Friday, 10 August 2012

Ministry: 1,500 return to Gaza via Rafah crossing

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Some 1,500 Palestinians returned to the Gaza Strip on Friday as Egypt's border partially reopened after a four-day closure, the interior ministry in Gaza said.

Maher Abu Sbeiha, director of crossings in the Hamas-run ministry, told Ma'an that the Rafah crossing would open again Saturday for people traveling into Gaza, but would remain closed to those trying to leave the enclave.

Egypt opened the Rafah border on Friday to allow the return of pilgrims from Saudi Arabia and those stranded on their way back to Gaza, the state news agency Mena said, citing a high-ranking official, without saying how long it would stay open. more

Free Palestine Movement website releases details on 100 Israeli air force pilots

The Free Palestine Movement has received the following statement and data anonymously. Please note that the data are very limited in scope, comprising no more than identification and sometimes photographs. The statement alleges that the below-named individuals are active duty Israeli Air Force pilots that have apparently participated in war crimes.

A web search provides some corroboration of the data and until now we have found no discrepancies. However, since the data are so limited, we recommend its use to gather more information, possibly including questioning and potential prosecution of the named individuals when they travel abroad.

We thank the persons who sent the data and hope that they may be able to provide more information about operations and decision made by the named individuals that can be used to pursue legal action.

Statement received with data:
The well-being of Israel is temporary and can be undermined. It is obtained through crushing the liberties of its subjects. Foremost are Palestinians- their lives infringed upon, their homes routinely destroyed.

Yet this vast machine is not all-immune. Its weakness lies in its dependance on people which are necessarily vulnerable. Those perpetuating the state's dominion value their lives and property just as highly as do their opponents.

Below is a list of a 100 Israeli air-force pilots under active duty.

They have chosen to harness their skills in the spreading of mass destruction over towns and villages throughout Gaza, the West Bank and Lebanon. State protection renders them immune. A contrived veil of anonymity enables their crimes without them suffering any fear.

Please use and spread this information as widely as possible. more

Official: Egypt temporarily opens Gaza border

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Egyptian authorities have temporarily opened the Rafah crossing into the Gaza Strip for two days, but there is no date set for its full return to normal functioning, the Gaza-based crossing director said Friday.

The border, Gaza's only opening to the outside world under Israeli blockade, was closed on Sunday after gunmen killed 16 Egyptian guards in neighboring Sinai.

"The crossing will be open for all travelers on Friday and Saturday," Gaza crossings director Maher Abu Sbeiha said.

However he noted that it was a temporary measure, and Egypt had not set a date full the full re-opening of the border.

Egypt's state news agency said Egypt opened the border on Friday to allow the return of pilgrims from Saudi Arabia and those stranded on their way back to Gaza, citing a high-ranking official, without outlining how long it would stay open.

Around 200 people had been allowed into Gaza through the border gate by 1 p.m., a Sinai security source told Reuters. more

Shepherd shot by Israeli army denied right to sue

An Israeli commander has ruled that a Palestinian shepherd who was shot by the Israeli military three years ago will not be allowed to sue for damages.

The Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported that the military signed a document disallowing the three year old lawsuit filed by Mohammed Shamasna, but the military will pay 10,000 NIS to cover three years of legal fees.

Shamasna was shot in November of 2007 and had to undergo several operations and a lengthy rehabilitation process.

According to Israeli military regulations, if an Israeli officer finds that someone is injured during a necessary military operation, the wounded person cannot make a claim for damages. However Shamasna’s lawyer Laviv Habib stated that he believed that the order was signed simply to block the case from going forward since it took more than three years to declare that it was a military operation. more

Haniyeh urges Mursi to open Gaza border

By Nidal al-Mughrabi

GAZA CITY (Reuters) -- The head of the Hamas government in Gaza urged Egypt on Thursday to open a vital border crossing closed since gunmen killed 16 Egyptian guards in neighboring Sinai on Sunday.

Ismail Haniyeh pledged his support for Egypt's investigations of the attack, which has led to the biggest Egyptian military assault in the Sinai Peninsula in nearly 40 years.

"At the same time I call upon my brother, Egyptian President Muhammad Mursi to open the Rafah crossing, to regain a lifeline for Gaza," Haniyeh said at a dinner ending the daylong Ramadan fast.

"Gaza could never be anything but a source of stability for Egypt," Haniyeh added, saying those responsible for the Sinai slayings were conspiring to tighten an Israeli blockade on Gaza in force since Hamas seized control of the territory in 2007.

Hamas has ruled out suggestions that Palestinian gunmen took part in the Sinai massacre, and has criticized Cairo for imposing "collective punishment" on the impoverished coastal enclave.

The Rafah crossing normally sees some 800 people a day leave for Egypt and beyond, and is the only window on the world for the vast majority of Gazans. more