Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Barghouthi elected to Fatah central committee

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (Reuters) - The Palestinian political party Fatah rejuvenated its leadership at its first congress in 20 years, ousting many of the "old guard" dominant under the late Yasser Arafat, initial results showed on Tuesday.

But electing younger men to the Central Committee, including Marwan Barghouthi who is serving life in an Israeli jail and several security chiefs, will not bring instant change in the ability of Fatah's leader President Mahmoud Abbas to make peace with Israel -- or with Fatah's Islamist nemesis, Hamas.

"This is an unexpected result. It's a big change, a huge change," said Naser al-Kidwa, a nephew of Abbas's charismatic predecessor Arafat who also won a Central Committee seat.


Israelis to sue EU for providing aid to 'terrorists'

Laughably, European Israelis are demanding that the European Union stops 'funding terrorism' by giving aid to Gaza. This is the same mentality that sees the banning of book imports to Gaza and children's toys because they too can assist in the maintenance of the 'terrorist infrastructure'. But it's OK to bomb the population of Gaza back to the stone age and refuse to let any cement or steel in and provide the bare minimum of food to stop starvation getting out of control.
Israeli and Belgian lawyers acting for Eyal Katorza, who is also a French citizen, are preparing a legal case demanding that the EU does more to protect the 300,000 Europeans living in Israel.

Legal documents, seen by The Daily Telegraph, have accused the EU of indirectly funding Palestinian terrorism because of a failure to "prevent the misuse of European funds by non-profit organisations which use these funds to finance terrorism".


Israeli bombs Rafah tunnels

Israel is pressuring Hamas to stop mortar fire from the Strip with its first air strike on the tunnels in two months. Hamas's military wing, the al-Qassam brigades and the other main armed reistance group , Islamic Jihad, have observed a ceasefire since the war although fire has continued sporadically from other factions.

The military action came as Netanyahu spoke to settlers who had been forced out of Gaza - and no doubt the sound of explosions in Gaza will have made his job easier.

Alongside the air strike - from which there have been no direct casualties, although 11 people have been killed in tunnel collapses over the past two weeks - Israel is stepping up its propaganda campaign against the Hamas government with the 'news' that fighters against the occupation of Iraq are heading to Gaza.