Saturday, 16 February 2013

Israeli soldier posts disturbing Instagram photo of child in crosshairs of his rifle


This disturbing image shows the back of the head of a child or young man as seen in the crosshairs of a rifle. The photo was posted on the personal Instagram account of Mor Ostrovski, a 20-year old Israeli soldier in a sniper unit.

The context – particularly the character of the buildings seen in the background of the image – strongly suggests the child could be Palestinian.

There are no other images to suggest that the photographer actually fired at the person in the image in this case. The image is simply tasteless and dehumanizing. It embodies the idea that Palestinian children are targets.

It reminded me of a chilling account another Israeli soldier gave to the group Breaking the Silence about how Israeli soldiers in Nablus in 2006-2007 would deliberately fire at children, sometimes using live ammunition and sometimes rubber-coated steel bullets: more

Election body: 155,000 registered to vote in Gaza


BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- The Central Elections Commission said Saturday that 155,000 people have registered to vote in the Gaza Strip, with two days to go until the update of the electoral roll closes.

The roll has not been updated in Gaza since Jan. 2005 and the operation of the CEC in Gaza is seen as a boost to reconciliation efforts between Fatah and Hamas.

CEC director Hisham Kahil said 79 percent of eligible voters were now registered in Gaza, and in the West Bank -- where a parallel voter registration process is taking place -- 76 percent of voters are on the roll.

The voter registration centers will close on Monday, and the CEC will then start processing the data, which will take between four to six weeks.

After centers close, rival factions Hamas and Fatah have pledged to meet again to agree an election date and the composition of a unity government. more