Sunday, 9 December 2012

Man dies of wounds sustained in Gaza war


GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A man died on Sunday from wounds sustained in Israel's eight day assault on the Gaza Strip in November, medics said.

Zeidan al-Nahhal, 48, died in an Egyptian hospital on Sunday after being injured in Israel's week-long bombardment of Gaza, which began after the targeted assassination of Hamas military commander Ahmed al-Jaabari on Nov. 14.

Several people have died from their injuries since a ceasefire agreement was signed on Nov. 21 to end violence in Gaza.

Israel's assault on the coastal enclave killed at least 170 people and wounded over 1,000. more

Israeli forces detain 2 PA intelligence officials


HEBRON (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces detained two senior members of the Palestinian intelligence service in the southern West Bank early Sunday, a local official said. The men are from Yatta, south of Hebron, and work for the Mukhabarat, or internal intelligence service, of the Palestinian Authority. Yatta intelligence director Khalil Mohammad Khalid Abu Eid, 48, and head of Hebron operations Ahmad Ali Hassan Bahees, 40, were seized from their homes in a dawn raid, popular committee coordinator Rateb al-Jabour said. He said Israeli forces had intensified activity in south Hebron, particularly targeting former members of the Fatah-affiliated Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades who are protected by previous amnesty agreements. The Fatah brigade was dismantled in the West Bank after 2007, and members went on to sign amnesty arrangements with Israeli authorities. Many were reintegrated into Palestinian government security forces. more

Banksy’s christmas card shows bible scene abruptly interrupted by Israel's apartheid wall


Yesterday an image that is purportedly British street artist Banksy’s Christmas card this year started making the rounds on Twitter. The artwork in question is, in many ways, a conventional Biblical landscape painting, which shows what are presumably the figures of Joseph and Mary — she astride a donkey — making their way toward Bethlehem, only to find their route blocked by the graffiti-covered Irsaeli West Bank barrier.

To the left, a shepherd tends his sheep, while in the distant sky a cross-shaped star lights up the heavens over the imposing concrete wall.

This is hardly the first time the mysterious muralist has commented on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. One of his pieces that currently makes up a controversial display at the Art Miami fair was among those he created during a 2005 trip to Palestine. At the time he also painted nine murals directly on the West Bank barrier, though none of them appear in his Christmas card’s rendition of the region. more

Tens of thousands celebrate Hamas victory rally as exiled leader returns


Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal vowed Gaza's rulers would never give up "an inch of the land" to Israel in an uncompromising speech before tens of thousands of cheering supporters at a triumphalist "victory" rally in Gaza City.

"Palestine is ours, from the river to the sea and from the south to the north. There will be no concession on an inch of the land," he told the crowd on his first visit to Gaza. "We will never recognise the legitimacy of the Israeli occupation and therefore there is no legitimacy for Israel, no matter how long it will take."

The supporters – many of them wearing Hamas green headbands and carrying Hamas flags – packed the open-air venue in rain and strong winds to celebrate the Islamist organisation's 25th anniversary and what it regards as a victory in last month's eight-day war with Israel.

Among the crowd, which Hamas officials estimated at half a million, were some Fatah supporters, waving their faction's yellow flag. It was one of increasing signs in recent weeks that reconciliation between the two rival factions could become a more realistic prospect in the coming months.

Patriotic songs forecasting the liberation of the whole land of Palestine blared from huge speakers, as children, some dressed in military garb, brandished plastic guns and toy rockets. more