Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Gazans back Israel goods boycott in rally to support the Palestinian BDS movement

(Photo: Joe Catron)

Dozens of Palestinians braved a searing July sun to rally in Gaza’s Saha market district against the sale of Israeli products yesterday afternoon.

The demonstration, part of the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, drew participants from the BDS National Committee (BNC), the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), the Palestinian National Initiative (PNI), and the Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO).

“As a Palestinian, I believe that boycott, in all its forms, is a primary tool in our struggle against the occupation,” said Hanan Abunasser, a recent university graduate.

“Our biggest supermarkets in Gaza are almost full of Israeli products. We as Palestinians should insist on alternatives, and all Israeli products should be boycotted.” more

Concern mounts for three remaining Palestinian hunger strikers

Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, Al-Haq and Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHR-IL) are gravely concerned for the life and health of the three remaining Palestinian hunger strikers held by Israel. Of utmost concern is the health and life of administrative detainees Samer Al-Barq, today on his 70th day of renewed hunger strike, and Hassan Safadi who is on his 40th day of renewed hunger strike. Samer, whose current strike follows his previous 28-day strike and whose health continues to deteriorate rapidly, is only taking salts and vitamins and he is still being held in isolation.

Following the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) denial of access of an independent doctor to the hunger strikers Samer, Hassan and prisoner Akram Rikhawi, PHR-IL submitted three appeals to the district court of Petah Tekva requesting immediate access to independent doctors. On 23 July, the district court ordered the IPS to allow an independent doctor to see Samer no later than 1 August and to see Hassan and Akram within two days of the hearing.

Despite prior coordination with the IPS regarding a PHR-IL doctor’s visit to Ramleh prison medical centre on 25 July to examine both Akram and Hassan, the IPS informed the doctor on her arrival that Hassan had been taken to a court hearing and therefore only Akram could be examined. In clear breach of the court order, the IPS still ignores PHR-IL requests to allow the independent doctor visit to Samer and Hassan. more

Israeli tanks cross Gaza border east of al-Maghazi refugee camp

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli military vehicles made a limited incursion across the borders east of al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, witnesses said Wednesday.

Two tanks and a bulldozer crossed the borders reaching as far as 300 meters in the Palestinian territory, onlookers told Ma'an.

Gunshots and blasts were heard as the vehicles entered the area.

There were no reports of injury.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said an anti-missile protection system on a tank near the border "was activated for reasons that are currently being investigated."

She said the system, which deploys automatically, might have been triggered by an anti-tank missile and, if so, "the IDF regards the incident seriously and will respond". more

Anti-tank missile fired from Gaza, Egyptian and Israeli troops exchange fire

Gazans fired an anti-tank missile at an IDF tank along the Israeli border on Wednesday just hours after troops exchanged fire with Egyptian soldiers in the South.

The IDF said that the Trophy active protection system which defends against anti-tank missile fire was activated and the incoming projectile exploded although the IDF has yet to determine if the missile was intercepted or detonated prematurely. The attack took place near the Kissufim Crossing in the central Gaza Strip.

The Trophy system is installed on Merkava Mk 4 tanks – used by the 401st Armored Brigade. Using an advanced radar, Trophy is designed to detect and track a threat, and counters it with a cloud of countermeasures that intercepts the incoming anti-tank missile.

Earlier in the morning, The IDF, the Egyptian army and a group of drug smugglers exchanged fire along the border with Egypt. more