Saturday, 22 October 2016

Hamas fighter killed during tunnel collapse in Gaza Strip

A member of the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Hamas movement, was killed in Gaza on Saturday after an underground tunnel collapsed on him.

According to a statement released by the Brigades, Anas Salameh Abu Lashin from al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip was killed in the tunnel collapse.

A number of Palestinians in Gaza have been killed in the vast tunnel networks that lie below the besieged enclave, which are largely used for smuggling in the south and military purposes in the north.

In April and May, Israeli forces claimed to have uncovered the first two tunnels crossing from the Gaza Strip into Israel since Israel's devastating offensive on Gaza in 2014.

Israeli officials have accused Hamas of "preparing" for another war with Israel and have threatened retaliatory measures against the Gaza Strip as a whole. However, despite Hamas' inflammatory rhetoric against Israel, the movement has not officially claimed responsibility for any military action from Gaza against Israel since the 2014 war. more

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Israeli forces kill Palestinian woman at Nablus checkpoint after alleged stab attack

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces Wednesday shot and killed a Palestinian woman at the Zaatara (Tappuah) military checkpoint south of the occupied West Bank district of Nablus.

Israeli media reported that the Palestinian woman approached Israeli border police stationed at the checkpoint and attempted to carry out a stab attack, prompting the officers to open fire at the woman and "neutralize" her. She was reported dead by Hebrew language media outlets. more

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Israeli forces detain 20 in predawn military raids across occupied West Bank

At least 20 Palestinians were detained by Israeli forces during overnight and pre-dawn military raids Sunday, according to Palestinian and Israeli security sources.

Palestinian Authority (PA) security sources told Ma’an that in the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus, Israeli forces detained six Palestinians from the town of Sebastiya.

Sources identified the detainees as Nimir Hatim Ghazal, Abd al-Karim Buhluq, Ramzi Naser al-Hajj, Ahmad Azim, Adham Radi, and Rami Radi.

The sources highlighted that Israeli forces sealed off an apartment and a warehouse in Nablus city that were allegedly being used for manufacturing explosive devices.

Israeli troops also reportedly broke into a print shop on al-Salam street in Nablus and confiscated equipment.

From the northernmost West Bank district of Jenin, Israeli forces raided the town of Qabatiya and detained Majdi al-Qazaha.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that there were three detentions from Sebastiya, and confirmed one detention from Qabatiya. more

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Israeli navy opens fire at Palestinian fishing boats in northern Gaza Strip

The Israeli navy opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday, locals said.

Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli navy boats opened fire at fishing boats off the coast of Beit Lahiya in the blockaded Gaza Strip.

No injuries were reported.

Israeli forces deployed at the borderline between the besieged Palestinian territory and Israel also reportedly opened fire at Palestinian agricultural lands east of Rafah City.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that they were looking into the reports.

Israeli military incursions inside the besieged Gaza Strip and near the “buffer zone" which lies on both land and sea sides of Gaza, have long been a near-daily occurrence.

Palestinians who work near the “buffer zone” between the Palestinian enclave and Israel often come under fire from military forces, as the Israeli military has not made clear the precise area of the designated zone. more

Palestinian child killed by IDF in Gaza, Israel tries to dodge blame

A Palestinian child was allegedly killed by Israeli forces on Wednesday in the southern Gaza Strip evening, while Israeli authorities denied responsibility in his death. Gaza Ministry of Health spokesperson Ashraf al-Qidra told Ma’an that 10-year-old Abdullah Nasser Atwa Abu Mdeif was shot in the back by a bullet on Wednesday evening in the al-Qarrara area east of Khan Yunis.

Abdullah was later pronounced dead at the Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis.

Al-Qidra said that the child was killed by a bullet fired by Israeli forces deployed in the area.

However, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that they “were aware of the incident, but not of (Israeli army) involvement.”

Meanwhile, Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Yoav Poly Mordechai denied in a statement posted on his Facebook page that the child, which he identified as "Abdullah Abu Mdeif, 13, from Khan Yunis," was killed by Israeli forces, claiming that he had died after shots were fired in the air during a wedding in the area. more

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

20-year-old Palestinian shot dead by Israeli forces during clashes in Silwan

A 20-year-old Palestinian was shot and killed by Israeli forces on Tuesday night during clashes that erupted in the town of Silwan in occupied East Jerusalem just south of the Old City, amid ongoing violent police raids in the Jerusalem area.

Ali Atef Shuyukhi was shot and critically injured by live fire during clashes at around 11 p.m., with Israeli forces also firing rubber-coated steel bullets and tear gas at Palestinian youth who responded with fireworks and Molotov cocktails, reportedly causing a military jeep to catch fire.

The 20-year-old man succumbed to his wounds after minutes, as Israeli police closed off the area to traffic and pedestrians, denying ambulances access to the youth.

A spokesperson for the Palestinian Red Crescent told Ma’an that their ambulance crews were repeatedly searched and harassed by Israeli forces as they were prevented from accessing Shuyukhi, and were thus unable to confirm details of his fatal injuries.

However, according to the local organization the Wadi Hilweh Information Center, Shuyukhi was shot in the stomach, while state-run news agency Wafa reported that he was shot in the chest. more

Monday, 10 October 2016

Israeli forces detain 56 Palestinians in massive detention campaign

Israeli forces detained at least 56 Palestinians in overnight raids between Sunday evening and Monday across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, with more than half of the detainees coming from the Jerusalem area, according to Palestinian and Israeli sources.

The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) said in a statement that 39 of the total detainees came from Jerusalem, including the 17-year-old daughter and father of the slain gunman who carried out a drive-by shooting Sunday morning in East Jerusalem that left two Israelis dead.

An Israeli police spokesperson said just 15 Palestinians were detained in East Jerusalem neighborhoods while and Israeli army spokesperson confirmed 16 total detentions were made overnight in the West Bank, saying three were conducted in the Jerusalem district -- one from the village of Qatanna, one from al-Ram, and one from Abu Dis.

According to PPS, seven Palestinians were detained from the Qalqiliya area village of Azzun in the northern West Bank. The detainees were identified as 27-year-old Issam Rashed Radwan, 22-year-old Qusai Shahr Saleem, 27-year-old Mohammad Abdulkareem Saleem, 18-year-old Munther Yasser Salama, 23-year-old Kathem Mufeed Radwan, 18-year-old Mahmoud Jamal Odeh, and 22-year-old Ali Fared Hussein.

The Israeli army spokesperson confirmed six of the detentions in Azzun. more

Friday, 7 October 2016

EU joins the US in condemning Israel's new settlement plans in Palestinian territory

The spokesperson for the European Union Friday strongly condemned Israel’s plans to construct 98 new housing units in occupied Palestinian territory in the northern West Bank for the establishment of a new Israeli settlement. The condemnation came two days following notably harsh criticisms by the United States over Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise.

Last month, the Higher Planning Committee (HPC) of Israel’s Civil Administration approved for “depositing” -- the planning phase prior to final approval -- a plan for 98 housing units for a new settlement to be located east of the already established settlement of Shiloh, on lands of the Palestinian village of Jalud in the northern West Bank district of Nablus. It is part of a larger plan for 300 units yet to be promoted.

Meanwhile in April, Palestinian residents of Jalud reported that Israeli authorities delivered notices alerting them that 5,000 dunams (1,250 acres) of private land were slated for confiscation. A new industrial area west of Ramallah was also given approval at the time, near to Israel’s separation wall and the Green Line that divides the occupied West Bank from Israel.

The EU spokesperson emphasized that the new settlement units represented the “accelerating trend of new settlement announcements since the start of 2016,” adding that the move has threatened to further separate the West Bank districts of Ramallah and Nablus while disrupting any possibility of a contiguous Palestinian state. more

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Israeli army shells Gaza after rocket lands in open area in southern Israel

The Israeli army shelled a site allegedly used by Palestinian militant groups in the central Gaza Strip on Thursday, after a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip hit an open area in southern Israel.

Israeli military vehicles stationed along the border between Gaza and Israel reportedly shelled an area east of the Maghazi refugee camp, without causing any injuries.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that they were looking into the reports.

Earlier in the day, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip hit an open area in the Eshkol regional council, causing no injuries.

The shelling and rocket came a day after another rocket hit Israel and the Israeli army launched airstrikes in the besieged Palestinian territory.

Israeli airstrikes and artillery shells hit multiple targets in the blockaded Gaza Strip on Wednesday after a rocket fired from the blockaded Gaza Strip landed on a road inside the Israeli city of Sderot earlier that day.

No injuries were reported on either side. more

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Tensions rise as all-women Freedom Flotilla approaches the shores of Gaza

The all-women solidarity ship called “Zaytouna” has reportedly been intercepted and attacked by Israeli naval forces, according to live updates released by the group on social media.

As the solidarity ship, whose name means "olives" in Arabic, reached less than 70 nautical miles from the shores of Gaza, inside Israel’s unilaterally declared buffer zone -- or “military exclusion zone”-- the Freedom Flotilla coalition released a statement calling on “governments, public officials and people of conscience to support publicly the right of unimpeded passage for peaceful civilian navigation, and the physical integrity of the crew and participants on board, and to support full freedom of movement for all peoples, in particular the Palestinians of Gaza.”

Shortly after, activists lost contact with the ship, leading them to believe the ship was intercepted by Israeli naval forces. However, they regained contact with the ship about an hour later.

Some 20 minutes after regaining contact, the Freedom Flotilla posted a video on Twitter of Israeli naval forces leaving Israel’s Ashdod port to intercept the ship. Activists again lost contact with the ship and released a statement claiming that the ship was under attack, adding that they received “reports” that the ship was surrounded by Israeli naval forces.

The Zaytouna was expected to arrive in the besieged Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening after setting off from the shores of Barcelona, Spain last month as part of the larger Freedom Flotilla. more

Israeli air force, army hit targets in Gaza after rocket falls in Sderot

Israeli airstrikes and artillery shells hit multiple targets in the Gaza Strip on Monday, after a a rocket fired from the blockaded Gaza Strip landed on a road inside the Israeli city of Sderot Wednesday morning.

No injuries have been reported on either side.

Local sources told Ma'an after 3 p.m. that an Israeli airstrike targeted the "al-Qadisiya" training ground in Khan Yunis in southern Gaza, which reportedly belonged to Hamas' military wing the al-Qassam Brigades.

Israeli warplanes also targeted the al-Wahah building, a headquarters for Gaza’s naval police, in northwestern Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip.

Another airstrike hit an agricultural field near a gas station in the northern Gaza Strip, the sources added.

Local reports also said that Israeli artillery shells landed in an open area near Jabal al-Rayyis east of Gaza City Wednesday afternoon.

Spokesman for Gaza's Ministry of Health Ashraf al-Qidra confirmed there were no injuries in the Israeli attacks. more

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Israeli forces kill Palestinian teen near Bani Naim after alleged attempted attack

Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian teenager on Tuesday morning after he allegedly attempted to stab soldiers in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron.

An Israeli army spokeswoman told Ma’an that a Palestinian holding a knife attempted to attack Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint near the village of Bani Naim.

The soldiers then shot at the youth, “resulting in his death,” she said, adding that no Israelis were injured in the case.

Bani Naim mayor Mahmoud Manasra identified the slain Palestinian as local teenager Issa Salim Mahmoud Tarayra, 16.

Local sources said they heard gunshots coming from the Wadi al-Joz junction near Bani Naim, then saw large numbers of Israeli military vehicles rushing to the area and setting up a number of roadblocks.

An eyewitness told Ma'an that a bus traveling from Bani Naim to Hebron stopped at the Wadi al-Joz junction, at which point a youth stepped out of the bus, "then Israeli troops fired at him."

Tarayra is the 230th Palestinians to be killed by Israelis since the beginning of a wave of unrest nearly a year ago across the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel. Some 32 Israelis have been killed by Palestinians during the same time period. more

Friday, 16 September 2016

Israeli forces shoot and kill Palestinian in East Jerusalem after alleged stab attack

Israeli forces Friday shot and killed a Palestinian youth in occupied East Jerusalem after an alleged stab attack at Damascus Gate in the Old City.

Israeli police spokeswoman for Arabic media Luba al-Samri said in a statement that a “terrorist” attempted a stabbing attack on an Israeli border policeman outside Damascus Gate and was “neutralized” by Israeli forces, a term commonly used by Israeli authorities when Palestinians are shot dead at the scene of an attack or alleged attack.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld added in a statement that there were no Israeli injuries during the attack and Damasus Gate has been completely closed off.

The slain Palestinian has not yet been identified.

The shooting on Friday marked the second Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces in less than 24 hours. more

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Israeli forces carry out airstrikes on Gaza Strip, target 3 alleged Hamas sites

Israeli forces carried out several airstrikes on the besieged Gaza Strip during predawn hours on Thursday after a rocket was launched from Gaza and exploded near the border with Israel.

The Israeli army had said the rocket hit an area near the Eshkol According to locals, Israeli forces targeted empty agricultural lands northwest of Beit Lahiya in the northern region, reportedly striking a site used by the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Hamas movement. Israeli forces also shelled another site northwest of Beit Lahiya in the area of al-Shayma also allegedly used by Hamas, causing a fire to break out in the area.

Meanwhile, in Gaza city Israeli forces targeted the al-Yarmouk site allegedly used by the al-Qassam brigades in al-Shujaiyya neigborhood in the eastern part of the city.

No injuries were reported.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that Israeli forces carried out airstrikes on three “Hamas outposts” in the northern part of the coastal enclave in response to a rocket launched from Gaza Wednesday night, adding that the Israeli army held the Hamas movement responsible for all attacks from the Gaza Strip, although other Palestinian militant groups are active in the small Palestinian enclave.

According to The Times of Israel, the mortar shell exploded near the border with Israel. No injuries or property damage was reported. more