Monday, 9 July 2012

Gaza prepares to welcome back soccer player held by Israel since 2009

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- The family of Palestinian administrative detainee Mahmud al-Sarsak, 26, are getting ready to welcome their son who will be released Tuesday after 96 days of hunger strike.

Rafah streets were being decorated with photos of Sarsak after he won his battle.

Sarsak’s elder sister said that “while Mahmoud was in prison, we died a thousand times as we were afraid for his health day after day because of the Israeli mistreatment of prisoners. more

Video: What killed Arafat? Clayton Swisher, Ali Abunimah on Al Jazeera's The Stream

Al Jazeera investigative reporter Clayton Swisher is joined by Ali Abunimah on Al Jazeera’s The Stream to discuss Swisher’s bombshell revelations that the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat may have died of polonium poisoning.

The program debunks several myths about Arafat’s death, including the false claim – being spread by Israeli sources – that he died of AIDS, and explains some of the background, findings and limitations of Aljazeera’s investigation. more

Prominent UK jurist says boycott of West Bank settlement products is legal

A prominent U.K. legal expert recently released a report stating that the European Union would be within its legal rights if it chose to ban products made in West Bank settlements, British newspaper the Guardian reported on Monday.

James Crawford, Whewell Professor of International Law at the University of Cambridge, presented a 60-page opinion to senior officials of EU member states in the past few months according to which the states were within their legal rights to ban the import of produce from West Bank settlements according to European and international law.

Crawford's paper argues that member states acting to ban settlement produce could do so under the EU-Israel Association Agreement provision, stipulating that the agreement "shall be based on respect for human rights and democratic principles."

He further argues that banning trade with the settlements isn't a breach of World Trade Organization agreements because "as a matter of international law, the West Bank and Gaza cannot be considered to be Israel's territory."

The Trades Union Congress, which has been calling for a boycott of settlement produce but has opposed, banning trade with Israel, will publish the paper this week. more

Israeli siege responsible for poor sanitation and pulmonary diseases among children

Amjad al-Shawwa of the Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network (PNGO) in Gaza City told Press TV on Sunday that the besieged Palestinian territory seriously needs help from the “international community” with regard to its poor sanitation.

“Our children are growing in very bad conditions,” he said.

“Israel is completely responsible for what is happening in Gaza.”

Many Gazans, especially youngsters, have developed pulmonary diseases in recent years as a result of the stench emanating from untreated solid waste, according to Gaza health officials. more