Monday, 15 October 2012

New group of 39 families cross into Israel to visit Gaza prisoners

GAZA, (PIC)-- A new batch of relatives of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli occupation jails crossed the northern Gaza Strip crossing of Beit Hanun (Erez) en route to Eshel prison.

Ayman Al-Shihabi, a spokesman for the Red Cross in Gaza, said in a press release on Monday that 39 families left for Erez at dawn to visit 27 prisoners in Eshel.

He pointed out that the batch is the 11th of its kind after restoring visits to Gaza prisoners in Israeli jails. more

Video: Palestinian father confronting Israeli soldier who beat his 7-year-old son

An Israeli soldier beat (Marwan Mufid Sharabati, 7 years of age) when he was passing checkpoint 56 to his house, the soldier terrified the little kid and after that he hit him on his chest and smacked him of his face.

The child's father came angrily towards the soldier screaming and shouting. The Israeli soldier did not listen and started to shout in the angry father's face.

US drops Gaza scholarships after Israel travel ban

JERUSALEM (AP) — Amal Ashour, 18, loves Shakespeare and American pop music. One of the brightest students in the Gaza Strip, she studied her senior year of high school in Minnesota through a U.S.-government funded program.

She had planned to study English literature this fall at a university in the West Bank through another U.S.-sponsored program, but just a month before school started, she was informed the scholarship was no longer available.

"When you live in Gaza, you're a pawn in a greater political game," she said in a telephone interview. "There's nothing we can do about it." She is now enrolled at Islamic University, a stronghold of Gaza's ruling Islamic militant Hamas.

Under Israeli pressure, U.S. officials have quietly canceled a two-year-old scholarship program for students in the Gaza Strip, undercutting one of the few American outreach programs to people in the Hamas-ruled territory. The program now faces an uncertain future, just two years after being launched with great fanfare by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton during a visit to the region. more

Israel says it will intercept Estelle ship heading to Gaza

Israeli daily, Maariv, reported Sunday that Israel issued a warning informing Finland that its army will intercept and stop the Estelle solidarity ship heading to the Gaza Strip to deliver humanitarian supplies.

The ship sailed from Italy heading to the coastal region carrying activists from different countries, including human rights defenders from Finland.

Israel sent an official letter in this regard to the Finnish Foreign Ministry, but did not state what type of action it will be taking against the ship sailing under a Finnish flag.

Israel said that the ship will not be allowed to reach Gaza, and will be stopped.

Finland told Israel that the ship carries civilians from Finland, and several other countries, and called on the Israeli Government of Benjamin Netanyahu to show self-restraint.

Estelle left Napoli – Italy on October 7th carrying 20 solidarity activists who are determined to sail to Gaza to deliver supplies, including cement, basketballs, music supplies, theater equipment, cement and various styles of civilian supplies. more