km away from Thuruthi. Besides, there were unsubstantiated reports of love jihad in Thuruthi.

Following this, intelligence sleuths visited Thuruthi to ascertain the true story behind Gaza Street. An intelligence source said they didnt suspect any ulterior agenda behind the naming of the road. Though the district has several communally sensitive areas, Thuruthi has always remained peaceful; there hasnt even been a petty crime reported from the island in the recent past. To avoid any further controversy, on the polices direction, the villagers erased the board, says an officer.

The Madrasathul Muhammadiya Aided Lower Primary School, managed by the masjid at Thuruthi, has eight non-Muslim teachers out of 11. Headmistress Usha Kumari, who has been teaching here since 1992, says, The village is very peaceful and people are very cordial. Of the 147 students in the school, 26 are non-Muslims from outside. Sources say it is common for political parties and communities to name places in the district.

We have places with names such as Shivaji Nagar, Kuwait, Tipu Sultan Nagar etc in the district. In fact, we have a place called Gaza at Chemmanad in the district. But nobody ever associated them with terror, says a police officer. Rasheed, the Youth League leader, says the Thuruthi village too has always enthusiastically taken to naming its roads and bridges. We have an Ustad Road, where the house of a Muslim scholar is located. And after India won Kargil War, we named a small bridge after Kargil. But we have never faced a controversy like this one.

For all the latest India News, download Indian Express App

Excerpt from:
A street called Gaza – The Indian Express

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Netanyahu: Two Israelis Who Jumped Border Into Gaza Cruelly Held by Hamas – Haaretz

Israel had never explicitly acknowledged that the two missing Israelis were held by the Gaza group

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in an interview with Channel 20 on Thursday that two Israeli civilians who crossed the border into the Gaza Strip “are being held in a very cruel way by Hamas.”

The two Israelis,Abera Mengistu and Hisham Abu-Sayid, have been missing in Gaza since 2014 and 2015 respectively. Until now, it was assumed that they were being held by Hamas, but Israel had never said so explicitly.

Netanyahu added that “there are ceaseless efforts by me and those involved in this matter to bring back Oron Shaul, Hadar Goldin, and also the citizens Mengistu and Abu-Sayid.” A few hours before the interview, at a memorial ceremony held in Jerusalem for soldiers killed in the 2014 Gaza war, Netanyahu spoke in a similar manner and said that Mengistu and Abu-Sayid “are being held in the Gaza Strip by a cruel enemy.”

The bodies of two Israel Defense Forces soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, who were killed in 2014 during Israels Operation Protective Edge, have also remained in Gaza.

Mengistu, a resident of Ashkelon, crossed the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip in September 2014, near the coast of Zikim. Abu-Sayid, a resident of Hura, did so in April 2015. The families of the two missing persons testified that they both suffer from psychological problems.

We’ve got more newsletters we think you’ll find interesting.

Please try again later.

This email address has already registered for this newsletter.

In June, Palestinian sources told Haaretz that Hamas was in advanced negotiations for a prisoner exchange deal with Israel, mediated by Egyptian intelligence officials and former Fatah chief Muhammad Dahlan. Kan news reported in July that an Israeli delegation was in Cairo dealing with the issue, and Israel confirmed that discussions were being held to reach a prisoner exchange deal.

Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh said earlier this month that the release of Palestinian prisoners was closer than ever. The remarks were interpreted as a hint that the talks were indeed progressing.

Sources close to the families of Palestinian prisoners have told Haaretz that information they have received does indeed indicate advances toward a deal. However, they stressed that the scope of the deal is unknown, because, they claimed, it is unclear what price Israel would be prepared to pay for the civilians that are currently being held and for the soldiers remains.

Human Rights Watch published a report in May calling on Hamas to confirm its detention of the two Israeli citizens, and to reveal details on their condition and release them.

According to Human Rights Watch, Hamas position is that “there are no civilians in Israel” and all “Israelis who enter Gaza are spies.”

Want to enjoy ‘Zen’ reading – with no ads and just the article? Subscribe today

Visit link:
Netanyahu: Two Israelis Who Jumped Border Into Gaza Cruelly Held by Hamas – Haaretz

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

How solar power is helping Gaza residents overcome electricity crisis – The National

Muhammad Dahman stands near the solar energy panels he installed on his roof in Gaza City. Naomi Zeveloff for The National

With two sons at university, a third son in high school, and another daughter coming up through the Gaza school system, Muhammad Dahmans children study day and night, using lights to read and fans to cool off in the heat of Gaza City.

Though Mr Dahman, a 46-year-old journalist, is proud of his children, their study routine was once a source of anxiety. In Gaza, where electricity is at a premium, more homework meant more money. On top of the 200 shekels, (Dh206) he paid per month to connect to Gazas weak power grid, he shelled out at least another 200 shekels per month for a generator, just to keep the lights on at night.

In April, when the Gaza Strip power plant ran out of fuel following a dispute between Hamas, which rules Gaza, and the Palestinian Authority, which governs the West Bank, MrDahman decided that enough was enough. On a friends advice, he invested in solar energy. In May, he spent about Dh7,350 which he is still paying off on four shiny solar panels on the roof, next to his nephews pigeon coop.

The panels provide the electricity MrDahmans family uses during the day, and also charges the batteries that they use at night. Now, he says, the family has a new life. Not only does he have enough electricity to meet all their needs, his home has become a hangout for cousins wanting to cool off or charge their mobile phones.

Sitting in his fan-cooled living room, MrDahman said it was a relief to no longer depend on the Gaza Strip grid. Today, he believes that solar energy is the way of the future for the territory. The fact that solar energy is better for the environment is of secondary concern to him. I just want light! he said.

Read more: Premature babies and sick children at risk from Gaza’s constant blackouts

Most Gazans cant afford solar energy, but for upper and middle class people in the embattled strip it is becoming an increasingly popular option as the local energy system crumbles. The United Nations Development Programme is also installing solar panels in schools and hospitals in Gaza. Last month, the Israeli government further reduced its energy supply to the territoryat the behest of the Palestinian Authority, which blamed Hamas for failing to repay the energy costs. Now, Gazans are receiving just four hours of electricity every 24 hours.

Not far from Mr Dahmans home on a busy Gaza City thoroughfare, a solar company has put shimmering panels on display on the pavement outside its shop. Inside, Tareq Darwish, the Oceanic Companys 25-year-old accountant, says that sales of the India-made panels, which must pass through Israel to reach Gaza, have almost tripled in the last 10 weeks. From selling 15 panels a month, they are now selling up to 50. With more vendors selling the panels, prices have gone down from 1,000 shekels per panelto 600 or 700 shekelseach.

Its still not cheap Mr Darwish says he cant even afford the product he is selling but he tells customers that solar panels are a safe and environmentally friendly alternative to generators, which can be deadly if misused. In the past, Gazans have died from generator fires and carbon monoxide poisoning from keeping their units indoors.

Business owners in Gaza are also looking to solar energy. In the northern part of Gaza City, the tall metal roof of the Al Nour Gas station is topped by tilted solar panels drinking up the sun. The petrol station is part of a large complex owned by the Abu Qamer family, which also includes a popular 24-hour grocery store known all over the northern Gaza Strip for its large refrigerators full of perishable items such as hummus and labanecheese, and a 12-unit apartment building housing more than 100 members of the family.

Family patriarch Fateh Abu Qamer, now in his 60s, invested US$52,000 (Dh191,000) in 90 solar panels and 30 batteries to power the complex last July. In the past, the two businesses would barely bring in enough money to cover the costs of electricity, he said. But he expects to make back what he spent on the solar panels and batteriesin two years.

Others in the area have taken note and one of Mr Qamers neighbours has already followed suit. Mr Qamer welcomes neighbours who need to charge their mobile phones and even hooked up one neighbours electric-poweredwater supply, he said. In the Gaza heat, the Abu Qamer grocery store is a welcome oasis of cool in the locality.

The most important thing is to keep the services running, Mr Qamer added.

In Gaza today, that is no small feat.

Read more:
How solar power is helping Gaza residents overcome electricity crisis – The National

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Gaza factions warn Israel over Temple Mount ‘aggression’ – Arutz Sheva

The heads of the militant factions in Gaza on Tuesday blasted Israel over the measures it took in the wake of last weeks terror attack at the Temple Mount, saying that its “aggression” on the Al-Aqsa Mosque would be “the spark that ignites the entire region”, i24news reports. A statement delivered by the factions during a joint press conference said that “we will not allow the cowardly occupation to take control of Al-Aqsa.” “The occupation must know that violations against Al-Aqsa will cost the occupation more than it can afford. We are continuing preparing for the battle to liberate and cleanse Al-Aqsa Mosque,” they added, according to i24news. “Aggression on Al-Aqsa Mosque will be the spark that ignites the entire region. We will have the upper hand and the stronger say if the occupation continues with its plans at Al-Aqsa Mosque,” they warned. The comments follow Israels decision, following Fridays attack in which two Druze police officers were murdered, to place magnetometers (advanced metal detectors which are selective in which metals they react to) and additional security cameras around the entrances to the holy site. The new security measures prompted an outcry from the Jordanian Waqf and the Jordanian government, which demanded a return to the status quo. Earlier on Tuesday, Palestinian Authority (PA) leader Rami Hamdallah blasted Israel over the recent goings on in Jerusalem, saying that Israel, as the occupying power, is responsible for the current escalation in Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Fair Usage Law

July 19, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Gaza Strip refugee receives prosthetic leg in Detroit – Fox 2 Detroit

(WJBK) – Muath Abudaher is a healthy and happy 16-year-old boy from Palestine. From throwing the basketball around to visiting the Niagra Falls, he’s enjoying his time in the U.S. as he awaits for his second new prosthetic leg. “As a young child, he lost him mom when he was 4 to cancer and when he was 6 he got bone cancer and had to have his leg completely removed,” said Yasmeen Hamed, his host mother. The Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, or PCRF, made it possible for Muath to travel to Michigan for his first prosthetic leg in 2013 and now for his second prosthetic leg in 2017. He outgrew his first one about 5 months ago. “We’re making it more of an adult leg, adult knee, and hopefully he’ll be able to keep it a little longer as he grows,” Hamedsaid. Both Yasmeen and Muath hope his story will inspire people to help others who are less fortunate. “There’s children that in Gaza now that have cancer that can’t leave. Well that’s why our organization is building … our second pediatric cancer center and we’re building it in Gaza for children like Muath. Maybe if there was a facility there we could’ve saved his leg,” Hamed said.

Fair Usage Law

July 19, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Hamas builds buffer zone in Gaza | TRT World – TRT World

The new buffer zone that is being built along Gaza’s southern border with Egypt will feature surveillance cameras and military posts and will prevent smuggling, a Hamas official said. Photo by: AP After the last round of meetings in Cairo, Hamas cleared land on its side of the border, creating a buffer zone with watchtowers, cameras and barbed-wire fences in a concession to security-conscious Egypt. Gaza’s rulers Hamas said they had begun building a new buffer zone along the southern border with Egypt on Wednesday, as themovement seeks to improve ties with Cairo. The 100-metre wide “safe area,” stretching 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) along the border between the Palestinian enclave and Egypt, will be equipped with surveillance cameras and military posts, officials said. “It will be a closed military area and therefore it will be easier to oversee the border and prevent smuggling of drugs and infiltrators,” Deputy Interior Minister Tawfiq Abu Naim told AFP. TRT World’s Chelsea Carter has more. Fraught with tension Hamas have had strained relations with Egypt since the overthrow of Egypt’spresidentMohammed Morsiin 2013. The current Egyptian government led by former military leader Abdel Fatahal Sisi has closed hundreds of smuggling tunnels along the border and accused Hamas of supporting extremistsinside Egypt, including near the frontier. Cairo also all but closed off the border between Egypt and Gaza, adding to the isolation of the impoverished territory under blockade by Israel for a decade. In recent months though, relations between Gaza and Cairo have somewhat thawed. Recently, Egypt began delivering a million litres (264,200 gallons) of fuel to Gaza, temporarily easing a power crisis that has left the Palestinian enclave’s two million residents with only a few hours of electricity per day. The deliveries came two days after Israel started to reduce the electricity it supplies to Gaza, following Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to stop paying for it amid a dispute with Hamas. A delegation of Hamas leaders, led by its Gaza head Yahya Sinwar, also recently met with Egyptian officials in Cairo, discussing the border and security, as well as humanitarian suffering in the strip. Suicide car bomb hits opposition group’s headquarters in Idlib Saudi-led air strikes kill at least 20 people in Yemen Hundreds of suspected Daesh captives face abuses in Iraqi prisons YPG to hand over bodies of nine FSA fighters to Turkey after clashes Turkey slams Israel after Muslims attacked at Al Aqsa Saudi police arrest young woman for wearing skirt

Fair Usage Law

July 18, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Gaza in transit: what after the GCC crisis? – Open Democracy

No conflict in the Middle East spares the Palestinians, and the recent crisis in the GCC is no exception. Border outpost between Gaza and Egypt. Picture by: IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA/Reuters/PA Images. All rights reserved.Following the escalation of the GCC crisis and the deteriorating relationship between Qatar and the Gulf Triad (Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain), along with Egypt, rumors started spreading about a possible deal with the Hamas leadership in Gaza, being orchestrated by Egypt and the UAE. It would seem that the current crisis and its impact on Hamas has been viewed as a golden opportunity to reshape Palestinian politics and possibly curb the Hamas link to the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar. According to Reuters, there have been talks between Hamas leaders, such as Yahya Sinwar, and Egyptian officials about the future of leadership in Gaza. Hamas has been negotiating the easing of the blockade and securing fuel supplies with Egypt on the condition that Hamas includes Mohammad Dahlan in the Gaza leadership. However, the expected scope of his potential role within the government is not clear. Reports claim that the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah was initially happy about the recent crisis in the GCC, and the consequent implications it has on Gaza; however, the leadership is now reconsidering its stance as it sees the possible return of Mohammad Dahlan to the scene as a threat to the current status quo in the West Bank. The decision of Mahmoud Abbas to pressure Hamas by cutting the salaries of public servants in Gaza as well as cutting down the electricity supply seems to have backfired with Egypt and Dahlan emerging as the unlikely saviors for Hamas. These rumors that might have sounded far-fetched a couple of months ago, no longer seem to be unthinkable. The difficult situation Hamas currently finds itself in, makes these claims much more plausible. For one thing, it has been reported that multiple Hamas leaders have left Qatar, and the decision by Ismail Haniyeh to relocate to Qatar has been retracted. Nevertheless, it may be argued that it was in fact Qatar that sought to distance itself from Hamas due to the current GCC crisis. Whether this shift was initiated by Qatar or Hamas, or whether these changes preceded the GCC crisis, or came as a result of it, remain the subject of a larger investigation. However, the end result for Hamas remains that is has been put in a difficult position as it seems to be losing its Qatari ally, while at the same time being put under intense pressure by Israel and the Palestinian Authorities, whose actions seem to be driving Gaza towards a catastrophic reality. More importantly, the recent meeting that took place between Egyptian Intelligence and Hamas leaders indicates a high possibility that the alleged deals are being made. What makes it even more so is the fact that Hamas has recently decided to increase security on the borders with Egypt in Sinai by putting up a buffer zone; a request that fell on deaf ears when made by Egypt in the past. Egypt, on the other hand, suddenly decided to supply the Gaza strip with much-needed fuel supplies following the decision by Israel, under the pressure of the PA, to cut the electricity supply. Could this be the Hamas leadership and Egypt’s way of showcasing their good intentions and willingness to cooperate on the new vision for the Gaza strip? In light of this, it seems more likely than ever that Hamas will take the hand that was extended to it by Al-Sisis government, and Dahlan, even if both parties may be highly disliked by the movement. Seeing as this deal could be a real possibility, what are the possible implications on the future of the Palestinian State and the unity of the Palestinian leadership and people? For one thing, it seems that the PA has been completely sidelined in these negotiations. It is no secret that Dahlan, who aspires to be the successor of Abbas, has fallen out of favor with the PA in 2011 and has been described as the archenemy of Abbas. With the PA constantly cracking down on the supporters of Dahlan, it has become increasingly clear that a return to the PA is unlikely for him. In turn, it is entirely possible that the future of Gaza is one that distances itself from the West Bank rather than seeks a form of unity. In fact, isnt it possible that the negotiations with Egypt could lead to the complete separation of Gaza from the West bank? As Egypt starts to supply the Strip with its needs and opens the Egyptian-controlled Rafah crossing with Gaza, what will be the possible scope of cooperation between the West Bank and Gaza? With a lot of speculations going around, there is not much room for certainty. It may be clear, however, that with the Dahlan-Hamas alliance in Gaza, and Abbas Fatah in the West Bank, it seems less likely than ever for the two parties to achieve a unified government let alone be able to negotiate the establishment of a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders. As such, what seems to be the only move currently available for Hamas is one that further divides the Palestinians and further compromises the relationship between the two territories. If this plan is to actualize, it is also difficult to see the relationship that might bring together Hamas and Dahlan. The latter has been viewed by many as a corrupt figure in Palestinian politics, and a strong supporter of American and Israeli interests. It is also difficult to ignore the past animosity that existed between the two sides, which intensified during the violent clashes of 2007. Is it possible for the two sides to find a middle ground or is this alliance meant to be short-lived? At the end, the question that presents itself is whether this move will set the Palestinians and their aspirations for an independent Palestinian state on another trajectory, which will be difficult to escape. If the Palestinian front is divided and the negotiation process is further halted, how will this impact the expanding settlement building projects of Israel in the West Bank and East Jerusalem? If this is a foreseeable future, then will it ever be possible for the Palestinians to reverse the damage created by this rift within its ranks? Or is the future of the Palestinians one that sees Gaza returning to Egypt and the West Bank annexed by Israel? If anything, one thing is clear: Israel will continue to be the biggest beneficiary from the internal Palestinian dispute.

Fair Usage Law

July 17, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Middle East Quartet, in first Trump-era statement, expresses concerns about Gaza – The Jewish Standard

WASHINGTON (JTA) The first meeting of the coordinating body that oversees Middle East peace since President Donald Trump took office expressed its concerns over the worsening humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. The Middle East Quartet, which represents the United States, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union, met Thursday in Jerusalem to discuss current efforts to advance peace in the region. The envoys expressed serious concern over the worsening humanitarian situation in Gaza and discussed efforts to resolve the crisis, a statement said. The West Bank Palestinian Authority hasrecentlysharply reduced electricity to Gaza with Israels cooperation. The electricity cuts are part of a power play by the Palestinian Authority against Hamas, its rival Palestinian faction that governs the territory. The dispute has left the Gaza Strips nearly 2 million Palestinian residents dangerously vulnerable to a heat wave. Notably, the statement was shared in a tweet by Jason Greenblatt, Trumps lead Middle East peace negotiator. Important #Quartet mtg today on how to best facilitate peace btw Israelis and Palestinians and improve dire situation in Gaza, Greenblatt said. Greenblatts endorsement of the meeting and its concerns about Gaza and the fact that the meeting took place at all showed again that Trump is hewing to diplomatic norms when it comes to Israel and maintaining international alliances that he has diminished in other spheres.

Fair Usage Law

July 16, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

INTO THE FRAY A Port in Gaza: Preposterous & Perilous Proposal – The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com

Photo Credit: Flickr Israels intelligence and transport minister has long pushed the idea of an artificial island off the coast of the Gaza Strip, with plans for a port, cargo terminal and even an airport to boost the territorys economy and connect it to the world. A New Island in the Mediterranean Just Off Gaza Reuters June 29, 2017. Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and Im not sure about the former. Attributed to Albert Einstein. A little over a year ago, I wrote a column harshly criticizing the proposal for the construction of a port of any sort for Gaza, particularly one to be located on a detachable artificial island, to be built 3-4 km off the Gazan coast. What I wrote then is just as pertinent today. Harebrained and hazardous The opening paragraph of the column was this: Just when you thought that you could not possibly hear anything more preposterous on how to help resolve the conflict with the Palestinian-Arabs, somehow someone always manages to prove you wrongand comes out with a policy proposal so glaringly absurd that it transcends what you mistakenly believed was the pinnacle of imbecility. I continued: Disturbingly, precisely such a hopelessly hare-brained scheme is now being repeatedly bandied about by Israelis in positions of influence. Sadly these caustic remarks are still as relevant todayas unbelievable as that may seem. For as harebrained, hazardousindeed, hallucinatorythe idea is, it remains stubbornly on the agenda, refusing to fade into the distant realms of fantasy, where it clearly deserved to disappear. Thus, in recent months Israel Katz, who holds the transport and intelligence portfolios, has been raising it incessantly and insistently, reportedly winning significant support from some of his fellow ministers, with only the opposition of Defense Minister Liberman, preventing a government decision to proceed with this preposterous and perilous plan. Indeed, towards the end of last month, Reuters reported that Israels intelligence and transport ministerIsrael Katz, has released a slick, high-production video setting out his proposal in more detail, complete with a dramatic, English-speaking narration, colorful graphics and stirring music. Puzzling conundrums The grandiose vision would include the construction of vast infrastructure facilities, including cargo and passenger ports, a marina, gas and electricity terminals, a desalination plant and, potentially, a future airport. Of course, this leaves one to struggle with the trenchant question why it would be more feasible to build these ambitious installations on a detachable, multi-billion dollar, floating island rather than on dryland, just a few kilometers away, and where, despite decades of massive international aid, nothing even remotely similar has ever emerged. Perhaps even more perplexing is the rationale given for the project. According to the previously mentioned promotional video, providing a port to Gaza will help Israel deal with the negative international perception that Gazas current unenviable condition is due to the fact that it is under siege by Israel: Today, Israel continues to be perceived as being responsible for the Gaza Strip and is to a large extent the only lifeline to it, even though it withdrew from the strip over a decade ago. The narrator suggests that Construction of an artificial island with a port and civilian infrastructure installations off the coast of Gaza will provide the Palestinians a humanitarian, economic and transportation gate to the world adding reassuringly without endangering Israels security. So, to put worried minds in Israel at rest, the video stipulates: in order to ensure that security threats are addressed, Israel will remain in control of security in the sea around the island and of security inspection in the port. Even more puzzling So heres the kicker: If Israel is to maintain its power to police what goes in and out of the port, and inspect what goes on inside it, how does that in anyway diminish its status as effectively controlling the fate of Gaza? And why would its control over the flow of goods into Gaza via a seaport be any less onerous than its control over that flow through the existing land routes into Gaza? But thats not all. For then comes the following staggering suggestion: An international policing force will be responsible for security and public order for the island and for a checkpoint on the bridge which will connect the island to the coast. An international policing force? Really? Gee, what a god idea! Especially since that idea has failed so spectacularly in Bosnia and Somalia and Lebanon and Rwanda and . And are the port proponents seriously advocating that some international force will adequately man and manage a checkpoint on the narrow bridge between the Gaza mainland and the island, when it is precisely the IDFs maintenance of such land-based checkpoints that has brought international condemnation of unjustified humiliation of the Palestinians. Even more to the point, do they really believeespecially given past precedentsthat after a single suicide attack by Islamist extremist, the international policing force will have the resolve and commitment to persist with its mission and not vacate the islandleaving Israel with the thorny dilemma of ether abandoning the island, port and all, to the Hamas (or some more radical successor) or taking over the island itself, negating the very rationale for its construction in the first place!!! Reinforcing the rationale for terror Moreover, the very rationale for the port is damaging, playing directly into the hands of Israels detractors. After all, to suggest that by alleviating economic hardship in Gaza, Israel could diminish the motivation for terror is, in effect, not only inverting the causal relationship between the two, but it also implies that the victims of terror are to blame for their attackers aggression. Little could be more counterproductiveand misleadingfor Israel. Indeed, the dire situation in Gaza is not the cause of the terror that emanates from it. It is the consequence of that terror. Clearly, the onerous measures that Israel is compelled to undertake to ensure the safety of its citizens is not the reason for, but the result of that terror. Equally if the latter were eliminated, there would be no need for the formerand far more rational solutions than a multi-billion dollar artificial island could be found to facilitate the flow of goods and people to and from Gaza. This prosperity-prevents-terror thesis is wrong on virtually every level. Firstly, it is risible to believe that Hamas, who has deliberately put its own civilians in harms way, gives a hoot about their economic well-being. After all, if it has scant regard for their lives, why should their livelihood be of greater concern? Port no panacea for poverty Sadly then, the case presented for providing Gaza a port strongly reinforces the rationale justifying terror, implying that it is largely economic privation which is the primary cause of the Judeocidal terror emanating from Gaza, and if the residents of that ill-fated strip were afforded greater prosperity, this would operate to stifle the motivation to perpetrate acts of terror. However, it is far more likely that, if the general economic situation were to improve, Hamas would coercively appropriate much of this new found wealth for its own belligerent needswith prosperity thus making it more potentnot more pacific. Accordingly, no great analytical acumen should be required to swiftly bring us to the conclusion that a port in Gaza will never be a panacea for the poverty of the populationand that Hamas, and its other terrorist cohorts, are not burrowing tunnels because Gaza has no port. They are burrowing them despite the fact it does not have one. After all, in effect, Gaza already has a modern port at its disposal, under Israeli supervision, barely 35 km. north of it, far closer to it than many locations in Israel: The port of Ashdod. Obviously, under conditions of peace (or even credible non-belligerency) Ashdod can supply all Gazas supervised civilian needswithout squandering billions on a fanciful floating island port. However, under conditions of on-going belligerency, even under the strictest Israeli supervision, there is no wayshort of taking control of Gazato ensure that dual purpose material such as cement, fertilizer and steel will not be used for belligerent purposes. Detachable port detached from reality The severity of this problemand the futility of a Gaza port as a means of solvingor even alleviatingit, was vividly underscored by a report from last years UN World Humanitarian Summit, which revealed that Hamas had been siphoning off 95% of the cement transferred into the Gaza Strip to rebuild homes, using it instead for military purposes/tunnel construction. So, even if the island port were to be placed under tight inspection, how could Israel ensure that the building materials that went to construct the labyrinth of tunnels underlying Gaza would be used for more benign purposes? How could it ensure that steel was not being used to fabricate missiles and the means to launch them? Or fertilizers being diverted for the manufacture of explosives? Furthermore, how is Israeli supervision to be maintained, and the safety of the Israeli personnel togetherwith the international forcesbe ensured in the isolated off-shore port, should theyas is far from implausiblebe set upon by a local bloodthirsty mob? There are also likely to be unknown environmental consequences, with serious concern being raised as to the detrimental effect such a large off-shore construction would have on Israels beaches to the north, which are likely to be severely eroded as they are deprived of sand deposits carried today by the northbound currents which would be disrupted by the artificial island. Thesealong with numerous other questions clearly underscore how demonstrably detrimental and detached from reality the notion of a detachable port for Gaza really is. Libermans disturbing ambivalence Defense Minister Liberman is, of course, to be commended for his rejection of the ill-conceived initiative. However, disturbingly, he is on record not so long ago, supporting ittrue, basically on condition that Hamas would un-Hamas itself. Thus, in February this year Liberman proposed an initiative for transforming Gaza into the Singapore of the Middle East, which included building a seaport and an airport and by creating an industrial zonethat would help produce 40,000 jobs in the strip, if Hamas agreed to demilitarization and to dismantling the tunnel and rocket systems it has built. TheHamas responsewas quick to come. It was highly instructive and should have dispelled any illusions as to the efficacy of proposing a port as a means for providing any impetus for peace. Mahmoud al-Zahar, a senior Hamas official, dismissed it derisively: If we wanted to turn Gaza into Singapore, we would have done it ourselves. We do not need favors from anyone. This tart retort prompted a stark comment from Gatestone scholar, Bassam Tawil :Why did Hamas reject an offer for a seaport, airport and tens of thousands of jobs for Palestinians? Because Hamas does not see its conflict with Israel as an economic issue. The dispute is not about improving the living conditions of Palestinians, as far as Hamas is concerned. Instead, it is about the very existence of Israel. He added caustically: Hamas deserves credit for one thing: its honesty concerning its intentions to destroy Israel and kill as many Jews as possible. Hamas does not want 40,000 new jobs for the poor unemployed Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. It would rather see these unemployed Palestinians join its ranks and become soldiers in its quest to replace Israel with an Islamic empire. Only one way to ensure who rules Gazaand who doesnt Clearly then, the grave economic situation that plagues Gaza will not be alleviated by providing it with access to port facilities, which, in principle, it already has. As noted, Israeli restrictions on the flow of goods are not the cause of Arab enmity, but the consequence thereof. The crippling unemployment, reportedly above 40%, will not be alleviated by transferring Israeli supervision from Ashdod and the Gaza border crossings to an off-shore islet. There is soaring unemployment because any creative energies that might exist, are not channeled by those who rule Gaza toward productive/constructive goals, but into fomenting violence against the hated Zionist entity. A port will not change those realities. Indeed, it may well exacerbate them. The penury of the enclave is not due to lack of resources, but to the preferences and priorities of the brigands who govern it. Accordingly, as past events show, Israel can only determine who governs Gaza and who does not if it governs it itself.

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

A street called Gaza – The Indian Express

Written by Shaju Philip | Updated: July 16, 2017 1:34 am Gaza has been erased from boards. A villager, Muneer, says they picked Gaza as it means strong in Arabic. (Express Photo by Shaju Philip) A road had been their long-cherished dream. So when the 15 families who live along the narrow T S Colony road at Thuruthi village in Keralas Kasaragod district pooled in their money to turn the 158-metre-long colony walkway into a concrete road, they decided on a new name for it: Gaza Street. Little did they realise that their road would catch the attention of intelligence agencies, bring the media to their doors, and earn them the terror tag. For, the name they chose for the road evoked images of farway Gaza, the swathe of territory between Israel and the Mediterranean Sea which is administered by Palestine and is blockaded by Israel and Egypt. Four-and-a-half-km from Kasaragod town is Thuruthi, a village on an island on the Chandragiri river. Its a village of 150 families, all Muslims and a majority of them traditional voters of the Indian Union Muslim League, a major constituent of the Congress-led United Democratic Front. It has no bus service or post-office. The only government institution is a creche run by the state Social Welfare Department. The local masjid runs a primary school, aided by the government. The road in question lies here, starting at a point opposite the masjid and ending at a house on the banks of the Chandragiri. Of the 15 families who live along this road mostly daily workers, traders and small businessmen five of them trace their lineage to Thuruthi Seethi, a well-known family in these parts. Hence, the walkway was known as T S Colony Road. During the monsoons, the narrow path would get flooded. We had to wade through water to reach our houses. We had been planning to build a concrete road, over which a car or a mini-truck could go. All the families here finally decided to widen the walkway into a small road, says T S Sainudeen, who runs a small eatery near Kasaragod and lives in a house along this road. Sainudeen says the 15 families raised money and spent Rs 4 lakh to widen the road. They then approached the local councillor, who got Rs 6 lakh sanctioned to get the road concretised. Local IUML leader Ashfaq Aboobacker says, Though the road work was completed in 2016, it could not be officially inaugurated because the Assembly elections were on and the code of conduct was in place. It kept getting delayed and we decided to club the inauguration of the road with another small bridge in the same locality. The inaugural date was finally fixed for May 26 and a few notices were printed. Some families residing along the road objected to the notices where the road had been called T S Colony Road. Rasheed Thuruthi, general secretary of Youth League, the IUMLs youth wing, in Kasaragod, who lives in Thuruthi, says: On the eve of the inauguration, some of the families along the new road objected to the road being called T S Colony Road. They argued that they had all contributed money for the road and didnt want it named after one family Thuruthi Seethi. That night, they decided to name it Gaza. Muneer, a colony resident, says, We toyed with the name Madeena, but later agreed on Gaza, which, in Arabic, means strong. We had no religious or political angle in mind. We were shocked to see media reports that said the village was a breeding ground for terrorists, says Muneer, a construction worker. Two weeks after the board announcing Gaza Street came up, news reports said the area was under intelligence radar. The reports also mentioned that Padanna village, which is home to a dozen youths who allegedly moved to Afghanistan to join the Islamic State, is close to Gaza Street. In fact, Padanna is 45 km away from Thuruthi. Besides, there were unsubstantiated reports of love jihad in Thuruthi. Following this, intelligence sleuths visited Thuruthi to ascertain the true story behind Gaza Street. An intelligence source said they didnt suspect any ulterior agenda behind the naming of the road. Though the district has several communally sensitive areas, Thuruthi has always remained peaceful; there hasnt even been a petty crime reported from the island in the recent past. To avoid any further controversy, on the polices direction, the villagers erased the board, says an officer. The Madrasathul Muhammadiya Aided Lower Primary School, managed by the masjid at Thuruthi, has eight non-Muslim teachers out of 11. Headmistress Usha Kumari, who has been teaching here since 1992, says, The village is very peaceful and people are very cordial. Of the 147 students in the school, 26 are non-Muslims from outside. Sources say it is common for political parties and communities to name places in the district. We have places with names such as Shivaji Nagar, Kuwait, Tipu Sultan Nagar etc in the district. In fact, we have a place called Gaza at Chemmanad in the district. But nobody ever associated them with terror, says a police officer. Rasheed, the Youth League leader, says the Thuruthi village too has always enthusiastically taken to naming its roads and bridges. We have an Ustad Road, where the house of a Muslim scholar is located. And after India won Kargil War, we named a small bridge after Kargil. But we have never faced a controversy like this one. For all the latest India News, download Indian Express App

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

Netanyahu: Two Israelis Who Jumped Border Into Gaza Cruelly Held by Hamas – Haaretz

Israel had never explicitly acknowledged that the two missing Israelis were held by the Gaza group Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in an interview with Channel 20 on Thursday that two Israeli civilians who crossed the border into the Gaza Strip “are being held in a very cruel way by Hamas.” The two Israelis,Abera Mengistu and Hisham Abu-Sayid, have been missing in Gaza since 2014 and 2015 respectively. Until now, it was assumed that they were being held by Hamas, but Israel had never said so explicitly. Netanyahu added that “there are ceaseless efforts by me and those involved in this matter to bring back Oron Shaul, Hadar Goldin, and also the citizens Mengistu and Abu-Sayid.” A few hours before the interview, at a memorial ceremony held in Jerusalem for soldiers killed in the 2014 Gaza war, Netanyahu spoke in a similar manner and said that Mengistu and Abu-Sayid “are being held in the Gaza Strip by a cruel enemy.” The bodies of two Israel Defense Forces soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, who were killed in 2014 during Israels Operation Protective Edge, have also remained in Gaza. Mengistu, a resident of Ashkelon, crossed the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip in September 2014, near the coast of Zikim. Abu-Sayid, a resident of Hura, did so in April 2015. The families of the two missing persons testified that they both suffer from psychological problems. We’ve got more newsletters we think you’ll find interesting. Please try again later. This email address has already registered for this newsletter. In June, Palestinian sources told Haaretz that Hamas was in advanced negotiations for a prisoner exchange deal with Israel, mediated by Egyptian intelligence officials and former Fatah chief Muhammad Dahlan. Kan news reported in July that an Israeli delegation was in Cairo dealing with the issue, and Israel confirmed that discussions were being held to reach a prisoner exchange deal. Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh said earlier this month that the release of Palestinian prisoners was closer than ever. The remarks were interpreted as a hint that the talks were indeed progressing. Sources close to the families of Palestinian prisoners have told Haaretz that information they have received does indeed indicate advances toward a deal. However, they stressed that the scope of the deal is unknown, because, they claimed, it is unclear what price Israel would be prepared to pay for the civilians that are currently being held and for the soldiers remains. Human Rights Watch published a report in May calling on Hamas to confirm its detention of the two Israeli citizens, and to reveal details on their condition and release them. According to Human Rights Watch, Hamas position is that “there are no civilians in Israel” and all “Israelis who enter Gaza are spies.” Want to enjoy ‘Zen’ reading – with no ads and just the article? Subscribe today

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed

How solar power is helping Gaza residents overcome electricity crisis – The National

Muhammad Dahman stands near the solar energy panels he installed on his roof in Gaza City. Naomi Zeveloff for The National With two sons at university, a third son in high school, and another daughter coming up through the Gaza school system, Muhammad Dahmans children study day and night, using lights to read and fans to cool off in the heat of Gaza City. Though Mr Dahman, a 46-year-old journalist, is proud of his children, their study routine was once a source of anxiety. In Gaza, where electricity is at a premium, more homework meant more money. On top of the 200 shekels, (Dh206) he paid per month to connect to Gazas weak power grid, he shelled out at least another 200 shekels per month for a generator, just to keep the lights on at night. In April, when the Gaza Strip power plant ran out of fuel following a dispute between Hamas, which rules Gaza, and the Palestinian Authority, which governs the West Bank, MrDahman decided that enough was enough. On a friends advice, he invested in solar energy. In May, he spent about Dh7,350 which he is still paying off on four shiny solar panels on the roof, next to his nephews pigeon coop. The panels provide the electricity MrDahmans family uses during the day, and also charges the batteries that they use at night. Now, he says, the family has a new life. Not only does he have enough electricity to meet all their needs, his home has become a hangout for cousins wanting to cool off or charge their mobile phones. Sitting in his fan-cooled living room, MrDahman said it was a relief to no longer depend on the Gaza Strip grid. Today, he believes that solar energy is the way of the future for the territory. The fact that solar energy is better for the environment is of secondary concern to him. I just want light! he said. Read more: Premature babies and sick children at risk from Gaza’s constant blackouts Most Gazans cant afford solar energy, but for upper and middle class people in the embattled strip it is becoming an increasingly popular option as the local energy system crumbles. The United Nations Development Programme is also installing solar panels in schools and hospitals in Gaza. Last month, the Israeli government further reduced its energy supply to the territoryat the behest of the Palestinian Authority, which blamed Hamas for failing to repay the energy costs. Now, Gazans are receiving just four hours of electricity every 24 hours. Not far from Mr Dahmans home on a busy Gaza City thoroughfare, a solar company has put shimmering panels on display on the pavement outside its shop. Inside, Tareq Darwish, the Oceanic Companys 25-year-old accountant, says that sales of the India-made panels, which must pass through Israel to reach Gaza, have almost tripled in the last 10 weeks. From selling 15 panels a month, they are now selling up to 50. With more vendors selling the panels, prices have gone down from 1,000 shekels per panelto 600 or 700 shekelseach. Its still not cheap Mr Darwish says he cant even afford the product he is selling but he tells customers that solar panels are a safe and environmentally friendly alternative to generators, which can be deadly if misused. In the past, Gazans have died from generator fires and carbon monoxide poisoning from keeping their units indoors. Business owners in Gaza are also looking to solar energy. In the northern part of Gaza City, the tall metal roof of the Al Nour Gas station is topped by tilted solar panels drinking up the sun. The petrol station is part of a large complex owned by the Abu Qamer family, which also includes a popular 24-hour grocery store known all over the northern Gaza Strip for its large refrigerators full of perishable items such as hummus and labanecheese, and a 12-unit apartment building housing more than 100 members of the family. Family patriarch Fateh Abu Qamer, now in his 60s, invested US$52,000 (Dh191,000) in 90 solar panels and 30 batteries to power the complex last July. In the past, the two businesses would barely bring in enough money to cover the costs of electricity, he said. But he expects to make back what he spent on the solar panels and batteriesin two years. Others in the area have taken note and one of Mr Qamers neighbours has already followed suit. Mr Qamer welcomes neighbours who need to charge their mobile phones and even hooked up one neighbours electric-poweredwater supply, he said. In the Gaza heat, the Abu Qamer grocery store is a welcome oasis of cool in the locality. The most important thing is to keep the services running, Mr Qamer added. In Gaza today, that is no small feat.

Fair Usage Law

July 15, 2017   Posted in: Gaza  Comments Closed


Fair Use Disclaimer

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

Under the 'fair use' rule of copyright law, an author may make limited use of another author's work without asking permission. Fair use is based on the belief that the public is entitled to freely use portions of copyrighted materials for purposes of commentary and criticism. The fair use privilege is perhaps the most significant limitation on a copyright owner's exclusive rights.

Fair use as described at 17 U.S.C. Section 107:

"Notwithstanding the provisions of section 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phono-records or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright.

In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:

  • (1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for or nonprofit educational purposes,
  • (2) the nature of the copyrighted work,
  • (3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole, and
  • (4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work."