Saturday, 25 February 2012

Video: Israeli soldiers abusing a cuffed, blindfolded Palestinian after wall protest


The video shows a cuffed and blindfolded Palestinian youth who was kidnapped during the weekly nonviolent protest against the illegal Israeli Annexation Wall and Settlements. These protests are organized by the local residents, along with Israel and International peace activists.

The cuffed Palestinian is seen on the ground while the soldiers are just moving him around, dragging his feet sometimes, and placing him in a sitting position against a wall next to another blindfolded and cuffed Palestinian.

It also shows the one of the soldiers standing next to him with his foot raised close to the head of the youth, posing as if he is going to crush his head while filming the abuse using what seems to be his mobile phone.

There have been several incidents where soldiers filmed themselves abusing detained Palestinians at roadblocks, and in other areas in the occupied territories. more

Gaza electricity crisis 'not solved' despite Egyptian supply assurances


GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- The Gaza Strip has not received enough fuel to resume normal electricity levels, a Gaza energy official told Ma'an on Saturday.

Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said on Thursday that the Gaza government had reached a deal with Egyptian authorities to end the electricity crisis that closed Gaza's sole power plant last week, plunging Gaza into up to 18 hour blackouts per day.

But Gaza energy authority director Ahmad Abu al-Amreen said there has been no change in the situation and the authority is still using the same limited pool of fuel. Egypt says it has delivered emergency fuel to Gaza amid the crisis, but the promised deal did not appear to solve the problem of regular supplies.

The deal as described by al-Nunu includes longer-term measures to increase the capacity of the power plant and link Gaza's electricity grid to Egyptian infrastructure. The shorter-term requirement is the delivery of fuel into Gaza, but a disagreement on the route of the fuel still appeared to be pending agreement.

Egypt wants to stop the use of underground tunnels for delivery of Egyptian fuel purchased by Palestinian authorities, and has severely reduced supply through the tunnel network, prompting the current crisis. more

Gaza’s Hamas prime minister voices support for Syrian protesters


CAIRO — The Hamas prime minister of Gaza on Friday expressed support for Syrian protesters seeking to overthrow President Bashar Assad, the first time a senior Hamas leader has publicly rebuked the group’s longtime patron.

Ismail Haniyeh said after Friday prayers at Egypt’s Al-Azhar Mosque that Hamas commends “the brave Syrian people that are moving toward democracy.

Assad has long hosted and supported leaders of the Islamic militant movement, which rules the Gaza Strip, but the group has significantly reduced the presence of its exiled leaders in Syria since the start of the 11-month-old uprising against the Syrian regime.

Some of the top Hamas leaders are now spending most of their time in Qatar, Egypt and Lebanon, as the group tries to distance itself from Assad’s brutal crackdown on opponents.

The United States, which considers Hamas a terrorist organization, viewed Haniyeh’s remarks on Syria positively.

“It just speaks to how isolated Assad is,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner said.

Haniyeh’s speech was another sign of Hamas’ drift away from longtime backers Iran and Syria, as it finds new allies in the region. Hamas’ isolation has eased since its parent movement, the pan-Arab Muslim Brotherhood, gained political influence in the region, including in Egypt, in the wake of the Arab Spring uprisings. more