Monday, 12 August 2013

Video: Nigel Kennedy and Palestine Strings play Vivaldi at 2013 BBC Proms

The BBC has released this video of the much anticipated 8 August performance by world-renowned violinist Nigel Kennedy with Palestine Strings and members of Kennedy’s Orchestra of Life, at the 2013 BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

The innovative performance of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons included both classical and Arabic-inspired improvisations.

After the performance, Kennedy told the rapturous audience, “Giving equality and getting rid of apartheid gives a beautiful chance for amazing things to happen.”

The entire performance – not to be missed – can be heard online from BBC Radio 3 for only 5 more days.

The Palestine Strings performers, including the brothers Mustafa, Omar and Ghandi Saad, range in age from 12 and 23 and study at the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music in the occupied Palestinian territories. more

Israel now says no date set for prisoner release

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) – The first group of long-term Palestinian prisoners detained before the Oslo Accord will not be released before a two-day delay the Israeli government gave for appeals, officials say.

Ofir Gendelman, a spokesman of the Israeli prime minister, told Ma’an on Monday that Israel hadn’t set a date for the release of 26 veteran Palestinian prisoners whose names have been published on the website of the Israel Prison Service.

Gendelman highlighted that the list was published so as to give the Israeli public 48 hours to submit objections and appeal to the high court against any of the inmates in the list.

An official statement will be issued if a date is set for releasing the first group of prisoners, he added. more

Israel release list is mostly of prisoners already due to be freed soon

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- A list of 26 prisoners due to be released by Israel has divided opinion among Palestinian officials, with some lauding the move while others say the shortlist aims to undermine negotiations.

The Palestinian Authority Minister of Detainees, Issa Qaraqe, on Monday said Israel's decision to release the first group of Palestinian prisoners was an important step for promoting peace.

Abbas Zaki, a member of Fatah's Central Committee, also welcomed the prisoner release, saying freeing all Palestinian detainees was a key priority.

But a senior Palestinian official, who wished to remain anonymous, told Ma'an that Israel had made a "childish decision" in choosing which prisoners were to be released.

Some prisoners, such as Jameel Abdul Wahab Jamal Al-Natsheh, have only 30 days of their sentence remaining, while two are due to be released in six months and eight others have only a few months remaining to serve.

The fact that so many prisoners on the list will be released shortly anyway was carefully chosen to thwart peace talks, the official said. more

Israeli soldiers deny medical help to boy bitten by snake

NABLUS (Ma'an) -- A young boy bitten by a snake in Nablus on Sunday was refused medical attention by Israeli soldiers manning a checkpoint, the boy's father said.

Tareq Abu Aoun told Ma'an that his son Muhammad was bitten by the snake near the Hamra checkpoint in Nablus and lost consciousness.

He asked Israeli soldiers to allow him to pass the checkpoint and call an ambulance, but they refused.

The soldiers told Abu Aoun that he was obstructing the checkpoint and prevented him from queuing to pass through.

An ambulance from the Palestinian Red Crescent managed to access the area after an hour and a half and transferred the boy to Rafida hospital, where he is said to be in a critical condition. more