Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Palestinian leaders arrive in Cairo for talks with new Egyptian president Morsi

CAIRO, (PIC)-- Khaled Mishaal, the political bureau chairman of Hamas, arrived in Cairo on Wednesday at the head of a delegation on a two-day visit to Egypt.

Mishaal, who arrived from Morocco, is scheduled to have talks with Egyptian officials on Palestinian developments.

Mishaal’s visit coincides with a similar one for Mahmoud Abbas, the Fatah leader and PA chief, to Cairo. more

For report on Abbas in Cairo see Maan report here

Gaza executions flout legal process says Amnesty International

The execution of three men in the Hamas-controlled Gaza strip illustrates ongoing failures in the justice system to ensure a rigorous fair trial process, Amnesty International said after three murder convicts were hanged on Tuesday.

Gaza has recently seen a significant increase in executions, with three other hangings this year. At least 14 have been executed by Hamas since 2010.

“The hanging of these men is a deeply disappointing episode in the short history of Hamas’ de facto control of the Gaza Strip,” said Ann Harrison, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for the Middle East and Africa.

“Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases but at least one of those executed yesterday was sentenced to death after proceedings which failed to meet international fair trial standards.

“When individuals face the ultimate sanction, it is all the more necessary that trial proceedings are scrupulously fair.”

Twenty-one-year-old Na'el Jamal Qandil Doghmosh, one of the three executed, was sentenced to death for murder in April 2011. His final appeal was rejected by Gaza’s highest legal body, the Court of Cassation in May this year.

According to his family, Doghmosh “confessed” under torture by police investigators after he was arrested in May 2010. When his family was able to visit him two months later, his nails had been torn out and he had burns and bruises on his body. more

Lifting Gaza siege 'still on Morsi’s agenda' after Clinton visit contrary to Israeli reports

The Egyptian ambassador to Palestine, Yasser Othman, confirmed on Monday that Egypt's intention to lift the Gaza siege completely is still on the new President's agenda. "It is an Egyptian duty," he said.

Speaking about facilitating the movement of Gaza residents and the soft entrance of solidarity delegations through the Rafah Crossing, Othman said: "These procedures are practical proofs for the positive attitude of Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi who promised to lift the Gaza siege completely."

Othman denied news reports in Israel that Egypt has changed its stance towards the Gaza siege after the visit of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Cairo. He confirmed the strong and clear support of the new Egypt to Palestine and its people. more

Rights groups: Israel detains Gaza patient at Erez crossing

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities detained a Palestinian patient due to travel from the Gaza Strip for hospital treatment in Jerusalem, Palestinian and Israeli rights groups said Monday.

Rawhi Fouad Kerkz 43, from Jabaliya, never returned from Israel's Erez crossing in the northern Gaza Strip after he went to meet intelligence officials to discuss his permit on Sunday, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights and Physicians for Human Rights - Israel said.

Kerkez had an appointment in Al Makassed Hospital in Jerusalem for May 31, and while his appointment passed, Israeli intelligence summoned him to Erez to review his application.

After he left early Sunday, later in the evening an Israeli official telephoned the family to tell them he was being held in Ashkelon jail. more

Israeli army raids Nabi Saleh, registers and photographs residents

At 1:30 past midnight last night, large forces of Israeli army raided many of the houses in the village of Nabi Saleh including of Bassem, Naji, Bilal Tamimi, without having any warrant.

Soldiers also attacked Bilal Tamimi, the local photojournalist, took his camera and deleted its memory and handcuffed him for a while. In addition soldiers attempted to arrest Bassem Tamimi’s wife, Nariman, who documented the night raid to their house with her camera.

Accompanied by dogs, soldiers have searched several houses, while making a record of the residents and their houses and photographing them.

Nighttime raids on Nabi Saleh targeting protesters take place on a regular basis, terrifying families and children. The raids, in addition to arbitrary arrests of the residents, are part of Israeli army campaign to deter villagers from organizing the weekly demonstration. more